Welcome! I'm happy and humbled you've stopped by.....Cozy up and follow along as I share my attempts at simple living with you.

Thursday, December 31, 2009


It's that time again when we seek to make New Year resolutions. I don't normally engage in such futile efforts. But this year I've decided to make a resolution that hopefully with God's Grace I will keep.
Recently, I was deeply convicted that I need to make more of an effort to keep my words sweet.....and to use my words as a blessing to others. Ephesians 4:29 tells us Don't use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.
As I have pondered this verse, I realize that it's not only what I say, and how I say it, but it's also my attitude that makes all the difference. It's my attitude that sets the tone, for good or for bad. It's my attitude that can build up someone else or have a positive influence on them. Or perhaps they will see God's light in me and want it for themselves.
Sometimes, as we look around the world and the times in which we live, it can be difficult to stay positive and cheerful. I for one don't care to be around folks who are always negative or who constantly display a negative attitude and/or critical spirit. I certainly don't want to be remembered as the the grouchy grammie, or the crabbie Christian. I want to to be like a breath of fresh air to those around me, remembered by those who know me as a woman of God who always had a kind word, one who was patient with others, and whose love of God shone brightly in a dim world.
So this is the year that I will concentrate on what I say and the attitude I display. But more than that, I will be watching my thoughts. As Joyce Meyer would say, "Where the mind goes, the man follows." But that's a topic for another day.
May all the Glory be His!~
Living Simply and Deliberately

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:2,3

FOTO FRIDAY- Chickadees, Nuthatches and Titmice (or is it Titmouses)

We awoke to another blanket of snow this New Year's Eve morning. And because there wasn't anything pressing to do today, I just enjoyed the morning. While shoveling off the sidewalk (yes I enjoy shoveling-it's a great workout) I noticed that my bird friends were really feeding. And since I had my camera stashed in my pocket, it was a great opportunity to get up close and personal with them. Watching the birds is not only relaxing but a simple way we enjoy God's gift of nature.

And God said, "Let the waters swarm with fish and other life. Let the skies be filled with birds of every kind."
Living Simply and Deliberately,

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Sunday, December 20, 2009


We have had a very hectic weekend! And that's putting it mildly. But before I share the pics of our busy weekend, I just to share this pic of Jack. He celebrated his 2 month birthday on Saturday. He's growing so quickly....gained 3 pounds since his last visit to the doctor. He is such a sweet baby!

On Friday night, we kicked off our Christmas celebration with our first family party. The guests were members of my extended family. We don't buy gifts or exchange names. But we do have a white elephant exchange, some great food and a little fellowship and always some silliness as you can tell by the photos below.

My daughter, SIL, Jack and of course Marzi the Boston

Family Photo

On Saturday, the snow began to fly! But that didn't stop hubbies family from coming to party # 2, with the exception of his sister's family who lives about an hour away. This party is much the same as my family's party with the white elephant exchange as the highlight. I always try to jazz things up with a few surprises like this chaulkboard sign...

"I'm in touch with my inner witch"

and these lovely maxi-pad slippers!

But by the time Sunday rolled around it was time to get busy and clear the foot of snow left behind by mother nature.

Jack's first snow storm

Bubba playing on the tractor-his contribution to the snow removal process
Nothing left to do now but soak in the beauty of the landscape.
Living Simply and deliberately,

Thursday, December 17, 2009

In my last post I told you that nearly all of my Christmas check list was completed with the exception of the family newsletter. Well, I finally got that finished and sent out to friends and family.

Aunt Ruthie, at Sugar Pie Farmhouse, recently encouraged her readers to make everything Merry and Bright for the holidays by taking extra care decorating their homes for the holidays....creating an environment of joy.....lifting the spirits of all who enter. So I've done just that! Here is just a small sampling of what our Merry and Bright looks like! I'm hopeful by sharing photos from around our home that I can bring a little Christmas joy to your home. Enjoy!

Tea Anyone??

We will be hosting two family gatherings this year, and I am planning to serve tea! There is just something about a hot cup of tea that brings people together and warms the soul.

My favorite tea is Earl Grey.


I love snowmen.
Even though I wouldn't call myself a collector of anything (I hate clutter), I do have a few snowmen. This shelf has become tradition at our house. Every year it looks the same. Snowmen on top, chaulkboard sled (hand made and given to me as a gift by my daughter) on the lower level, and little jingle bell snowmen with the names of each family member printed on them adorn the hooks . There's one stocking for Bubba, and one for our daughter and S-I-L. But this year there's something just a little different....I had to add another named snowman....his name is Jack!

