Storms

Matthew 7:24,25

24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock.

It is the week of Thanksgiving, there is talk of gratitude in the air. As it should be.

I can always think of things to be grateful for. The Lord has been good to me and shown Himself in ways that I am very thankful for. “God things” make life worth living.

It’s not so much the thankfulness that I struggle with, it’s the rain that comes in torrents, the rising floodwaters, and the never ending beating winds. It’s been a long time since I felt so tossed by storms. And for that I am thankful as well.

Everyone goes through storms, it is part of our life on this earth.

I remember our former BSF teaching leader once said that if you were not going through a storm right now, you were coming out of a storm, or God was preparing you to go through a storm. It is inevitable, the Christian life does not exempt you from bad weather. Sometimes all we can do is batten down the hatches, hold on, and keep looking to the One who can calm the storm. God is our anchor, our life preserver.

But that doesn’t mean that there is not destruction of property. Or serious injury or casualties. Or that your firm foundation is not scoured down to the bedrock. 

All around me I see fall out from storms. In my Bible study circle of 30 women I can tell you a dozen or more seriously sad tales of hurt, tragedy, and illness with the ability to steal life. Dear friends and loved ones who have had hearts cracked wide open and turned upside down, leaving bits of their lives scattered in a debris field a mile long. Disappointments, depression and dysfunction. Struggles of every shape and size. Satan is having a field day.

But do you know what else I see? I see faith in action. People lifting each other up in prayer, giving hugs and listening ears. Others helping in practical ways. I see prayers being answered. Maybe not answered how we think is easiest, like healing or removing the problem, but in other ways. Strength is given, burdens are carried, peace is found. All while enduring the storm.

I’m thankful for bedrock.

I guess that is what I am most grateful for this season.

Have a thankful Thanksgiving.

 

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It was the week of Thanksgiving, and all through the house….

Happy week of Thanksgiving Y’All!

I believe I mentioned that the Thursday holiday has joophered up the BSF schedule. I will be heading over to leaders meeting shortly, and I am breathing a huge sigh of relief that I going with my completed lesson! BARELY.

Honey and I got quite a bit accomplished on Saturday and it was a good thing, not much was happening around here on Sunday. Went to church, had lunch, took a nap, and completed afore mentioned lesson. The End.

I was going to show you the spray painting things I did for The Ab-Cat’s bedroom. I then realized that I have the before and during shots, but alas, have no afters.

I will put that on my to do list, which is growing at the moment, in preparation of hosting the holiday.

Honey is reconsidering the wisdom of a November vacation as he was not 100% finished with his outside work before we left. He came home to leaves on the ground, a last lawn mowing, and frozen hoses, among other things. If any of you have been around here any length of time, unfinished outside work plays havoc with his Italian heritage. It rubs his finicky outdoor Day-go fur the wrong way.

Also, due to the monsoons we have been experiencing up here in The Mitten, he has already had to pump a good bit of pool water out, almost unheard of this early in the season.

We did make some headway in our disaster of a basement. It had become a sort of dumping ground, full of things I had brought home from my parents sold home this summer, containers full of household goods that each child wanted, the solar pool cover and three stacked lounge chairs.

There were also piles of things, waiting to be boxed and taken to our friendly, neighborhood Salvation Army.

Honey has been bringing me boxes home from work, so that step is now complete. They are still languishing in the basement though, awaiting their ride.

Cross that off my list Baby!!!

There is more purging to do, but I think it is after holiday work.

Have I mentioned that the weather has turned?

Oh.My.Word. It’s like someone flipped a switch and it is freaking FREEZING out there!

Teens and under. How rude.

In conversations with the Girls and The Boy and The Dane, we have agreed on our Introduction to Christmas Movie. Last year’s choice was The Grinch, the one with Jim Carrey, not the cartoon. The Girls suggested Elf.

While on the phone with The Boy, he asked if it could be The Grinch again, because evidently The Dane is not strong in Dr. Seuss, and he feels it is his duty to introduce her to the world of The Who’s. 

The Grinch it is!

And then he suggested that there is no rule that we could not watch Elf in addition!

Bring on the holiday!

