Missing Pieces

It’s an interesting phenomena but when the weather is blustery our internet goes into hiding somewhere.

Since I can’t upload the photos I wanted for a post today I’ll go back and post these photos that I uploaded on kinder internet days that I haven’t shared yet. Easter Decor was at a minimum during this Pandemic. Easter was celebrated well but not with decor.

Христос воскрес! Khristos voskrese! Christ is Risen!

воистину воскрес! Voistinu Voskrese! Truly He is Risen!

Our Easter message will always be that Christ is Risen, He is Risen Indeed in English and Russian!

The cutest little Easter Bunny. The photos our daughter in law shares on Facebook upload with no trouble.

Addy painting our presents for Easter, rocks for our gardens.

Jaymison coming back from the family evening walk down the driveway and back again. I can’t get over how big he looks here!

Still trying to upload my camera photos to no avail. Today I took photos of all that is starting to bloom at our Country Bungalow but the uploads failed. I will keep trying.

Monday we worked outside for most of the day. Dear worked on the shop and I pulled weeds and mowed the front acre. Tuesday I’ll mow the back acres while Dear continues working on the shop. The forecast is for a 70 degree day. Time will tell. How are things in your corner?

Cinco de Mayo lands on this Tuesday and our favorite Mexican Restaurant isn’t open for service inside yet. What an COVID-19 mishap! We won’t be having tacos today or Mexican food for that matter. Once El Ranchito is open again we will celebrate!

Quote of the week from Sunday’s sermon: “Sincerity is not the test of obedience.”

Labors of Love

L is the letter for the day and my bandwith is low, low, low so I can’t upload any new photos right now. I’ll have to look to my archives and decide on a subject for the letter L. I chose my Labors of Love post from 2016.

I love Easter and all that it holds and all that it means. I like the idea of new Life, a resurrected Life. The greatest Love that was demonstrated on Good Friday and the Life that was resurrected on Easter Sunday.

Here are photos of our Easter weekend labors of love and celebrations 2016.

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This was the end result of our labors on Easter Saturday 2016. Top left an Russian Easter sweet cheese spread called Seernaya Paska. The X and the B stand for Christ is Risen. On the right is the finished and frosted Russian Easter Bread called Kulich or Paska surrounded by Russian shrink wrapped eggs. The sign in Russian on the bottom left says Christ is Risen so you see where the X and B comes from.  Now I’ll show you some of the process of getting here.

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First you gather your labor force. This is my sister Lana who arrived early so that we could get the Russian Easter Bread (Kulich/Paska) started.

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The rest of the laborers arrived and donned their aprons and head scarves.

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At one point in the process of mixing the dough I thought I made a big boo boo so we prayed over the dough and Lana and I laid hands on the KitchenAid.  I didn’t want to start over again. All turned out well…

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Lana showing how her slippers match her apron.

The other photos in the collage are of kneading the dough and shrink wrapping the boiled eggs. While the dough was rising we enjoyed lunch together. Home made tamales and beans with guacamole, chips, and Dan and Jamie’s home made salsa.

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After lunch it was time to prepare the cans and to punch down the dough after it’s first rise. The Peter Rabbit bunting was completed by Katie and hung by Laura and Katie. Josh and Laura gifted me the bunting kit for my birthday last week.

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After the second rise we punched again and prepared the dough by hand for the cans pinching off enough or almost enough for each can we picked for this time around. Short, medium and tall.

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The guys were busy outside in the sunshine solving several world problems.

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The finished eggs and kulich on Easter day. I’ll show more from our Easter table in another post.

When the baking was done and the cheese mold was in the refrigerator setting up for our Easter Sunday meal the kids went out to dinner with their aunt and uncle. Dear and I stayed at home and crashed…

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All of our kids together enjoying each other and extended family fills us with joy and not having to make dinner for them after a full day in the kitchen was a bonus!

We love and treasure these traditions and hope to carry them on through the years and pass them on to the next generation. I’m happy to report three of our nephews wives took on this labor of love alone in their homes and had very successful outcomes!

Easter 2020 ~ Christ is Risen!

Christ Is Risen!

Truly He is Risen!

Khristos voskrese!    Voistinu voskrese!

Христос воскрес!
воистину воскрес!

Blessings to all on this Glorious Easter Day!

Near the Cross

Jesus, keep me near the cross,
There a precious fountain
Free to all, a healing stream
Flows from Calvary’s mountain.

Refrain

In the cross, in the cross,
Be my glory ever;
Till my raptured soul shall find
Rest beyond the river.

Near the cross, a trembling soul,
Love and mercy found me;
There the bright and morning star
Sheds its beams around me.

Refrain

Near the cross! O Lamb of God,
Bring its scenes before me;
Help me walk from day to day,
With its shadows o’er me.

