Thursday, December 29, 2016

pine boughs

“He smelled the odor of the pine boughs under him, the piney smell of the crushed needles and the sharper odor of the resinous sap from the cut limbs. ... This is the smell I love. This and fresh-cut clover, the crushed sage as you ride after cattle, wood-smoke and the burning leaves of autumn. That must be the odor of nostalgia, the smell of the smoke from the piles of raked leaves burning in the streets in the fall in Missoula. Which would you rather smell? Sweet grass the Indians used in their baskets? Smoked leather? The odor of the ground in the spring after rain? The smell of the sea as you walk through the gorse on a headland in Galicia? Or the wind from the land as you come in toward Cuba in the dark? That was the odor of cactus flowers, mimosa and the sea-grape shrubs. Or would you rather smell frying bacon in the morning when you are hungry? Or coffee in the morning? Or a Jonathan apple as you bit into it? Or a cider mill in the grinding, or bread fresh from the oven?”

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Christmas Home Tour

I have been enjoying the Nester's Christmas Tour of Homes each year since I began blogging back in 2007!  (although I believe BooMama was hosting it back then)  

I really enjoy "visiting" with others in blogland and the exchange of visits and comments that goes on as well as seeing everyone's different styles of decorating and also sharing/recording for myself to look back on how I decorate for Christmas around my house.  

This year though, Myquillyn wrote the most thoughtful and wonderful post about the tensions between our lives here in America and celebrating Christmas and what is happening in Aleppo, Syria.  I really encourage you to read it.  You can find it here.  

I enjoy sharing our home with you but even more than that if you haven't heard of the work Preemptive Love is doing, I would really like to encourage you to check them out on Instagram, the web, etc.  I have been following and learning about this organization for over a year and I think very highly of them and the ways they love and serve well.  

Here are six things they shared tonight on their instagram account:

preemptiveloveThe situation in and around Aleppo continues to develop rapidly. Here are six things we can share about the crisis and our ongoing response.
1. Our emergency feeding program is continuing, thanks to you. Already, your support has allowed us to double our response as more displaced families pour into the Aleppo countryside.
2. We’ve handed out thousands of sleeping bags, just as winter is setting in. It’s 34 degrees in Aleppo tonight, and snow is expected on Sunday. Each sleeping bag can accommodate a mother and two children. “No one has ever told us they were cold in one!” our response leader said today.
3. We’re working with a coalition of partners inside Syria, to reach as many as possible with lifesaving aid. We are better when we serve across sectarian, religious, or national lines. Our response is more sustainable when we share capacity, knowledge, and resources locally. We’ve learned this through nearly a decade of serving in Iraq, and we are taking the same approach as we serve in Syria.
4. We’re one of several organizations responding to the Aleppo crisis, but the needs are greater than all of us put together. More needs to be done. A lot more. But thanks to you, families are being fed. Lives are being saved.
5. This is a volatile, rapidly changing situation. Reports from the ground are changing by the hour as evacuation deals and ceasefires are made and broken and made again.
6. We serve everyone in need, period. If you want to know what side of the conflict we’re on, we’re on the side of families whose lives have unraveled in all the violence. We’re on the side of the bombed-out, driven-out, desperate children and mothers and fathers who lost everything. We’re on the side that says violence unmakes the world, and it’s our job to remake it. We will keep showing up with tangible acts of love for as long as it takes.

And finally, a little bit of our home . . . 

David was on top of things bringing in the logs that he has been playing with all summer just as it began to get cold because he wants fires this winter to roast smores, etc.!  

cut out piece of "door art" bought many years ago in Canton, TX and a fantastic book page wreath made by my talented mother-in-law

the hammock swing corner . . .

the hammock chair was a very special birthday gift from my brother-in-law and sister-in-law, stars bought ages ago at the Samplehouse Warehouse sale . . . those were such fun days when they had that . . . 

and the color!

water color and oil pastel original art by yours truly :) 
made at our very own Fine Arts Center here in Colorado Springs

busy wall of Christmas cards and all the garlands 


colorful Christmas coffee table

Merry Christmas!  


Friday, December 9, 2016

For unto us . . .


photo taken December 2015

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


"There are only withered leaves and frosted stems in the garden now." 
                                                                                                - L.M. Montgomery

Sunday, November 13, 2016

1 Chronicles 16:23-36New International Version (NIV)

Sing to the Lord, all the earth;
    proclaim his salvation day after day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
    his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
    he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are idols,
    but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
    strength and joy are in his dwelling place.
Ascribe to the Lord, all you families of nations,
    ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
    bring an offering and come before him.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of his[a] holiness.
    Tremble before him, all the earth!
    The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved.
Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
    let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!
Let the sea resound, and all that is in it;
    let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them!
Let the trees of the forest sing,
    let them sing for joy before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.
Cry out, “Save us, God our Savior;
    gather us and deliver us from the nations,
that we may give thanks to your holy name,
    and glory in your praise.”
Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting.

