On Eagle's Wings

On Eagle's Wings
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:29-31


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Hodgepodge for This Season

One of the Hodgepodge questions today is about rushing the seasons. These days, it seems the seasons are rushing by quickly enough on their own. And here it is already another Wednesday - time for a Hodgepodge with Joyce and some interesting questions. Thank you, Joyce.

1. It's National Waffle Day (August 24th)...what decision are you currently 'waffling over'? (or share one you've recently 'waffled over')

I waffled a bit over whether to participate today! And a bigger decision is whether to keep the new dining chairs we ordered a couple of weeks ago. I’m undecided about them now.

2. It's the middle of August, but I'm already seeing lots of autumn-related posts. Do you think we rush the seasons? If so, does that bother you? 

Yes, yes, yes. I went to Hobby Lobby a couple of weeks ago and could not believe the place was FULL not only of autumn decorations, but CHRISTMAS decorations and trees!!!

I saw (here) an end of summer bucket list that included-

make s'mores, read a new (or favorite) book in the park, eat something delicious and bad for you at a state fair, be a tourist for the day, have a pot luck picnic, book a last minute summer getaway, relax by or in the pool, take a hike to watch the sunset, have a day on the lake, try a new summer recipe

Which activities on the list might you squeeze in before summer officially comes to a close?

I’m planning a getaway, but it isn’t going to happen until the first of October. I guess I will have to settle for stepping out to the back yard and viewing a sunset.

3. Your favorite summertime 'art' found in nature?

Sunsets! No two alike. Each one is an original!!

But I also have enjoyed the puffy clouds all summer.

4. Stephen R. Covey is quoted as saying 'We judge ourselves by our intentions, and others by their actions.' Agree or no? Do you define yourself based on your intentions, your actions, or something else? 

To judge myself by my intentions would be fooling myself and for me to judge others by their actions could be wrong not having a way to know their motivations and why they acted as they did. Since I make my share of mistakes I’m not sure I want to be totally defined by my actions. So I may be waffling on this answer. I have other thoughts, but sitting here now trying to express them is proving to be difficult for me.

5. Are you useful in a crisis? Elaborate.

I can be. The biggest crisis for me in which I had to take immediate action was when we were on vacation and my husband had a stroke. I could see from his face what was happening and kept calm, called 911, panicked for a couple of minutes after the paramedics took him away while I wondered what in the world to do about the rest of our trip, the luggage, and how I would get to the hospital by myself about 75 miles away. Thankfully, the tour guide assisted me with those problems and DH and I made it home several days later. While he was in the hospital, I was able to address the practical things such as making travel arrangements and working out details with the travel insurance.

6. What's been your go-to dish this summer? Is it something you'll continue making as the seasons change?

A pan seared oven roasted steak! Delicious discovery. A steak is good for all seasons!

7. Adult coloring books are a thing now. Have you jumped on the bandwagon? If not is this something you think you might enjoy?

I confess to buying one, along with the big box of colored pencils. I colored one page and half of another and decided it was a waste of time. That didn’t do it for me. I think it would be wonderful to know how to paint or play the piano better. At least the colored pencils are good for Bible studies!

8. Insert your own random thought here. 

Right now, speaking of go-to dishes, I’m not sure what dinner will be this evening. Blue Apron was supposed to deliver today and so far, we have not received the box of goodies. They've never been this late before. I guess I will have to get creative since there are no steaks in the fridge! As it turned out, I had some Italian sausage and cheese tortellini to "go to" which made for a good supper this evening.

And yesterday, I mentioned going to an exercise class. Saw this today and thought it was funny.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tuesday Tidbits

My sweet friend from Hawaii is back in town for a couple of months. We were going to meet yesterday for breakfast, but she suggested I might want to join her for a "seniors balance class" at her neighborhood athletic club and have lunch afterward. A balancing class sounded not too difficult and, as she pointed out, ladies of our age sometimes have a tendency to fall so it seemed like a good idea. It was fun, but more of a workout and longer than I anticipated! Experiencing some mild soreness today and it was fun, but I think I will stick to walking. We made up for whatever calories we burned by eating at one of her favorite Italian restaurants after our "workout!" I may need to do some serious walking now, for sure.

RuthAnn in her Texas apparel!

Today our Ladies of Grace Bible study began and so things for me will pick up. Tomorrow DH and I are going to see the new Ben-Hur movie. I'm crossing my fingers for it to be a good one!