Potent Quotable-Thankfulness

Who does not thank for little will not thank for much.  ~Estonian Proverb

Thou hast given so much to me,
Give one thing more, – a grateful heart;
Not thankful when it pleaseth me,
As if Thy blessings had spare days,
But such a heart whose pulse may be Thy praise.
~George Herbert

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. ~William Arthur Ward

Hem your blessings with thankfulness so they don’t unravel. ~Author Unknown

Colossians 3:17 ESV 

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

F-list

The first week home from vacation is behind us.

There is not much to show for it. We have GOT to get cracking on this Thanksgiving holiday thing.

We did buy the Butterball, it is quietly defrosting (hogging) on the majority of the bottom shelf in the fridge.

I have to clean for Caregroup this evening, so that is a good many steps in the right direction.

Our Caregroup chose the book of James to study. I like James, he has spoken good words to me in the past.

Daylight savings time is kicking my tail!

I wanted to go to bed last night at 7:30.

When I came upstairs from working yesterday at 3:30, it was already twilight.

Not the kind with vampires and bad acting either.

I am very relieved to have those great room couches ordered.

It was weighing on me. Lounging is very important in our family.

I was hoping that my desire to replace our more casual couches for less casual couches would not cause a comfort problem.

Honey approved it, so there shouldn’t be any lack of comfort fall out to land on my shoulders.

Wednesday and Thursday are the typical days that I go to my Bible study (BSF), so that means I was just there yesterday.

Due to Thanksgiving being on Thursday, we scootch class to Tuesday next week, and leaders meeting to Monday.

So that means I have to have my lesson done for leaders meeting by Monday. That is a very quick turn around for me considering that I don’t usually START my lesson until Monday.

I realize this is not really a huge problem. Mainly a time management issue.

On my mind nonetheless.

We highlighted Mousey’s hair just a little bit this week.

We are liking it very much! We will be sure to show you in the Thanksgiving pictures.

I also colored my skunk stripe this weekend. That is exciting to no one but me.

Honey hung The Ab-Cat’s new ceiling light and fan yesterday, and hung up the light in her bathroom that I spray painted. Did I ever tell you about that? Maybe Monday.

It looks loverly and I am going to call her room COMPLETED!

Or it will be after this weekend when I hang up the final curtain panel on her door wall and steam the whole kit and caboodle with The Oreo Mom’s graciously loaned steamer! I didn’t really want to iron all 6 panels!

The Oreo Mom is a handy gal to know! She has skills, equipment and such!

I wore my favorite Naples Goodwill purchase to BSF yesterday with already owned leggings and boots, and received many complements! One gal even said she was coveting!

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I don’t find the picture all that flattering, but Oh.My.Word, was it comfortable!

I actually had a pretty good run at The Goodwill this vacation, I don’t know if I mentioned that. Not as much as usual, but definitely good stuff! I will try and gather some up from all corners of the house to give you a peek.

Well, that is 500 words of information you didn’t even need to hear to survive. I hope you have a most loverly, pre Thanksgiving weekend!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Hello Hodgepodgers! Thanks for stopping by, if you would like to join us, head over to Joyce’s From This Side of the Pond by clicking the pretty button below and link up.

1. What lesson has failure taught you?

Perseverance, humility, and the realization that failure isn’t final. Move on, and do better.

2. What decision are you glad you made?
I am glad we finally ordered the new couches! We ended up going with one that was a little different than the one Capri Patt and I originally picked out, it looked very similar except it had a higher back and it wasn’t as deep. Honey thought it sat better. There was a flurry of texts, a picture and an emergency phone call to Capri P before the whole dilemma was settled. The decision is MADE! They should arrive in 6 to 10 weeks. Hallelujah and thank you Lord!

3. I’ve been a little bit surprised to see fully lit and decorated Christmas trees popping up for the past several weeks in friend’s Instagram feeds. So tell the truth-is your tree up and decorated, and if so when did that happen? If not, when will you be decking the halls?

Our tree is still in the box, in the basement, in pieces. I don’t want to think about decorating until after Thanksgiving! I used to put the tree up the weekend after, but I might be getting a little later start these days. I find I do less and less decorating as the years go by.

This cracked me up!

4. Solitaire-Poker-Rummy-Hearts-Go Fish-Old Maid…which game of cards would you most like to join?

I like rummy, we played a LOT of rummy in my youth!

5. This question comes to you courtesy of a Facebook friend, who once upon a time had a blog…When you’re feeling stressed do you snack a lot or are you more the ‘can’t eat’ type?

