Hospitality, Friendship, Encouragement

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

On The Last Day Of September


It's 55 degrees this morning.  We had a heavy rain last night, which we've needed. Everything is glistening this morning.

In my garden, the morning glories are putting on a show and some of my roses are having one last hurrah as well.

You can see that it's time for the echinacea to be cut down.  The finches have really enjoyed the seed heads, and I know plenty of seeds were dropped and I will have more plants next year.

I plan to dig the roses up and replant them.  I believe I've planted them too high.  Tim is going to help me with that.

This weekend is my birthday, and I'm hoping to do something away from the house! I love to spend several days celebrating and I'm starting tomorrow by getting together with two friends.  Cheryl and I are both driving half way to another friends' home.  I'm thankful for my years of blogging and for the real friendships it has brought into my life.  I'll be sure to take photos.

Happy Wednesday, Friends! 

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Chickens And Pumpkins Don't Mix


Two of the hens decided that they just loved this pumpkin and one other pumpkin and just had to eat them. Someone mentioned the other day, that they thought it was carved!  Ha ha.  We have talented, pumpkin carving hens.  

I moved the two pumpkins they hadn't touched (yet) to my deck.  Interestingly they haven't done anything to the pumpkins on the front steps of the house.  This is all the more interesting because many of the hens lay in the garden daily.  

This is the latest to be added to the frustrating things about having free ranging chickens.  If they weren't laying eggs, they'd be on their way somewhere else.  

In happier news, the Young Living Aria diffuser is back in stock!

My Aria diffuser got a lot of attention when we hosted the teens on Friday and from the family who was here on Sunday.  Their little boys noticed the 'smoke' coming out of the diffuser.  

I took these photos this morning.  Its really grey out, and we are going to have rain this afternoon.  

If you are interested in getting an Aria diffuser they are only available in the the starter kits currently.  They can't keep them in stock, so they are limiting them to the Premium Starter Kit.  If you have an interest in getting a PSK let me know and I can help you out!

Today I am diffusing Orange, Lemon, Cinnamon Bark, and Clove.  It smells so good in here!  It cheers me to have the house smell great, and I love knowing that I'm not bringing toxins into the house to do it!

Monday, September 28, 2020

September Has Flown

 I'm very surprised that it's nearly the end of September.  This month has gone by very fast.  

The limelight hydrangea are still beautiful, but almost everything else is done for the year.  I'll go out soon and cut things back and put the garden to bed for the winter.  There is beauty even in a resting garden.

Saturday, I had the itch to get out and poke around an antique store (I blame Cheryl and this post).  I found one thing - 

This book was published in 2000 but it is lovely.  I always say that beauty never goes out of style. This book was so inexpensive (being 20 years old now) but it will bring lots of inspiration.

I took a selfie as I headed out.

I also drove over to Hobby Lobby to buy yarn.  I like having something to work on with my hands.  I'm making a cowl, no surprise there!

Here is my drive home.  This road has spots that have seen many accidents over the years as people try to cross over two lanes going north then two lanes going south.  They've done some work on some turning lanes and merging lanes that should help the situation.

We survived our first week with Sarah away at school, and are learning to live as a family of three.  Kyle was over at friends' home the other evening and so I made BLT's for Tim and I for dinner.  I used half a pound of bacon, and it was the perfect amount for us both.  That was kind of weird. I'm used to cooking for a crowd!

Yesterday after church we had a fun young family over for lunch.  We ordered pizza and our grandgirls and their little boys played all afternoon.  It was a great time.  

Sometimes I'm shocked to find that I am the age of these friends' parents. LOL.  Do you do that?  It proves my theory that we all think we are 25-30 years old for most of our adult lives!  

I hope your weekend was full of good things and rest.  I'm realizing that the political climate in our country can bring on stress, so I'm remembering to turn the ipad off, watch Monty Don on Gardener's World, knit, text with a friend, read, and pray.  Not necessarily in that order!

Three more days until October!

