Friday, October 13, 2017

Five Minute Friday - INVITE

Five Minute Friday

Welcome to this week's Five Minute Friday!  Since I am not participating in this year's Write 31 Days challenge, I have decided to at least try to write for the FMF word each week; and already that hasn't happened!!

Oh, well...

This week's Five Minute Friday word is:


So, I invite you to grab a cup of coffee (or tea; perhaps even a cold glass of soda or lemonade)...

This is the kind of house I want...big front porch, rocking chairs, and lots of trees :)And join me on the front porch!

Oh, my!  What a vision that is!!  To have all my bloggy friends and my crafty friends join me on the front porch?!

Or, at least the balcony off the living room; since I really don't have a front porch...that sure would be nice to have though!!

But, I fear there would not be enough room to hold all of you!


There are many of you that I would want to invite to this party!

We will celebrate the connections we have all made while sharing our writing, or even our crafting.  I have just as many crafty friends as I do bloggy friends!

We will laugh and share more of our stories; even show off more of our hand-made crafts...

Perhaps we will enjoy a meal together, or a plate of cookies or a beautiful cake or pie.

But, the real crazy dream part for me would be to actually see each one of you; to meet the friends I have connection with in so many ways!

To wrap my arms around you in a great big bear hug!  To welcome you into my home (that would be something in itself; my apartment is quite small!!).

To let you cry on my shoulder, if that is what you need.

To listen as you bring me up to date on that last "something" that happened.

To hold your hand while you find the right words to share...

I can see it now!!

What a day!  What an event that would be!!

Well, I am sorry to say...

I really cannot invite all of you into my home; or even onto my balcony or front porch.

But, I sure would love to do that!!

There are so many of you that have encouraged me over the past few years.  Whether in my writing or crafting...

You inspire me with words from your very souls!  You awe me with your amazing beautiful!

And, that visit would be a way for me to say, "Thank you so much for all of it!"

But, since I cannot actually invite you into my home...

I invite you to check out my blog!  I invite you to follow me on Facebook where I share links to my blog as I publish new posts.

I invite you to check out the crafts I share on Facebook and within some of the posts I write (especially for the Simple Woman's Daybook posts each week.)

And, yes, this has gone way past five minutes!

Just know...the invitation stands!  If you are anywhere nearby...

I would love to meet up!

For more information on Five Minute Friday, check out the five minute friday community on Facebook.  And, after writing your own post, share it on the weekly five minute friday link-up.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Messages of Hope

At church on Sunday, I was drawn to a small table where books are usually placed for swapping.  My eyes went immediately to this book by Barbara Johnson; my first thought being, "Mom had a book like this."

Opening the cover to the inside page, I found a stamped name and address...

My mother's!  This had been her book at one time, and she (or I, after she passed) had donated it to the church.

Of course, I picked the book up...

The information on the back of the book, "Splashes of Joy in the Cesspools of Life" summarizes it this way:

" 'Almost everyone needs a splash of joy to get through the mess, to get cleaned off and get sweetened up - refreshed and ready to go again,' Barbara Johnson says...Splashes of Joy offers an invigorating spurt of encouragement and a gentle reminder to splatter joy into the lives of others as well."

I discovered months ago that I needed to find my joy before I could write about hope, which is my word for 2017...the word I haven't written about very much!

This book helps us, in a comical way, to find Joy even when life hands us the uglies; those occasions when we can hardly find our way.

I remembered the chat I had with a dear friend the night before; as usual, she was encouraging me and helping me unravel some thoughts and issues I was having with my husband.

I told my friend I thought some of the words in my blog post for Simple Woman's Daybook were "accidentally" used; like typing "I Am Leaning" instead of "I am Learning."  I worked that "accident" into the words of my post; check it out here.

My friend told me she didn't think it was an accident...

Anymore than she didn't think it was an accident that I had found that book!

She said, "There is more meant to be understood there I think.  The answer is in that book somewhere."

Yesterday I was encouraged by this message found on Facebook:

"Hope says that God is sending you encouraging messages through others."  (- Karen Sebastian-Wirth, #thehopelady.)

Well, yes!  God does send encouragement and hope through others!

But, why did that message mean so this particular time?

I thought back to the words of my friend; to the book I had "found"; and to my "accident" in the words I wrote in my blog.

I thought about that part of the quote, "messages through others"...

And realized that God is sending me messages through others!

Messages like quotes and chats and blog posts and words in TV shows.  He is even sending me messages through my own words!

God is reminding me that I can lean on Him; I can learn to lean...

And He will continue to send those "messages through others" to encourage me as I, in turn, encourage others.

Yes!  I am learning!  But, I am also leaning...

