Monthly Archives: December 2013

A Picture Worth 1000 Words

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http://www.projectreverb.com/2013/12/16/prompt-for-december-16/

Today’s prompt is to give 1000 words, or just a picture that’s worth that.  This is my beautiful daughter and (one) of my most precious grandbabies – walking down by the river at the bottom of their property.  It was August.  It was hot.  1000 words would not begin to define the pride that I have in the woman that my daughter has become.  She is my daughter by love, not blood.  Some would call her a step-daughter.  But I raised her, much as her birth mother and the other women in her young life.  I didn’t divorce the kids, just their father.

I look at this picture and I think about the picture that my father has on his shelf; one of him and a great-grandson, walking hand in hand into the sunset, in an apple orchard; Pop is carrying a basket of apples. Vo is just about the same age as Ace.

I look at this picture and my heart swells with so much love and pride.  I remember the wonderful birthday party they gave me down there, on that grass where they are walking.  I think of the beautiful child, holding her mother’s hand and I praise and thank GOD for the abundance of blessings that he has given us.  There are no words, not even 10,000, that can describe the gratitude and love that I have for my family.

The Year That Nothing Happened

I finally “got it” last night. And now, I’m compelled to write about it because, quite frankly, I’m not sure how to respond. I’m glad that this epiphany has come to me. It’s actually quite a relief; with a generous dose of anxiety mixed in.  But, let me explain so others will know what I’m talking about.

I decided to join the Reverb13, and have really enjoyed the introspection and anticipation of the coming year, but some of the daily prompts have really stumped me. You see, besides quietly and happily turning 50 this year, nothing much else has happened, to me and my husband at least. I was inspired, but by the ability of others to stand up and continue on in the face of adversity. Bad adversity. Heartbreak, loneliness, illness, multiple deaths of loved ones; house repairs, job implosions. At times, I think I’ve mentioned before, I actually felt guilty because of how peaceful my life was compared to others around me. And then during the last few weeks, I’ve heard over and over “We’re praying that 2014 is the year that nothing happens”. Last night I heard it again and it finally hit me. This dear lady had lost both her mother and grandmother within just 3 or 4 months of each other. Now her Dad is moving to Florida because of his sorrow, and so essentially she’s losing his presence in her daily life as well. Wow! That’s rough.  I mean seriously – this woman has shown so much strength and peace; I know it’s got to be a front; but at the same time, I also know that she is strong in the Lord, and her faith, and a good husband, is what’s carrying her through.

So, as I look back, I’ve seen 2013 as a peaceful and pleasant year, personally.  A year where “nothing much happened”.  I think I’ll just continue to be grateful for that.  It’s funny though, we’ve put wheels in motion right now that could potentially make 2014 one of the busiest, perhaps stressful years in quite a few.  And the crazy thing is, that if one thing happens, it’s going to be crazy, exciting; but if it doesn’t happen than the basket will tip in the other direction and all the crazy, exciting, stressful will tip out anyway.  Either way, 2014 looks to be shaping up to be a wonderful but intense year.  I hate to look back, but I hope that this time next year, I can remember 2013 and  the wonderful year when nothing much happened.

Sunday’s Sermon, Worth Writing Down

I like to remember things that I hear along the way; as I said before, a good quote can take you a long way.  I have Matthew 6:33-34 and Psalm 46:10 both posted on my trim at work; as well as a few others that I like to remember.  The pastor said something yesterday that I’d like to remember as well.  I believe that it is closely related to 1 John 4:8

If you hate who I love, than you do not know me, because who I love — is everyone.
Yeshua

Thank you Jesus.  Thank you.

The other thing was the beautiful words to the song Greensleeves, which has always been one of my favorite tunes.

        What Child is This?

What Child is this who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap, is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?

This, this is Christ , the King.
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing:
Haste, haste to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary!

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Making Progress

In July [yes, July], I decided to make four sets of scarves & hats for my grandchildren for Christmas.  I have to admit that although I’ve struggled with picking out patterns and yarns for each, I’ve had a really great time.  As I made each hat, each scarf – I thought about the child for which it was intended; then as I made each thing, I would think fondly of that child – about all the many cool things there is about each one, and how each one just delights me to no end.  (Yes, I’m a Mimi that’s totally in love with my grandbabies!) — It’s been fun.  And while the things that I make for the kids will probably always be thought of as people do about those tacky Christmas sweaters that Great Aunt Lollie knits for everyone, it’s been fun for me – and I bet their mother will make them wear them in front of me, at least once! 😀

Many thanks to all the great folks out there that provided the patterns.  I’ve included your sites on my Free Patterns Page as well.  Thank you Ladies!

