Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

Just stopping by the blog this afternoon with a little update
 in the form of praise and thanksgiving

After my previous two posts, some of you might be wondering if I've flown over the cuckoo's nest or something.  
Well, I haven't. 
Not completely anyway. 


I have been doing a lot of  flying  though. 
Mostly, I've been flying back and forth to one of 
these places. 



That's a hospital, in case you can't tell, and no, I was not the patient. That would be the Duchess, who recently  had what we hope will be her final surgery for a long time.

 Wooo. Hoooo!

In full disclosure, that's not a photo of the hospital where we had our recent adventure. I just added that picture for a little blog bling. In all our coming and going, I never did get around to taking a picture of the place for posterity.

I did, however, whip out the shiny red Kodak just in time to get a pre- surgery portrait.  You know... for posterity. She wasn't all that happy about the photo shoot, but she agreed to smile on one condition:

Deb-rah, she said. 
I had better not see a picture of my face 
wearing a jiffy pop hat
sprawled all over the world wide web. 



Don't worry, Mom....




You won't. 

I'm nothing if not obedient.


And that's all I have time for tonight.  We're all hoping that sooner rather than later, she will be fully recovered and things will finally be back to normal in Mayberry.



*****
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Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Talk Back Tuesday: What Does It Take?

Here's a quickie.

source

I'm determined to jump start these engines of mine for one simple reason:

I like blogging.

I mean I really, really do like it. I like the part where I get to do the talking, but I also like the part where I get to do the listening.  I am edified and encouraged more than you know when I read your words. Simply put, the blog experience has not only made my home prettier, it has made my spirit a little prettier too.

I like to read your blog thoughts. I like to read your comments, too...

So here's the thing:

Sunday, I posted a quote from one of my favorite quote-sters, Jesse Mercer.


And I took the comment function off, just like I always do on Sunday. 


Today is Tuesday, though, so I thought I might do something a little different. I'm handing you the microphone.

In my head, I look just like this guy...

In reality, I'm nothing whatsoever like that guy, but that's irrelevant. 


This morning, Debbie Donahue wants to know:

Is there anything in this world that makes you want to stand up and cry?



Sunday, June 8, 2014

A Sign of the Times


I've yakked before about the circle of quotations at Mercer University by its namesake, Jesse Mercer. Lately, I have been reminded of  this one:



Can anyone relate?

I've been absent for a multitude of reasons and don't exactly know where to begin to catch up.  Most of my reasons are of the physical variety.   I am trying to complete not one but two major projects around here. For whatever reason, I'm just pitiful poor at yakking through a project these days. I'm blaming the hormones. I always blame the hormones.

When that fails, I blame the family.  I happened to have both of my daughters this past week.

Woo.
Hoo.

Wouldn't you think I would be giddy beyond reason? I mean, really... Two big projects in House Land and two full beds in Mom Land. It doesn't get much better than that.

I am giddy.   

And yet...

Even while I'm enjoying the good stuff, my mind keeps dragging me back to the bad stuff.  I'm not talking about stuff going on around here.  I'm talking about the stuff going on out there.  I'm talking about the stuff going on in this fallen world that breaks my heart and steals my words.

I'm sure you can imagine how much I hate for anything to steal my words. 

To be honest,  I almost wish I just didn't know stuff.  I almost wish that I could be one of those ostrich people who stick their heads in the sand and give a full feathered moon to the rest of the world.   After all, ignorance is bliss, right?

How's that bliss working out for us?

No matter how blissfully ignorant we choose to be, human beings are still being trafficked.
Children are still being abused.
Families are still starving.
People are still dying without Jesus.

Our lack of interest doesn't change their reality.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the planet... 

Professed Christians will whip out the checkbook  this morning to advance the Kingdom of God.

With important expenditures like this. 


'Cause nothing advances the Kingdom of God like a tripped-out electric sign belching Bible verses out of context.    

Folks, I want to say more here. I really and truly have tried to say more here. I guess I'm having my own Jesse Mercer moment, though, because after days of sitting by my keyboard trying to put my thoughts together, I find that I still just don't have the words.

So this morning, I'm just going to stand up and cry. 

I'm crying for the world. 
And I'm crying for the nation. 
But more than anything, 
I'm crying for the First United Ostrich Church.

*****
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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Uh Oh... Guess What Day It Is?



It might be Hump Day in every other corner of the world, but in my world it's something even better. It's Over The Hump Day!

 Yessiree, I'm finally here  to announce that I'm 
over the hump.  

Actually, it's even better than that. I'm over two humps.  I'll talk about the bigger one in a day or two. Today, I'm just stopping in to yak about the first hump, the big old camel that has been camping out in my living room for over two decades.  


