14 February 2009

Reflections of Love-for those I love

Dear Hubby, Family & Friends~

Love is like a walk in God's garden; the longer I'm in the garden the more I see of its beauty. Wishing you all a blessed Valentine's Day!

Love always,

Photo: Taken at Snowbird, Utah and modified in Adobe PhotoDeluxe.

Another Note to Readers

I've been making a few changes around here and so will leave a quick note re: them. Changes made or being considered are:

  • I've increased the size of most photos to make them easier to view.
  • Within a few days of the above change, I changed the 'Title Photo' to one I took this past spring when I was in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. It was a difficult decision between mountains in the Rockies and the NW but I loved the blue skies and green of the photo I used. It just said spring & summer to me! Hope you also will enjoy it; if not I am sure it will be changed in a month or so..
  • I also moved some elements around just because I was ready for a change there too.
  • I was thinking of changing the font---from an italic one to a non-italic one. I'm not sure if this is because of my "advancing" age or not:) Basically, I really like italic fonts, but they are not quite as easy to read then the non-italic ones. So, I am calling on you-any readers out there- to help me a little here with your opinions, should you have one, about the font.

    Choice 1: Do you like this?

    Choice 2: Or do you like this better?

    Choice 3: Or maybe this?

    Just kidding about that last one, although I do like that ear MUCH better then the photo I took of my granny ear yesterday. Yea I do strange things--but they're ALWAYS for a good reason. Well most of the time they are.

    Blessings, A

    Now for those of you who have a Pandora's box complex, like me, or who are on a 'need to know' basis or who are Sherlock Holmes in the making...that little webdings section was-----

    (to be continued---JK!!)

12 February 2009

100 Years Would Not Be Long Enough

Dear Hubby,

We had a big scare here recently and I was very worried; I think you may have been too. But now everything is OK and we both can breathe a sigh of relief. Thank God for answered prayer and more time together!

“If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day so that I never have to live without you.”

This quote describes how I feel, but I wonder--since I really do LOVE you, would I want you to live that last day in sorrow?

With Love, A

Source for quote: http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/A._A._Milne#Attributed attributes this quote to A. A. Milne, author of Winnie the Pooh and other writings; however this is not proven from what I could find. See this link for further information.
This quote is to be found on many websites.

11 February 2009

A Walk in His Gardens--spring & summer style

Sorry, but it was bound to happen--I completely forgot, neglected to do and/or procrastinated on posting last week's 'Walks in His Garden'. Yep, it's true - I am actually admitting to imperfection and it doesn't feel too bad. Well maybe just a little bad--after all I've been a perfectionist for a long time. But I am working on changing that:)

However, I did walk, drive and take photos of my adventures in His Gardens last week-but you'll have to take my word on it for now. Why? Well for one thing I do try to be honest and for another the 'proof' is still on my camera awaiting transfer to my new external hard drive. The good news is that this GREAT transfer will (hopefully) happen soon. You see I have incentive because on that very same camera are amazing photos of one of my most wondrous grandchildren:) And I LOVE grandchildren photos!!

That being said, I am still working up my courage to do the BIG transfer because I have not worked with this type of hard drive before. I did make a big step today though; I actually unwrapped the plastic which encloses the box that the drive came in. Brave, huh?

So for this week, I'll try something different for the 'walk'. Something a little quirky but not too much so. Something done to honor all the groundhogs who voted for early spring and to protest Phil's forecast this year for 6 (well now less) more weeks of winter.

Now I know you're all saying--what is she talking about? You mean Phil of Groundhog Day (and Pennsylvania) fame is not the only one of his kind who has the ability to "forecast" the end of winter? Nope!

Surprised? Yep it's true--what we never hear is that there are more "Phil's" and that some of his kind actually disagreed with his gloomy forecast this year. So in honor of Queen Charlotte, General Beauregard Lee, French Creek Freddie, Malverne Mel, Staten Island Chuck, Dunkirk Dave; and just because these last few weeks I see some signs of spring too -- I present, for your viewing pleasure, spring & summer in God's gardens of the NW.
Each spring you see fields of colorful tulips and other bulbs in the NW. This photo was taken in the rural fields of Marion County, Oregon. To the east of this field stand the gorgeous Cascades; to the west the coast range.

