Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A fun fall getaway

This past week we were privileged to be able to take a little getaway trip up to the northern part of our state for a couple of days. We stayed at a place where we had stayed before, and had enjoyed very much. Last time we were in cabin 4, which has a nice view of the water but is not directly on the water. This time we were blessed to be able to stay in cabin 3, which is right next to the water. What a treat! I love lakeside or pondside houses, and I always hope that my mansion in heaven will be waterfront property -- because I could never afford it here on earth!

What a blessing it was to be able to get away, even if only for a few hours. Rain was heavily in the forecast, but it held off until late Friday afternoon. God is good! We were able to go for a long walk along the lakeshore in the morning, and Mr. T was able to take a kayak out on the lake in the afternoon. And we spent hours just sitting on the dock -- with coffee and our Bibles in the morning, and, for me, my Bible study in the afternoon and lots of cross-stitching time on the "Snow Angels" picture. It was a truly restful and refreshing time. Other than our walk, we did not leave the property. We just soaked up the beauty -- the fall color is at its peak up there already -- and the peace and quiet. The evenings were cool enough to enjoy a fire in the fireplace. We have said to ourselves several times that this is the most worthwhile $200 we ever spent. We needed to get away that badly! We are very thankful to the Lord for providing for this little respite in the midst of His beautiful creation.

Here are a few photos of our time up north. (The photo at the top of this post was taken on our last morning there. It is the view straight across the lake from the dock.)

This photo was taken on the dock. It shows a little table and chairs located right next to our favorite Adirondack chairs. You can also see our cabin (and its grill, which we didn't use, doing our cooking inside the cabin). You can also see a glimpse of the stone steps leading down to the dock. The small wooden table is used by fishermen as they clean their catch.

There were several pansies springing up in the stone stairway to the dock. Here is one of them. I thought it was a great reminder to bloom where we are planted... even in a situation that doesn't look too comfortable.

Here is one of the bends in the road that we saw on our walk Friday morning. Isn't it a beautiful prospect? It made me think of Anne of Green Gables and how she saw changes in life as bends in the road. And they are so fascinating. One never knows what will lie around the next bend. I'm thankful that the Lord does know, however!

This was the fireplace in our cabin. Isn't it gorgeous? Love that screen.

And last but not least, another view from the dock. This one shows not only the glorious fall foliage but also a pair of loons. How nice it was to hear the loons calling as we drifted off to sleep, as well as during the day.

All in all, a most wonderful time!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Show & Tell Friday for September 19

I don't have anything really exciting to show today, but did want to participate in Show & Tell Friday. A friend and I were talking (via email) about country fairs and the fun of going to them and also of entering things like baked goods, pickles, crafts, etc. to be judged and possibly win prizes.

A number of years ago, when we still had a country fair in our town, I did enter some needlework and won at least one ribbon. I can't remember now all that I entered. But this one sweater did survive, so I dug it out of the cedar chest to show you all. I won a second place ribbon for this crocheted child's sweater. In 1978! 30 years ago... it just doesn't seem possible.

So that is my simple show & tell for today. To see what others have shared for Show & Tell Friday, head on over to There is No Place Like Home

and check out the links. Happy Show & Tell Friday, everyone!

Sew Crafty Friday for September 19

Finally I have a moment to share something for Sew Crafty Friday.

First, here is the dress I've been working on for my little granddaughter. It's from an older (1980) McCalls pattern I originally bought to make for my own daughters, but never did. I still need to add buttons, buttonholes (3, in the back yoke) and hem the dress. It should still fit her next summer, thankfully! The weather is a little too cool to wear a sleeveless dress now.

This is the cookbook I have nearly finished for a very belated wedding gift.

And this is a look at two of the cookbook pages. I embellish them with cutouts from catalogs, etc.

Last but not least, here is the "Snow Angels" cross stitch I recently started working on. This kit, which is on 18 count Aida (gulp!), was given to me by one of my daughters. It reminded her of herself and her older sister and winters long past. You can see that I have a good start stitching the older child. There's a lot of shading in it, but I think it's going to go quite quickly once the two children are stitched.

