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!

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Fun Bloggy Friends' Day!

 Look who I found in the little town of Micanopy, Florida, today!

Yes, these are two of our favorite bloggy friends,
Barbara from Sweet Tea and Sandals and Terri from Your Friend From Florida!

And here we are, trying to do a selfie. I wish I could have done something about that double chin, but it was the way I was standing...you understand...and it's the steroids I'm on from the epidural this past week in my neck...you understand, right? LOL.  But you can see we were quite happy to be together, and couldn't wait to find someone to take our picture so we just tried to do it ourselves.

After walking around looking in a few shops, we decided it was time to eat lunch, and guess who joined us????
Yes, that is Lily Grace, another famous bloggy friend from The Adventures of Lily Grace...and she was so excited to meet Terri and Barbara, two of her favorite blogging friends!

Finally we found a nice lady from the cafe' to take our picture while we were eating lunch.  And I must say, Lily Grace was the star of the show. Several people stopped by our table to say hello to her, and she very politely responded back to them.  

It was a rather warm day, with a heat advisory in place, so we really didn't want to spend much time outside.  Here is the only picture I took of one of the little shops, and mainly because it was so interesting with the huge oak tree growing out of the top of it. You may see this picture again on our other friends' posts, because we all took a picture of the same thing!

After lunch Lily Grace and I said our farewells to Barbara and Terri and we headed back home. They may have stayed and done some more shopping, so perhaps their posts will have more interesting pictures to share.  However, I did find this YouTube video online about the movie "Doc Hollywood", which was filmed in Micanopy over 20 years ago with Michael J. Fox as the star.  This is a video showing the different locations in town where the movie was filmed, so I figured this would be better than any pictures I could take, if you feel like watching. I've never seen the movie before, but now I want to.

All in all it was a wonderful day, and it was so much fun to be with some very special friends from here in blogland.  We all agreed it would be so much fun to meet more of our blogging friends somehow somewhere sometime.

A special thank you to Barbara, who orchestrated this event today. It was a wonderful break from our usual routines, and a time filled with joy and laughter and thankfulness for good friends.

Thank You, Lord, for special friends like all of YOU out there.
Have a blessed Sunday tomorrow.
Pam and Lily Grace

Friday, July 30, 2021

Friday Foto Friends~Lost and Found!

 Good Morning my Friday Foto Friends! 

First of all, again I want to thank all of you again for your thoughtful words of encouragement and prayers for me this past week as I endured that procedure on my neck .  I am feeling so much better and am so very thankful for how well the epidural has helped me to get some movement back into my neck without so much pain. I will be going back to physical therapy this morning and trusting I will be able to do so much more now without so much resistance! Praise God for healing grace and modern medicine!

Last week, if you read my post over at The Adventures of Lily Grace about the baby bluebirds leaving the nest, you will recall that Lily reported that we watched altogether four baby bluebirds leaving the nest. It was quite an exciting event...and in all the excitement of course I was taking pictures left and right. However at one point I had become so excited with checking my pictures on the computer and then having more action going on outside that I forgot to put the memory card back in my camera and as I was taking pictures of the last birds leaving the birdhouse, I realized too late they were not being recorded on the memory card, but in the "internal memory" of my camera.  This is an older model Kodak "EasyShare Z650" camera, which I love...but I never had the attachment to retrieve the pictures from the internal memory...a special cord that attaches to the camera and to the computer, and so those pictures were now stuck inside the camera with no way to send them to the computer! I could see them on the little "review" screen on the camera, and there were some very good pictures there, which I very much wanted to be able to share with you! And so, I had to do some googling and find the attachment I needed on Amazon.com, and thankfully it was available and not terribly expensive, and so I ordered it! So I have told you all of this so that you will fully appreciate the trouble I have gone to in order to share these photos with you today!!!

And so, drum roll, drum roll, without further adieu, here are the missing baby bluebird pictures:

This was actually the fourth baby to emerge from the birdhouse.  We did not realized there was a fourth bird still inside! We were so busy watching the others as they flew up into the trees to meet their parents that we had turned our backs on the birdhouse for a while. So you can imagine my surprise and delight when I looked again and saw this timid youngster, hanging on to that ledge with his right foot, wondering whether or not he should let go or not...

And THIS is the best picture of all! Somehow he turned himself around and flapped his beautiful blue wings for us to see, still holding on to the ledge, not quite sure of himself enough yet to let go...