Friday, September 25, 2020

Friday Five


These five are all from this week - 

1. Our first evening as a family of three.  

2. My Limelight Hydrangea were so pretty outside my bedroom window the other day.  The afternoon sunshine was making it hard to get a good photo of them.

3. Kyle and I spent about a half an hour at our local produce stand yesterday picking out pumpkins, mums, apples, and a few tomatoes.

4. Some apples were for Tim's lunches but some were bought for baking.  I surprised Tim with an English Apple Pie.  You can find the recipe {here}.

5. Fingers crossed that the chickens will leave the pumpkins alone.  These hens did last year, but previous groups of chickens pecked the poor pumpkins!

We are hosting a teen gathering here tonight.  It's outdoors and we'll have a nice campfire for roasting marshmallows, and providing warmth.  Kyle says they'll play hide and seek in the dark and ghosts in the grave yard.

I'll be enjoying some visiting time with a few moms.  It should be  great fun.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Autumn Favorites List


This is SO me, and in the spirit of this quote I thought I'd share a favorite things I like about Autumn.

1. Fall Foliage Day Trip

2. Sit outside as much as possible

3. Decorate outside with pumpkins and mums.

4. Reading under my maple trees.

5. Eating dinner under the lights in the maple trees.

6. Hosting an autumn tea.

7. Having lots of campfires.

8. Enjoying new autumn diffuser scents in my cottage.

9. Putting the garden to bed for the year.

10. Drinking our favorite local apple cider!

11. Making a beeswax candle.

12. Wearing my scarves.

13. Getting out the plaid blankets.

14. Putting flannel sheets on the beds.

15. Enjoying the days getting shorter.

16. Wearing boots.

17. Hosting our annual Fall Fest.

18. Celebrating my birthday!

19. Celebrating our other autumn family birthdays!

20. Hosting Thanksgiving Dinner at our home.

21. Knitting or Crocheting.

What are your Autumn favorites?

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Happy Autumn!

 It's officially Autumn! Hurray!

The weather here has been delightful; chilly mornings and evenings with warm days.  I'm kind of surprised. September is often a hot month in Pennsylvania.

I really need to cut back the garden, but I'm going to let the morning glories go as long as they can.  They've been so beautiful in the garden in late summer, early autumn.

I worked on transitioning my spring/summer dishes to my autumn/winter dishes.  What? You don't have different seasonal dishes? {grin} In the A/W I use my Johnson Bros Friendly Village dishes.  I bought mine new a few years ago.  They are not the collectible ones, but being inexpensive allows me to have the pattern I like, and the ability to have seasonal dishes. {grin}

I'm loving the look of this throw blanket


It is in a favorite color of mine for Autumn, and it looks plush and cozy.  It comes in many colors.

I'm looking for flannel sheets for my California King bed, and I'm getting a duvet and insert.  I just have a coverlet on our bed and with the temperature changing I want to layer my bed in coziness.  

Do you have any favorite brands?  Of course if I could find a comforter to match my old pattern from Waverly in a king size I'd buy that and be happy! I keep looking at Ebay but so far no luck.  

This floral pattern is my all time favorite.  But it fit our double bed and got worn out in the many years I used it.  Its a soft gold background with reds, greens, taupes, and some pinks in the florals.

Waverly Harbor House Norfolk Rose Sonata are the search terms.  Ebay only has pillow shams right now.  One day maybe I'll find it!

Kyle and I will go and buy pumpkins and mums maybe tomorrow.  I'm going to go big with my outdoor display this year.  By big I mean big mums, and big pumpkins.  I want them to have an impact.

Have you decorated yet?

Friday we host the teens from our co-op for a campfire, s'mores and games.  I'm happy to host these great young people, and to be able to share hospitality again!

I'm rambling now and need to get a move on!

Happy Tuesday friends! The best season of the year is here!

Monday, September 21, 2020

Our Extended Weekend

 Our trip to spend a few days visiting our daughter and her family was great.  The kids are fun, they loved playing with Uncle Kyle, which meant a lot of wrestling.

The kids adore their baby brother

and as even came on they loved gathering around grandpa and watching videos of machines doing work.  

