What Works for You?

26 Aug garden gates

From the Heart

Louise Gibson



Sometimes it is a dream that keeps us going-
the root of a thought that keeps on growing and growing.
Or, are you motivated by others?
You strive to meet their goals for you.
Just remember, it’s important to yourself be true.
it will only lead to strife.


God created you to be You.
He is the one who gave you talent.
He is the one who gave you life.
When you struggle to be another,
it will only lead to strife.


Trust in the Lord with your whole heart.
He wants the best for you.
When you are doing what you love,
God is saying “Yes” to you.


Don’t let failure define you.
Hold on to your vision.
Ask the Lord to guide you
in making the right decision.


When you are doing what you love,
it excites your inner core.
It energizes creativity
and allows you to do more.


Keep in mind, your biggest cheerleader
in life is you.
Choose a positive attitude in reaching your goals
and watch you dreams come true.



Hummy Hummingbird

25 Aug

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

My husband and I spent a few days this past week in Raleigh, North Carolina visiting family and eating way too much good food. Since we returned home, I have been busy catching up as well as wandering aimlessly.  Fortunately, our guest blogger, Patricia Franklin  sent a story that I am posting today. I feel better missing my posing day if I can share something good. Enjoy- Onisha

Patricia Franklin

A Few Thoughts


I just had a quick story to tell you.  We got home last night and I noticed the hummingbird feeder was out of juice.  I wasn’t going to put any more out, as it draws the hornets and they fight with the hummingbird to get it.  Also, it is getting to the end of the season.  But, I was standing at the patio door this morning, about 6 feet away from the feeder, which hangs right in front of my window over the sink.  Little Hummy came up to the patio window and buzzed around several times right in front of my face.  I was a little startled and thought “Is she trying to tell me something?”  I went about my work in the kitchen and went over to the sink to start the dishes.  She came flying over and was buzzing around the feeder.  I watched her and suddenly she came up to the window over the sink and flew around in front of my face again.  I said to myself, “She really does know where the food comes from, and is telling me she is hungry.”  There are fewer flowers around now, so she is looking for food. Guess she does not mind fighting with the hornets.  I sit outside frequently in my chair next to the feeder, and I know she keeps an eye on it because occasionally another hummingbird will come, and she is immediately there to chase it away.  So I made up some juice and hung it out there. She has been back about six times already today.




I loved this story. I do believe that hummingbirds communicate with us humans. We have had them fly from the feeder to hover in front of us as though saying “thank you.” One summer my husband put his camera on the tripod and took some great photos we treasure. Here is one of them-Onisha




Do you have any hummingbird stories or photos?  If so, it would be fun if you shared them in comments.

My 2016 Mid-West Trip~Part 8

24 Aug

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites


Day 8 (Saturday)

It was a beautiful day for my trip from St. Louis, MO to Indianapolis, IN.  My first stop was to visit the Indiana Transportation Museum located in Noblesville, IN. This museum turned out to be a very small and mostly a collection of neglected rolling stock.  However, there was a tour guide who showed me around, and informed me that much of the museum’s train equipment was in one state of restoration or another. He added that the restoration process was slow going because they did not have that many volunteers to do the work.


I spent a lot of time with Greta trying to find the Rolls-Royce Allison Heritage Trust Museum located on the southwest side of Indianapolis. She kept taking me around in circles that always ended up at the same intersection, in front of a deserted building. I finally found the Rolls-Royce facility, a mile or so down the road, but did not see a museum sign anywhere. I couldn’t find any evidence of it, and I might be wrong, but the museum (if any) might be closed to the public.


Next I headed for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum situated just west of Indianapolis in Speedway, IN.  In order to get to the museum I had to drive through the tunnel, under the speedway racetrack, to the infield where the museum is located.  The museum has a fantastic collection of race cars, many of which have been winners in races at the Indianapolis 500 race, and other races at the speedway, dating from the early 1900s to the present day.


One of the tour guide to saw me taking pictures of the cars and said, “Would you like me to take your picture with one of these race cars?” When I told him I would like that, he said, “Just sit on the bench in front of this one, it is the car Juan Pablo Montoya won the last year’s Indianapolis 500 race with (and $2.5 million).”