He held on for another few seconds, and then, finally getting up his courage, he flew over to the deck railing and sat there for a few minutes to catch his breath and get up the courage to finally fly up to the trees...

He looked up at me (I was inside the house looking through the window), and I guess seeing me there made him realize he'd better get a move on and find his family before the funny looking lady with the silver camera got any closer...

I took this picture of the mother or father bluebird up in the tree, (bird on the lower left) calling to him.  I didn't realize until I finally was able to enlarge this photo on the computer that there was a Brown Thrasher sitting there, on the right, very close to the Bluebird!  I don't know if he would have hurt the baby bluebird, but I am sure Mama or Papa Bluebird were ready to fight for their baby no matter what!

And so that was the end of the Baby Bluebird photos on my "internal memory".  But there were a few other pictures that had been trapped inside my camera for some time that I was happy to finally "set free".  I figured you might enjoy seeing them as well, so here goes the remainder of my "trapped photos":

Last winter you might recall that we had a huge flock of Robins and Cedar Waxwings fly in and literally strip our holly tree of all of its red berries within the space of a few days.  Even though I posted many pictures from that event, apparently there were a few that I missed, again due to my overzealousness in taking pictures without remembering to put the memory card back inside my camera.  So here's a few of a Robin, having his breakfast, taken last November:

Our holly tree is once again loaded with berries, but they are still green. I expect we will have another rush of birds again later this year to look forward to!

And these last few pictures are the rest of what was hidden on my camera. Nothing too exotic or surprising, but we might as well get them out there and look at them, right?
One of our favorite Canada Geese, sometime this past winter or spring...

And my attempt to take a picture of a goose flying across Still Waters Pond. I like the golden ribbon effect from the motion of the wings in flight...do you see it?

Here is a picture of one of our lovely water lilies, which I had pulled up from the pond when I was out kayaking last year. I miss paddling around the pond in the kayak...maybe now that my neck is not quite so bad I might dare to venture out again one of these days...maybe when it cools down a bit...we'll see...that's a good goal for me to work  towards...

And if you look closely, you can see the female and male Wood Ducks swimming on the pond. I am always happy when I can get a picture of them because they mostly stay on the other side of the pond and if they detect my movement at all they take off and fly, so it is very hard to get a decent picture of them. 

Okay, that's all that was on there! But the good thing is, now that I have this attachment, it doesn't matter if I forget to put the memory card in or not!! Yay! Anything to help my feeble memory these days is a good thing!

Okay, so tomorrow is going to be a great day, as I am going to meet our blogging friends Barbara from Sweet Tea and Sandals and Terri from Your Friend From Florida for lunch over in the little town of Micanopy.    We are all very excited to be able to get together again. I have met both Barbara and Terri in the past, but never all together. So you can expect to be seeing lots of pictures from this little adventure from all three of us, I am certain!  It would be wonderful if sometime more of us bloggers could plan to meet together! Wouldn't that be a "hoot"?  

It might make history!

Have a blessed and wonderful weekend, my friends.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

A Humble Thank you, Friends!

I thought this picture of "me"...well not of me, would get your attention better than the real picture below. We could all use a little humor, couldn't we?

Just wanted to say "Thank you" to all my friends who prayed for me today while I had the epidural put into my neck!

I'm sure you never expected me to post pictures of that, now did you? But those of you who know me know that a camera is my main means of communication...and the selfie was a dangerous invention.

While I am still recovering from the effects of the mild sedation (thankfully even though I could hear them talking, the "pain" was mild and more like prickly pressure points...), I am very thankful that I came through the procedure very well, and hubby even took me out to lunch on the way home!

I was surprised that the injection was not into my neck at all, but rather into my back! And apparently they inserted a catheter that directed the medicine into my neck, with the use of an x-ray picture, to the exact places where it needed to be!  So thankful for modern medical inventions!

If you are a bit squeamish, don't worry, these pictures aren't very graphic...just educational.
When the nurse came and wrote this on my neck to mark the spot, I thought for sure that was were the needle would be going. To be honest, I was not really crazy about that idea, but figured that was what they had to do to get it right:
You can imagine my surprise (and relief!) when I felt them inserting the needle into my upper back instead of the neck! It felt like they were making quite a few "holes" in my back and I thought I was going to look like a pin cushion when done, but again I was in a for a pleasant surprise when I looked in the mirror and found this very small bandaid, about the size of a quarter, (but the padded gauze part was more like a dime)

Wait, who has that freckly, moley, age-spotted, wrinkly old woman's back? that can't be MY back! LOL.

