If I say nothing at all

Letters become words

My little grand-daughter is in the “walk and talk” stage. I know, I told myself when I had children there would never be stages. No particular thing that I was hoping to get through quickly or without some mishap. Yet because my vantage point is more in weekly coffee break doses,the changes that she has are more in stages and more hops, and skips and noticeable. The new words that she learns, the mobility that she gains is different when I am not the mommy in the trenches.

The new words are fun: Swing, Nite nite, Josh, Yes, Mom, Huh?, and Dad are all part of her vocabulary tools. The sign language she knows helps immensely on communication. Things like more, food, wash, all done, oh no, too loud, and peek-a-boo make being around baby enjoyable. But when she learns to stand up from sit and won’t stay down for a nap, that’s on her momma. So to me she is still the cutest thing ever.

The last few years being unable to “drive” away from my isolated country life has been so hard for me. There are days when the empty black pit seems to come along and swallow me whole. Few people know what I mean when I mention that “black hole.” I am not talking about some space odyssey either. Not long ago, I had a series of books on my talking book library that put into action what “Stomping Out the Darkness” was trying to teach me years ago.

Spiritual warfare, mental battles, mind over matter is never a subject others prefer. Most people just want to avoid matters of the mind. Spiritual health and well-being are considered topics best dealt with on a clinical level. So while this lovely little one year old is learning the power of words, and language, dealing with my own mental battle with the strong words and weak thought-life… here we go.

When I was a young girl things happened within our family that would best be forgotten. Words that cut through marrow were flung and spewed from the figure in my family that should have been loaded with coaching encouragement. Dealing with verbal abuse for so many years left a mark upon our family. I am not playing the shame and blame game. This is just how it was. Being a girl as the offspring of the “incapable” should have been an obvious mirrored image to the tongue that spat, but those feelings were never-the-less planted.

So today when I deal with the spiritual topic of ask and receive, my mind does a complete 360 while I consider all the possibilities. It makes me dizzy to think of the people who have come and gone in my life. As a child we learn to say please and may I and thankyou. As an adult we learn that asking others often leads to be “shushed, ” “turned off,” “told no,” or simply considered a burden and ignored. Several times in my journey towards lost eyesight, people have asked if they could pray for healing for me. Then within a short period of time told me they could not give me rides places. As if praying for my healing gets them off the hook for not helping. This kind of response led me to quit asking. So perhaps I am much too human, but this turning away has taught me that perhaps God the Father says “No” more that He says “yes.” Mentally I tell myself that God is more loving than people. Yet, it’s hard to ask and be rejected so many times.

Words are creative. Or destructive. And yes, sometimes words are like creeping bindweed. Like the boa constrictor of weeds, it wraps around the soul, the mind, the will-power, the heart and these words and feelings are difficult to root out. And like russian thistles, their barbed thorns take flesh and soul with them as we try to deal with the ugly past. Right when the field is all cleared out, some nasty ragweed finds it’s way back into our daily existence.

Because of my library of book reading, I spent years training my brain how to do battle with these nasty weeds. Knowing that the power of scripture to overcome these old thought patterns is key, I have an MP3 Bible that I plug into at night. The words of the Father Creator are far stronger than any insult, or abuse ever endured. This keeps me going on the path to uprooting the dark matter.

I also know that giving the demons voice is the worst thing that I can do. So silence often invades my life. I say nothing at all. Trying to speak good and light in the face of evil dark thoughts is the hardest thing ever. Most times all I can manage to mouth is “Jesus, help me.”

By nature, I am a creative person. I like to see crochet art take shape. I like to watch the yearn take cloth. I like to hear music fill the space. Being creative has always been part of who I am. As a child I made cards, and wrote poems. I was always singing and soon began to play the piano with passion and possibility. When I wa not turning letters into words, I made music.

That girl that I once was, letting my voice ring in noisy play, or pounding away at the keyboard seems lost to me. Often I wonder if she is still under all this skin. The tent that covers me, is it really still me? Remembering how I once sucked nervously on a strand of hair, makes me wonder what anxiety do I let rule me now? Taking another step today sends me farther away from who I once was in that little girl.

So I cherish watching our little one learn how to blow kisses goodbye. The teacher in me rejoices when she discovers imaginative play and puts “Scout” in the box that she was just in, doing for the stuffed puppy what we had been doing with her. I treasure her little fingers learning how to put the lid on the cookie tin. I want to memorize how she plods back and forth figuring out the tupperware basket for her little three inch ball. I am amazed at her ability to put sounds into words. Yeah, the cycle of life tells me this is all repetitive. But to her- Everything Is New.

