Friday, May 30, 2008

Ramblings...Stream of Consciousness

I'm sitting in the library staring at a blank page. I don't exactly have writer's block; but, nothing is coming easily to my mind this morning. I'm going to do a little stream of consciousness writing like we did in college. Have you ever done that? It's just writing whatever thoughts come into your mind. The idea behind it is to get you writing something, anything, to push through the blank page problem and get your mind working.

I remember when I was younger, thinking that I think best with a pencil in my hand, or a pen, or now a keyboard! It's almost as though the very act of moving my fingers helps me to think more clearly, to focus my thoughts. I think that is why I also enjoy needlework. When I quilt, for instance, I am able to lose myself deep within my thoughts as my fingers move meditatively through the motions of making the tiny stitches. The stitches must be tiny, not toenail catchers, as my quilting teacher told me. My grandma used to look at the back of the quilt to examine the stitches better and see how close they were.

I was up late last night crocheting another washcloth. I'm going to pin my husband down and have him show me how to put the photos on the computer so that I can offer them in the Shop.
I've also got an idea or two for a couple of new items that I'm going to try to work up over the next few days. Be watching....

Blessings to you!

Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

May I suggest?

Monday, May 26, 2008

My Day Book

Outside my window... a light rain. It rained all night. Everything is so lush. I can see a bird flying about and the song of a few more.

I am thinking... I've got to get ready for that yard sale! I'm in more of a mess than I started with. There is just too much stuff in this house!

I am thankful that... my oldest son is home from school for a few days.

I am wearing... blush-my nightgown.

I am creating... this blog and this blog and more items for my shop.

I am going... nowhere that I know of. Happy dance!

I am reading... Calm my Anxious Heart, Linda Dillow...still. I've also started 1776. I cannot remember the author. I'm terrible about reading several books at a time! ~smile~

I am hoping... to go for a walk this morning. The air is so cool and fresh.

I am hearing... my children stirring about the house as they wake up late after a late night interrupted by the sounds of the thunderstorm.

Around the house... there's much work to do after the three day weekend. The laundry is piled high!

One of my favorite things... my rice bag. I have a rectangular bag that my daughter sewed for me. It's filled with white rice. I heat it in the microwave for a minute and a half, then put it on my aching back. It's a big help to me.

A Few Plans for the Rest of the Week... cleaning, reading, de-cluttering, cooking, sewing, crocheting, my first trip to the farmers' market, I hope.

God bless you!
Laura of Harvest Lane

Happily Ever After....

This is my Lowell. He's the man whom I've been living my happily ever after with for the past 22 years. We have had good years and bad years, good months and bad months, good weeks and bad weeks, good days and bad days. We are committed until death do us part to live all of our remaining years, months, weeks, and days matter what!
That is what makes this our happily ever after...not our circumstances but our commitment to each other and to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Shared at Marriage Monday.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Word is Alive!

"Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and sympathetic?" Phil. 2:1

I think that having friends is one of God's most loving ways of giving us encouragement. Friends can give a listening ear, a word of encouragement, an understanding nod, a compassionate hug, a card or letter at just the right moment, a gentle word of reproof, just being there during a difficult time. Our best friends speak our names in prayer to our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let us be that kind of friends. Speak your friends' names in prayer.

Now, go see what our hostess, Peggy has to say!

Monday, May 19, 2008

My Day Book

Outside my window... the breeze is blowing the leaves and branches. The sky is partly cloudy. All in all, it's a beautiful Spring day.

I am thinking... I really must get started on my to do list! I'm so glad school is almost out for my teenager. We will continue a shortened homeschool schedule for the others...Bible, math, an hour of silent reading, and language arts. I'm sure we'll do some read aloud also.

I am thankful that... we had friends with us to help us when our car broke down two hours from home over the weekend. Good friends are one of life's best treasures.

From the kitchen... Salad for lunch, "Stuff", a meatloaf /vegetable dish for dinner, and I may make a batch of brown sugar granola.

I am wearing... a blue denim dress with embroidery on the bodice and my feet are still in my fuzzy slippers.

I am creating... I plan to crochet a bit on a cotton dish cloth for my shop. I hope to take a look at a skirt pattern that my daughter wants to try to make.

I am going... to run a couple of errands this afternoon.

I am reading... Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow, and Philippians chapter 4.

I am hoping... that I can embody Philippians 4:4 today..."Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say, rejoice." If Paul can encourage us thusly while in prison chains, can I not rejoice in my comfortable home?

