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!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Midweek Reflections and a little mystery here and there... WITH AN UPDATE!

Remember when I showed you these pictures last year? (Click HERE for that post)

I said back then: "They are doing road construction in the little town that we are planning to move to, and someone decided they wanted to save  this old house rather that have it demolished to make way for the new road.  I don't know where it is headed, but would love to see it when it is relocated to its new "home".

Well, mystery solved!! Hubby and I were out for a little ride, headed for our morning walking place, and we discovered the new location of this old house!

It's actually not too far away from its previous location, and not too far away from our church.
 This lot actually faces a little lake, so I can imagine it will be lovely when it is finished.
However, I don't guess any of us will be able to live there as it is a restoration project of the Florida Dept. of Transportation...so we shall see what it becomes. It is a residential area, so I don't know that it will be something that will be open to the public...but, well, I guess there is still a mystery! We will just have to wait and see! 

UPDATE:  Here is a LINK to a guide to historical places in Interlachen, and this house is the first house listed. 


1....Freeborn-Stock-Whittier House

"This house was built for Mr. Freeborn, the cashier of the first Interlachen Bank, which existed in Interlachen from 1890 until 1896. In 1905, he sold the home to Joseph W. Stock, a teacher and, for many years, the principal of the local school. Mr. Stock left the home to his son, Joseph C. Stock, who also was a teacher as well as a farmer. He raised his four sons there with his wife, Priscilla. The home left the Stock family for the first time in 95 years upon the death of Mrs. and then Mr. Stock. It is now the home of Frances Whittier who has restored it to its former beauty.
The back yard originally extended north to Lake Chipco, until SR 20 was built. Mrs. Whittier is trying to keep the old fashioned character of the homes along SR 20 by opposing the plans to widen SR 20 through Interlachen to four lanes of traffic." 

Sadly, Mrs. Whittier did not win her battle to keep SR 20 from widening through Interlachen to four lanes of traffic, and hence, that is why this house has been moved.  It's new location is still on Lake Chipco, but across the highway, which is across from where the house was originally and a little further west.  I don't know if Mrs. Whittier is still living. I will keep researching to find out what the plans are for this house now that the state has undertaken this restoration project. I'll keep you posted !

Speaking of our morning walk...we had a little companion hop along beside us:
Can you see him?

Here's a better view! I almost stepped on him when I got out of the car! So glad I didn't...that would have been freaky!!

 I just thought this dead tree with flowers growing around it was interesting...

Back home again...and look at this handsome great blue heron in our pond! I'll bet he's finding some good breakfast in there...

 We had some foggy mornings this week...so here are some foggy reflections on the pond:

 Well, not exactly a reflection...But our resident hawk was making his presence known up in this tree in the mist...

And then he flew across the pond and landed way up in the tip top of a very tall pine tree. I could still hear him calling...
 I love to see a foggy morning on the pond. The only drawback here is the sun comes up behind us, so we don't get to see the sunrise through the fog...

But it is still beautiful in a mysterious dreamy sort of way...

This is what autumn mornings look like in our neck of the woods...

 Fresh new fern growing in the damp earth along the pond... (blurry due to the fog)

Speaking of mystery...they say the "night has a thousand eyes"...

And a thousand eyes can't help but see...  actually these are the lights across the pond at night, and some are also reflections on the pond...but this is the best I can get...it was actually much prettier than this...

So now we come to this evening...and what a gorgeous sunset it was on the pond tonight...

This big cloud looks like it has many arms or legs and is creeping up on us..

Here it comes....

I must be in a spooky mood since tomorrow is Halloween! Ha Ha! But doesn't this look like something hovering over us?  However, I believe it is something very beautiful...another of God's amazing masterpieces in the sky...

And as we calm down and enjoy the beauty of the moment, we are at peace for another night.
No mystery here...

"Come, behold the works of the Lord,
Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire.
Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!
The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge."
Psalm 46:8-11

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Weekend Reflections

 Wondering how everyone's weekend was?  Ours was pretty good, for the most part.  Saturday morning we went "to town" with the "kids" for breakfast and to visit a sale at a "warehouse" behind a vintage furnishings store...but before I get into that, I want you to see a couple of the interesting murals that are painted on walls of buildings in downtown Palatka.  This one below is a picture of that downtown street, judging by the scene it must have been in the 1800's...and there was a tightrope walker with the circus that had come to town:

This gives you a better perspective on where this mural is painted on the side of the building:

Here is another one on a building across the street from that one.  There are many such interesting and historical murals throughout the downtown area of Palatka. Sometime I will try to get pictures of all of them to share with you. They are fascinating!