If I say nothing at all, that does not always mean that there is nothing good to say. Sometimes letters become words. But just like my little one year old specialty, letters can sometimes just be magnets that stick to the front panel of the dishwasher. Sometimes words just get all jumbled up and things come out wrong, like calling the giraffe stuffy a “zebra.” Sometimes there is not even any music that comes to mind when my fingers rest on the ebony and ivory. Sometimes I just watch other people, hoping I don’t forget what they look like. Sometimes it’s easier to just copy an old crochet pattern than to learn a new one. Sometimes… I say nothing at all.

If I say nothing at all…

Will you still pick me up when I fall?

will you still carry me?

Will we still walk hand in hand?

If I say nothing at all…

Will you still sit with me?

Will you feed me?

Will you still care?

If I say nothing at all…

Will you still take me to the zoo?

Will you still show me the ocean blue?

Will you sing to me “You Are So Beautiful?”

If I say nothing at all…

Will you still tell me about your day?

Will you still say you love me?

Will we still be best friends?

If I say nothing at all…

If I can no longer call…

If I cannot help when you fall…

Will you

Still

Love

Me?

-written by Yovnne Annette

Resolve

In a minor key

Today I chose to resolve the minor key concerto. The instruments in their conservative style will play the piece in it’s minor chord progressions until at last after nearly an hour of development the key will resolve into it’s major key counterpart. The undertone of sad repose will finally resolve into a final note that no longer holds the grief and mourning that accompanies a downcast spirit. The sun is finally shining.

This lovely little doily measures only eleven inches in diameter. Thank goodness that making it with no. 10 thread is the smallest that I have done. The pattern is made with washcloth cotton and measure about 19 inches.

Perhaps a dozen of these doilies have made their way into wedding gifts. I never kept track of how many I made. And did not take pictures of each either. This one marks that Saturday is our 28th Anniversary.

And so many years ago, it was on a Saturday that we married in the era of church weddings and basement receptions. The day holds no regrets. Happy memories and the feeling of stiff cheeks from smiling all day. We were young, and in love, and with no thought for the morrow whether it be difficult or well traveled.

Today’s prayer requests: those saying goodbye to mothers, young mothers with difficult pregnancies, those saying goodbye to cousins, those fighting for the life of a spouse, and those cleaning up from flood waters-again. This day the continued need for prayer warriors greeted me with brotherly kindness. Having someone call me just for an immediate prayer need was special. Gratefulness to those who understand my hearts need to minister overwhelmed me.

This anniversary marks a new moment in our lives. Both of our children are married and both of them happen to be off the mainland USA at the same time. While an anniversary is not necessarily a day one thinks automatically of the children that came from such union, having both girls so far away at the same time, draws us back to the togetherness that we have both before them, and with them, and after them. Grateful that our children had the advantage of parents who stayed together, I hope we will continue to be an example for them throughout the years.

I John 4:7, “Beloved let us love one another, for love is of God, and everone wholoves is bornof God and knows God.”

I am eternally grateful for a husband who continues to teach me what God’s love is like. Throughout the years getting to know my beloved has helped me get to know God and His unconditional love to me. When the music of life rings true and the melody resolves itself into a major key, I am reminded that though life strikes chords of loneliness or mourning, having someone to play the tune with means that in the end the song resolves itself into a major key of happiness and joy. Though there might be seasons of sadness or discord, keep playing the piece. The instrument that marriage teaches us to play is the heart of love.

No, neither of us play the beautiful music that we had the joy of listening to all those years with our girls. But somehow, the duets that they played together were an echo to the love that their father and mother were sharing every day. I am grateful for our two daughters and the lives of those they now share with another family through marriage. May the love that we all show teach others about God’s love. Through this love may they know eternal love that is reborn every time it touches another heart.

From 114 to 112

But don’t ask my age

If you have ever watered a tree that does not grow or a flower that will not bloom, then this one is for you.

The geraniums barely weathered the winter. First they were in the greenhouse and almost to full bloom, and then the winter freeze arrived. We moved them to the garage to maintain through darkness and frigid timeps outside. Only to have them put on full bloom a few more times. Back to the greenhouse they went. Finally. But with the continuing wintery bluster, they nearly collapsed into nothingness and frozen tundra. i lost three of the eleven. Oh, well.

