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, January 28, 2023

Friday Foto Friends on Saturday!

 Greetings and Salutations Friends! Yes, it is Saturday already, and I never got a round to posting anything yesterday for Friday Foto Friends because it was just a busy busy day, and at first I really didn't have many photos to share, but as often happens, as the day goes by things "develop" and pictures emerge from the shadows...so here we go...pictures that are actually from throughout the week but culminating in something post-worthy by today. Hope that makes sense!

Let's go back to the beginning of the week and work our way through, shall we?

Monday morning sunrise...we were on our way early in the morning to the radiology clinic so that I could have two MRI's.  Yes, that's right, I said two.  For those of you who know me, you will remember that I have had some chronic issues with pain in my neck, shoulders, and back.  I had a cervical spinal fusion in 2021 to correct a ruptured disc in my neck, which helped take care of my neck and some of the arm/shoulder pain on the right arm, (although I still have issues with the right arm to a certain degree, i.e., a frozen shoulder that has only partially "thawed out". LOL)  

 But over the past year the pain in my right shoulder has migrated to my left shoulder, and it is now the primary issue, but I also have a lot of muscle and/or nerve pain in my upper back, especially when under any stress, etc.

(I hope you are enjoying the ride with me and the sun rising over the pasture land at a local farm while I tell this story)  There are cows in that field, if you can see them.

Anyway, long story short, my Doctor was finally convinced that I needed an MRI to find out what's going on. I already had some X-Rays a few weeks ago that were inconclusive.  Of course, they can't do it all in just one MRI...oh no, they have to do two, one of the left shoulder/arm, and one of the upper thoracic spine.  And they couldn't schedule them exactly "back to back" (pun intended) because they had to fit someone else in between, so I got to endure one MRI, then go sit in a waiting room for a half hour or so, and then go have the other MRI. They asked me if I was claustrophobic, (which I am), but I said no. I'm tough. I can do this.  LOL.  Well, thankfully, I wasn't alone in the MRI machine. Jesus was with me.  The technician asked me if I would like to listen to some music while in the MRI, and I said yes, so he asked what kind and I said preferably Christian music, so he said he would find some contemporary Christian music for me. That was nice. He gave me the headphones, and once the test started it's banging and hammering sounds (if you have ever had an MRI you will know what I mean), the music started playing. It was difficult to hear, but  the song that was playing (at first), was "I Speak Jesus".  I think I've shared this song with you before, but if not, here it is again:

This was the perfect song to hear while going through the "tunnel" of the MRI. That helped me to be completely at ease and and at peace.  I wish I could say the same for the 2nd song that played...I couldn't really understand it very well, but what I could hear was not quite as calming, and I was happy when it and the MRI was over.  Then when I went through the 2nd MRI, the same playlist came up. I got to listen to "I Speak Jesus" again, followed by the same song I didn't like, but all in all I knew that Jesus was with me and that was a great comfort.  Soon it was over and I was back on my way home. I still do not know the results of the tests, but will find out next week. Praying for something that can be helped without surgery.

Meanwhile this week we noticed that our son's truck had a damaged tail light. He said he backed into a tree accidentally and cracked it.  Well, hubby said he wanted to so something to surprise him so he ordered and new tail light for the truck online. He was like a little kid wanting to surprise our son and wouldn't tell him about it until it came in the mail. 

It finally came, and we took it over to his house and together they figured out how to remove the old and replace it with the new light:

And the best part was, it worked!!! Yes, he was surprised, and very thankful. He stays so busy with Dixie Cottage that he doesn't have time to deal with things like that, so it was a blessing...and I think my hubby was blessed as well in doing this special little surprise.

Now these next pictures are going to scare you. An alien has taken over our house (and my body!).  First off, I think you may remember that I told you HERE last week that I had to take a test for sleep apnea. Well, the results came in finally, and guess what? I failed! Or maybe I passed, depending upon which way you want to look at it. I DO have sleep apnea.  They said I stopped breathing 48 times in one night. That doesn't sound good, does it?  No, it doesn't sound good to me either.  And so, I received a phone call from the CPAP machine company saying they received the order from my Doctor and the approval from my insurance to bring me a CPAP machine and show me how to use it. Great. Thanks. Just what I wanted. NOT! Remember I said something about being claustrophobic? Yeah, well...they assured me that these new machines don't cover the whole mouth and nose, just a little tube under the nostrils, etc., etc. blah blah blah. I asked about the new thing you see advertised on TV where they actually surgically install a sleep apnea control system into your body...so you don't have to wear this mask stuff...well, in order to "qualify for that", you have to do this other first and see just how badly you need it.

