Friday, May 27, 2022

Saturday Scriptures: Finding The Light


This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. 
I John 1:5

There are times in our world when we stand and shake our heads in disbelief. There are times in our personal lives when we hold our heads and cry. There are times when things happen and we just don't understand why. At times like these, we can trust God and know that He is light and there is no darkness in Him. 

Trusting can be hard to do. 

I rely upon my faith and trust that God does have a plan for our lives  and that it is a good plan. I trust that I am never alone and neither is anyone else. God is ever present in all of our lives.

Why, then, do bad things happen?

This question is centuries old. And, I don't have all the answers. We live in a fallen world. There is sin in our world. There is evil in our world. We may feel at times that evil has won. But, it hasn't. 

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
I Corinthians 13:12

 Here is what I know and believe.
God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all. 
May you feel God's love and light in your life today. 

Blessings and Peace,

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Feeling My Heart Break

 Hello dear readers,

No pretty pictures today. My heart is not in it. Today, I am just sharing my heartbreak over the loss of little children and teachers in Uvalde, TX at the hands of a gunman. 

And, along with others who have said it before me, I am asking, "What are we doing?" 

These were little children, precious little lives, the same ages as kids I taught for over 30+ years. And they were gunned down. Their innocent lives cut short. It makes me sick to think about it. 

I can picture the classroom because, you see, I taught in one for many years. I can picture the movement of the kids around the classroom, all excited because they had an awards ceremony earlier in the day. The teachers were trying, I am sure, to find things to keep the kids occupied, learning and busy after such an exciting day. I can hear the talking, the laughter, the kidding around that teachers do with their students. Excitement was running high because there were only a few days left before summer break. And then, appearing at the door....a crazed individual who has already killed his own grandmother. 

I can picture the fear on those kids' faces. The fear on the teachers' faces. I've been through the lockdown drills many times and, as teachers, we all knew what we were supposed to do. I remember, as an itinerant teacher who moved from school to school, being in a school when there was a drill that I didn't know ahead of time was going to happen. I sat huddled in the dark in the corner of that classroom with the student I had been testing thinking this was a real lockdown and wondering how I would protect that child if a gunman came through the door. 

And you know that thought was on those teachers' minds, at Robb Elementary, in the split seconds they had to react when that gunman came through the door. 

But tell does one does one protect a classroom full of children....against AR 15 semi-automatic rifles that belong on a battlefield and not in the hands of an 18 year old??!!

I'm sick of it. 

I don't care if I'm trampling on your political beliefs right now. 

This has got to stop.

We need gun control laws in this country and we need them now. Why should any average American need these types of weapons?

How many innocent lives need to be snuffed out in order for our leaders to do what they ALL know is the right thing to do? 

Oh yes, here it comes.  The age old argument. It's our Constitutional Right to bear arms. 

Yes it is. 

But, is it our Constitutional Right to bear assault rifles that are used by soldiers on the battlefields? Do we need those kind of weapons to go hunting? Do we need those kind of weapons to protect ourselves? These are the big arguments that are always given when no legislation is passed when these mass shootings happen. Did our founding fathers want all Americans to have AK-15's???

I'm sick of it. Of hearing these same arguments over and over. People who say, "It's not guns who kill people, it's people who kill people." 

Tell that to those little children cowering in that classroom watching their classmates get gunned down before it was their turn. Tell that to those teachers reaching out to grab kids and shield as many as possible while facing the gunman head on. 

Tell that to those families screaming in agony in the school parking lot when they learned it was their child who wasn't coming home. 

I'm sick of it.  Of turning on the TV to see that yet another shooting has taken churches, synagogues, grocery stores, schools. 

I'm sick of it and I'll say it again...

We need gun legislation in this country and we need it now. 

But you can rest assured that the NRA and many politicians (yes, mostly Republican ones) are already working to make certain it won't happen. 

Please be in prayer for the families who are suffering right now. 

Until Saturday Scriptures, 

Friday, May 20, 2022

A Return To Saturday Scriptures


Scripture from Thessalonians to encourage one another
Created by Debbie Ross on Canva

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
I Thessalonians 5:11

Hello friends!  I am excited to announce that I am returning to doing a "Saturday Scriptures" post at least during the summer months. We will take it a few months at a time and see how it goes. Today's scripture from Thessalonians really speaks to my heart as I have had a week that has brought physical pain from a rib injury and with it came an overwhelming feeling of discouragement. Have you ever been in a similar situation? It might not have been a physical injury but, perhaps, a hurt of another kind that just seemed to cause the day (or days) to be cloudy and gray and you just felt like sitting down and crying. 

That's how I have felt this week. 

I was looking forward to doing all sorts of things around the house and, instead, I have been sitting around feeling pain and wondering if I am becoming "old" before my time. My feelings of discouragement came to  a point yesterday when I finally reached out to ask for help, calling on friends to pray for me. Their kind words, prayers and texts and emails helped to lift me from my gloominess and gave me hope that better days are ahead. And, indeed, today has been a better day not only in terms of pain relief but in terms of my mood and how I feel about myself. Hope is there today that wasn't there yesterday. 

I Thessalonians 5:11 tells us that encouraging others is important. And you know what? Encouragement can come in many forms and it doesn't have to cost a cent. Calling someone, writing them a card, note or letter, sending an email or text are all ways to reach out to someone to offer them words of love, healing and hope. Of course there are other ways to offer encouragement that take a little more time, effort (and money) such as sending or taking a person flowers or preparing them a meal. The key here is to think about how one can offer encouragement. It can mean the world to others. And, I believe that offering words of encouragement in addition to praying for the person is very important. 