When the cold snap took the tulips back into dormancy, I decided to crochet this tulips in a row afghan garden. Of course, it is the first pattern study and I am using some old used up yarn. So the colors are a bit like the memory of our drab winter.

And now for the numbers. Winter in it’s harshness did not exist at my table. We have always had more than enough. Just giving away pounds though is not easy. And so for the first time in about half of my life ago, my weight soared up to an unacceptable high for me. They say it is just “the change.” Well, change doesn’t have much to do with it other than the fact that taking walks with winds at more than 12 mph is really quite uncomfortable, in fact it usually hurts my ears, or my eyes, or my face in some fashion. So my common from of keeping myself fit wind wherever the wind listeth! I am on my way down. I hope.

The shadow of things to come often means that I am about to collide with a tree, fencepost, or sidewalk sign. Using the walking mobility cane (my “moses”) crosses my mind some of the times. But around the place, having a dog by my side is better. I am usually carrying something and she does fine with a slip leash.

Some people say that crossing the half century line is difficult. I wonder how much of it really is psychological. This grand- parent thing came at a real good time, I tell you. She is quite the distraction.

My birthday came and went with not much pomp. Circumstance ruled the day as I nursed my hubby back to health. And washed dishes, laundry, floors, bedding, et cetera. Perhaps, I thought, if I did all the cleaning on my birthday, then I would not have to do any the rest of the year. Ha. Fat chance I told myself. Then I looked in the mirror and cried at my reflection. This poor old house is settling into the foundation something awful.

Spending time with our little Isabelle is the highlight of each week. We have watched her grow up into a little toddler and soon her little legs will carry her running to another room. This past week whe learned the actions for “So Big!” It is such a joy to watch her learn and discover. Now if only getting up so early to ride with my husband up to the big city where she lives would not throw my heart palpitations into such a tizzy. Coffee has been on the back burner for some time now. I don’t like the dull taste of caffeine free. Nor do I enjoy the fact that my little frame has gotten “so big!” Good for the little ones, not good for this old one.

The gardens are calling my name. The yarn projects are whispering to me. The food in the fridge- not so much. I’d still rather have a piece of cake. We will see if the new probiatic helps any of my ailments. While a friend of mine just recently got a pacemaker to help her aging heart, they felt mine did not need such an update last year. So a trudge on. More than likely I will just have to help myself. More water, more walks!

In service day 5

Weather or not

Whether or not she wants to work has been the challenge all week. There is always the tug of the frisbee play that seems to call her heart away from focus. But even that word has taken on direct meaning for the flighty little girl that seems to have nothing but noodles in her body.

Day five of Honey in service: slip on my helper collar only took two teasing nods, the walk to feed cats only distracted by dad getting something out of car, quick response for return to duty at the greenhouse, and found dad at garage in one sniff. She returned me to the house where I slipped off the service collar and away she ran. I would say this is success!

Whether or not she really has to go out, this silly “pickle” always wants to go out to play frisbee. The rain or shine of the weather means nothing to her until she is wet to the bone. She hates wet, except when it means chasing frisbee. Even in the 30 mph driving snow, Honey will still focus on the frisbee to catch it ten feet in the breeze. Harnessing that energy to have her help me get around the acreage seems almost hopeless.

But we send away for a service harness and got busy on the training this week inspite of the weather. Day one was a trick to even get the harness on. She doesn’t like sticking her head into anything that might mean trapped. Learning that the harness comes off in just a short while is the key to quick buckle ups.

Day two and three went by swiftly with only two or three attempts at use. Morning chores mostly since hubby was not here. Day four also was a good service step practice day. She seemed to pick a up on the garbage duty, the chore duty, and the mail route quickly. These things she has observed for two years and not helped me at all. Her choice to prance around in circles with a frisbee has been very distracting to my straight line walking.

So today was day five. Weather or not, she was going to help with chores whether she wanted to or not. I expected the slip collar teasing. She jumps backwards two or three times telling me she does not prefer confinement. “Be Still!” Is more to calm my tongue than to calm her nerves.

I also expected distraction to give her the giggles. And right on cue to the car door opening, she began to jump around. The “focus” command did not work this time. So I repeated the task, “feed cats.” The journey to the greenhouse did require the word “focus” as she wanted to watch what dad was doing behind us.