So here I am folks...aren't I beautiful? Oh, btw, I also got a perm this week in my hair. It's supposed to be just a body perm, but that body sure is kinky curly! LOL.  The only good thing is the mask thingy doesn't pack my hair down too much. My hair just springs right back up and out in every direction! LOL.

This is what I think about that...LOL....

So I received this yesterday afternoon, and realized I really didn't have a good place to put it at night.

Remember this bedside table from last Tuesday's Tuesday 4 post about our home?, Well, that little round 3 legged table isn't really sturdy enough or big enough to hold a CPAP machine and all the other paraphernalia that goes along with it. So what to do?

I guess it's a good thing our son owns a store that sells furniture.  I called him up (actually I spoke to Rose first and told her my dilemma, and she explained it so sweetly to Benton)...I knew there was a night stand at the store that would probably fit perfectly in that spot, but it goes with a complete bedroom set and I didn't think he'd want to break up the set...but...before I could even offer to pay for it they had it loaded up in their truck and brought it over to us last evening:
And there it is! Complete with the CPap machine.  It fit perfectly!! 
So, how did I do last night? Well...let's just say it's going to take some major getting used to sleeping with this thing on.  I told my hubby he may want to wear blinders so he isn't shocked when he rolls over and looks at me during the night with that thing on my head! Thankfully it is very quiet, so there's no noise to disturb him, but sleeping with an alien might take some getting used to! LOL.

Now here's some sweet pictures.  While we were setting this thing up in the bedroom, their doggy Sugar came inside the bedroom and laid down on the rug at the end of our bed. Normally when the puppies come over we have the bedroom door shut so the doggies don't go exploring too far and get into trouble. But last night the door was wide open, and Sugar found a comfortable spot on this rug and made herself quite at home.
(excuse the mess on the bed...we were in transition here...)
When her Daddy said it was time to go home, this is what she did:

She was so sweet...about made me want to say just let her stay here...but of course they would never do that...they are quite attached to one another. Her sister Spice was taking advantage of this time and exploring all the rest of the house where we had forgotten to close any other doors.  But she didn't get into any trouble. They really are very sweet grandpups.

Okay, I think that's enough for one day. 

I am so very thankful for God's watchcare over me this past week. I love the ways He took care of every situation, and I am trusting Him to take care of my shoulder and back issues in a positive way.

Here's the lyrics to that song, "I Speak Jesus", in case you want to go back and play it again and sing along:
I just wanna speak the name of JesusOver every heart and every mind'Cause I know there is peace within Your presenceI speak Jesus
I just wanna speak the name of Jesus'Til every dark addiction starts to breakDeclaring there is hope and there is freedomI speak Jesus
'Cause Your name is powerYour name is healingYour name is lifeBreak every strongholdShine through the shadowsBurn like a fire
I just wanna speak the name of JesusOver fear and all anxietyTo every soul held captive by depressionI speak Jesus
'Cause Your name is powerYour name is healingYour name is lifeBreak every strongholdShine through the shadowsBurn like the fire
Shout Jesus from the mountainsJesus in the streetsJesus in the darkness over every enemyJesus for my familyI speak the holy nameJesus, oh
Shout Jesus from the mountainsJesus in the streetsJesus in the darkness over every enemyJesus for my familyI speak the holy nameJesus (Jesus)
'Cause Your name is powerYour name is healingYour name is lifeBreak every strongholdShine through the shadowsBurn like a fire
Your name is power (Your name is power)Your name is healing (Your name is healing)Your name is life (You are my life)Break every stronghold (break every stronghold)Shine through the shadowsBurn like a fire
I just wanna speak the name of JesusOver every heart and every mind'Cause I know there is peace within Your presenceI speak Jesus
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Jesse Reeves / Dustin Smith / Raina Patt / Kristen Dutton / Carlene Prince / Abigail Benton
I Speak Jesus lyrics © Integrity's Praise! Music, Here Be Lions Publishing


Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Wednesday Treasures...From Still Waters Pond

Happy Wednesday evening! Sorry I didn't get around to posting anything earlier today, but, well, the day got away from me. Spent the morning at Dixie Cottage, which was kind of a slow morning...hopefully once we get over the "hump" of "hump day", business will pick back up. We are still in the post-Christmas slump, but spring is on the way and hopefully people will decide to get out and do some shopping again soon!

This sign hangs in the store...but I will apply it to my Wednesday Treasures for today from the porch overlooking  Still Waters Pond...

Actually these pictures were, for the most part, taken yesterday afternoon, when it was a delightful sunny and warm 69  degrees after an early morning start around 39 degrees...so I decided to sit outside on the swing and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine...
(the mug says "Stand still and consider the wondrous works of God..." Job 37:14, and so I sat still and considered the beauty around me...all wondrous works of God. 

It was rather extra pleasant because I had inadvertently left my cell phone at Dixie Cottage yesterday, so I had nothing else to distract me and I could actually sit and listen to the sounds of nature and perhaps even hear God's voice in the whispers of the breeze around me. 
Thankfully I still have my "real camera" with a zoom lens, because in the distance I could see some kind of action down in the cove around the bend of the pond...

Mr. and Mrs. Sand Hill Crane were being rather close and intimate, or so it would seem...

Thankfully with my zoom lens I could see them, but hopefully they couldn't see me...yet...

It was so pleasant just to sit there and observe God's creation in their natural state, without concern about man or other enemies surrounding them...

This will give you a better glimpse of where they were...

But soon their actions changed, and they may have caught my scent or saw my movements, because soon they started moving more in my direction...

And so I quickly hurried up on the back porch as they made their way around the bend and up onto the shore. You can see that it was a bright sunny afternoon, so the pictures are not as clear because the color kind of gets washed out by the sunshine...

Here they come! They are seemingly unafraid of me, although at first they started to shy away when they could actually see me, but I started talking softly to them and they came up on the lawn and started eating some birdseed on the ground.

I stayed up on the porch and tried to be inconspicuous so they would come on up ...

You will notice with Sand Hill Cranes that one will usually stand guard while the other eats...

He keeps a watchful eye out for predators or nosey humans...

It was a delightful time of watching them enjoy their afternoon snack and talking softly to them...I love that they seem to trust me somewhat...

But soon I went back inside and they headed back into the pond and over to the island where they usually roost for the night...

However, a little later I noticed that the Cranes were not our only visitors on the shore...

There were four Canada Geese walking along the shore line nibbling at whatever they found in the muddy beach (yes, this pond has a mucky, muddy bottom...no pretty white sand here, but it seems to be teeming with life for the waterfowl and other birds, so that's fine with me...

A little blurry, but it was getting darker and the camera doesn't focus well in the dusk...

And then when I woke up this morning and looked outside what did I see?  Ah! Mr. Bluebird on the birdhouse! And it appears that he and Mrs. Bluebird have started bringing things for nesting in the house already! I am excited to know that perhaps we will be watching another bluebird family develop and grow here! Such a joy to behold!

Isn't he beautiful?  

Oh, and the geese were back out there this morning too!

I had stepped outside to fill the birdfeeders and didn't realize they were there, but they saw me and started getting nervous and soon were honking at each other to get ready to take flight...

And this is the last view I had of them...yep, I missed their actual flight, but you can see their takeoff wake in the water below:

Such a lovely way to start the day!

Oh, I told you HERE last week about our new Ladies' Bible Study in the book of Acts. I mentioned to you about finding my "one Word" LISTEN mentioned already in the beginning of our study guide. Well, this week it happened again...here is a quote from the lesson:

"Acts is a true story. A good story. I pray the Holy Spirit will use this story to intersect with your story and awaken you to see Him at work today!   "Lord, I need Your Holy Spirit to guide me as I study Acts. Help me to learn what it means to sit at Your feet and listen. Help me to apply these ancient truths in my modern context. I can't do it without You. Amen."