We have doves nesting every year under our deck and we love watching them prepare the nest, then waiting for the babies, watching the parents take turns caring and feeding them, and then seeing the baby doves learning to fly. Each time they return to the nest, they fly to the fence and sit, then fly under the deck landing on the ceiling fan blade before flying into the nest. When they land, it causes the blade to turn and on a windy day, the blade is already turning. It's funny to watch them go round and round on the fan blade and wonder what they are thinking about that! But, like all of us, I'm sure it feels good to be home and have everybody snug in the nest. However, since the babies learned to fly, I'm not sure what their plan is for a future home for themselves. They spend a great deal of time just sitting either on our patio or under the wheelbarrow parked nearby. I guess they will figure it out for themselves.

The saying seems to be true: 
They stick together like birds of a feather!

This past weekend, Kate and Jack were with us. Their last week of summer vacation was spent for the most part with either their Nana or us. Although they both love coming to our house, by Friday night, Kate was missing her mama something fierce, but she did very well over the weekend with us and we had a really good time. Jack never expressed his readiness to be home until we were on the way over to their new house. In our conversation in the car, I asked if they were excited about seeing their new bedrooms in the new house. What he said really touched my heart--"When I get home, I just want to sit with my Daddy!"

So sweet! All he cared about was seeing and being with his daddy. Nothing else mattered. And that he did! 

Love that boy!

And here they are ready for the first day of school.

Monday, August 22, 2016

One Last Hurrah for a Blue Monday

It was a cool and rainy afternoon last Friday when we made the drive over to say good-bye to the old house and bring the kids to our house for the weekend while Mommy and Daddy made the move to the new house. What fun!! I didn't envy their work that was cut out for them on this rainy (pouring down floody kind of rain - a toad floater) weekend, but it had to be done. We had the easy? task of the kids for the weekend. The pleasurable task, I should say.

All wrapped up to protect their critters 

Double rainbow!

Friday and most of Saturday was spent inside due to the rain. It was lazy and very relaxing. When the clouds broke up, we went to the mall to buy Legos for the kids and, of course, Dipping Dots and a ride on the carousel. You really can't go to the mall without those two things. However, this trip they made a new discovery. Grandpa and I had gelato and when they had a taste of that, they were in hog heaven, as they say. Yep, we had to go back for more! (I might add here that a trip to the mall on the weekend before school starts is INSANITY!!!! You could hardly walk through without bumping into people and the lines were awful.)

After the mall, we went to church, then out to eat, and then home to begin work on the Legos projects. They both kept after it and the only assistance I gave was to find the pieces they needed and to push in the small pieces that didn't want to connect.

Jack's raceboat

Kate's Doggy Day Care

 And today, it's:
Readin' and writin' and 'rithmetic!

We took them back home yesterday and saw the new house! Although it still is in a state of finishing touches, it looks beautiful. It's been a wonderful summer, but as we drove away from them yesterday, I couldn't help feeling the mixed twinges of happiness and sadness in my heart for the transitions that are happening right now, but know that everything is fine. I don’t like it sometimes that my personality has a tendency to be so melancholy. Right now melancholy is raising its head and tears come in thinking about the fact that the seasons of life are so very visible and present in my life … more so than ever before as changes are happening.

God is good. 
He is working in us and all that we each face every day. 
Life changes, people change, but praise God, He never does. 
He never has and He never will.

I'm linking up today with Jeanne for Blue Monday at Backyard Neighbor. It would be nice to see you there!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Life Changers

Each year on this date, I muse about whether to mention the anniversary of another August 20 that was a life-changer for me. On that day 31 years ago, I discovered how quickly a fairly tranquil world can be turned upside down - in the blink of an eye. 

You wake up, life is normal, you bid your husband good-bye as he goes to work ... and he never returns. You receive the dreaded phone call that nobody wants to get ... and nothing is ever the same. I remember that day vividly. The panicky drive to the hospital, the news the doctor had for me, the people who came to my aid in that time of need, the weather, my emotions, sleepless nights, it is all etched in my memory as though it happened yesterday. 

Since that day, I have experienced many other life-changing days and received news that I didn't want to hear. The good news is I'm stronger now than I was then and I have learned to cherish the time we have knowing that no day is ever guaranteed. I do not dwell on those things that brought grief and loss in my past, but thank God that with His help, I have been able to move on and He has blessed me greatly in my life. I can trust my tomorrows with Him.

A strong woman believes that she's strong enough
to face her journey ... but a woman of strength
has faith that it is in this journey that she will be come STRONG!!!

Not as strong as I want to be. 
Life still throws curve balls ... and always will.

The best news is that

God has been good to me. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Saturday 9: The Trolley Song (1944)
Welcome to Saturday: 9. Here are 9 fun questions to answer, link up with Sam at The Gal Herself, and then visit other participants posts and leave a comment. No rules. Just memes. We love memes, however, and here is today's meme!

