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, February 24, 2016


Isn't it an amazing thing that when you think you are going to do something to bless someone, you are the one who turns out to be the recipient of the blessing?

Today, after Bible study, I wanted to stop by and take lunch to one of our Ladies of Grace who is recovering from surgery last week. When I asked her about bringing lunch, she said no, not to bring lunch, but do come visit and have lunch with her and her sister. So do you think I objected to that invitation? No way! 

We had some good Chinese food while we visited and she shared all the good things that had happened to her while in the hospital and her excellent recovery. She is a bold witness for the Lord and had the privilege to share the gospel with her doctor, anesthesiologist, lab technician and another young woman in the hospital, every one of whom chose to believe. Angels are rejoicing. And so did we!

That's what it's all about!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016


Yes, we thought Spring had sprung these past few weeks, but reality hit today! Winter hasn't yet departed. It's cold, cold, windy and rain! Lots of it! And did I mention it's cold? The good news is, we can always use the rain. And, it is another chance to wear winter clothes, which I love! Sweater, boots, coat ... well, the umbrella is always a pain when you have to be in and out of the car. The wind blows the heck out of your umbrella and the hood on the coat won't stay on your head!

We have been pretty fortunate this winter not to have ice or snow. After dealing with my Trudy the past couple of winters, I had been dreading how it would be to deal with her this year. She has to be picked up and carried out to the grass where she begins the circling round and round while we watch to witness whether she actually does anything or forgets why she is out there. 

"Going in circles, don't really know
Where I have come from, where I will go
I've been through a million trips in the night
Going in circles.

Slipping and sliding makes it even worse for her and me. After about 15 minutes of watching her, it then falls to me to go physically carry her back inside. Now something happens inside this old dog's head when she sees me coming to fetch her. She, who has trouble with her legs, all of a sudden reverts to puppy hood and thinks I have come to play a game of "catch me if you can" and runs like a puppy. Oh well, gotta love her and neither of us can bear the thought of putting her down as long as she eats, poops and walks. 

We are supposed to go see Kate in a program at her school tonight, however, this weather is causing these usually loyal and faithful grandparents to re-think whether we really should drive the 35 miles over there in the weather and traffic. Traffic on 75 is always a risk and especially on a day like today. Rain and darkness add to the problem.What a dilemma.

My heart is torn. What to do?

*part of the lyrics from Going in Circles

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Riverdance ... and other weekend happenings

Thanks to Amy's generous Christmas gift of tickets, DH and I attended the performance on Saturday of Riverdance! Wow! This far and away exceeded my expectations. I halfway expected DH to want to leave at intermission, but he wanted to stay. Great plan because the second half was absolute stunning! These dancers, singers, athletes! are fantastic! We were requested not to take pics or record any part of the show, so I lifted a few off their website

If you ever get a chance to see them, go for it! Amazing performances. I had never seen them before and don't know about their past performances, but I loved the way they took you by dance, word and songs, through the history of the Irish. It stirred up my longings to go visit.

We really wanted to go to Ireland and had our trip all planned out, paid for and ready to go in September, 2011. Unfortunately, a huge event happened to cancel our plans. Nine One One. We did not get to go and since that time, have never planned another trip there. I'm not sure why, but now it is doubtful that we will ever plan another trip overseas again.

Standing in line at the concession stand, there was a woman and three young girls. I kind of noticed them, but the youngest, maybe 6 years old, nudged me and wanted to give me this. I thanked her politely, but when her Mother explained to me that she wanted to do an "act of kindness" I thanked her even more for her thoughtfulness to me. I am guessing someone had told her about Random Acts of Kindness.

This morning at church was our annual workshop for children's church. I have served in the children's ministry for the past 25 years, give or take a few months off after surgeries or that kind of thing. I have watched children in the nursery, toddlers, preschool and grade school grow up who are now serving in the children's ministry. It is a privilege to serve in our church under our children's pastor, Ms. Geni Brooks. What an enthusiastic and heartfelt love this woman has for children. She is an inspiration to me and all who know her and I believe when we all get to heaven, Ms. Geni will have brought thousands of kids with her to be with Jesus. 

Some of our Gracekids singing Ancient Words

And, last but not least. A baby shower this afternoon for Helena, one of our preschool teachers. She and Pastor Jesse will have to get a bigger apartment now to make room for all the goodies they received. A fun idea at the shower I had never seen before: a basket of diapers on the table and we were to write something fun on them for Helena to read each time she changes a diaper. This was easy to me because the baby's name is Ellie and that was the name our granddaughter gave to her best imaginary friend. Ellie. We did have our challenges trying to find Ellie when we played hide and seek with Kate. So I wrote that on one side of the diaper and, on the other side I wrote: 

No Poop Left Behind!


