Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Blank Pages Can Be Intimidating

Greetings from the bower on Church St.

Yes, blank pages can be intimidating sometimes.

I sat looking at this one for quite some time thinking about what to say and thinking that I don't have anything to say today. But then...

Hasn't life taken a strange turn lately? I feel like I'm in a B-rated movie at best and a nightmare on bad days. What happened to my somewhat orderly life? Oh yeah, a little, teeny, tiny virus raised its ugly head and roared the world over. Dang. Sometimes even the tiniest among us can raise such havoc! Some days it feels a little surreal, doesn't it?

I may have mentioned before, I don't remember, but I lean toward hermit tendencies so staying at home isn't such a problem for me when it's my choice. I'm finding now that I have to I can feel a mite rebellious about it. Of course I'm being a good citizen and only going out for essentials and an occasional ride in the county to keep my sanity in check. That doesn't keep me from dreaming about running away to see my children and grandchildren or my favorite aunt who lives a little over an hour away and friends still living in my hometown. I ache to see them and hug them. Share a meal or two. Shop in the stores without seeing a mask.

I am confident I will be able to again. This won't last forever, even though some days it feels like it will.

I'm finding joy and gratitude in the daffodils and hyacinth blooming my garden,
the little buds on the maples,
the blue skies,
the warm days.

Look for the joy in nature, in the earth waking from its winter slumber.
It will okay.
God is in His heaven and all will be right with the world again.


Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Virus Boredom Busters

Blessings from the bower on Church St.

How are you holding up? Are you finding enough to keep your mind and hands busy?

I decided it was time to do some crafts today, so I finally opened the "Bless His Name," kit. I shared the kit a few posts back. Beautiful tags and a study of the names of Jesus.

I'm putting it in a Traveler's Notebook instead of my Bible or putting the cards on a key chain of some kind like others are doing.

I covered the notebook in purple paper.

Title page.

First name in the study is Almighty.

I would appreciate your prayers for two people.
1. My 92 year old MIL, Mary took a little tumble on Saturday and has a mild sprain in her right ankle. Thank you, Lord it wasn't worse! No trip to the doctor needed or the hospital for x-rays.
2. A dear friend, Darrel found out he has intestinal cancer.
Thanking you in advance for your prayers.

1. A beautiful day in the mountains
2. My family and friends are still safe and well from the virus
3. God's grace and mercy


Revelation 1:8
"I am the Alpha and the Omega,"
says the Lord,
"who is, and who was,
and who is to come,
the Almighty."

Thursday, April 2, 2020

A New Way of Living

Welcome from the bower on Church St.

"What day is this?"

That is the most commonly asked question in our house these days and not only by my 92 year old MIL.

I've lost my anchor. Tuesdays I'm normally at the church with my Covenant Group in the morning, lunch with the Community Lunch group at noon followed by our afternoon Christian Book Club. It's a wonderful day full of fellowship, laughter and studies. Wednesday the housekeeper/caregiver comes for four hours so hubby and I can enjoy lunch together at some restaurant in the bigger town over the hill and then do the weekly shopping. That is all gone now. My life was ordered and because I had those anchors in my week, I usually knew what day it was.

I don't like this befuddled mind I am now living with. I'm the organized one. Everything is not always in its place, but I have files in my drawers and on my computer. I know where things are and everyone else's calendar of events. I'm the go to person if you can't remember, because I've got you covered and I've got your back. Or, at least I used to be.

Tuesday nights at our house is Taco Tuesday. I only use a 1/2lb of hamburger, because MIL and I only eat one each, hubby has two and that is plenty of meat. I opened a new taco seasoning packet and dumped the whole thing in. I usually get three nights of tacos out of packet. It was way too much seasoning and tasted...not so good. Hubby just smiled at me. He understood.

I just had to share what this little invisible virus is doing to my mind. In comparison to the people out there who are sick and dying, this is nothing. No one in my family has it yet. I know I lead a blessed life and thank God everyday for it.

But I miss my life.
I miss my brain.
I'm scared for all us.
I'm grieving the tremendous loss of life this virus is causing.
Can you imagine the grieving that is happening in Italy with over 10,000 dead? If the person who died only has two relatives that is 20,000 people grieving at once! I can only imagine the gut wrenching sobbing that is happening there and in heaven.

We have a lot of introverts in our family on both sides, including myself. One of them said the other day, "I'm an introvert and I find myself wanting to hug strangers."

I've always loved the quote, "Out of everything bad, something good always happens."

There is a lot of good happening out there. Look for it. It will help your sanity.

1. A sunny day with the Son
2. My family's health
3. Books to read

May the peace of Christ be always with you.
God Bless you.
Stay safe.

Numbers 6:24-26
The Lord bless and keep you;
the Lord make His face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you
and give you peace.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Gratitude is Everything

Grateful in the bower on Church St.

