Oh, those early morning wakeup calls meows! No alarm clock could be more accurate. There are mornings when I would love to sleep just a little longer, but Wilbur doesn’t have a snooze button! The very latest he will let me sleep is 6:20am. And that is with me listening to his insistent and ever louder yowls! Still, I am so very grateful for Wilbur and Templeton and their companionship. I like to start my day recognizing three things I am grateful for. Today’s list at the moment:
a bowl of hot oatmeal
no aches or pains
a cute mug decorated as a snail
Starting my day giving thanks to God for the little things makes me happy! Lifting my cup of tea and asking “In this moment, what three things are you grateful for?” Wishing you a happy day! Kindness matters.
Another week has passed. I remember when I was young, my mother would say how quickly time passes as one grows older. I couldn’t imagine it. Each day seemed so long and so full of life! Would I ever grow up? Would I ever be a teenager? Now, here I sit writing this weekly reflection and looking back at my life. That little girl in my past is now only two and a half years from reaching the age of 80.
Now I see the plentitude of ancestors God has given me as a huge blessing: 8 children, 19 grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren, and 1 great great grandchild. That little girl never dreamed I’d one day be the matriarch of such a family. She dreamed of being on stage singing and dancing, a writer of songs, an author, a teacher…someone who would be recognized and loved. Growing up as an only child, when you know you have a brother and sister you don’t see very often can be extremely lonely. A little girl who never knew her father, who gave all for his country before she was a year old.
That little girl would walk to church every Sunday and learn about Jesus. The little community she lived in was considered a “hollow.” City water was a long time coming to the hollow. She grew up pumping water, going to an outdoor toilet in the wee hours, running through the woods searching for arrowheads and living in a pretend world. She spent hours walking along the creek, being alone with her imaginary horse named Spooky. She would make blanket tents, crawl inside and while away the hours reading, escaping into other worlds. Her imagination grew on those long, somewhat lonely days.
In these “golden years,” my imagination can take me places I don’t want to go. I struggle against Satan’s lies telling me I’m still that lonely little girl without anyone to love her. At times, I give in, but then God reminds me I’m so much more. He reminds me of the blessings He has given me throughout the years. Yes, sometimes I have taken a turn off the path He led me on, but God, in His great love, has turned those wrong turns into something good.
So I pull my memories away from the distant past to now. To last week. I bought three new puzzles since I enjoyed working on the last one so much. It has more pieces than the last, but I’m making progress.
I was happy to finish three previous works in progress. This first one I started two Fridays ago. It is from the coloring book “Fairies” by Ruth Sanderson. I wanted to use my oil pencils and see how they worked on these dark grayscale images. I also used a lot of glitter and pearl paint for the background.
This next one was started a couple of weeks ago. It is in the Steampunk Special from Colouring Heaven and the artist is Hannah Lynn. I used both markers and pencils. (note: only 13 pages to go and this will be another completed book for me!)
This next picture is a mandala colored with glitter gel pens. I actually started this picture about three weeks ago while my car was being serviced. I decided to bring the 50 Nightime Mandala coloring book illustrated by Kameliya Angelkova. Not a lot to carry since I used only 5 pens.
I colored another mandala in this book with glitter pens one evening this week while I was watching/listening to a podcast on You Tube by Phil and Jase Robertson in their Unashamed series. I love listening to their Bible Studies and things they encounter in their Christian walks.
This last picture I started on Friday while skyping with my daughter and finished it on Saturday. It was done with alcohol brush markers and Prismacolor Premier pencils. The picture is titled “Nocturnals”, artist Sarah Richter, book from Colouring Heaven titled Creatures of the Night. When I chose this picture to color, I envisioned the owl as a snowy owl. The rest of the colors evolved after the owl was colored. This is my favorite one from this week.