How about you? If you have managed to accomplish or even start any crafting this week, then head on over to Waiting for Him and share your projects. Shereen and others will be eager to see what you have to share.

Happy Crafting!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Menu Plan Monday for September 8

I've missed the past couple of Menu Plan Mondays, so I'm jumping back in again this week. It's a warm, sunny, breezy day here in northern New England. Here's my menu plan:

MONDAY: Italian Chicken Chili (leftover from Sunday's potluck); Italian Sweet Bread

TUESDAY: Denver Omelet Pie, Warm Fruit Compote, Jam Biscuits

WEDNESDAY: Philly Cheesesteak Pizza, Corn Chowder

THURSDAY: Apple Glazed Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans

FRIDAY: Cranberry Turkey Burgers, Sweet Potato Oven Fries

SATURDAY: Vegetable Lasagna, Italian Sweet Bread

SUNDAY: either leftovers, or Ground Beef Stew and Italian Sweet Bread

If you would like to see menus which others have shared, head over to I'm an Organizing Junkie and check out the links. Usually close to 200 people -- sometimes many more! -- share links to their weekly menus. You'll find some great ideas and often recipes too.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Pouring out our hearts before God...

This morning I started doing the study Intimacy With God, by Cynthia Heald. It is a Bible study in the Psalms. This morning my assignment was to read Psalm 62 and note key words and phrases that communicate an intense longing for closeness with God. Here is a phrase that I've been increasingly blessed by over the years; it especially stood out to me in my reading this morning.

"Trust in Him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before Him: God is a refuge for us." (Psalm 62:8)

The idea of being able to pour out one's heart before God is such a blessing! It reminded me also of Lamentations 2:19: "Pour out thine heart like water before the face of the Lord."

I decided to see what some of my favorite commentators had to say about this phrase from Psalm 62:8.

Spurgeon wrote: "Ye to whom His love is revealed, reveal yourselves to Him. His heart is set on you... turn the vessel of your soul upside down in His secret presence, and let your inmost thoughts, desires, sorrows, and sins be poured out like water. Hide nothing from Him, for you can hide nothing."

John Berridge, quoted in Spurgeon's Treasury of David, wrote: "He is never weary with hearing the complaints of His people; therefore you should go and keep nothing back; tell Him everything that hurts you... Make Him your counsellor and friend; you cannot please Him better than when your hearts rely wholly upon Him."

All of this reminded me of Philippians 4:6-7 and what H.A. Ironside had to say about those verses:

"Be careful [anxious] for nothing: but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

"And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."

Ironside writes: "The Spirit of God... would have me bring everything, the great things and the little things, perplexing conditions and trying circumstances of every character, into the presence of God, and leave them there. By prayer and supplication, not forgetting thanksgiving for past and present mercies, He would have me pour out my requests unto God. I may feel that I do not know the mind of the Lord in regard to them, but that need not hinder. I am to make known my 'requests', counting on His wisdom to do for me that which is best both for time and eternity. Thus, casting my care on Him, and leaving all in His own blessed hands, the peace of God... a peace passing all understanding, shall guard, as with a military garrison, my heart."

This made me think, too -- when we "pour out" all of our concerns to God, it is easier to leave them with Him.

What an encouragement to me today! I hope it is an encouragement to each of you as well.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Praising God

I have just finished the wonderful study A Place of Quiet Rest (subtitled Finding Intimacy With God Through a Daily Devotional Life), by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. One of the chapters gives many of the reasons why we should incorporate a time of praise to God in our daily quiet time. Even though I was already doing this on a regular basis, I was challenged to spend even more time praising God each morning. Many of the reasons for praising God were ones I was familiar with. But the quote that follows was such an encouragement to me! Here it is:

"We should praise God because praise defeats Satan. Satan hates praise, because Satan hates God and anything that exalts or pleases God.

"One of Satan's strategies is to get us to focus on ourselves -- our needs, our problems, our circumstances, our feelings. When we lift our eyes up, though they may be filled with tears, and choose to praise the Lord, Satan's plan is defeated and God is victorious in our lives."

Isn't that wonderful? Many times of late I have found myself praising God even though my eyes are filled with tears. He is so good -- all the time!