Saturday, July 4, 2015

In Memory

Flowers for Rachel

A Time For Everything

Ecclesiastes 3

There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace. 

Monday, June 8, 2015

Home again

My trip to Esperanza was the best!  Five days of clear blue sky, fresh air and temperatures
 well above 70.  It isn't the least bit difficult to love this place.
First and foremost, I was able to be with our grandkids, see their new home and live as they live for a few days.  The power generator comes on at 7am and goes off at 11pm.  It turns out that it's not an imposition at all.  The generator that runs Esperanza is enormous and fulfills its intent very well.  There are several personal homes for the mission teams of four families, and a couple of interns who live full time on the grounds.  There is beauty wherever I looked and the wildlife is abundant. 
Twice there was a bear near or in the camp. I saw one of them coming along the waterfront. The alerting system works well and three working dogs take care of keeping the bears at bay and away from guests. Barking works well!
Below is a canoe that is no longer in service, but provides a fun place for the children to crawl around on and pretend they are floating in the bay.  Someday I'll hear the story of the hand-hewn canoe.

Sitting on the waters edge, in the sun, the twins are enjoying each others company.

 The middle house is our kids new home.  It was once a float house but now sits nestled next to the mountain that is just behind it. 
There are two boat docks in the area.  One is for fueling up and the other is for overnight boats passing through. 
 The MacLean lodge is a multi roomed building.  It is one of several places visitors can stay, and it's very nice inside and out.  Each of the lodging facilities has hardwood floors, many bathrooms and a living room/kitchen space.  I found Esperanza to be very, very nice! 
One family's home.
 This is the far end of Esperanza where there are more homes and the large woodshop.  The woodshop is quite the place for woodworking and building!  There are new rustic cabins being built and this is where much of the work is started. 
New cabin interior

 Below are three little bunk cabins.  They are rustic, meaning there is no bathroom and you sleep on a bunk.  Still they are very nice! 
 I found my daughter sitting on the dock sharing with a friend.  They were the only ones there at the time and as you can see the backdrop is spectacular. 
 This is the fuel dock.  I watched at fishermen came in with the large vessels, and the appointed attendee for the day rushed to help them.  Fisherman from all around come to Esperanza to rest and prepare for another voyage. 
On Mother's day, our nine year old granddaughter was standing near the ball swing below, and it hit her in the face. Out came her permanent front tooth.  She is fine, now, but of course it's been a bit of an ordeal considering the remote location of Esperanza, and getting her to ER.  The short of it is she will be missing a tooth for a while, but with time and braces her teeth will be moved.  At about eighteen she will get a cap on the "moved into place" tooth to match her other one. 

LilliAnne will have stories to tell about life at Esperanza and so will the rest of the family! 
Traveling to Esperanza was my own adventure, meeting the people that have come around our kids, and getting to know the short term missions team from Cornwall Church in Bellingham was an added gift!  I appreciate all the work that goes in to serving this remote community and have come away with a full heart. 
The Randall family is where they are suppose to be and their choices have proven to be inspiring! of today(6/8/15) the tooth has not come out.  It is going to take a visit back Bellingham to a dentist that knows how to help LilliAnne cope with the procedure.  Prayers appreciated!

Monday, May 18, 2015

New horse and taking a couple weeks away!

A new horse has come to graze in the pasture on the other side of our fence. He caught my attention with his two dark ears and piercing look.  He isn't much to look at but there is personality all the way from his ears to his legs.  He kicks around, notices the birds flying over head and will keep us entertained until the grass is gone!

I will be away for the next two weeks.  I am headed up to Esperanza on the West Coast of Vancouver Island to visit our family.  The kids moved there two weeks ago and you can see here what they are doing.  It is a remote area, only reachable by boat, and after driving a 200 mile gravel road.  I'll be travelling with a missions team from Cornwall Church in Bellingham. The trip from Bellingham takes 13 hours. One leg of the ride is on a ferry boat from the mainland to Vancouver Island.  I won't be a part of the team but instead going to play with the kids and see what Esperanza is all about.  It will be my own adventure and a sweet, sweet time with loved ones.  The missions team is going to put on a Women's Retreat for the local gals who live in and around Nootka Sound.  They say there will be about 80 women attending.  It will be a rich time and I'll have stories to bring back home.