And now, I come to the close of this week’s reflections. I’m still working on losing some of the extra pounds I’ve put on the past three years. My feet, legs, and hips will be thankful as well as my heart. I’m hoping I can also control my blood sugar better and perhaps get off the medication I take for my Type 2 Diabetes. The weight loss is slow. If only I could take it off as fast as I put it on! A new week has dawned and I’m looking forward to seeing what God has waiting in each gift of a new day. Wishing you all a happy week full of blessings and love. Until next time…
The air was a little cooler than I expected as I took out my trash this morning, but already the sun is shining. Each day is truly a gift, the contents unknown, until I wake and give thanks to God. The unwrapping is in stages and each hour reveals something new.
This is the way I like to look at each new day I’m given to enjoy life in my temporary home on earth. Moving through the day with a positive outlook of expectation provides a happiness and joy. Lifting my cup of tea this morning with a reminder that attitude affects gratitude and gratitude affects attitude! May your day be filled with calorie free smiles!
Eggs are boiling on the stove as I write this post. It is Sunday, my favorite day of the week. It sets the stage for a wonderful week when I gather with my church family to give praise to God for His blessings, His grace, His goodness. Last Sunday, the sermon was about what happens in the minute of our death. Many of us fear death, but if we have been saved, we have the assurance that we will leave our bodies and immediately be present in Jesus. This week’s sermon is about hell. Yes, hell is a real place. It is not fiction. Satan is real, too.
In my devotion today, I read how the enemy uses culture and our skewed sense of conformity to confuse us and draw us into the darkness. The lie is that we cannot offend anyone, so we have to embrace the new culture, even though it is considered sin in the Bible. The Bible is the Word of God. It is our life guide. It is so easy for Christians to become complacent and accepting because we have kind hearts and want to love everyone. It is how we are called to live. However, loving the person does not mean accepting the sin. It is so easy to get sucked into the ways of the world, degree by degree. Be watchful.
So, why did I start with my breakfast of boiled eggs? I’ve been on WW+ and working really hard on losing weight. Sundays my friend and I have lunch at a local pizza place. I know the individual veggie pizza I’ll order is a large number of my daily points. So I need to concentrate on zero point foods for my other meals. It’s a compromise. Lifting my cup of tea and reminding you that compromise is not something you do when confronted with sin. Be strong and be kind. Blessings to you and yours on this day the Lord has made.
“Now He uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-15 NLT
I start my mornings reading a devotional in a book by Dalene Reyburn titled Walking in Grace. My daughter gifted it to me this past Christmas. The scripture above is the one from yesterday. I love these two verses. I can envision a sweet aroma, pleasing to God spreading through a world that stinks of rot, and decay.
My daughter also gifted me a fragrance set from Bath and Body Works called Snowflakes & Cashmere. Oh, how I adore the scent. But I’ve become aware that wearing fragrance when one ventures in the company of others can trigger allergic reactions in others. Now I spray the fine fragrance mist all over my body on the days I’m spending at home. Problem is, I quickly become attuned to the scent and the aroma alludes me.
Many of us forget that we are still spreading knowledge of Christ even when we don’t actively speak of our faith constantly. People watch us very closely when they know we are Christians. How we handle situations and show our faith in trusting God, sharing the fruits of the Spirit speaks volumes. Lifting my cup of tea this morning and thanking God for this beautiful morning He has provided. “The cold never bothered me anyway!”
While the sun isn’t shining, the skies above are a beautiful pastel blue with pretty white clouds. It’s truly a lovely morning. I wanted to sit on the front porch to write this morning, but even my cup of tea couldn’t banish the chill in the 50 degree temperature with a breeze blowing into my face. I could have put the hoodie on my head and also changed into socks and athletic shoes, but…it is still morning! So I moved back into my office. The nice mid seventy to eighty degree weather last week spoiled me. I’m ready to start every morning sitting on my porch. It’s where I feel truly close to God as I look at the beauty He created and listen to the songs of the birds in the blossoming trees. My elderberry bush has bloomed in the last couple of days! And my spirea bushes are looking spectacular.
But let’s get to my week. I was saddened when my favorite You Tube personality decided to stop making videos. I understood her sad last video where she honestly said her heart wasn’t in doing them any longer. I made the same decision about Facebook. When what I viewed as a ministry became a chore and something which was more about me than about others, I had to step back. I still feel drawn to log in and see what’s happening. The pull is real. But I don’t want social media to become my means of staying in touch with the people who really matter in my life.