Meet Cindy the camel back. 



Don't judge me...

Back in the day, she was downright stylish. Anybody out there remember? Back when we had big patterns to go with our big hair... 

Waverly wannabe florals...


In jewel tones, no less. 


No, young Cindy wasn't  unattractive. (Trust me, youngsters. You can check it out in your historical design books from the last century.)  It's just that  young Cindy was impractical and trendy.  Cindy the Sofa stayed in style for about 7.2 seconds before the jewel tones gave way to Tuscan orange and large florals became geometrics or some such thing. I don't remember what it was. I missed it completely. 

Now, that might have been OK
 if I had actually loved Cindy to begin with. 
 I didn't. 



The jewel toned big hair florals might have been the rage, but they were never, ever,  Debbie. They were... Cindy,  the very aggressive former friend who convinced me to buy that sofa... and a chair to match...and to paint half the homestead to go along with them. 

The sofa outlasted that toxic friendship by over a decade. 

We had other rooms to decorate and daughters to raise and put through college. Decorating stuff took a back seat to the better stuff. 

But it's Over the Hump Day!



Ain't she a beaut?



Please say yes because I'm probably going to have this sofa for the next two decades. That's the way we roll around here.  Besides, I very truly happen to love her. She is very, very, Debbie

Of course, I haven't named her Debbie. Who names a sofa after herself?  Even I'm not that goofy. 

Her name is Poppins...
Mary Poppins. 
'Cause she's practically perfect in every way. 

(Too bad I can't say the same for the lighting today...)



And that's all I have time for today. I'll be back soon to yak about the other hump. It's a huge one, too. At least for me, it is. The climbing of it has been keeping me out of Blog Land and in Crazy Land for two weeks now. Yes, I can get that obsessed. (Wait. Wasn't 2014 supposed to be the Year of Balance?) 

Happy Over the Hump Day!

*****

By the way, if you're wondering what I did with Cindy the Sofa,
 I offered it up to Miss Whimsy for her first apartment. 

She said, "Ummmmm... thank you?"


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

An Officer and a Gentleman: Tablescape Challenge


When Cuisine Kathleen first announced her wedding pattern tablescape challenge, we were absolutely certain that we wanted to join.  We just didn't know which wedding china we wanted to use. We've had a lot of weddings around here, after all,  and we have the china to prove it.  We have some beautiful patterns, too, ones bursting with color and  tablescape fodder.

But we chose this one instead.

It's the wedding pattern of the (not so) Newlywed Niece
Pearl Platinum by Lenox
Plain white. 
Trimmed in more white. 

That's OK.  We didn't choose it for the color anyway.
 We chose it in honor of a significant occasion which is taking place this week.  

No, it's not their anniversary. 

They tied the knot on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  Not that we weren't all thankful for him, but that isn't the reason that they chose the date. Actually, the date chose them instead. The groom is a military man, you see, and that's the first day that Uncle Sam said he might be available.

Uncle Sam has been pretty much intruding on their lives ever since.  In  nearly five years of marriage, they have shared only two anniversaries together. They won't be spending it together this year either.

Tomorrow, the Army Man heads to Afghanistan.  
He'll be there for the next year. 

His wife will  be home on the farm...
 tying yellow ribbons. 

So we took this table out by an old oak tree
 and tied some yellow ribbons too. 

 Then we filled the empty spaces  with daisies 
because they're just a daisy kind of couple.

She loves him...she loves him not...she loves him... she loves him not...

She loves him. 



Yes, I realize that proper table ladies do not scatter teacups willy-nilly on a table.  
They probably don't stick random daisies on saucers either, but I did it anyway. 

I'm pretty sure the rules are relaxed for pretend tables set for invisible people. 
(I hope so because I kept rearranging that stemware to suit my photo op notions.) 

Their crystal pattern is Marquis by Waterford
I love the simplicity of it.


Their flatware is Melon Bud by Gorham. 


And there you have it:

Tying Yellow Ribbons 'Round the Old Oak Tree...   

.... which, according to my husband, is actually a sweet gum tree.  

Well, oops. 

Regardless, I have had that song stuck in my head all day. 

And yes... I do indeed sound exactly like Tony Orlando. 

Admit it.  You knew I was going to say that...



But can we be serious for just a minute?

Please don't let the the dish playing and song singing fool you.
We're all pretty nervous around here right now.
We won't tell a lie.

But we're covering him in prayer for a safe trip home, and for once in our lives
  hoping that time actually does fly.  

We would deeply appreciate all your prayers as well.



May God hold you in His mighty hand, Captain McNephew. 
We'll be saving a place for you at the table. 

