Random Memories of Germany-The Wood Carver

14 Nov

MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I am re-blogging this piece, as it is a wonderful memory we have of Germany.

….Someone told us about a Master Woodcarver in Oberammergau, and insisted that we visit his house/workshop.  Fred was chosen to attend a NATO school in Oberammergau.  So we hired a single friend to stay with the girls in Heidelberg, and I went with Fred to the school.  Again, we stayed in a B&B, and I was able to explore the town while he was in classes at the school.

As I explored, I found the house of the Master Woodcarver.  His wife seemed pleased to have me invite myself to their house, and took me to his workshop, where he was working on one of his creations.  To say I was entralled would be an understatement, for sure!  He could carry on a complete conversation and continue to carve at the same time – without missing a beat or a stroke!

They showed me samples of his work – different sizes and different themes.  They told me that the tourist shops in town had offered him exhorbatant commissions, if he would just allow them to sell his craft/product in their stores.  He rejected them all.  The only time he allowed his product to be in their stores was when he was carving a very large (sometimes life-sized) piece, and needed their large machine to work a particular piece.  Their bargaining chip was – “you can use our equipment, but we get to sell (blank) number of your works in the store.”

I was in love.  I purchased two pieces of his art, and have enjoyed them all these years since.  In later years, when my Mother came for a visit, we took her to Oberammergau, and to the carver’s house.  She purchased another one – a “happy” monk with a beer stein in his hand.  They told us that, the larger the size of the monk, the “happier” he appeared!  I was given that piece when she passed away.

We had dinner in the NATO Club several evenings while on that trip.  While looking around the shop within the Club, I found a wood carving of an eagle – one of my favorite creatures.  And guess who the artisan was!!  That’s right – my favorite Master Woodcarver!  It is now hanging on my wall above the door.

When my best friend came to visit from Panama City, Florida, we took her to Oberammergau, and – of course! – to the woodcarvers house.  The lady of the house told us that he had been commissioned to do two life-sized pieces for a Catholic Church in Panama City!  The next time I visited her, we went to that church to see the statues.  They were magnificent!

So many items we were able to purchase while in Europe, to remind us of our times there, and the places we visited.  But these wood carvings are some of our most favorite pieces and memories.

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

God Said He Will Never Do This…

13 Nov

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged November 13, 2021

November 12, 2021

It seems like a lifetime ago when my good friend and I sat at a park bench while our toddlers played in the sandbox. We shared details of our hectic days and even chatted about stuff that intimidated us.

Are you kidding?” I said, “I could never travel to another country by myself and stay in a hotel alone. No way!”

“I wouldn’t either,” she said.

God was listening. And He was probably smiling. “If they only knew….”

Well, I had no clue that my eyesight would be gone only two years later. I never expected blindness at 31. I never imagined caring for my three little boys with no sight at all.

Eventually, I pushed aside all the never reflections that focused on the negative. Instead, for the decades that followed, I saw the supernatural way in which God erases fear and with the pen of His love, writes faith in our hearts.

That’s why years after that day in the park bench with my friend, my attitude changed. Because of God’s grace, I’m able to travel across the country alone and feel comfortable in hotel rooms by myself.

So…never say never.

Another kind of never.

But you and I need to check out another kind of never. God speaks it. He does so with a divine force. With a mighty strength. With His voice that thunders through the walls of our soul.

Here are five places where He repeats His never promises:

No. 1. When another shocking news strikes and makes you stumble with worry, He will rescue you, “and he will sustain you; he will NEVER let the righteous fall” (Psalm 55:22).

Father, I will count on Your hand that sustains me so I will never fall. I will trust on Your love that surrounds me so I’ll never be defeated.

No. 2. When you fret about the future because your security is shaken. That’s when your thoughts turn to Him and that’s when your lips can echo the psalmist’s words: “My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress; I will NEVER be shaken” (Psalm 62:1-2).

Father, I vow that no matter the situation, the pain or heartache, I will not be shaken. I will stand firm because You are my stronghold and my ever-present help in trouble.

No. 3. If those you love turn their back and fail you. And if you taste the bitterness of rejection, confidence still surrounds you “For the LORD will not reject his people; he will NEVER forsake his inheritance” (Psalm 92:14).

Father, comfort fills me knowing that You never reject me. Even with my sins from the past, the failures of yesterday and flaws that I still have, you still call my name and you still count on me as Your inheritance, one You will never, never forsake or abandon.

No. 4. When the army of adversity attacks you, leaves you confused or discouraged, God has the same never promise for you as He did for Joshua. “No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will NEVER leave you nor forsake you” (Joshua 1:5).