You know, I wish I was one of those types who could lose a few pounds under duress, but that is not how I roll. I don’t snack all the time either. My appetite seems to be like the U.S. Post Office.

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds. Three times a day Baby, like it’s my J.O.B!

6.  Have you ever reviewed a product or service on line? Was your review favorable or less than favorable?

I have not.

7. What was the best conversation you had yesterday?

I had a good conversation with Honey on our hour long drive to order our new couches! And then I had another one on the way home with The Boy and The Dane! They called to tell us good news!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

We are getting a Grandcat!!!!!

This is Seymour Glass, named after a character from J.D. Salinger’s stories.

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He is three months old. A precious little butterball. I want to kiss his sweet head.

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And he evidently is a big cuddle bunny, love bug and snuggle baby!

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He looks like our old kitty Indi. They take ownership on December 1. Welcome Seymour Glass, you precious little kitty witty boolie woolie!

Thanks for stopping by, have a good week!

Jiggedy Jig November 2012 Part 2

Back to Naples one last time for the year. Sad face.

We stayed at Bonita Bay this year and they have lots of special features, most that we never even got around to. We did greatly enjoy their beautifully landscaped walking/biking paths! They also have a beautiful access to the beach, that we finally got around to one evening, just past sunset. They have regular shuttles, but we drove over one evening after dinner. It was most loverly! There were groups of people gathered, one bunch looked like they had just enjoyed a potluck under a covered cabana, another bunch were sitting on the beach in the many beach chairs that are available for the Bonita Bay guests and their guests. They has an ice machine on the premise and a very nice bathroom, and you know that is near and dear to my heart.

It was windy, and dare I say it, chilly, down there so we did not linger long. It was more of a look see for future enjoyment.

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My boyfriend. I do have to tell you what happened when we left though. They had a shower just before you left so you could shower off your body or rinse the sand from your feet. Honey asked me if I wanted to stick my feet in and I said no because I had not been in the water, and it is my belief that if I had hosed them off, they would have gotten sandier. He likes to explore ALL options and try everything once so he went right over and put his feet by the faucet and turned on the water…..and was hit right in the head and chest with a blast of freezing cold water!!!! He thought he had turned on the foot wash but NOOOOOO, he almost showered fully clothed! And did I mention that it was chilly out there?

Oh.My.Word did we laugh!!!!!!!! We are still laughing when we think about it. We had tears in our eyes while he relayed the story to the Girls!

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Back at Bonita Bay, Honey found a new marina, or slip, or what have you. We had visited once before and he had noticed some pretty big fitch in the water. He decided to feed them with our left over bread. Those fish were not interested in that bread. Snobs.

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We realized we had barely taken any pictures and decided to try a selfie with the new little camera. The new little camera does not have the helpful feature of a twist around screen to show that you are on the right track with your selfie picture taking. Our first try.

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Tiny bit better. I then realized I had the zoom way up.

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There we go!

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We had a wonderful time together and look forward to the day Honey retires and we can stay for a few months!

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Mrs. Schmenkman and I married our spouses a week apart, 28 years ago. We often discuss how completely blessed we have been. I would like to say that we chose wisely, but I know it was all God. I am thankful for Honey and they life we have built together. He completes me.

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I read this post from Ann Voskamp this morning. I recognize the man in that post. He looks a lot like Honey.

That wraps up the Florida vacation for 2013. See you tomorrow.

Jiggedy Jig November 2013

The Girls picked us up from the airport on Saturday afternoon. Vacation is officially over. There is a doctor appointment this morning laundry has begun, and there is a bathroom to be cleaned. Yep, very over.

I was able to download my little camera the old fashioned way, with a cord like my old camera!!!!

I have missed the italics feature. Cutting and pasting and italics and boldness escape me on the iPad.

Here are some of the pictures I mentioned, in no particular order. Random shots of our dinner at The Cheesecake Factory. We usually get this. Delish.

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Honey got all frisky and tried the chicken and biscuit. He liked it a lot, as did I when I had his leftovers for lunch a couple days later!

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The mystery is why we didn’t take a picture of the Aunt Linda’s Fudge Cake that came next. I guess we were too busy chowing it down. Really spellcheck? Now you take issue with chowing? Raise your hand if you think chowing is a word.