The nice surprise was how attentive she was after my greenhouse check. With the sun shining and the warmer weather, the heaters all needed shut off for the day. Watering has finally produced some results and there are quite a few seedlings up. When I stepped out the door and considered calling her name, Surprise! Honey was right at my side when the door clicked shut. I praised her much.

Her quick leaning has been a nice touch to the struggles of the week as my mood crashes have been miserable. These is a head ache right under the volcano’s surface today. She returned me to the house without any confusion and I released her to go play with dad.

Yay, Honey! You aren’t such a silly pickle after all!

Silence is golden

Can you hear me now?

“If silence was golden, then I would be rich!” For I would spin all my quiet hours into the most priceless treasures.

Indeed, for me those silent, golden treasures are the house spent in prayer. while my heart does not treasure the quiet, silence, there is something to be said about placing one’s heart where the treasure lies. So rather than focus on the deafening hum of the refrigerator, I choose to focus on the prayer list.

Santa Claus might have a list a mile long, but mine seems to grow forever in leaps of marathons. Every hour it seems I lay my burdens down, only to pick them right back up again. No thoughts of who is naughty or nice, just simply sending heavenward the supplications for God’s storehouse to open up.

But what happens when it seems that God does not answer? Or rather when it seems as if the answer is a slap in the face? Hugging a porcupine really does not work. And there seems to ve a viper in every stitch of those whom I have spent my hours in labor for?

Should I quit?

Should I write off the needs of those who chose to stab me in the back? How do I translate my hours of prayer into care for others when it is not accepted.

I feel like the commercial-

“Can You Hear Me Now?”

Sometimes silence is golden.

I haven’t arrived into a silence that feels very rich yet. It seems empty.

This is Autumn

The magic car pet…

This is …Autumn

This is the silly kitten that took a ride in the Edge’s engine after a Fall Festival at church. This is the kitten that does not belong. This is the kitten that stole my heart. Not really sure how she found a place to ride in the car 17 miles and hung on for dear life. Well, now that she finished her Magic Carpet ride to a new life her on our acreage, a new adventure begins.

It was no fantasy here though. The first day she had to fight all of the other cats just to get a bite to eat. By the following day she has found that even the dog is not her friend. Honey is much to big and much to rambunctious for a kitten. Maybe the house is her friend.

My apologies to all the dog lovers in the family. Honey is much to muddy to invite back into the house. In just two days of evening dew and harvest dust, she is much dirtier than I imagined. Perhaps the cat will be less bother than the dog… Sorry.

This is autumn…

The time of year when vehicles move from farm to town to fields to elevators and to another one yet. Cats and kittens get cold and find the warm engines great places to cuddle up for a nap. Then suddenly, their world has changed and they are somewhere new. Sometimes it seems like magic, and other times just incidental. Poor little kitten.

This is autumn…

The time of year when vehicles and animals are all on the move. The traffic is pretty confusing if you are a little kitten. But we aren’t taking her back to town any time soon. She’ll probably steer clear of four wheels from now on. But if you know me… I’m all game to tame the little thing and teach her that our big scary dog is just in it for the chase.

The past week went by with many a car ride for me. While driving is not my option, it is for my family. The whole juggling act of vehicles and their keys has been very confusing this past week. Add to it the fact that we only had two sets of house keys. My set is not on a car set, the other is. But someone does not always drive that car. And our daughter, who lives at home right now, did not have a set and the juggling of cars and keys, made finding a house set kind of like a disappearing act. The answer to the problem was an extra set of keys. Rubbing the globe and a genie for the right set would not have worked.

My little grandaughter has been having quite the time trying to adjust to her mommy’s new lesson teaching schedule. Watching her during that hour, includes a part-time magic carpet ride. The first few times on the play-matte was easy for her, but now she tends to fight the nap time enforced by someone other than mommy. Typical kid if I do say so myself.

The first time I remember a “magic carpet” type expericence for me was in grade school, when we were allowed to go read a book in the carpeted tent while the others finished their lessons. I loved the chance to get done early and go to a different land in my reading. Reading for escape of reality has been an “issue” for me ever since.

One time in high school, rather than do my mother’s bidding, the book called my name louder. So when the time came to really do what she asked, well, I flew up the stairs and back down again. Only… my feet slipped on the carpeted landing and my hand went right through the window as I tried to steady my turn. No magic carpet or fantasy landing there. The window had to be paid for with my newspaper route money. Oops!