Emma is such a great mom.  The kids love to snuggle up with her in the mornings.

While we were there she made Sarah a few oil rollers - one for skin and one for peace and relaxation.  

One day we went and got special donuts, and then we went to an awesome antique mall.  We found a sweet ring for Sarah, and some little toys for the kids.  I could have taken this chandelier home!  

Sarah and Kyle were feeling the soon to be separation.  They are my twins separated by three years.

We took Sarah to school on Saturday and got to know her roommate and her roommate's parents at the welcome banquet.  Afterward we took Sarah and her roommate for coffee, and some chatting.  They are going to get along very well.  We'd been praying about that.

Classes are underway this morning, and I've had a text asking me to mail her two cardigans that she has forgotten.  I'm happy to do that.

The house feels normal right now because she'd be at work if she were home, but when evening comes and her room is empty, we'll feel it.

We think there is no finer foundation for life than to study God's word.  She has the privilege to do this for two years.  She feels strongly that this is an amazing time to be alive.

Continuing to pray for peace for our nation, and for wisdom.  I have always prayed, since learning that one of my spiritual gifts is discernment, that God would make me like the 'sons of Issachar' who could discern the times in which they lived. (1 Chronicles 12:32)  Wisdom and discernment is surely needed in these unprecedented days.  

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

My New Aria Diffuser

 My Young Living Aria diffuser arrived last week and I've been enjoying it every day.

It can change colors, and if you want it can play spa type music.  I also can connect my phone to it and play my own music through it.

It's really pretty diffusing.  I've mostly been diffusing Citrus Fresh and Peppermint. 

I have it in the kitchen right now but am going to move it into the living room space.

I have had a lot of diffusers over the years, and I'm sure I'll use many more in the future, but this one is special.  It's currently sold out.  If you are interested in getting one contact me and I'll help you order through me, when they are back in stock.

We leave tomorrow for Emma's and then on Saturday we will be dropping Sarah off at school in SC. Prayers are appreciated for all of us, but today I'm thinking of Kyle.  He and Sarah are pretty close.  They look the most alike, and have a lot of common interests.  He will be the last kid at home, and I think he'll miss her a lot. 

Lindsay will be here hanging out with Watson, and doing animal care for our neighbor, too.

I won't be able to post for the rest of the week, but if you follow me on Instagram you'll see some photos of our time away.

Be strong and courageous my friends.  God is in control!

Monday, September 14, 2020

Fear Not


There is so much going on in our nation and frankly, it's scary.

However, when I see things that are frightening, I look to my savior and my courage begins to rise.  

I've never before seen where people who live in the areas where there are fires (CA, OR, WA) and they are saying on their social media that people are setting these fires on purpose, and yet 'official' media and even in one case an FBI section saying that that isn't true.

Friends, it has come down to becoming aware that the mainstream media is lying to us.  They are now just a mouth piece for a particular political viewpoint, and even when it is shown over and over that they didn't tell the truth, they still do it hoping that at least some will believe them.

Tim and I watched an Clackamas county supervisors meeting online last night.  They are available for people to watch.  The local sheriff's department was briefing them on what was going on.  The media is lying to us.

I think big things are going to happen in the next weeks leading up to the election, and I just want to encourage you that when you hear something from the mainstream media, to take a deep breath, and do a bit of online research from some non mainstream media, locals in an area etc. Don't automatically trust that what the media is reporting is truth.

Also, if I am looking up anything about vaccines, the fires, election information I use a different search engine than g**gle.  They are blocking searches of some information.  Just like FB etc, who are fact checking you.  Tim and I looked up one fact checker site that is commonly used, and found it is funded by the Tides Foundation.  Look and see who is behind that foundation.  I use Duck Duck Go right now for searches.

I told Tim this weekend that the Lord reminded me that my hope is not in a political party or in any person.  My hope is only in the Lord!

'Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

Isaiah 41:10

We are in a spiritual battle, friends.  Darkness vs Light.  It seems as if darkness has had the upper hand, but I sense that Light is on the move.

