Wednesday, April 26, 2017

When the "Loop" Becomes the "Noose"

It's usually just me and my critters here all day, but I come up with the funniest things - well, at least I think they are.  So, I go about my day thinking up these funny little things, working on blog posts, all while talking to myself.  Yes, sometimes I even answer.  (smile).  Here is one example....

I'm not the person who should "be in the know" on things.  Not that I mean to "spill the beans" it's just I get going, a talking away and the next thing you know...I've said something I wasn't supposed to.  

I'm not talking gossip here, I'm talking "oh don't tell anyone, but I just got a new job" type of things.  First thing you know, I run into someone, who knows someone, who knows my friend and I say..."isn't it great she got a new job!"   These types of things.... (loop to noose).

It was while thinking and talking to myself, I came up with the...."when the loop becomes the noose" title to this post.  It has helped me.  Really!  Now, when I think someone is going to lasso me with a loop - I stop and share this quote with them.  Next thing you know, I'm free ranging it again - no lasso for me.  I find I am so much happier, ignorance IS bliss!

I have been working on ME - I'm the only one who can.  I sure am a stubborn old thing, but with much Bible reading and prayer I'm coming along....not with a lasso tho....(smile).  I hope someone finds this as funny as I do and maybe the next time you find yourself in the "loop" make sure it doesn't become the "noose."    

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Monday, April 24, 2017

"I Ain't As Good As I Once Was"

I heard this song the other day, on my way to pick up Lisa.  We went to Water Street Vintage in New London, WI to restock our booth.  I had to laugh at the words, thinking about us....I so wanted to take a picture and post it of us dragging...scooting...sliding...our stuff to our booth....because....we "ain't as good as we once was..."  She wouldn't let me.  It would have been so cute!

Oh how true this song is.  You know, my word of the year is EMBRACE and aging is something I am going to have to try to embrace.  

"I ain't as good as I once was, I got a few years on me know, my how the years have flown, but there was a time back in my prime when I could hold my own...but, I'm as good once as I ever was."  

With that said, I've hired a summer intern to help me with my business, Town Hall Trinkets, LLC.  This will be the year, good Lord willing, that I clean out my old inventory.  I have several people willing to help so that is nice.  

I remember over 25 years ago, when Lisa and I did one of our first antique shows together, there was an older lady watching us carry stuff into our booths.  She said..."girls, you're going to regret that later in life."  As much as we respected Jo Vonnie, she was like 75, of course she couldn't carry in her own inventory, she was old!  We laughed....and kept right on working.  She said that to us many times over the years - oh, why oh, why didn't we listen?  Now, we can hardly carry it in anymore.   "In our prime," Lisa and I would buy out estates and lift heavy pieces of furniture with ease and throw them into a, I can carry, stop, lift in the trailer, drop, use the side to get in, pick it up again and scoot it to the back....waaaaa I'm getting old!  But...."I'm as good once as I ever was!"  I proved that yesterday, lifting out a leather love seat from an estate we bought out.  (Smile)

I "pick" differently now too.  Unless it is a good deal - gone are the days of heavy wardrobes and built in cupboards.  If I can't carry it myself, I don't want to buy it because I won't be able to get it into one of my booths.  I do use a dolly, but lifting it out of a van or truck to the dolly is even challenging. 

I am so blessed with a helpful husband, who helps me!   

So, I will "let" other people into my hoarded mess, because I NEED to clean it out and I need to accept the help.  I will try my hardest to EMBRACE this too.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.   

Monday, April 17, 2017

"You're Lucky You Don't Have to Go To Work, Mom"

My daughter, said this to me yesterday.  "You're lucky you don't have to go to work tomorrow, Mom."  I said "I do have to work tomorrow, all week, 2 nights and even Saturday" - she said, "ya, but not at an office" - I had to laugh.
I "put my time in" at an office too, for 11 years.  I am blessed to be self-employed - but, that by no means, means I don't work.  She knows that.  I was thinking the other day, wow, I have a whole day to myself, to do what I want....I know, right?!?  My brother recently said, "you sure have handled the empty-nest well, you keep yourself busy."  I understood and I took it as the compliment it was meant to be.

I think on my own grandmother, mother - old ladies, still planning their day's, week's and month's activities.  Cooking, baking, planting, sewing, volunteering - busy women, working hard even when they could hardly walk.  They are my heroes, Godly examples of how to live your life to the best of your ability - all while loving and caring for others.