I certainly know that the encouragement and prayers I received this week has meant the world to me. 

I feel like there are dual blessings to be found when we encourage each other. The person who gives encouragement is as blessed as the receiver. It's a wonderful feeling. And it's wonderful to follow the will of God in such a beautiful way. 

So, when have you given encouragement? When have you received encouragement? I hope you will share in the comments. I love hearing from you!

Be Blessed,

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Casual Top, Pants and Jewelry for Spring And Summer Fashion

 Casual Fashion for Spring and Summer

Hello casual fashion lovers! Today, I've put together a styling for you to show the possibilities of looking put-together and stylish for all of your Spring and Summer activities. Whether you are lunching with friends, running errands or having a fun shopping afternoon, this outfit will take you there!

Nothing I'm wearing here is super expensive. The top is a casual tee by Chico's that I bought on sale a few years ago. I love anything pink and the little gold sailboats on the top give it a little something extra. V-necks are also universally flattering on women, I think.

The off-white pants were thrifted and are by Land's End. They are sort of a brushed, soft corduroy style and are my go-to pants for comfort. They have an elastic waist which also adds to the comfort factor. I am wearing lots of elastic waist pants these days as they are comfy and forgiving. 

The sandals I'm wearing are new and I bought them for a song at Hamrick's, which is one of our local outlet type stores. The brand is new to me (Ingaro Sport) and I am really liking them. I love the interesting bands and the white color goes with anything. I wore them to church this morning with this blue skirt and white top and they were perfect! They are also very comfortable and are not high arched. I have noticed that a lot of sandals have the arch really high and located in the wrong place for my type of foot. These Ingaro sandals are perfect. 

If you're out and about, you might want to add some pretty jewelry to accent your casual outfit. I chose a light pink stretchy bracelet and this lovely lovely gold with purple bead flowers bracelet that I purchased years ago from the lovely Katherine of The pink bracelet is one I bought from a trip to Colorado several years ago. I love pink and purple together!

And of course some pretty earrings complete the look. These polka dot round padded post earrings reminded me of the seventies/eighties when I found them in a local shop and thrifted them. I'm wearing more post-type earrings lately and these give such a fun retro vibe to this casual look. 

So, what tops and pants are in your closet that you could wear to put together a casual outfit for Spring or Summer? What shoes are on the floor of your closet that would match well with that top and pants? And now, head to your jewelry box and find some fun pieces to accessorize. You're ready to head out the door and have a fun afternoon! 

Be sure to tell me all about it in the comments. Can't wait to hear from you!

Until Next Time,

Saturday, May 14, 2022

A Rhododendron and Azalea Tea Party On The Foyer Table

 Rhododendrons and Azaleas Have A Tea Party

Hey everyone!  Are you looking for a simple vignette for a small table or center piece in your home? You may need to just take a walk around your yard to find the ingredients for a lovely tea party themed vignette. 

We are very lucky to have some beautiful rhododendron and azalea plants blooming right now on our land. I took a cutting from each of these plants on a little walkabout today and thought about how I would like to style them. 

The idea of creating a tea party using this beautiful tea pot and a white tea cup came to mind. The tea set became the perfect vases for the azalea and rhododendron blooms. 

And the little violin playing angel seemed like the perfect final touch to this vignette. 

This is what the top and bottom shelves of the foyer table look like together. It's lovely to see a new vignette on the foyer table for Mid-May. I hope these lovely blooms last a long time. 

Are you creating any vignettes in your home? Are you enjoying beautiful Spring blooms? Be sure to leave a comment. 

The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. Isaiah 58:11

Until Next Time,

Friday, May 6, 2022

Flowers, Inside and Out

 Time For Flowers

Hi friends!  I'm back from my travels and I've got my gardening gloves on and am ready to enjoy some flowers both inside and outside of our house. You' re invited to come along as I choose flowers, bring them home and get them planted. 

The Mr. and I decided to do a "trial run" starting with a few plants and seeing how they do with our bear and deer visitors to our backyard. 

The Mr. is also working on getting the little lawn we have to look a little greener. We got plenty of soil for our projects. 

And here is how this arrangement of planters looks. I like how The Mr. put the round planter on top of the square planters for a bit of an artistic arrangement! As you can see I went with orange/pink and white lantana, purple coleus and one container of an orange impatiens. Last year I was able to have huge impatiens plants without the deer eating them. We'll see if this year is the same. Impatiens are my favorite outdoor plant, especially the New Guinea variety, so I would love to plant more of them this year! So far, so good!

And, on my recent trip to see family, I had occasion to visit a lovely store in the mall that sold all sorts of home decor. I decided to buy this pretty candle ring and it is now in our living room gracing our side table. I love the yellow flowers for Spring and Summer. It is so cheerful. 

And continuing with the yellow theme, I wanted to share these pretty yellow mums that The Mr. gave me. They are starting to look a little spindly but are still oh so pretty. I like the yellow and white plaid wrapper, also!

So, that's it for flowers both inside and outside of my home! How about you? Are you planting any flowers or bringing any flowers into your homes? Be sure to share in the comments about flowers, or anything else, you would like to share. And Happy Mother's Day on Sunday for all you lovely Moms and ladies who have loved and mothered others (including fur babies)!!

Until Next Time,