I tried to find the World War II Memorial, which is the centerpiece of the World Memorial Plaza in downtown Indianapolis, but Greta kept telling me she couldn’t find a match for the address I had giving her. So, after several tries, I gave up the hunt for today and headed for the motel.


Tonight I treated myself to meal of some really great Outback Stakehouse grilled Pork Chops, garlic mashed potatoes, asparagus and a house salad with ranch dressing on the side. They were some of the best pork chops I’ve had in a long time. Freshly baked bread with lots of butter and Strawberry jam was my desert. Makes my mouth water just thinking about how good it was!


Tomorrow morning I’m heading out early for Louisville, Kentucky.

—–To Be Continued—–



The Light of God

23 Aug

A Time to Live

Melody Hendrix

God made two great lights…  The greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars Genesis 1:16
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness,
only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate,
only love can do that.”
Martin Luther King Jr
“The light of God surrounds me.
The love of God enfolds me.
The power of God protects me.
Wherever I am, God is, and all is well.”
James Dillet Freman
The Light of God copy



I am retired and enjoying life. My hobbies are my 5 grandchildren, son and daughter, and my loving husband. I am a photographer and extreme nature lover. I love spending time in my garden or in the wilderness connected to God my Creator.

Grandmother’s Soup

22 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites


Grandmother and Granddad

I had a higgledy-piggledy education in cooking. Mother taught me, Grandmother taught me, and Dad had strict ideas about what should be done with meat and with beans. I also read books and taught myself. Even now, though, I cannot use a recipe exactly as it is written. I’ve tried. I’m sure some things would turn out better if I could follow, but I have a hard time with rules in any disciple. What I can do is experiment and when I do, I’m able to at least write down what I threw into the mix. I’ve been told I may be what they call a taster. All I know is I’m persnicity. Sometimes that gives me an edge on pleasing other people, but there are people who don’t like anything I cook, so then I get to eat out. I do enjoy being with people and I like a good pizza now and again. That’s something I’ve never mastered at home.

Today I was thinking about soup. Because too much fiber doesn’t set well with me, I had to give up having a big salad for lunch. As a side thought, Bill and I were each making our own salad and the only ingredient they had in common was lettuce and we each liked a different kind of lettuce. I do enjoy soup for lunch and I used to like the canned alphabet soup I fed the kids. I loved Grandmother’s potato soup and the vegetable soup our Mrs. McGregor made in the restaurant my parents owned, so I decided to make my own soups for lunch. I’ve been practicing and although they are not my Grandmother’s or Mrs. McGregor’s soups, I like them very much because they contain only things I like.



Grandmother taught me to make her potato soup. Peel potatoes, cut them up, boil them in water, while boiling, fry half a pound of bacon, make it crisp, then break it up into bacon bits, and add the potatoes in their water. Fry onions in the bacon grease and dump it all into the soup add milk. It was super-delicious. You can guess why I don’t make it that way anymore.


Nowadays I put in canned celery soup, leeks, carrots, cream, and a few other things. It makes me happy and Bill likes it too.

I also make a vegetable soup with Ramen chicken noodle soup as a base. I add frozen peas, grated carrots, a handful of cut-up spinach, chicken broth and home-grown rosemary, oregano, and thyme. I throw in a can of chicken for protein.

There’s one other kind of soup I like and I would love to figure out how to make it someday, but deep in my heart I don’t think I will. For one thing, it would be nigh onto impossible to get the crabs they use in Port Townsend in Puget Sound and I don’t think any other crabs would make the most delicious Crab Bisque I’ve ever eaten. Even the name sounds exotic.

Puget Sound Speed Crabbing



My Love Affair With Disney~Part 1

21 Aug 1


Judy Will


I’ve been in love with all things Disney for about as long as I can remember. I believe the first Disney movie I ever saw was Cinderella – and I was sold! As I grew older, I kept wishing there was some way I could – personally – have a copy of Cinderella and watch it whenever I wanted to! Fast forward to this hi-tech generation, and I have Cinderella on my bookshelf! Of course, I don’t watch it all the time, but it’s there for the watching if I care to. I usually have to do it when Fred is gone!

