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, September 30, 2020

Wednesday Treasures From My Grandparents

So, here it is Wednesday again, and a time to share with you some of my special "treasures"...things that I've saved from childhood, or other collections of particular items of interest. And after last night's debate (did you stay up and watch it to the "bitter end"? I did....wow, what a brawl!) I thought we might need something pleasant and sweet to look at this morning to take our minds off of the craziness.
 I wasn't sure what it would be for this week, until I thought of something that I hadn't seen in a while and wanted to pull it out of it's box in the closet and enjoy it for a little while.

Yes, that is a set of bunk beds, doll bunk beds to be specific, made especially for me by my Grandpa Mursch when I was a little girl. (My paternal grandpa).

He was a skilled craftsman, and built other nice toys and things for his other grandchildren too. I believe my sister had a lovely high-chair for her dollies. I'm not sure if she still has it, as when our family moved to Florida from Pennsylvania back in the 1950's, we had to leave some things behind in storage at my uncle's farm, and I'm not sure we ever got everything back from there that we had left behind.

But somehow I managed to keep my doll bunk beds. And I've managed to keep them well over 60 years, through many moves in my own adulthood.  I never had a little girl to play with them, so that is probably why they are still in such great shape.  
(P.S. After getting ready to post this, I realized that those bookshelves behind the doll bed were also built by my grandpa!! They hold my collection of favorite old antique books. Another treasure!)

My grandfather doesn't get all the credit for this lovely set.
My grandmother also had a part in making it so nice and comfy for my dollies.

She made the lovely mattresses for the beds:

This is a closeup of the sweet little rosebud pattern on the mattresses:

This the underside, where she stitched them together with pink yarn:

Now doesn't my little "Sandra" doll look comfy and cozy? You met Sandra HERE last week. She was lovingly created for me by my maternal grandma Tedlie. Maybe my grandmas got together and collaborated on these special gifts...I really don't know, but I am happy I still have them!

The cover on the mattress above is an old embroidered pillowcase, made by my husband's grandma, 
"Nanny Martin".  I thought it was cute to use as a sheet over the mattress.  So it seems I've gotten all the grandmas in the act here today! LOL.

But I actually wanted to focus on the things that came from my paternal grandparents.
Here they are in a more casual moment. I loved seeing this photo of them. I'd never really seen them this "playful" together before . Kind of gave me a new insight into their relationship.

Here is another treasure from my grandma.
She loved tea and teacups just like me. Or maybe I liked them just like her...probably that is the way it was...anyway, she gave me this delicate rosebud teacup and saucer one year for either my birthday or Christmas.  Isn't it lovely?  The pattern is "June Bouquet", by Duchess Bone China, made in England. My grandma must have also loved roses and rosebuds, since that is the pattern on the little doll bed mattresses as well as on this teacup!

And here is another special little treasure from my grandparents:

This is a Madame Alexander doll, "Wendy",  and she is so lovely in her pretty gold taffeta gown and brown velvet jacket. She used to have a little white fur muff and hat to go with the outfit, but they are long gone. She is a bit worse for the wear. This is the kind of Madame Alexander doll that could bend her legs at the knees. However, her little legs came apart and are no longer connected. I'm sure they could be restored with proper rubber bands and someone who knows what they are doing. But for now she must stay seated in the pretty glass bowl in the china cabinet. You will notice that she has red hair. That was because I also had red hair. I've probably had her since I was about seven or eight years old.
(I just noticed that there is a photo bomber in this picture! Ha ha. That was unplanned! The china closet has a mirrored back)

And this is another special little doll, "Ginger". I'm sure many of you remember the Ginny dolls.
She is also well loved and rather worn, but at least she still has her legs! LOL. Again, another special gift from my grandparents when I was a young girl.

One year for my birthday I received a lovely Cinderella Watch. (The watch is long gone). This pretty little china doll came with the watch. She has had her shares of calamities as well. I had to glue her head back on when she fell and broke her neck. Actually her arms were also broken when she fell, and it appears she had to be glued back together at her waist. Poor Cinderella! I do hope her Prince will come and love her just the way she is! She has had a very difficult life. But look! She's still smiling! Perhaps that young man with the bagpipes standing next to her is making her happy.
He must be a true Prince!

