Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Sunday Afternoon: Vintage Thingie Thursday

Yesiree! It's that time again...Vintage Thingie Thursday! Every Wednesday night, when it suddenly dawns on me that the next day is my favorite blogging day, I say to my husband: "Guess what tomorrow is?" He says, "Vintage day!" Yep, he gets excited for me too! If you have the chance today, go on over to Coloradolady's blog and check out Vintage Thingie Thursday.

Today I am showing off something very special to me! When I was a little girl, my mom, brother and I, went for a walk one day and found this plate at a yard sale. We thought it was very special and ended up giving it to my great-grandmother, Grammy Irma. She hung it in her kitchen and it was always my most favorite thing in her home. When she passed away in 1999, this plate was the only thing I wanted from her things. It has always hung in whatever kitchen I've had, these last 11 years.

Last year, I was snooping around in a thrift store and found this framed picture of the same scene. There are minor differences, but it's obviously meant to be the same picture. There are no markings on the picture at all but the plate does have a silver and red sticker on the back that says, "Japan" and the numbers 5956 are written below it. Along the bottom of the back of the plate are written the words, "A Sunday Afternoon".

I looked all over online tonight but can't find any information on it at all. I'd be interested to know which scene came first: the plate or the drawing. I'd also like to know if there are other things out there to go with it--perhaps a figurine?

Thanks for stopping by today---hope you have a wonderful Vintage Thingie Thursday!

God is NOT on our side!

Joshua 5: 13-15-- "Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, "Are you for us or for our adversaries?" He said, "No; rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the Lord." And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, "What has my lord to say to his servant?" The captain of the Lord's host said to Joshua, "Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so."

A pastor friend of ours posts daily Bible studies to his Facebook page. Today I was reading his notes on these verses and was struck by this: "God is not on our side. We are on his." Or rather, we should be on his. Often times, when reflecting on a crisis situation for example, people will say, "Thank God we had the Lord on our side." However, that's not exactly the case. It's not like God looks at a situation and chooses which side to be on. God is good and true and right and just in all sides and situations.

When we come over to God's side, we often reap the benefits and blessings of his protection so it would seem that he's pleased with us for "doing right" and is rewarding us by being on our team. The problem with that logic comes when we try to see the flip side. If he's rewarding us by being "on our side" and allowing us to live a happy, easy, blessed life, then what does it mean when life turns scary, ugly, difficult and unfair? It must mean that God's not on our side anymore, right? These bad things must indicate that God is mad at us and punishing us by removing his blessing.

That is SO not the case! While it's true that we will reap these bad "side effects" of disobedience, often times bad things just happen to good people (whole 'nother topic---not goona go there tonight!) The Lord promised never to leave us or forsake us (Josh. 1:5). David encourages us with this thought: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me" (Ps. 23:4).

However, God is not going to sanction sin--no matter how slight or unconscious. That's why he can't be on our side--we are sinful beings. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23). We fluctuate between good days and bad days. We have our own wills and they're usually self-centered. How wise we'd be to come over to the side of the one who is steady and unchanging!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

(Can't Think of a Non-Sacrilegious Pig-ish Title): Pink Saturday

I'd first like to apologize to all Pink Saturday participants. I've just been made aware that due to an unforseen circumstance, my Pink Saturday post did not get put up. In desperation, I've put this up as I'm just about to leave for the day and won't have a chance to do a new one. This is an old post from a couple of years ago. I'm aware that the only thing that makes this one "count" is the pink piggy icon---but hopefully I can squeak by this week and you'll still enjoy the "deep thoughts" (Ha Ha) of this post anyway. Have a great Pink Saturday everyone--I look forward to visiting other PS blogs tonight!

, I really had to think about it to get the following revelation to line up to some spiritual truth...so bear with me.

You know on Charlotte's Web, at the end, when everyone is singing the praises of the pig. "He's Some Terrific, Radiant, Humble Thing-a-Majig Of a Pig"... Well, I was contemplating that song today and realized something. It's not the pig who is terrific, radiant, humble, for crying out loud---it's the spider!!! The pig did absolutely nothing to make himself praiseworthy---it was Charlotte, his spider friend, who used all her gifts and abilities to make him shine. Did anyone ever think to give glory to the spider? Nope, she just gave birth to her most magnificent masterpiece...and then died. Talk about humility...

