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Archive for the ‘joy’ Category

     Today has been one of those lazy, do nothing and enjoy it kind of days.  Those are few and far between…but, so very necessary for the soul to rest and build up strength to do what must be done every other day of the week. 

      It has been cold and wet.  We woke up this morning to a growing blanket of fluffy white snow…the first of the season, to lightly coat the ground.  Of course, it did not stay there because the ground is not frozen yet…so, the warmth of the earth melted the brilliant, white snow early in the day.  This is just a mini preview of what is to come in the next few weeks.

       The snow brought joy to my child’s face…and, a look of acceptance to mine 🙂  Now is the time to contemplate making a nice homemade, chunky sort of comfort meal…like maybe a hot, hearty chicken noodle soup with homemade dumplings…or maybe a rich, smooth, smoky pea soup, or possibly a filling fall harvest kind of soup with some happy orange carrots, and some limey green cabbage surrounding floating chunks of the all american staple of potatoes in a nice rich broth of ham pieces or some pieces of bacon. However, this is work…and, cannot stand alone.  One must complement the meal with some fresh- from- the- oven homemade doughy, buttery rolls.  This is the treat that we offer ourselves when the reality of 6 months of cold, wet, dark and dreary winter comes sneaking upon us.  Oh, if that sounds ominous…then you will have to come back on another day when the snow is cherished and given glory…just not today when i have to grow to appreciate it’s beauty.

       Golly, you will just have to check back in a few weeks, when i paint the picture of a cheery morning; when the snow crystals sparkle in the sunlight and underscore the weight of the evergreen branches that bow under the weight of the heavy flakes of snow that have fallen overnight, much to our surprise.  Then you will see that the human spirit is flexible and has the wisdom to recognize all of the gifts in life. 

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         Did you ever go to a wedding and just observe the Bride and the Groom closely?  Today, i did just that very thing.  Oh, to be sure…the Bride was beautiful and full of smiles; and she looked the picture of what a Bride should look like.  Youth, beauty, joy and excitement poured forth from her face as she, who is normally very shy, looked everyone in the eye and took her vows.  This was her testiment to her pledge of love and commitment.

          The Groom also looked young and full of love and pride in the bride of his choosing.  There were awkward moments in the ceremony…such as a very loud train rumbling by the church…just as the bride was speaking her vows. Then, they did some wonderfully, unique things in their ceremony.  They took communion during the ceremony which was lovely.  The poor bride got a larger piece of the bread put into her mouth by her groom; which took her several minutes to chew and swallow…which caused her to be somewhat embarassed and caused some good natured laughter in the crowd.

          Part of the unique ceremony took place when the bride was given in marriage by her father to her groom; at that point…the bride and groom took the elevated platform in the front of the church; and the minister then, came out into the congregation and stood with his back towards the back of the church…he faced the bride and groom; who stood facing the spectators.  This viewpoint gave the advantage of watching the bride and groom as they spoke their vows, lit the candles, and smiled into each other’s eyes as they whispered affectionetly to one another.  Then, the groom played the guitar while one of his groomsmen sang a tribute to their love for one another.

           All in all, it was a trusting, loving, innocent step into the future as husband and wife…not knowing what the future holds for them…just knowing that they were taking the beginning step forward, together!  Hopeful for a lifetime journey.

        

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       Bye Bye September…tomorrow is October…Fall is truly here and making it’s presence know.  That only leaves one more season left this year…and it isn’t going to be pretty what with the rising cost of living… I hate to see winter come.  With any luck, winter will be mild. 

        With all of the financial uncertainty hanging over the United States…thinking about heating homes is the last thing anyone wants to do.  Yet, i can’t help but admire the beauty that is Fall.  The golden yellow, the burnt oranges, the flaming reds and the burnished brown of the leaves as they glisten in the mellow fall temperatures.  The evenings are pleasantly cool enough to be enjoyed and yet not bothersome enough to turn on the furnace.  This is the beauty of fall.  Reaping the bounty of the earth’s growing season and preparing it for the winter.  It is all a gift. 

        Even the beauty of the first heavy snow fall as it coats the trees and the ground with it’s sparkling diamond dust is a work of art.  It is knowing that it wont be the last snowfall that wears on the novelty of it all…calculating the financial cost of removing all of that frosty diamond dust!  OH well, it is time to enjoy the moment.

