Showing posts from October, 2012

Family Culture

Family culture is such a wonderful thing.  It is the things in your family that mark your family as, well, your family!

In our family we like to have people over.  We like toplay games, some of us more than others.  We watch movies together, learn together.  I guess you could say that we spend a lot of time together.

The funny thing is we are all so busy!  Lindsay and Emma work 2 jobs each, I work here and in our store, Tim works his crazy hours at his work...but somehow we all end up together at some point during the day.

This liking to hang out together did not happen by chance.  We made deliberate choices to foster family closeness.  We worked through personality issues, we keep short accounts with each other, we laugh together a lot, and we practice forgiveness.

Our home is a fun place - it's messy sometimes, it's loud sometimes, but it is a place we love to be.  We also love to take road trips together!

I am thankful for God's grace in our lives.  So thankful for nuturing …

The Day After

After the wind howled all day and night, I thought the leaves would be gone from the trees!  It is still raining that is why I only took photos from the doorways of my house.  This view is out the front door.

The view out the back door, off the trees down as far as I can see, and the fence seems to be intact too!  The trees you see near the play house don't have very good roots.  The original owners of the house, cut these trees down - they line the creek - and did not grind out the stumps.  So multiple trees grew out of each stump.  We have lost many over the years, and we were sure several more would have been lost in this storm but so far everything seems fine.

The view into the pasture.  This is the trailer Tim is rehabbing.  He had to fix rusted out spots, weld things, put on new fenders...he has the front painted but needs a few dry days with temps over 55.  The folks he's working on this for took a while to get it inspected and to get the trailer to him, months …

Hurricane Sandy Has Arrived

She actually arrived yesterday in the form of light rain.

Overnight the rain increased and this morning when I let the dogs out the winds were light and breezy about 10-15 mph.  Now they are up to about 25 mph and are supposed to increase to about 45 mph sustained, with gust of 60 mph.

They were facing north - into the rain and winds...

They kids were out making observations for science.

Tim is setting up the generator in case we need it.  His work stays open no matter what, so he is supposed to go in later.  I hope they take the step to close, since the storm is supposed to be it's worse here while he is supposed to be at work and coming home.

Winds have increased since I started to write this.  

There is a lot of reading going on here today - somehow a rainy day is just right for that.  

Trust you are all snugged in safe where you are.

We're Ready, I Think

This is Sandy's projected path from yesterday.

We are in that white space in Pennsylvania.

We are nearly ready - just have to move the chicken coop and take down the awning from the deck.

I am thankful that we have been stocking a food pantry for a few years.  It makes these kinds of events, including winter storms, easier to deal with, as most of the preparation is already in place.

If you are going to be affected by this storm, know that I will be praying for you.  Cheryl, Vee, Becky, Katy,I am thinking of you and trusting you to God's care.

I am sure we'll have our stories to tell. Can't wait to hear about them.

Mid-Morning At The Cottage

A trip into the city to drop Emma off at the shoppe, returning via our local dairy for milk and the delightful surprise that they now carry our favorite apple cider. A quick stop at the apple orchard for some apples - then home.  I love my cottage - it welcomes me.  I took this photo from the corner - zooming in a bit and then I cropped it - wish I could crop the speed limit sign (it's twisted a bit so you can't see the numbers in this photo) out of the photo.  Oh, and the antenna should go - we have never used it!

Autumn is quickly fading here - perhaps it knows a huge storm, "Frankenstorm", is on it's way.

My darling friend jAne at Tickleberry Farm was the inspiration for our breakfast this can find her post here.

Farm fresh eggs, sea salt, fresh cracked pepper, baby spinach, farmer's was delightful.  Real food.  Yum.

Thank you for praying for me yesterday.  We had a really good meeting and the website should be open for business Wedne…

Putting On My Business Woman Hat

Tim and I are headed out this morning for a meeting with our marketing guy.  His company is building our new website - it is almost ready.  We have a few things to discuss with him about it, but they are small issues.

The thing is for me is that I don't always think of myself as a business woman.  I am a wife and mother, a daughter and a friend, but business woman?

When we did our event at Hershey a few weeks ago, I had been feeling like we would show up and be the "country cousins" so to speak.  I mean a huge fur company was there and a big diamond store!  I worried that we would be seen as 'lesser than' and be fish out of water.

However, as soon as we arrived we were treated as if we belonged there.  We were one of their vendors, one of the co-ordinators said "I'm so excited your here.  It's such great exposure for your store.  I'd never heard of you before."  Our business was booming that day, while others around us didn't do as well.

I l…

Late October In The Garden

Just a few quick photos this morning taken with my iphone.  

I love the color the hydrangea has mellowed into.  So beautiful.

These are a mum that look so cheerful and daisy like.  They add a lot of color into the barren garden at this time of year.

My Red Sunset Maples are finally turning....

It makes me so happy to see them.  They are one of the last to change color on our property and it extends the beauty by a week or so....

Thanks for all your thoughts yesterday.  They were similar to what I was thinking so that is encouraging.
Of course, I'll show you when we are done!  I'm excited to have another space that I can decorate and make welcoming for those who visit our shoppe!

It's Nearly November

It was a shock to me too!  I was driving by a theater here the other day and their sign mentioned that their CHRISTMAS show started November 1st.  

It was like a shock to me!  I went "CHRISTMAS!?"  Wow.  Yes, really.  It is almost the holiday season.  

I am looking for some advice from you.

As you know, we own a retail store (Women's Accessories) and I am wondering when to decorate for Christmas.