When we moved down to Florida, it was more-or-less with the intention of either or both of us working for Walt Disney World, so we could visit the parks just any time we wanted to. God may have wanted us down in Florida, but His plans for us did NOT include working at Disney World! And His plans are so much better than ours!

So we content ourselves with annual passes to Disney World. Fred jokingly says they are our Christmas/anniversary/birthday (and any other special event in our lives) gift to each other. They are rather expensive. But we get free parking with them, and we can come and go just any time we want. Sometimes it’s for nothing more than to have a supper meal there. And we consider if we stay about two hours, we consider it a “visit to the park.”

In 1999, we thought it would be fun to keep track of how many times we went to a Disney park during that year (38 times). And we’ve kept on with that tradition. Our peak year was 2005 when we went 64 times! If it’s raining? We don’t go. We know we can go another time.

And on our anniversary each year, we stay at the Shades of Green resort, and go to each of the parks, one each day. So you can see – we REALLY like Disney!

Because we’ve been enamored with Disney for so long, we have quite a bit of Disney memorabilia around our house. And we thoroughly enjoy it all. Our youngest daughter, Janet, worked at a Disney Store once upon a time, and she supplied us with quite a bit of Disney stuff. One of my favorite things she gave us, were figurines of some of the characters from Disney’s 1939 original Fantasia. I enjoyed them so much, that I had a friend (who is a wood worker by trade), fashion a shadow box for them. That box and those figurines now grace a wall in our house. I think they are adorable! Unfortunately, I have broken one of the pieces, but have substituted another Mickey in its place. And another friend who worked for Disney, presented us with “Mickey’s House” snowglobe that rests upon the top of the shadow box.



~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~





What you must kill in order for joy to grow.

20 Aug

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

GardeningA desire to garden exploded in me when I read this:

Why do gardeners go for their hobby with such passion and dedication? I think it is because the creativity never ends. Gardeners are always adding, trimming, forming, watching, and that’s what makes the work fun. Our gardens are our living, ever-changing palette.

What fun! I want to do that, too. But then I remembered what someone told me. Gardening requires work, real work such as consistent efforts to pull out weeds so the flowers can grow.

I should’ve known that—nothing grows without work. I learned that in the weed-filled garden of my own life. And when I went to work, pulling out the weeds, then joy began to blossom.

And like many, the most stubborn weed is the one called doubt. It has to be yanked out. If not, doubt chokes all that tries to grow.

Often that unsightly doubt comes in these three different varieties:

  1. Doubt that God is enough, that He will provide for all our needs. “My God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)
  2. Doubt that God will be with us no matter where life takes us. “Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
  3. Doubt that is the key that opens the door to destructive fear. So we fear things won’t turn out, answers won’t come or solutions won’t arrive. “For I’ve not given you a spirit of fear, but of power, of love and a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

When doubt is pulled out, the garden of life shines with new colors. Peace grows, security blossoms, and hope brings on the fragrance of joy.

What weed-killer are you using for that stubborn doubt?

Source: What you must kill in order for joy to grow. | Janet Perez Eckles

It is Always Too Soon to Quit

19 Aug Dandelions

From the Heart

Louise Gibson

Louise Gibson



Let your dream be bigger than your fear.
Hold on to your vision and persevere.
The fuel for your journey is a spark.
By perseverance the snail reached the ark.


Love always perseveres;
a force strong and true.
It motivates your best interests
and brings out the best in you.


Don’t despise the day of small things.
It is the small thing that forms
the framework of our day.
Keep an attitude of gratitude
as the Lord leads you to do all things His way.


Father Jean Nicholas Grou wrote:
“Little things come daily, hourly, within our reach,
and they are no less calculated to set forward
our growth in holiness than are the greater occasions
which occur but rarely. Moreover, fidelity in trifles,
and an earnest seeking to please God in little matters
is a test of real devotion and love. Let your aim be
to please our dear Lord perfectly in little things.”

It is Good to Give Thanks

18 Aug A photo by Brian Erickson. unsplash.com/photos/rNcSTzp0Xv8

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

During my growing up years, we lived in Orlando, Florida. My parents loved to fish, so most Fridays as soon as my parent’s made it home from work, we loaded the car with fishing gear and headed to the east coast. We would fish all night and most of Saturday.  We usually fished from a pier and late at night when most folks had gone home to sleep, we would often  begin to sing hymns in the evening stillness. Just my family, the moon and the stars. Wonderful memories.

