What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Friday, November 27, 2020

I Forgot This Was Friday! Happy Day After Thanksgiving!

 Hey everyone! Happy day after Thanksgiving! I guess I totally forgot today was Friday, and I should have posted some pictures! I got busy cleaning up after yesterday's feast, and totally forgot all about posting and/or reading anyone else's posts. So I have some catching up to do as soon as I finish writing here now!  Normally on the day after Thanksgiving I am too lazy to start putting away all the Thanksgiving decorations, and I try to make it last just a little longer. (You can read more about that here if you want to)  But today I was ready to take it all down and get it cleaned up so I can start decorating for Christmas. I know many of you have already started your Christmas decorating, but I just can't handle more than one holiday at a time, so I've been waiting. Now I am ready to get started! It seems like the fall decorations were up forever...(they were...since September!!) Now I am tired of seeing orange and gold and brown...I'm ready for some reds and greens and all things Christmassy!  However, first, let me share a little about our Thanksgiving for those of you who don't read my Facebook page.

Thanksgiving morning dawned bright and beautiful:


The night before Thanksgiving and all through the house, a creature was stirring, and it wasn't a mouse...
There was our son Scott, busily baking my mother's famous Orange Cookie recipe. It's a family tradition whenever the family is coming for any event, my mother would always bake a batch of Orange Cookies for the grandchildren to enjoy. Of course, the big children enjoyed them as well! Here is a link to a previous post about that, and it will lead you to another link with the recipe. (In case you are interested).


Time to taste test them...


Here's hubby to do the honors, and he pronounced them "very good".


Meanwhile, I had already baked my pumpkin pies and they were ready and waiting for the hungry crowd the next day:


And the "Adult Table" was almost set. I decided to use paper and plastic this year due to the Covid situation. I figured the less opportunity to spread something the better, and less time having to clean up too. Everyone else seemed to appreciate that as well.


This was the "Kids' Table", but all our "kids" are pretty big now. I used the placemats that my mother had made for my family when our children were very young. 


So back to Thanksgiving morning...it was such a pretty morning I decided to sit out on the back porch and snap beans and enjoy the beauty of Still Waters Pond:


Here's me, snapping away. Obviously this is before I was appropriately "dressed for dinner".


Once the family began to arrive, my niece set up this beautiful Vegie Turkey Tray! Isn't he cute? And healthy too!


She also brought this sculptured Butter Turkey...he was too cute to cut, but we did anyway:


Now, here's the "Adult Table" in full action:


And here's the "Kids' Table", with the "kids" having a good time...
One of these "kids" is the mother of two of these kids...and the other "kid" is my baby! Can you figure that out?


Back to the "Adult Table", which is debatable...I had to sit down and get my picture taken too, next to my sister. Please don't say we look like twins. We aren't. She's my "Little BIG Sister", and I'm her "Big Little Sister", because I'm about 5 inches taller than she is but she is my petite big sister.


Time for the family photos:


My niece and her family. Now you know which "kids" belong to her! They were acting up as usual.


Oh, and here my sister is taking a picture of me:


And this is the picture she took:


And here I am taking a picture of her!


Here's our sweet kids...Benton and Rose. I still call them "the newlyweds"...they just celebrated 3 years of marriage a couple of weeks ago!



And here is The Steiner Clan, and we've included our daughter in law's sister Sherrie. I said she is our new "Adopted daughter".  


And here we are: The two "Mursch Girls"
Doris and Pam.


After the rest of the gang left our "kids" stayed outside until dark, playing "corn hole"


And then the sun went down.


And we stop and "Give Thanks" for all the Lord has done for us. Amen.



So, "that's a wrap"... Thanksgiving is technically over...but not the thankfulness!
I trust you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, regardless of how big or small your group may have been. We stuck to just my sister's and my immediate families, people that we each were comfortable being around and felt safe to do so. It was a wonderful time to celebrate getting through a long difficult year. So thankful our families have been safe, healthy, and have stayed employed. God has been so very gracious unto us and we are most grateful.  We definitely are counting our blessings and give thanks to God for all that He has done for us.  

And now we prepare our hearts for Advent and the celebration of the birth of Christ, the Savior of the world!  I will start my Advent/Christmas posts this weekend.  

Psalm 145:3-9

3.  "Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised;
And His greatness is unsearchable.
4.  One generation shall praise Your works to another, 
and shall declare Your mighty acts.
5.  I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
and on Your wondrous works.
6.  Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts,
and I will declare Your greatness.
7.  They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness,
And shall sing of Your righteousness.
8.  The Lord is gracious and full of compassion,
Slow to anger and great in mercy.
9.  The Lord is good to all,
and His tender mercies are over all His works."


