Hope You Don’t Fidget Hodepodge

1. The sweetness of summer…where have you found it recently? If you’re in the Southern hemisphere, feel free to tell us about the sweetness you’re finding in winter.

When we have a group around our table enjoy each other I count it as sweetness.

2. Take your sweet time, sweet tooth, home sweet home, short but sweet, the sweet smell of success, sweet talk…choose a sweet idiom and tell us how it fits your life currently?

It would have to be Home Sweet Home. We’ve enjoyed being home alone and we’ve enjoyed overnight visitors in our home. I’m thankful to have a comfortable home where we can enjoy wide open spaces in our beautiful part of the country.

3. Sweet as honey, sweet as sugar, or sweet as pie, which phrase do you use when a sweet phrase is called for? What’s the last sweet treat you indulged in?

My mind keeps going back to Psalm 19:7-11. Dear and I have put this section of scripture to memory and recite it often. The Law of the Lord is Perfect. In verse 10 you find these words describing God’s teachings,  “Sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb” Do any of you remember ths song from ages ago?

The latest sweet I indulged in while typing this on Tuesday afternoon was a slice of this frozen dessert below. This dessert goes a long way. I made it for 10 people and we still have part of it in the freezer to enjoy a slice of in the evening. The shot above with our 2nd batch of summer company has the dessert pictured in front of each place ready to be eaten.

4. First thing that comes to mind when you hear the word fidget?

True confession: I fidget when someone is long winded or takes way to long to explain something. I don’t consider most sermons in the long winded category at all. I can listen to a good long sermon when someone is rightly dividing the Truth. Usually long winded to me is someone who talks way too long on stuff that isn’t the truth or when I can’t figure out the point they are trying to make.

5. Share with us one of your favorite childhood travel memories.

I can remember very little snippets of our travels to places to camp or pick fruit growing up. We did not travel much as a family especially after four more siblings were born after the original four. I was the youngest of the first 4. Camping was the highlight and camping at San Clemente State Beach was the ultimate camping experience for me (despite sunburns). What added to the adventure at San Clemente was the fact that the Grunion were running one of the nights we were there. It was so exciting to hear the yells, “the Grunion are running, the Grunion are running” and then to scramble and try to pick up the silvery fish and throw them in your bucket.  If you’ve never heard of Grunion click here.

The above photo is of my family camping at Big Bear California.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

My other memorable summer experience in Junior High and High School was being able to go to Hume Lake Christian Camps in King’s Canyon between the Sequoia and Sierra National Forest of central California. Go north to Fresno from Southern California and turn right. This is where for the first time I clearly heard that I was a sinner who needed to repent and follow Christ instead of myself. God called me at this camp and He helped me to respond to that calling.

Thank you to Joyce for asking the questions and thank you for taking the time to read the answers.

Summer Shop Progress

In the last couple of days we’ve had some progress on the shop roofing. Dear and our son Dan are getting the hang of the 20ft 7inch steel roof panels (50#’s each) and how to maneuver them up onto the structure. Underneath each panel is a reflective vapor barrier that they roll out and fasten before they put the steel panel up and screw it into the purlin.

Some encouragement for those who are called by God from Spurgeon and God’s Word…

It is impossible for any human speech to express the full meaning of this delightful phrase, “God is for me.” He was for us before the worlds were made. He was for us or He would not have given His well-beloved Son; He was for us when He smote the Only-begotten and laid the full weight of His wrath upon Him—He was for us, though He was against Him. He was “for us” when we were ruined in the Fall—He loved us notwithstanding all. He was for us when we were rebels against Him and with a high hand were bidding Him defiance. He was for us or He would not have brought us humbly to seek His face. He has been for us in many struggles; we have been summoned to encounter hosts of dangers; we have been assailed by temptations from without and within—how could we have remained unharmed to this hour if He had not been for us?   
~
Psalm 56:9-11 ~ Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me?

May v July DIY Project

In May of this year I took this photo. As you can see the paver section of our sitting area just below our back deck/porch is small.