... Because Stacey suggested Judy Garland. Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

In this movie clip, just about everyone (except Judy) is wearing a hat. Do you wear hats for fashion, for warmth or for both?

I would love to wear hats, but each time I buy one and put it on, I feel as though I stand out too much. Plus, once you put on a hat, you are committed. It's the hair thing. 

A friend and me with our hats!

2) This song is from Meet Me in St. Louis, which was a huge hit and the second highest grossing movie of 1944. When is the last time you watched a movie in the theater? 

Yesterday we took the kids to see Nine Lives, which I thought was extremely silly and a waste of money and time. I guess it was supposed to be silly, but I did not find it funny.

3) The movie follows the Smith family as their hometown, St. Louis, to prepares to host the 1904 World's Fair. What's the biggest thing happening in your hometown? 

Probably all the construction going on, new restaurants, shops ... our town has been small, but is really expanding now. 

4) This week's featured artist, Judy Garland, is best known as Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. That movie is shown so often that Sam thinks she may have seen it a dozen times. Is there a movie or holiday special you've seen over and over?

I've seen Meet Me in St. Louis several times, and more than I can count, It's a Wonderful Life, Gone with the Wind, Ben-Hur, Imitation of Life, The Long, Long Trailer, The Wizard of Oz and more. But you said only one! I am so excited to see the new Ben-Hur that is being released today. 

5) Judy admitted to being perpetually tardy. Are you usually prompt? Or are you always running late?

Always early. To be late stresses me out. 

6) Judy's first professional performance was a rendition of "Jingle Bells" when she was just two. How old were you when you entered your chosen profession? 

My first job was at 18.
7) Thinking of "Jingle Bells," here's a wintery question for a hot summer day: What's your favorite carol?

Probably O Holy Night, although I love most all Christmas carols that have to do with the birth of Jesus Christ.

8) Judy was a very demonstrative person. She enjoyed hugs and admitted that, when she nervous, she took emotional support from physically reaching out. Are you demonstrative?

I need hugs and I like to give hugs. 

9) She told Barbara Walters that people would be surprised to learn that she was a good cook and specialized in desserts. Do you have a sweet tooth?

Chocolate cake, brownies, coconut cream pie, chocolate chip cookies ... Yes, I have a sweet tooth, but try to exercise more self-control these days.

Friday Foto Friends

I never tire of trying to get a really great pic of the gorgeous sunsets that are displayed right before my eyes every evening. Of course, it really isn't possible with the iPad camera or the iPhone, but I continue to give it my best shot, as they say!

Today I am linking up with Debbie for Friday Foto Friends at Breathing in Grace. And we all are, aren't we? Breathing in His grace, that is! 

These words are from a song by Eric Champion
back in the 90's ... Endless Love.

The other evening as we were driving home (me driving) the sky was magnificent, and to my left was a rainbow! Of course it wasn't possible to take a pic and DH being on the passenger side did not have the view that I did. But, how wonderful! That evening as I stepped out on the deck to take a pic of the sunset, I turned around to go back inside and there was a rainbow! Yes! Thank You!

It’s Your breath in our lungs
So we pour out our praise
We pour out our praise
It’s Your breath in our lungs
So we pour out our praise
To You only

You give life, You are love
You bring light to the darkness
You give hope, You restore
Every heart that is broken

Have a Wonderful Friday!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Happy Birthday, Sara

Happy birthday wishes today to a very special and lovely woman who has been part of my life for the past 30 years. Soon after meeting my DH all those years ago, (like on our second date) he wanted to introduce me to his children, then 10 and 7. They were easy kids to fall in love with and what a blessing these bonus kids have been to me. 

With one of her favorite teachers, Mr. Pierce

Sara was a beautiful and sweet young girl who never (I don't think) seemed to experience any awkward time in her life. She has always been kind, considerate, thoughtful, smart and loving and is an amazing wife and mother to two fantastic boys. 

Sara graduated with an electrical engineer degree from the University of Texas so that kind of speaks for itself, but she is humble and modest about her achievements. 

She has been able to manage all aspects of her life successfully, at home, with her sons, or wherever she is. She is undoubtedly one of the most organized and efficient people I have ever known and has such a tender heart to care for others. Sara has also taught her boys great organizational skills and to handle responsibility, and also to be grateful and the habit of sending thank you notes. 

Happy Birthday, sweet Sara. In going through photographs and scrapbooks the other day, I found a thank you card you had made for your grandma. It was always Grandma Millie's habit to say, "never send a card without putting a dollar in." Here is a copy of your card to her.