        Time to walk in the leaves, smell the warm earth, gaze upon the fall flowers in a final burst of color…stand around a roaring campfire…heat up some tarty spiced apple cider…roast a few dogs over the open flame and stare at the glittering silver white stars as they twinkle in the deep blue black of the night sky.  This is a moment to remember and to treasure.  Bye Bye September!

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        It has been planted in my yard for a good many years now.  It is beautiful in full bloom…my Rose of Sharon.  The bush is full and round with pregnant buds; standing about 7 feet tall.  The leaves are an interesting shape..somewhat oak leafish but smaller in size.  They are green and when the flower buds begin to swell…it takes a few weeks to realize their full birth.  First they appear as small, hard, green buds; then, amazingly they start to appear white and twisted; similar in shape to a coned, morning glory flower bud, as it twists itself fully open.  It is all the more miraculous when you remember that only months ago…it stood proudly, looking for all the world like a dead, wooden monument to the life it had lived the year before.

         On this Rose of Sharon bush…the flower buds turn a deep shade of raspberry, in color.  When the flower petals reveal themselves…they open to a fluttery, fluted funnel.  Each petal eagerly overlaps the other to make them appear almost as if they are sculpted with those decorative sissors that make scalloped edges.  I have decided to expand the Rose of Sharon palette…i have added a light, lilac Rose of Sharon to the yard. 

         Together, they will be a show stopper in August when they tend to bloom…lasting for weeks with their dedication to painting the yard with their strong, visual presence with splashes of color.  The center of the Rose of Sharon is very similar in design to the hibiscus.  There is a long, protruding, white, bumpy center stamen, that contrasts with it’s glorious color.  On each of the colored petals are veins of a darker hue, than the petal, which just adds depth to the pretty picture. 

          It is with a sorrowful acceptance, that i tell you there is no hypnotic perfume from these beautiful flowers…their grace and attraction is in their butterfly shaped petals that flutter in the breeze.  That breeze that has been pleasantly scented by my other seductive collection of flowers such as the Stargazer, Oriental Lillies.  It sweetly spices the air with it’s signature scent.  It is like no other scented flower to my way of thinking.  It calls to the senses; and, adds to the nightime mystery that is my flower garden.  It has a tranquilizer effect for those who take the time to embrace the enveloping sweetness.

        One year, I remember mistakenly taking my vacation during their bloom time…and mourned the loss all year long.  It is something to nibble on…the feasting of the senses in late July/early August; when the Stargazers set out to stun the world with their shortlived appearance.  I give them their due…they are stunning if not a bit dominant during their show time.

          The smell is so wonderfully uplifting that you want to bottle it; so that you can capture the moment in time…it truly elevates the human mood to enter into the fragrance zone.  The touch of the petals is so soft and cool to the touch that you actually can’t stop yourself from gently rubbing its petals against the skin of your fingers.  The sight of the large pink and fushia, star- shaped flower petals, brings the awareness of the scent to your memory, moments before you actually indulge yourself with the smell.  Truly, if it could be bottled…no man would be able to resist it’s draw to the woman who wears it; it is that powerful.

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      So today was a great day.  After a very long, work filled week; we took a family day.  We went out for a ride to another local town.  We went to lunch and then as a family we went shopping.  My hubby found something that he has said he wanted for years.  We splurged on ourselves for once…not something we often do.

         The thing that has often been a subject of my husband’s desire?  Well, it was a down filled mattress topper.  That was a bit pricey…but hey, he has wanted one for years…and since we can’t afford a new bed…this was the next best thing. (more…)

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      Regis Philbin has received an Emmy lifetime achievement award for his 50 years of entertainment on television.  Regis has been a staple in an industry that is famous for chewing up and spitting out performers.  His personality is a lovable mix of charm, crustiness and an entertaining sense of humor.  (more…)

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          Actress Jessica Alba has given birth to daughter Honor Marie Warren.  Jessica and Cash Warren were married in a courthouse ceremony quietly on May 19th.  Together they celebrated the birth of their daughter with joy on June 07, 2008.   Congratulations to the new family, Happy Birthday, Honor! 

           There is always a paparazzi rush trying to get the first photo shots…please don’t endanger anyone trying to get the first baby photos, photographers and media news outlets!!!

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         Today was just a wildly, eventful day…a aero-med helicopter crashed into a major hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan and miraculously, no one was killed.  

          It was announced that Clay Aiken, a gifted singer, is going to be a father (congratulations Clay).  