Anyway, I am humbling myself to send you these pictures to thank you for your prayers, and also to encourage you if you have to have such a procedure done, don't be afraid! It wasn't as bad as I feared, and definitely GOD was with me because I know so many were praying! (He would have been there anyway, because God is ALWAYS everywhere present!) But the prayers helped ME to feel relaxed and calm.  Thank you all for being special friends who care!

There are so many of our friends out there who are going through difficult things...I won't name them all because I am sure I would miss someone...but suffice it to say many are enduring pain, loss, grief, serious health issues or other family/personal issues that bring great concerns.  I am glad that we can support one another here and show compassion when needed most. Many of us have already been through our own troubles and trials, and therefore we are able to comfort others as we have been comforted...just as has been explained to us here:

2nd Corinthians 1:3-4

3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

And yes, I will continue with the physical therapy as directed to help strengthen my neck muscles so they can support my neck better so the nerves won't be so pinched...the epidural will hopefully relieve the tension and inflammation so I can proceed with the exercises without so much pain! That's the plan, so we will just keep praying and plugging along. 

Thank you again!! God bless you all, and have a wonderful rest of your week!!

Monday, July 26, 2021

Tuesday 4: Future Ahead


Future Ahead...

Welcome to Tuesday 4 in memory of Toni Taddeo.

This week we have some questions from Pamela Steiner (that's ME!!) once again.  I hope you enjoy them.

Thank you, Annie, for using my crazy questions this week.  I came up with this idea after watching some shows on YouTube about people exploring abandoned houses.  There are many of them around the world, some as big as castles, and others just common humble homes. It is very interesting to see the kinds of things that have been left behind in these houses, as if the people just suddenly disappeared and no one ever went back to clean out the house or change a thing inside. This made me look at my house and wonder what people would think if they found my house in such a situation as this, and so that is how I came up with these questions. I hope you will enjoy answering them, and perhaps it will make you stop and think about just what kind of message we are leaving behind us here on this old earth...  I hope you will also share a few pictures of things from your house to give us a better "picture" of what they will discover!

So, here are the questions:

1. Let's pretend that it is 50 years into the future, and explorers have just discovered your house, "frozen in time" exactly as it is today. Everything is preserved, even the food, but of course no one has lived there for fifty years. What do you think would be their first reaction as they walk in the door of your house?

I think the explorers would wonder if they have stumbled upon a time capsule of a much older home than what it appears to be on the outside. When they step inside our house and look around, they will see many things from our ancestors that will take them back perhaps another 100 years! They would probably also think that I should have had someone do some dusting and cleaning before I left it like that!  Most likely they would also be amazed, as I am always amazed when I walk in the front door and the first thing I see is the view of Still Waters Pond out the back glass doors:
That view never ceases to astound me!

Just inside the front door they would hopefully notice that there is a guest book, and all guests are expected to sign it, so that I can look back and remember who was here when. Of course, 50 years from now I won't be here to know, but out of respect for the tradition of this home, they need to sign the guest book! That should tell them that guests are honored and treasured here.

2. What would the things left in your house tell the explorers about you?
I would hope that they would see that we were people who loved God, our family, and our honored guests. 

This sign that is on the wall in the living room came from my husband's grandparents' home (as did much of our furniture!)  It is quite old...and my husband always remembers seeing it there in their home.  They used to have a gathering of their church fellowship meet in their home for Bible study and Communion on a regular basis, with a traveling minister who came to teach them. 
I remember that one time a person came into our home who really did not know us very well, and upon looking at this sign on the wall she exclaimed, "Well, I guess that certainly explains what you believe about God, if there was any doubt!" 

These plaques are on the wall in our guest room...

And a guest bed is ready for what appears to be for a young lady guest, but it can be changed in a moment for anyone, any age, any time...

You could even decide to go golfing while visiting, because if the house was frozen in time on this day, for some strange reason my son's golf clubs are standing in the middle of the guest room! I am not exactly sure why, and I haven't asked, but there they are... I suppose because there is no room in his room, which we will not be showing here, and if people 50 years from now looked at it, they might get a totally different idea about the occupants of this house, so we will just leave it like that...not that it is anything bad, it just isn't exactly clean, if you know what I mean...But he is a hard working fellow and we are thankful to have him here with us.

And in nearly every room of the house there are pictures of family:

Mixed in among the many different kinds of books, which I guess is a part of question #3.