Last Tuesday, Honey and his friend Alaska Bob went fitching. They caught fitches!

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He said mostly around 10 pound Red fish.

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If you need more info than that, you are going to have to call Honey and speak with him directly.

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This was one he had never caught before. I think. A baby shark of some kind that I already forgot. Looks a little hammer head-ish, but it had a different name. I fully expect SOMEONE to correct me here.

Honey has mentioned a time or a hundred, that he wished he would have turned Mr. Shark around. Regrets, he’s had a few.

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This is the back of our condo complex. It backs up to a golf course. It is also where Honey had his first UP CLOSE look at the gator who lives in that water. He locked eyeballs with it the first day we arrived and then spent the rest of his time looking for it again so he could show me that he really did see a gator!

Honey fished back here a couple times. Never had a bite.

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After about a week there was a commotion and we looked out back to see this!

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Old Wally Gator had caught himself a big fish! He had his lunch in front of an audience, then slipped back into the water. Shudder.

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Every sunny day there were lots of turtles sunbathing on this white thing in the pond. Every day I said I was going to take a picture of their crowded beach and every day I forgot. The day I remembered the beach was nearly empty. One lone turtle backside. They were fairly big turtles, so we figured the gator wasn’t very hungry and lived with them fairly peacefully.

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I have some more for tomorrow.

Go forth and do Monday.

Potent Quotable

Where we love is home,
Home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes

F-List

Hi Guys!

Last full day of vacation and as usual, mixed feelings. It will be ever so hard to leave sunny, warm Bonita Bay, but I miss our People and a few fat cats. That’s life!

How about a random list?

The Girls have had consistent hot water for a week now! With no more pipe clanking!

True story. Honey asked me if I knew of a plumber, I said I did not. He said he could only think of one, a guy named Mitch that we went to church with about 18 years ago and haven’t seen since. Then while on the phone with my brother Beeve, he asked the same question. Beeve said there was a guy who used to be in his Bible study named Mitch, who had helped him with some stuff. Beeve did some legwork and had the guy call Honey when he returned from his vacation in Florida. It was the SAME guy!!! Small world!

I introduced Honey to Chipolte yesterday, he liked it!! He is already thinking about how to duplicate it at home.

Speaking of Honey and food, I got him to read the book I was telling you all about last week, The School of Essential Ingredients. He read it all in one day and said it was a “girl book”, but he liked how they talked about food, just like I knew he would!

This condo is fine, but I miss our bed and couch.

I am sure I am not surprising anyone when I say that we have not figured out how to put pictures from my new camera onto the iPad. Not because of difficulty, mainly lack of trying.

Florida makes you lazy.

Honey spotted the gator again and made me look at it! We have pictures, they will have to wait until we get home!

Honey caught fitch when he went fitChing with his friend Bob. We have pictures, they will have to wait until we get home!

Spell check will not let me spell fItching any other way above, but it let me here. Go figure.

We have really liked Bonita Bay!

We looked at a similar type place yesterday down by Marco Island called Fiddlers Point or Creek or something. It was nice but not nearly as pretty.

We both agree the eating has GOT to stop! 🙂

I did a little thrifting, but not nearly as much as when Mousey is with us!

I will show you pictures when I get home!

When we were here last year, the news was ALL about the election. This year it is ALL about Obamacare.

I think it is going to be hard to transition from 80 degree temps to under 40. And sometimes under 30. Just a thought.

You know your vacation is almost over when you find your mind thinking about what you need to do when you get back.

Things like holidays, doctor appointments, cleaning up your basement, ordering your new couches.

Honey has already mentioned to The Ab-Cat that we will dining at Chip and Dip on the way home from the airport. Fine by me!

I think we have already made the decision where our last meal here will be. Unless it changes, cause that happens too.

So really, it’s either Enrico’s or anywhere in the whole anywhere kingdom!

Next time you hear from me I will be back inside The Mitten. Under layers of clothing, like The Michelin Man.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Hi Guys! Thanks for stopping by. Many thanks to  our leader Joyce, who has gathered us together 150 times for the Hodgepodge!

1. Describe a typical Sunday from your childhood.

We always got up and went to church, I know that! When I was younger we usually had Sunday dinner at home. I always loved the smell of a roast in the oven when we walked in the door. We did start eating out on Sundays when I was older. After dinner we just played until we had to go BACK to church Sunday night. That is certainly something that a lot of churches don’t do anymore.