Keep trusting, keep looking to the source of LIGHT.  We are not alone, God is with us.

Friday, September 11, 2020

I'll Never Forget

 This day 19 years ago was a horrifying day in our nations' history.  2,977 people lost their lives that day.  

September 11 Attacks: Facts, Background & Impact - HISTORY


A 9/11 Reflection: The Pentagon in Photos > U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE >  Story


Shanksville Chief Reflects on 9/11 Plane Crash | Firehouse



My older kids were 12, 9, 7, and 2 years old. The oldest two at least remember because we had the morning news on when it happened.  We were getting ready to start our homeschool day.  Sarah and Kyle were not born yet, and have lived in a post 9/11 world.

I wish for the unity of the days that followed, with neighbors caring about neighbors and everyone feeling  united.  In the years since then, there has been a concerted effort to divide Americans, until some citizen keep silent out of fear.  This is not right.

I hope you are safe.  I've been reading about the police arresting people who are purposely starting fires all over Oregon and California.  Let's be lights, friends. Let's care for our neighbors, help those in need.  

We need God's mercy and grace as a nation.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

After Using Essential Oils For Years, I Finally Did Something



I bought a premium starter kit with Young Living.  My daughter Emma has been using Young Living for a while now and I've ordered some products through her, such as the laundry detergent, Thieves cleaner, and a few oils.

I like the products, and knowing that they are toxin free.  I hesitated for a while before joining because many of the products are priced above what we would have budgeted to spend on certain items.

However, most of the cleaning products are highly concentrated, so you use the bottle to make many bottles of laundry detergent or cleaner.  I've been using the Thieves cleaner for several months now, and keep a spray bottle on my counter.  I have yet, to make a new bottle, and I use it to clean everything from my counters to appliances to windows.  It cuts the grease on my stove, and cleans windows without streaks.  I've recently placed a spray bottle in both of the bathrooms for quick and easy cleaning.  I also use a few capfuls in hot water and clean my pine floors.

Tim has been interested in supplements since reading in our Samaritan Ministries newsletter that there are now some vitamins and minerals that you need for your health but they can no longer be  obtained by the foods we eat.  And as we are both in our 50's we are wanting to eat and live in a healthful way more than ever.

We've ordering the Master Formula which is a packet with four supplements.



• Naturally supports general health and well-being for the body

 • Gut flora supporting prebiotics

 • Ingredients help neutralize free radicals in the body 

• Includes antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and other food-based nutriment 

• SSI Technology delivers ingredients in 3 forms chosen for their complementary properties


• Liquid Vitamin Capsule: pairs Cardamom, Clove, Fennel, and Ginger essential oil with fat-soluble vitamins 

• Micronized Nutrient Capsule: contains a blend of certified organic food extracts that provide vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B9 • Phyto-Caplet: contains Spectra™*—a powerful fruit, vegetable, and herb extract blend

Tim has always been a huge skeptic when it comes to supplements, oils, and other natural remedies.  That is until he saw that many of them work.  Then he began to read and learn and I took a medicinal herbs class many years ago now.  It changed how I view 'weeds' and all the plants in nature.  So many have health benefits for us.

I grew up with the mind set that every plant that wasn't purchased and planted in the garden were weeds and bad.  They were to be sprayed with weed killer (roundup).  Since then I've learned that while I don't want certain plants in my garden, most have nutritional benefits, or have healing properties in them. You can read about the use of plantain {here}.

I'm not going to turn my blog into a huge selling blog, but I will continue to do what I've always done on my blog: share my life and what I've been learning, and products that work for me.

I also am excited to get this diffuser - 



If you ever have questions about anything I share please feel free to ask! If I don't know the answer, I'll find out for you.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Gifts From The Garden

 I have one Limelight Hydrangea bush.  One.

I bought it about three years ago for $12 at an Amish nursery. The only thing I do with it is cut flowers off of it in the summer and autumn. It's flowers are amazing.  Some are very big, others are smaller, but they are all beautiful.