What a beautiful thing, God, to give thanks,
    to sing an anthem to you, the High God!
To announce your love each daybreak,
    sing your faithful presence all through the night,
Accompanied by dulcimer and harp,
    the full-bodied music of strings.

Psalms 92: 1-3

The Message

My 2016 Mid-West Trip~Part 7

17 Aug

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

Day 7 (Friday)

Since most of the museums on today’s list were on the west side of St. Louis I started with the Historic Aircraft Restoration Museum located at the Creve Coeur Airport. I had been unable to find their hours of operation on their website; I called ahead this morning and was told that they were only open on Saturday and Sunday. They also informed me that any other day of the week the museum was only opened to the public with a 24-hour advance appointment, which left me out in the cold. I was a very disappointed as the museum consisted of three hangers which I’m sure houses many beautifully restored airplanes. Maybe next time.


Not too far down the road was the St. Louis Museum of Transportation located in the small community of Twin Oaks. This was a fairly large museum consisting of restored cars, trains, and aircraft. The most interesting item at the museum, as far as I was concerned, was their 1/3 scale train ride. The train was modeled after an early 1900s steam engine with open train cars for passengers that circled a portion of the museum grounds. Everything associated with the train ride was 1/3 scale, including crossing safety bars, flashing lights, railroad crossing signs, and the load & unload station. I took a ride and the little kid in me really enjoyed it.



Next I headed for the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum located in Cahokia, but Greta had a hard time finding it. I reset the location three times for her but she never could get me there. Finally I stopped at a motel and ask for directions, which they printed out for me from MapQuest. I tried to follow the written directions, read the street signs and drive at the same time, but that didn’t work. So I tried a final time to input the location to Greta, and what a surprise, she took me right to it. However, when I got there the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum I saw at that location was a joke! It was one rundown Hanger with a beat-up C-47 sitting out in front with no engines, and they were closed.


(This is the sign on the gate where Greta took me)

When I got home and looked up the museum’s website. I couldn’t understand what had happened. All the photos on their website showed something very different from what I had seen and photographed. There was some information about two museum site locations (hangers), so maybe Greta took me to the other location. Whatever, that doesn’t explain her taking me to the address I had for the museum. Mysteries seem to never cease with Greta. I may have to turn her in for the GPS system on my IPhone.


(This is not the museum location Greta took me to)

Finally I headed for the St. Louis Gateway Arch. I had left visiting the Arch until last because the Internet had said their hours were 8 AM – 10 PM. I have always wanted to ride the elevator up to the top of the Arch, but today it wasn’t going to happen. I had noticed as I came across the bridge, over the Mississippi River, that it looked like there was a lot of construction going on around the base of the Arch. When I pulled into the parking lot I was told that parking was $15, and that Arch tickets might be sold out for the day.


I was a little surprised at this statement, because it was only 4:30 in the afternoon. The parking attendant was very nice and informed me that today the Arch was closing at 6:00 PM and the last tram ride was at 5:45. I hadn’t known I needed to buy a ticket online before I left home, and would have to drive several blocks to the Courthouse to buy a ticket. Even if I was able to get a ticket, the chances would be slim that I could drive to the Courthouse, find a place to park, buy the ticket, and get back to the Arch parking area and walked to the tram location in time. As I was discussing all this with the parking lot attendant, I noticed a group of at least 75 – 100 school children, all dressed in the same uniform, heading for the Arch tram location. Even if both trams were working, I just knew my chances of getting a ride in one of the small 5-person trams would be likely impossible today. That’s when I called it a day and started looking for someplace to have dinner.


After all the frustration of this day, I treated myself to a wonderful dinner at the local Cracker Barrel. I had enjoyed their Grilled Catfish so much a couple nights before that I decided to try their grilled Lemon Pepper Trout tonight. It was wonderful, and the collard greens and carrots were great. Honey on one of their famous buttermilk biscuits was my dessert. Once my tummy was full, I was ready to head for the motel for some TV and a good night’s rest.


—–To Be Continued—–


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