Thursday, 27 January 2011
And the irony of it is that last week's chapter was about us women looking after our health!
For this week's Chapter, which is about including Bible reading as a regular part of one's day, Colletta has posted a summary.
Just to be boring, I agree with everything that LBW says in this Chapter, and I also agree that the most bizarre conversations can lead to a quick 'Jesus-chat' (especially in the car!).
To look at a couple of excerpts from her text:
'Without God's Word I won't be equipped for my work.'
Too true! How many times have I had to step off the Carousel for a minute and say, 'Dear Lord, PLEASE HELP!' If I'd asked in the first place the Carousel might not have got so dizzy, crazy fast!!
The Lord wants for us 'a life flowing with blessings, delight and fruit.'
SURE He does!
But the fact that the 'blessings' come with an unstoppable 'I Wanna' recording, like those old talking dolls there used to be (without the removable batteries);
the 'delight' can be tempered with much anxiety and sorrow;
and the 'fruit' is very often bitter, as well as having a stone in the middle, isn't mentioned.
Paul, and the New Testament letter writers make it perfectly clear that a life walked with the Lord is NOT a life free of troubles, but isn't it other people who are meant to have the troubles? Not our families and friends...troubles and despair are for the nebulous 'they', aren't they?????
Trying to 'read the Bible in a Year is aiming too high.'
Twice have I begun, and already this year I am floundering. Its just that when there's so much to read in a day, I leave it until I'm too tired to start. LBW points out that it is the 'small steps', acts, decisions which 'are the important ones, rather than the grand gestures' and sure haven't we all learned that by experience?
Two minutes is better than none.
Reading over a Psalm won't get the whole Bible read, but isn't there always comfort and even a new or forgotten lesson to be had from the Psalms?
Prayers at bedtime are better than none, as is Grace at mealtimes which gets everyone in the habit of saying 'thank you'.
(Funny story about saying Grace at the end!)
'Use every opportunity to share God's Word.'
Opportunity knocks more frequently than the door-to-door sales people, so grab 'em...uh...the opportunities rather than the salespeople, but then again........???
Children LIKE to talk and they have opinions on everything (I KNOW), so use this,
especially in the car,
or waiting rooms,
or hanging around,
(horror! you don't feed your children at MacDonald's do you?! Me? Moi? Noooo...uh...sometimes....)
One Bible verse which I have leaned on continuously over the last twenty-one years of rearing delightfully blessed fruit-cases, is this: Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22 v6)
Lastly, two verses which I thought were relevant:
When your words came, I ate them;
they were my joy and my heart’s delight,
for I bear your name,
LORD God Almighty.
(a bit odd of Jeremiah to eat a scroll, or us to chew on our Bibles, but the joy and heart's delight is right enough.)
The way of fools seems right to them,
but the wise listen to advice.
(HA! HA! HA! Isn't this SO TRUE!! The fools bit anyway!!)
OK, three verses:
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
Yes and yes and YES!!
And, as mentioned above, I'll leave you with my favourite 'Grace' story:
When Eldest was little she loved sitting at the table with us for mealtimes, balanced on a stack of cushions, with a tea towel tied round her neck. (We lived in the African bush, ok? No mod cons) And she knew that 'Grace' was always said before eating.
What she hadn't twigged was that 'Grace' was about thanking God, but this we didn't realise.
One day, after the Hub said 'Grace', she studied her food for a minute then asked, 'Say 'Grace' again, Dad.'
So he did.
She picked up her spoon, tried her food, put it down and asked, 'Say 'Grace' again, Dad.'
He did, but we were well puzzled by then!
It transpired, after some questioning, that Little Eldest thought that 'Grace' was said to let the food cool down enough to eat! How we laughed! (Still do!!)
Goes to show, you can teach them good habits, but understanding is also necessary!!!!
Wednesday, 26 January 2011
no exaggeration you who's sniggering away there,
and I picked it all up,
walked down the passage to put everything away,
...and dropped the lot.
Madre de Dios!
I tell you,
some days one just isn't meant to get out of bed.
Monday, 24 January 2011
Text incoming: They are playing the 'Gladiator' soundtrack in the Bank!
Text outgoing: Don't be flashing your sword at the cashiers. They won't like it.
Text incoming: Was tempted but I refrained.
Text outgoing: Whew!
Text incoming: Indeed they escaped with their lives!
Hmmm...Whatever blows your hair back, I guess!
D'you know what Mail Art is?
I just thought doodling on envelopes was a teenager thing, which everyone does, and then grows out of. But no! Its an Art Form! and...
