Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Double The Fun!

Welcome, the party's just starting!


The streamers, balloons, and dinner tableware all are color coordinated

Take a sneak peek at the TWO cakes, each twin got his favorite.


This was just part of our delicious dinner



Eleven candles on each cake




I warned the boys that any hijinks would be made public on my blog!





Time for gift opening
Welcome! Come along with me to the very special party we went to tonight. Twins Caleb and Connor were born 11 years ago today, and went home from the hospital in outfits we gave them. Ever since then, we have never missed a birthday, and watched them grow into awesome boys who are so smart that they have always been in their school's gifted class. Instead of a big party, tonight was an elegant dinner party just for family, and we were invited. We were honored to be counted among family. This was nicer than a big party because we got to have quality time with them, and a delicious home cooked meal. We also started having bible studies with them this summer, and they have really been delightful. These boys are able to grasp concepts that some adults cannot. I think God likes rejoicing at parties, because he ordered the Israelites to have several feasts a year, and these people knew how to party!! At one feast, they partied for seven days, and God filled them with so much joy that they partied for seven more after that!! Another time, they had 2,000 bulls and 17,000 sheep and goats. Hmmm...lots of good protein, but I would have missed the cake and ice-cream!







Monday, August 30, 2010

Things Aren't Always What They Seem








It has not been a secret on this blog that I am absolutely terrified of spiders. It's called arachnophobia, and I have done several posts about it. So you can only imagine my horror when I woke up one morning, went in the kitchen, and saw this shadow on the wall. YIKES!! I was paralyzed with fear, heart pounding. It looked like the biggest spider I had ever seen in my life, a monster spider of some kind. Here are some of the panicked thoughts that ran through my mind. Where's hubby...must run...find a male neighbor to kill it...call 911!! But when I cast a frantic glance around the room to find it, here is what it turned out to be. It was the shadow of a dragonfly suncatcher I had stuck to the window with a suction cup. I heaved a sigh of relief. Needless to say, I did NOT need any coffee. It's good to remember that lots of things are not what they seem, and that was a very good thing for me on that morning.


"As for those of you who seemed to be important - whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not judge by external appearance..." Galatians 2:6

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Pure Beauty












My very first sight of the Stargazer Lily was just a few weeks ago, and of course I had to show you. I was amazed. It is a newer lily, developed only in the last part of the 20th century. Lilies were around in ancient Greek and Roman civilizations, and then appeared in biblical traditions. This plant is extremly toxic to cats, and can cause death. But strangely, it affects only cats and no other animal. Lilies symbolize purity, and are popular funeral flowers, because of the soul being restored to innocence and purity after death. It's a pure beauty.


"The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Some have wandered away from these and turned to meaningless talk..."
1 timothy 1:5

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Peek-A-Boo








Tonight as the sun was setting, it was playing peek-a-boo between these two tall trees. We thought no one was there except us, but we were wrong. This one lone bird was sitting up on a pole enjoying the sunset as well. He was singing to the setting sun to make himself heard and seen. The last two pictures are Phil with our granddaughter a couple years ago. They were also playing peek-a-boo. She thought that no one could see her if she covered her eyes. But she was seen and found, with delighted squeals ensuing. Rather like our little Anne thinking no one can see her if she closes her eyes, some think that they cannot be seen if no one is there to see them. But they would be wrong. Playing peek-a-boo can be a risky business for grown ups.


"From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind; from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth - he who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do."
Psalm 33:13,15












Friday, August 27, 2010

Lost

The Mennonite owned Cheese Shop


Out in the country

This doesn't look like Day Care, I think we're lost!


Ella wanted to show us how fast she can run in the big Day Care yard



She wants to show you what we passed by!




Two little horse statues pulling a cart





See you later!
Today we needed to pick up Miss Ella from Daycare. We had only been there about twice before, and it is out in the country, in a different city. At this point, I need to use the L word that most men hate their wives to utter. We may have gotten just a bit, er... LOST. The trip started out great, with a stop at the Cheese Shop on the way. They sell fresh eggs from the Amish farm down the road, and we bought several dozen. But then, with eggs safely in hand and back on the road, we somehow seemed to...lose our way. Lots of cornfields and barns, no Daycare. Fortunately it only involved turning around and looking closer at house numbers. Ella was delighted to see us and wanted to show us how fast she could run. And on the way home, we passed this little horse and cart fruit stand. She was so charmed that we just had to stop and let her get out. Why is she not smiling in the last photo? She was unable to pet the horse statues because there were grasshoppers jumping all around them, which she informed me would make a great meal for a praying mantis. So today, being lost wasn't such a bad thing after all. It's so easy to get lost in so many different ways. But when we do, we know there is one who will always come looking for us.
"I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice."
Ezekiel 34:16






Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Fountain Of Life
























This is the new Disney fountain in Anaheim, California. No, I did not go there myself and see it, but I took these pictures from my T.V. screen because they amazed and excited me so much. I had never seen anything like it. It combines water, fountains, and lasers. It has a movie screen made of water, showing 3-D images. How? They take many droplets of water, infuse them into the air, and shoot laser images onto them. So the images you see are actually projected onto the screen of water drops. The screen is 385 feet wide, and capable of producing 100,000 digital images. Twelve hundred programmable fountains can shoot two hundred feet into the air. The grid of fountains is over one acre big. This amazing fountain was five years in the making. It also is controlled by one of the largest computer show systems ever built. The computers control over 18,000 different actions in the show. They have a 25 minute show every night. It's a pretty thing to the eyes, but not as exquisite as the rainbow and sunset that I posted yesterday. For alas, it is only man made, it can never be a fountain of life.