Refrain

Near the cross I’ll watch and wait
Hoping, trusting ever,
Till I reach the golden strand,
Just beyond the river.

Refrain

Words: Fanny Crosby

Jesus Christ

We are on the letter J and Jesus Christ is the best choice for me to create a post on this Easter Weekend.

The Old Rugged Cross

On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
The emblem of suffering and shame;
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain.

Refrain

So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown.

O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world,
Has a wondrous attraction for me;
For the dear Lamb of God left His glory above
To bear it to dark Calvary.

Refrain

In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
A wondrous beauty I see,
For ’twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died,
To pardon and sanctify me.

Refrain

To the old rugged cross I will ever be true;
Its shame and reproach gladly bear;
Then He’ll call me some day to my home far away,
Where His glory forever I’ll share.

Thinking of all our friends and family who will be celebrating alone on this Easter 2020. May God draw you to a closer relationship with Him. Praying that God will wipe out this virus soon so we can meet together again.

Important Events ~ Good Friday

We are on the letter I and I’m choosing Important for my theme. This is an important weekend in the history of Christianity. Today we remember Good Friday, the day Jesus was crucified on a cross and when he breathed His last was laid in a tomb.

Were the angels looking down from heaven to see all that would transpire?

Growing up there were Good Fridays when we would fast on that day until our church service in the evening with Communion breaking our fast and then having a meal together.

We will miss being able to attend Good Friday services this year but that will not stop us from our reading and contemplating the importance of this event in history and it’s importance today and in our future.

And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My Godmy God, why have you forsaken me?”
From Matthew 27:

The Death of Jesus

45 Now from the sixth hour[f] there was darkness over all the land[g] until the ninth hour.[h] 46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 47 And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “This man is calling Elijah.” 48 And one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink. 49 But the others said, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him.” 50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.

51 And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. 52 The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53 and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 54 When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son[i] of God!”

55 There were also many women there, looking on from a distance, who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to him, 56 among whom were Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Joseph and the mother of the sons of Zebedee.

Jesus Is Buried

57 When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. 58 He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered it to be given to him. 59 And Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud 60 and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had cut in the rock. And he rolled a great stone to the entrance of the tomb and went away. 61 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were there, sitting opposite the tomb.

The Guard at the Tomb

62 The next day, that is, after the day of Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate 63 and said, “Sir, we remember how that impostor said, while he was still alive, ‘After three days I will rise.’ 64 Therefore order the tomb to be made secure until the third day, lest his disciples go and steal him away and tell the people, ‘He has risen from the dead,’ and the last fraud will be worse than the first.” 65 Pilate said to them, “You have a guard[j] of soldiers. Go, make it as secure as you can.” 66 So they went and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone and setting a guard.

Tomorrow for the letter J my post will be about Jesus and His resurrection including photos from Easters past.

Wednesday Hodgepodge ~A Homey Easter

For A to Z challenge and the letter G scroll down below Wednesday Hodgepodge!

1. How will you celebrate Easter this year?

This will probably be the first Easter in my whole life that I will not be inside a church building celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ with other Believers in a jammed packed auditorium.

This year Dear and I will enjoy our church service online. We plan on delivering Easter goodies around town beginning with our kids and grandchildren staying at a safe distance. We won’t have our traditional meal of lamb or our wonderful Easter Bread (Paska/Kulich) or the delicious cheese spread, Seernaya Paska. Sigh…

My dining room table will not be set for a crowd.

2. Is it easier for you to receive grace offered or extend grace to another? Explain.

Definitely easier to give than to receive. It is a humbling experience to receive grace, to be forgiven. Pride likes to rear it’s ugly head. It’s easier for me to help than to be helped. Sometimes we are laid low and we can learn the lesson of humility in having to receive instead of being able to give.

Acts 20:35

35 In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

3. Do you say grace before meals? If so do you have a standard dinnertime grace or is it more ‘off the cuff’ ? Do you say grace when dining out? Do you have a favorite grace? Any special memory associated with ‘saying grace’?

We say grace when we have family around the table. When it’s just Dear and me we usually will say “Thank you Lord for this food!” Our grace changes as the season warrants. If we are having a meal around someone’s birthday we’ll include thanksgiving for them and what they mean to us. We always end our prayers with, In Jesus Name we pray, amen. Sometimes we say grace when dining out but not always. Lately Addy has been interested in saying grace and those are memorable. Our dear Pop’s prayers at special gatherings are very memorable as well.

Our father shared in this video that our mother thought this might be the last year they’d be having Christmas together and that did come to pass as she was ushered into heaven in September of 2013, on their 70th Wedding Anniversary. Our Pop followed our Mom to heaven in June of 2018.

