Thursday, February 11, 2016

Sticky Snow

We had sticky snow.
So, so pretty.
This snow stuck to the trees for a long time.

Finally yesterday the winds picked up and huge clumps of 
snow were blowing and falling to the ground.

It reminds me of cake icing on the photo above.

Very pretty....very cold.
And all we needed.
For sure.
Spring is welcome at any time.

It won't be this week, though.
We are headed to single digits overnight.
Makes one very thankful for a warm cozy home
and a comfy bed with efficient comforters.

Now, to just convince our cat, Oliver, that he is better off inside
each night.  It isn't up for debate, really....
but he tries.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Special Dinner and Georgia's Orchids

Last evening we had dinner with Warren's mother, Chelsea, Chadd, Pastor Mike and his wife, Jenny. It was wonderful.  We used to have "family" dinners all of the time but you know how it goes. Schedules shift and people get busy.  We really need to make an effort to schedule them and just enjoy whoever is available that evening.

Anyway, after dinner talk turned to an orchid that Mike and Jenny had given Georgia a little over a year ago.  It turns out that Georgia is an orchid whisperer.  This plant has grown so that she had to replant it three times.  Right now it has amazing blooms on two stems.

Some close ups.
I was amused that Mike and Jenny want some of these to 
appear on our church bulletins.

 They are so supportive of others.
Both of Georgia's ability to help this orchid blossom
and of my meager photography skills.

I used PicMonkey to tweak these.

Such fun it is when we bring our unique gifts and personalities together.

The conversation that followed dinner and a delicious orange cake for dessert
was the faithfulness of God during the years we have known each other
and been part of our church.

We shared many of the direct interventions we saw God do to sustain
this group of Believers with Georgia and Jenny who weren't 
there for all of it.

It's the real deal.
It is uplifting and necessary.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Losing the Dizzies and Getting Back Into the Swing of Things

Whew!  This was my worst episode of vertigo ever.  And I started getting episodes of it in my 20's so I know a bit about vertigo.  But a trip to the doctor and a strong course of steroids seems to be knocking it out.  Unfortunately this was not the kind that can be fixed by either of the series of maneuvers that helps if the crystals are displaced.  This was from clogged tubes in my inner ear.  I've heard of many, many cases of it right now and suspect that it is a part of the current virus that is going around.   Whatever the case it is so good to be able to walk without fear again.  I'm still being cautious about looking up and down since they are still triggers.  On Sunday I looked up to see a plane going over and ended up falling onto the hood of our van and holding on for dear life.  That's how Warren found me.  Haha.  I was so glad he came along to help me get into the house.  It is just so weird to feel like your body is trying to throw you to the ground as hard as it can.  But I know many of you suffer from this as well and it is more of a nuisance than a danger.  I just take a lot of care to have something to grab onto so that I don't fall down steps or somewhere else where I might get hurt.

Yesterday I was so thankful to be able to go to Change of Pace.  That Bible study is so good.  It was strange, though, to have a newspaper photographer in our faces as we led worship.  I'm "in our faces".  Worries me for what might appear in our local paper this weekend.  However, it is that our local paper is interested in this community study.  They are fascinated at the fact that this many ladies from so many churches have gathered together for years and years to sing, pray and study The Word together.  I hope lots and lots more ladies see the article and come out to join us!  Any humiliation is worth that.

My small group is bonding and learning together.  This study on the Armor of God is practical and so helpful in times of frustration and stress.  I found myself worrying about being late yesterday and words from the lessons come back to keep my stresses well under control.  When our small group sat around our table we talked about having an action plan for those times when we are attacked with doubt, worry or fear.  Due to the Winter storm we had last week we weren't able to meet to talk about the Belt of Truth and so that was our subject yesterday.  For all of us who tend to worry it is so key that we already have that belt on our spiritual waist so that we are able to withstand those attacks by employing the truths established in the Word. Some have special verses they turn to which they shared with us.  At least two came from the book of Isaiah.  I love that Old Testament remains relevant to us.  Oh, so relevant.

Last evening we headed over to Chelsea and Chadd's new apartment to do some work on the bathroom.  Chadd moved in Monday and so we have been over there a good bit.  Chelsea worked and worked at getting the wallpaper off the walls.  Thankfully it was a pretty easy removal job as they go.  We have had much worse experiences in our many years of home rehabs!  Now to choose the paint color and get that project all finished up.  I love this cute little apartment.  What a sweet nest for them to begin together in just a few months.