*****

Sharing with Let's Dish
and Tablescape Thursday

Monday, May 12, 2014

Smarter Than The Av-er-age Bear


As I mentioned yesterday, we had cause for a celebration around here this weekend.  It was a big one, too, big enough to lure a Practical One all the way from Capitol Hill.  It wasn't a Mothers Day celebration, either.  The fact that it happened to fall on that weekend was just a God thing. 

(Thanks, God.)   

No, big sister came home for a celebration of different sort. 
It was an auspicious occasion.    


Care to guess what it was?

Well, it's May... 
and it took place at Mercer University...
and somebody was wearing a funny hat...




... which according to all the smarty pants business majors in the family
 is bedecked with a tassel of "drab".  

Drab? Seriously?

Maybe to the rest of the world, it's drab
I choose to call it taupe instead. 



There was nothing whatsoever drab about our celebration.

There's nothing drab about our girl, either.
She's our Miss Whimsy, the little girl most likely to dance in the rain.

The girl who was just graduating from high school when I started writing this blog.

 Didn't we just move her and that zebra print bedding into the freshman dorm yesterday?

Yeah, I think so too.



One final chat with Jesse Mercer






Then it was time to step out and join
the rest of the Mercer graduates in the family.

What we lack in creativity, we make up for in loyalty.


Congratulations  Miss Whimsy...

You did it!

The sky's the limit.


Now go follow the rest of your dreams.

And as they say in Mercer Land....






We love you and are so proud of you!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

It's An Auspicious Occasion!

Remember a few weeks ago when I talked about my empty nest Easter?

Remember how I said that The Practical One didn't come home for that holiday
 because she was coming home in a few weeks for another
auspicious occasion?

Remember that?
Anyone?

Well, guess what happened this 
Mother's Day weekend...

An auspicious occasion. 

And even though the weather didn't cooperate one iota for the pictures...



Wellllll.... I. guess. you'll. say...

What can make me feel that way? 


In my head, I sound just like The Temptations.

You'll have to wait until tomorrow to hear all about the auspicious occasion.
I'm busy today, gathering the moments with the two little girls
whose very presence in my life make every day a reason to celebrate.

Happy Mother's Day
from one happy mom! 

*****
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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A Wing and a Prayer...Chair


If I've ever told you that I'm praying for you,  I really do pray, 
and here's the chair where I sit to do it.


 It's a worn old wing back in the corner of my living room. I call it my prayer chair.  Actually, it's one of two chairs because Sir Lotsa Hair has one to match.  I pray in mine; he prays in his. Most of the time, though, we pray there together.

I know they're outdated. We've had them for nearly twenty years now, and they weren't even new when we got them. My father had them in his den way back in the 20th century.

Old things have a history, though. They've seen stuff. Ours have watched us raise our family, one prayer at a time. They've run the gamut from the highest highs to the lowest lows.

From praise and thanksgiving
to petition and confession. 

From job's lost
to job's found
. (and lost again... and found.again.)

From college scholarships
to college graduation.


You can see why the choice of  a replacement for them posed a bit of a problem. It wasn't just the sentimentality of it, either. There was another reason why I was having trouble deciding on a replacement.  It's about the style.

Here's the thing: I don't really care what's in and trendy anymore. Two and a half years ago, I decided that I was too 50  for that.  I just want to surround myself with stuff that I love, and I love wing back chairs.  I love the lines of them... and the height of them... and the historical look of them that works and plays so well with my old family pieces.

They still sell wing backs, of course. You just don't see them all that much in the showrooms 'cause they're not really hip. The newer ones are larger and more overstuffed. They tend to come with a grumpy little price tag, too, at least all the ones that I liked.

And then, there's the head thing.

I had a notion stuck in my Debbie head of  exactly what I wanted  them to look like. Unfortunately, it's a well known fact that random Debbie- head notions simply do not exist in the physical realm

Never. 
Ever, ever. ever, ever... 

Between all of that and the unfortunate carpet incident, I finally decided to shuck the new chair idea and reupholster my trusty old prayer chairs instead.  I had a notion in my head about fabric, too. What I wanted was the look of cotton ticking without the fabric actually being cotton ticking. I wanted something more upholster-y and a teeny bit dressier.

 Something like this:




Thankfully,  it's easier to find a piece of fabric living in your head than it is to find a piece of furniture. I found mine at  Peachtree Fabrics Direct. for ten bucks a yard.  It compliments the sofa swatch exactly the way I want it to, and the fabric was here in two days.

Want to see my prayer chair now?


Please ignore the wall color. It's going to be painted.
The saga of Debbie and the Paint Chips is a post all it's own.

And there's this  pillow fabric to consider...


Sure, I haven't actually made the pillows yet,
 but...



 One  living room decorating decision down,
 4,728 to go...


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