Kenneth Grahame ~ Wind in the Willows

From the Wind in the Willows ~ by Kenneth Grahame

“The weary Mole also was glad to turn in without delay, and soon had his head on his pillow, in great joy and contentment. But ere he closed his eyes he let them wander round his old room, mellow in the glow of the firelight that played or rested on familiar and friendly things which had long been unconsciously a part of him, and now smilingly received him back, without rancour. He was now in just the frame of mind that the tactful Rat had quietly worked to bring about in him. He saw clearly how plain and simple – how narrow, even – it all was; but clearly, too, how much it all meant to him, and the special value of some such anchorage in one’s existence. He did not at all want to abandon the new life and its splendid spaces, to turn back on sun and air and all they offered him and creep home and stay there; the upper world was all too strong, it called to him still, even down there, and he knew he must return to the larger stage. But it was good to think he had this to come back to, this place which was all his own, these things which were so glad to see him again and could always be counted upon for the same simple welcome.”

“This has been a wonderful day!” said he, as the rat shoved off and took to the sculls again. “Do you know, I’ve never been in a boat in all my life.”

“What?” cried the Rat, open mouthed: “Never been in a – you never-well, I-what have you been doing, then?”

“Is it so nice as all that?” asked the Mole shyly, though he was quite prepared to believe it as he leaned back in his seat and surveyed the cushions, the oars, the rowlocks, and all the fascinating fittings, and felt the boat sway lightly under him.

“Nice? It’s the only thing.” said the Water Rat solemnly, as he leaned forward for his stroke. “Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing – absolutely nothing- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Simply messing.”

I read The Wind in the Willows for the first time in 2008 and that same year Dear and I went to the Rose Bowl Flea Market where I saw and purchased this teapot by Sadler from their Classic Stories series.

While we were in Oxford in September of 2022 we took a stroll through Holywell Cemetery.

The friends of Holywell Cemetery need some more friends to help keep up this cemetery.

The reason I’m adding photos from this cemetery in this post about Kenneth Grahame is that we stumbled upon his gravestone in this cemetery. We saw a few gravestones of note. This one is Kenneth Grahame’s. His son is buried here, also. He died tragically when he was just 20.

The Beautiful Memory
Kenneth Grahame
Husband of Elspeth
Father of Alastair
Who Passed the River
On the 6th of July 1932
Childhood & Literature
Through Him
The More Blest
For All Time
And of His Son Alastair Grahame
Commoner of Christ Church

Another headstone we took note of was this one for Charles Walter Stansby Williams.

Charles Walter Stansby Williams was a British poet, novelist, playwright, theologian, literary critic, and member of the Inklings, an informal literary discussion group associated with C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien at the University of Oxford.

Have you ever read The Wind in the Willows? I found it to be very entertaining and heart warming. I’ll leave you with one more quote from this children’s classic.

“Here today, up and off to somewhere else tomorrow! Travel, change, interest, excitement! The whole world before you, and a horizon that’s always changing!”

Enjoy your horizons!

Hello March Hodgepodge

If it’s Wednesday it must be Hodgepodge. Jo From This Side of the Pond is coming in like a lion with these questions for the first Wednesday in March.

1. Is March coming in like a lion where you live?

So far March is not coming in like a lion here in the northeastern corner of Washington state.

Aslan, Simba, Elsa, The Cowardly Lion…your favorite ‘famous’ lion? 

Aslan is my favorite lion introduced in the Narnia series of books by C.S. Lewis.

When a young girl from America wrote C.S. Lewis a letter asking what name Aslan used in our world, he replied:

“As to Aslan’s other name, well, I want you to guess. Has there been anyone in this world who

  1. Arrived at the same time as Father Christmas?
  2. Said he was the Son of the Great Emperor?
  3. Gave himself for someone else’s fault to be jeered at and killed by wicked people?
  4. Came to life again?
  5. Is someone spoken of as a lamb?

Don’t you really know His name in this world? Think it over and let me know your answer.” 

2. In what way do you ‘march to the beat of your own drum’? 

I don’t wait around for my dear husband to plan special events for us. I’m more of a planner and schemer and he is perfectly happy to enjoy and pay for my schemes. This has worked well in our relationship. He’s happy for most of the roads we’ve traveled because I plow ahead.

3. What item that you don’t have already, would you most like to own? Any chance of that happening soon? 

The only thing that I can come up with that seems a little alluring in times like these is a very small self contained camping vehicle. Maybe something like this…

Something that is easier to drive than a huge motorhome. There is no chance of this happening soon or ever.

4. March is National Flour Month…are you a baker? Cookies-cakes-or pies…your favorite sweet treat to bake?

I like to bake cookies and cakes…not pies.

What’s the last non-sweet thing you made that called for flour? 

Potato pancakes.

