Thursday, March 31, 2011

We Wobble

This morning I was watching the clouds move and I thought about how amazing it is that we can walk upon a moving ball of rock and how babies can't get their bearings right away. They don't walk for about a year. Is it because gravity is such a human encumbrance, because we are meant to walk in heaven? Then we we get older, we get a little tippy again. Are we getting ready to be weightless in heaven?

I was also thinking about the false self and the true self. As a parent, we don't count the hugs and kisses. We should. We tend to count our child's accomplishments, their acts of brilliance, their ability to pick up on grown up responsibilities. I think the false self (the self we create and shine up so that we look good, sound good, impress) is the counting self and the true self is the hugger. The true self surrenders to holy moments and heavenly investments. The true self is the sheep that gives up control (even though I don't think we are as "in control" as we tend to think we are!)

We set out on this indescribable journey with such innocent and feeble tools. We go. We wobble here for a while. In light of eternity, it's a tiny amount of time. He packs it with generous helpings of grace and reveals to us what we can understand, which is a small body of knowledge. It's what we can handle.
Oh, He is good.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Cactus and Cuties

I'm home again!
Here are cactus just for you.

Here are two cuties I love very, very , very much.
Thank you, God, for my mama and my papa.
Thank you for my humble home and my good husband.
For family.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Spring Break

Today after school, I head to the airport and fly down to see my mama and my papa! Woo hoo! I can't wait to see them! I am looking forward to a little Arizona sunshine, some good coffee, hugs and kisses, and some rest and relaxation. I'll miss Bill and the kids and grandkids but I'll be back soon.

I hope the kids at school have a nice break. We all really need it.
Happy Friday to all of you. What are you doing this weekend?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Holding Hands

Bill met with a friend on Saturday and that friend shared a powerful memory. He shared the best memory of his father (still living). When he was around twelve, he and his dad were at the airport. His dad asked, "I know that pretty soon you'll be too old for this, but would you hold my hand?" Ben did and now cherishes the memory of his father's big strong hand clasping his. Bill got very teary, thinking of how often we let go of our Father's hand. We're too independent.

I'm going to go hold His hand now.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spring Tonic

I'm pausing. I'm completely pausing. I am completely TIRED.

I'm very thankful that the Good Shepherd is up in front. One foot in front of the other, I'll follow the sheep in front of me and we'll keep going where He leads.

Waiting for directions . . . (Gumbo Lily photo)

and fuzzy, with a cobwebby head, I shall turn when the crook pushes and feed on truth tonic, tip my silly head in confusion when the other voices say, "Go, goat, go." What are they talking about? Silly. I'm a sheep and if I get lost, the Shepherd will come looking for me. I belong to Him and His group. Whew.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Where's Mary?

It's a good March day (Happy St. Patrick's Day!) and the wind is roaring outside. I'm wishing Mary Poppins would ring my doorbell, step into the entry way with deliberate "can do" attitude, and volunteer to be my personal maid. She doesn't have to call me Mi Lady or anything, just be my right-hand woman for a while. At school, she could stay with the students so I could run down and retrieve copies (well, let me say WALK down the stairs because my knee still pinches) or make myself a quick cup of coffee. She could help me pass out papers while the kids read and write. Here at home she could straighten my bed side table. I just haven't had time and it's getting so piled high with books and bric-a-brac. She might be willing to clean the refrigerator. She could fill the bird feeders.
Before I went back to college to get my teaching certificate, I was a maid.
I would whip through other ladies' houses in four hours. I'd scrub their stoves, shine their showers, dust their stuff (one woman even had a harp!). I changed sheets, dusted corners, and hauled vacuum cleaners around, trying not to bang up furniture and walls. It was HARD work, but I survived. I was compelled to do a good job because they paid me but also because I knew it must feel so good to come home to a shiny house.
I do like to think about how nice it would be if I was some one's maid, watching for every little need or desire, trying to make things easier, and just being there for them. I'm reading Elizabeth Goudge's The Eliot Trilogy and when the long time maid of the main character dies, she misses her with all her heart. I feel sure that I could be the maid or the "Mi Lady" and be equally happy. You?

Now I shall find a green shirt in my ironing basket and hope that kids at school don't pinch each other.
Mags (my delightful Irish friend) suggested stew for dinner but I'm not organized enough today. We'll have fish. I'll play an Irish jig for the students or show them some lovely Ireland photos and talk about St. Patrick.