Today I will take my friend to work and then head over to co-op to teach my choirs their new music. It seems that they are going to do great.  Last year I didn't have an accompanist until the very end and so spent countless frustrated moments trying to work with background tracks while teaching.  This year I can look at dear Johanna and say, "Would you be able to transpose that?" and she sweetly says "Let me try" and then makes it look easy.  Ahhhhh, I am one blessed choir teacher!!  I could do this forever.  One class has 24 students and the other 26.   They are very nice group sizes.  Usually the older class is a bit larger.  But, I'm telling you that each group sounds very nice.  Sweet, sweet voices.  It was also fun to have a voice student here this week who is making beautiful progress.  We did a "before" videotape of one of her favorite songs and I cannot wait to see the after when she adds her personality to the song.  She is full of personality and drama and this is going to be good!

Yesterday I headed back to the candle workshop to get some orders underway and room sprays mixed up for the shops.  Fresh Vintage by Amy is almost sold out of the French Lavender spray and there was a request at The Painted Chair for Lilac room spray.  Both are made and I look forward to getting them delivered this week.  Hopefully I'll make it to the Painted Chair this morning before heading out to take Mindy to work.

I also must get back to the candle workshop to make multiple orders and some special requests from Back Home Again in Lititz.  We'll be making a Boutique line there.  Also at Fresh Vintage by Amy we are working on a special project that will be fun to reveal.

So you can see that there just isn't time to be dizzy.  I'm so thankful for doctors and the tools they have to help us heal.  I think I want to look up Luke when I get to Heaven and see what medical knowledge he utilized back in the days when Jesus walked this earth.   Well, probably not because there will be no sickness in Heaven.  But, still, it would be cool just to chat.  And since we will have forever it might happen.  :-)

Heaven is greatly on my mind since I lost a friend two weeks ago under very sad circumstances.  Her pastor relayed a vision shared by her sister that was just beautiful.  One in which my friend crossed over and all of her pains, worries, anxieties and griefs were removed from her and she entered her new home singing praises.  Don't you love how God meets those who grieve?  He is so good!

Well, I've been quite chatty today.  Hope you are doing well.  It it time to get myself off this couch and on with this very full day.  Hoping your day is full of those things that make your heart sing.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Lovin' Life, Feelin' Dizzy and Limpin' Hubby

We are in such a special time of our lives.  Getting ready for the marriage of our baby girl and having resounding success of my little candle business.  Warren is in the thick of the transition from one hit show to another at Sight and Sound.  I mean, I can't imagine Samson not being a hit.  It is going to be the most interactive and stunning show yet.

We are beyond blessed.

Chelsea and Chadd signed the lease on an apartment yesterday.  He will move in soon.  Chelsea got permission to do a little cosmetic work in the bathroom of their first place.  The landlady said she wouldn't let "just anyone" do it.  :-)  I love that they have found favor with the landlords already.  It became evident pretty quickly when Chelsea was asked if she required a new stove to move in and she said no.  Chelsea said it would be very nice but it wasn't a deal breaker.   Well, there is a new stove!  We are so thrilled that they will be in a very nice apartment with sweet landlords and I know they will make us so proud in how they interact with those they come in contact with there.

The feelin' dizzy part?  It's literal.  Every morning I wake up between 4 and 5 am with a balance issue.  I'm thinking it is likely the result of inner ear congestion left over from the horrific cold I had recently.  I hope that's all it is....because it will likely resolve itself if that is it.  I'm pretty tired of it, though.  If you have any suggestions that don't involve netti pots I'm interested.  I can't bring myself to pour water up my nasal passages.  I've tried.  Really, I have.

We got good news on Warren's painful leg yesterday.  The poor guy has been limping around like crazy.  The other night his leg was all swollen up and I had to play nurse and get him settled into the recliner with an ice pack. According to the doctor it seems most likely he is just having an arthritis attack with the aggravation of a sprain.  It is on the mend and hopefully with the brace he is now sporting he will be good as new very soon.  Whew!  I had him all in surgery and with a new knee.  It's all good!

I'm hoping he is all better soon because the "honey do" list is getting longer.  Haha!  Poor guy.  There is no rest for the weary around here.  But seriously, we are about to get back to work on the basement which flooded just a little less than a year ago now.  It is so hard to work around Jonathan's sleeping schedule and Warren's work schedule.  Sound weird?  Well, it isn't that strange.  Jonathan works overnights Thursday - Sunday, which means we have a quiet house Friday - Monday.  Guess when Warren is around to work on home projects.  Yep!  Tricky, tricky.  But we are going to find a way.  And it will work for everyone.

So, that's the scoop on what's going on around here.  We may not be rich, influential, shaking up the world, or making the news (thank God!!) but we are blessed, happy and totally in love with each other and our family.  It's a great life!  I'm just putting my own "spin" on it.  Pun intended.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

There Wasn't Going to Be a Flower Girl

For real.  Chelsea and Chadd didn't want a flower girl.  I have no idea why, except that perhaps they just envisioned it differently.  But then.....Chelsea started babysitting J.  And Chelsea fell head over heels in love with this child.  They are so compatible.  Both appreciate quiet.  Both seem to enjoy baking together.  They are both petite. And both love all things girly.