Prayers for Baby Ellie

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Saturday 9: Sixteen Tons

My Friend from Florida, Teri, does this meme each Saturday and it always looks fun, so I have decided today to join in. Thanks to Samantha, over at Saturday:9, for another fun group of questions to answer. You can find the blog HERE and link up with other 9ers for some interesting exchanges!

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

I loved this Ernie Ford song. We sang it over and over as kids. Our favorite part was, "if you see me comin' better step aside." 

1) 16 tons = 32,000 pounds, because there are 2,000 lbs. to a ton. Without looking it up, do you know how many ounces are in a pound?

Yes, I do. And last night as I saw the weight of the steak I was preparing for dinner, I realized we would actually consume twice as much each as what should be a normal serving. Every bite was delicious. 

2) The singer describes himself as having "a mind that's weak and a back that's strong." Think about yourself. Which feels more powerful today, your body or your brain?

Today, I have to say my body, since we worked on taxes yesterday. 

3) The poor chap in this song has money troubles. Are you good at sticking to your budget? 

We learned some hard lessons over the years, but sometimes when a trip sounds good, I have to say we don't stick with the budget. It's difficult at Christmas, too. 

4) Tennessee Ernie Ford snapped his fingers as he recorded this song. It's been said that while it's possible to snap your fingers of both hands, the noise is louder with your "dominant hand." (So if you're a rightie, the finger snap will be louder with your right hand.) Try it yourself. Did you find this to be true?

My right hand clicker is much stronger. 

5) Mr. Ford appeared as "Cousin Ernie" in three episodes of I Love Lucy. What's your all-time favorite sitcom?

I have several, and Lucy used to be at the top of the list. But, Andy Griffith, Dick van Dyke, the Walton's, Father Knows Best, and Mary Tyler Moore are also favorites. When I was in the hospital a couple of years ago for two weeks, I watched them on my iPad when I couldn't sleep at night. 

6) Tennessee Ernie took the money he made from his performing career and invested in a California cattle ranch. Think back to the last beef your ate. How was it prepared?

Funny you should ask. Last night I cooked a pan-seared and oven roasted ribeye steak. It was so simple and so good. Salt and peppered, Montreal steak season, seared in olive oil and roasted in the oven. 

7) Mr. Ford passed away at age 72 in 1991. That year, Dr. Seuss also died. What's your favorite Dr. Seuss book?

His weren't books from my childhood reading. But reading The Cat in the Hat and Oh the Places You'll Go were fun to read to the grandkids. 

8) Gene Roddenberry also died that year. Mr. Roddenberry is best known as the creator of Star Trek. Who is your favorite Star Trek character?

Not a fan. 

9) Random question: We're having smoothies. What's your favorite?

I mix kefir with my smoothie mix, a cup of blueberries, a few strawberries and it holds me until lunch.

Preview YouTube video Tennessee Ernie Ford Sings 16 Tons

Tennessee Ernie Ford Sings 16 Tons

Fun Friday

Friday was a productive and enjoyable day. After breakfast I baked the vegan chocolate chip cookies, did a few other chores, and we began to work on the taxes! A major ordeal since I have never done taxes before. Although we waded into it together, we had to quit around noon after running into a couple of dilemmas. Will get back to them on Monday. I had other things on my list of things to do, but I guess they too will have to wait until Monday. Voting will be at the top of that list.

Later in the afternoon we decided to go investigate a new park to take the kids to play. The weather was perfect and it was wonderful watching children in the park having so much fun.

More hints of Spring

Remember these? 

My sister and brother are just sitting in the above photo. But I remember how we would spin these things so fast and then jump on. It's a wonder we didn't kill ourselves.

A new improved, updated version of the old merry go round we played on in the park

Two for the See-Saw?

 Here it's built for four

 Swings for big people

 All in all, a great park to visit and I can't wait to
take the kids to play and have a picnic!

The rosy sunset was a lovely end to a beautiful day.

Out With the Old ... In With the Older!

 First, just a little hint of spring in our neighborhood

After my Mom passed away, one of the things I wanted to keep was my great-grandmother's china. I brought the set home to display in my china cabinet. For all these years they have sat there while we used the everyday, practical dishes, Corelle or Chinet. 

It has often occurred to me that this just isn't right. These dishes should be used. My grandmother used them. (I do remember the time she tricked (deceived) us kids by serving fried rabbit on our plates. We thought that chicken had really big legs!) My Mother only used the dishes occasionally. I want to utilize them now because it's highly unlikely that anyone after me will want them and they will probably end up in a thrift shop somewhere.

So, out with the everyday and off to the local thrift shop!