I didn’t usually mind unless there was something really good on tv, like one of those specials that only came on once a year, like The Wizard of Oz or a holiday special.  Our kids can’t comprehend waiting a whole year to watch something special in their  always had a DVD world! I did ALWAYS want to watch The Wonderful World of Disney, the fireworks and Tinkerbell in the beginning were always so tantalizing!

2. How comfortable are you with uncertainty? Explain.

Fairly. It seems like we live in an uncertain world, and our family life has always had an edge of uncertainty regarding situations and health. I think we have always tried to do the best we could with what we had at the moment and let God handle all the other variables. It’s not a bad thing to acknowledge you are uncertain about life, but it would be bad if I were not certain of who holds my future.

3. What have you accomplished recently that might be described as crafty, as in ‘arts and crafts’ crafty? If crafty doesn’t work for you, how about handy? Or both?

I don’t know that it was crafty, but it was sort of handy.  I painted 3 bedrooms ans a bathroom last month in preparation for our new carpeting. I had help from Capri P  painting and decorating The Ab-Cats’s room and bath, but the other two were on my own. I wasn’t going to tackle them so quickly but I am SO glad I did!

4. Have you ever worked in a ‘food place’? What did you take away from the experience?

i have been a waitress twice, in very different types of establishments, so I would say I have some experience. The first was at a Friendly’s in our town. It was a lot of fun working with mostly young people like myself. I discovered I was a good waitress and pretty good with people.

The second was a hotel restaurant in Windsor, Ontario, shortly after Honey and I married.  That was a VERY interesting experience! It was a German restaurant and had a pretty specific clientele of German Canadians who liked to gather regularly and do German-y things, like drink and sing!

The hotel was owned by two men who were as different as night and day. Raymond (Ry-Moond)  from Germany, and his OBNOXIOUS  wife Jutta (Uta), and quiet, artistic Robert (Robert) From Austria. This was a very important point for him, he would correct you if you said he was German. Robert was the chef and ran a very precise and delicious kitchen staffed with mainly recent immigrants from Europe. There was only one other waitress for whom english was her native tongue.

Peter the chef was from Poland. His wife was a dancer, he was funny.  His sous chef was Zolt (Jolt) from Hungary, who was young and fun and liked to talk about bands and music. An older woman came in every afternoon to make strudel. she was from Germany and she taught me to make coffee with cold water always! I cannot remember her name.

The girls I knew the best were the other two waitresses, Suzy and Maria, both from Hungary, by way of Austria, each married and each had one child.  They had experienced such different lives  from my own. I liked talking with them and hearing about their lives.  I moved to another country to be with my husband, they left for much more dire reasons.

The last person was Gerhardt, the only other American in the joint. He drove over every weekend from Ann Arbor, Michigan to play accordion and visit with his countrymen and women. He told me about his family and grand kids, and that he was forced to be a soldier in Hitler’s army when he was fifteen.  He said it was awful and he hid a lot. He died before I left. I was glad to have met him.

I guess what I took away from that experience was a glimpse into the life of an immigrant. They so wanted a safe and better place to call home, to have opportunity to work, and work hard, for what they had, and a sweet sense of humor while doing it all without complaining.

I quit when we moved back to Michigan and never saw any of them again. I heard from Honey’s sister Rachel and brother in law Kenny that the place burned down years ago. I hope they are all doing well.

5. Cold turkey, talk turkey, what a turkey…in recent days, which turkey phrase or idiom best applies to you and why? Click on the word turkey if you need to read more about the meaning behind each phrase.

Talk turkey, and for reasons that will remain undisclosed!

6. If you could have any one guest join your Thanksgiving dinner table, who would it be?

It would have to be my Mama, or her Mama, can I have two, pretty please? And can you transport them from heaven?

7. What is one thing you must accomplish today?

Well, the hardest accomplishment we have had here in Florida has been choosing where to have dinner! Other than that, shaving my legs?!

8. Insert your own random thought here.

Honey went fishing with his friend Bob yesterday in Cape Coral and they dropped me off at a nearby Panera, where I was picked up by Capri Patt!!! It was SO fun being with her in Floridy! The best part of the whole day  was getting text updates from Capri Deb about the birth of her new TWIN grand babies that morning!

Thanks for stopping by!

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