My mom, with her parents, my grandma and grandpa Kincaid.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Friday, April 14, 2017

Jesus - My Son, Our Savior

In preparation for this past week's ladies bible study - "The Women of Easter Week" - I thought about something about Mary, the mother of Jesus, that I hadn't before.  As a mother, it really touched me and I wanted to share it with you.

Mary, was so young when she accepted the role as the mother of the Messiah.  I say accepted because scripture tells us in Luke that the angel of the Lord appeared to her and told her these things that would happen.  Mary then says in Luke 1:38 "And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word." And the angel departed from her.

I can't even imagine what was going through her mind as she was left to wonder how all of this was going to happen.  We know the rest of the Christmas story, it's the living up to the Cross story that I've been thinking on.

After Jesus was born and Mary and Joseph took him to the temple, Simeon said to Mary in Luke 2:34 "And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold this child is set for the fall and rising against many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;  Yea a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also, that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."  Only a mother would know the pierce of a soul that happens when something happens to your child.

Think about Mary, while other mother's where saying..."oh, my son is walking"  or "oh, my son said his first words" or "oh my son ....whatever new stage and steps these babes/toddlers made."  As other mothers were sharing, I wonder if  Mary was wishing she could say, "well, my son is the Messiah."  We don't really know, but as a mother I do know how we share the steps and stages with each other.

Think about Mary, how worried she must have been to lose her child in a huge city.  If you have ever lost sight of yours in a store for a even a few minutes you know how your heart sinks to your stomach.  

Think about Mary when Jesus told her he must leave home and start his ministry.   I know when mine moved out, it was emotional for me.

Think about Mary when she heard of her son fasting for 40 days and nights.  I'm sure she was thinking, he must be so hungry, I'm sure she was worried thinking about him and worried for his health.

Think on how Mary felt when her arrival was announced in Luke 8:20-21 "Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you."  He replied, "My mother and brothers are those who hear God's word and put it into practice."  I know Mary understood HIS role and why He said this, but that had to hurt.  

Think about the fear that she must have felt to know that everyone was trying to arrest her son, charge her son with crimes he did not do.

Think about how she felt as her son appears to the crowd - "crucify him, crucify him!"  Oh I'm sure she could see God's plan unfolding, but that was her son they were chanting about.

Think about Mary, as she saw her son, beaten, bloody and nearly broken walking up to Calvary, Gagulta, to be crucified.  Oh the heart ache - piercing in her soul.  

Think on Mary as she looked at her son hanging on the cross - I'm sure she looked up and saw the babe she nursed, the toddler whom she kissed away the tears over scraped knees, the young lad who wanted to learn how to be a carpenter, the man living his heavenly father's plan and ministry - our savior, her savior - The Messiah.  

I know that God had this plan for a sinful world.  He had to robe himself in flesh, become a man - Jesus - to become our sacrificial lamb - redemption of our sins through his blood.  I understand.  

As a mother, I never thought about this in that way.  How Mary felt as a mother.  Mary, also needed Him as her savior, this plan for her son was her gift as well.  I wrote this today, Good Friday, as a reminder.  This wonderful gift He gave all of us - those that accept him, "those who hear God's word and put it into practice."

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.   

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Monday, April 10, 2017

Mosaic Monday - "Drab to Fab"

This old bed was part of an estate buyout from 2014.  I moved the contents here to the farm and had a huge estate sale in one of my buildings.  This did not sell, it was only $15.  So, when something is that cheap and doesn't sell, I keep it and add it to the project pile.   I was inspired by the curved foot board and the way the middle was framed out.  I knew what I was going to do.  It's not perfect, rather "imperfectly perfect."  I shared the post on my face book page and one of my friends said "well that went from drab to fab."  I couldn't agree more.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Friday, April 7, 2017

Five on Friday - Needle Felting

It was fun to volunteer and teach the Girl Scouts how to needle felt.  I forgot how much I enjoyed felting.  I thought I would share with you some of the projects I have made for my 5 on Friday.  The last two are tiny pins.  I sold all of these a few years back.  

One of my "businesses" - I have several little "cottage" businesses as I have an entrepreneurial  spirit - is called "The Hobby Farm"  Link here: 

I will be teaching a needle felting class this next week.  The project will be 3 felted eggs and you can take them home in a vintage berry basket.  $15.  If interested, please comment below....obviously, local followers....however, I would LOVE to meet some of you!