We went to breakfast with our "kids", at the Magnolia Cafe'.  (Same place I went for my birthday a few weeks ago).  Sorry kids, I caught you with your mouths full...

Same thing, sorry hubby...He was trying to swallow his biscuit before I took the picture! LOL.

And here I am, sharing my cup of tea with you:

I thought the chandelier above our table was worthy of note:

As were these photos of an old truck on the wall...

From breakfast we walked into the store next door, "Urban Farmhouse", where our kids have sold several of these farmhouse style console tables that they build:

And from there we went into the "warehouse" that was having a sale of some old items that still needed to be refinished or repurposed...I did find something that I am going to be doing as a project, but I will save that for another post so I can give it more time and space...

It was a great morning...and then the kids went home and worked on building more tables because they had more orders! And later in the day they came to our house for supper...the first real "fall supper" of the season...I forgot to take a picture...but we had a delicious fall meal. My daughter in law provided baked acorn squash and mashed potatoes, and I cooked a pork shoulder roast in sauerkraut and apples in the crock pot all day long, which was perfect with the mashed potatoes and squash.  We also had some zucchini squash with onions to balance out the meal.  (Followed by a Marie Callender's Coconut Cream pie for dessert! I didn't want to heat up the oven since it was not a very cool fall day after all)  I was so happy when my daughter in law said she loved sauerkraut...I was a little nervous because I didn't ask her before hand if she liked it.  I mean, these kids are just about to celebrate their 2nd anniversary in a couple of weeks...so I don't know everything about her yet! But what I know I love. We are so blessed to have her in our family!

On a more somber note, I learned this weekend of the passing of a very dear friend in New Hampshire.  I have not seen this friend for several years since we haven't been able to get back up there, but our friendship goes back many years from when we served in the ministry there and she and her family were members of our church.  My friend has not been well for the past few years, but I was surprised to learn that she was in hospice care this past week and then passed away early Saturday morning. It really hit me by surprise and I guess I feel a little guilty that I had not been very communicative with her for the past few years. You know, we get busy in our own lives and sometimes distance and circumstances keep us apart...but her passing has hit me kind of hard. She is the second very dear friend that has passed away in the last few months, and they are both named Sharon, and they both have last names that begin with "W".  And they were both amazing Christian women who gave of themselves so much to others...never expecting anything in return.  Here is a picture of me with this friend, along with another  mutual dear friend. Sharon is in the middle:

This picture was taken in 2014, when our son was dying of cancer in a hospice house in Maine. My friend Nancy, on the far left, was my son's mother in law, and she was there with us as family. But my friend Sharon came to visit us, to comfort and encourage us at a very difficult time. What is interesting is, Nancy and I are grandmothers to our grandson Noah. Nancy and Sharon both share a grandson who is a week younger than Noah (and is also Noah's cousin!).  So we were all becoming grandma's at the same time...and that was 20 years ago!

If you are a facebook friend you have already heard about this, so I apologize for repeating the same thing.  Sharon used to send me little notes, often with a lady's cotton handkerchief tucked inside...and she would always quote the title to the song "His Eye is on the Sparrow" as a little word of encouragement.  I said earlier that when I learned she had passed away, I imagined I could hear her singing, "I sing because I'm happy! I sing because I'm free!"...as she is now free from her body of death and enjoying the joys of heaven (and reunited with her hubby after several years) in a brand new heavenly body. 

Years ago, when we moved away from NH, my friend gave me these special things:

She knew I liked dolls, and she gave me this sweet doll, who I named "Rose of Sharon". (Little did I know then that someday I would also have a daughter in law named Rose!) 

She gave me this plaque, which reads:

I have often thought of Sharon as one of those special "angels sent down to walk with me." A truer friend one could not ever find.

And last, but not least, when she learned that I was having some surgery many years ago, she sent me this very soft and cuddly bunny, along with a wonderful soft cotton nightgown. I wore the nightgown until it finally wore out...but the bunny continues to comfort me and has served me well through several surgeries. I call her my "Boo Boo Bunny", because she fits perfectly over any place that is hurting and keeps me from re-injuring myself...but also because she is a reminder of a very sweet, humble, compassionate friend that I am feeling very sad to no longer have the joy of seeing here on earth...