We cut some the other day, and I put them in a large jar and stuck them on top of my great grandmothers china hutch, and a few on the back of the kitchen sink.

This bush is the gift that keeps on giving, and I'm grateful for each one.

Monday, September 7, 2020

Lovely Weekend, And Now A Prep Week

 Our weekend was lovely and full of home keeping things for me.  The guys mowed here and at our friends' home, then burned all the trash, and some wood.  We watched the grand girlies while their parents had a anniversary dinner at home.  They ordered food from a favorite restaurant then ate at home while watching a movie.  They've been married five years now!

Our church is still meeting outside when the weather permits, and inside when the weather is rainy.  There is room for those who wear a mask, and a place for people to sit who want to be socially distant both indoors and out.  Our church is still recording the services and those who need to stay home, are able to watch the recording of the service.

The weather was lovely over the weekend, and we had doors and windows open.  The flowers on the deck, and a few planted around the deck are happily in bloom still.

We had the opportunity to watch an encore presentation of Sight and Sounds' latest show Queen Esther.  Our church paid to show it!  It is an awesome show, great music, amazing costumes, and sets.  The message of Esther is an appropriate one for the times we are living in.

We are never alone, and God has placed us in the unique places we are in, for such a time as this.  Don't fear, speak truth, God is with you.

Here is a link for you to watch it in your own home! {Esther} 

Now to the prep week part.  Sarah has worked her last day (for now) at Chick-fil-A.  This week is last minute shopping, seeing friends and family, and packing.  We head out next week to see Emma and family for a few days before we go to SC to drop Sarah off at school.  There is excitement and nerves happening right now, so if you think of her send up a prayer for peace.  She's ready and its going to be a good two years.

As it happens, the time we are gone to take Sarah to school, Lindsay will be doing animal care for our neighbors and she will be Watson-sitting for us! Handy timing!  She will stay here at our home, and walk over to care for their many chickens, ducks, horses, and cat.

I hope your weekend was lovely, too.  I believe we must be intentional in our relationships with family, friends, and neighbors.  Let's really care about each other.  With so much turmoil in the world, let's help one another.  There are many who've self isolated and may still need to if they have underlying conditions.  Give them a call or chat with them through texting.  Something to show you are thinking of them, and that they are not alone.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Friday Five


Welcome Friends!

Yesterday Sarah, Kyle, and I had some errands to run, and groceries to buy. As we were driving we were noticing all of the trees that change color early were really changing.  With the kind of crazy year its been, I'm welcoming this signs in nature of the seasonal change.

This made me think about some of the cozy items that I have recently added to my home, and some that I have year round but that work well for Autumn.

Here are my five - 

1. When I went to HomeGoods last week I purchased this small rug for the kitchen.  It's in front of the sink and the stove is to the right of the rug.  I spend a lot of time in those two spots and this rug is very welcoming in this space!

2. I bought these pillows from Amazon.  I shared them on a post last week. I really like them and they work beautifully in my home. You can find them{here}. They come in 15 color options.  Love them!

3. I'm working on an Autumn chalkboard sign.  I've seen some on Pinterest and knew I had a chalkboard in my decor storage. I bought some chalk pens and voila'!  I say that I am working on it because I erased what I'd written is too crowded at the end!  I'll get it right (hopefully) and I'll show you next week!

4. I've had this plate FOREVER!  I've had it hanging over the plate rack, next to the big shelf over my stairwell.  The colors are perfect in my home and for Autumn.

5. These curtains used to hang in my bedroom, when Tim and I used the bedroom Sarah has now.  When we moved back to the master, I couldn't use these as there are only two panels and I need three for the master.  A year or so ago, when I changed the black and white buffalo check curtains out for the gold velvet, I remembered that I had these curtains and used them on the sliding french doors.

They really are perfect in my home.

I'm also going to leave you with a bonus video.  We've been getting this thunderstorms several times a week for the last few weeks.  I love them especially when everyone is cozy at home.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Keep praying for our nation. 

Disclosure: If you buy through my Amazon link, I get a bit of credit.

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...