Hospitality, Friendship, Encouragement

Monday, September 30, 2019

Highlights Of September

September was a wonderful month for us.  Rachel's friend, and now our friend, Luisa stayed with us for a week, and during that same time our longtime friends, Rick and Jane, arrived.  

We introduced Luisa to afternoon tea, which she loved.

We went to Havre de Grace and enjoyed the beauty of the Chesapeake Bay.

The skies have been amazing too!

We went to the 6th Annual Covenanters Scottish Festival.

My limelight hydrangea have been amazing!

We were able to attend Jesus at Sight and Sound Theatres.


I added this awesome basket for throw blankets in the living room, and put out my autumn pillows.

And some ceramic pumpkins

Lindsay hosted her Hobbit Party under the Party Tree...

And later in the week, I enjoyed tea and reading under the tree, too!

We've had some awesome sunsets...

We went to see Servant Stage's production of The Music Man.
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I've held my youngest granddaughter

And Tim, Kyle, Wes, and Rachel have worked on firewood.

My favorite month starts tomorrow.  The month of my birthday, and the birthdays of loved ones, the month that our trees change from beauty to glory.

I'm going to drink tea today, and revel in the coolness of this last day of September.  What are you going to do today?

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Sunrise, Sunset

Both caught from my van window this week.

 With shorter days upon us, most days it's dark when I take Sarah to work, and depending on her schedule, some evenings are dark when she gets done.

It's the perfect opportunity to see beauty.

Thank you all for your lovely comments on the blog focus post this week.  I loved getting so many comments and a few from readers who don't normally comment.  I appreciate hearing from you.

I'm so grateful for the community of ladies who read here.  Its so fun to share life, a recipe, a story with you all.

In a few hours we'll be off to our second week (of 10) of co-op.  I hope you all have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

A Little Afternoon Tea

I spent sometime outside yesterday, sipping Chocolate Chai, and reading through my Victoria magazine.

I invited Tim to bring his coffee out and he joined me in this little spot I've made under one of our maple trees.  There was a lovely breeze, and after a while we felt a chill in that breeze, and since it was time to think about dinner, we headed inside.

I'm determined this autumn to take the moments I can to enjoy the weather, the beauty of nature all around me, and to take a bit of time to feed my soul.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Blog Focus Thoughts

I have a birthday coming up next week, and with my kids nearly all grown up, I recognizing I'm in a different season of life.  I want to continue to be as active and vital as I can be, and I want to be used by the Lord to encourage women in their unique rolls in the world.

In the blogging world my focus has been my home and life, and all that encompasses.  When I could have gone with a home decor focus, or a homeschool focus, I didn't, choosing instead to show all of who I am on my blog.

As my homeschool years come to an end (4 years to go!) and I find myself an 'older woman' I find I want to reach back to those younger women behind me, and I also want to reach those women who are in my place.  Busy in their homes, and at work, grandmothers who are encouraging their kids as they raise their families.

So, I'd love to hear what place you're in in your life.  Are you a young woman?  Older?  Single? Married? Widowed?  What kind of blog do you like to read?  I guess I'm wondering what you look for in a blog that you go back to over and over.  

I want this cottage on the web to be a place of encouragement, hospitality, and friendship.  Just like it is in real life.

Let me hear from you in the comments, please!

Monday, September 23, 2019

Welcome Autumn!

Delicious Autumn!

Ah, Autumn! How I love you!  The nights are cool, the days are warm, but slowly getting cooler.  The trees have begun their yearly change to gold and scarlet and orange.  The sunlight is softer, too.

If you've been around my blog for any length of time, you know I adore autumn.  It's truly my favorite time of the year.   I thought I'd ...

Here is a list of things I love about Autumn

1. The trees changing colors.
2. The blue of the sky in Autumn, and giant white puffy clouds in it.
3. Pumpkins carved into pretty luminaries.
4. Wearing sweaters.
5. Using essential oils in the diffuser with Autumn scenst.
6. The scent of mulled cider.
7. Drinking mulled cider!
8. Pumpkin roll and pumpkin bread.
9. Colorful mums in the garden.
10. Flannel sheets!
11. Falling leaves.
12. Short days.
13. Feeling cozy in the house.
14. Lights in the windows.
15. Eating more soups and stews.
17. Fair Season
18. Hiking in the woods.
19. Taking a Fall foliage drive.
20. My birthday!

Read a message from the Queen of Autumn {here}.

Beautiful Good idea for an autumn shoot. It makes me want to grab my favorite book and let the little one run around outside

I need to get back to reading more.  I have a book I'm reading to review, too.  I wondered why I was putting off reading a regular book, and when I went to my annual eye exam, I found out that the cataract on my left eye now needs to be dealt with.  I've decided to wait until I get back from my week with Emma and family.  I had the right one done a few years ago and it was very easy.

I'm looking forward to watching these trees change color!  Aren't they lovely?  This photo is from three years ago!  How I love these trees!

For now I'll leave you with this quote - 

My birth time of year. I just wish winter didn't follow so closely behind.

Friday, September 20, 2019

Downton Abbey

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We went to see Downton Abbey last night.  It was just like a visit with an dear friend.  They explored one character's personal life a bit more and I thought a few scenes could have been left out.  Other than that, I was really delighted with the movie. Princess Mary's storyline is good, Mary and Edith are still in their truce, Lady Bagshaw and Lady Violet's storyline is good, too.  

Downstairs, Daisy is being Daisy, Anna is relaxed and confident in herself, Thomas is nervous with the King and Queen coming to Downton.  Drama insues when the staff find out that the Royal staff will take over everything in the house for the two days the Royals are staying with the Crawleys.  

It all works out satisfactorily.  There is one side conversation near the end that had me teary eyed, but I won't spoil it.

If you're a Downton Abbey fan, you'll enjoy the movie!

Thursday, September 19, 2019

What Are You Doing With The Changing Seasons Of Your Life?

We've had a temperature change this morning and this is what the sunrise looked like this morning.  We are definitely moving into autumn.

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” 
- Gandalf in The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien.

For some reason it is in the changing of the season into autumn, that I feel more a sense of changing time, of years moving on and my life changing.  Of course our lives do change, always.  The Bible says that "our lives are but a vapor."

This is why I love Gandalf's quote so much.  What will I do with the unknown time I have left?

For me, I've determined to encourage and build up my family, and to encourage women, as God gives me opportunity.

What about you?  What are you looking to do with your years?

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Home Decor: Bring In Autumn A Little Bit At A Time

I've changed my decorating style over the years.  In the past I used to use pretty fall leaf garlands above my kitchen cabinets, with lights, I'd put out a few scarecrows, and pumpkins.  Now I tend to do a more subdued look with ceramic pumpkins, real flowers, and a few pillows in the living room.

Outside I still use real pumpkins, and I'll be getting those soon.  I've learned not to do it too soon, or they'll rot before our annual Fall Fest in late October.  I also need to get some Mums, and lucky for us there are many local produce stands that sell pumpkins, mums and asters.  Such pretty colors for autumn.

How about you?  What does your autumn decor look like?


  We are finally getting some blue skies with real clouds, and sunshine! I took sometime with Kyle and Kamryn's help to set up the deck ...