I am hearing... my children singing a silly song that they made up to sing while working..."If we're cheerful and put a smile on our face, this kitchen won't be a disgrace." They sing it in high, squeeky, silly voices. It's hard on the ears, but the smiles are worth it!

Around the house... I bought a couple of cherry tomato plants yesterday. I hope to get them planted today. I also have a very long to do list!

One of my favorite things... quiet, blessed quiet!

A Few Plans for the Rest of the Week... I'll be working to prepare for a garage sale. I ran out of time last week. I really want to do this as soon as possible. It will just be too hot soon.

Now go check out the other Day Book entries at our hostess Peggy's blog, The Simple Woman.
God bless!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

On Being A Child...

I had a most delightful experience this afternoon. I went to the park, sat on the ground, and watched my children, ages 6-17 climb an enormous tree. My son told me it was a sugar maple. The branches were perfect for climbing and massive enough to hold them all at once without a sigh.

After awhile, I called my six year old over and began to show her how to make a chain with clover flowers. I was thrilled that I figured out how to close the chain. As we were finishing the first chain, my little one said, "I'm going to remember this forever." Goodness, how that touched this momma's heart!

We made chains for some time, teaching my other children how to do it, also. Then, four little girls, ages 5-7, came over to see what we were doing. I offered to teach them, too. None of them had seen a clover flower chain before! It was a tender moment for me as I passed on a "skill" of girlhood to all of these children, my own, and the others.

I wonder how much has been lost on this generation and the last.... I always wanted to learn jacks, but never had anyone to teach me. I always wanted to learn to shoot marbles, but never had anyone to teach me.

I am aware now that I must think about these little things, simple pleasures, simple pastimes, and pass these along to my children along with the many other things that I teach them.
Bless God for this wonderful afternoon and wonderful reminder of how pleasant the little things can be.

Carpe diem!
Seize the Day!
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

May I suggest?


Thursday, May 15, 2008

A Simple Devotion...Philippians 4:4-8

Image Copyright 2013 Amy Lane Photography
 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
Philippians 4:8

Philippians 4 has a treasure trove of verses that I have clung to during difficult times. I really needed this reminder to go back and read and think about these verses again. I heard Thelma Wells speak about verse 6 a few years ago. She used the version that says "Be anxious for nothing...", only she very adamantly and enthusiastically pronounced it...

"Be anxious for NO THING..."
Good point, eh?
The part of the chapter that really stands out to me states in NIV,
"4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!
Gee, how would my life change if I really rejoiced ALWAYS?
5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
This gal definitely needs to learn to be more gentle.
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Talk about life changing! I need to not only have this memorized, but internalized. 
7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
I have been down and lacking peace all week. Now I remember where to find it. 
Bless God for bringing me this encouragement just when I needed it. May God bless you, dear Reader, as you seek for Him with your whole heart.

Bless you!
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage
Happy at Home


Monday, May 12, 2008

My Birthday Daybook

For My Birthday May 12th...

Outside My Window... lots of green grass and trees, a pile of branches from the ice storm a couple of months ago that need to be burned.

I am thinking... about reaching middle age, about my life, things I like about it, things I don't, things I'd like to change, who I am, what does God want to do in my life?

I am thankful that... the terrible destructive tornadoes, that killed many in Southwest Missouri and Northeast Oklahoma and destroyed untold numbers of homes, Saturday missed us. God has mercifully protected us. I feel spoiled and humbled by His protection.

From the kitchen... I'm off kitchen duty today! My dear friend Beth took me out for a big breakfast and a much needed chat, the kids got their own peanut butter sandwiches for lunch, and my husband is taking me out to my favorite restaurant for dinner. My Emily will be making me a birthday cake sometime this afternoon, too.

I am wearing... An old faded peach flowered dress that is just so comfortable. I dressed for breakfast; and I'll dress for lunch. But, for now, I'm just being comfy in my bare feet.

I am creating... I started another crocheted dishcloth last night. I'd like to get some photos taken of the different items I've made so that I can put some more items in my shop. I may work on scrapbook pages for my children's books this week also. The recipe below is one that will be included in the cookbook that I'm writing.

I am going... to dinner with my husband to celebrate my birthday.

I am reading... Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow.

I am hoping... for a little more stability in my life soon.

I am hearing... very little, the hum of the lawn mower, a car driving by. My kids are lying on their beds napping or reading for an hour.

Around the house... I am enjoying the smell of peaches from my tart warmer.