Father, like Joshua, I sometimes feel I’m heading toward unfamiliar territory. I’m about to face unknown dangers and fear I’ll encounter enemies seemingly more powerful and me. But I choose to receive Your promise that no one can stand up against me. You will be with me and no matter what happens at the other side of adversity, you will never leave me.

No. 5. When consolation is nowhere to be found. And your heart hungers for encouragement, and your soul thirsts for reassurance, Jesus declares, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will NEVER go hungry, and he who believes in me will NEVER be thirsty” (John 6:35).

Father, you know my heart, you see my ways and You know also my thoughts. And I wait in expectation for what my heart longs for, you will fill. And what my soul desires, you will satisfy. I drink of Your living water that revives me and gives me fresh hope.

A Question to Ask Yourself

Which of God’s promises will you make your own today?

Janet

______________________________________

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.

www.janetperezeckles.com

2021 Road Tripping to Arkansas-Little River

11 Nov

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

We follow a low carb Keto diet and hotel breakfasts can be iffy, especially in the era of Covid. Before the trip I baked some low carb muffins for my breakfasts. My husband is an eggs and bacon kind of guy, so I practiced cooking a scrambled like egg in my Dash griddle. He approved the taste and texture, and I had a plan, except maybe I forgot to test one thing…

As I made his first on the road breakfast, I added a bit of butter to the griddle to give him some extra flavor. Mistake. Butter on a griddle smokes and my practical husband pointed out that I was going to set off the fire alarm. No more butter on the griddle, lesson learned.

Our destination for this day was Little River Canyon National Preserve near Fort Payne, Alabama. From their website:

Little River is unique because it flows for most of its length atop Lookout Mountain in northeast Alabama. Forested uplands, waterfalls, canyon rims and bluffs, pools, boulders, and sandstone cliffs offer settings for a variety of recreational activities. Natural resources and cultural heritage come together to tell the story of the Preserve, a special place in the Southern Appalachians.

NPS.gov

What a gem! I learned of it from a short blurb in a magazine touting the waterfalls of north east Georgia and was pleased to see that it would fit nicely into our road trip. At the information center we learned the details of the scenic drive and were given a very helpful brochure. Our first stop was a beautiful, handicap accessible waterfall.

I regret not taking more pictures on the 11 mile drive. I really think I did. I have a sneaking suspicion that my compulsive need to delete photos from my camera, after downloading may have come into play. Or, I can go all conspiracy theory and blame their absence on the C.I.A.

The canyon was pretty amazing, not Grand Canyon amazing, but awesome. There were some kayakers but they were so far down, my camera did pick them up.

One stop was an area where eagles were known to soar, but sadly, we didn’t see any.

After we left the Preserve, we made our way to the next stop on our trip, Tuscumbria, Alabama. We chose backroads over interstate highway and we definitely wandered. Bathroom facilities seemed to be non-existent. When we finally arrived in a community with a fast food restaurant, Burger Kind, we exited the car and made a dash for the facilities. Burger King restrooms are not always well maintained but thankfully, this one was. We decided to combine the stop with lunch and were pleasantly surprised with their efficiency.

Back on the road we congratulated ourselves for our stop as we didn’t see any other places or businesses for several miles. Then we began to see large warehouses and an assortment of carpet and flooring manufacturing. Wow, who would have thought so many businesses would be in the middle of nowhere. Then we saw signs for an interstate and it made sense. Perfect access for trucking their goods. On the other side of the interstate was a Bus-ees, a mega gas station with almost anything you can think of to eat, drink or buy just for fun. It was packed with drivers from the interstate! I can testify that But-ees has THE nicest restrooms I have ever had the opportunity to visit. LOL

Photo credit:Flickr

Eventually, we did leave the back roads for the interstate. My ears were weary from the GPS directing us to turn left at the next stop sign then continue on…blah, blah blah. Fortunately, the interstate traffic was minimal and it was a pleasant drive to our nights lodging in Tuscumbria.

Veteran’s Day

I’ve been thinking a lot about veterans this week. I realized how many stories and memories are being lost. I was fortunate that my dad spoke of his WWII service, but as I age, I have so many more questions for him. I only knew one person who served in Korea and I wish I had asked him more about his experiences. Of course, he wasn’t very happy about being called up after being discharged, so while his story wouldn’t necessarily have been positive, it was his story and I wish I knew it. As we honor our Veterans this week, if the opportunity arises, ask them to tell their story.

