Hospitality, Friendship, Encouragement

Tuesday, May 31, 2016


My dear friend Vee, lost her precious husband on Saturday.  On the Sunday before his aorta tore and he was life flighted and underwent 6 hours of surgery.  He was in a coma all that week, and early in the morning on Saturday the 28th, the Lord called that good man home.  I am thankful to be able to say that I met John in person and he was such a kind and gracious man.  I'm looking forward to heaven a bit more now.  Vee - you are loved.

I read a really good blog post on Memorial Day regarding expectations.  You can read it here.  I say a hearty Amen, to her thoughts.

Work on the bathroom stepped up a notch on Monday.  After gathering all we needed on Saturday, I filled holes and sanded a tad and began cutting in the paint in the hall bathroom.  I didn't like it.  It was a bit deeper in color than the color I had taken in to try to match.  I was going for soft and tones of white/neutrals and this was just tan.  Bleh.  I stopped what I was doing and had a phone conversation with Tim.

After he got home from PAINTING a business today, he helped me mix the paint with white paint we already had and we lightened it up and went for it.  It looks different in different light and the main light is off the wall right now so we only have the overhead fan light.  I'll take a few photos along the journey, and we'll see how it turns out.  Its not bad already - its just not exactly what I had in mind.  I'm sure you know what I mean.

Today is Rachel's birthday!  She's 17, so hard to believe!  She is a delight to our family, and we are so thankful for her.  I'm grateful to say that she is not only my daughter, but she is my friend.

I am thankful for the relationship I have with all my girls (including my daughter in law), and with my Mom.  Last night a few of us went to see the new film based on Jane Austen's book Lady Susan.  It's called Love and Friendship, and we laughed out loud in some parts of this movie.  It was very enjoyable and so nice to go out together to see it.

Friendships, between family or friends has to be cultivated.  They take work to maintain and to sustain.  Some are easy, and some are harder, but usually they are worth keeping and investing in.  Of course sometimes, the relationship gets to be one sided, or there are legitimate issues that require you to establish clear boundaries,  or even to end the relationship.  I've had the opportunity to work through some relationships in my life and I've been so glad, that even though it may have been painful, it was worth it.  There have been a few that I had to let go, and that was the right thing to do.  Sometimes its hard to know what the right thing to do is in these situations, but if we walk closely to the Lord and ask Him for his thoughts about it, He is happy to give us direction.

There are a lot more ponderings in this mind - Oh, if you only knew!  But I think that's enough for today.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Memorial Day

Memorial Day, Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania Photographic Print

"It is, in a way, an odd thing to honor those who died in defense of our country, in defense of us, in wars far away. The imagination plays a trick. We see these soldiers in our mind as old and wise. We see them as something like the Founding Fathers, grave and gray haired. But most of them were boys when they died, and they gave up two lives -- the one they were living and the one they would have lived. When they died, they gave up their chance to be husbands and fathers and grandfathers. They gave up their chance to be revered old men. They gave up everything for our country, for us. And all we can do is remember." 

                                                                        - Ronald Reagan


U.S. Army Soldiers Place Flags in Front of the Gravesites in Arlington National Cemetery Photographic Print


Thankful for those who paid the ultimate price, and to their families who also have paid.

If you ever get a chance to watch the movie called Taking Chance, with Kevin Bacon, do it.  It is an amazing movie and you'll need a lot of tissues.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Garden: Peonies In Bloom

One of my favorite times of the year is here - The Peonies are in bloom!

 There are actually two different kinds here.  The ones above are from my front garden and have the most divine scent.  These below are nearly the same color, though if you look carefully you will see the shapes of the petals are different.

These peonies are so gorgeous every year.

The pale pinks are not in bloom yet.  Hopefully in a few days. Those peonies are so beautiful, but don't have much scent.

What's blooming in your garden?

Joining Bernideen and Sandi!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Progress On the Bathroom

Today I painted the vanity in the hall bathroom.  You can read about the direction I am headed with it here

 You can see the color of the 1980's oak cabinet on the doors.  Sorry for the poor lighting.  This was taken midday.  

I used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White.  This is after one coat of paint.


I did two coats of paint, then wax.

I took the original handles off and painted them a silver tone and then put them back on.

I'm very happy with how it turned out!  It looks so much better and I now know the color I am going to paint the walls, too.   I will be removing the picket fencing and the shelf that is currently in the bathroom, and I think I will be replacing the shower curtain, as well.

We'll be buying our paint this weekend, as there are tons of great sales due to Memorial Day, and then I'll be working on this project next week!  I'm so happy to finally have this project underway!

Joining Bernideen and Sandi!

Garden In Late May

Most of my gardens are not worth mentioning right now.  This cold spring has finally changed this week to a warm early summer and I am hoping this helps the gardens.

I mentioned the other day that the iris' had begun to bloom,

and that the Zephirine Drouhin rose bush was about to burst with blooms
Poor munched on leaves!

This is the rose this morning!

I'm not a great gardener, but I know I need to give some attention to this bush.  I see some black spot in this photo.  

My peonies remain closed, but they are so close!  I'm thinking this warm weather will help!

 The dainty white iris' have bloomed now, too!

 The Echinacea (purple coneflower) is coming on strong

 The sweet Bleeding heart grew well and had delightful blooms this spring,

 Here is a Annabelle Hydrangea that was gifted to me!  It's got some blooms started on it!  Very excited about this hydrangea!