This past year has made us more drawn to social media outlets than ever. Our phones are idols. We don’t go anywhere without them and we are constantly picking them up to scroll and see what is happening. I felt compelled to unplug. I want to see outside of the screens in front of me. This blog has become a weekly journal where I unleash my feelings and share my thoughts and the results of my hobbies.
People may read them or not. It isn’t my intent to become a “super blogger” or a media sensation. I’m a humble, elderly lady who wants to enjoy what time God has planned for me in my temporary home. I am confident my name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. I know where I’m going to spend eternity and it is a wonderful peace in my heart. I think about how each of us is called to bring others to know and accept Jesus as their savior. I know I’m not an evangelist. My gift is the written word. I’ve struggled for years with how God wants me to use my gift for His glory. I’ve written books. I spent years making positive, uplifting posts on Facebook each morning. I have now retired from both of these. So how do I use my gift now? It is my heart’s search.
I’ve been thinking a lot about how to use my remaining time on earth to bring honor and glory to Him. I am spending more time with God by reading His word, reading nonfiction books by Christian authors, watching and listening to Christian podcasts, and just thinking and praying. I want a deeper relationship with Him. I have a desire to do His will. I want to listen to His voice and not that of the enemy. I’m a work in progress!
As for last week, it was a fun week in many ways. I actually went shopping and bought new clothes and shoes! That’s not something I do. It is not in my DNA…LOL! I filled my refrigerator with healthy foods to eat. I finished a puzzle!! Woo hoo! I finished coloring a picture, too! I now have three works in progress and I am thinking I will have my coloring mojo back this week. Here’s what I have finished this week:
Life is always good if we allow it to be. Think positive. Remember your happiness is your responsibility, not that of someone else. My life changed when I began nourshing my relationship with Jesus. I hope you can find this deep rooted peace and beauty in your soul, too. May your smiles be many and your love be shared. Until next time…
Monday after Easter. The sun is shining brightly. The pear trees are blooming. Jonquils have opened their beautiful faces to smile at the new beginning of spring.
Yesterday was a day of celebration of the resurrection! People saying “Happy Easter!” “He is risen!” “He is risen indeed!” Church was filled with individuals joining their voices in praise and worship. My heart was overflowing with the joy of being alive, being saved, being a child of the King. The sun was also shining, warming the skin of my daughters and me as we sat on the porch together. The small family gathering for a meal after such a long time is exactly what my heart needed. God is so good!
Last week was one where I didn’t feel like doing much of anything. Still feeling cold unless I sit in the sunshine. Boo! I also overdid exercise and slightly injured my knee. My mind is so willing to do things that my body doesn’t agree with. Honestly. I need to be focused on moderation.
This day is beautiful and the temperature is climbing. The sun is working its way to the front of the condo and soon my porch will be filled with the warmth of the sun in mid sixty degree weather. Perfect for sitting outdoors and doing something. I think today will be spent in Bible study. Just me and God. And a cup of tea!
The colors in my life last week were mostly in beautiful yellows smiling from neighboring gardens, and the lovely greens of new spring growth. I didn’t complete any coloring pictures, but I do have two works in progress. Seems my mind and my heart are concentrating on the colors of nature as I watch the once dreary landscape come to life. After a long winter, too much isolation due to weather and Covid-19, and lack of communication face to face with friends and family, I am hopeful for a much more robust spring and summer!
The picture I’m sharing is one I colored early in March. It is the one for buddy color-a-long with two of my daughters which we revealed the end of March. Had to smile because each one of us colored the fairy hair the same color of blue! With the name of the page being titled “Strange Kind of Blue” may have been the catalyst. LOL!
May your week be filled with beautiful colors and may your heart be filled with God’s love. Until next time…
Happy Monday! Happy Easter week! This week I’m mostly focused on Jesus, thinking of the price He paid for my salvation. When I really focus on the pain and the humiliation, the terrible violence of the nails He endured, I’m moved to tears. It is hard to watch reenactments and not crumble into a small heap of unworthiness. I cannot focus on the miracle and joy of His resurrection until after the deep, humble, acceptance of the payment He made. He came to serve and to give His body to ransome me. That love is beyond any other love I can imagine.