Further to the south and much closer to those Cascade mountains are the towns of Sweet Home and Foster. They're located on one of the highways that cross the Cascades to Central Oregon. This is Foster Lake.

North of the Columbia River in NW Washington is the beautiful, wild and totally scenic Olympic Peninsula. There you will find rain forests, Hurricane Ridge and the Olympic Mountains, the Juan de Fuca-which separates the peninsula from Canada (Vancouver Island) and many, many other amazing sights. And there, even though you won't see it, is part of my heart. You see I have a habit of leaving a little bit of my heart in places like the Olympic Peninsula. But back to the photo--this was taken on the way to Port Angeles, probably in the Dungeness Bay 'area' of Sequim.

This is the Lady Washington, of Pirates of the Caribbean fame, in 2002. She was in the Wooden Boat shipyard of Pt Townsend. I have loved her ever since and I am not alone in my affection for the Lady. I know she isn't one of God's Gardens, but the men who made her are His handiwork, the wood that she is built from is of His making and from His Gardens, and the oceans she sails on are His creation too.
Long may you sail, my Lady!
Finally, back to God's gardens--the Blue Mountains of NE Oregon. I have loved this area since my teen years--I still do:) This area gets a lot of snow and very cold. To get here from the western part of the NW you also need to travel up the very famous Cabbage Hill--well known for its very interesting road grade. But the photos of that will have to wait for another day:)

" And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:12 KJV

"While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease." Genesis 8:22 KJV

Blessings, Aimee
Photos: as described above:)

God--the Artist and His handiwork

Wisdom and a message of love from Norway---

A couple days ago one of my favorite bloggers, a Norwegian Christian pastor, had a post about a youth club outing that she had been involved with. The blog author included a quote of one of the girls who had done the devotion that night.

As I read it; it really hit home for me for it perfectly describes the relationship that God has with us--His children, His creation, His handiwork.

  • God is the greatest artist---the beauty of nature all around us is proof of that.

  • As an artist, He is devoted to the work of His hands--just as a dedicated artist cares about the work they create.

  • All nature, including we who were made in His image, are proof of God's care and love (remember the lilies of the fields, knowing when a bird falls to the ground and providing rain, sun for those who believe in Him and those who don't too)

  • God is at work in our lives. Sometimes, we may not see that as a good thing--for some changes are painful--BUT He's doing it because He cares --as in deeply, totally loves us--the creation of His hands; His children.

  • God does all of this because He sees what we should be like, just as a great artist ’sees’ the finished masterpiece in his mind. And just as earthly artists want the work of their hands to be perfect; so does God. He wants us to reach our potential--to accomplish what He planned for us to do; to be who He wants us to be--as a loving, perfect, just Father. And remember, He sees the finished work of art--we don’t.

  • Finally, just like His work at Creation--the changes He makes with “great love and care” will be good. For all that His hand creates, as the perfect Artist-loving Father-caring Creator is good.

Take a look at the post--I think you’ll like this simple, yet deep message from this young Norwegian girl! Here is the link: http://limeblog.net/2009/02/09/youth-club-goes-alpine/

“And God saw every thing that He had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” Genesis 1:31 KJV

“ The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth His handiwork.
Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.” Psalms 19:1-3 KJV

“And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall He not much more clothe you, Oye of little faith?” Matthew 6:28-30 KJV

“Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.” Matthew 10: 29-31 KJV

“..He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matthew 5:45 KJV

“…being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:” Philippians 1:6 KJV

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" Romans 8:28 KJV

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” I Corinthians 13:12 KJV

Blessings from a fellow 'work of art in progress", Aimee

Photo: NW State Park in spring.