While I can’t really have a car-pet, the story of this little kittens ride and adventures are just beginning.

This is autumn…

Here’s the behind the story aspect…

This past spring I had a little kitten Suga that I had to give away because we can’t have a house cat. My giving pets away has been such a heart ache for my constant at home times that another soon took her place. Molasses came and went, taking nearly 300 dollars with hime as he only lived five months as a “fixed” and well “vetted” cat. So much for spedning money on a cat in the country. The others picked on him until he lost his life on the roadway. End of the want list… No not really.

One night this summer we took a motorcycle ride and discovered while visiting a neighbor seven miles away had an abundance of calico cats. Someone tells me that calico’s are always female which I’m not sure I believe. Because “black” genes always win and thus there would never be any calico cats left, right? Yeah what ever… I thought they were so cute, but they were not ready to leave their mother.

Then my babysitting days came and the cats were forgotten. Move on into fall. The days have been busy with other duties and while every one else is busy, I still often sit with not much to do but crochet. It would be so nice to bring a little fur ball in to pur on my lap. I still miss Suga.

The fall festival at church the other night was our missions offering night. While I do not believe that we magically recieve something if we give something… I do believe that God will reward our giving spirit. Maybe not now, or on earth but He does reward those who give with a “Cheerful Heart.” There’s a passage in Corinthians in which Paul writes about the spiritual law of sowing and reaping. Here is just a portion of it.

“For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.”

‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭9:10‬ ‭NLT‬‬

http://bible.com/116/2co.9.10.nlt

Enter the evening’s end:

as we sit in the car a few minutes and then get out to go into the house. As I step around the car, there sits this soft, tiny little fur ball. A reward for giving? Maybe not, but the Lord knows my lonely heart. The days can pass with such emptiness for me when I am home alone. Maybe just maybe I could tame this little thing and have a purring motor on my lap.

They say a kitten reduces stress, and that cat’s can be good therapy for the lonely heart. Has God answered my prayer? Time will only tell.

Perhaps my spirit is a bit rebellious. The above prayer shawl done in a lemony yellow simply states that “I was a spring baby and I do not really like fall colors, so in defiance of fall my prayer shawl will be in spring colors!” And the little fur ball settled in on the previous prayer shawl that does not have a home yet, is my rebellious way of saying:

This is Autumn.

Day one again!

A diet does not get old if we start all over again everyday…

Sort of a product review… “Keto with Kelly” a diet plan that is specialized by the indidivual for the individual.

Ketosis is not to be confused with kito-acidosis! The acid one is bad. It is the life threatening one; so if you are into looking things up, well, just go for it. It has a long explanation.

Ketosis is the metabolic state that tells the body to start using up fat stores. Not necessarily a starvation diet, it is more about good eating to tell the body to quit storing up fat for future need. Many keto diets actually have more fat in the meal plan than what most people are used to eating. “Keto with Kelly” focuses on low carbohydrates, good fats, and something green daily. Most people think that diets are full of foods that taste bad. Kelly’s goal is to give you foods that taste great based on the foods you typically eat. Just get rid of the bad carbs, and reduce the sugars until you eat efficiently. Sufficient, efficient meals are also four or five “snacks” rather than the more commonly prepared three.

So Day One was supposed to be the other day when my dear husband printed all 68 pages of his booklet. We have failed and we have succeeded. Today was Day One of success for him. From breakfast all the way through supper, he was successful at sticking to the plan. The only meal he missed was his mid-morning lunch. He actually was supposed to have more protein again and missed it, because he was picking scales off my fig tree in the greenhouse.

Tonight, he fixed our shared meal from the plan found on the recipes. It was “Fajita Chicken,” All the spices could have been from our greenhouse,–maybe next time. We both really liked the extra spicy chicken and that’s when I decided to do my product review.

http://ketowithkelly.com

(Be aware that there is no particular website home page set up, this was found through a life cycle search for low carb diets. Gavin filled out the survey and then was sent to her purchasing site that told the specifics of the diet plan and what the purchase would give us. We used “keto with Kelly” to jumpstart our low carb lifestyle to aid in lowering cholesterol and blood sugars. This is often an adult onset diabetes meal plan.