The week past, I’ve been struggling on identifying the source of my constant feelings of cold. It’s a condition I’ve felt for several years. Since the doctors haven’t been able to tell me why my body temperature is dropping to hypothermic levels, I’ve had to do some research on my own. It seems that Type 2 Diabetes plays a part in lowering metabolism. One of the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy is the feelings of always being cold. It also can cause anemia and cause circulatory issues. Several times when the weather has been in the low 70’s, I’ve been bundled in sweat pants, sweat shirts, heavy socks, gloves, and even under a blanket and wearing a hat, I’m cold. My core body temperature has dropped as low as 94.6.
What to do? I’m keeping my exerciser (called an elliptical trainer) set in front of the living room television. When I get cold, I exercise for 10 minutes. This actually triggers my metabolism and I get comfortably warm. This will last for a while. I do intend to ask the doctor to test my blood to see if I am low on iron, and even run a thyroid test since my mother had thyroid issues. But I’m doing better with trying to control this on my own. Well, not just me, but with the help of God. He is directing my path of research and action.
I had a wonderful week actually. For the past year, I haven’t done any shopping other than a quick run to the grocery store. Wednesday I went to Dollar Tree to pick up a few supplies, and made a visit to Target where I bought a few more needed supplies. Met a friend for lunch after and then traveled to Hobby Lobby. Disappointed they didn’t have the pens I wanted, but I did purchase a book by Phil Robertson. I love listening to his Unashamed podcast where I learn even more about scripture and how it applies to life. I planned to shop at Aldi’s then for my weekly groceries, but when I parked there, I realized I did not have a quarter! Ugh! So instead I headed to the gas station to fill up my tank, and to the Giant Eagle store near me to pick up groceries. I was exhausted when I got home! But also felt so good about being out and about. Maybe the two covid vaccines have helped make me feel God approves my adventures as long as they aren’t extreme!
At Target, I purchased a puzzle. Only 500 pieces, but it is one I thought might be challenging to work. Ha! I tried to work it on a large piece of cardboard on the ottoman while I watched tv. No way were the cats allowing that to happen. Giving up, I placed the pieces back in the box and ordered a puzzle board for the table. It has 4 drawers to hold puzzle pieces and a piece of felt to work the puzzle on and then (adding a blowup tube) you can roll up the puzzle and store it in a bag. The board then can be kept under a sofa. But I am choosing to leave it on the table with the felt to cover the puzzle. Visitors are rare, so it isn’t an inconvenience. I can eat at the breakfast bar.
On Friday I joined my daughter and her small group at Olive Garden for dinner. What a wonderful time I had! The beautiful person sitting on my right side and I had so much fun laughing together. We triggered the entire table to laugh with us! Honestly, I felt like a teenager again. There is something wonderful about sharing time with ladies with a heart for Jesus! I’ll be joining these ladies for the next four weeks on a Bible Study of Esther. Looking forward to that.
I only managed to color two pictures this past week. One I completed while sitting on my front porch! Oh, how wonderful that afternoon was! The sun felt so good, even though it tended to overheat my colored pencils making them very soft since they are wax based!
Here are the colors I added to my life during last week:
And that concludes my picture show for this week’s blog. I wish you all a blessed Easter week and celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, your salvation, and the hope we have in Him! May your heart be filled with love and may your fruits be multiplied! Until next week…
How do you view the world? I fell into a slump last week when the weather shifted to cold and rainy. I felt totally out of touch with everything! I lost interest in coloring, in reading, in every escape I enjoy. I wanted to sleep to avoid what I lacked feeling. My emotions were topsy turvy and tears threatened constantly. Yet, I couldn’t understand why I was like this. It just wasn’t me.
I prayed for God to help me. I didn’t even know what to ask for, other than His help.