I leave you with this lovely Lisbeth Zwerger painting. Don't you love the child looking in? You have to love the white hen. What is she thinking?
Oh, life is very good. People are good. Bad things happen and people step in to serve and comfort. Be a Mary.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

An Altar

"Or I can set a little altar, in the world or in my heart. I can stop what I am doing long enough to see where I am, who I am there with, and how awesome the place is. I can flag one more gate to heaven - one more patch of ordinary earth with ladder marks on it - where the divine traffic is heavy when I notice it and even when I do not. I can see it for once, instead of walking right past it, maybe even setting a stone or saying a blessing before I move on to wherever I am due next."
An Altar in the World, Barbara Brown Taylor
March 13, 2011
This is my beginning of the days before Easter. This marks my call back to my Savior.
Today I shall make one altar.
Blessed are the poor in spirit.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Sweet Peas, December Trees

The sweet peas are planted in the old wooden barrel. It's so easy to push the round seeds into the dirt. I can't wait until summer when they will wrap themselves around the iron heart trellis! I also planted my December trees. I bought them for centerpieces at Christmas time and they were longing for placement in the garden. Done! Someday, when I'm a very old lady, they'll be tall and bushy on this little plot of ours.

On Saturday, Kelli and I and the girls went for a long walk on the trail. Daddy helped us load the buggies.

It's a short drive to the starting place. The loop is long but beautiful!

Kelli got us all organized and we were off!

Millie loved the fresh March air!

I pushed Miss Bug's stroller. She kept saying, "This is FUN! This is FUN!"

Cute horses just a short hop over the ditch. They were resting and didn't mind me taking their photograph!

Kelli had the harder push!

Birdie liked her hike! Maybe you can have a "free hands, free heart" walk outside today. Can you? It's snowy here but I am still thinking spring! I will go sockless, wear cool clothes. Hmmmm. I might buy a flower at the grocery store this morning. Looking outside at the steely sky . . . yes, I need a flower.
Don't forget to shop for your kite! We all need one. We can't waste the gusty March winds!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Mama Annie

Hello! I found another Ann on Etsy thanks to The Crafty Stitchers. Because she just arrived, I'm still looking at her from afar. Today, I may examine her closely. Do you like her dress? Her baby? You can never have enough Anns, books, funky shoes, good smelling potions, dishes, flannel clothes, or yarn. That's what I always say.

My new friend Sara sent me TWO Elizabeth Goudge novels. I ordered Pilgrim's Inn from Amazon and I expect it soon. Sara's so sweet to share some Goudge with me. Frances offered to, too. Jody at Gumbo Lily is the reader who first mentioned her. Blog Land can be Reading Land, don't you think?

THIS is a wonderful book I ordered from my crafty book club. There are many baby sweater patterns inside and some amazing scarf patterns. I have the original One-Skein Wonders, too. It's also fantastic!

The projects in THIS book are just my cup of tea, too. It's VERY inspiring!

The Amazon recommending people sure have MY number. This is a funky and colorful little "creativity day-by-day" book. I thought I could use some of the ideas in my upcoming Writer's Workshop class. So, I'm going to put my computer away now and pull out the books, journal, pencils and pens . . .
Even though some of the kids are coming for dinner, I think I can still use the dining room table for some real cutting and pasting, drawing and writing . . . sound like fun?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Thoughts

Do you know about Richard Scarry? I found his enchanting artwork when I was thirteen years old. I was babysitting a neighbor's three year old and when it was time for bed and reading stories, Sally reached for one of his books. I fell in love. Busy Town was full of activity, cute animals, hidden Gold Bugs, tiny cars, and houses full of domestic bliss. This is my kind of happy.

See what I mean? Don't you LOVE the pig in the cozy bed? The horse sporting a snazzy blanket? The GOAT? Oh, I want to scratch the kitty's ears as she snoozes in the laundry basket.

Knock on the pink door. This bunny family will welcome you into their happy home!

Adorable (and a sweet reminder of Fairy Land!)

Oh no! A bunny toothache!
I've had some "Granny injuries" this week. I loved holding my little muppet, Aria, on Sunday. My granny arm is pain prone, however.
Over ten years ago, I broke my collar bone at the water slide park and the muscle in my arm near the break often hurts. Oh, and then I have a "ruby slippers" related injury, too. Somehow when I wear my ruby slippers my knee gets irritated. I'm on the mend though, thanks to my rubber shoes and my wrist brace (which somehow helps my arm pain, weird!).
Isn't the human body amazing? The kids at school thought my wrist brace was funny considering my granny injury.
Tonight is parent/teacher conferences. Tomorrow, too.
I like talking to my students' parents. The bonus: Friday off!
Woo hoo!
I'm looking out at the prettiest pink and blue sky. Gumbo Lily has pretty sky, too. She's lambing now and it's cold up there. Her link is on my sidebar. Go there and read her post today. You'll be very blessed.
Blessings to you ALL around. Richard Scarry's artwork is one of my happy thoughts and I wish you many sweet happy thoughts, too.
May we all soar and smile today.