And this large Hollyhock!  I love old fashioned flowers in my garden to enjoy and to cut for the house.

We are getting mulch soon, and I spied a few weeds that need to be pulled.  The picket fence is going to get a few new sections, so it hasn't been repainted yet.  These things take time and money and with starting our business last August, we've had to choose carefully where both are allocated.    We did just talk about it last evening so I think we'll set a bit aside for this garden, and hopefully have a few non rainy Saturdays when we have the time to get to these kinds of projects.

Joining Laura, Stacey, Jemma, and Laura at Thoughts of Home on Thursday.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Tuesdays Are Family Days

My dad goes bowling on Tuesdays, so he drops my mom off here on his way.  He'll hang out for a while then leaves.

Yesterday, they had Kamryn with them because she spent the night at their house.  

 Every one on an electronic device - 

When Dad left, Mom and I moved outside to enjoy the beautiful weather.  Kamryn and Kyle were skating off and on, and I was enjoying the beauty of my Iris's in bloom and roses in bud!

 Something has been nibbling on the leaves but there are dozens of rose buds on this bush.  It will be gorgeous in no time!

Kamryn was pouting in this photo!

She's grown so much this past year, developmentally.  You can tell she is getting to be a big girl.

Yesterday was also my firstborn's birthday!  Nate is now 27!  That is crazy!  I'm certain I am only 25!  He and Kayleigh came by to pick up Kamryn, after they had gone out for lunch to celebrate.  I should have taken a photo of them.

Earlier in the day, Kyle sent birthday greetings to Nate.

After Nate, Kay and Kamryn headed home, I headed for the kitchen to start making dinner.  I made Salisbury steak, green beans and brown rice. Tim arrived home just as dinner was ready! Mom and Dad stayed for dinner, and after dinner Kyle washed the van and I went out and together we washed my parents car and the civic.  Tim and the kids showed my parents how they used a plastic riser to roll down the hill (there was video of this that happened on Sunday). later Joseph and Lindsay came over to watch a movie, and gave it a try, too!  Mom and Dad decided to not stay as it was nearly 9:00 pm. There was a lot of laughter happening here yesterday.  It is a rotating door around here sometimes, but we wouldn't have it any other way.

To see my kids enjoy each other and to see the love they have for my parents and for us, is a gift I never take for granted.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Tea On Tuesday - Waterlogue App

I've shared before about the Waterlogue app, it allows you to "water color" your photos and they look great!

Here are a few of my favorite tea related photos that I have used my app with.

Wouldn't they make lovely note cards?

Monday, May 23, 2016


We are blessed to have really good friends.  The kind that stick with you through thick and thin, in joy and sorrow, who love your kids, and grandkids, and your parents, too!

Today, for the first time in a long time we had two of these families here after church.  Nate and Kay came by this afternoon , too, and so did Vinnie and Emma. 

Three rotisserie chickens, a large green salad, some fruit, chips and salsa and some fries made up lunch.  My friends, Jen, Bonnie and I slipped away for some tea and chai lattes at a local tea shop.  

While we were away this is what the kids and dads did.

When we ladies got back they were all inside because it had started to rain again.  We got out some ice cream and graham crackers for ice cream sandwiches, and settled in for some talking with our guys.  We got talking about personality tests (a good one is at  and one couple took the test as they hadn't done it in years.

We spent time talking about differences and how God brings us together as couples and that usually we are different to balance us out.  I believe that marriage is platform for sanctification, and not only about romance.  I know that I am a better person because of Tim.

We spoke of God wanting us to accept each other as someone uniquely made by God.  That we must not only be in marriage looking for what we can get out of it, but what we can give and bring to our spouses.

Later, Tim's traditional pancakes were made from scratch, and we enjoyed our New York friends homemade maple syrup!  Its so good.  

Everyone left around 9:00 pm, I gave Tim a haircut and now everyone here is ready for bed at 20 minutes to 11:00pm.

 The kitchen is clean, 

The living room is too, even though there were 22 people here today.

The lights are low and I am alone in the living room.  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend, full of good things and friendship.  I know that I did.  I'm grateful for God's grace, and for how He works to draw people together in fellowship as believers together.  We are grateful for the love and acceptance these friends give to us.

Joining Bernideen @BTTCG and Sandi for No Place Like Home

Friday, May 20, 2016

Almost Time

The Peonies are so close to being in bloom.

These are all photos from other years - I can hardly wait!

A Nightly Ritual

I may have mentioned a new nightly ritual that takes place at our house, every night.

Kyle tucks us into bed.  Often we are all headed to bed at the same time, but even when he is already in bed, he waits until we are then he comes in to 'tuck' us in.

Last night started with the usual belly flop onto the bed and Tim giving Kyle his wild bucking bronco ride.  Then they started pestering me!

I started to take pictures...

We were laughing so hard that Sarah heard and couldn't resist coming to join in..

That's when I wisely got out of the bed

The object became to get Tim out of the bed also...


I always ask why this has to happen at BEDTIME but it's become a ritual between them, and I wouldn't change it for anything!

Information Friday, On Saturday

  Well, I was all set to do a post yesterday, but I had trouble uploading my photos. I really thought I'd get it done in the evening, bu...