Yesterday, Sunday arrived. I woke feeling much better. As the sun dawned on a beautiful morning, I decided to rearrange the living room just a little. I smiled as I did this, feeling energy rising through what had been a lethargic body. I smiled as the day brightened even more. I left for church wearing only a light flannel shirt over my clothes to warm my arms. As I sang, watching my youngest daughter on stage singing her love for Jesus with a beautiful smile, my heart lifted. God was in the sanctuary, as He always is on Sunday mornings.
After church, I enjoyed lunch with one of my best friends. A couple from church came in after us and we shared a smile and greeting. I laughed. I smiled. I felt in touch with God’s world again.
At home, I opened all the windows and breathed in the warm, fresh air. My son-in-love and grandson came by for a short visit and moved my round glass-top table to the porch. I cleaned the porch, sprayed to deter the spiders and bugs, and cleaned the sun screens. The porch is ready for mornings with Jesus!
I took a walk in the beautiful, warm, sunshine and was happy to complete four laps around the condo area! Slow but steady is building up my muscles and I so enjoyed walking with the warm sun hitting my body. All in all it was a beautiful day. As the sun set, I smiled thinking back over the awesome day God had provided. Then He spoke to me telling me why I’d been out of touch with everything. I had been looking at God’s world with my eyes, but not with my heart.
As I woke to another lovely spring morning, I looked out the window with the eyes of my heart. I saw a striking cardinal fly across and land in one of the pines. Nearly took my breath away! Oh, how much better I see when I look through the eyes of my heart!
I colored only 4 pictures last week which I’ll share with you now:
I’m looking forward to this week. Weather is supposed to be in the mid sixties with sunshine most days. Planning outdoor walks and even some coloring on the porch. After being cooped up for so long, the freedom of enjoying the world outside the walls of my home is intoxicating. God reminds me He is still in control. Our pastor yesterday gave us this advice for when the devil reminds us of things in our past we have been forgiven for to remind satan of his future! I’m going to remember that! May you all have a fabulous week…until next time!
There are times when I want to unplug my television and never turn it on again. Why? I don’t like the time I spend for winding down and relaxing to be a bombardment of things that are just the opposite. I believe in Jesus and stand on the truth of the Bible.
For the past couple of years I’ve been watching shows on Hulu instead of live. Yesterday I changed my subscription to no ads, because even the ads disturb me.
I don’t want to avoid what is happening in the world, so don’t misunderstand me. When my son was in Desert Storm, I glued myself to news constantly. I became very anxious and was unable to sleep. I clung to the worst of the worst media shoved at me and I suffered. One can be aware without being sucked in. Without living life in fear and hopelessness.
I worry about what the young children are dealing with. When all they see is the hatred and anger, the destruction, what are they learning? Are they learning to be better, productive people? Or are they learning how to commit crimes? How to release their fear and anger in the wrong way?
With all the distractions going on, it is easy to focus on the negatives instead of focusing on what we should be doing to prepare ourselves for eternity. See, the good news of the Bible is this: Jesus died on the cross and took my sins with Him, I am forgiven, and when I die I, too, will be resurrected to live eternally in heaven. The commandment I want to live by is to love God with all of my being, and to love my neighbors. If I do these things, then I will live the best life I can here on earth and I’ll be learning how to love the way Jesus did.
I sit here rereading what I’ve written and I almost want to delete every word and write something funny, or inspiring, or “fluffy.” But I needed to get this off my chest. My intent is not to offend anyone. It is just a brain dump of my personal thoughts. How I wish we could all learn to just love one another and find peace. I know this isn’t going to happen. The Bible is a living testament to this truth. But I can choose. I’m given that freedom. So I may choose to unplug.
So last week, I took some time off. Down time. I colored less. What time I did spend coloring was mostly with markers instead of pencils. I needed to destress and relax. Here is what I completed:
Happy to report that the Rose Windows book is completely colored! Two books so far this year on my finished shelf.
I’m disappointed in the last picture I colored with pencils. I think I will print it on card stock and try again using markers. But I still had fun coloring her and am excited to receive the book. Unfortunately, due to delays in shipping from England, I still haven’t received the February release yet.
I wish all of you the best and leave you with these words taken from 1 Corinthians 13:7-8. “Love. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” May your lives be filled with love given and received. Until next time…