I am Learning to lean on Him!

A special thanks to Karen Sebastian-Wirth for the words of encouragement and inspiration found in this series.

Karen is participating in the "Write31Days" challenge during the month of October.  Check out her blog here.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Simple Woman's Daybook - October 9, 2017

October 9, 2017

Looking Out My Window:
It's Tuesday afternoon!  The day just seemed to pass in a flurry of...chores!!

But, here I am trying to get some computer work done...

It's in the mid 80's right now, with a high predicted of 88 degrees!  I am sooooo ready for some really cooler weather; not just a few teaser days!

I Am Thinking:
About the fires in California...

About the hurricane damage in Puerto Rico and Houston and south Florida and my home town, too...

About the tornadoes wherever...

About the earthquake wherever...

About the shootings in Las Vegas and too many other places...

About the way things are in this world.

Our only HOPE is God...

Please be with us, Dear God.  We need YOU!  You are our only hope!!

I Am Thankful:
For my family...

For my friends...

For my Church...

For my cat {really!  She is comfort when I need the cuddles!}

For a place to live; a roof over our heads...

For enough income to take care of our needs...

For hobbies and things that keep my mind active...

For a fairly good health of mine and my husbands...

For a God who strengthens us when we are needing the strength when life gives us the hard things.

Thank you, God!

One of My Favorite Things:
Connecting with others around the US and other countries through our crafting and blogging...

Some have become very close friends; and we keep in touch almost daily!

I Am Creating:
I have been doing more crafting at home lately; but spent some time at Our Crafting Place last Saturday.

I finished a couple of memory dex cards; but not the ones I intended to work on...

No automatic alt text available.When I gathered my bags to take up to OCP, I didn't take the one with the cards I needed to finish for the monthly swaps.

But, at least I had some things to work on!  And, I did finish the others on Sunday afternoon.

I Am Wearing:
A pair of gray shorts and a purple "cleaning" gear; and a pair of green and red socks!  I don't like walking around barefoot and have started wearing these thick, colorful socks...

I Am Reading:
Just finished reading (this morning) the third book of the Georgia Trilogy by Eugenia Price,"Beauty from Ashes".

Not sure what I will read next; waiting for that book I mentioned last week - "Gracelaced" - that I won from Peggy, the original "Simple Woman"!

Also, I have another book by Barbara Johnson I picked up at church yesterday:

My first thought when I saw the book was, "Mom had a book like that..."

When I opened the book to the front, there was a stamp with mom's name and address!  It was her book that had been donated to the church...either by mom or me after she passed.

I took it as a sign that I needed to read something comical and fun.  With all that's been going on around us, I'd have to agree with that sign!

I Am Hoping:

All the devastation we have been experiencing lately...

I am hoping it slows down a bit so we can catch up with our - hope and faith!

Perhaps taking a little bit of a breath once in a while will help us to find our hope and faith again?!

Because, we do know in whose hands our lives are held; and that is where we find our hope and faith!

I Am Learning:
To be calm when the situation calls for me to be calm, rather than being defensive or stressed out.

To take another breath - or two - before I speak or reply to whatever has been said.

I am learning...

That I will always be learning because this disease doesn't come with a how-to manual!

So, I am leaning learning...

{I accidentally typed "leaning" by mistake; perhaps I do need to learn to lean!!  So, I kept that word in the test!}

In My Kitchen: 
Today being "chore day", the kitchen is clean; dishwasher cleaned out and re-loaded, floor swept and mopped, and dinner is thawing out.

Later I will make bbq pork chops and something to go with it, and Texas toast...a fave of my hubby's.

{Yes, I cooked bbq pork chops, mixed veggies, smoky scalloped potatoes and Texas toast.  A very good dinner if I say so...

And, since I am the only one to eat it, I do say so!!

Because he had eaten too much in the afternoon, and too close to dinner, my husband wasn't hungry!  Well, I was!!

And, I held my tongue and just continued to eat til I was full!}

Shared Quote:
Today I am sharing a You Tube video of a song I recently heard on a Christian radio station, "Til the Blue" sang by Steven Curtis Chapman.

This song was written after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey in Houston.  It was performed and recorded live at the East Arkansas Fine Arts Center in Forrest city, AR.

These words touched my heart the first time I heard them; and with so much happening in our country and abroad, I pray they touch yours as well...

A Moment From My Day:
An outing with my husband can go from Zero to Sixty in no time!

Actually, it can go from a #0 in stress level to a #5,469...

That's just an exaggerated made-up number to share how a seemingly great day can change into a not-so-great day, without any warning!

And that is just what happened today...

Then, it changes back again to a normal, good day.