I have a few thoughts on this -

1.  I hate when the stores are decorated too soon, ignoring Thanksgiving altogether.

2.  However decorating for Christmas helps remind people that they need that gift for Aunt Suzie and wouldn't that darling bracelet be perfect.

3.  At home I personally wait until the day after Thanksgiving to decorate, and we keep up the decor until New Years Day.  It feels wrong to eat Thanksgiving dinner with a Christmas tree up.

4. The shoppe is different than my home - it is a place of business. 

So, I am looking for your thoughts.  

When do we …

Snapshots From My Week

I had a full week, as is the norm in my life these days.  Much of it is driving people to work, etc, but some of it is just fun stuff.  
Yesterday afternoon, after our fellowship meal at church, there was an airsoft game that took place in our woods and pasture.  The rest of us enjoyed the cool air and a campfire in our fire ring.  As dinner came we did the easy thing and ate salad and roasted hotdogs and the biggest marshmallows ever!
As the evening wore on, a couple of guys from church, started playing the guitar and mandolin, singing songs that one of them wrote.  Such wonderful, worshipful songs written from the scriptures, and not recorded anywhere!  This man is leaving soon with his family to return to Ireland where they work as missionaries.  We've loved having their family as part of our church family for 4 months now.  We'll miss them terribly!
I told you about the pumpkin carving and bonfire that took place here this week too.  So much fun....

We went to a fire and safe…

A Gift From My Son

Kyle very proudly brought me something held behind his back this afternoon.

He told me, "guess what it is."  

I said something silly like "a pickle" since that usually gets a funny response from him.

He said "Mom....."  Then brought it out.

The most beautiful leaves from one of my Red Sunset maples, that are now beginning to turn.

I said "Oh, Kyle!  They're beautiful!  They're my favorite!"  

He said "I know!  I got them from one of the trees in the front. And I did it like this," he added, pointing to his feet with only socks on.

I grinned, and expressed my thanks.

He grinned and went away pleased with himself.

I wasn't about to complain about him going out without his shoes on such a rainy day.  No way. 

I love that boy.  He melts my heart.

Another Fun Blog Party!

My dear friend Cheryl is hosting a link up party where we can share our Hospitality Tips.

You can join the fun here...
 I am so happy to join her in talking about hospitality.  I love hospitality and have seen the blessing and fruit of it over the years.

I asked my husband years ago now what he would like for us to be involved in as a family - what we could do together.  His quick response was that he would like us to invite people to our home - he wanted us to be hospitable on a regular basis.  I love having people over so this was a win-win for us!

The kids didn't always like the preparatory time - I would drive them pretty hard about cleaning up etc.  Finally we got a system of cleaning that basically allowed us to have a tidy house in 15 minutes, so we were all a lot less stressed!

My tips about hospitality are not anything earth shattering or new.  We are just regular people with a regular income.  We have had masses of people over all at the same time, and we have had just one pe…

Note Card Party!

These four photos are my choice for Note Cards this month.  I added a frame to them on  That is a fun and easy site to use for photo editing.

If you want to see more beautiful photos, join us at Vee's monthly Note Card Party.  It's so much fun!

I'm Here

and after a busy but great weekend, I have hit the ground running once again!

I'll definitely post tomorrow - so much to tell you about the events we did on Friday and Saturday, a great day of fellowship on Sunday and the websites near completion!  Finally!

Meanwhile, I have been able to read your blogs and comment, which has been fun.  

A worthwhile series to read this month is my friend Cheryl's series on '31 days of Hospitality - Not to Impress but to Bless'.  It is so good and encouraging.  The link is to her latest post!

Now I am off to do some buying for the store - I need to replace those bracelets and rings that sold this weekend!

Let's Chat

Pull up a chair, grab a cup of tea or coffee, if you prefer and let's settle in for a bit of a chat.  Doesn't that sound nice?

I have lots rolling around this brain of mine and I love talking with you and hearing what you are up to as well.

Emma and I got up early and headed about an hour away to shop at a wholesale place.  We needed some display pieces, so we don't have to strip the store when we have an event.  We found some nice ones, and also some nice jewelry.  They even had the cute children's bracelets back in stock that are so popular.

Speaking of events we have two this weekend.  The Hearts in Style and Song event at the Hotel Hershey on Friday benefits the Penn State Hershey Heart and Vascular Institute.  It is a great event with a luncheon, fashion show, silent auction, and vendors.  It is already sold out.  This is our first time being vendors for this event but we are excited to be in this beautiful hotel and a part of this fundraiser.

On Saturday, Rachel and …

She Made Me Cry

Oh, yes she did!

If you want to see how, go read her blog post for today.  

Love you friend!


Sneak Peek Revealed!

On my birthday Tim and I went to several furniture stores that sell "fine" used furniture.  We found this loveseat in just the right colors for our home.

One of the things we had to consider is the scale of the furniture, how we live in our space and how many people we want to be able to sit on it.  I was surprised at how large couches and love seats and chairs are these days!  We needed something on a bit smallish scale.

This loveseat is perfect for our space and we like it very much.

It also is a dual reclining loveseat.  So cool!
It works very well, and it holds quite a few people at a time.

We also got this chair from Ikea to replace a chair that we put out of its misery.  We tend to use up our furniture - the previous chair, a recliner, we'd had for about 16 years. 

Today my friend Amy came and spent the day with her children.  Her son went with Tim and Kyle to a men's event for church.  She brought me these delicious pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting!  Oh …