So, the other day when Chelsea and I were at a local Bridal boutique to look for my dress we saw a flower girl dress and I brought up that it wasn't too late if Chelsea wanted to have a flower girl.  She jumped on the idea if J would be allowed to be the one.

The parents were consulted.  They agreed.  And now we have ourselves an adorable little flower girl.
You will just have to imagine how cute she is in the dress we found the other day.  We are keeping that dress a secret.  But I will show you the runner up.

This one was adorable, precious and not a thing wrong with it.
The chosen one is just better 
for the wedding theme
and location.
It is also better on J.
We were all smitten.
Little J was spinning in front of a full length mirror in "the" dress while still 
wearing her snow boots and jeans underneath. 
There was no dressing room so we had to do a quick change behind clothing
racks with the store employees permission.

Chelsea and J. were in agreement.
They loved the dress.
And so, for just $33, on sale, we found a flower girl's dress.
Just like that.
Our first trip out.

She's obviously easier to fit than I.
But then, how boring would it be if I found the perfect
dress right away?


And since the Mother of the Bride position isn't optional
in this case I'll keep on searching.
I'm pretty sure Chelsea and Chadd won't decide they just
don't need one of those.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Invisible Chelsea

As I've said before, Chelsea is on a break from her theater job while they build
the new show, Samson,
She will go back to work there in March.

But in the meanwhile there is no sitting still for this one.
She is doing some part time babysitting for the youngest daughter of 
some long time friends.

They are having so much fun together.
They have baked.

They have colored, watched movies, exercised, played Legos,
and more.

Most recently we all went out to do errands.  
I needed to visit the chiropractor as my neck and back were screaming at me.
Beware of new pillows.
Sometimes they are not "all that".  
Anyway, we were about to leave the Chiropractor's office when 
in walked Beverly!
She is the lady with whom I started Good Neighbors Candle.
Beverly has known Chelsea for oh, so many years.
But she never "saw" her.
Because Chelsea had a little girl with her and so was not on Bev's radar.
She and I talked for about five minutes with Chelsea and J just to our right
and Bev never made the connection.
We got such a giggle out of that.

We went on to Starbucks.
Of course.
Where Chelsea and J got treats.
They make the cutest children's hot chocolate cups.
Who knew?
Anyway, since J and I stayed in the car everyone 
who already knows Chelsea there saw her and it was all normal.

Next up, Target.
We did our shopping and were waiting to check out when I saw a friend
from the ladies Bible Study I spoke about yesterday.
Chelsea has watched her children at the Bible Study for many years.
She would recognize her in a heartbeat...
but we are convinced that she never looked at her because she had 
a child with her.
Spoke to me for more than a minute.
Never saw Chelsea.
Oh my goodness it was funny.

Now we know what Chelsea has to do if she ever wants to be invisible.
Borrow a child.
Others may notice them.... but not people who know her.
She just becomes "a mom of a toddler" 
and thus, not Chelsea.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

The Belt of Truth

Ahhhh....such good times.

Not easy.
Priscilla doesn't give you all of the answers.
She asks a lot of questions.
Questions that make you think all day long.

This week's lesson begins by talking about putting on 
the Belt of Truth.

Big deal.
I've heard it all my life.
Rolled like water off a duck's back.
Until I read the questions in my lesson.

That, and the other way of putting this ...
"girding your loins".
Also a term I've heard all my life.
Tried not to think on this one too much.
It sounds icky, right??

Well, Priscilla asks why we are instructed to start with this item
for the waist.  She points out that our waist area is our core area.
Without strong muscles and protection at our core the rest of us
is meaningless.  Good point!  I've been working on my core muscles
due to some post op complications that require my attention.
It is amazing how much difference the strengthening of those muscles
makes in my daily life.

Now, to put on a belt of truth, or to gird my loins with truth has new meaning.
Truth has to come first. 
How else would we know what our battle is for?
Weapons mean nothing without a proper purpose.
How would we recognize the enemy?

Oh goodness.
I confess that when I first read the questions in our lessons I left
a bunch of stuff blank.
I needed to think on it for a while.
And I'm glad I did.

This may seem simple and not profound to you....
if you don't ponder it, it will.
But over time this worms its way in deep to your thoughts
and makes wonderful sense.

Now I hate to move forward because I just want to keep 
digging deeper into this wonderful truth about truth.

Gird your loins, people!
Our world needs more warrior princesses 
who are starting from 
the right place!!