One last special treasure for this day:
This sweet little white teapot and teacup and saucer belonged to my Grandma. I didn't receive it until after she had passed away.  I'm not sure if my sister and I used this little set when we visited our Grandma as little girls. I do remember having a tea party on her front porch many, many years ago when we all still lived in Pennsylvania. Maybe my sister remembers better than I do. My memories from that far back are very fuzzy since I was still such a little girl.
The picture of the little girl having her breakfast with her Teddy Bear is a card that I found one time many years ago and loved it so much that I bought it and have kept it. I guess I like to pretend that was me once upon a time.

I hope you enjoyed this little walk back through my childhood memories. I hope to be sharing more about this particular Grandma in the next few months. She is the one I am focusing my genealogical research on since she was adopted as an infant. Her 125th birthday is coming up in December, and I am hoping to have a more complete story to tell about her by then. So stay tuned!

Here are some words of wisdom for those of us who are grandparents:

Deuteronomy 4:7-9
7.  "For what great nation is there that has God so near to it, 
as the Lord our God is to us, for whatever reason we may call upon Him?
8.  And what great nation is there that has such statutes and righteous judgments as are in all this law which I set before you this day?
9.  Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life.
And teach them to your children and your grandchildren."

Also from Psalm 103:17-18

17.  "But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting
on those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children's children,
18.  To such as keep his covenant,
and to those who remember His commandments to do them."

The most important gift we can give our grandchildren is to teach them about the God Who loves them...about Jesus our Savior Who gave His life for them so that they can have eternal life and life more abundant.  My grandparents were devout Christian people who lived their lives as good stewards of the gifts He had given them. They were always active in their church, actually were founding members of their church when they moved to Florida and there was no church nearby where they lived. They were not showy or demonstrative people, but lived a peaceful, thoughtful life and set a good example for their children and their grandchildren. I appreciate that "gift" of living humbly and honestly before God most of all.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

"He Has Made Me Glad"

Well, it has certainly been a whirlwind week of celebrating me becoming a "septuagenarian".  I had to actually look that word up and get the spelling correct. I've never been a "septuagenarian" before. Maybe some of you are already there and have more experience in this department. It's all new to me! LOL.

But I've had a great week of celebrating with friends and family, and I just praise God for so many blessings I can't count them all!
Here's a smattering of pictures from the past week. Some you may have already seen on Facebook.

Flowers from my kids, and then this lovely centerpiece container to put flowers in for on the table:

Friends from our former home came to spend the day and celebrate with me on Saturday:

I actually blew out the candles...of course there were only two candles, but they represent 70 years!
Took a BIG breath...and I was being very careful not to "spit" on the cake.

On Friday I went out to breakfast with my honey:

These pancakes were LOADED with blueberries, and SO Good!!
I can't believe I ate the whole thing!

A new bloom on the Rose of Sharon bush in the Memorial Garden for my "heavenly Birthday gift" from my son in heaven...

Our kids were here Friday night to celebrate with me too:
(after we went out to eat at a nearby restaurant, "Hog Wild Country Cafe". I had ribs!)

L to R: Sherrie (the sister to our daughter in law Rose, visiting from MN.), Rose, Benton and Scott:

This wasn't my birthday, but one day last week it was actually cool enough to wear my flannel shirt while taking our walk.  That didn't last long...we are back to summer weather again, but hopefully not for too much longer. I was celebrating the first day of autumn here:

And here below is our sermon for today from I  Peter 3:1-12, and our praise team singing
"He Has Made Me Glad"....won't you sing along...it will definitely make you "glad".

"I will enter His gates with thanksgiving in my heart
I will enter His courts with praise
I will say this is the day that the Lord has made
I will rejoice for He has made me glad

He has made me glad, He has made me glad
I will rejoice for He has made me glad
He has made me glad, He has made me glad
I will rejoice for He has made me glad"

Interestingly, all week long it seems our morning devotional readings have been about age, growing older, life in general...these passages in particular seemed to be speaking to me directly:

Psalm 90:10-14
10.  The days of our lives are seventy years;
and if by reason of strength they are eighty years,
yet their boast is only labor and sorrow;
For it is soon cut off, and we fly away.
11.  Who knows the power of Your anger?
For as the fear of You, so is Your wrath.
12.  So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
13.  Return, O Lord! How long?
And have compassion on Your servants.
14. Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy,
that we may rejoice and be glad all our days!"