Tricia, at French Kissed, is having a Mail Art Contest and Swap, which, if you really get your skates on, you can still join in! There's great prizes, and even if you don't be after gettin' one of them grand yokes, you'll still be receivin' your own personal doodle sample-
PS. I just spent this evening doing mine, and of course they're fabulous...actually they are not! My ever reprehensible sense of humour got the better of me and they are just plain daft!
And, fyi (getting used to the teenager lingo-speak, here!), this week I aim to figure out how to work the folk's scanner. Yez all seem to do so many clever things with scanners I thought I should join the fray!
And another thing (there always is, sigh...); you know the way they say that if you do a thing for one month it will become habit and will stay with you?
Well, does that go for existing on liquid and mush instead of proper food?
By the time the phantom earache is sorted, a month will have passed, during which I'll be gurgling the intake!
But one advantage is that by then there might be a bit less of Yours Truly, WobbleBottom Extraordinaire.
And that, mes amigos, would be A GOOD THING!
Thursday, 20 January 2011
mid-writing yesterday the most awful pain hit my head, after a weekend in bed with phantom ear-ache.
Doctor says no reason for pain, went to dentist...knew I'd regret that.
Butchery, to be finished in three weeks.
Jaw problems, to be seen to after that- knew I talked too much.
Today come out in eczema and rash, body sympathising.
I'll be MIA for several days...I think....
not quite so bad
bit more human, return to dentist this afternoon...
apple sauce and zilch else
if there's any alcohol to spare out there bring it on, and hurry...
Monday, 17 January 2011
old wool sweater washed on 'hot' to shrink,
part of old sheet,
and leftover patchwork strip.
The mat I made was about 10" x 14". First I cut about 11" off a leg of the jeans, trimmed off the bulky lower hem, and cut along each seam to remove. (trying to sew through these seams is likely to break the needle on your machine.)
Then I rejoined the pieces with a flat seam, and cut off about a 3" strip from one end.
Friday, 14 January 2011
Thursday, 13 January 2011
I'll link to Greg's meme when I'm done...
The hugest Thankful is knowing that the Hub's sister and her family, who live in Brisbane, are fine. Thank you Lord!
1) Thankful for the Hub's continued employment. He doesn't enjoy the job, but regular money coming in is not to be sneezed at!
2) Thankful for chocolate and strong tea. Helps cope with the Hub's foul humour when he returns from work!
3) Thankful that Youngest returned to school this week without an almighty fight.
4) Thankful for some mild weather, dark and damp, but not that bitter, cuttingly damp cold we were having for many weeks.
5) Thankful for quiet days when I can sew and knit to my heart's content, and recharge the old batteries!
So what are your Thankfuls, amigos?
Wednesday, 12 January 2011
I agreed, and suggested we were in the middle of a solar eclipse?
The older ones didn't think so.
Well, sez I, perhaps when the night was over, God forgot to switch on the sun?
The middle section got that, but thought it would be even darker if that was so.
Then, sez I, perhaps when God was switching on the sun, His elbow knocked the dimmer switch?
They all agreed that that was a possibility...except for one Junior Infant who put up her hand and explained: 'Its because it's the winter and the sun don't be so strong.'
I told her she was absolutely right, and was I the joker? She agreed!
Tuesday, 11 January 2011
In which we read Chapter 2, and discover about over-commitment, non-conforming and how to fly!
Colletta's post summarises the Chapter beautifully, so please go visit her to know what it is about: these are just my own thoughts...
Review on last week: Improving the Balance of my Life...
Total disaster! Ended up with me furious, the Hub mad, and Youngest in a sulk. Appears they didn't really want to be 'focused on' and I resented the fact they didn't appreciate the effort I was putting in....
Yeah, yeah, stupid, selfish, unnecessary...we've returned to drifting, but with clean laundry, and I'm trying to space out the chores better for myself...
Now, this week:
What LBW writes about not over committing outside the home is a fine theory, but in practise it's not always that straightforward. I totally agree with her priorities- God, then family, then community, but sometimes the time ratio between those three does not reflect that.
I have given this much thought over the years since I had Eldest, and there are two basic categories that, to me, can and often do, tip the time and commitment balance, and they can be of equal weight.
Sometimes the 'need' you see in the community is simply your call, but answering it will affect your whole family?
To give a personal illustration, as a part-time school teacher, I am involved in the lives of quite literally nearly two hundred children (not including past pupils, now teenagers, who continue to stop and talk, chat, discuss things). When a problem or emergency arises, by default, as a mother and teacher, I can often be involved. When teenagers fall out with their parents they need their friends to be there for them.
All these times of service I count as my call, and my privilege, and my children are invariably involved.
Which leads to my second consideration, that sometimes, as your own children stagger through their teenage years, you need to have other young people around in order to cope with your own! Its easier to get five to turn off the TV, sit down for a proper meal and discuss things, than one. And sometimes, all they need is a safe environment to be themselves and the issues simply melt away!