So, it got me (eventually) thinking about Hebrews 11. In this chapter, we find the Hall of Faith...all the great men and women of renown and all their worthy accomplishments in the name of faith. Not to discount these honorable brothers and sisters in the faith---but don't we see some liars here? Some murderers? Adulterers? I mean, when we look really closely, the things that make these people worth remembering are all the things that the Lord has done in their lives by his power and covenant with them. It is nothing that they have done on their own. They would be unmentionable nobodies---runts doomed to death---if it weren't for the Lord.

That chapter that we refer to as the Hall of Faith---from now on, I'll try to consider it God's Hall of Fame---and give credit where credit is due.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Folksy Finds: Vintage Thingie Thursday

Yahoo! It's my favorite blog party of the week: Vintage Thingie Thursday! Visit Coloradolady to see everyone's special vintage posts!

I'm extra excited today to be showing off a few of my "folksy finds" from the last week. My husband gave me a couple hours and $20 and told me to have a good time...so I hit the Salvation Army! I'm not hard to please :) Some of my treasures included a set of 12 linen dinner napkins that had never been used, a set of 12 vintage glass dessert dishes that I plan to use for jello, and a surprise vintagy treat that you don't get to see until Christmas time!

Today I thought I'd focus on the things I found that were in my "folk art" theme that I love so much. First of all, I found a neat little kitchen plaque with a cute rhyme about homemaking. It reads: My Kitchen Prayer--God bless my little kitchen, I love its every nook, And bless me as I do my work, Wash pots and pans and cook.

I love the old fashioned cook stove, geraniums and checkered tablecloth. I even have a chair that looks just like the one in the picture!

The second and third things I found that are sorta folksy are this hot chocolate mug and soup bowl.

The cup is definitely vintage and reminds me of something...(help me out here, Mom!) I'm not sure if the soup cup is vintage or not but it's got that same sort of feel so it will do! It translates to Creole Soup in French (I think...). To cook creole style, one would use a spicy sauce made of tomatoes, onions and peppers. It's likely this cup will see more clam chowder, potato soup or broccoli and cheddar than anything else!

I've saved the best for last! I'm so, so very excited about this one! I have been a collector of a certain style of figurines for awhile now but have known nothing about them. Some people call them Hummels but I know that they're not. In fact, the artist is named Erich Stauffer and the figurines are put out by a company called Arnart. I was so excited to discover this adorable musical figurine sitting amongst the knick knacks at SA! It is in just perfect shape and plays the tune, "Jack and Jill" beautifully. I've been trying to find one online to read more about it but can't find anything similar. I just think it's the most adorable thing ever and feel very blessed to have found it!

Have a wonderful Thursday!

Liam: Wordless Wednesday

Happy One Month Birthday, Liam Bradley!

Visit Wordless Wednesday!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Life We Don't Yet Know

I was flipping through an old journal tonight and came across an entry dated March 14, 2000 with this quote from Jeff Lucas: "The life we give Jesus is the life we don't yet know."

At the time of that entry, I had been following Christ for about a year and a half---about the same amount of time that I'd been married. Our first child was only 3 months old. My husband and I were both 20 years old.

I don't remember, of course, what went through my mind at the time that I wrote that down---but I'm sure I had no idea really what it even meant.

I was still another three and a half years away from the day when I would cry out to God and ask him to forgive me for my on and off loyalty to him, my husband and my family---the day that really turned my life around for the better. I was still another seven years away from the most horrible day of my life yet---when I screamed into a bath towel at the top of my lungs for half an hour as I delivered my miscarried child at 8 weeks along. I was still ten years away from the day that I would plead with God, with complete peace and belief in his goodness, for the life of the child I was delivering in an emergency procedure---the child who turns one month old tomorrow and is sleeping peacefully and healthily at the other end of the house now.

So many times we are afraid to give God our lives because they are filled with so many things that we don't want to give up. When God was asking me to give my life to him back in the fall of 1998, I was reluctant for several reasons. I knew that by completely laying down my will, I'd no longer be "allowed" certain pleasures: the seemingly innocent flirtations and attentions of men who weren't my husband. The ability to "settle" any dispute with a string of profanities---a slap across the face---maybe even a shove to the ground for whomever I was arguing with.
I'd have to be responsible to an earthly authority, my husband, and a heavenly authority, God. I'd have to give up my music, my movies, my mind games and my manipulations. I'd have to be honest. I'd have to be vulnerable.