And someone liked old hats and jewelry...

There are diplomas on the wall showing that someone in our home was well educated...(hubby, not me...I got my "PHT", "putting hubby through", which was an education in itself!)

Oh, and there's a cedar wardrobe cabinet in the guest room full of boxes and albums full of photographs...

And everywhere you look there is LOTS of OLD stuff...each with a history of its own...

They would also discover that someone must have loved tea time and all things connected with that...

They might even find a cup of tea sitting there beside the rocking chair, waiting to be enjoyed...I wonder if it would still be hot?

And I suppose it would be no great surprise that whoever lived in this house was a person who loved dolls and all things that go along with that...

Do you see Lily Grace here, entertaining her friends?  I wonder what the explorers will think about that?

And a painting on the wall in the guest room, done by a young son who was a budding artist who loved cowboys and indians...

And a menagerie of assorted things, some created by a talented young man, other things collected...and a photo of the three young men who once grew up in this home...not in this particular house, but this "home", if you understand what I mean.

And this picture shows the blending of a little bit of everything in "My Room with a View", the place where I sit and write and talk to my friends here in blogland...
There's Pamela's Victorian Cottage (a doll house!) on the left, photographs from nature of bears, deer and other wildlife, and that window looking out onto Still Waters Pond, where one could watch the birds fly by or build their nests in the bluebird house...and "Let Heaven and Nature Sing"...

But just so you know that it's not all dolls and tea parties and books and interesting old stuff here, if they walked in on today frozen in time they would also discover this:

There is a pork loin roast thawing out on the counter, and dishes in the dish drainer,  Dawn dish liquid ready for action:

Bananas in different stages of ripening...and a little sign that says "Grateful and Blessed"...

A table that still has the candles and colors from the 4th of July on it, and here it is July 26th...but it will get cleaned up here in a little while because our kids are coming for supper to eat that pork roast that I'd better start cooking or it will be a late dinner....

Yikes! There is a basket of clothes on the couch, waiting to be folded!  Someone should have been paying more attention to her housework than to writing on her computer all afternoon...

3. What kinds of books would they discover on your bookshelves or beside your chair/bed?
Well, there are books about tea, devotional books and cookbooks...and on the bookshelves previously pictured above there are many of my hubby's books about WWII, the Civil War, and various theological books from his 30+ years of ministry. Many books from his pastoral library were donated to various young ministers or to a Christian school library when he retired.

A collection of old fashioned romance and adventure books from the late19th century and early 20th century...some are crumbling from age already, so they may be dust in 50 years!  Oh, and there are CD's of Christmas music and other favorite gospel music or some of the classics from Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Handel's Messiah, Chopin and other greats...

Some magazines and coffee table books on the coffee table...
This one below in particular is my "Pastbook", a collection of my photographs that were compiled from those I have shared on Facebook over the past 10 years! 

Most importantly, on the table by our chairs is the Bible...well worn, loved, and cherished, and used every single day.

4. What things would they discover in your closets or cabinets that would make them wonder why on earth you were saving it?
No pictures to show here, but mostly old clothes, winter coats, shoes, and boxes of old cards and papers and letters and just stuff...file cabinets full of sheet music from our years of singing solos or duets in church, and accompaniment tape cassettes for that music, which is now obsolete because no one uses tape players anymore for music... We also have boxes of my husband's sermons on tape...again...obsolete, but too expensive to convert it all to digital. I am sure people fifty years from now will have no idea what they are or how to listen to them.  We also have some video tapes of family movies that ought to be digitalized, but who knows if even that will be functional in 50 years?  

Well, I guess you get the idea.  Explorers in 50 years will wonder if they stumbled upon some kind of museum for sure...but hopefully they will still be able to feel the love here in these walls, and be able to see that the inhabitants of this house truly loved one another and had a strong faith in God above all else. I would hope that there will still be echoes of laughter in the halls, and signs of many happy memories of those who lived and loved here.

Now, I am looking forward to seeing what you've shared here, friends! I know I get a little carried away with pictures, etc., but that's just who I am.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but in my case I have a thousand words and a thousand pictures! LOL.  

I am posting this early because tomorrow (Tuesday) I will be going for my epidural in my neck. Your thoughts and prayers will be greatly appreciated.  When I get home I will look forward to seeing what you've written!!  Have a blessed and wonderful day/week!  And thank you, Annie, for hosting this weekly "party" of friends!!