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, December 14, 2018

Friday Foto Friends - A Case for Closed Doors, Open Windows

Good Morning Friday Foto Friends!  If you are a Facebook friend, you've already seen this Christmas mug full of my morning tea. I love to sit at my computer in the morning, checking up on "friends" here in blogland, Facebook and email, and sip a cup of tea. Usually the tea gets cold because I forget to sip as I visit with friends...but it's still a great way to start the day. Once I finish this cup of tea we have our morning devotions/Bible reading, and then usually take a walk before breakfast.


This week has been a bit chilly in the mornings, as you can tell by the steam on the windows...this is where that tea mug usually sits... (Not always on top of that box of Christmas Tea, but that was what I was drinking...wouldn't you like to have a cup of Christmas Tea with me? I'd love to have you join me!)

but because it was the inspiration for this sign above our kitchen sink/windows. Our son the sign-maker (a.k.a. Ben's Wood Signs) made this sign for me a few years ago at my special request...it is one of my favorite things in this kitchen. I love looking out these windows as I wash dishes and prepare meals, and ponder how heaven and nature must be singing...

Back to the morning routine...even on chilly/frosty mornings we still take our walk. Here my hubby is strolling down our road...


He doesn't often need to wear this wool plaid, quilt lined jacket, but this week it has felt good. This jacket is very special to him. It is the one thing he requested from our middle son's personal belongings following his passing from cancer over four years ago. When we would visit our son and his family in Maine, he would always let his daddy wear this jacket when we went out in the cold weather up there.  My hubby was very pleased when our daughter-in-law presented him with this jacket. He now wears it with much pride and love.

Sorry, didn't mean to wander into sad thoughts. Actually, the jacket makes my hubby feel close to our son for a little while.  And that's a happy feeling. I kind of like it too.

Okay, moving along...I discovered something blooming in the Secret Garden today!!!
 This is a very pretty ruffled white camellia!  This particular plant was a gift from our "flower and plant lady" last year, and this is the first time it has blossomed since then!   So pretty! Thank you, Karen!

And...I also noticed these azalea buds starting to open!! These are also plants (that I got from my plant lady!)  that were planted in the Secret Garden last year, and this is the first time they've blossomed since then! I know, they are kind of early, but I believe these are the kind that blossom at different times throughout the year.
 Does anyone else see a little dog face in that blossom above? See the two ears, eye, nose, mouth? I just noticed that! How cool is that?

Again...another of the azaleas blooming in the Secret Garden!!!  There seems to be some kind of face on this one too...the one that is opened up more...am I crazy or can you see it too?   Not sure what kind of creature this one is, but it is cute and is wearing a little flowery hat.  (I am writing this late at night when I should be in bed...that might have something to do with seeing these faces in the flowers...LOL)

Now, if you look really closely just to the left of the porch post right in front of you in the middle of the picture, look out in the weeds across the road and you will see a little black blur. That was one of two bears running into the woods this afternoon (Thursday).  Hubby called me to the window and said there was a bear walking down the road. I grabbed my camera just in time to see not one, but TWO bears run into the woods as a truck was coming down the road and they were getting out of the way. One of the bears was kind of small, so it may have been a mother and cub.  We haven't seen many bears lately, so this was another surprise!


Okay, these next few pictures will be different.  As most of you are aware, we have been talking a lot about moving sometime in the near future, if and when we can sell our current home.    We had been looking at a house for a month or so in the area where we are planning to move, hoping that no one else would buy it before we could have a chance to put a contract on it.  We have taken several rides up to look at this house and property, just to see if it really would be a place where we would like to live. I kind of had my heart set on it, and was imagining how I would place the furniture in the house and what improvements we could make in the yard, etc., when we discovered to our dismay last night that the house now has a contract pending on it. SO...back to the drawing board. But these next few pictures were some that I took in the yard of that house last week. This is a moss carpet on the ground, with some tiny mushrooms here and there. It was such a pretty green, and so velvety, I couldn't resist taking these pictures...

Another view of the moss carpet...

And this toadstool was pretty cool...

It was growing alongside this old tree stump that is covered in lichen and moss.  Yes, this house had a woodsy, shady yard and lots of interesting old flowers and plants. It needed some work around the yard to be sure, but I like a natural woodsy yard.  However...we now know that this is not the place God has planned for us to live, so we will continue our search as we wait for our house to sell. It helps me to have something to look forward to so I can make mental plans for what needs to go with us and what needs to go elsewhere.  God knows what is best for us, and we will rely on Him to guide us to the "perfect" home for us.