Head Hugger Cap by Redheart

Hat is Redheart and scarf is a simple p2k1 pattern.


Warm Up Hat

This hat was Lionbrand “Warm Up Hat” and the scarf is a Tunisian Crochet stitch that I got from Mooglyblog.com

 

Petula Hat & Catsby 3 Hour Cowl

I loved making this set; the hat is the Petula Hat pattern by Viktoria Gogolak, found on Ravelry. The infinity scarf was super easy and can be found at Catsby Three Hour Cowl by Kathryn Jones also on Ravelry

Ruffled Hat and Mittens

This lady’s site and instructions were AMAZING! I just can’t thank her enough for all the clear, easy instructions that she has included in her tutorials. I really learned a lot from this piece and it’s one I go back to again and again! Beginner-Crochet-Patterns.com YOU RAWK!!! And aren’t these Family Mittens precious? Thanks again to Lionbrand!

 

 

 

I am who I am today because of who I was yesterday

http://www.projectreverb.com/2013/12/04/prompt-for-december-4/

ProjectReverb Day #4: Hindsight is the one thing we never benefit from in the present.  Is there one moment you wish you could do over?

Titles? “I can see clearly now…”?  Nah… I’m running a day or so behind on the Prompt Of The Day, but I guess that’s okay.  To take one’s time and reflect; I’m thinking that’s the point.  Hindsight is a rather tricksy thing.  I’d like to call it an emotion; maybe it is.  It can be wisdom, or that “Doh!” moment where you realize just how truly unwise you really are.   I think sometimes that hindsight tends to lead to regret; and I vowed, long ago, never to live with regret.  So, the prompt asks, “Is there one moment of 2013 that you would do over?”.  That’s simple.  No.  I’d like to keep this piece upbeat and positive, so I won’t go into all the spiritual ramifications of regret, or “do overs”.  I’m just simply going to say, that as a Child of The Light, A Follower of The Way of Jesus Christ – I don’t actually accept the concept of regret.  When I fail or falter, I confess my sins and shortcomings and get back up to continue running the best race and giving the best effort that I can.  To do otherwise would be to make light of the sacrifice of the Grace Gift given to me by My Lord, Jesus Christ.  So, that being said  – I don’t live with regret, and hindsight only serves to give me insight into either the future or “what just happened?”

For example, in 2011 I took a job way below my qualifications, making less money than my first job in this career.  Its working for the state, so the benefits are excellent and the job has zero, alright 2%, stress and responsibility.  As I’ve said before, now that I’ve got my arms around it, I really should be ashamed for lolly-gagging around here, but I’m not.  I’ve worked hard all my life and now it’s my turn to just rest and coast for a while.  My husband said I could.  In fact, he’s the one who insisted.  This way, my main focus is on us and our home and not on my job.  Sounds fair; I knew he was the old-fashioned type when I married him.  However, this past year has been filled with lots of frustration and, at times, regret, for not taking a different path.  But I’ve got all that worked out now; thankfully.  I mentioned that 2014 promises to be an exciting year full of changes.  It may, in truth, simply be a returning to where I’ve been before.  I don’t know.  But I do know, that if I do go back, when it’s time to move forward again, that I’ll do things differently the next time.  Hindsight has given me insight, but not regret.

Shine On You Crazy Diamond

http://www.projectreverb.com/2013/12/02/prompt-for-december-2/

ProjectReverb Day 2 Challenge:  Shine – What was your best moment in 2013?
Oh.My.Gosh!  I totally gots dis! 

But wait….I had two — probably more.  Can I only pick one?  I can’t pick one.  I have to pick two.  We’ll go chronologically since order of importance would just be too hard to decide.  My first BEST moment of  2013 was found as I looked around at my surroundings during an early evening on a Saturday in April.  The sky had been filled with grey, low hanging clouds all day.  My beautiful grandchildren were all playing in soccer games (except the baby who was giving me as much of her full attention as a two year old can have), it rained throughout the morning; my daughter and my sons were wandering around, standing close by; occasionally one of them would reach out and hug me or rub my back; my husband was close by – he’d hold my hand, play with the baby.  That was a good day.  But then, my day just got better.  It was my 50th birthday that day and my daughter and her family gave me the best and loveliest birthday celebration that a woman could ever ask for.  The kids made mini cupcakes and everyone decorated one each for Mimi and Poppa.  Dinner was cooked over an open fire, the wood all stacked and ready to set the  bonfire.  The sky cleared off and the wind died down.  It was warm; the sound of the river running just a few feet away.  The kids were all running around playing hide and seek.  We were having such a wonderful time; and it was then that I looked around and realized that “this” was the perfect moment.  Life would never, ever be any more perfect than it was at that moment.  And that was the first of my two best moments of 2013.