I don't suggest that LBW means to turn away from one's Christian duty, but its just that some homes are more of a Community Center than others!
I do like the paragraph at the end which tells us we can all be different and not to compare yourself to others. This I find difficult.
Other Mothers always seem to-
be more organised,
be better dressed,
have cleaner cars,
have tidy sitting rooms,
have children who practise their music without a row and do neat handwriting,
and create a wonderful first impression when you arrive at their homes with weed free entrances.
That's before you even look into their kitchens, which are immaculate...heck! even their dogs behave!
This, I can work on...
And finally, the Bible verse for the week, which made me laugh out loud:
Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
(So far, yes, absolutely...)
He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
(...and I get this, that the Lord holds up those without the strength to hold themselves...)
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.
(...Oh yes? OH YES? Its very beautiful imagery, but along the lines of flying pigs!
Now, if Isaiah had finished with something like...
'Flying pigs will they see flapping round their homes;
they will run and run and although weary unto death
they will, with God's grace, keep on running,
they will walk and stagger and faint
and the Lord will pick them up and carry them.'
...that would have been more realistic to us homemakers!)
So this week I will try to keep up with the nitty gritty of the chores,
and not compare myself to all the other Mary Poppins 'practically-perfect-in-every-way' mothers out there!
Oh! And about that suggestion to leave the Hub with the home for a weekend? You've got to be kidding! I'd be traded in for a more compliant model in the blink of an eye!
One of my friends once asked her husband: 'What did your last servant die of?'
Back came the reply: 'Insubordination.'
Says it all really...
Monday, 10 January 2011
T for 2: Golf Manual for Couples.
Broad in the Bean: Dictionary of Legumes.
High and Dry: A Teetotaller's Expedition Up Everest.
Cut and Run: Gorilla Hairdressing.
Bag and Baggage: The Story of Posh and Becks.
Lay It On With a Trowel: Make-up and Beauty for Gardeners.
Alls Well That Ends Well: Lessons on Running a Deep Sea Oil Rig.
And then again...maybe not....
The weather is doing a 'Mull of Kintyre' here, with the mist rollin' in thick and fast!
How about a bit of inspiration for the start of the week? It's an old post but I saw it on another blog and think its still plenty relevant to another year!
Friday, 7 January 2011
The garage hasn't yet managed to get the Hub's car road-worthy due to dealing with so many emergencies, and since the weather has turned bitter again, its not feasible for him to cycle, so, no car for me. (Meh! as eldest says when she feels short-changed.)
Loads of housekeeping to catch up, really exciting stuff, like laundry- I'm pretty sure that the girls came home with no clothes of their own and wore Youngest's all hols...how else to explain the amount of laundry needing to be done?
The Christmas Tree needs to come down today, should have been yesterday, traditionally, but the folks offered us a day out to Enniskillen so we jumped on their band-wagon and went! They needed the company, you know?! Photos next door, it was a beautiful winter's day.I really am trying to balance out family and everything else, but my head feels like there are windmills inside. Its difficult to concentrate when so many things need immediate attention...whoops, and the dog just got his paw caught in the flex of the good lamp- golly! but that was a good save missus!!
Despite the low temperatures (or is it because of them?) its a beautiful day today, incredible blue sky with hardly a cloud in sight, light bone-disintegrating breeze, and the frost and snow dusting is melting in the sunshine. Sunny days in Winter are so truly beautiful!
(Apologies for any odd spacing, blogger won't let me organise this post, it keeps deleting things. Ah well!)
Wednesday, 5 January 2011
There is a sort of mad line of thought here...mad? Heckety? You've gotta be kiddin' me!...
To start at the beginning, I am trying to make more of an effort to keep up with the 'Bible in a Year' readings, since sporadic wouldn't even begin to describe last year's progress.
So far, not good. I began on the 3rd (well, you saw how Jan 1st was for me...), and last night had to give up as the Hub was telling silly jokes and I couldn't concentrate (hey! do I get brownie points for spending quality time with him??)
ANYHOW, caught up this morning with a wonderful verse- shut your eyes and listen to this:
The note says that this verse concerns God's wisdom. Wisdom is like a fountain whose words would pour out in great streams, constantly refreshing and strengthening us.
Isn't that a lovely mental image? I love fountains, and waterfalls, and streams and even the springs that seep through the ditches when it has rained a lot. Imagine if all that water was full of God's words and we cold stick our hands under to catch them, or our heads under to have our minds filled, or drink to be filled up!