See you soon! 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

In a day....

....there is the joy of having our four year old grandson with us!  He says things like, "Come on Grandpa, lets go find a crawdad!"  And, they do just that. We have a small creek adjacent to our place and it's just the sort of creek that a little boy likes to tramp around in. 

 Our grandson takes off down the driveway while we meander behind.  We like seeing him learn, grow and do the things that little boys like to do in outdoor open spaces.  I might add that all of our grandchildren have the same experiences at our place and the girls like it just as much. 
 Kennady and I walked around the house and found this fully blooming Peony!  This is our third spring in the new place and we have not seen it bloom so robustly before. 
 There is also a patch of these daisy's.  They only bloom in the spring and then are gone. 
  We come upon the Rhododendron.  It is a 45 year old plant and huge.

Professor always comes to the camera and I can't resist!
We have not weeded our rock area but it looks pretty good anyway!  The sticks in the foreground are a maple tree that came from seed.  We haven't the heart to take it out.  It will become large so that must be considered. 
In April I planted these strawberries and they were mostly root at the time.  We didn't lose one and it looks like we'll have some fruit this year!

Our grapes are loaded, finally, after three years of growing!  There will be a grape party in late September or early October at our house!  This is reason to celebrate! 
 Our blueberries are doing very well, too.  They are easy keepers and require very little tending. 
 Do you see that little ground squirrel in the center of the picture?  He makes more mess than three gophers!  His lifespan may be limited if he manages to get caught!  This kind of squirrel makes holes in the ground, lives in the ground and tunnels all over the lawn.  Not a good thing!
  We, like many of you, have difficult things in our lives. We take each day as it comes and are grateful for the simple things, like playing with our grandkids, spending time with the goats, cat and chickens.  Growing a garden and watching fruit come on is a seasonal delight!
What kinds of simple things do you enjoy? 

Friday, May 1, 2015

Bird week!

Bluebirds are not unheard of in the Willamette Valley of  Oregon but they are rare. This pair showed
up yesterday while I was standing at the kitchen sink. The first to fly in was the female and then the male. The male let the female bathe and then he took a turn. 
We have taken measures to attract Bluebirds but this is the first time we have ever had them show up!

Watching the sequence of events was quite thrilling! We have a bluebird house on our driveway and have high hopes this pair claims it before the Starlings do!

Another fascinating bird came to the suet holder.  He is a Flicker, a type of Woodpecker. 
 While the Flicker was chowing down a hummingbird joined the feeding time.  They are quite the contrast between small and large birds!
 And...look who else came visiting!  A female Blue Jay!  They are a large bird!

This little yellow bird showed up late in the day.  I don't know exactly what it is and its mate didn't make an appearance.  Could it be a Warbler? 
We are aware of the beauty that surrounds us and are grateful!   
No matter where any of us live there is plenty of beauty to notice, and much comes in our own front yards.  This week was certainly busy with birds in Beavercreek, Oregon!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Trillium Caskets A Simple Grace

Image result for Trillium caskets

I want to share with you what my nephew, Bruce Petersen, has created and is selling.

Yes, he has designed and produced these beautiful, simple caskets. The workmanship is superb and only the highest grade of supplies are used.  They are shipped, ready to assemble, with instructions that are very clear.  The hard work has been done and assembly is easy.  We have ours stored in their solid boxes, and when they are needed close family will help in putting them together.  When ordering a casket you are directed to choose a symbol of a cross, if you like, and there are many to choose from.

I'll let the web site speak for itself and give you the link.  Take a few moments to follow the additional links added on the web site.  They provide information that may be helpful. 

Here is the link to assembly:  Bruce is the narrator.

This is not meant to be morbid but to allow others to make a choice of how the end of life will be carried out, and to their wishes. 

It's important to me to be prepared and make these things easy for loved ones, when things aren't easy.  Over many years, when family members have passed away, it has been a stress to choose a casket, and now it needn't be that way.