5. There are 31 days in the month of March…where were you and what were you doing when you were 31? If you haven’t hit that milestone yet, then tell us where you were and what you were doing 31 months ago? (if math is not your thing, that would be August 3, 2018)

I’ve hit that milestone 2 times over. When I was 31 our two sons were 3 and 1. I was busy being a full time mother/homemaker. We were living in our second home in Huntington Beach, California. We lived around the corner from my sister Vera and her husband Nick. They also had two children who were 6 and 4. Lots of fun cousin times happened in Huntington Beach. We all attended the same church, Huntington Beach E.V. Free. Before I was a full-time mother/homemaker I was an elementary school teacher in the Montebello Unified School District east of Los Angeles.

This photo was taken at Forest Home Christian Camp in California. We signed up for a work weekend at the camp over Mother’s Day in 1982. We worked on various projects to get the camp ready for summer camping season. Dear’s folks came up and shared a Mother’s Day lunch that the camp provided on Sunday of the weekend. I am 31 in this photo.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Here’s a real lion. I took this photo at the zoo in Dallas, I think.

Relationship Building

It is so sweet to see the bond forming between sister and brother. Praying they can always be good friends and watch out for each other.

Addy kept her brother company until mommy was free. Sweet snuggles.

Today I found this book on our bookshelf and thought it would be fun to read it with Addy some time. The book is called First Steps For Little Feet in Gospel Paths.

I could not find that the book was copyrighted so I’m sharing some pages from the book.

Did you get the answers right? Smile. I have seen the moon sometimes during the day, have you?

Today is the last day of January 2020. Our yards are still snow covered at our house. Our streets are bare and clear.

Will you be watching the Superbowl game at your house with good eats? We don’t have plans yet.

Enjoy your weekend.

The Art of Flora Forager

Our friend Bridget, well known as Flora Forager is an artist who uses petals and other natural elements to create her works of art.

Last Thursday evening I drove to Seward Park Audubon Center in Seattle for a book release celebration for Bridget’s second book, The Art of Flora Forager.

Our family and her family have been dear friends since 1984 when Bridget was a toddler. These are Bridget’s sisters.

The Audubon Center was the perfect venue for the book launch party. They have had her artwork on display for a while and were thrilled to host this event. Both her editor from Sasquatch Books and the directors of the Audubon Center expressed their delight that Bridget is a local Seattle artist which gave them access to her and her work.

The walls were covered with her creative foraged work.

Bridget put together her head wreath in the same way she creates her artwork.

Some of the Audubon’s taxidermy birds were part of the event.

This redbreasted sapsucker died and was found by Bridget’s sister Lucy on her property and the Audubon Center asked her to bring it in so they could preserve the body and mount it for educational purposes.

This collage is a small example of some of Bridget’s work. When Bridget is out and about in nature by herself or with her three young sons, she’ll “grab anything and everything I fancy, put it into my foraging sack, and bring it home to play around with.”

Bridget photographs her own work, too.

She and her husband call their urban cottage The Burrow because it feels like a hobbit hole. Much of my days are spent foraging for wildflowers in green areas of Seattle and playing with flowers on my kitchen table.

“Many of my Flora Forager pieces have come from my own garden, those of my dear friends, and my mother’s luscious old-world roses that she still cares for, though they now tower over her head.”

Our family is happy that Bridget has found a beautiful way to express her creativity and the world is noticing and enjoying it, too. Congratulations Flora Forager!

To see more of Bridget’s work, visit or connect with her on Instagram @flora.forager.

I’ll link up with Eileen for Saturday’s Critters.

Bonhoeffer Quotes

For my Friday’s Fave Five hosted by Susanne at Living to Tell the Story this week I’m sharing 5 quotes from this biography on Bonhoeffer. I’m almost half way through it. It’s not a quick read book but one with so many things to consider along the way.

1. “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

2. “Bonhoeffer began to wonder whether he ought to pursue the life of a pastor rather than that of an academic. His father and brothers thought it would be a waste of his great intellect, but he often said that if one couldn’t communicate the most profound ideas about God and the Bible to children, something was amiss. There was more to life than academia.”

3. ” Only if we will venture to enter into the words of the Bible, as though in them this God were speaking to us who loves us and does not will to leave us alone with our questions, only so shall we learn to rejoice in the Bible…”

4. “The church has only one altar, the altar of the Almighty…before which all creatures must kneel. Whoever seeks something other than this must keep away, he cannot join us in the house of God…the church has only one pulpit, and from that pulpit, faith in God will be preached, and no other faith, and no other will than the will of God, however well-intentioned”

5. “A true leader must know the limitations of his authority.”

A bonus quote:

6. “If you board the wrong train, he said, it is no use running along the corridor in the opposite direction.”

These quotes of course are more powerful to read in context and considering the time period that Bonhoeffer lived in Germany. Bonhoeffer is eventually executed just weeks before the end of WWII.

