Sunday, July 31, 2011

They call them Dinnerplate's for a Reason

Since I started this "baby" blog, I'm taking more pictures...which is a good thing.  I have more pictures.  The downside is that I have more pictures to process.  But in this scenario...the upside wins! My true blogging challenge is the amount of time that photo work takes to get a blog to look good.  No one told me about this....ladies??? (eyebrow raise {:)

My beautiful white Dinnerplate Dalia.  No, I don't remember it's name.  I may have it stashed somewhere, but as much as I like to organize, it has not been something I've been able to keep track of.
By the kitchen sink

The beautiful thing about Dalia's is that you are supposed to divide them every 2 years.  That means every other year you get to double your yield.  For free =) Woohoo!
And! Gopher's don't appear to like them....but the slugs/snails/ants/earwigs do, so I have to faithfully put out the bait, otherwise, the plants never get out of the ground.  Literally!  In fact, I pretty much every year find a plant nibbled to the nubbins and put out the bait and do it again for a couple of weeks....and yabbadabba, they grow new leaves and forgive my thoughtlessness.

Random frugal thought of the day in regards to coupons (yes, I use them)

....You save the most money when you don't go to the store.

Profound, I know.

But it works!

Ok, here it comes.....drum rolllllllllll!  Question of the day....comments on fb links count........what first came to your mind when you read "frugal thought"?  hehe, should be interesting. 

just say so nicely =)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Family - Always important...but sometimes they leap the the top of Everything

We all value our family.  We would all say that they are important, and that we love them.  Yet when one member has a close brush with death...why does their perceived value escalate sharply in our minds?  There is your thought question for the day.  Remember, I don't want to lecture, a conversation is sooo much better.  And...a conversation doesn't happen unless you comment. you know how I feel about all those unexplained page views.  I have a stats board, people, I see the numbers  =)

As you probably know...I reside in a wonderful and quite unique family.  My paternal family all lives out of state.  They are wonderful.  I love them, but when you are out of state, you only spend so much time together.  Especially when plane tickets are (almost) required.  So I grew up more influenced by my maternal family.  My maternal grandfather died when I was 7.  Thankfully, even though I have a legendarily poor memory, I do remember him.  I remember his state-of-the-art-quite-small-MSDOS computer with the green screen commands.  He was an engineer for the state of CA, helped design/build the CA aquaduct, and other major public works.  I loved playing checkers with him, but he never let me beat him.  I know I played in his large garden with him,  but I can't say I remember that, just the pictures of me in the dirt.  Grandma  has been a widow for 26 yrs.  She has 4 daughters, the youngest of which married and had 3 daughters. Lots of women in my family.

Godly women who aren't afraid to teach the younger women.

They remind me regularly to value my vocation highly.

They have taught me how to give, regardless.

They have taught me how to serve the local community...selflessly.

They have taught me how to be hospitable.

They taught me how to antique  =)...oh,  I got so tired of stopping at antique stores when I was a teenager on a trip with them.   Now we drive past with our chillins and I long to just browse...(with 4 littles...are you kiddin' me? )  Go figure.   They've also taught me how to get rid of the extras (it's easy - sell it or give it away)

The list could go on for a long time.  They each have unique personalities and gifts...even if some of you get them mixed up, I never will.  I could list their lovable unique characteristics here, but it might embarrass them. Quilts, flowers, fabric, gardening, little lovely gifts, card making, scrapbooking, cooking up a delicious storm!...they are creative in many ways...brightening their homes and the lives of others.  I often complain that I didn't get the "J" creative gene. I channel mine in different ways, I've learned. (sortof)

Here are some pictures of these precious women.  Pray for them these next few weeks - that A. Virginia will continue to recover her health.  She has several hurdles, pneumonia, a ventilator, etc. Pray for the others as they are under an unusual amount of stress.  Pray for safe travels as people go up and back. Pray for peace in their hearts, and wisdom as they make a myriad of decisions.  Pray for us, that we know "when" to go.

So I told you there were a lot of females, yes?  So my maternal Grandmother has only 1 sister.  She has 2 daughters and 2 sons.  These two daughters are honorary aunts in our family.  They are so kind and always lend a touch of lovely to our family get togethers.

So, just to keep your brain father has 3 sisters.  His mother also has 3 sisters. His father had SEVEN sisters (and one brother).  There are 20 of us first cousins on my father's side. The ratio? 15g:5b So you can see why I was pretty sure Aaron would be a girl.  Ha!  I guess our generation is introducing the boys into the works.  No, they are not quiet.  Maybe for a little while, but not for long....hmmm.

Well, I think my essay has been a bit of the wandering kind.  Kind of like my mind this week.  Flitting here and there like a hummingbird.  I saw a hummingbird today in my impatiens basket.  Ok, I'll stop =)

Grow - Even When Pruned

Ever since working at Scenic Nursery for 4 years, I have relished the flowers that God put on this earth.  They add beauty to our everyday lives. Arrange a few lovelies in a vase and they are able to perk up someone else's day. (So much fun to give away!)  A week ago last Thursday, Stephen went down for a nap before Sarah woke up for the day.  Aaron and John had went to visit the neighbors and I unexpectedly had uninterrupted time.  So not only did I go out and pick flowers, I also snapped a few photos.  A post had been brewing in my head since observing the following picture.

You see, this arrangement started probably a week prior with 8 stalks of Gladiolas.  Glad's have the unusual ability to grow after they are picked.  I changed the water and pulled the bottom few droopy blooms off of the stems every few days.  and the stems, once tight and compact at the top, reaching ever straight for the sky just keep growing. I'm not sure if the curvy one above was just extra long and didn't have a strong enough stem, or if it was growing towards the light.  Regardless, they rather intrigued me. they have a soft sweet beauty that doesn't reside in the fresh bouquet.  This day I picked a new handful of glads....and you can see the difference in how they look

"Grow in grace and in the further knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ".  Sometimes when we are pruned, we stick straight up with pride...perhaps resisting the grace that God wants to soften our lives with.  "I" don't like to be wrong.  "I" don't want to be humble.  God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.

Let's all keep growing, growing in grace, even when pruned.  It's hard, it's not fun...but oh the beauty of praise it brings to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

We felt pruned in Annual Meeting 2009.  One of my favorite blessings to come from that is our roses.  You see, we used to have 7 or 8 crepe myrtles below our slope lawn.  They were a blah light lilac color, always mildewed, and (b/c they had originally been bush form pruned into tree form) would always grow ugly crops of suckers all summer long. So AM 09 gave us the impetus to pull them out and I planted 14 roses.  7 Pink Perfection, and 7 Mr. Lincoln. My plan was to have multitudes of roses all the same color =)   This is their 3rd year and the bushes are strong and hardy.  I'm loving all the flowers that they produce.  Blessings out of Pain, yes?

The square Atlas pt canning jar has turned into a favorite vase since it has a chip that will prevent a seal =)
This little vase only holds a few, but fits on our small bathroom counter quite nicely.  Flowers in my bathroom always feel like a luxury =)  Maybe this inspires you to grow when pruned or maybe just to add some beauty to the everyday life of a busy house.

So by now you know me and my thought questions....this time you get to pick one to answer!

 How do you bring beauty to your home?  or the harder one
When have you grown when pruned?

And yes, a family post is coming...had to get this one out of the way first.

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