That's my day(s); almost every day!

I am learning to deal with it and just go with the flow...


So ends this week's post for the Simple Woman's Daybook.

I pray you find hope and faith and some sort of inspiration through the words of this "simple woman".

Thank you for sharing your time me!


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Simple Woman's Daybook - October 2, 2017

October 2, 2017

Looking Out My Window:
The day was breezy and really nice; mid 80's!  Love it!!  Kept the back (balcony) door open most of the day.  Just turned the a/c back on a short time ago because it had gotten too hot inside.

Very pleasant day; can't wait til all of the days are like that!

I Am Thinking:
Trying not to think about the shootings in Las Vegas; but it's hard not to with the TV talking non-stop about it!

What I am thinking about is:  I know God promised He wouldn't drown us all; He left the rainbow to show His promise not to send the floods again.  That could be questioned, with all the hurricanes and rains; but he did promise!

But, with all the shootings and killings and terrorism and whatever...does He mean for us to just kill each other til there are no more people around?

No!  I don't really believe that!!  But, the media would have us believe that it's all bad!  That all news is bad news.

There is good all around.  And when things like the Las Vegas shootings; Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Marie, and many from earlier years; earthquakes and tornadoes and whatever...the good comes out in those who are there to help.

People helping each other!  That is what God wishes for the world; to help each other...regardless of color or age or gender preferences; regardless of any thing!

Just helping each other!

I Am Thankful:
That I am home safely after driving in a major thunderstorm Sunday from an outing about an hour away.  It was quite stressful, but I made it!

The rain let up a little as I crossed the county line.  Then I was better able to drive the rest of the way home...

...until I was crossing the bridge about 10 minutes from home.

I was driving in the far right lane and had to move to the next lane because the car in front of me was driving slower, and had his flashers on.

The truck coming up behind me moved over to the far right lane because I was driving slower than he was; he quickly realized the car was driving even slower, somehow moved into the emergency lane, passing the car and again moving into the next lane to keep from hitting the car and probably me, too!  

It all happened so quickly; and I still think the guy in the car had no clue he was almost hit!!  And, he was on his cell phone!!  That wasn't the reason the accident almost happened; but it was probably the reason he was going slower and had his flashers on!

Thank you, God!  Whatever it is you have for me to do, please let me know!  You have saved me so many times!!  I need to know what you want me to do!!

One of My Favorite Things:
Making plans to do something fun, and doing it!!

Like, attending an all day Girls Day Out...crafting, eating, shopping, sharing ideas and our lives!  That is so much FUN!

Or, like driving an hour away to check out a scrapbook store, and to meet an online friend!  {Forget the fact that it rained all the way there; all day; and all the way home...except for those really short spurts of just sprinkles!!}

I Am Creating:
Finished a Halloween pocket letter and tag; one for a swap and one for a giveaway.  Each of these shows the front and back of the pocket letter (top photo) and the tag (bottom photo).

I Am Wearing:
Today was a busy, but relaxing day.  I did change out of my pj's so I could wash them!

Earlier I was wearing a pair of black stretch pants - the weather was calling for pants instead of shorts - and a black and gray shirt.

Now, I am wearing a pair of gray pajama pants and a black and gray night shirt.

Hmmm...there seems to be a trend in the colors for today!!

I Am Reading:
Still reading the third book of the Georgia Trilogy by Eugenia Price,"Beauty from Ashes".  A little more than half way through it...

I Am Hoping:

With everything else I have shared this week, I just can't seem to think of anything I am "hoping" for!!!

Perhaps I could just hope I receive some inspiration from reading a few of the blog posts I am following during the Write 31 Days challenge...

I Am Learning:
It isn't easy living with someone that has a hard time hearing; and automatically assumes what I have to say to him is a negative comment or answer to whatever he has said or asked.

What have I actually learned?  To try to stop before answering him and think before I speak!  Sometimes that backfires and he thinks I am ignoring him; but the truth is, I am trying to form my words so they are clear and tendency is to say too much!!

In this case, less is more, and so much better!

In My Kitchen: 
Tonight it will be leftovers; though I am not sure what I will eat!  My husband has a dish of his leftovers from last night he will eat.  Maybe a pot pie?  Who knows!!

The dishwasher is ready to be unloaded, and loaded again.

I have been resting today, and a little bit of crafting.  Tired and not feeling 100%; so it will get done eventually.  I did say this was my lite week!

Shared Quote:
I have been following the writings and quotes of Caitlyn on her blog, stuckinindiana, for a couple of years now.  She never fails to share one that hits right at home, or is something I need to hear!