          And, the wonderfully talented Harvey Korman (from the Carol Burnett television show fame) who brought such joy to the world, died today.   

         Last but not least, the Texas Supreme Court ordered the  450 sect children returned, to their parents, that the Child Protective Services removed from their families due to allegations of sexual abuse of minor children.   The state just was not able to prove the claim of wide-spread abuse  of the 450 children.

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         Last night’s competition on dancing with the stars was outstanding.  The group dance that began the show was awesome to see.  The teamwork and genuine joy of working together for these three competitor teams was obvious to see.  They like each other…they really like each other.  When the individual dances began, Kristi and her partner Mark set a standard that looked impossible to beat.  I think to myself as i watched it….the Gucch has got it!  The showman in her just can’t help but ooze through her pores.  But, she competes with style not with a mean bone in her body.

       Then Jason and Edyta started their dance and it was fireworks from the beginning.  Boom, there they were…somehow though, i don’t know how it happened…they both seemed to have costume malfunctions…they each “lost” pieces of clothing!  LOL The song was hot and so was the dance. 

          Then, right before Christian and Cheryl began their dance; Samantha was awkwardly interviewing Jason.  She made references to the media buzz surrounding Christian and Jason’s newfound friendship.  Jason with a wry grin said, that was last week!  🙂  His sense of humor comes through.  I loved seeing him with his children.

          Christian and Cheryl’s dance was good.  After all, he was not capable of doing the high flying of Kristi and Marks dance, he wasn’t able to lift his partner Cheryl in competitive lifts the way Jason was able to smoothly lift Edyta, but what he did have was Latin blood pumping through his veins and it brought a salsa side dish to the dance.  His surgery is scheduled for Friday.  His dance was good.   I am just afraid with the injury….Kristi’s dance was more advanced; advanced to the point of winning the trophy.

         Of course, it all comes down to the wire with the votes of the fans.  That could, as always, change everything!  This year’s finale was great.  No disappointments here, no matter who you support!

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        Every year on the third sunday of May, is something called, The Blessing Of The Bikes!  It all started about 36 years ago.  The history of the event says, the first year there were 4 bikes and 8 riders who rode their bikes to Baldwin, Michigan in Lake County.  They had a “blessing” on their bikes for safe riding for the year.  The tradition continues each and every year; i know this since, i grew up in a town about 40 minutes south of there on M-37.

       Now days, we hear the sounds of a rip roaring thunder throughout the weekend …usually, starting on Thursday and it continues throughout Sunday; as the bikers, and their bikes, make their way home once again.  It is an awesome thing to behold.  The earth shakes as they pass by. 

         With the economy being depressed by gasoline prices, people are using bikes more for everyday travels when they can.  This lends a different perspective in pocketed areas of our country where saving money isn’t just something nice to do…it is the difference between living and surviving.

       Depending on the weather…the event can be a wonderful kick off for the riding season.  But, if the weather is a little cold (like this weekend) or wet like some other years…it can be a mite uncomfortable.  The smart ones are prepared for any kind of weather.   However, for those who have faith in God …the blessing is not something they wish to pass up simply because of something as changeable as the weather.   Prayer for a fun and safe riding season is almost like having some extra insurance!  🙂

        So, tomorrow, as we try to teach the little ones in church…we will once again…grin and occassionally, plug our ears as we hear the high pitched whine of some, and roar of the others, as they fly by the church building.  We will send up prayers for those who wish to feel the rush of the wind; and, experience the joy of traveling the roads on a hog, chopper, honda, suzuki or whatever form of bike they own. 

        They come from all over the US to get their blessing.  Everyday bikers, plus rich and famous ones too; everyone kicks off the summer riding adventure with joy in their hearts and safety on their minds.   Some bikers take the time to explore Newaygo & Lake County and all of the richness and beauty they have to offer in lakes, rivers, streams and campgrounds. 

       There are those who rave about things such as Cinnamon Rolls the size of a dinner plate at Sally’s Restaurant in White Cloud, Michigan.  It leaves a tasty memory and sounds a bit like a good ole fisherman’s story…but, it is true!  It is a challenge to eat one by yourself… you almost have to share with a friend, or two.  Gotta see it to believe it.  Many take the time to stop in to some of the churchs along the way.  They are welcome!  God bless them all!   http://blessingofthebikes.org/, http://www.lakecountymichigan.com/.

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