We did pay for the meal plan after all, and there is more to do. We have not even gone grocery shopping yet! The cheese that we should have had on the chicken was gouda, but our trip to the store has not happened yet. That discussion is what led us to talking about Day One!

When is day one of a diet or live-it plan? Is it the day you decide to spend money on a meal plan and grocery list? Is it the first day you try to follow the meal plan? Is it the first day you use a recipe from the booklet? Is it the first day you buy the grocery list that someone else wrote for you? Is it the first day without a slice of bread? Is it the first day of the next day of the rest of your life?

— If we start over every single day, because we failed the day before somehow, then every day is Day One!

So that’s what we are doing. Mind you I will probably still eat my carbohydrates for breakfast. I do not eat eggs. Mind you that he is at work and may need to eat a different lunch than I do because we are not together. Mind you that there is a bushel of pears to eat from our tree south of the place, so someone has to eat them. Mind you that I will probably fail at this meal plan more than he will.

I am so proud of my dear. He is nearly down to our wedding day weight and I am now the one who is overweight for my height. That’s kind of why I fractured my toe. I am far too physically fit for my eyesight and my age and my weight. That little bone in the joint of the second toe on my left foot apparently can’t handle all 109 pounds of me. I think my dear will have to get his suit taken in for our daughter’s wedding. Yay for him!

So, thanks Kelly for the meal plan and the live-it!

Now, do we get a double recliner/loveseat for cuddling and watching moves, or a treadmill to walk/run on in the bad weather days soon to come.?

Gentle on the ginger, dear

Smoothies, celery, and other confessions

Gentle on the ginger, dear!”

This past weekend was a full one. It began with a nice out to eat experience. One that we had not done in a long time. Just us. Then we had a visit to an “old” friend, don’t mind my calling her old. She’s well aware. The following morning however, my dear husband offered to make me a smoothie. It was all fine until the ginger. Then we spent the day at an art fair. The week since seems like a blur.

About that smoothie… A shake or two of ginger in the smoothie is great to jump start the digestive system. But when the jolt of flavor reminded me that maybe there was a horse radish instead of a ginger root! – oh, boy! “Gentle on the ginger, dear” became the phrase for the rest of the meals this past week.. Food that has taste is great, but too much spice can give it a bite.

Once upon a headache ago, my massive migraine left me unable to focus on anything in print. So, I relied on my six year old daughter to tell me the recipe for the meatball spices. She however, not familiar with teaspoon or tablespoon markings or for that matter fractions, read the 1/4 teaspoons as one scoop of four tablespoons of PEPPER! We had to eat at the drive-inn that night. The meatballs were not even fit for the dog. What a funny memory.

After the whirlwind…

Our daughter came through at eight in the morning on a Saturday. It felt like a whirlwind hit us. On her way to a wedding, we jumped out of our Saturday lazy-mode to get up and serve her morning rush supplications. The smoothie in the middle of all the giddy-up, made it quite memorable!

There was not dust in my eyes after she left Saturday morning. Sure should have been. Then on Sunday after her talk at church, the wet dew in my eyes. Said moisture would not let me read my music during the service. The whirlwind of emotions that filled my heart took much time to settle down. The feeling that I need something to hang on to while the wind rushes by has occurred to me several times. I had a strong sensation that this “wind” would probably continue for the next two months of preparation for her leaving to missions internship. Praise the Lord that I have Him and that her reason for going is His plan.

Checkout confessions of children

Last Saturday’s plans were made to go visit my niece and nephews to the north. We attempted to speed through the morning chores that had been delayed an hour or so. We all enjoyed our time at the art fair as much as could be expected with the heat. The three little kids did great in spite of the frequent disappointments to not buy stuff. Later in the day, we enjoyed a child’s “checkout confession” to the cashier at Wally-world. On the belt were a variety of candies, items for a meal and some napkins. The little girl begins to tell the cashier that the candy is for her daddy. “He eats a lot of candy!” She announces for the the surrounding audience. Who really cares if the candy is for them or for someone else. It was obvious that the child had learned the shame and blame game quite well. We could barely stifle our snickers!

Rewind the clock…

Visiting with our neighbor to the south led me to thinking about her picture window. To begin with shortly after her husband passed, the hail came through and took care of her roof and her large picture window. It took quite a time to get the replacement in, ordering it, getting the lumber company and the insurance company to agree. There were affidavits of “truth” and proof of hail damage to apply for proper placement. It was a rig-a-more-al that left her wondering what in the world she was doing living in such a large house.