Feel free to contact Bruce or Heidi if you have questions.  Their phone number and email address are on the web site.  And, one more thing....the caskets are very affordable!  That's a very good thing!!
The above photo was taken in our woods, on the farm we loved. 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

A Charmer of a book!

Books written by British authors fascinate me.  If the setting of the book is the British countryside, includes children, animals, flowers, fauna, poetry and art....I'm hooked. This book came to my attention about a year ago, and I just bought it this last week. 
 Where My Wellies Take Clare and Michael Morpurgo
Illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill

 Many of the illustrations are done in pen and ink.  Some are done in just pencil/ink and all are fun to look at. The subjects cover everything from a little girls countryside life on the Essex Coast of England.

Later in life the author set up a charity called Farms for City Children.  The lucky city children spend a week on a farm in Devon and near Gloucestershire.  They wear their wellies and tend to farm chores.  They also have plenty of time to play and explore the countryside.
Written as a childhood scrapbook with poems and pictures. There are some special touches to the pages that engage a child and tickle adults!

A Charmer of a Book! 


Saturday, April 18, 2015

A simple JOY!

Recently(Easter weekend) our house was full of the big and little Grand ones!  We all went to church, ate, read, slept and played together.  It was busy, noisy and delightful!

I didn't begin to get enough pictures but these show the JOY I am talking about! 
What made your week JOY...full?
Until next time,

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


Over the past three weeks our dear friend LaVina has been ill. She was in the hospital for two weeks and in a rehab facility for three days.  After that she went back to the hospital and passed away Friday, April 10th at 8:40 am.  Her husband of fifty seven years sat quietly with her. 

Today we drove up to Willamette National Cemetery in Portland, Oregon and she was buried.  Our pastor prayed and read scripture.  He also talked about LaVina's spirit being with the Lord.  It was a time of comfort and beauty.  This woman loved God, and knew Jesus as her savior. 
We like to think of her now and know she can breath freely.  She had bad lungs since a very early age and underwent the removal of a portion of her right lung before she and Louie were married.

Life is a miracle to me.  We are fragile and we are tough.  Our days are numbered and we can rest in knowing this.  There is peace. 

Thursday we will attend LaVina's memorial service and sing her favorite hymns.  It will be a sweet goodbye and great big "amen" to a life well lived.
In the Sweet By and By
Words by Sanford Bennett 1868
Music by Joseph P. Webster 1868

There’s a land that is fairer than day,
And by faith we can see it afar;
For the Father waits over the way
To prepare us a dwelling place there.
In the sweet by and by,
We shall meet on that beautiful shore;
In the sweet by and by,
We shall meet on that beautiful shore.
We shall sing on that beautiful shore
The melodious songs of the blessed;
And our spirits shall sorrow no more,
Not a sigh for the blessing of rest.
To our bountiful Father above,
We will offer our tribute of praise
For the glorious gift of His love
And the blessings that hallow our days.
Good-bye LaVina!  We love you and will see you again!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Holy Week
Holiday's tend to get cluttered with a list of things to do that blur the meaning of the season.
On my "to do" list is decorating the church with flowers.  It takes over a portion of my focus until it is done, and I am here to report that the largest part of the decorating is done. We also have our family coming to celebrate Easter! This is most exciting!  I've been cooking ahead and feel confident that no one will go hungry.  The beds are ready for the little ones and there are fresh towels in the bathrooms. Eggs are dyed, plastic eggs stuffed and little buckets await the kids egg hunt on Sunday afternoon.   
The children won't arrive until this evening which gives me this afternoon to just be. Sweet!
 I thank God for His gift to all mankind, Jesus.  He lived, He suffered, He died for each one.  He calls us to himself so that we might live in eternity.  I'm thankful for His calling, His love, and personal gift to me.  The scriptures I have read and meditated on this week are from Psalm 139. Take a moment to read it, and insert your name as if it is written to you.
My pastor read this to a very dear friend this week, while we visited her in the hospital. Her face lit up and she took in every word.  She has eternity to look towards, and it is not a small thing.  This is how God speaks to us by using David's words.
The text is taken from the New American Standard Bible on Bible Gateway.