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Hodge Podge Wednesday

She asks the questions and we answer.  Go to the link, From Across the Pond - Hodge Podge Wednesday:

1. April is Lawn and Garden Month. On a scale of 1-10 what's the current state of your lawn and/or garden. (10=a showpiece, 1=send in the professionals). Tell us about any lawn or garden plans you have for this month.

1 - send in the professionals.  Only, I wouldn't...we live in the country so we don't really have a need to have a showpiece lawn.  Our garden, however is a different story, we try to be more meticulous with that.  Try is the key word here, we start out that way.  

2. "Many things grow in the garden that were never sown there."~Thomas Fuller  What does this quote mean to you?

To me, it reminds me of the parable of the sower.  In a world full of social media outburst of all kinds, it is hard not to let a "seed" you see or read get to you.  If the "seeds" were good and it brought about healing or change - great.  However, some "seeds" are not and you could sit and let them start to grow and cause you to become depressed or bitter.  We need to be careful to guard our hearts and minds - especially our eyes to what we see and read on social media.

3. What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think about God?

The Master, my counselor.

4. If we were chatting in person, how would I know if you were nervous?

Hmmm, I don't really get nervous taking to people, I strike up conversations with strangers every day.  

5. Do you like the color yellow? Would I find any in your home or wardrobe? Daffodils, tulips, roses, sunflowers, day lily, black eyed susan...which yellow bloom on this list is your favorite?

I consider myself a folk artist and I don't dislike any colors.  Sunflowers from that list, but baby chicks and ducks!

6. Flip flops or bare feet?

Bare feet

7. Tell us about any Easter plans, celebrations, or traditions you'll carry out this month.

We do a Sunday School Easter egg hunt.  This year will be different for our family.  One of our daughters and her husband will be in China - yes, China and the other daughter and her husband will have Easter at his parent's house.  So, I plan to make a light lunch for just Al and I.  We are having a lunch together as a family at the end of the month when everyone can be here.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

My sister found a box of old photos and I do remember seeing them before, but not for many years.  I took pictures of the originals.  As I was doing so, I happen to say, "these images are more than mere moments in time."  As I sifted through them, I happen to think how old each family member was at that time in their life.  Did their life at that age parallel with mine.   I tend to do this at every stage of life I enter.  Maybe because I'm the youngest, I'm not sure.  But, as I enter a new stage I often think, well what did Bonnie or Lynn (my oldest sisters) do when they were my age?  How did they handle this or that?  Not that I compare myself - rather prepare myself.  There is a big difference in that.  We each are not served the same "plate" in life - but, how we respond to what we receive is important to take lessons from.  

Here are a few pictures of my mom when she young.  My mom really was beautiful - inside and out.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Quartlery Exams - Working on my Masters

I was sharing recently about how life is a "test" - rather, the trials and obstacles that come our way - I will relate these as exams.  

How do we handle them?  What would our grade be?  The first quarter of 2017 is complete.  Wow, did I face some pretty hard exams.  It was rough, I won't lie. 

As I was sharing this with a friend, I said, "I'm tired of getting F's, I want to get A's on these exams in life."  I have failed in the past because I've given up and just said...F this...sorry, but true.  What can I do differently?  

Then it hit me, I don't just want A's, I want a Master's Degree.   You know, like turning it all over to the Master before I quit or react to life's exams.  Oh a Master's that's it!  That's the answer.  How do I achieve this? 

I need to study for these exams by reading my Bible to search for the answers.  "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."  2 Timothy 2:15  

I need to prepare for these exams by praying before, during and after.  "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God."  Philippians 4:6

Work on letting things go by thinking about what is really important.  "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all ways acknowledge him and he shall direct they paths."   Proverbs 3 5-6

Seek after Godly counsel, learn from the Master and trust in Jesus to "take care of it."  "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace."  Isaiah 9:6

We all graduate from life.  "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after is the judgment:  So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation."  Hebrews 9:27-28.

When my time comes to graduate, however long that may be, I want high marks on my exams.  I want to graduate Summa Cum Laude with my Master's Degree.   

