Wednesday, November 30, 2011
day 30! wow, that went fast. i have more than a few 'thankfuls' that i never even got to.
however, last night as i was at a friends' house for a christmas gig, i was reminded of how much i love to laugh. i am the kind of laugher - is that a word? - that cannot control herself, and sometimes laughs waaaaaay too loud at the wrong time. still. it feels so good.
sometimes, i actually laugh to myself when i am sitting here at the computer. siesta knows i do this. now you do, too ;)
that's what i did when i saw this picture above, from jim lepage's facebook album called 'funny religious stuff.' is it just me, or do those girls totally look like boys dressed up as girls??? and for some reason, the title just KILLS me. ha ha ha ha ha.
wow. just. wow. hope you have at least a few laughs today. maybe even a guffaw or a titter :)
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
i just realized i skipped a day of thankfulness. a good reminder to me that it's easy to do that :)
i was thinking about things i have missed in this thankful journey. LOTS of things. one of the biggies is music, and how much i love it, because it changes the atmosphere. it changes my countenance.
i used to listen to a ton of sad songs. give me some dwight yoakam and a bottle of whiskey (not really, but they 'go' together) and i'd be good. i kind of secretly love to cry, so i guess it makes sense.
these days, i prefer mellow, easy music most of the time. i like lots of christian music, and mellow stuff like james taylor and natalie merchant from my younger days. i don't buy a ton of 'new' music except for christian, because it's what i hear most often in my daily life.
on sunday, i was painting at the church, and not really looking forward to a dark church and being alone there. alas, we have an ethiopian church that rents the space on sunday afternoons, so i was not alone.
as i was painting away, i could hear the sounds of the small group from the sanctuary. voices in a language i did not understand, and peaceful grooves that waaaaaaaaay carried me away to a good place. my whole mindset changed from task-oriented to experience-oriented. i became peaceful. i thanked God and felt joyful. and happy. and relaxed.
that's it. i am thankful for joyful noises and what they do in our spirits. i think i will turn on some right now, as a matter of fact.
Monday, November 28, 2011
that's not at all unusual, my brain just does not really ever NOT think.
some of the time it's spent worrying.
or repeating something in my head that has happened.
or making my to-do list and actually visualizing it being acheived.
or praying for something or somebody that needs praying for...sometimes, me.
most of the time, my mind is occupied with ideas.
here is the definition of 'idea':
Something, such as a thought or conception, that potentially or actually exists in the mind as a product of mental activity.
i love ideas. ever since i was little, they have been my very, very favorite thing.
yesterday, i had ideas about:
1 john - the book that pastor is teaching about right now - and how careful God was to pack so much meaning into the bible, even more than we can ever discover in a lifetime, if it was our full-time, 24-7 job. i'm thankful He came up with that idea.
homemade spaghetti - that was a quick idea, more of a notion really, and i followed thru and had some for dinner last night.
christmas crafts - oh, emily henderson, you RUIN me! your christmas tv special (which made me want to live in every single house you ever design, truly) made me want to make about sixty new things. and made me want you and orlando to come over for a craft party, because seriously, we would be friends, i am sure of it!!! :) ideas for everybody! yes!
painting a wall at church - well, that idea is one i had with anne a couple of weeks ago. i actually executed it on 'buy nothing' day, which was quite satisfying. yesterday i painted that little wall by the water fountain to match, too, but i forgot to take a pic.
then, in the afternoon i went idea hunting for the kitchen remake that i am going to be starting soon. i got some tile to look at, and help me imagine. i ordered some counter samples from the internet. i talked to the lowes kitchen guy and got some more ideas. heck, he even gave me an IDEA book! how awesome is that! i think i have more thinking about it to do, but the ideas make me happy.
then today, i have a new project that i need to cook up some ideas for. i really should be doing that right now :)
happy day! may your ideas never run out!
Saturday, November 26, 2011
christmas arrived over the last couple of days.
it came without even one trip to the mall, or to target or even to hobby lobby (but with several trips to the basement for 'shopping').
it came with deer and pine cones and lots of vintage sparkle.
it came with hot chocolate and leftover pie.
it came just in time to light up the night, and for that, i am grateful.