 There are teeny, tiny snowflakes falling outside my window. They are coming down in a frenzy; like they can't quite decide which way to fall. Snowflakes in March. It's a good thing and I'm grateful. California needs more snow and rain or we will be facing another draught. That would not be good.

"To stay strong in crisis, you have to exercise your gratitude muscle. Flex your gratitude muscle to fight off fear."  Ann Voskamp

Ann Voskamp's blog today was full of gratitude and very inspiring.

The thing I like the most about her article is being thankful for the little things and taking pictures of those things.
Here's the three things I'm grateful for today:

The teapot elephant from my son and girlfriend. It makes me think of them every morning when I see it on my kitchen counter.

The daffodils in my yard. They are my favorite flower and always make me smile.

My Willow Tree angels. This is one of several I own. I'm sure you'll see more of them in days to come. 

We will get through this crisis with God's help. Be assured He is here in the midst of things. All around us and in us. 


God, I long to dance again.
My desire is to move my feet in heaven's rhythm.
I have been stuck for so long in this valley;
Feeling lost and alone.
Would you grant me heaven's song today and the ears to hear?
So that my feet might move and I once again
Begin to dance along with Your love song for me.  Amen
(Sue Johnson)

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Happy St. Paddy's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day from the bower on Church St.

The corned beef is in the crock pot as we speak.
Didn't seem to be a run on them, thank heaven.

Just a small 3lb roast for the three of us. Plenty of left overs for a sandwich or two or three. Even grabbed some hoagie rolls for the sammies tomorrow.

I must say, I was a little overwhelmed after shopping yesterday. We last shopped 5 days ago and although I was prepared for a lack of paper products, I wasn't quite prepared for how Walmart's shelves were so bare. We have a super store, not a humongous one, but a fairly good sized store and the flour, oatmeal and pasta were gutted, among other things. Seriously? I went to four stores to find flour. None. Now why that bothers me more than toilet paper I have no idea. I guess I can improvise if I run out of that, but when you're out of flour there is no substitute. The whole thing just came crashing down on me last night while I was preparing dinner. I was almost in tears. "This is insane," I thought to myself. The media has terrified us to this point. I'm not even thinking of the virus, I'm thinking of the people and how they are feeling! We should be cautious, but for heaven's sake, did you need to scare us this bad?!! I'm sorry, but I don't think so. Last year 38,000 people died in the US from influenza A and no one panicked like this. People die every year by the thousands from the flu. I know this one is a little different, but still. Again, we should be very careful, I'm not saying we shouldn't, I'm just thinking we didn't need to take it to this degree. My opinion. Sorry if I've offended you.

Just needed to share that. I'm feeling sad and afraid, but hopeful. Never let go of your hope. Like I said yesterday, God is here and He's got this.

1. Family and friends who love me
2. His word for comfort
3. Corned beef, potatoes and cabbage

Be safe out there.

Matthew 7:7
Ask, and it will be given to you;
seek, and you will find;
knock, and it will be opened to you.

Monday, March 16, 2020


Hopeful at the bower on Church St.

Trying and scary times. And now we've added a virus.
No reported cases in my county yet. I'm so thankful for that and praying for others.
Those with stock in toilet paper must doing well financially. :)
We'll tell our future generations that 2020 was the year of the toilet paper crisis. I don't mean to make light of the situation, but it seems so silly how people react to any given situation. Terror makes us do funny things.
I'm turning to scripture for strength and hope. One that comes to mind is:

Psalm 34:19
Many are the afflictions of the righteous, 
But the Lord delivers him out of all of them. 

Here are more Psalms of thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving: 30; 32; 34; 40; 65;67;75;92;107;124;92;116;118

Paul tells us in Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Some situations are hard to be thankful for, but we can always thank God for being there with us. He never leaves us. Nothing, no thing, or person can separate us from the love of God. (Romans 8:31-39)

I'm continuing my Lenten studies, just not sharing them daily with you. Today's verse in the Lenten cards devo is Matthew 7:7-11. I also was given Matthew 7:7 to read in my "Jesus Calling," devo. Think God is trying to tell something?

Matthew 7:7-11 New International Version (NIV)

Ask, Seek, Knock

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
(copied from biblegateway.com)

The other Lenten study kit I haven't started yet is called "Bless His Name," by Beloved Society through Illustrated Faith. I meant to share this earlier and forgot, but it's not just for Lent. You can study the names of Jesus anytime. I love the tags!! The colors are just what I like. Here's a peek at the kit.

All kinds of great things to create with! My lighting isn't the greatest this morning, but I think you get the idea of what is included. If I have time later, I want to do a Bible journaling page. I haven't done one of those in over a year. Where has the time gone?

1. A God who sticks to me like glue!
2. Crafts to keep me occupied in trying times and keep me focused on God.
3. Bible verses to comfort me.

I'm praying for you.

Blank Pages Can Be Intimidating

Greetings from the bower on Church St. Yes, blank pages can be intimidating sometimes. I sat looking at this one for quite some time thi...