Until next time, stay safe...but don't forget to spread the love of Jesus to everyone you meet. That is one thing that ought to be "contagious" because it could heal the pain and sorrow of the whole world. God bless you all, and good night.



Thursday, November 26, 2020

Have a Blessed Thanksgiving Day


I am so very sorry to start this Thanksgiving Day with a sad note, but wanted to let those of you who have been following Barbara and Tom Mims' story, here is a link to Barbara's post that she wrote just a few minutes ago:

 https://sweetteaandsandals.blogspot.com/2020/11/a-temporary-goodbye.html

I am very much in shock as to how quickly this all happened, and it certainly goes to show us that we need to always be ready to meet the Lord, for none of us are guaranteed tomorrow.  Please keep Barbara and her beautiful family in your thoughts and prayers today and in the coming weeks. And let us also rejoice in the fact that, as Barbara so poignantly wrote in her post, this is just a "Temporary Goodbye".

I hope that you all have a blessed and  beautiful Thanksgiving Day. I know many are not able to be with their loved ones today, but even from a distance, you can express your love and "thanksgiving" for one another.  I am so very aware of just how precious those expressions are, and once the loved one is no longer with us we can't do that anymore...so let us take that opportunity to "reach out and touch someone" with our love today.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.







Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Wednesday Treasures ~ And a Prayer Request

 

I started to publish this post last night, and then when I went over to my Facebook page I saw this announcement from our dear friend Barbara at Sweet Tea and Sandals:

"Tom Mims is being transferred to hospice care tomorrow. All of our children and grandchildren are en route now. Pray for sweet times together. Visits will be severely limited due to COVID restrictions. Pray we have more time with my Beloved, the love of my life. Holding on to Joshua 1:9, "Be strong and courageous. Do not fear for God is with [me]."

To say I am in shock would be an understatement. We've been following the story of Barbara's "Beloved" Tom for the past three weeks, as he has been in ICU with COVID, but the hope was, until last night apparently, that he was getting better and would soon be transferred to a different hospital that specializes in lung care until he could go home.  However, after reading Barbara's post in her blog (highlighted above), his lungs are in very bad shape and it seems as though Hospice is the best option for him at this time.  My heart is breaking for them and for their family. This picture was taken of them when they came to visit us in our new home last fall. They so graciously brought us some storage totes that they no longer needed after their big move the previous summer into their new home about an hour away from us. We had such a great visit with them. Such gracious and loving people. Tom celebrated his 70th birthday this past Sunday, and their 50th wedding anniversary is upcoming in December. Please keep Barbara and Tom and family in your thoughts and prayers during this very difficult time.  


After that news I really wasn't sure if I wanted to continue my regular post.  But since it was already written, and perhaps we all need some beauty and joy in our hearts right at this moment, I will go ahead as planned...but my heart is truly heavy this morning as I prepare this.  Here is what I had already written last night:

I hope you don't mind if I share a few more pictures of the Robins and Cedar Waxwings in the holly tree. They are still diligently at it, eating every berry in sight. I believe the tree will be bare by Thanksgiving Day! I can't imagine how they can eat so many berries in such a short amount of time, but there are a lot of birds and they just keep flying in and out all day long.  It has been fascinating to watch. The only downside is they like to fly back to the big oak trees in our front yard and sit there until they are ready to fly back to the holly tree for more berries. While they are in the oak tree, they are right over top of our car, and you can imagine what they are doing to our car while they sit up above...yes...so we have had to park our car in a different location until they are gone! What a mess! We had to take the car to the car wash yesterday morning.

So enjoy these pictures of the birds while I look for something else to share with you for my Wednesday Treasures:


Look at that face!  I think he sees me!


This Cedar Waxwing is doing some fancy acrobatics, hanging sideways on the branch and apparently he is flexing his wing out to give him balance as he picks the berries of the branch.

Now he's a little more upright and in better position.

There aren't as many of the Cedar Waxwings as the Robins, so I am thrilled when I can get a picture of one.

These two robins seem to be working very closely. Maybe they are related.

And this lone Robin sat there looking out over Still Waters Pond for a long time. I think he was contemplating where to go from here. Maybe calculating how far they will have to travel to get to the next big holly tree when this one runs out of berries!