It is not the actual window that I thought of after our visit, but the window to her world. Rewinding the clock is something that happens quite frequently when we are together. The time just flies so fast when she tells her stories of their early life. The past, present and future that keeps her going day after day. She looked incredibly weak and frail after her loss. But now nearly two years later, she looks strong and amazing.

The Widow’s Window

A look at the present

A view to the past

A glimpse at the future

Of a hope that will last

The widow’s window

Is a world gone too fast.

-written July 13, 2018 by Yvonne Annette Clark (myself)

Old sayings and old people are some of my favorite things. One of my favorites from childhood was this silence breaker…

A penny for your thoughts…

I never really knew where it came from. And I never seemed to have a penny when the silence stretched on so long. Being around my daughter and her husband more recently brought this old gem of a saying to mind. His silence reminds me of the proverbs about the wise holding their tongue. People of much silence, have more wisdom locked up their hearts than the fools that have waggin’ tongues. Perhaps a penny is not enough for my son-in-laws thoughts!

Go FIG-urge

The figs are finally putting on some plumpness. It’s hard to understand the patience factor in a tree that holds onto it’s fruit for so long. Taking up to three months to ripen, the little trees are delicate. But ours is quite do for a trim job. The little one is now taller that the bigger tree. A fall trim job will take care of that. It is trying to escape the dome-home, I think.

Getting ready to get ready- no try options

While the weekend seemed to fly by and there are many little anecdotes that stick in my brain, the idea that one cannot “try” has been the stickiest. We cannot try to visit the widows or the orphans. We cannot try to be anything. We either are or we are not. This consideration came to me, while sharing some figs with my brother’s family. I also brought the fig newton bar cookies to share. Explaining that the kids had to “try” a real fig first was difficult. Finally, I said “taste” the real one and then you can have a cookie. My mother would not even look at the figs. Her example left a “bad taste” on the kids. But after their parents each ate one, then they gave it a go. Go FIG-ure!

Top of the mourning to ya’…

The bottom this celery stalk was cut off nearly two weeks ago. I keep them in a glass right next to the kitchen sink to root out and grow. Being patient is my new theme in gardening. So while I am writing for the roots to sprout before I take this out to the greenhouse, having it next to the sink assures me that I can keep the water at about an inch deep.

So while we were shopping the other day… Mourning the loss of my kitten friend, my husband bought me another turtle for the greenhouse. It’s fake. And no it doesn’t pet well. In fact the fish in the pond can’t be petted either. But perhaps I learned my lesson about getting attached to a cat.

We saw the garden turn into abundance before the crop begins to give. We saw a widow in her world of sorrow giving away her love and stories until we were too tired to stay awake any longer. We saw things at the art festival that seemed like just junk. We saw people enjoying themselves and others. We heard much that could be repeated in laughter and joy. But what I hope is that while our window of the world might be different or similar to others, we are not so stained by our own view that we cannot glimpse the world through someone els’s window.

James 1:27 “Religion that is pure and faultless before our Father God is one that visits widows and orphans in their affliction and keeps oneself unstained from the world.”

As my daughter gets ready to go on to her missions internship this fall, there seems to be a lot of “getting ready to get ready” in our lives. There are so many different ideas of “missions” work out there. While the world sees charity as “giving” of funds, true charity gives of self also. This view, this glimpse, this hope is fare more enduring than the simple things of this world that I live in. Yet it is this world that teaches me each and every day more about my Father God.

When Mother Cannot Sleep At Night

For my daughters from my garden of prayers, here’s a poem from the midnight hours by yours truly -love to all -mom.

When mothers can’t sleep at night

They pray until their hearts are broken

They sow seeds of tears

They write letters to hide away in drawers

When mother cannot sleep at night

She reads her Lord’s words

She whispers her cries for souls

She spreads blankets of love and mercy

She lifts her praise to the Almighty

When mother can’t sleep at night

She swaddles her little babies

She soothes her feverish toddler

She comforts her dreaming daughter

She consoles her fitful son

She sends heavenward prayers of hope

When mother cannot sleep at night

She weeps for dreams now lost

She aches for arms once filled

She writes lists of to-do’s and wish lists and gift lists and plans holiday meals

When mothers can’t sleep at night

They tend prayer gardens

Hold candle light vigils

Read old leather bond Bibles

And they hold fast their faithful watch