I'm a winner

After my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience.  Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites,  Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general  “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books  

My 2021 goal is continue to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

2021 Mid-Eastern Road Trip Part 9B

10 Nov

A Slice of Life

Onisha Ellis

Day 9 – 7/20/2021 (Continued)

Across the street from the main entrance to the WV Penitentiary, there in Moundsville, is the Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex, which houses the Delf Norona Museum and is a research center for the Moundsville Adena Burial mound.  This museum displays artifacts related to the history, research, and excavations of the largest Adena burial mound in the area.  This 69-foot high, 295-foot diameter mound is thought to have been constructed in successive stages by the Adena people between 250 BC and 150 BC.

Photo Credit:Bill Lites

The next 65 miles south on US-250 from Moundsville to where I finally picked up I-79 were some of the most beautiful, but adventuresome, stretches of highway I had been on so far during this trip.  It was mile after mile after mile of two-lane highway that wound its way up one side of the mountains and then wound its way down the other side.  I was worn out by the time I arrived at the West Virginia Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) Camp Museum located in Mount Clare, WV.  This museum displays artifacts and exhibits relating the history and effectiveness of the West Virginia CCC camp (just one of 1600, that employed over 3-million men nation-wide) and operated from 1933 to 1942. 

Photo Credit:Bill Lites

Now it was 20 miles south on I-79 to visit the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum (TALA) located in Weston, WV.  The Weston State Hospital was originally authorized as a Kirkbride psychiatric hospital in the 1850s.  However, the need for more room initiated the building of a larger facility, and TALA was built and opened in 1858.  This facility operated until it was closed in 1994 due to patient over-crowding and changes to their patient treatments.  Just try to imagine some of the mental health techniques used on patients in the Mid-1800s.  Very scary!

Photo Credit:Bill Lites

Now I headed southwest 95 miles on I-79 to visit the Craik-Patton House located in Charleston, WV.  This federalist period Greek Revival house was built by James Craik for his wife Juliet in 1834.  They occupied the house until 1858, when Colonel George S. Patton Sr.  purchased it.  Patton lived in the house until his death of wounds suffered during the Civil War in 1864.  The house was moved to its present location in the Danial Boone Park, overlooking the Kanswha River, in 1973 where it was restored to its early 1800s representation.

On the same property there in the Danial Boone Park area, I saw this old log cabin and stopped to check it out.   It turned out to be the Ruffner Log House, built by Joseph Ruffner for his family in 1803 

(‘Rosedale’) and is said to be one of the oldest houses in Kanawha County.  The house survived the Civil War and Ruffner families lived in the house until the last Ruffner descendant died in the late 1960s. The Ruffner house was moved to its current location and refurbished for use as a museum in 1975.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

Now it was time to find my motel, there in Charleston.  Once I found the motel and got checked in, I brought my stuff in from the van and had a shower.  Then I warmed up my leftover Steamers Baked Penne & Sausage and enjoyed that meal again.  Boy, was that good!  I recorded my days activities, of this long day, and was soon asleep.

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 64 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

Being a Bird

8 Nov

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Mockingbird

Mockingbird sings every day

Crown the tree to have his say

Lifts in joy and gathers song

Doesn’t know the world’s all wrong.

Quail

Father quail comes through the fence

Finding seed means no offense

Calls a song to bustling chicks

Bob-white, Bob-white, a happy mix.

Cardinal

Peach brown cardinal looks to see

Where her beloved one must be

When she finds him happy, all

Spring, summer, winter, fall. 

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Thoughts

7 Nov

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

Greetings friends. Judy usually posts on Sunday but she is busily completing an afghan for a friend. If you remember she wrote about her long time delight in afghans and the love that goes into each one she creates.

I have zero skills with crochet or any crafts, but this week, I just happened to have created a tiny video for a Bible verse that is dear to my heart. So many times I just don’t understand life and this verse always brings me peace and confidence. May it do the same for you.

As an FYI, You Tube chooses the video suggestions after this one plays. Does anyone know how to disable that?

2021 Road Tripping to Arkansas

4 Nov

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

Day 1 Scottsboro Alabama

On September 24th my husband and I loaded up our truck and set off from our home in Western North Carolina on a three week road trip to Arkansas. Why Arkansas, you might ask? Well, we had never explored the state and a friend who would join our journey in Arkansas, offered to share her time share week with us.

It was a beautiful day to begin our journey and we chose the slow route on US 76 through Northern Georgia. We decided to stay on back roads once we entered Tennessee, avoiding the traffic and interstate of Chattanooga.

Scottsboro, Alabama boasts a fun store, Unclaimed Baggage. The company buys bulk lots of unclaimed baggage and freight from airlines. Basically one is buying someone else’s clothes and gear. We have been there twice before and have found bargains. On this day, we struck out, but it was a fun break from being on the road.