In this July photo that I took on Monday it shows the space now after Dear added 40 more pavers. We still have enough pavers to make the space yet a little bigger. All the pavers were already on the property so this improvement is all labor with no cost to us except for sore muscles.

We’ve had a mild (cooler) and wetter start to summer this year and our plants are enjoying that.

Our California company arrived to our home safe and sound. We enjoyed a meal around the table and time throughout the evening catching up. Addy was thrilled to play with Avery, her “medium sized friend”.  Jaymison was very skeptical of Ryan and Jack, mostly of Ryan. He was okay with the medium sized Avery and even managed a smile at Michelle. Nary a photo was taken. Oye. Maybe I’ll remember today…

No Secrets Hodgepodge

What secrets lie behind that door?

1. The Hodgepodge lands this year on National Secret Keeping Day…on a scale of 1-10 (with 1 being I’m a blabbermouth and 10 being I’m a vault) how good are you at keeping secrets?

I’m going to say 8.

I can keep secrets but I will not listen to secrets people want me to keep from my husband except for surprises for him. 

There are secrets that are more detrimental than helpful. The truth is easier to deal with than secrets has been my mantra for years. I can deal with the truth but the imagination is hard to deal with. 

I read here nine jobs for people who can keep a secret-cybersecurity worker, executive assistant, housekeeper, lawyer, nuclear plant technician, physician, private investigator, psychologist, security guard  Of the jobs listed, which one most interests you and why?

I could be an executive assistant and I have been a housekeeper. The houses I cleaned never needed secret keeping. I did get called on occasion wondering if I saw the remotes or other things the homeowners found missing. I also found things in the cushions that they were missing. Sometimes I think I could have been a good detective…

2. What’s the secret of life (or one of them anyway)?

The Bible has the best prescriptions for life and they aren’t a secret. 

Psalm 16:11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. 

Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father but by Him. 

Today counts for eternity and life continues into eternity. Where will you spend it? There are only two choices heaven with God or Hell without Him. And the great news is you can start spending life with God right now. I pray He is calling you to live life with Him through the life and sacrifice that Jesus made for us. 

3. Off the record, best-kept secret, a fly on the wall, top secret, my lips are sealed, secret shopper, as quiet as a mouse, poker face, spill the beans, open secret, bite your tongue…which secret idiom can you best relate to right now? Explain.

Bite your tongue is the one I’ll choose. Don’t answer a fool according to his folly…

4. Spill here the secret ingredient in one of your favorite recipes?

This is a story about my dear mother. She had lots of great recipes that she had in her head not on paper. Our sister Vera worked hard getting those recipes recorded for all of us. Once when our mom visited us at our home in Kenmore she decided to make a large pot of her Borsch. When I was watching her she added something that was not in the recipe, a cube of butter. Maybe that was her secret. I don’t think I have any secret ingredients although sometimes I’ll add a little sugar to some sauces that I don’t publicize.

5. My mama celebrates a big birthday tomorrow. Share a favorite quote, song lyric, saying, or verse of scripture that will add some sunshine to her day (ours too!)

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

A very happy birthday to your dear mom!

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

Today July 8th is Dear’s only brother’s birthday and Terry is his only sibling. Dear is younger by 4 years. I made this collage to show the resemblance of each of the boys to their parents. I think Terry resembles my mother in law and that Dear resembles my father in law. Rex died in 1985 before our Katie was born and Verna died in 1997. Verna was very close to our daughter Katie. Dear’s brother’s family is living in North Carolina these days. The photo of Terry and my Dear was taken at my mother’s funeral in 2013.

Thank you to Joyce for asking the questions! Click here to see more answers.

Stars and Stripes Weekend

How cute are our little grands sporting their 4th of July matching outfits??

On the Fourth this year we gathered at Jamie’s Uncle’s home for a potluck barbecue. I didn’t take a photo of the salad I contributed but it was from our Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog and here’s the link. A refreshing summer Watermelon Cucumber Salad from Bev.

Before we left to the 4th of July gathering I worked on our backyard planters weeding. Our front planters need a lot of work still and I hope to get to them this week.

A walk about the yard taking photos of all the pretty things and weeds that are blooming.