Friday, November 25, 2011
ah, it was nice to be 'homeward bound' for the holiday. especially when the sky and landscape were as pretty as that one above. what a glorious day! i was thinking about how many years i have made the trek over the hilltops and through the woods to 'home' - my parents' house. now that they are older, i realize how quickly the time has passed, and how precious each passing year seems.
we (my mom, dad and i) sat in the gazebo - outside!! - yesterday, and watched the world go by. it was fabulous to be there so late in the season. we also got a glimpse of a real, live, ACTUAL turkey passing through the yard! i was amazed, but my folks said that 3 wild turkeys have taken up residence of late. i didn't take this photo, but the guy i saw looked exactly like a real turkey :)) ha. very cool.
and then i came home to a freshly decorated tree. in fact i decorated a couple last night as has become my tradition. i love the glow of Light at night. i have a very grateful heart today, wishing you all a wonderful weekend.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
i didn't know what i was going to post about today. i know i'm thankful that yesterday is over, and our 12-hour workday was successful. for the record, both anne and i 'hit the wall' at the same time, about 10 hours in...
it's harder than i thought to write a month of thankfuls without restating the obvious. since it's the day before thanksgiving, i also feel the need to be profound, which always gets me into trouble.
so, i just went into the kitchen looking for breakfast, found and cut into this beautiful grapefruit, which released the most marvelous smell and *squirt* of juice at the same time, and i looked at it, really looked at it.
there it is. i'm thankful for small delights. some days, well MOST days, it does not take something huge to have a grateful day. as i sit here with my pretty (and tasty) pink grapefruit, a cup of coffee, and a whole day of restfulness ahead of me, i am very thankful.
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
this is my amazingly talented friend anne,
who has done all the hardest work on this project.
i have mostly sat around making stars...
which i am pretty good at :)
whew. here are a few shots of our work yesterday. today is a big day, we are doing two shifts to try and finish up our big project if possible. so far, we are pleased with how things are turning out.
which brings me to my latest blessing: work.
most of you know that during the time of my house buying/selling, there was a very slow period of work for me. and most of you know that i freaked when the work slowed down...for various reasons, but mostly because i am a person who is most comfortable at WORK.
our pastor gave a sermon this weekend about work, and concurred that work is something that God has designed for us to do. it's good to note that God gave adam work to do in the garden BEFORE he sinned and fell....work has always been part of God's design for us!
The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. Gen 2:15
i am imagining having an awesome job when i get to Heaven! i do admit that i've always been able to work in areas that fit closely with my desires...not every job has been great, but they have mostly all played into my skillset in some way. i feel very fortunate for that aspect of my life.
in the past week, i have gotten word that i'll be doing two rather large projects - starting in december and heading into the new year - my normal 'slow' time at work. it's odd that God flipped it for me, to give me my slow time to move, and now to bring work back as i am settled into my new home. He is good to me like that, He truly is...i am thankful!
i hope that your work brings you joy today, no matter what your job description may be :)
Monday, November 21, 2011
i woke up today thinking about next week. isn't that always the way? i hope to really, really enjoy THIS week, but next week i am going on a roadtrip with my favorite art girls.
it's really good for us to do this. we kind of do it 'crazy' style, in that we drive to minnesota, get our visual fill (and usually do some shopping, too) and then drive back in a quick 24-hour frenzy. it saves money and time, but we really have HOURS of non-stop artgirl-time because of the driving. sigh.
this time around, we'll go to 'no coast crafterama' - which is in midtown at the global market. kirst and i used to wander around the global market back in the day. it's good there. the show involves sort of hippie crafters showing their wares, nothing like the country blue crowd that we usually get here in the dakotas. lots of interesting ideas, along with the feeling that i am not so odd come from trips to places like this :)
anyway. lot's to do in the in-between times. but yowza, i am thankful for both of you, lou and cass! and especially excited to bring a new little crafter girl with us this time, as fiona goes on her first artgirl trip with us :)
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Friday, November 18, 2011
happy friday everyone!
i have been MIA for the last couple of days because i have not been at the computer much. it has been a good break, although i will be here a long time today :)
which brings me to my latest gratefulness.
i'm thankful for community. i have been fortunate to have lots of good folks around me for a long time now. i guess it's part of being *ahem* middle-aged, or maybe it is the design of God.
i love that i have a church family, for instance. one that i actually love spending time with - at this time in my life - about 3 times a week. i cannot imagine what i would do without "Jesus with skin on" as my friend anne calls those who come into your life as the light of God. i am very grateful.