On previous visits to Unclaimed Baggage we didn’t spend any time in the town of Scottsboro, but this trip we had decided to spend the night. In part so that we could explore and also because we were limiting our daily travel to around 6 hours. After checking into our hotel we were ready to eat. Searching online for a place to have supper, I found a restaurant that looked promising. The phone GPS did a fine job routing us and we arrived with no problems. On the way I was surprised to see how pretty the area was with beautiful Lake Guntersville and distant hills. Hugely different from the dismal original downtown.

Photo Credit created by dji camera at Alabama.travel

I chose tonight’s restaurant due to it’s funky name, 50 Taters and excellent reviews. What a great southern name! My meal goal on this road trip was to eat in as many local establishments as possible. Little did I know how necessary this was going to become. The business began as a food truck specializing in 50 ways to load a baked potato and I wasn’t expecting the huge menu. Another fun thing about this restaurant is our table for two was made from an old Singer sewing machine!

We decided to share a BBQ platter and it was delicious! The wait staff were friendly and fast and seemed happy to be there.

When we finished our meal, we decided to go back to our hotel for an early night. I didn’t want to tire my hubby on our first day of the trip.

November 4, 2021

Last week we drove to South Carolina to deliver chicken soup to a friend. We decided to add a little adventure to the familiar drive along US 76 west to enjoy the delayed Fall foliage. We stopped at the Bull Sluice put in on the Chataooga river and I walked down to the beach.

I was a little disappointed with the amount of color but it was a steep walk down the path to the water and I didn’t trust my ability to make it back up if I went any further.

As I began up the return path, I felt some anxiety. There was no one to help me and my husband definitely should not try to rescue me. As my concern increased, I decided to check my heart rate on my fitness watch. 117. Not bad. I’m ok. I can do this. I began counting my steps, finding that 40 steps was my limit before I needed to rest. And so I made it up the trail, 40 steps at a time.

Afterwards, I reflected on how easy it is to become discouraged. I gained two pounds this week, I lost my cool with someone on Twitter, or when will this pandemic ever end? I need to realize life’s problems can be approached by just taking “40 steps” at a time.

I'm a winner

After my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience.  Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites,  Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general  “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books  

My 2021 goal is continue to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

2021  Mid-Eastern Road Trip Part 9A

3 Nov

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

Day 9 – 7/20/2021

This morning I headed south out of North Lima 9 miles on US-62 to visit the War Vet Museum located in Canfield, OH.  The museum is housed in the restored original home of Comfort S. Mygatt, built in 1809, and is the American Legion Post 177.  It displays historical military artifacts and memorabilia dating from the Civil War period.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

Now I headed south 10 miles on SR-46 to visit the Log House Museum located in Columbiana, OH.  This museum is housed in a log cabin that sits on the site of the first U.S. Post Office in Columbiana, which was established in 1809.  The log cabin was built by Jacob Nessly in 1820 and moved to this location in 1975.  This small museum features 1800s quilts as well as pioneer, Civil War, WWI, and WWII artifacts.

It was another 25 miles south on SR-11 to where I tried to visit the Museum of Ceramics located in East Liverpool, OH but they were closed.  So, I found SR-7 and continued 20 miles south, along the Ohio River, to the Historic Fort Steuben located in Steubenville, OH.  This reconstruction of the 1787 Fort Steuben (built to protect early land surveyors from hostile Indians attacks) is situated on the original site of Fort Steuben, was built in 1987. Visitors can tour the eight buildings that make up the original fort, and get an idea of how the men lived and worked in the wilds of the new Ohio Country (Northwest Territory) during the 18th century.

I got a big surprise when I happened to see a historical marker that said Steubenville was the birthplace of the American singer, actor, and entertainer Dean Martin.  I grew up listening to his songs on the radio, watching him in movies, and laughed at him and Jerry Lewis on his TV show over the years.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

I was really looking forward to visiting the Wheels Gone By automobile collection and the Welsh Classic Car Museum, there in Steubenville, but (Greta my Garmin) couldn’t find either one of them.  That turned out to be a real Bummer!  So, I just headed another 20 miles south on SR-7, skirting the Ohio River, to visit the Sedgwick House Museum located in Martins Ferry, OH.  This museum is housed in what was the Sedgwick family home (built in 1870) and displays rare antiques and artifacts related to the history of Martins Ferry and the surrounding area from the early 1800s.

Photo Credit:Bill Lites

It was only about 5 miles south on SR-7 to where I crossed the Ohio River, and drove into Wheeling, WV to visit the Kruger Street Toy and Model Train Museum.  The museum is housed in the original 1906 Elm Street Elementary School building, and has an amazing collection of dolls, toys, games, and model train layouts that will amaze young and old alike.