Our day lilies are in their glory right now as is this Clematis.

After a wonderful 5th of July service at church honoring God and country we took a Sunday afternoon drive up Aladdin Road all the way to the Washington US Border with Canada. On the way back we took a side road to check out Deep Lake. I’m not able to upload the photos from this spur of the moment road trip yet.

We are expecting some out of state visitors this week. Looking forward to that. What is up in your corner of the world?

Best-Laid-Plans Hodgepodge

Dear and me at a courtyard on the campus of Magdalen College (pronounced Maudlin) in Oxford England. (July of 2014)

The phrase the best-laid plans is a translation of a Scottish proverb that was first published in 1786.

The best-laid plans refers to something that has gone awry, something that has not turned out as well as one had hoped. The expression the best-laid plans carries the connotation that one should not expect for things to always turn out to plan. Like many proverbs, the best-laid plans is usually quoted by itself, though it is not the full proverb. The full proverb is, the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry. This is a passage from the poem To a Mouse, written by the Scottish poet Robert Burns in 1786. The verse was translated into English, the original Scottish quotation is: The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley, / An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain, / For promised joy. Note that best-laid plans is spelled with a hyphen, as best-laid functions as an adjective before a noun. Laid is sometimes misspelled as layed, though layed is not a word. Laid is is the past tense and past participle tense of lay.

And now here are the Hodgepodge Questions on this first day of July!

1. Are you currently making plans of any kind? What kind? 

Currently I am making plans for getting things ready for some summer visitors arriving next week. 

What emotions are associated with the planning process? 

Excitement to be able to share our new environs with some loved ones who haven’t visited with us in our Country Bungalow before.

Tell us about one plan you had to cancel due to the current situation which shall remain nameless. Ha!

We had to cancel our trip to England scheduled for the middle of September. We are very pleased with the cancellation policy of Airbnb. They refunded us our money within an hour. We still need to call British Airways and try to get our money back for our flights. That was a big chunk of change and we hope to have good dealings with the airlines. As you can imagine they are swamped with phone calls. We were going to stay in Oxford. We are disappointed for sure. 

2. Last time you saw stars, either literally or figuratively?

Our country bungalow is in a part of town where there are no street lights and very few lights shine from neighboring properties so star gazing is something we can do most nights when we don’t have cloud cover. It really is amazing to see so many stars and to be able to pick out constellations.

3. Blueberries yay or nay? Blueberry pie, blueberry muffins, blueberry yogurt, blueberries by the handful…what’s your pleasure?

Yes to blueberries. I like them fresh picked by the handful. I also enjoy them thrown into a bowl of cereal/granola.

4. swim against the tide, swimming upstream, in the swim, sink or swim, makes your head swim…choose one of the ‘swim’ idioms listed and tell us how/why you relate?

In the current climate of our country I’m definitely swimming against the loudest tide. I know there is a quiet tide that I’d fit in with but it is being drowned out by all the angry noise.

5. Sum up your June in a single sentence.

A glorious time in June for family to be all together again.

Be happy in your mask! 

Start them young!

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

One of my favorites to quote in good times and bad times, C. H. Spurgeon:

“Visit good books but live in the Bible”

“Let us not fear the enemy until he actually comes, and then let us trust in the Lord.”

“Lord, help us in such a way that we may see that thou thyself art working. May we magnify thee in our inmost souls. Make all around us to see how good and great a God thou art.”

Thank you to Joyce for coming up with the Hodgepodge questions!

Not Blushing Hodgepodge

1. This time last year where were you?

On June 23rd of 2019 we were driving to church for our first summer service. Don’t know what we did the rest of that day.

2. In honor of National Pink Day (June 23rd) tell us your favorite pink food or beverage. Was it on the menu at your house yesterday?

Kensington Dream

In a shaker over ice add juice of 1/2 a lemon, 2 oz. Creme de Cassis, 1 oz. each Brandy and Amaretto. Shake well and pour into Goblet. Add about 4 oz. of champagne. Enjoy but don’t drink and drive! There’s a reason this drink is called “Dream”.