On one hand, I wish that I could have taken my 19-year-old self on a time travel tour of what life would be like just a decade later...although I have a feeling that the former "me" would not be able to recognize the "present" me---so it would be a wasted trip! What peace and comfort and calm that would have brought to the younger "me".

On the other hand, if I'd had known then what I know now, I wonder how much of it I would have screwed up trying to make sure it happened? And...I wouldn't now have the joy and wouldn't feel such overwhelming thankfulness in looking back to see what a beautiful thing God has made of my life.

God is so faithful. He can be trusted---he loves us! I thought I knew what life I was giving God when I gave him my life 11 and a half years ago. I thought I was giving him the life of a lying, disobedient, unfaithful, hate-filled, and very hurt girl who had grown up way too fast and thought she knew it all.

In reality, God destroyed all that in the transfer. What I was really giving him was a clean, white canvas on which to paint the masterpiece that is, and will be, my life. I was giving him at least 11 years, 10 months, and 20 days of the beautiful marriage of two best friends. I was giving him Lynzie, Michael and Elisha. I was giving him the opportunity to step in and consecrate my life and roles as mother and wife. I was giving him Cainan and Selah. I was giving him the open door to change my heart and draw me close through the loss of Baby Hope. I was giving him Avalon and the chance to show us all his miraculous healing power in Liam.

God, what else have I given you? What are you going to do with the next hours, days or even years of my life? I'm still giving you my life---and I'm still trusting you to make it so much better than I could ever have dreamed to ask you for. Thank you for proving yourself faithful over and over.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

"Any one can Bake!" -- Blue Monday

Today I'm linking up with Smiling Sally for Blue Monday! Visit her blog for more Blue Monday participants!

A couple months ago, my mom gave me a box of recipes and cookbooks that belonged to my great-grandmother, Annabelle. We are pretty sure that a good majority of them belonged to her mother, Tresa Baker. Tonight, while looking for something blue to share with you all, I spied this promotional cook book put out by the Royal Baking Powder Co. in 1927. Since Grammy Annabelle was only 12 years old then, I'm assuming this was my great-great grandmother's book.

The book is titled Any one can Bake and the cover features a picture of kitchen items and the words, "Price $2.00" at the bottom. It is in really nice shape with a tight binding and glossy pages---several of them are in color. OldCookbooks.com lists it to sell for $38.50 for an excellent copy and $14.50 for a super beat up copy.

Not only does it feature lots of great recipes, but it also has many, many tips and ideas for table setting, menu planning, entertaining and nutrition (page 42 is titled: "Cookies--Wholesome Sweets for Children").

In the section labeled "Menus and Menu Building", the following sentence is used: "Similar vegetables such as macaroni and white potatoes or macaroni and rice or potatoes and rice should not be served at the same meal." Now who can tell me what is wrong with that sentence? Ha! Also, the following are listed as "combinations to which we have become accustomed": corned beef and cabbage, pig's knuckles and sauerkraut, roast duck or goose and apples, roast pork and applesauce, roast veal and tomatoes, buckwheat cakes and sausage, fish and cucumbers. I can honestly tell you that if buckwheat cakes are what I think they are then that is the only of those combinations that I've heard of or eaten! However, even though I thought we had not one more meal in the house and were in desperate need of a grocery shopping trip, now that I know fish and cucumbers are an acceptable meal, I can unthaw those few salmon patties in my freezer and serve them with the handful of cucumbers I've got in the fridge!

A menu plan "that will interest the 16-Year-Old" on page 87 prefaces it's choices with the following: "Every young girl is anxious to give a party that is different and to be assured that her boy and girl friends are going to have as fine a time at her home as at any other. The kinds of cake or sandwiches or other dishes that the boys like will always be the ones decided upon." Ha! I won't write them all out now but I can say that most of them involve coffee and toast!

My favorite part of the book is the very last page, "Hints for Young Housewives". There were a couple of really great ideas, as well as some that I'd already had to learn from trial and error! I liked this idea for keeping a round, cut cake fresh: "cut the desired number of slices from center of cake. Push the two remaining pieces close together like a whole cake and it will keep moist and soft for several days." Duh...I can't believe I haven't thought of that yet!