Oh Lord, you preserve both man and beast. How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings...For with you is the fountain of life...







Psalm 36

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Dimming Of The Day


















The soul would have no rainbow if the eye had no tears - American Indian saying


You pull me like the moon pulls on the tide
You know just where I keep my better side
When all my will is gone, you hold me sway
I need you at the dimming of the day

From the song "Dimming Of The Day" by Richard Thompson


We both had a trying day today. At least four appointments, one of which messed up, and a dinner I made that ended up in the trash because of a mistake. It seemed that we just ran and ran, and finally settled on the couch at about 10:00 P.M., almost comatose. I have also been dealing with some other worrisome issues. But here is what God gave me at the dimming of the day. He KNOWS. All these pictures are what I saw this evening, an onslaught of affirmation. I have remarked in my blog before that it continues to amaze me the way God will encourage me at just the right time, and I'm so blessed that one of those times was tonight.


"And God said "This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be a sign of the covenant between me and earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind." Genesis 9

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Willow, Weep For Me









Willow weep for me, willow weep for me,
Bend your branches green along the stream that runs to sea,
Listen to my plea, listen willow, and weep for me.


Weeping willow tree, weep in sympathy,
Bend your branches down along the ground and cover me,
When the shadows fall, bend oh willow
and weep for me.

There is one who wept for us all, and his plea is that we know him and come to him. The willow knows.

"By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion.
Upon the willows in the midst of it we hung our harps." Psalm 137


"Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes."
Rev. 21


Note On "Willow Weep For Me": This song was written by Ann Ronell in 1932. At the time, she was romantically involved with George Gershwin, and speculation has always been that he really wrote this song and gave it to her as a gift. There is no proof, but there are amazing similarities to his writing style. Check it out and decide for yourself by going to YouTube and listening to this controversial and haunting song. There are many versions, I prefer the Chad and Jeremy one, because that is what I listened to growing up.












Monday, August 23, 2010

A Sign Of Hope












Do you know what the first two pictures are showing? They are chestnuts, fallen from a neighborhood tree. They start out in these green prickly pods, then open to reveal the nut. There is one very special chestnut tree in Amsterdam that has been a sign of hope to millions of people worldwide. It is referred to as The Anne Frank Tree. While Anne and the others were hiding, she was never able to go outside, but when she went to the attic and looked up, this was the only bit of nature she saw. Here is just a part of what she wrote about that tree in her diary "From my favorite spot on the floor I look up at the blue sky and the bare chestnut tree...as long as this exists, and I may live to see it, I cannot be unhappy." This tree was her one sign of hope, and today it fell. It had been sick since 1993 and almost half it's wood had rotted. Many legal battles ensued, with people fighting the decision to cut it down. The tree defenders finally won, and a steel support frame was made to keep the tree from falling. But fall it did, today. Even with steel supports. No one knows why, but the weather had been very bad. There is a time for everything, and when God means for our time to go, no efforts of man or steel can stop it. A symbol of hope for many is gone today, but there is a greater hope with us all, one that abides and is stronger than steel.

"We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you." Psalm 33:20,22
Note on the pictures: First two taken by me. Third and fourth from the web. The fourth is looking out from Anne's room at how she saw the tree. Last picture is the fallen tree, picture taken by me from the T.V. news tonight.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Living In The Gutter




We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. - Oscar Wilde


Poor little children! Living in the gutter, forced to beg for alms on the street! Have you anything to spare? A farthing, or even a pence? Perhaps you need a good chimney sweep? I hope they don't have to resort to selling their beloved dog....no, wait, it seems I may have read too much Dickens! Did I fool you, maybe even for a second? Actually, the city was digging up and replacing the gutters in front of these kids houses, and they were having the time of their lives playing in them. They waited for a car to pass by, then would all lay down in the gutter trench! I'm not quite sure if they were playing dead or pretending to nap, since they did have a blanket. When the hapless driver would have a reaction, they would get up and shriek with laughter! We passed by twice and told them to smile pretty, click! It never ceases to amaze me how children can take a bad situation or something ugly, and make it good, make it a game. Somewhere along the way, we lose this ability, but when? I think it fades with the growing responsibility and sorrows of life. It's in Never Never Land with Peter Pan. Today, my wish for all of you is that no matter what your circumstances, you will be able to look up and see the stars.


He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. Psalm 147:4,5