Kind of goes along with the song we sang today:

He has made me glad, He has made me glad
I will rejoice for He has made me glad
He has made me glad, He has made me glad
I will rejoice for He has made me glad"

Yes, friends, I am very glad and thankful to have reached 70 years and be in relatively good health and feeling pretty good for someone of such a "great age". Truly I have been well blessed and am extremely thankful.  And I am thankful for each of you as well. I haven't been around to visit this weekend as I have been kind of busy "celebrating", but I hope to get caught up with you all next week. Thank you for so many who have sent me happy birthday greetings here or on Facebook. What a joy and blessing to have such wonderful friends!  God bless you all, and thank you again for being "friends".  

"He Has Made Me Glad!"


Thursday, September 24, 2020

Thursday Blessings And Friday Fotos

 It is Thursday afternoon, and I am just feeling so blessed! Look what I saw outside my window on the porch railing yesterday afternoon: 

This just blessed my heart so much...that God would send that beautiful butterfly right here for me to enjoy from my "room with a view"...one of His special winged messengers of love and peace...

This picture doesn't do it justice, but those maple trees on the other side of Still Waters Pond are getting more and more colorful every day.  Another of God's special blessings. 

As I looked from our front porch I could see the tall magnolia tree standing across the street, and I noticed something red on it. So of course I had to go have a closer look!
These are the magnolia seeds that develop on the "cones" after the tree is finished blooming for the summer. Another of God's autumn beauties!

Oh, back across Still Waters Pond I noticed these two Sand Hill Cranes walking around one evening. I do hope they will come back and stay...and perhaps decide to build their nest here on our pond this year.

In our own yard these Holly trees are so full of berries this year...I wonder if that is a sign of a cold winter? I don't remember having so many holly berries on these trees last year.

These are getting redder every day.

People keep remarking about our cornstalks growing under the bird feeder!
This one in particular is getting taller every day.
Upon closer inspection, I noticed that it is actually growing an ear of corn in the middle of the stalk! Wow! We may have our own corn crop yet, thanks to our bird seed!

Ever since we put the roof over our back deck I've been wanting to hang out this windchime that was a gift in memory of our son Matthew. I've kept it here inside beside my desk because there was no good place to hang it outside until now.

Now I can see it from my "open window" in my "room with a view", and possibly even hear it chime  when the wind blows. I'm not sure how well I will hear it with the windows closed, but it will be a delight when we are sitting out on the porch this fall.

Yesterday we went grocery shopping at Publix, and I saw this mug for sale. Since this is my birthday week I justified my buying it for myself. Hubby was there with me and said to go ahead and add it to my birthday gifts. I love these mugs that have something positive to say.

This one says:
"The whole world is a series of miracles, 
but we're so used to them we call them
ordinary things."
Hans Christian Anderson

I am grateful for the "ordinary things" that truly are God's miracles sent to bless us each day.

Like breakfast on the porch overlooking Still Waters Pond with my hubby.

And grateful for the miracle of beautiful skies, created by the Master Designer, God Himself, with such amazing strokes of His paintbrush...

This was the scene in the skies last evening when we were headed for our walk...

I wish you could have seen the actual rainbow of colors around that sun shining through the clouds.

But then, not to be outdone, this morning's sunrise was also another beauty to behold:

Photos taken from our front porch as the sun was peeking up above the trees.

And then this glorious swirl of pinks and blues in the skies overhead before the clouds moved in and covered it back up.  You had to be quick to see this masterpiece this morning! I'm so glad the Lord nudged me to take a look out the front door before it was too late! In another minute I would have missed this blessing!

Yes, like the quote on the mug said,

"The whole world is a series of miracles, 
but we're so used to them we call them
ordinary things."

Hans Christian Anderson

Psalm 150
1.  Praise the Lord!
Praise God in His sanctuary;
Praise Him in His mighty firmament!
2 Praise Him for His mighty acts;
Praise Him according to His excellent greatness!
3 Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet;
Praise Him with the lute and harp!
4 Praise Him with the timbrel and dance;
Praise Him with stringed instruments and flutes!
5 Praise Him with loud cymbals;
Praise Him with clashing cymbals!
6 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord!

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Wednesday Treasures~Baby Me!

Since this is my birthday week (Friday), and it is a major decade year, I thought it would be okay to share a few "treasures" of my babyhood. I hope you won't mind.