after a few busy days, i'm also thankful for alone time. i think there is a HUGE difference between being alone, and being lonely. i am grateful not to be lonely, but to cherish alone time. it gives my mind space to relax, breathe and talk to God about all of the stuff of life. i crave alone time. i am grateful that my profession gives me a good mix of both community AND alone time.
let's see. i'm going to steal from rani's post about her new fire (fab name, btw) and say that i am lastly thankful for books....i just ordered another jan karon book this morning, and am looking forward to getting it, and things slowing down enough to read it. i read 'the mitford series' last winter, and got hooked on the little-house-on-the-prairieness of this writer.
do ya like how i make up my own words (is that an adjective or an adverb or what??)? because i do :)
ha. anyway - grateful for all of these things and more! i hope your day is filled with goodness and gratefulness, too.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
schwew. i'm kind of late posting, but that is because today i am thankful for TODAY. today i lived in the present moment, doing something i truly enjoy with someone i truly enjoy. and mostly, i am thankful that i got to call it 'work.'
i wonder how many hours i have spent at the computer in my life? many of them have been truly enjoyable, but lots of them have simply been 'making the doughnuts' when i would have preferred to make something with my hands.
my friend anne has glorious hands to make things with. and a creative spirit to match.
that's why i enlisted her to make christmas decorations for a client here in town....and that is what we did today. actually, we made ONE pot out of several we'll need to finish before black friday.
we enjoyed ourselves. and we WORKED. our labor produced the kind of thing you cannot make on the computer, and i guess we both found that immensely satisfying.
thank you God, for today's work. i ask that you bless us with more chances to work at something that we love, to create and build and then to reflect and enjoy our creation...
Monday, November 14, 2011
ah. what a fantastic weekend. i admit i was a bit crabby after saturday came and went, and i did not complete any items that i had on my to-do list. the day was good, just not super productive.
so yesterday, i kicked it into high gear (high for me, which may not be all that high) and got the garage emptied enough to park my 'bert' inside. i woke up this morning sore and satisfied!! bring it, winter, i am ready now.
which leads me to my gratefulness. this morning in my bible time, i thanked God for giving me a healthy body that enables me to do things like clean out the garage. our bodies are amazing, and i take mine for granted way too often.
i did wake up with sore hands and arms from the endeavor. i suffer a bit from arthritis, at least i think that's what it is, especially in the changing seasons. i asked God to take away a bit of the pain today, if He would.
His answer to me came quickly, as i was reading Hebrews this morning. the verses talk about disciplines that are appropriate for God to take in order to better us, because He loves us. even though it might have seemed a bit out of context, the ACTUAL words used went like this:
So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong.
So there you have it, my goal for the week, and my Helper who will make it so. So very thankful for the Word of God, alive and real and life-changing, for sure. Thank you, Lord, let's have a great week together!
Saturday, November 12, 2011
happy weekend, everybody!!!
that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Friday, November 11, 2011
whenever i think about veteran's day, i always ALWAYS think of my uncle gail, who served in the navy. although i have other relatives who served, he is the one that i think of as most exemplifying the spirit of the military. he was a wonderful, wonderful man who always had a huge smile and a hug for me, and who never was shy to tell me he loved me, a rarity in my family.
he died about 6 years ago, and my aunt elizabeth almost 2 years ago to this very day. there are some people in heaven that i can hardly WAIT to see, and these 2 are pretty much at the top of the list.
i am thankful for loved ones, aren't you?
happy friday, and happy veteran's day!
Thursday, November 10, 2011
wow. 10 days into this thankful thing. it's going fast, although i admit i'm not going too deep :) ha. it's kind of whatever i can grab and take a picture of...meaning no people, even though i am REALLY thankful for a lot of you... ;)
lessee. facial pheromones....those are pretty swell. remember when i posted about them not long ago?
seems that SOMETHING has mellowed siesta out. she still vertical scratches on the couch, though, so it's not a perfect thing.
but her new favorite spot to rest (under the tv cabinet) is about 2 feet away from the pheromones. coincidence?
i think not :)
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
today i am thankful for serendipity, defined as:
the faculty or phenomenon of finding valuable or agreeable things not sought for.
which leads to my 'happy accident' from yesterday, as it were.
i now live on a tree-lined street. one of the desires of my heart.
except for when leaves abound, and you are moving and don't have time to deal. and ESPECIALLY when you have a fastidious neighbor who carefully bags HIS leaves in a very, very straight line dividing your property, making your neglect all the more noticeable.
especially when, a couple of weeks later, the wind takes note of the fastidiousness, and decides to blow leaves all over HIS yard, making yours look somewhat tidy in comparison.
and especially all the more when, in a stroke of serendipitous timing, a little man with a mower, blower and bagger comes along and parks on your street, clearing the masses of leaves from the yards of your elderly neighbors.
and when you ask ever so desperately, he tells you he will also remove YOUR leaves for the bargain basement price of $25.
leaving you with another razor-straight property line demarcation, THIS time to your advantage.... :)
ha. until the wind blows, i am sure. happy wednesday!