Okay, I found some interesting things, but these aren't my treasures. However, they are vintage treasures from the past. We went out for lunch with some friends after church on Sunday to a different place than where we normally go. This place is a little further down the road, and we've been there before, but they recently changed owners and the new folks have cleaned it up a bit and made it more interesting. I enjoyed walking around taking pictures of some of the things they have sitting around.  Maybe you will like them too:

The new owner has been buying mismatched vintage dishes from the thrift stores and using them for their dinnerware. This pretty little Johnson Brothers saucer was used for our bread.

Here's the pattern/name in case you are interested! I loved it!

They are starting to sell more gift items. I love this vintage gas stove they are using for display:


And this vintage General Electric refrigerator reminds me of the one my parents had when I was growing up. I can remember learning how to defrost the freezer! I was so happy when, for my parents' 30th wedding anniversary, we four kids went together and bought them a new frost-free refrigerator! It was harvest gold, in keeping with the times. 30 years later, for their 60th wedding anniversary, we bought them another one, this time it was a lovely almond color. That one lasted them the rest of their lives as my mother passed away around their 64th anniversary and my dad lived five years longer. I believe we sold it with their house.  Anyway, I digress....let's keep moving on before I get too nostalgic.


I went into the ladies' room, and look what they had!

Thankfully, that wasn't all they had, but I thought, gee! I could've used that last week while waiting for them to come clean out our septic tank...which they did finally do by the way, thank the Lord!!

Also they had this granite ware in the ladies' room, sitting on top of a enamel topped "Hoosier Table"

This is the label that is still on the table. My Hoosier Cupboard originally had a label like that too, but it had been painted over so many times that it kind of dissolved when I stripped the cupboard to refinish it. I always wished I could find another label to put on my cupboard, and I must admit I was tempted  to "borrow this", but I knew better.  Maybe I will print a copy of it and glue it on my cupboard. That would be okay, wouldn't it? LOL.

Gee, I wish I'd known! I could have brought my laundry and washed my clothes while we dined! LOL. How many of you remember using a wringer washer? I know my mother had one on the farm in PA., but when we moved to Florida in 1956 we got an automatic washing machine. It was still a few years before we got a dryer, however, so clothes were always hung on the line. They smelled so good!


Now if you get bored you can always take a little ride around on the tricycle, or in the cute little kiddie car! Hard to believe we were ever small enough to ride in such a thing!

Now, someone tell me. Is this a chamber pot, or just a pretty casserole?

I thought maybe since it was in the hutch it was a casserole or soup tureen? Maybe, maybe not.


They had a lot of old photographs from the little community that used to be where this place was. It's long gone now, but apparently at one time it was a "thriving" little town.

When you step up on the front porch of the restaurant, "Pappy" wants to tell your fortune. He seems to be better at cracking funny jokes and insulting people in a fun way. 

Here is the restaurant: Hog Wild Country Cafe'.  They have great BBQ. Right now they just do lunch and supper. I wish they had breakfast too.  Just seems like it is a breakfast kind of place.  Anyway, we had a good time, and enjoyed seeing all the fun memorabilia. There's much much more to see, but these struck my fancy this time. Maybe next time I go I'll show you the rest of it!

So now I am getting ready for Thanksgiving. Started doing some housecleaning today (writing on Tuesday) and will finish that up tomorrow. (Wed.)  I have a friend actually coming over to help me a little bit. She does house cleaning for a living and needs some work right now, and I need some help with some things so it sounds like a win win to me.  Then I will get busy and bake the pumpkin pies and start getting other things ready to cook Thursday morning. My sweet daughter in love is cooking the turkey at their house and will bring it here when ready! What a blessing to have our children living near by. And as of this moment, my sister and her immediate family will be coming to join us for dinner. If the weather is nice enough, we may just dine outside on the porch, to help keep the fresh air flowing around us. Pray that everyone stays safe and healthy. That is our biggest concern for this day.

I hope that you and yours will have a blessed and Happy Thanksgiving. No matter how big or small our gatherings may be, let us take this opportunity to truly thank the Lord for bringing us safely through this year and all that it has involved. And for those who have had illness or even may be fighting it right now, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family, praying that the Lord will give you strength to keep going and the peace to know that God is with you and will never let you go. (Praying especially for Barbara and Tom Mims, and also some of our other blogging friends who have also been diagnosed recently with Covid.) If we've learned anything lately, it is that this illness/virus is truly a serious and vicious foe that is not to be toyed with. 

The 23rd Psalm seems to be the most appropriate message I can share with you today, in light of all that has transpired in the past 24 hours:


Psalm 23

23 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Sunset on Still Waters Pond, 11-24-2020

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
forever.
Amen.


Sunrise~ A new day is dawning. Let us give thanks to the Lord, and not take anything or anyone for granted. May God be with you all. Amen.