I love it when God brings a plan together, don't you?

Well folks, that's it for tonight. I hope your Wednesday has been filled with special treasures as well.
Good Night.


Monday, January 23, 2023

Tuesday 4...Home Sweet Home

a 1939 Living Room


Home Sweet Home

Welcome once again to Toni Taddeo's Tuesday 4, where we hope you will stretch your mind, your imagination and your friendships online by sharing a bit of yourself with others.

This week the subject is Your Home .

1. What kind of home do you have and does it need repair or improvements this year?
We have a manufactured home, which has its advantages and disadvantages. One disadvantage is that it sits up fairly high off the ground, and one has to go up several steps to get to the porch and inside the house. The older we get, the more we realize that soon we will need a ramp to access our home rather than steps. Already we are limited in who we can invite over to visit, as we have some friends who use walkers or canes or have difficulty climbing steps.  I would love to go ahead and add a ramp before we get any older, but it is rather expensive to do so as it needs to be quite long based on the height of the steps.  The ramp needs to be one foot long for every inch in height of the steps. Our steps are at least 48" high, so that means the ramp needs to be at least 48 feet long! That's a lot of ramp to build!

Advantages are that once you are inside, everything is very convenient and we do enjoy the floor plan of our home. We have three bedrooms, and actually there are three bathrooms, because our Master Bath is divided into two separate bathrooms! One has a sink, toilet and a shower. The other has a sink, toilet and a garden tub! Very handy for hubby and I to each have our own bathroom in our bedroom! That was a bonus we did not expect when we looked at this home! The other bathroom is on the other side of the house where the guest bedroom and our son Scott's bedroom is (although he no longer lives here). Our house also has a great room (living/dining combo), and a little den, a.k.a. "My Room with a View".  The kitchen is large and has an island with a breakfast bar top, which never gets used for breakfast. LOL.
   As far as improvements go, we just did the most major improvement we can manage for now...replacing the carpet with vinyl plank flooring in the great room, den, and master bedroom. We are enjoying that very much, as the carpet really needed to be replaced.
Master Bedroom

Living room (Great Room)

Den (My Room With A View)

2. How do you accessorize your home inside and out? Plants, art, books, wall hangings, maybe music in the background?

Oh jeepers,  my home is a mixture of old and older, family heirlooms...yes, there are books, wall hangings...not many plants in the house...This is the extent of the current plants inside...a blooming amaryllis, an amaryllis plant from last year that might decide to grow but I probably need to take it outside and plant it in the spring, and a Christmas cactus that has stopped blooming for the season.

I have posted many photos throughout the years of the furnishings and items in our home that have meaning to me.  Most everything we have came from someone special to us and so therefore we keep it. I teasingly but lovingly call our home the family "museum". 

3. What objects reside on your coffee table? Night stand? Side tables? Kitchen/Dining table?
Our coffee table currently.

My bedside table currently has an alarm clock, a box of kleenex, a fingernail file, some eye drops and a flashlight. There is a lamp that doesn't work, but it's too pretty not to keep it. Just needs a new electrical fixture for the lightbulb...one of those "projects" on the to do list.  Baby Elva's cradle is close by my bed. Lily Grace also sleeps there at night, but she's off playing with her friends right now. LOL.

This is the table in the foyer. (below) There is a guest book under that basket. If you come to visit, I would love for you to sign my guest book. I think I forgot to ask the last few visitors, so you need to come back and sign it! LOL. (Terri, Linda, you know who you are). The basket has cards in it that are waiting to be mailed out to church members for their birthdays. I write them all out at the beginning of the month, but don't mail them until a few days before the actual birthdate, so they wait their turn in the basket. This is a little ministry that I volunteer to do for our church.  
Our son painted the sign for our last home that was in the woods, but it still works for this home. It says: "Welcome to our neck of the woods...where life is good. Fresh Air, Star Gazing, Quiet Spaces".  I wanted him to paint a new one when we moved here that said "Welcome to Still Waters Pond...Where life is good, etc...."  He said someday when he has some time...LOL. I guess I'll stick with this sign and be thankful.

