Wednesday, August 31, 2011

When there's no greater joy...

Images of her flash through my mind... The sweet baby... the darling toddler...

The caring sister, nurturing a sibling... The thoughtful reader... mini-seamstress... writer, artist and chef extraordinaire...

Now before me is a young, new wife and mom, asking how to make a rug and if the baby feels warm. We pass through aisles of a store together, taking turns carrying the baby while chatting about anything, everything and nothing at all.

And my heart is glad. My daughter is my friend.

A part of me longs to go back and hug her more... hold her when her heart broke... offer much more patience during very trying times. As many moms sometimes feel from time to time, I wish I could take a bit of the pain away... Most certainly I'd like to take back harshly spoken words.

Yet, I live in this moment. And it's a beautiful one that I cherish. For I rejoice that my daughter has made the ultimate decision. It's not a new one for her, but a continuing, developing decision to live for God.

My heart swells while I flood with emotion and I envision my girl on this path for years to come. It's not an easy path. She'll find that it's not easy to let go of pride and embrace humility. It's an outright war to try to tame your tongue. And life gets tough sometimes. Incredibly hard questions face us... Why me? Why this? Why him? How can I get through this? How can I face that?

But, she knows. She has a relationship with God. She seeks truth and doesn't have to answer each question. She will learn to let go and simply believe that a Sovereign God knows all and can be trusted.

A few weeks ago she and I were walking through a park. She had recently read a parenting book which really spoke to her and we were having quite a conversation.

I shared with her that I had my share of regrets as a parent, but that in the end, I hoped my children would know that I loved them very, very much and was sorry for my mistakes, but that I did the best that I could.

She stopped. She spoke. She said,

"Mom, don't say that to your children. Just say you're sorry. Jesus didn't die for, 'I did the best that I could', He died for our mistakes and sins."

Thank you, dear Heavenly Father for the gift of being a mom. Thank you for salvation and hope. Thank you.

I am so excited to serve God with my daughter.

3 John 1:4 "I have no greater joy that to hear that my children are walking in the truth."


Saturday, August 27, 2011

Morning Walks

Since my son-in-law went camping for the weekend, my daughter and grandson have lots of time to spend with me! I'm all for that! This morning we went for a walk...

Morning Walk - Mom 004

What a beautiful morning to share with my lovely girl.

Morning Walk - Mom 026B

This friendly little guy came close and beckoned us to follow...

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Morning Walk - Mom 050B

Jayden had just woken up, so it was fun to watch him take in the new surroundings...

Morning Walk - Mom 057B

Morning Walk - Mom 087B

Now, check this out!! This boy can pose! He is all natural, too!

Morning Walk - Mom 089B

So, it was a great start to the day. However, now I am back home and have cleaned windows and sanded sills and the mantle and need to start painting again... oi!

And to top off this lovely blogging moment, I will post my favorite photo from the week to share over at Renaissance:

Morning Walk - Mom 092BSSU

Blessings to you all, friends and family! Have a beautiful weekend!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Drum Roll, Please!!

Yes!! After a few months, I have finished the baby blanket for Jayden... It will fit the twin bed that will follow the crib and be useful for years to come. Happy sigh.

And since I am here, I may as well put up my recent favorite photos of the boy!

I can NOT believe how big he is... We have so much fun with him every single week... Not a week goes by that I don't gaze at him and watch him grow and change. It happens so quickly! I just breathe in the moments, knowing that his first year will be but a beautiful memory...

Monday, August 22, 2011

Saying Good-bye to Summer

Yes, I love, love, love summer. Although I felt jipped because we didn't have very many hot days, I did enjoy the more mild summer. Nothing beats a warm summer night, out in the dark and I didn't get but a couple moments like that... I am already looking forward to next summer!

Here's my farewell to Summer 2011...

Thanks for being warm enough to bless my garden with good food:

Thanks for the amazing sunflowers...

And thanks for the lovely nights!

You might enjoy visiting other's "Good-bye Summer" sentiments over at the LENS Photo Challenge

Blessings to you and your last week of August 2011.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

More August Progress!

It's been exciting to have a few days to work around here!! I am excited to report that those paint thingys that are small squares with tiny rollers on one edge that you use to roll around edges of walls and around door frames work! It took me a couple of times to get the knack of it, but I was able to enjoy making quicker "cutting in" progress.

My entry was has gone from this:

To this:

I don't have a before photo that is recent, but one side of the living room now looks like this:

This next week I hope to work on this dining room wall and the other half of the entry way:

(Insert note to Ron here)
Hey, Ron, this is a different ladder... Just so you know... since you always notice the ladders in my photos...
(Continue with post)

Anyway, it feels SO good to see progress... to sit back and see a cleaned up space just feels "freeing". I have been looking forward to getting these things done for months now... There's just a very wonderful satisfaction in turning around a living space and making it lovely. One more week of August... I wont meet my goal of finishing the painting inside the house, but, it will happen...