4. What are some challenges you think the next generation will face? (Generation Alpha-born between 2011 and 2025)

Generation Alpha will have a very hard time honoring the purpose for which God created Man, Woman, Sex, Marriage and Family because of the twisted deconstructing of family and marriage that this world is legislating and forcing on us now. Like generations before they will be duped into believing it’s okay to kill a baby in the womb.  May God have mercy on us all.

5. Share a favorite quote or lyric featuring the word faith.

Current favorite quote about faith:

Faith is not a power which you possess to create your own future. Faith is a God-given ability to trust the future that God has promised you. ~ John MacArthur

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

My sister Lana recorded our Dear Pop answering some questions about prayer and fasting. Note: Our pop has a familiarity with the disciples. He calls John, Jack and Jacob and it might be in this video where he calls Peter, Pete.  Our Pop wasn’t perfect by any means but he knew what was important and that his righteousness came from Jesus.

Thank you to Joyce for posing the questions and thank you to all of you who visited my post. The link to the Hodgepodge is HERE.

Favorites

Today is the letter F and it took a while to settle on a theme or a word starting with F. How about Favorites from Easter’s Past or Flashbacks from Easter Past. These photos were from a cooking class the Mennonite Girls Can Cook taught at Lepp Farm Market in Abbotsford, British Columbia in 2014. The class was for Mennonite Heritage (Russian/Ukrainian) foods we enjoy at Easter especially Paska (Kulich-Russian Easter Bread), Seernaya Paska (Sweet Cheese Spread for the Paska) and other Mennonite foods.

Paska (Kulich) a very traditional Russian/Ukrainian Easter bread that is frosted and sprinkled!

Our daughter Katie traveled with me to Canada for this cooking class and took most of the photos during the class. This will be an Easter where our family does not gather to bake Russian Easter Bread together.

This is what our family’s Easter bread looks like. We bake the bread in old coffee cans we’ve saved from years past.

And here’s a flashback to the fifties, a family photo in our Easter finery. I’m in yellow with my classic Buster Brown haircut!

Back to the present. Today is Tuesday April 7, 2020. Yesterday I started the process to try to make a couple face masks. Pray for me because sewing has gotten me into so much trouble in my past. I was sent to detention in 7th grade because of something I said to my sewing teacher. OYE! My sisters are more talented in the art of sewing than me. My mother was a great seamstress, too. Me…not so much! I hope I can finish a mask today!!

Elastic is so hard to come by these days and look what I found in my sewing bin! A new package of the right kind of elastic for making masks!

I can’t remember why we bought this sewing machine but there it is and here I am hoping the threading is right and the tension is right and the stitching will go without the bobbin thread getting all backed up, etc. etc.

But…look at my delightful fabric that I’ve kept in my sewing bin for over 40 years now! Our firstborn’s room was themed after Peter Rabbit/Beatrix Potter and I bought this fabric thinking I’d sew curtains or something. Now I’ll be able to use it for Covid19 masks!! Who would have fathomed!

Forging Forward full of faith forever founded in Father God the author and finisher of our faith!

Looking forward to fun family and friend fellowship in the future!!

Do you sew? I’m sending my excess elastic to my sister Vera who has received requests for her to sew face masks for them. Eeek but now I have to make sure and finish a mask before I head to the Post office to mail that elastic to her!

Happy Tuesday y’all!

Easter Week

We are on the letter E for the A to Z Challenge and my choice for the letter E is Easter Week.

This Easter Week will go down in history as the Corona Virus Holy Week of 2020!

Our church will be celebrating Easter together in the flesh once the Stay at Home orders are lifted, sometime in the summer. We will have an online celebration this coming Sunday, on Easter.

Part of Easter Week (Holy Week) is Maundy Thursday, The Last Supper and the Washing of the Disciples Feet.

The Last Supper and the Washing of the Disciples Feet are both remarkable events.

While in Milan in March of 2013 I was able to see Leonardo da Vinci’s mural of the Last Supper. The original mural is on a wall of the refectory (dining hall) in the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan, Italy. No photos allowed.

Dear and I were in England in 2014 and we saw two amazing paintings of the last supper, one in the Parish Church of St. John the Baptist in Windsor and one in the chapel of Magdalen College, Oxford.

The Thames 104 - Copy - CopyFrom the Lectern, look down the centre aisle and observe in the West Gallery a painting of The Last Supper. This is a national treasure. The picture was originally presented to the Royal Chapel c. 1660 by Brian Duppa, Bishop of Winchester, Prelate of the Order of the Garter. It was “bought by him beyond the sea”. Another tradition ascribes it to Franz de Cleyn (1588-1658), Rostock, Mecklenburg, Court painter to James I. It was rolled up and buried “in the plumery” (plumbers workshop?) in the Great Rebellion. It hung over the altar at St George’s, Windsor in 1702, and can be seen there in Sandby’s drawing dated 1786.