All teasing aside, I really think this book will come in handy as I plan to invite the ladies of our church (all but a handful of them are great-grandmothers) over for a get-together now and then. I'm sure it will really bless them to have me make up some of these recipes that they probably remember having as a child or preparing as a young wife.

Enjoy your Blue Monday!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

A Grand Day Out: Gratituesday

Today I'm linking up with Laura at Heavenly Homemakers for Gratituesday. If you get the chance, visit some of the other participants to find out what they're grateful for today!

We've recently moved to northern Washington and have been excited to explore the surroundings.A couple of weeks ago, my husband planned a fun day out for our family.

We began at the Washington State University Discovery Garden in Mount Vernon. What was estimated to be about a 20 minute jaunt around a few paths turned out to be a 2 1/2 hour stroll through garden upon garden! It was beautiful! There are way too many pictures to post and too much to tell so I'll just include a few highlights!  

I thought the most interesting plant was this giant rhubarb. I know it looks big in the picture but I'm telling you...this thing was HUGE! It was seriously three feet tall! I don't think they grow 'em like that in eastern Oregon???
There was a special garden just for children where Selah and Lynzie posed with some favorite story book characters.
Alice, The Mad Hatter, and the Queen of Hearts were all hiding in the bushes.  
Elisha was really excited to find what he thought was a beehive. (Although he called it a "bee hind"). Turns out, it was just a storage box for hoses...but I couldn't convince him so we got a picture in front of the "bee hind".

I thought it was really neat that they had a little bit of everything and that there was something for everyone. There were rose gardens, herb gardens, areas specific to fruit plants and others for vegetables. There was a veteran's memorial and a children's garden. We got a little turned around in a thicket of trees and even saw a frog in a pond in the "native to Washington area".

One part of the garden that I thought was especially useful was a pavilion that featured several gardening ideas for the handicapped. There was a big display that showcased lots of different gardening tools to aid those who need a little help in gardening. There were also displays to show creative ways to allow those with impairments to enjoy the plants and soil too. For instance, there was a little garden planted in a high, table-like planter for the visually impaired:

There was also a display of a garden built into a planter with seating all around it so someone who was not able to stand or bend could sit on the edge and work in his or her garden:  
My favorite display of all was the Espalier trained apple tree!  You can read more about Espalier training here but the picture should give you a pretty good idea what they've done. Can you imagine having your apple tree grow out along your fence? So awesome!  
After an "interesting" lunch in the car (I grabbed the peanut butter and bread but forgot a knife...Jamie had to spread it on with a pocket knife while I was feeding the baby!), we headed out to Whidbey Island to take some pictures.

We eventually ended up in a little town called Coupeville and found a park where Jamie stopped so the kids could play and I could feed the baby. Jamie put flowers in my hair:

Then he found a trail that we walked down to a little beach just the right size for us!
There we found lots of sea shells and skipped some rocks.
It was a really great day and the best part of all was that we spent it together!

Mc Call's from January 1966: Pink Saturday

It's Pink Saturday over at Beverly's blog, How Sweet the Sound. Head on over, if you have the chance, and visit other Pink Saturday participants!

I recently visited my next door neighbor, the thrift store, and found this Mc Call's magazine from January, 1966. I stood there and flipped through it for a little bit---since several of the stories and ads caught my attention, I decided to go ahead and buy it. I'm sure my mom will enjoy it when I'm done. She was 9 years old in January, 1966.

This magazine features several photos with the color pink. The first thing that just cracked me up was this ad for Frigidaire refrigerators. Check out their "Space Age" suits, helmets and goggles!

The next ad that caught my eye was one for Comet cleanser in the "pretty, new Bathroom Size!" Now this is something that I really wish was still around---Comet in a plastic container! I don't know about you, but there has been more than one instance of my Comet shaker can getting all nasty from a leaky pipe under the sink! How smart to make them plastic---I wonder why they ever took them away??

My mom would really enjoy the next ad for the Columbia Record Club (now Columbia House...for
cds and dvds!) Here's one especially for you, Mom!

What's up with the accent mark over the "e" in Cher?

My husband loved this ad for
Dermassage skin lotion...because "You don't have to be fat to be soft"!! So funny!

Have a happy Pink Saturday!

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