Taken from the jacket of the book: “Bonhoeffer gives witness to one man’s extraordinary faith and to the tortured fate of the nation he sought to deliver from the curse of Naziism. It brings the reader face to face with a man determined to do the will of God radically, courageously, and joyfully – even to the point of death. Bonhoeffer is the story of a life framed by a passion for truth and a commitment to justice on behalf of those who face implacable evil.”

I highly recommend this book to all of you.

To a lighter subject…I’m looking forward to our weekend and spending time with Josh, Laura and Katie at the opening game of our Sounder’s soccer season and then next week Katie, Dear and I are traveling across the mountains for Katie to see her brother Dan’s new home. Good times together…

What’s happening in your part of the world? I’ll leave you with this photo I took today that promises me that Spring is on it’s way…

Susanne’s new button also says Spring is coming!

See What He Will Do…


About two years ago the Billy Graham Association was asking for email stories of how Billy Graham’s Evangelical Outreach had touched our lives. I sent in the story of my Pop’s conversion. Previously to this request, when our daughter was at Wheaton College in Illinois we were able to visit the Billy Graham Museum on campus. Emotions came to the surface when I saw the photos from the Los Angeles Crusade at the Coliseum in 1963. I knew my dad and I were somewhere in that photo of the stadium filled to overflowing.


I sent in my story hoping that Billy would hear and know that I thanked God for his devotion to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how it impacted my family.


What a thrill to get this book in the mail this past month, skimming through and seeing my story about Pop published.



I can hardly wait to show my Mom and Pop the book…

My parents are soon turning 86 and 85.

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I stored on their site from 2007-2015 hostage replacing them with ugly grey and black boxes and asking for a large ransom to retrieve them. It is a slow process to go through all my posts deleting the ugly boxes.

Katie on the Hobbit…


  • The Hobbit brings me back

A little girl, tucked into bed, Daddy reading confidently from a book with a soft green cover, always knowing what all the words meant and how to say them and how to shift his tone as he read for the dwarves, that mysterious wizard, and poor poor Mr. Baggins who was so imposed upon when they scratched his pretty green door, tramped into his house, and dragged him on an adventure. It was years before I would pick up “the sequel” Lord of the Rings that my Daddy said I needed to be older to read, in the three pretty red-bound volumes on that high shelf. I loved Tolkien’s world and I loved the bedtime ritual, stories from Daddy and songs from Mommy and all my stuffed animals tucked around me sleepy-eyed and relaxed as we dreamed of dragons and magic rings and floating down a river in barrels. Hmmm maybe I need to pick this one up again. 🙂

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I stored on their site from 2007-2015 hostage replacing them with ugly grey and black boxes and asking for a large ransom to retrieve them. It is a slow process to go through all my posts deleting the ugly boxes.

Welcome September!


I finished the 6th book in the Anne of Green Gables Novels last night and wanted to share this quote for the beginning of September.

“Well, that was life. Gladness and pain…hope and fear…and change. Always change! You could not help it. You had to let go of the old go and take the new to your heart…learn to love it and then let it go in turn. Spring, lovely as it was, must yield to summer and summer lose itself to autumn. The birth…the bridal…the death…”

~Anne of Ingleside, L.M. Montgomery.

After typing this quote my mind went straight to the great truth in this hymn and the verses in Philippians that follow…

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not;
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.


Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.


Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!


Philippians 3:12-16 (The Message)

“I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.

So let’s keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us. If any of you have something else in mind, something less than total commitment, God will clear your blurred vision—you’ll see it yet! Now that we’re on the right track, let’s stay on it.”

Things change, God doesn’t

We press on without fear.

We’ll make it to the end.

What a wonderful future we have in Christ.

The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter


I’ve really been enjoying this series by mystery writer Susan Wittig Albert. Beatrix Potter has been a favorite of mine for years and escaping into the Lake District with Beatrix and talking animals and mystery is a joy for me. I’ve finished the first two books in the series. Right now there are two more books already published.


I found the first book in the series at the Friend’s of the Library for 50 cents. I checked out the second book from the library. I’m going to have to request or get on a waiting list for the next ones, The Tale of Cuckoo Brow Wood and The Tale of Hawthorn House. If you like English village life, a blend of fact and fiction, and mystery, not to mention great animal characters you’ll love this series…

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Before Green Gables ~ Review

Before Green Gables

The Prequel to Anne of Green Gables

by Budge Wilson

I finished this wonderful book this week. If you are an Anne fan and have been skeptical of this book put your skepticism aside. You can enjoy Budge Wilson’s talent to bring Anne’s days before Green Gables alive, heartwarming, tear jerking, endearing Anne to us again. I love the other characters she weaves into the story during this time period in Anne’s life, too.

To see more Spring Reading Book Reviews click over to Callapidder Days.