But praise be to God, through Jesus Christ, as believers we know that we will one day be together again in heaven for eternity!  There will be many happy reunions on that day...but most of all, we will finally see Jesus face to face, and sing the story, "Saved by Grace" by Fanny Crosby

Please treasure your friends and family...write that note, send that card...don't put it off...that is what I am learning the hard way. 

Have a blessed week...hug a neck and tell your friends and family you love them!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Welcome to "Our Neck of the Woods"...And Time for Praise and Prayers

 Remember this sign from our previous house? It used to welcome guests to our home...and I just found it in a box here in our new house and decided it needed to come back out and welcome our guests to "our neck of the woods" again. However, we really don't live in the woods like we used to, and we don't have any bears walking through our yard, and haven't seen a deer yet either, although we know they are around...just not here yet.  But we still believe that we live "where life is good", and there is still "Fresh Air, Star Gazing, and Quiet Spaces"...it's just a little different than before...

I also found my favorite "moose pillow", which was a gift created by our dear friend Sharon, who went to be with the Lord this past August after a hard fought battle with lung cancer (and she never ever smoked).  Sharon created this wonderful, soft leather pillow for me to hold close after the passing of our son to cancer over five years ago. Little did she even think that I would now hold it close in memory of her as well...

I also found my little pictures from the windowsill at the other house...favorite photos and things that make me smile.  This tiny little picture that says: "Remember, When God closes a door He opens a window"...I found this in a store while looking for Christmas gifts for others...and this just popped out at me and I knew it was God's special little Christmas gift to me that year...since that goes along with my blog title...

The family photos are each very special to me...no need to explain...I was missing having them out where I could see them, so decided it was time to put them up on my new "windowsill"...which is actually the breakfast bar, but it is above the kitchen sink, so I spend a lot of time here...

One of my favorite things: "Just as God gives the birds an abundance of seeds, He send us His blessings and cares for our needs."  Also note the little Chinese fortune cookie proverb that I've taped to the bottom:  "Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings while the dawn is still dark."

Here's one of those little birds now:  This Wren jumped up on the chair on the deck after the rain the other morning...
 He's definitely one of birds that sings the loudest as he goes about gathering food and building nests for his family. I love how they like to come close to the window where we can see them now and then...

And here is a new bird seen on the pond last evening...a "Cormorant".  We were enjoying watching him until something spooked him (or he saw a fish) and he dove down into the water and we never saw him come back up. I'm sure he did somewhere, but just not in our view...

If you are a Facebook friend, you've already seen these photos, but this was me relaxing on Sunday afternoon in my little den.

Hubby snuck up behind me and took these pictures while I was reading a magazine...

I said thanks that at least he didn't take a picture of me taking my Sunday afternoon nap...

I do want to give thanks to the Lord for some answered prayer this week. Yesterday I went with one of my dear church friends to visit her doctor in the city.  She was very concerned about a test that she was going to have to do, because there was concern that she could possibly have cancer.  She had already had some other tests, and this test could confirm that possible diagnosis. We prayed prior to her going in for the test...(as had many friends/loved ones been praying ever since we'd heard of it).  Praise the Lord, this test showed that there was NO sign of cancer. What a great relief and answer to prayer. How we rejoiced and then we celebrated by doing some shopping at Hobby Lobby (my first visit there!) and then out to lunch at Red Lobster!

God is so good...and we give Him praise for the good things He is doing in so many ways. This was just one example (but a great one!)

However, as I close this tonight, I want to request prayer for one of our blogging friends, Annie at "Cottage by the Sea".  She requested prayer for her granddaughter, a.k.a. "our famous anonymous kid", who apparently has a kind of aneurysm in her brain.  I don't know any other details, but please keep Ann and her granddaughter and the family in your prayers.  

There are many examples of Jesus' healing in the Bible. I do not believe that was just for then and not for now. I do believe that God is still working in the lives of His children today. I was just reading in Luke 8:41-56, which gives several stories of Jesus healing...the woman who had the issue of blood for 12 years and came from behind him and merely touched the hem of His garment, and even though there was a huge crowd pressing against Him, Jesus felt her, and even knew that power went out from Him...and He said to the trembling woman, "Daughter, be of good cheer, your faith has made you well. Go in peace." (verse 48)  And then as he continued on His journey to Jairus house, whose daughter was dying, and when the people came to Him and said she had already died, Jesus said "Do not be afraid; only  believe, and she will be made well."  
(Verse 50)...and Jesus healed her...

I pray tonight that God will indeed hear our prayers on this dear young woman's behalf. Thank you for praying with us if you feel led to do so. Amen.