I think you could call this week's "adventure" a case for "Closed Doors, Open Windows"....When God closes a door...He opens a window...so I can't wait to see what "window" of opportunity He will be opening for us, hopefully soon!

Now let us go through the looking glass and travel down the rabbit hole to see what other adventures our Friday Foto Friends have been experiencing this week!!  The gathering place is over at Deb's place, "Breathing in Grace", and you will meet the nicest people there!!!  Have a blessed and beautiful day...I'll be out there somewhere letting "Heaven and Nature Sing"....

28 comments:

  1. The story about the coat is heartwarming. :)

    I love your Christmas tree and nature photos and even the bears...but only from a distance. Ha ha!

    Have a very merry Christmas, Pamela. I remember when the trend was to say "Happy Holidays" instead. I've noticed people saying "Merry Christmas" more now. Maybe it's a new trend!

    Blessings to you and yours.

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    1. Hmm...I meant to say Christmas Tea, not tree... but it is beautiful too!

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    2. Saying "Merry Christmas" has always been the trend for me. Even when I was told at my place of work (an elementary school) that the school board said that we were NOT supposed to say "Merry Christmas" to the children, I could not allow others to dictate to me what to say regarding Christmas. I was always aware/cognizant of those who may be of differing religions and respected that and wished them a Happy whatever holiday it might have been, but no authority was going to take away my right to say "Merry Christmas". Thankfully, I was able to move on to employment in the private sector where the "authorities" weren't so P.C. I am thankful for our freedom of speech in this country, and am also respectful of others' as well. We are very blessed here in America. Thank you for enjoying the pictures and the bears from a distance! LOL. They disappeared into the woods before I could even say hello! LOL. Hope you have a blessed and marvelous weekend.

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    3. We are truly blessed! :)

      I am glad to hear you said Merry Christmas anyway. Funny how it is a revolutionary act these days...and those days.

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  2. My hubby loves flannel shirts, he has more of them in his closet than others. Would love to have tea with you, I'll go make my cup.
    Have a great weekend.

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    1. I'm so glad you had "tea" with me today. I am sitting here now on a rainy afternoon, having just had another "tea party" with some friends from our new church who came down to meet us for lunch at a local cafe' and then came here for some warm gingerbread and tea. It was very delightful, and I forgot to take any pictures. But it was good. Great way to spend a rainy day with friends. We can pretend we are doing the same, from a distance!! Have a blessed and wonderful weekend. Christmas is coming...

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  3. I love the flannel shirt background story. It's sweet that he is able to have those special feelings of warmth in the memories of your precious son. All your flowers are so pretty. Camellias and azaleas blooming in December! Fantastic to be able to enjoy those gorgeous blooms. I'm really sorry about your disappointment, but I know you trust God's wisdom fully in your desire for a new place. I totally forgot it's Friday. Maybe I better get with it! Your pictures with commentary are always enjoyable. Love the little dog!

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  4. And I forgot to ask. Is twinings your preferred brand of tea or just one of many? I'm not a tea drinker, but kind of would like to be.

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    1. Thank you, Nonnie, for your comments above. Regarding tea: I mostly drink Lipton's regular tea in the morning, but when I want something different, Twining's has a lot of different kinds to offer. This Christmas Tea is hard to find, but it is nice...a blend of cinnamon and cloves and other nice flavors. Lady Grey or Earl Grey are both nice teas, as well as Darjeeling. If you prefer herbal teas, Twining also makes a variety of those, but mostly I used the Celestial Seasons for herbal teas. I am not a true tea aficionado. I prefer tea bags to loose teas, even tho loose teas are supposed to be better. I just prefer the convenience of the tea bags. Again, I stick to the Lipton's regular black ceylon tea for my normal morning tea as well as to make iced tea. I hope you will try some special"Teas" and enjoy tea time with your friends...or even by yourself for an afternoon treat to brighten a long day...

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    2. I should have said above that the Lipton tea I drink is actually an "orange pekoe" kind of tea. That is the regular Lipton tea bag. It doesn't taste like orange, but that is the kind of tea leaf they use in it. If you'd like a nice orange/spiced tea, Bigelow Teas makes a very nice "Constant Comment" tea, which was my grandmother's favorite tea, and I love it as well. Just another flavor to enjoy with a Christmas cookie or fruitcake!! Enjoy!!
      Wish I could send you some through this window!

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  5. Love the story about the shirt....I enjoy tea but dont think about drinking it often. Hope you have a nice upcoming weekend.

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    1. A nice cup of hot tea is very enjoyable on a chilly winter afternoon...just saying...treat yourself to a nice little tea time and sit back and relax while you read a good book...or while you visit with friends here and in person...Try it. You might like it!