I’m taking the liberty to say this is a pink drink and it is my favorite and I’m enjoying one right now while I type out my answers for the “podge”.

Do you like to wear the color pink?

Yes, I do enjoy wearing pink. (fuschia)

Me and my sisters.

If we came to visit would we find this color in your home decor?

You would see some pink but only in dishes or figurines or fresh flowers and some pink in the play room, like this pink kitchen.

Blush-fuschia-salmon-raspberry-your favorite shade of pink?

I think I’ll go with Blush.

3. Stop and smell the roses, looking through rose colored glasses, a rose by any other name, not all moonlight and roses, no rose without a thorn…which rosy saying currently fits your life in some way? Explain.

no rose without a thorn…

To enjoy something pleasant like our acreage means we have to work hard to keep weeds under control and especially in the Spring and Summer we have to do a lot of mowing and weed wacking and weed pulling.

4. Are you a ‘reader’?

Yes.

Do you tend to read lighter books in the summer months?

I haven’t been reading any light books lately. When we take road trips we enjoy listening to books on CD, usually murder mysteries.

Do you have a summer reading list?

Not a list. The books I’m reading right now are the Bible,  a compilation of works by Spurgeon, a commentary on 1 Corinthians, Strange Fire by John MacArthur.

If so, give us a title or two.

For lighter reading I love going back to some Children’s Classics like Narnia books by C.S. Lewis, The Wind in the Willows, and Anne of Green Gables.

5. Share with us one rose and one thorn from your weekend.

The rose was having time with our grandchildren and honoring Fathers. The thorn was the evil narrative going on in our nation.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

We have lots of Columbine that we did not plant and they come up every year with no help from us. They are always a great surprise. 

Thank you to Joyce who comes up with the questions for us to answer.

People Get Ready Hodgepodge

1. Saturday marks the first official day of summer! Whoohoo! Your favorite thing about the season?

Summer visitors. The photos below were taken in our front yard when we had summer visitors camping out last August. 

2. Love it!, labor of love, not for love or money, no love lost, love handles, love does, love-hate relationship, misery loves company, tough love, love will find a way…pick one and tell us how it applies to your life right now.

I’ll pick LOVE-IT. Love it when family visits. Love it when we can visit our family. Love it when I spend time with the grandchildren and see all their new skills. Love it when our freedoms come back to us. Love it when all the birds flit about in our back yard. Love it when the Truth is spoken and it is louder than evil. 

3. What’s one thing currently causing you to seethe?

When people call evil good and good evil. 

Woe to those who call evil good
    and good evil,
who put darkness for light
    and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet
    and sweet for bitter!

Isaiah 5:20 (ESV)

One thing currently making you smile?

See #2

4. Of the following to-dos found on a summer checklist (here) which three would definitely make your personal list of summer want-to-dos?

roast marshmallows over a fire, go berry or peach picking, dangle your feet off the end of a dock, sit on a porch swing, watch the sunset from a beach, nap in a hammock, go barefoot in the grass, collect seashells, play tennis, go fishing, build a sandcastle, catch fireflies, eat a soft serve ice cream cone, make a pitcher of Sangria, swim in a lake, stargaze, ride a bike, paddle a canoe or kayak, make a summer road trip, throw a frisbee

  1. Take a summer road trip. 2. Make a pitcher of Sangria. 3. Paddle a canoe or kayak (although it is getting more and more difficult to get into or out of)

    Do you make an actual list? NO

5. Thursday is National Splurge Day. What might you splurge on in order to celebrate?

Well, since Thursday will be mow the 4 acres day I will celebrate by listening to at least 3 good sermons since that’s how long it takes for me to mow. Maybe to keep the theme going we’ll go out to eat in one of the local restaurants that have re-opened.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

A summary of a good sermon in 5 sentences:

“You can’t change a fallen world. We come and go and are forgotten. The only one who can change the world is God. MY story is not THE story. We need to fear God and keep His commandments.”

By the Fear of the Lord men depart from evil. Proverbs 16:6

Thank you to Joyce for coming up with the questions for the Hodgepodge.