 The old

In with the set from Grandmother Sanders. This set may not be so valuable in monetary terms, but they are precious to me because they were hers, my Granny's and my Mom's. Using them will be a visible reminder of the loved ones before me who nourished me with love, faithfulness and guidance (and good eats!)

The oldest

The dishes now repose in the everyday cabinet ready to use. And they were used last evening. A beautiful ribeye steak cooked just right, roasted sweet potatoes and green beans were the fare to celebrate! Why do I never think to take pictures at the right time? The food was really pretty! :-)

Pictured below is a set of stoneware that I purchased when I married 46 years ago. They've seldom been used, DH dislikes them very much because they are so heavy, and so they have been residing in the bottom of the china cabinet. 

The in-between has been promoted to the top shelf
in the hutch.

This probably wouldn't have been blog worthy for me except for the fact that I seem to remember reading a poem or an article somewhere about waiting to do things. Waiting to travel, waiting to use certain items for certain occasions, putting off doing things in general, waiting for the right time. I will say that we have done our share of traveling, but I've noticed about myself that I put off a lot of things for the right time. Now I see that we are getting older, times are getting harder, I want even more to enjoy the life I have today. I argue for myself that I have enjoyed my life, but the age old question still remains. Have I used it to the fullest? I won't look back. Lot's wife did and she was stopped in her tracks! I press forward and on for the prize. Press on. Press on. These dishes can be one of my simple reminders.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Random Hodgepodge

I have missed out on the Hodgepodge the past few weeks and therefore, have missed out on the fun. If you want to join in this week, run over here to visit Joyce's blog From this Side of the Pond, get the questions and answer on your blog.

1. February 17th is National Random Acts of Kindness Day. It lands on the calendar one day after National Do Something for a Grouch Day (February 16) which somehow feels related. Perhaps the 16th inspired the 17th?

Tell about a time you performed a random act of kindness or were the recipient of one. Will you make an effort to perform a random act of kindness on the 17th? Share details if you're so inclined, and if you have something specific in mind.

Because I think we should always be about doing kind things for others, I'm not sure that I think doing random acts of kindness are something we should be discussing in terms of random. I try to help wherever I can whenever I am able. 

Just out of curiosity, I googled to see what exactly is meant by random acts of kindness. "A random act of kindness is a selfless act performed by a person or a group wishing to either assist or to cheer up a individual person is to be kind, thoughtful, use your manners, give out compliments, volunteer, and or forgive someone." Wikipedia 

Well, I think I was correct. These are things we should do at every opportunity. But doing the kindness when the recipient is least expecting it would make it even nicer.

One of my weirdest random acts of kindness backfired on me years ago. As I drove out of the church parking lot one night, I noticed a man standing in the cold waiting for the cross town bus. I had seen him in church a couple of times, but didn't know him or anything about him. Normally, I would NEVER have offered a man a ride (I have been known to offer rides to ladies who appear to be in distress), but since it was at church, I thought it might be all right. I said goodbye to my husband on the phone and clicked it off. As soon as he got in my car, I felt totally creeped out. He was a very large man and had a certain aroma about him that was very unpleasant. It turned out he needed to go way out of my way, but I didn't feel I could make him get out of the car. So we made polite conversation as I very anxiously drove him to where he had directed. As soon as he was out of the car, I picked up the phone again to call my husband only to learn my earlier call with him had never disconnected. Surprised by that, I said hey, and he blasted me with questions! "Are you out of your mind? Are you nuts? You could have been murdered and I would have had to listen not knowing where you were!" He. Was. So. Angry! (I know his anger was from the fear he felt as he listened to his wife in the car with a strange man). I cried and cried and confessed as to what a very stupid thing that was for me to do and promised that was something I would NEVER, EVER, EVER do again.

2.What's the most uplifting or encouraging thing you see happening in the world right now? You may have to dig deep for this one.

I am encouraged and uplifted each time I read about organizations such as International Justice Mission who are rescuing women and children from violence and sexual slavery. I applaud their courage to do this. 

3. Black olives, black currants, black grapes, black beans, blackberries, Oreos...your favorite food the color of night? Your least favorite on the list?

Black beans are the favorite in this list. I guess the least favorite might be black currants. Truth is, I can't say I've ever had a black currant. 

4. A while back I read (here) a list of twelve things you should do before you turn 50. They were: travel when you have the chance, take care of your skin, learn a foreign language, make exercise a habit, leave a toxic situation, stop caring what others think about you, stop worrying, volunteer, spend time with your grandparents, pledge to work less, learn to cook an amazing dish, and seize an opportunity as it arises

What do you think of the list? What would you add or remove and why? If you're over 50, have you done all 12? If you're not yet 50, have you done any at all? What's on the list that you haven't done, but would like to do?