This is another little coffee table, a.k.a. a bench. Our son built this for me a few years ago. Our sweet DIL made the sign for me that says "He leads me beside the still waters" for Christmas last year. The chess board was built by my father many years ago for my hubby.  There are puzzles to put together when anyone wants to stay around awhile...and there is a game of Yahtzee and some Dominoes on this table...because we just played those with our kids the other evening when they brought some pulled pork over for dinner and stayed to play games!

When it comes to the dining table, it depends on the season/holiday/occasion as to what might be found there, but what I like to find there most of all is my precious family, gathered round the table for any kind of meal. This picture was last Father's Day, I think...hence the hamburgers, corn on the cob,  etc.,  We were very casual with paper plates.  But I can dress it it on occasion as well...

(another view from last year Father's day...)

Christmas Dinner 2022 (below)

4. Do you like your kitchen organized and with counters cleared off or do you prefer to have the things you use often out on counters? Do you mind what some might see as clutter or do you hate having to dig out tools and appliances when it comes time to use them? and prefer to have them within easy reach?

above : a 1940's Kitchen.   Oh, I love the look of that 1940's kitchen above! I actually once lived in a house that had the white metal cabinets like that, with a large farmhouse sink. I loved it so much!
There is a picture of it in  THIS LINK https://pamelasopenwindow.blogspot.com/2017/04/interesting-places-ive-lived-story-of.html That is a fun story that I think you will enjoy reading if you haven't before.

To answer the questions in #4 above, 
a. Do you like your kitchen organized and with counters cleared off or do you prefer to have the things you use often out on counters?  This is my main kitchen counter beside the stove. As you can see, I have the toaster oven, coffee pot and hot water pot, a crock of cooking utensils and knives all sitting out on the counter.  I won't show you the other side by the sink, because it needs to be cleaned off first. LOL. 

B.  Do you mind what some might see as clutter or do you hate having to dig out tools and appliances when it comes time to use them? and prefer to have them within easy reach?

Well, I really don't mind what others might see as clutter. This is my kitchen, and I have it arranged to what works best for me. I do have things like my mixer and crock pot and other big items stashed away in a cabinet. What you see above is pretty much what I leave out, plus on the other side is my electric can opener. My kitchen is organized for my use. Spices and baking things and cooking utensils are near the stove in cupboards. Serving dishes and plates and glasses are kept in another area. Coffee/Tea mugs are kept above the coffee pot. Pots and pans are in cupboards below and beside the stove.  

This is my favorite counter/cabinet, where I can decorate for each season. Dishes are all stored in the cabinets above and below.

This is an old picture below from last year, but it is a glimpse at the island counter, where the sink is...and the dish drainer because we no longer have a dishwasher. I do keep the dish drainer on the counter because we use it for every meal. 

This is also an old picture, but the island is where the Memorial Garden Rose is displayed when it blooms, next to the picture of our son Matthew.  The rosebush hasn't bloomed in a while, I guess I need to trim it back and fertilize it, when the cold weather goes away.  

And so thus ends another episode of Tuesday 4.  Every week is a group of four different questions about different topics. I hope you enjoyed this week! 

Oh, and regarding our home, one of the BEST parts of it is our Still Waters Pond. We enjoy so much the views we see from the back porch overlooking the pond. It's never exactly the same. There are all kinds of birds, as I've shown you frequently. And then there are the sunsets.  

This was the view last night: (Sunday night)

And here's the view from tonight, same time and place. (Monday night).

God is the Master Designer of our beautiful world around us. He loves to display His masterpieces for us each night. No two are ever the same.
And He is the Master Designer of our home as well. Not just the physical house itself, but the love that dwells within the walls of this home. 

Here's some thoughts from God's Word about our homes...

"For every house is built by someone, but He who built all things is God."
Hebrews 3:4

Matthew 7:24-27
24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.
26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”

Proverbs 24:3-4
"3 Through wisdom a house is built,
And by understanding it is established;
4 By knowledge the rooms are filled
With all precious and pleasant riches."

So dear friends, from my house to yours,
Y'all come!

Good night and God bless you all.

Go visit our other Tuesday 4 friends HERE