Here is my favorite baby picture, because it is one of the rare photos that is in color and shows my red hair. Actually, this picture was from a "slide" that my grandparents took, and it was made into a print later. I was about 10 months old.

This picture was my first birthday, and what I love about it is that my mother used her good crystal water goblets and stemmed dessert dishes for the ice-cream. I wish the picture were clearer to get a better look at the cake. I don't know what kind it was, but I imagine my mother made the boiled white icing for it. There was no such thing as frosting in a can or box back then...or cakes either, for that matter. The cake was made from scratch. Birthdays were always special occasions and a good time to bring out the good dishes and crystal. Even for a baby's first birthday! 

This picture was me at 6 months old. According to the "notes", I had the chicken pox then.  I believe this occasion was on my sister's birthday, because she had the chicken pox for her birthday that year.
I recognize that toy on my high chair tray...It was a "Humpty Dumpty".  Not sure how I remember that. Probably my mother told me that was what it was. I doubt that I can remember my toys from when I was 6 months old. I can barely remember what I had for breakfast today...

I love this picture of me with my Grandma Tedlie. I don't have a lot of pictures of my maternal grandmother with me, and this was special because we were going for a walk in the woods. I was about two years old then.

No, this isn't me, but this is my "Baby Elva" doll that I've told you about before. 
Today Elva is dressed in my original baby dress, and she is holding a doll that my Grandma Tedlie made for me when I was a baby. Her name was "Sandra". Why I chose that name I do not know. I don't recall knowing anyone with that name when I was little, but for some reason that is the name I gave this little doll, and so that is who she is.  She is well loved and worn...well...after all, she is almost as old as I am!

And here below, Baby Elva is modeling my original Baby Bunting outfit.
Since I was born in Pennsylvania where it was very cold, a Baby Bunting was a necessity!
I found this wrapped in a special bag among my mother's treasures when we were cleaning out my parents' home preparing for the estate sale. My sister and I both agreed that it was probably mine, and so I kept it. It fits Baby Elva just fine!

I found a few other things in the same bag with the Baby Bunting, and "Baby Elva" has agreed to continue being our model today:

Baby Elva is wearing a sweet little hand crocheted bib and knitted booties. I don't know if the booties were originally yellow or white. I believe they may have yellowed with age. It is amazing to think that I once had feet small enough to fit in those tiny little booties! A far cry from my size 9 shoe today!

There was also this beautiful knitted baby blanket, again, probably yellowed with age. I don't know if it was hand made or not or any other details except for the fact it was with these other baby things, so we will just assume that baby blanket once covered my tiny little body and kept me warm and cozy!

Upon closer inspection of this sweet little dress Baby Elva is wearing below, it looks a lot like the dress I was wearing in the very first picture up above. I am not sure how that can be, because I was 10 months old in that picture, and this dress seems like it is only for up to about 6 months in size...but if you look at the sleeves, it sure looks the same. Maybe all baby dresses were made like that back then...

Here is another of my favorite treasures from my childhood:
Yes, that is my Tiny Tears doll. She is very old and brittle. Her one rubber arm is cracking and coming apart, so I have to be very careful with her. But oh! How I loved that doll!  Tiny Tears could drink and wet her diaper, and she cried real tears too! My sister also had one just like mine, and we played and played with our baby dolls.  We pretended we were "Lucy and Mary". I was Lucy, because I had red hair, and I loved Lucy!  My sister Doris liked the name Mary better than Ethel, so she was Mary. My baby was "Little Ricky". Not sure what she named hers. We sure had a lot of fun pretending. 
Do children still do that today?

I wanted to mention the blanket. It was embroidered by my Aunt Margie (my mother's oldest sister) for my first baby. So it is also a "treasure".

Oh! Here I am in one of my more angelic moments:

Maybe I should leave it here and quit while I am ahead! LOL.

Well, maybe one more. You have probably seen this picture already because I am sure I must have shared it before, but it's another favorite.
This is my whole family.

My Dad and Mom are on the back, and we four kids are on the front, "The stair-steps"
Russell, Clifford, Doris and yours truly.
Only my brother Clifford, my sister Doris and I still remain. 
The rest are waiting for us in heaven some day!

What a great day of rejoicing that will be!

So, that is my little "Wednesday Treasure" Album for today. 
I hope you enjoyed coming along down memory lane with me.

"But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; 
for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 19:14