The other was something quite different.  It was the moment that I looked down at my new “love-child”, aka Lottie The Rotttie, and realized that we had most definitely been the receivers of a gift and blessing from God.  We didn’t save Lottie, she was a gift.  My only regret, is that we didn’t go get her sooner.   My husband wanted a “guard dog”.  Its painfully apparent that Ella, the Great Black Hole of Love, will never be champion protector of the family.  We laugh, because as a lab/hound mix, she’d probably just let an intruder into the house and show him where the biscuits are kept.   The cat, although quite the Diva Princess Kitty, is still a sleeper among ninjas.  We’re not so sure she’d care to wake up if someone busted into the house; unless of course they shut the door behind them, and then she’d just want them to open it so she could go outside.  So after much discussion on breeds, size, hair type, etc., we finally settle on a Rottweiler.    Off to the animal rescue sites we go; and would you ever believe (?!) there, in our sister city, at my personal favorite animal pound, there was featured a full-blooded Rottweiler.  Beautiful animal, sweet face.  I remember going to see her; we had two candidates.  I was rooting for the smaller one.  We turn the corner of the cages and this Gi-normous dog peeks out at us from her dividing wall; and I quickly throw up a prayer, “Please God, don’t let it be that dog, that dog is monstrously big.”  But itdaGirls was indeed “that dog”, and she was indeed the one that we took home that day.  To make a story of it, I’ll just have to say that there is not a day that goes by that Lottie does not make me laugh.  She has brought so much joy into our home and has blended into our “mixed” family from the beginning.  So now, in addition to the Black Hole Of Love, and the Sleeper Ninja, we have an action-ready guard dog, who will greet you at the door by nuzzling your hand, and promptly flopping down on the ground to give you her belly to pet.  Not quite the intimidator my husband thought we were getting.  But to be fair, she is an awesome guard dog, and although her gentle, laid back nature can sometimes be mistaken for laziness, I have no doubt that I’m safe and well guarded.  Lottie is short for Lot of Girl – and she is all that!

No Matter Where You Go, There You Are…

http://www.projectreverb.com/2013/12/01/prompt-for-december-1/

This is cool — My friend at Pywacket.org has turned me on to the Reverb2013 blogroll/challenge.  Well, why not?!

The first prompt is “Where did you start in 2013, give us some background”.  Well, that may or may not be all that notable at this point.  I seem light years away, and yet it was only yesterday.  I guess that’s one of the charms of getting older; except I can’t remember all those things that happened 30 years ago like it was yesterday.  What I can remember  is what I had for lunch today.

I started the year with my “youngest” twin son having what will probably be his final blowout with his father, and even though I did not, and do not have, anything to do with it, it still pulled me in and for quite a while I was so very worried about my son.  That’s an awful feeling; not knowing where your child lays his head at night.  Not knowing how to reach him; and neither do his friends, or his brother for that matter.  I must admit, he was fine.  And he did resurface fairly quickly (Why is it that there is always a woman involved?), which only brought his life into more trauma-drama; which only served to give me many more sleepless nights.  But through it all, it was really just a storm outside the window of my own warm little world.  I had my own concerns, my own husband and family to care for, my own job –which was still relatively new — I was finally starting to get ahead of the learning curve; but still, there were challenges.  Actually, it seems like this year, 2013, has been spent with my being concerned for, praying for, and watching over, others as they have had one miserable week/month after another. In the meantime, at times I felt like I should be ashamed or at least apologize to someone for just how happy and peaceful my own life has been.  We got a new dog, who has completely stolen my heart.  We’ve cleared up a lot of difficult and lingering problems from past lives.  I’ve gotten ahead of  my job, which is now deafeningly quiet and without challenge.  All the kids are fine, including the troubled one. The grandchildren are growing and beautiful.  It really has just been a year to remember – the year that nothing terrible or heart-rending happened.  And, to top off my blissful year, we may or may not have a life-changing surprise in the wings.  I’ll know in a few days – certainly before the end of the year.  Either way, 2014 looks promising.  Next year is shaping up to be busy, full of adventure, and absolutely something to look forward to.  As my husband and I lay in bed on Thanksgiving night, our pillow talk turned to God and all of his many blessings – as they often do.  We just laid there and counted every single blessing that we could think of from this whole entire year.  Wow!  Talk about a humbling experience.  So faithful; so gracious.  And yet, I still think that there’s one more blessing that I have forgotten to count — the hope and anticipation of the coming year.  Thank you Abba.  When I think about my past, and all the places in life that I’ve been – to think about how exciting this coming year is going to be, and how blessed this past one has been — That’s.very.cool.