Tuesday, November 08, 2011
today, i'm thankful for art. i was actually GOING to say i'm thankful for the Holy Spirit, but i don't have a good illustration to use.
see, that demonstrates why art is so important :)
i have been framing the new pics over the last week or so. so far, i have only had to buy one frame, and some matte board. very satisfying. i cannot for the life of me hang things level...esp. with plaster walls. i really need one of those picture hanger levels that they sell on infomercials. lots of crooked makes my head hurt.
yesterday, i noticed that all of the art for my office has a bird theme. what?! i do like birds, but that is a little crazy. it's like realizing that all of your sweaters are ponchos. ONE poncho is good, but they cannot all be ponchos or you become the wacky poncho lady. not. good.
art can be complicated, too.
but mostly, it just makes my eyes happy to have a resting place. some days (well, every day) you just need that.
Monday, November 07, 2011
this guy has taken on some crazy flower action.
he was heading one way, but has completely switched directions
since i moved him over toward the window. love!
well, another beautiful day here in SD....such a lovely fall. i am praying for carey as she directs a video shoot today. we're trying to squeeze the last bit of summer out of every second.
my house is kind of looking like a greenhouse. to be honest, house plants are not my favorite thing. i tend to forget about them, and that usually is not good. they do help to make a long winter seem a bit more cheerful.
i'm grateful for the natural world that God provided for us. i keep thinking about eve and adam, and how beautiful it must have been in the garden WITH God. i cannot imagine how beautiful my garden in heaven is going to be :))
if it's anything even remotely close to the natural beauty of this world, we are in for something good ;)
Sunday, November 06, 2011
thankful for: setting up the new office with a perfectly imperfect accessory from junk bonanza.
thankful for: saturday night on the couch crocheting. oh, pretty yarn, i have missed you!
thankful for: kitty settling into her old perch with the new scenery outside. we both are finding that the new normal is much like the old. feeling grateful to be back to the rhythm of our lives...
'happy extra hour' today, all!
Friday, November 04, 2011
tgif. thank God it's friday. that's what i'm thankful for today. this has been an exhaustingly wonderful week! so thankful for tomorrow, for a 'date' with lou at the washington pavilion, and for more cleaning/sleeping/organizing on the weekend. our church also starts a new '3 service' sunday on - of all days - daylight savings 'fall back' day. that should make for some interesting stories.
life is good right now.
i'm also thankful for chocolate chip cookies. going to test the new oven this weekend, with this recipe. i hope they turn out!
well. what's the worst that a chocolate chip cookie CAN turn out? seriously. you can't really totally ruin them, i know this from experience.
come for coffee soon?
Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies
from Food Network
- 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 ounces English toffee candy (recommended: Heath or Skor bar), finely chopped
- 1 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, and chopped
- 1 (12-ounce) bag semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Line 2 heavy large baking sheets with parchment paper. Finely chop the oats in a food processor. Transfer the oats to a medium bowl. Mix in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars in a large bowl until fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Stir in the toffee, hazelnuts, and chocolate chips.
For each cookie, drop 1 rounded tablespoonful of dough onto sheet, spacing 1-inch apart (do not flatten dough). Bake until the cookies are golden (cookies will flatten slightly), about 15 minutes. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely. (The cookies can be prepared 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.)
Thursday, November 03, 2011
yesterday was the first day in awhile that i did not leave my house. i've been feeling a little sickish, and i had a big project to start. it was so nice to not have to go anywhere. it was so nice to work. it was so nice.
i am starting to feel a bit more settled. i look back at the last few months, and i can see how much God wanted me to turn to Him with the unrest. i can see that, really, He was my supply of peace. real TRUE peace in the unknown and the uncertain.
whenever i think back to the days before i was a Christian, honestly, of all the rewards - THIS one is the biggest for me.
thank you, Lord, for peace.
And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give.
So don't be troubled or afraid.