Blessings to you, family and friends!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Wedding Rug

Several years ago I had all wood floors and when remembering my Grandmother's woven rag rug, I decided to learn to make my own. They are such fun to make... learning patterns and color schemes, etc. I've made many of them over the years and most of them have been for wedding gifts. It's a blessing to me to know a bride's color scheme and to spend time praying as I made the rug. I pray for each person that steps onto the rug, the future husband and wife and their home life.

This year my oldest girl got married and that moment came and went so quickly that I didn't have the time to make her wedding rug. A few weeks ago she asked me about making one for herself and we picked out colors and I got her started. She just didn't get the knack of it, so this past week I took it back and started over with it. I am so glad that I did because it provided to opportunity in a couple days of my busy week to weave and sew and pray for her... as she continues this path of being a wife... learns and grows with her new husband... parents a little joy in my life named Jayden.

Here are the photos of the rug:

Next up... making matching curtains for her kitchen...

Hope you are all enjoying your week.

Week 3 of August

Life has been so busy lately and I think of my blog and photographs and words to say all the time, but just haven't sat down to follow through...

First off, weeks 2 and 3 had to be combined because I had some fun family activities come up that kept me from meeting week 2 goals. During week 2 one great thing did get accomplished, though. Remember that awful desk and the state of clutter?


Although the painting wont be done for another couple of weeks, here is what that corner looks like for now:

I'm so excited!! It's so much nicer. I love the cozy look.

Some day I am going to have a more critical eye and catch things like that baggie behind the tomatoes...

I would love to take some of those and have fun playing with apps... maybe some day... I don't know why, but I really like the one that flew in the wind and turned out blurred. It's just so neat!

Here's our single, happy pumpkin growing:

Since we've been looking at nature, why not the moon? A friend sent me some cool moon photo ideas. My first couple of shots do not come anywhere close to what she sent. I have a lot to learn still. No matter what aperture I dialed in, I could not get the person and the moon equally in focus... Now I watch for moonrises...

And speaking of nature and the moon...

Well... not sure what that has to do with nature or the moon... but, isn't he just splendid? Well, yes, that does have something to do with nature and the moon. You see, he loves our willow tree... and the moon was out.

Now I am off to work hard on goals for this week... again...


PS Yes, if you look at my new desk setup, there is a paper with pictures of Zeva from NCIS printed... she inspires me. And my kids laugh when they open up the desk. Each one says the same thing: "Really, mom?" And I laugh. Cause you have to keep your kids guessing sometimes.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August Week 2 Goals

Today is a beautiful day and I am taking lots of time to sit and relax... to visit... to admire the sky, garden and enjoy pets. Particularly Joseph. He's such a darling pet!

Looking at this past week, I am thankful for the goals that were set a week ago. Yet, I must acknowledge that some days were very difficult. It's hard to break habits. It was very trying to stop myself from jumping on the computer and instead grab a book to read. But, it was worth it. I was able to meet my daily goals Monday through Thursday. Come Friday, though, I felt the pressure of getting that week's goal of painting the ceiling done. It took a whole lot of time and effort to roll paint. We have a high vaulted ceiling. Ouch. So, on Friday and Saturday my main focus was this one task.

Trying to break down the task of painting the kitchen, living room and halls as well as reorganizing and fixing some stuff around here is not easy. I think I took a realistic approach last week and hope that this week's goals are also realistic.

In the midst of daily life, fixing meals, helping with sweet grandbabies, enjoying my pet, Joseph (he's my son, actually)... I will attempt the following: (Why does this sound like a magician's trick??)

***Continue daily devotion (bump it up from 3 focused days last week to 5 this week!)

***Read: 30 minutes daily, continuing the rule of "Before getting on the computer, grab a book and read for 15 minutes!"

***Crochet: If I can get around the edge of the afgan once a day, this should get done in a couple of weeks!

***Photography: Continue enjoying what I have been doing. Learn some more!

***Home Improvement: (This one really bugs me this week) Clear stacks of papers at desk, give desk to high school son, Clayton, move into tall-upright desk, establish new filing drawer, re-organize shelves and paint entryway and lower walls of outer kitchen/inner living room walls... A lot of this is busy work that I detest. But, it must get done.

Here are my before photos, none of which are to represent quality photography:

Those are just painful! I would like to state, in my defense, that these areas have received quite a low priority as I've repainted my kitchen and done the ceilings... So, have mercy!! Well, that sounds good... but, reality tells me that my desk looks kind of like this a lot of the time. Switching to the tall, upright desk should help. I wont have open space to clutter up!

Now I am off to enjoy this evening. Think we'll get some take out food and enjoy a movie... early PJ night!!!