As I was leaving Wheeling, I stopped at the WV Independence Hall and discovered that Wheeling is considered the Birthplace of West Virginia and also served as the Civil War Capital of Virginia.   The museum is housed in the original building that was built in 1859 as a Customs House and served many other functions during and after the Civil War. 

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

Now I headed south about 10 miles on SR-7 to visit the West Virginia Penitentiary located in Moundsville, WV.  This prison structure was constructed in 1866 and served as a men’s and women’s prison until 1995.  In the later years of its operation the prison was listed as one of the Top Ten Most Violent Correctional Facilities by the United States Department of Justice.

Photo Credit: Bill Lites

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 64 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

Nature

1 Nov

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Crow

Big black crow 

Strong claws 

Grasp bird-bath-rim.

Blue Jay

Blue Jay on tree dive-bombs

At crow-eye.

Duck, crow!

Blue Jay

Whoosh

Then back the other way,

Duck, crow!

Crow flies away

Blue Jay squawks victory.

Elderberry

Frilly white flowers of elderberry

Tremble in the wind. 

Elderberries stain purple 

Sustain mocking birds

Winemakers covet berries

Homemakers stir into a jam

OTC medicine works for a cold. 

God’s provision.

Wild Weeds

Wild Weeds

With yellow flowers

Which grow into bright orange pods

That burst to show shiny red seeds 

Potato vine leaf a perfect heart

Grapevines heart-shaped too

glowing pink in the setting sun 

DiVoran 

All Pictures by Pixabay

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Oh the Afghans my Fingers Have Worked

31 Oct

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I have mentioned in other musings that I really love to crochet!  I taught myself to crochet, but took lessons to learn to knit.  Unfortunately, nothing I knitted fit!  I could knit to gauge, but when the garment was finished – it still didn’t fit!  It was either too big, or too small.  Just never worked.  So I have done more crocheting than knitting, and have a great pleasure in it.

When I was learning to crochet, one of the main patterns I saw was the “traditional Granny Square” afghan. 

It is made with left-over tidbits of yarn, in no particular pattern or color, but always bordered in black.  While I love the look, I have never made a “traditional” Granny Square afghan.  Perhaps someday….

For some reason, I started making afghans – more for gifts to friends and family than to myself.  Not sure just why, but I remember the first one I made.  We were living in Panama City, Florida (actually Tyndall AFB) and had met a family through our church.  I became very close friends with the wife of the family.  When they were about to move from Panama City back to their hometown, I wanted to do something for them that they could enjoy, and perhaps remember me (our family) when they used it.  I found this pattern and liked it. 

 Lynn and I went to a yarn shop in Panama City to try to match the colors of her couch, which we did.  I purchased a lovely yarn that was 4-ply, worsted weight (size), but was nice and light.  When I finished the afghan, I found that I had nearly enough yarn left to make another one!  And so I did – one for me.  Here is a picture of that afghan.  It sat on the back of our couch for many years – and actually it reminded me of Lynn and her family as much as I had hoped it would remind Lynn of our family.

1987 – Seaford, Virginia – Judy and Janet on our couch – the afghan behind us

And so, I found that I would make an afghan for wedding presents through the years, in this same pattern.  I used many different colors, but the same pattern.  My favorite color pattern was dark chocolate brown down to an off-white or cream color.  I made quite a few of those colors, but have no picture of any of them.  I did find another pattern for a small lap afghan, and had enough brown-tone yarn left to make a couple of small ones in that yarn.  I gave them to our church to give to a mission project we did.

My Aunt Jessie wanted one in that pattern, so I made her one in tones of pink.  I made one of the same colors for our Karen. 

I made one of burgundy shades for our Janet. 

I made one in shades of royal blue for a nephew and his fiancé (no picture).  I made one in cream with a stripe of dark rust to match the couch of my best friend, Sue.

So, you can see I’ve worked a lot of afghans in that pattern.

But not too long ago, I found this pattern in a book.

While I liked the pattern, I wanted to make a smaller afghan for our Karen – sort of a “half” afghan.  Her husband, Brian, likes to sleep in a cold room, so I made a small afghan in just white and aqua just for Karen to cover herself when the room got too cold.  

And so, when I looked at that pattern in the pattern book recently, I thought to myself, “that looks really pretty.” 

But when I purchased the yarn to make it like the picture, I again thought to myself “how can these colors possibly go together???”  But now that I’m working on it, they go together amazingly!  And bordered by white just makes the colors “pop” out!  This one will be a wedding present, as well.

This is such fun!  I am so glad to be able to work these things!  God is good!

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

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