The next thought came when I opened the curtains and saw the rain pouring down, and another dark, grey day. Not that I mind, since I plan to do inside things today and Youngest is working her way through the boxed set of 'Hornblower' she got for Christmas, blood-thirsty child! And despite the snow, its been dry enough this winter and the rain is good.
But that's merely an observation, here's the thought:
I so want a poly tunnel for me veg...regular summer readers will know that I get a bit obsessed with 'me veg' when the weather is warmer...But the thing which has bothered me about a poly tunnel is all the watering necessary,which seems a contradiction in the usefulness of it?
I've been trying to work out how to collect the water and store it, but haven't come to a solution (you realise there'll be no buying fancy equipment here, its got to be constructed from either junk, or cheap stuff) and then BINGO!! I opened a Permaculture Magazine which had got buried under the Carol Service Music (yeah, yeah, and 'tidy' is my middle name...) and inside was the answer- an underneath reservoir! (Gallery's a bit tricky to navigate but worth it if you are interested- its 'greenhouse' you want.)
And the writer is in Scotland, so if it worked there it'll work here...now I need to work on the Hub, and then persuade the Calry Church-Warden that he'd love to come and dig a hole in our garden with his nifty little digger yoke!!!
And just to finish, here's a joke a visiting Organist told us on Sunday:
Definition of an 'expert':
an 'x' is a very small insignificant thing, and a 'spurt' is a drip of water under pressure.
Therefore, an 'expert' is an insignificant person under pressure!
Warned ya it was disjointed!!!
Tuesday, 4 January 2011
Colletta has done a lovely introduction to the book, which you can read here, so I shan't repeat it, but just add my thoughts.
The first observation which made an impression on me was the conflict between the worldly view of a homemaker and the Godly woman's view of the same. Its difficult not to succumb to the worldly view often and often, I have found.
How many times has any Mother felt worthless, or useless, or on the wrong path, or just plain inferior, because she chooses to not work outside the home...as if there isn't a million times more work inside the home! How many of us have, or know friends, with small children, invalid family members, elderly parents or in-laws, who help with Sunday Schools and Church activities, Mothers' Union, look after working mothers' children after school or when they are sick, keep open house,and are then regularly envied because we 'do nothing' all day?
I have to laugh, really I do!
The women with the salaries, do they have to patch the bath towels, knit dishcloths from string, cut down clothes for another child to wear, grow their own veg, and scan every article on 'Thrifty Housekeeping' to cross their paths?
Heck! We are the ones who should be writing the Thrifty Housekeeping articles; it may be a 'life choice' for the salary earners, but its a way of life for us homemakers!
The second thing which struck me in the course of reading Chapter One was the realisation that I don't think I have my attitude in balance at all.
If I am a homemaker then what exactly are my priorities, after my God?
Parents, brother and sisters.
And then the wider community; Church members, School staff and children, friends.
And finally, when all else is done, any projects like the Etsy Shop and commissions, and personal projects.
I have let the order become skewed, with School taking precedence over home, and the Shop rising slowly up the list of priorities.
So this week my aim is to redress the balance, in my own head as well as in my actions. To look after the family members with my whole heart rather than resent the time they take away from making dolls or playing with fabric.
Small aim, perhaps...but as L.B.W. says in the first Chapter- eternal repercussions!
Monday, 3 January 2011
Let it Rain, Blow, Snow
And about that other thing we all do in the New Year, that dodgy issue...Resolutions...
I've some new ideas which will hopefully be of interest to yez all, but for the second year in a row I am avoiding making any actual Resolutions. Its not that I disagree with them on principle, its just that since I seldom manage to keep them, why waste the effort of thinking them up?!
But on the other hand, I would like to achieve a more balanced daily life, so perhaps that should be a Resolution?
Colletta had the idea to do a sort of project along those lines through the year and I went and got the book: there's a fairly grey line between 'good intentions' and 'resolutions', isn't there!
And finally, something Nikon Sniper posted during Christmas week...if this doesn't fill your heart...well...what can I say?!
Saturday, 1 January 2011
1. Drop glasses, kick them, can't find glasses without glasses.
2. Tea-tray brought to bedroom (once a year event, if lucky), new tea-pot, bad pourer, drip tea all over bedspread so have to leap up and bundle into sink of cold water to avoid staining.
3. Don't close shower curtain properly and soak clean clothes I was about to wear...
4. Haven't done ironing, no more shirts in wardrobe.
5. Hair Conditioner finished, severe problem (to say nothing of pain) wrenching comb through tangled bird's nest which passes for hair on the head of your's truly.
6. Problem with incoming water so pipes rattling and gurgling fit to bust. Hub been called in to work so endure with trepidation.
7. Dogs try to see off Hub on return...
Nine o'clock and all's.... well have a good day yourself!