09 February 2009

A Note to Readers

A note to readers:
So sorry about the inconsistent spacing (or lack of spacing) in some of the posts. I am having a struggle with the Html and often the post looks much different then it does in the preview. Oh well--it is a small thing comparatively speaking and I will try again to rectify it later.
Until then--I beg your patience and understanding at this beginner blogger's efforts:) And now---time to cook that heart shaped meatloaf. Yum-food!
Blessings, A

For those who visit -- a question please. Would you prefer the photos be a bit larger or is the current size sufficient? I am on a dial up modem so I have been reducing their size to a minimum but could increase it slightly if needed.
Thanks! A

Update 2/11/09:
I've gone ahead and enlarged the nature photos of new posts, except heritage photos which I have decided -- for now -- to keep small. Hope this makes your visits more enjoyable to the blog. I know that I am happy with the new size:) TY again for stopping by!

A Week of Love--meal & other plans.

This week I am trying to include a lot of heart shaped entrees and desserts; a not too difficult thing to do because I've bought a LOT of heart shaped cooking contraptions and bakeware over the years-none of them very expensive.
I also want to use a lot of red--partly because of its tie to Valentine's Day and partly because I have a lot of red items in the house already (red and various shades of red being my favorite color). Some plans so far---
  • Entrees: heart shaped eggs, heart shaped meatloaf, beets cut into heart shapes (ditto red pepper slices), beef patties shaped like hearts, heart shaped 'meatballs' with pasta. Maybe individual quiches...or heart shaped pancakes.
  • Desserts/Treats: frosted & painted heart shaped cookies, linzer tart cookies, mini heart shaped cakes, heart shaped, red "jiggle" jello and trifles...and on and on. Possibly Swedish fruit soup too and also "Danish dessert" which I can use as fruit soup, layer with whipped cream or pudding or use as a fruit glaze.
  • Placemats: purchased some pretty but inexpensive ones in shades of burgundy and another in red with matching cloth napkins.
  • Dinnerware: found a beautiful pattern in -- red-- but decided against it because it was something I really did not need but only wanted. I did buy some inexpensive, made in the USA clear glass dinner plates, mugs, glasses and trifle 'cups' though to add to some items I already had. All very adaptable to many other settings/ celebrations.
  • Blooming bulbs: not in red (well unless the not-quite-bloomed yet hyacinth is red). Pretty, colorful, nice, inexpensive. Note to self--need to still pick up tulips and make some baskets with ferns.
  • Valentines: already sent some 'love' cards out--to some family that live out-of-state. Bought a box of some really cute ones that look like they were created by kids (with a good message about love on them); also bought some individual cards for a few people. Am giving (and have already given) small gifts to close family members. Next year might try for homemade gifts. .
  • Chocolate and more chocolate--some heart shaped, some in heart shaped boxes for my chocolate loving hubby. We have already started on them:)

Well it is getting late so ...

Blessings & night y'all! A

08 February 2009

A Week of Love for those I love (and those who just happen by)!

My love is not perfect. In the past I've let work and other stresses, impatience, laziness, selfishness and even fear get in the way of showing love to family and friends in the way I should (and could) have. I hate to admit that, but it's true and I wish it was different. It's not that I didn't show love to those around me; it's just that I could have done it better and didn't.

But the past is gone, my shortcomings forgiven and the good news is that each new day brings with it a fresh beginning (opportunity) to be more loving to friends and family still here; and to show that love in tangible, meaningful and creative ways (more about that later).

My inspiration for this Week of Love (which I really desire to be the start of a permanent, everyday change) comes from I Corinthians 13--the so called Love Chapter.( Note: this is the King James Version of that chapter, but you can find a link to more information on this chapter and other easier to read versions of it here.)

Why do I include this chapter here? Well since God is the only One with perfect love, I thought it'd be good to see what He says about it as I seek to become more loving. Keep in mind, as you read through this well known chapter on love that the word 'charity' equates to the word "love" (agape--selfless, perfect love)

"Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."

Blessings, A

Photo: A very modified photo of a heart shaped egg ring. actually the very same ring I used for this morning's breakfast!

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