God’s Omnipresence and Omniscience.
A Psalm of David.
139 O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know [a]when I sit down and [b]when I rise up;
You understand my thought from afar.
You [c]scrutinize my [d]path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
4 [e]Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.
You have enclosed me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is too high, I cannot attain to it.
Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in [f]Sheol, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand will lead me,
And Your right hand will lay hold of me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will [g]overwhelm me,
And the light around me will be night,”
12 Even the darkness is not dark [h]to You,
And the night is as bright as the day.
Darkness and light are alike to You.
13 For You formed my [i]inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will give thanks to You, for [j]I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My [k]frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
16 Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.
17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with You.
19 O that You would slay the wicked, O God;
Depart from me, therefore, men of bloodshed.
20 For they speak [l]against You wickedly,
And Your enemies [m]take Your name in vain.
21 Do I not hate those who hate You, O Lord?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?
22 I hate them with the utmost hatred;
They have become my enemies.
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
24 And see if there be any [n]hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.

Happy Easter! He is Risen!
Oregon Fawn Lily
from the Oregon woodland.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Just for fun!

Way back in 1949 a little Christian School opened it's doors in the West Hills of Portland, Oregon.  Today it continues, and many of our family members have attended over the years.  Recently I went to the web site of West Hills Christian School, opened the History page, and found this picture.
It's a bit blurry but not difficult for me or my husband to pick out those we know, and have a good laugh!
Front row, bottom from the right is Danny Lockwood, former President of Multnomah University, Portland, Oregon.
Next to him is my brother Reed, and next to Reed is Dan Whitcher, my husband's cousin.
Second row, second boy on the right is my husband, Jim. Top row, far left is Jim's cousin Jane.
Top row, smack dab in the middle is another of Jim's cousins, Chuck.  My brother and Chuck used to have punching fights quite a bit at this little Christian School!  Everyone else in the picture is memorable, too! 
Don't you just love the style of hair and clothes?  This picture was taken in the Spring of 1958. I remember that t-shirt my brother has on.  It was brown and orange striped and probably not in the dress code for the school! I think the boys were suppose to wear collared shirts and no blue jeans.  The girls had to wear dresses and that continued until 1970. 
If you're at all interested in the school you can take a look here:  West Hills Christian School.
Another "Just For Fun" moment from this week!
Bart found a ladle I had hung on the bird bath. It was full of rain water, and just exactly right for him to drink from. The bird bath is seated on the top of the septic tank, and the area is still "under construction!" The ladle was to water some small pansy's that were planted.  It tickles me when moments like this appear and I have my camera handy!  How about you?
"That was a good drink," said Bart.
I'm thankful for the history of years gone by, and for the little things put in my scope of day to day living! 

Friday, March 20, 2015

"The Earth Laughs in Flowers"

Yellow is a very inviting color and it really pops in our part of the country when the grass, trees and weeds are springing into season.  This year almost everything planted is coming into bloom ahead of schedule.  We are not complaining because we have had many, many beautiful days full of warm sunshine and blue lofty skies. This past week brought back the rain, more than average, to make up for what we haven't gotten since the beginning of the new year. 
I am sharing what is in bloom in our garden and it just so happens that much of it is yellow.

 Yellow Viola
This is a beautiful early bloomer that spreads quickly as a ground cover.  It is said that other early spring flowers can't survive planted with it.  What we have found is that it quickly vanishes after blooming, and ours are in an area we choose not to plant other things in. 

There's never a shortage of these! 
 Our goat, Professor had to get in the photo shoot! 
 He loves me!
 The Forsythia is a bit sparse this year.  We gave it a good cutting and it will fill in over the Summer. Little birds like to nest in this group of Forsythia. 
 Darling Daffodils! And, do you see that gopher mound just next to the top daffodil? Not good!

I like to create potted vignette's around our place.  This is what survived the winter and greets us as we enter our home.  
Ralph Waldo Emerson said: The Earth Laughs in Flowers
I agree and am grateful for the laughter!
Happy Spring!!