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Oxford Day 6 141Above the stalls in the chapel hangs Giampetrino’s remarkable 15th copy of Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper, on permanent loan from the Royal Academy. In view of the bad condition of the original fresco in Milan, Magdalen’s copy on canvas is a piece of increasing historic and artistic significance.

Oxford Day 6 144This next sculpture of Jesus washing Peter’s feet is at the Gardens of the World in Thousand Oaks, California.

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Excerpts from John chapter 13…

It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.

Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God;  so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.  After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them.  “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am.  Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.  I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Thinking of all my friends and family during this time of “Social Distancing”. Hoping you all are holding up under this time of unrest. It’s a good time to heed Jesus’ words and love one another and care for one another and wash one another’s feet.

This song is one that our Russian Community sings at funerals but it is a song with words that are relevant in this time of being apart. I am looking forward to that time “till we meet again”.

The Donkey ~

Today we are on the letter D and I chose Donkey for the challenge.

Tomorrow is Palm Sunday and for probably the first time ever we won’t be gathering in our churches to wave the palms and celebrate Jesus Christ’s Triumphal entry into Jerusalem. We will be having our virtual gatherings and I’m thankful that we have this way to meet together.

So, why the donkey you might ask if you aren’t familiar with the history around Easter? Here are the passages from the Bible in the 4 gospels of this time in history.

From Matthew 21:

The Triumphal Entry

21 Now when they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, to the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will send them at once.” This took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying,

“Say to the daughter of Zion,
‘Behold, your king is coming to you,
    humble, and mounted on a donkey,
    on a colt,[a] the foal of a beast of burden.’”

The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them. Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” 10 And when he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up, saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the crowds said, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth of Galilee.”

From Mark 11:

The Triumphal Entry

11 Now when they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus[a] sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately as you enter it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Untie it and bring it. If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord has need of it and will send it back here immediately.’” And they went away and found a colt tied at a door outside in the street, and they untied it. And some of those standing there said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” And they told them what Jesus had said, and they let them go. And they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it, and he sat on it. And many spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields. And those who went before and those who followed were shouting, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! 10 Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest!”

11 And he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple. And when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.

From Luke 19:

The Triumphal Entry

28 And when he had said these things, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 When he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount that is called Olivet, he sent two of the disciples, 30 saying, “Go into the village in front of you, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you shall say this: ‘The Lord has need of it.’” 32 So those who were sent went away and found it just as he had told them. 33 And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, “Why are you untying the colt?” 34 And they said, “The Lord has need of it.” 35 And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 36 And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. 37 As he was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, 38 saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” 39 And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” 40 He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.”

John 12:

The Triumphal Entry

12 The next day the large crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. 13 So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!” 14 And Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, just as it is written,

15 “Fear not, daughter of Zion;
behold, your king is coming,
    sitting on a donkey’s colt!”

16 His disciples did not understand these things at first, but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written about him and had been done to him. 17 The crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to bear witness. 18 The reason why the crowd went to meet him was that they heard he had done this sign. 19 So the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the world has gone after him.”

These donkeys live on a property on the way to our kids’ home. I always enjoy seeing them as we drive by. I took these photos with my phone camera so they aren’t the best.

Today I’m participating in a day of fasting and prayer about COVID-19 put together by the Gospel Coalition with an hour long gathering via youtube or facebook at 4-5pm Pacific time.

With thanks to GretchenJoanna who left this G.K. Chesterton poem in the comments I’m copying and pasting it here:

THE DONKEY

When fishes flew and forests walked
And figs grew upon thorn,
Some moment when the moon was blood
Then surely I was born.

With monstrous head and sickening cry
And ears like errant wings,
The devil’s walking parody
On all four-footed things.

The tattered outlaw of the earth,
Of ancient crooked will;
Starve, scourge, deride me: I am dumb,
I keep my secret still.

Fools! For I also had my hour;
One far fierce hour and sweet:
There was a shout about my ears,
And palms before my feet.

-G. K. Chesterton

The First Hunt!

Tuesdays With Moisi will continue next week, Lord willing.

Today I’m starting with Easter and then I’ll go back to last Tuesday when our new grandson was born. After a glorious Easter Service we went home to grill some lamb and make some scalloped potatoes to take to our kids house for an Easter meal. Our DIL’s mother and granny added a salad, deviled eggs and dessert for our meal. It was casual working around a newborn’s eating schedule and Addy’s nap.

Once Addy was fully awake she hunted eggs and easter treats to put in her basket. Warning: Photo overload.

We first had an inside hunt.

Then we went outside for a hunt since the weather was fabulous.

Patiently waiting for all the adults to come outside to watch.

Jaymison was oblivious to all the fun.