One of my favorite things... the new Hershey's Bliss dark chocolate that I tried this weekend.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:
more decluttering to get ready for a yard sale. I think it will be postponed for a week or two. It's supposed to be Friday; but, I think I'm going to need more time to be ruthless. I want to really pare things down. I have a dear friend who is my cheerleader in this. After I get through some of this stuff, I think she's going to come over and help me get rid of more so that 
I can live with less!

I'm not sharing a picture thought this week because I've been trying for at least 15 minutes; and, I cannot get it to work! I give up! ~grin~
Now go check out the other Day Book entries at our hostess Peggy's blog, The Simple Woman.

God bless!

Spicy Bean Soup

Spicy Bean Soup

2 lbs red beans
2 onions, chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic
1 green pepper, chopped
olive oil
2 cans Rotel
2 T salt or to taste
4 T chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin (optional)
Saute onion, garlic. and green pepper in small amount of olive oil.
Add beans and enough water to cover 3-4 inches (more if you like a lot of broth). Do not add salt or tomatoes at this time. These ingredients will prevent the beans from softening.
Bring to a boil and simmer around 3 hours, or until the beans are soft. After the beans are soft enough for your taste, add the Rotel; I use the store brand. Add the chili powder and salt also to taste. Sometimes I'll add a little cumin or taco seasoning.
We like this with cornbread, or homemade bread and butter. You could also eat it with tortilla or corn chips.
I hope you enjoy it!

Happy at Home
May I suggest?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

I Love a Rainy Day!

We are having the most beautiful day here in Southwest Missouri. A gentle spring rain has been falling since early this morning. Many folks just don't like rainy days. Sometimes it seems like rainy days just spoil our plans. Many many years ago I made a choice. I chose to embrace the rainy days, to enjoy them as fully as I can. I love living in a house with an overhanging roof. It allows me to open the windows in all but the worst of storms. I love listening to the rain as it falls. To me, it's such a calm, peaceful, restful sound. Of course, sometimes we have quite a storm. I'm always glad my Lowell is home when it gets loud. I used to have quite a fear of thunderstorms. I grew up in Topeka, Kansas, where thunderstorms often meant a trip to the basement. Over the years, I've come to fear them less. I think we must if we are to show faith in God's protection to our children.

I'm trying to teach my children to enjoy rainy days as well. Their favorite part is that we often bake on rainy days. My 10 year old daughter is currently mixing up a loaf of bread in the breadmaker. She is enjoying learning to bake. She just begged me to let her make brownies today; but, alas, we used all of the eggs for scrambled eggs this morning! Bread was her next best option. I think I'm going to try to make a nice fish chowder this evening with some fish I have in the freezer. I made it once before and it was delicious. Now, if I can just find the recipe!

Enjoy your day, rain or shine!

Laura of Harvest Lane
Happy at Home
May I suggest?

Momma Laura's Homemade-From-Scratch Fudgy Brownies

Monday, May 5, 2008

My Day Book

FOR TODAY May 5th...

Outside My Window...darkness.
I'm writing late at night before I go to bed.

I am thinking...
What am I doing up this late?

I am thankful for...
A cozy safe house to sleep in.

From the kitchen...
Homemade cocoa today and a pot roast.

I am wearing...
A knit purple knit jumper and a blue t-shirt.
It should be my nightgown. ~wink~

I am creating...
This new blog.

I am going...
Nowhere. It was a day at home.

I am reading...
Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow.

I am hoping...
To get lots of work done this week now that my sprained ankle is healing.

I am hearing...
The hum of the computer, the fan, and the television in the background.

Around the house...
My husband is watching something on television; the children are snug in their beds.

One of my favorite things...
Lilacs. I've loved seeing and smelling them the last couple of weeks.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:
Catching up on school decluttering for a yard sale.

Now, go check out the other Day Book entries at our hostess Peggy's blog, The Simple Woman.
God bless!
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage...Happy at Home

Friday, May 2, 2008

My Thrifty Shopping Spree

Our town is enveloped in yard sale fever this weekend. It's the annual city garage sale. I have been trying to clean out the clutter lately. I decided to wait a couple of more weeks for my sale to give myself time to go through as much as possible. I went to several sales today and got some gifts, a nice pink check jumper for my 10 year old daughter, some candles, some great books, and a few fun odds and ends. I limited myself to those things I really thought we'd use. My favorite find was a red painted wooden sign lettered, "Always Kiss Me Goodnight." I've seen these country primitive style signs before; and, I just really like them.

Are you cleaning out for a yard sale?
I'd love to hear from you here on my new blog.

I'm still blogging at Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage for a little while longer.

Eventually, I'll just be blogging here.

God bless and have a beautiful weekend!

Laura of Harvest Lane
Happy at Home