My husband and I traveled every chance we had and I'm glad we did our traveling when we were younger because it is so tiring these days. We still travel, just easier trips. I'm taking better care of my skin, learning to care less about what people think of me, and spending less time worrying. I  have volunteered in several different areas, ESL to a woman from China, was a Stephen minister, a senior outreach volunteer Bible study teacher for several years, working children's ministry for the last 30 years or so, and taking meals to people in need. 

I haven't cooked any amazing dishes, but have been learning to get away from cooking the same old things. 

I really would like to make exercise a daily habit. I begin, get in to the habit, and then let other things take priority. I also wish I had learned to speak Spanish. 

Above is one of my favorite travel pics. We were on a train in Austria doing a Sound of Music Tour.

5. Besides the classic Christmas flicks, what's your favorite film where winter plays a part in the setting? 

Dr. Zhivago has some of the most beautiful winter scenes ever. I still feel the frigid harshness of the winter when Yuri has left the army and is walking back to Moscow. His beard and eyebrows actually have icicles. 

6.When did you last feel helpless, and what did you do about it?

I feel helpless as I watch my husband not being able to remember things, as he depends more and more upon me. I am praying about it, discussing it with him and his doctor, trying to stay on top of it.   
7. Share a favorite proverb. 

8. Insert your own random thought here.

DH and I stepped back in time last weekend to listen to music by the Glenn Miller Orchestra. They were fabulous. Very easy listening, but I did wonder what the stories might be as to how the songs came to be given names such as, String of Pearls. Pennsylvania 6-5000 was interesting because it was the telephone number of a hotel in New York. Hmmmm.


Friday, February 12, 2016

Friday Tidbits and Ordinary Days

These past few weeks have been fairly routine and the kind of days you call ordinary. Nothing exciting. But hey, ordinary days are good. No one is sick, lovely weather, absolutely nothing to complain about. Pleasant things going on, Bible studies, good books to read, lunches and dinners with friends, a Glenn Miller concert this weekend, and MORE Downton Abbey.
There really hasn't been much to blog about, but since this is a journal of life, I think recording the ordinary days is a good thing. These are beautiful days.

Six years ago it looked like this outside!! Wow!

Getting things done around here! My dishwasher is now working and my counters are no longer covered with dishes draining dry.

And ... yesterday ... drum roll ... A new hot water heater was installed. Our old hot water heater was the original (18 years) and, although it was still working fine, the fact that the builders had installed it in the attic (how crazy is that) made me nervous thinking that it might burst at any time. This actually happened to one of my neighbors while they were on vacation and their house was damaged to the extent of them having to move out while the house was pretty much overhauled both up and downstairs. Yikes! One of my worst nightmares creeping across my mind at night. We replaced it with a tankless water heater and that takes a huge weight off my mind, out of the attic and yes, it took a big chunk out of the old bank account. But I think it will be worth it in the long run as it will be more efficient and also now I'm relieved of that probable bursting scenario. The plumber told me the old tank was filled with sediments eating away at the glass and that we were fortunate to have so been proactive. 

Only other news around here is that we will be going on a cruise which I will tell all about when we return. I'm not sure how I somehow manage to pick vacation spots where some big happenings or threats are going on. Zika! I think the good news for me is that I'm too old to be pregnant. Bad news is mosquitoes seem to be drawn to me so I'm thinking I will have to pack lots of bug repellent with me.

On a more pleasant and surprising note, I actually sat down at the piano last week and played through my simple songbook. Most enjoyable ...even if not every note perfectly played.

Valentine's Day when we were kids was always something to look forward to. Remembering all the sweet paper bags we decorated with hearts and hung on the wall at school in excited anticipation of all the valentines we would receive from our friends. No matter that the ones we received would most likely look very much like the ones we had put in their bags. Lol! Be mine. Kiss me. Little candy hearts. Heart shaped cookies baked by homeroom mothers.

Silly ones

Cute ones for all

For someone special

Happy Valentines Weekend! We will be going to the concert I mentioned above, which should be good. And Kate will be spending the night tonight. My plan is for us to make valentine cookies.

DH and I always make homemade valentines (and all our cards) for each other. This year I actually put a stamp on the envelope and put his in the mailbox. Won't he be surprised to receive his valentine in the mail? The postman may be confused. Wonder if he will pick it up and take it to the post office for postmark or if he will just slip it back in the box?

Here is an old valentine I made one year very quickly as I had waited until the last minute! It was too large so I had to scan it in quarters, (and don't know how to piece it together) so it looks a little weird.

And last, but not least, mentioning the little candy hearts with cute sayings brought this old valentine acrostic to mind. It is my favorite Valentine!