The following was posted on her Facebook page on Tuesday:

A Moment From My Day:
Checking my email yesterday, I had an email from Peggy, our creative hostess.  It seems I have won the book, "Gracelaced" by Ruth Chou Simons!  I am excited to receive this book and look forward to reading it!


The end of another month; September has flown by in a flurry of busy-ness.  And there are only three months left in 2017.  If they go by as fast as this year has, the new year will be here in a flash!

Originally I had planned to participate in the Write 31 Days challenge during the month of October.  I did so the past three years; but there is just too much going on.  I was feeling overwhelmed trying to get things together, and the words were not coming...

So, I have decided not to participate for this year!  I will try to continue following Five Minute Friday as well as the Simple Woman's Daybook.  Perhaps focusing on these two posts each week will give me the boost needed, and the inspiration, to continue writing.

For now, this week's SWD is done!  Thanks for sharing your time with this "simple woman"!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Simple Woman's Daybook - September 25, 2017

September 25, 2017

Looking Out My Window:
Today was an "indoors" kind of day...

Not because of the weather!  It's beautiful outside.  The sun is shining; it isn't too hot - maybe the mid 80's?!  I haven't even checked.

But, just had a relaxing, semi-busy inside kind of day!!

I Am Thinking:
Trying to decide - last minute sort of decision! - whether or not to participate in the Write 31 Days challenge...

I think I was thinking about it last week, too!

I Am Thankful:
I am thankful for my Family; my Church Family; my friends...

I am thankful for the life I have; the things I do whether planned or at the last minute.

It's flexible!  Just the way I love it!

One of My Favorite Things:
Guess that goes with the "thankful" part, too!  A favorite thing is spending time with my grandchildren.

Sometimes it's all of them at once; but the one-on-one times I get to spend with them individually is priceless!

I Am Creating:
During the last weekend I spent at a retreat, I was able to get a lot of projects finished.  The ones that still needed a few finishing touches have also been completed.

Now, I am putting things together for two days of scrapbooking next weekend:  first, on Saturday at a local church with friends who have set up a Girls' Day Out.  Then, on Sunday about an hour away at a store where I will be meeting an online friend for the first time.

At these two events, I will be working on some Halloween things; as well as a couple of other projects I've been wanting to complete.

I Am Wearing:
A pair of jeans - it's so good to be back in my jeans!  I am so much more comfortable in them than the shorts or capris I wear during the summer!  Also, a green-ish shirt and a pair of candy cane red and white socks with green on the toes!

It's all about the comfort!!

I Am Reading:
Still reading the third book of the Georgia Trilogy by Eugenia Price,"Beauty from Ashes".

While I do love her books, and am loving this series, I think I will take a break from this author for the next couple of books I read.

These books take place in the mid-1800's, and I think I need to move forward a few years!  But, I am not abandoning the other series I want to read or re-read!

I Am Hoping:

Hope?!  What am I hoping?!  I hope to spend more time with my daughters and their families, and my son as we move closer to the holidays...

Including those we have in October!  Just not sure how I want to handle the Halloween visiting this year.  Last year it was a really crazy traffic jam trying to get from one side of town to the other in order to see all of the grandkids in their costumes!

I Am Learning:
To take what comes with as little stress and worry as I can!

Recently, we received a letter that our doctor was closing his practice.  I actually took this as an opportunity to change doctors.

Though my husband really "loves" this doctor, I do not!  And, I am the one that has to speak to him about issues that may come up.

So, I have decided to just not stress over it; and make the change to another doctor...

In My Kitchen: 
The dishes in the dishwasher are dirty; I ran an almost full load this morning after breakfast and have put about 4 items into it to run when it is full again!

Dinner?  Leftovers from Sunday's outing with my grandson...Chinese!  Lo Mein, Orange Chicken, and Teriyaki Grilled Chicken...

I am getting hungry just typing those words!

Shared Quote:

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A Moment From My Day:
Unexpected moments with my grandchildren are precious to me!

After church on Sunday I drove over to see my six-year old grandson, who has just become a Cub Scout.  They were in front of a grocery store selling their yummy popcorn!

After making my purchase and visiting a few minutes with my daughter and son-in-law, I left with my 17-year old grandson to eat Chinese...that's where my leftovers came from!

Enjoyed both!!

Tomorrow, my husband and I will meet our daughter and granddaughter at a park where we will spend a little time with them.


Well, this is the last SWD for September.  Next week we will be into another month.  Hard to believe how fast this year is flying by us!

Not sure how it will work out for the next month!  I will be participating in the monthly challenge, Write 31 Days, where I will write every day during the month of October.

Hope you will check that series out, as well as my regular weekly participation with the Simple Woman's Daybook!