So as each day brings me a new exam, I want to be prepared.  I've been working on myself.  I have found, that at most times during these exams, it would be easier to "sin" my flesh wants to, believe me.  When we had no water for 33 days, all my friends and family were saying..."yell at them" - what good would that do?  It would have felt good to me to do so, but who would have received the glory?  I can tell you that we did get the bill for our new well - guess what?  The company wrote us a message of how they appreciated our patience and reduced the bill by nearly 10%.  I am happy I kept my "flesh" in check and let the "spirit" lead my attitude.  If you know know this is HUGE!  To God be the glory.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Monday, April 3, 2017

Motivational Monday - Navigationally Challenged

I've shared this before, but I am navigationally challenged.  If you have been a passenger of mine, you know this to be true.  I don't know why, but my mind doesn't let me work in "map mode."  

I drove down to Waukesha, by myself, to visit our daughter and son-in-law this past weekend.  Every time we have visited, we took a different way; either by choice or gps.  So, I don't actually know how to get to her house.  Now keep in mind that Waukesha is 25 miles big with 71,700 people.  Ringle is 42 miles big with 1,700 people.  It all seems like a mouse trap to me.  

On the way down, I missed the exit I wanted.  No worries, I told myself, I'll just drive down to the next one, take a right and that should take me to the road I wanted.  It did eventually, but was closed to "local traffic only" - I just drove around the dump trucks....I had to.  On that road I did see some awesome stone barns, so it was scenic.

Once I arrived, I handed the keys to Anna and she drove.  I would rather be a passenger than the driver.  We had a fun 2 days together.  Truthfully, I miss her terribly.  I know they are making a good life for themselves down there and that helps. 

We went thrifting to little towns that surround the Milwaukee and Waukesha areas.  My van is full.  Another little story:  we both love Pho and Anna wanted to check out this restaurant called Pho King (I know it sounds terrible, but funny).  It was the best Pho I've had to date!  I like to make it spicy, so much so, that I sweat while eating it.  Well, this time I was sweating and my face felt hot....oh no, I had the jalapeno oil on my fingers and wiped my face, my lip, pushed up my glasses under my face was red.  So, I went to the bathroom to wash it off.  I ended up with soap in my one eye, jalapeno oil in the other...mascara running...I was a mess!  But the Pho was the best!  (if you know me, things like this happen to me too!)

So, on Saturday late afternoon, with my heart and van full, I headed for home.  Anna said "Mom, do you think you know how to get home?"  I said "well the sun sets in the west, so I'll keep driving north."  I didn't want to tell her how scared I actually was.  I told old Siri "take me home" - another thing about that...she doesn't understand my Wisconsineese...I guess Wisconsinites have an accent...who knew? (smile).  Anyway, I didn't want to go on the interstate.  So after I passed their house a second time (I couldn't stand to stop and ask them for directions) I just keep driving with the sun on the left side of my face.  I did pull into a bank and asked Siri all kinds of "take me to..." none of which were helpful.  I really was almost in tears, but I decided too "embrace" my navigationally challenged self and figure it out.  I did it!  I wasn't that far off the road I wanted to be on - so that was good.  

I actually was laughing at myself on the way home.  I am 1/4 Native American, 1/4 Welch/English/Irish traveler and I am void of any "trappin and trackin" much less any "traveler" genes.  No matter where I go, it's always an adventure.

I guess I say all of this today in my Motivational Monday post so that you too can "embrace" and laugh at yourself at any short comings you may have.  You know, God created each of us with our own special gifts.  We all are good at something and other things maybe not so much.  Don't dwell on what you are NOT good at, rather focus on what you ARE good at.  Don't look at your short comings as negatives, rather turn them into positives.  This hasn't always been easy for me to do.  I tend to be hard on myself.  However, I've learned, through the grace of Christ, that I can be.  I sometimes sing "Peace of God cover me..." that might be what it takes that day to make it to the next.  I might not know how to drive from here to there, but I have learned how to navigate myself to Jesus with my problems.  You can too.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.   

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Mosaic Monday - Needle Felting

This is my first time joining in on Mosaic Monday.  Here are a few pictures of the class I taught with Girl Scouts as part of a Folk Art clinic.  My daughter Anna works for Girl Scouts South East Wisconsin.  That is her and I together in the bottom picture.  I enjoy sharing my love of fiber arts with others - especially kids!

Go to the link Normandy Life, she is one of my new blogging friends from "across the pond."  I enjoy reading her blog.

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.