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  6. Wow you have a camellia in bloom - I've seen them at Bok Tower Garden but I don't know if I could get them to grow. Beautiful!

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    1. Whereabouts do you live? They seem to like the central part of Florida and also south Georgia. I don't know about the coastal areas. They do better in a semi-shady environment I have found. Good luck in trying them! They are so pretty, and there are so many varieties. Some do have a fragrance, but not all. However, if you don't see them growing in your part of the state, then most likely it isn't a good area for them. They will start blooming anytime from now until spring, depending on the variety.

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  7. Seeing your hubby in the coat and hearing the story...well, it really touched my heart. Thank you for sharing with us. The camellia is beautiful, so nice to see a bloom that pretty this time of year. We had the same thing happen to us when we moved a few years ago. I was so disappointed to see the home I wanted sold right out from under me. But our gracious Lord knew that home would not be what we would need and sent us to where we are now. I didn't see it at the time but looking back I am so thankful for His direction. He is going to do the same for you.

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    1. Thank you, Mary. Your words are always so full of encouragement and understanding... I know God has wonderful plans for us, and I am trying hard to be patient. Actually, I am relieved to NOT be trying to move over the holidays. We are just trying to sit back now and enjoy Christmas without the added stress. God knows best!!!

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  8. I see the doggy face too.
    Its great he has something personal from your son like that. Another place will open up for you. I would imagine not too many are shopping for homes at this time of year, maybe after the New Year things will start to get busy.

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    1. Thank you, Ann. Yes, our realtor has assured us that things will pick up after the holidays. Which is probably best. I needed to calm down and enjoy Christmas without the added stress of trying to move. God knew what I needed. He always does. Yes, the jacket is very special to him. (and to me as well). I love to just hold it in my arms sometimes....

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  9. Yep, I see the dog, Pamela! Couldn't quite make out the bears, though. :(
    That's such a touching story about your son's jacket. My son was given some of his grandfather's clothes when he passed, and they meant so much to him. I'm glad the weather is cold enough for John to be able to wear it.
    As always, your photos are amazing, and never fail to cheer my heart.
    Blessings!

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    1. Thank you, Martha. I'm glad you could see the "dog" in the azalea bud! Now I know I'm not crazy. LOL. Yes, it is comforting to have something from a loved one that we know they wore and had on their own body while living. I have a sweater of my mother's that is very special to me. I can feel her hugging me everytime I wear it. So glad you could stop in for a visit today. Always good to hear from you.

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  10. All o f your pictures are so good! Love the story about the flannel jacket. A precious gift you treasure, and it fits your hubby well!

    The Camelia! Wow! In December! Blooming flowers OUTDOORS in December is a real departure from what I was used to in Colorado. So beautiful.

    (smile) Yes, I see the dog’s face in the rose pink flower.

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    1. You will see more camellias in and around Ocala. They usually bloom in the winter and early spring. Most do not have any fragrance, but they are so beautiful. Azaleas will bloom in the spring mostly, but some are blooming now. Different varieties. Yes, the further south you go in Florida, the more you will see blooming all year long. (As long as we don't get a big freeze!) Oh, I'm glad you could see the dog's face! I'm happy I wasn't seeing things late at night! LOL Have a blessed and happy weekend. We are getting torrential rain here tonight (and all day).

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  11. Tell your hubby that I feel the same 'warmth' when I wear one of my mom's tops. I understand!! Love the photos, Pam, and the blooming flowers. You are right to trust in God for the right buyer and the right new home for you! Praying for you!

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    1. Thank you, Terri. Yes, I also feel that warmth/hug when I wear my mother's sweater. I've written about that before...it is a very tender and loving feeling. Yes, we will trust the Lord to guide us in our search and as He also sends just the right people to love this home as much as we have. I know He has it all planned out perfectly. I just wish He'd let me in on the "secret"! But that would spoil the surprise. So I must wait and be patient. God's timing is ALWAYS perfect.

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  12. As always, I get refreshed when I come here. I enjoy the idea of a special tea mug during this time of year. The story behind your hubby's jacket is precious. The blooming flowers in December is very special. God knows the perfect place for you and the perfect time to reveal it. Peace and blessings to you.

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    1. Thank you, Cecelia. I pray that you and your family will have a peaceful and joyous Christmas season. Yes, we know God has this whole situation in His control and that He has a plan that will bless our hearts with great joy. I just need to be patient and wait for His best opportunity!!

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  13. Fantastic photos Pamela and yes I too see the doggie face. LOL! Have a blessed weekend my friend.

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