Tuesday, September 30, 2014

That easy, peaceful feeling

This golf course water hazard is our water feature.

My friend Ann and I walked up our old driveway.  So familiar and yet so different.  It had been over six years since we lived there but for over 30 years our life was tied up in that house.  We had loved, laughed, fretted, rejoiced, grieved and celebrated there over the years. We brought all our babies home to that house.

Now it belonged to someone else.  

We had planted beautiful flowering crabapple trees in that yard.  One to celebrate the births of each of our sons.  For many years, I had made crabapple jelly from the fruits of those trees.  Sweet, tart, ruby red jelly.  Yum.

And I had a hankering to do so again.  But first I wanted to ask permission.

Ann made the introduction as the tenant opened the door.  The woman, grabbed my hand, repeated my name, and thanked me.

She went on to explain that in the midst of her less than peaceful life, she felt such peace in that home.  She expressed that to a mutual friend (small town) who said that was no surprise because that house had been prayed over and prayed in.  Bible studies held there.  Bible instruction imparted to the children in that home.

It was so sweet to hear that.  That the home that we loved retained that feeling of home.  Of peace.

And yet, peace is not found, necessarily, in a place.  Peace is found in Christ alone.

We can sit on our back deck with a slightly obstructed view of the above pond and fountain ( I know, right?!) but our minds could be churning with anxiety and worry.  A beautiful place does not guarantee peace.  Only the Prince of Peace can provide that.

After two weeks and one day of living in this home, we will carry on the tradition started in our former home.  Tonight begins a Bible study here.  I look forward to laughter ringing in these newly painted walls, of prayers being offered and Scripture being pondered and discussed.

And later this week?  I look forward to making some crabapple jelly.  

Permission granted.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Begin again


Oh, my.  What a glorious fall!  I think because this is our first fall back in the Northwoods in six years we have a greater appreciation for the beauty we have here.  The colors range from a pale yellow to gold to orange to red to burgundy to bronze.  With the backdrop of conifers, the contrast is stunning.

Even on a gray gloomy day, the woods are alive with color and light.  We are just past peak color, which is always a little sad, but the leaves that have fallen still retain their brilliance.  At least for a few days.

And then, there will be raking.  

The resident fisherman and I explored the woods around our home the other day.  We own 1.5 acres, but are adjacent to hundreds of acres of recreation area.  We found an intriguing looking trail the other day and did some exploring.

It was picture perfect day: no bugs, 72 degrees, light breeze,beautiful blue sky.  The trail sloped gradually upward and we soon found ourselves at the top of a ridge overlooking a lovely gully.

We both felt so blessed and so thankful to be in this beautiful spot and a snippet of a phrase from a hymn went through my mind:

When through the woods and forest glades I wander
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees,

Then sings my soul, my Savior God, to thee:
How great thou art! How great thou art!

It was an impromptu worship service in the middle of a forest glade.  We felt blessed beyond measure.


Several bloggers are doing a '31 days of blogging'challenge during the month of October.  I am toying with the idea of jumping back into the blogosphere again.  I don't plan to link up to any of the 31 day challenges, but unofficially, I think I will go for it.

Anybody else out there?

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Moved in

The neighbors:

The neighborhood:

I think we're gonna like it here.

Monday, June 09, 2014

On a lighter note

If I recall correctly, my paternal grandparents had a single lightbulb hanging over their kitchen table.

There the extended family would gather.  When the bugs would drive us off the porch we would sit around that table under the solitary light for a bowl of ice cream (sometimes homemade!) with rhubarb pie.

I have wondeful memories of us congregating where light was available, as opposed to scattering to far flung corners of the house each with our own separate personal devices.

I reflected (pun intended) on that as we looked at light fixtures earlier today. We were sent home with four catalogs, averaging 600 pages in each book.  

We need to pick out task lighting, pendant lighting, kitchen lighting, bathroom lighting.  Do we prefer clear, amber, or frosted glass; brushed nickel, chrome, burnished bronze?  Globes pointed up or down?
Modern, traditional, vintage, arts and crafts, transitional?

Yikes.  So many choices.

And don't get me started on refrigerators.  Right now, I would gladly use an icebox.  We certainly had plenty of ice available this past winter.

Oh well. Modern life is more complicated. Back to the catalogs.

We have a lot of decisions to make.  

My grandma? Grandma knew how to shed light on the subject.

Friday, June 06, 2014

Homeward bound

After six months of house hunting; not including two years of looking on line, we are finally under contract to buy a home.
Picture taken prior to grass greening up and trees leafing out- it looks much better now!

If all goes well, we will be closing five weeks from today!  Moving day won't be until September.

We will be doing some cosmetic work to update the interior.  And when I say update, I don't mean trendy or expensive.  I mean freshened up.  New flooring; new paint; new shades.

My goal and my heart's desire is that our home will be a welcoming place to family and friends.  Cozy, comfortable, uncluttered.

The next few several weeks will be busy as we make choices, begin to pack (again!), make a trip to Tennessee with one of my sisters, and have all the kids and grands come and visit.  

I will try to be better about chronicling the journey here.  Writing it down helps me process and make decisions.  And it will be fun to look back later on the chaos.  :)

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mother's Day visitor

One of the more elusive residents showed up very, very near our back patio last night.

The door was open since it was a gorgeous day yesterday.  All that stood between me and Mr. Bear was a flimsy screen door.  He looked at me, I looked at him.  Then I ran...to get my ipad.  Never thinking to close the glass door.  The last few slices of pizza were on the kitchen counter and how was I to know that isn't what attracted him in the first place?  He could have easily bashed the door in and helped himself.

I returned wth the ipad (it was much closer than my camera) and went outside to stalk him.  I did look around a few times to see if he had any company.  He didn't.  Strangely, I felt no fear.  Just curiousity.  And we all know what that does to cats....

I called two of our condo neighbors to tell them to look out their patio windows.  Mr. Bear tore down a bird feeder and just generally hung out here until the neighbor in the other end condo started hollering at him.

Then he loped off into the woods.

It was so cool.  I could *bearly* contain my excitement.

Oh, and by the way?  We live in town.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014


I woke up early this morning and walked to the store, about a three mile round trip.  It was not snowing.  :). Carried home about 15 pounds of groceries.  #feelingstrong

Took out the garbage, made my bed, had my devotions, showered, emptied the dishwasher.  All before 7:30.  #feelingproductiveandmaybealittlesmug

This month is wonderfully busy with new, challenging, familiar and exciting events. #feelinghopeful

But most of all?  #feelingblessed