Then all the people said “Amen” and “Praise the Lord.”

Friday, November 11, 2016

bathroom progress!

This has been a HUGE project but we really are SO close to being done.  

awesome storage in this cabinet full of drawers in the wall and at the bottom . . . my husband's BRILLIANT idea . . . the laundry chute!!!!

I am loving this niche . . . one of my big wishlist items that my sweet husband and MIL made a reality for me.  And this quote . . . SO MUCH TRUTH!! 

sink and countertop!!!  

and a faucet!!

already a great place to play :) 

art on the walls and almost done!!!  

Thursday, November 10, 2016

ten on ten - November 2016






home remembering




Stepping over

It's been a good day!  Thursdays are the day that David and Cora are both in school away from home (one day a week homeschool program, preschool + "Nana school").  I so enjoy my time with them throughout the week and wouldn't choose to be doing this any other way but these days of quiet and being alone are recharging.  

I signed back up for the FlyLady email list for this holiday season.  I like how she gives "holiday cruising missions" and thought that a little prompting would be good for me in preparing for a sane holiday season.  Hence organizing my grocery list and going ahead and thinking through some of the food items we will be likely to want to make around Christmastime and going ahead and stocking groceries that are non-perishable (or can be frozen) in the house.  

So proud of my sweet girlie who can put her own socks on!

One of my awesome friends brought this lovely cyclamen plant to me the other night and I am enjoying it so much.  It brightens my kitchen and makes me smile!  

Today I invited the moms from David's one day a week class over.  Two moms came and we really enjoyed visiting, sharing ideas and learning about each other and our families.  We enjoyed Apple Cider Floats together for a treat!  

Someone is almost sure to say they'd like to have bacon for Christmas morning breakfast so I went ahead and got some.  Don't worry, I only came home with one of those packages!  Do you have a favorite bacon holiday recipe?

You can take the girl out of Texas . . . 
Cora LOVES grapefruit right now and this was her request.

Slowly but surely making the returns of stuff we didn't use on the bathroom remodel and wrapping this project up.  Unfortunately I forgot to take the Home Depot receipt but I successfully made several other returns today.

I make at least weekly trips to the library to turn in books and pick up our holds.  David is on a Magic Treehouse kick right now.  

Getting ready for a music class that I am hosting tomorrow.  Love making music with my kids and their friends, breaking out the instruments and teaching them new things!

The floor at the end of the school day.  Still working on putting our things away when we come in from the house!

Ten on Ten


Take a photo every hour for ten consecutive hours on the tenth of each month. Document a day of your life and find beauty among the ordinary moments. Then share your beauty with us!

Thanks, Rebekah, for the great idea of documenting our days this way.

I hope YOU had a good day!  What did you do on this tenth of November?  (bonus points to everyone who leaves a comment!)

And just for fun:

Friday, November 4, 2016


Sunday, October 30, 2016

this week

sparkly wand making for my little Halloween princess

putting flowers into the new niche in the bathroom for the first time!  One of my very favorite parts of the remodel

our breakfast book stack

We are enjoying beginning our days with a feast of words, a Bible story/devotional thought, a short poem or two (they are begging for these now which is really fun to me since I haven't been much of a poetry person before), a hymn that I sing to them and a line from the Anne of Green Gables daybook . . . some words that fit the season . . . 

On Tuesday David and I took advantage of free breakfast at Chickfila day and did our All About Reading there while we ate breakfast and he also enjoyed the storytime and coordinating craft as well as some good exercise in the play area.  

the bathtub got refinished!!!  Goodbye 60 year old porcelain that was so hard to clean!

It finally rained!  We haven't had rain in the longest time and usually we get our first snow in October but unless it happens tomorrow (which is not predicted) then it's not happening this year.  

some beautiful fall shots from a morning walk I took

thankful for our flexible schedules which let me get out and walk before the kids were up and before Adrian left to work

carving pumpkins per the kids request!  

yay for huge pumpkins from Wal-mart for only $3.88!

Our Italian friend who is visiting got in on the action and helped Cora with hers.  The kids LOVE lighting them up!  

roasted pumpkin seeds!  

geoboard Halloween math inspired by Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls

practicing analog time

tally marks and number sentences

On Friday we did school in a fun and different way.  I made a list of several things, some of them Halloween related crafts/activities/math etc. and some our regular subjects, some part of our morning work (laundry, etc.), books to read, snacks to eat, outdoor experiences, etc. and the kids and I rolled dice and added up all of the numbers on them to see which item on the list we landed on and then we would do that thing.  It added a lot of interest and novelty to our day.  

These are the things I know I will forget if I do not write them down as I have already forgotten so much that we did just last year. 

Hope your week has been good as well!  


Saturday, October 29, 2016

the family that bikes together . . .

This is our preferred method of transportation these days!  We absolutely love it.  

photo credit:  my sil Mandy