Our new little grandson had to have his own snowman ornament. And since I couldn't find one just like the others, he ended up with a snowman snow globe....so cute, just like him!


"She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins." Matthew 1:21

J-I-N-G-L-E Bells O!

We love this old Frank Sinatra song. You can often hear one of us singing this festive little song to little Jack!


We have 2 fun traditions at our house. I think traditions are what bind families together. The first tradition I want to tell you about is something we do every Christmas Eve after church. It's a tradition everyone looks forward to each year. Before we can begin with the fun though, I make my family pose in front of the tree to get a family picture while we're all dressed in our "Sunday Best." Only then can our $5.oo gift exchange begin. We sit in a circle on the living room floor with a $5.00 gift we purchased in front of us. Then I begin by reading a short Christmas story. Each time a chosen word is said (like but or the), we move our gift one person to the right until the story is finished. At the end, you get to keep the gift you end up with. If its your own, however, you pass the gifts to the right one more time. Its always amazing to see how creative one can get with just 5 dollars.

The second is the white elephant exchange. We do this with each of our families. Now I know that a white elephant is some recycled gift that you no longer want or need. But I always try to jazz things up a bit with some kind of gag gift. So this year I made 2 sets of bedroom slippers, one pair for each exchange. These lovely slippers are made from maxi-pads!
I'm hoping they will bring much fun and laughter to our home and make someone's Christmas


Have a great day in the Lord!


Monday, December 7, 2009


Mother nature delivered a sweet surprise to our neck of the woods this weekend. It was some great inspiration for getting all of our preparations for Christmas underway. In our area, snow and cold weather comes to mind when we think of the Christmas season. I often wonder what it's like to live in a place like Florida where cold and snow are not a part of this special holiday. I suppose those folks can only dream of a white Christmas!

On Friday, I had just finished decorating my front porch in a wintry theme. (My daughter thinks that is what encouraged the snow!) I don't have much of a porch. But that doesn't stop me. After all, my little porch is the gateway to our home. I think its important to scream WELCOME to family and friends. I have made it my tradition to decorate for winter, instead of the usual "Christmas-e" decorations. That way I can enjoy them into spring. (And I don't have to go out in the cold to take them down!)

My Christmas to -do list is getting smaller! Though I have many, probably most of my preparations tackled, non can be checked off the list completely-YET!But hopefully this week I can change that. The few Christmas cards I send out are completed. They aren't addressed or sent out. In fact, I'm not even sure who the lucky folks are who will received them. Usually, I write a Family Christmas letter and mail it out digitally. But with the arrival of Jack in October, I decided a picture card would be nice. We'll have to wait and see how that all turns out.

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us.The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called:Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

Many of the cookies are baked. I still have several kinds I'd like to bake. Again, We'll see!

Our tree is up, the packages are wrapped and the house is decorated-check, check and check! I have a few homemade gift projects I'm finishing up.

I need to finalize my menu/shopping lists for Christmas entertaining. If time allows............I hope to do a few posts that will include a tour of our decorated home, menus, recipes and gift projects (even a few gag gifts). But in the meantime, I'm going to try to ....pace myself........ savor the moments.......... and remember the reason for this beautiful season!

Have a very blessed day!


Wednesday, November 25, 2009


This Thanksgiving ......
We're thanking God for his indescribable gifts!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

SWEET CELEBRATION-Jack is 1 month old

Today we're celebrating Jack's birthday. He's growing so fast! Already he is 2 pounds heavier than he was 1 month ago when he made his grand entrance into our world. So in honor of our little sweetie pie.....and because being a grandma is so sweet.......I thought we'd celebrate with something sweet like my favorite CREME BRULE!

Have a sweet day!


Friday, November 6, 2009


Nothing screams autumn like the smell of apple pie baking in the oven on a cool crisp day. And nothing tastes better than a piece of warm apple pie with ice-cream melting over the top. Mmm mmm good! Perhaps you've noticed at the bottom of my blog, apple pie is listed as one of my favorite things. Oh, and while we're on the subject of my favorites, we may as well throw in a cup of freshly brewed coffee to go with it as well!

Another thing that strikes my fancy is heading out for the day with the moms for some shopping. Recently we made the shopping loop- first to Reading and then to Lancaster County. When going from Reading to Lancaster, we always pass this Amish church (complete with horse parking) with a lovely view of an Amish farm and the surrounding valley. I have taken pictures of the farm in the past. But on this particular day, it was especially beautiful! The hues of yellow were incredible!

Monday, October 12, 2009


The excitement is "growing" at our house as we await the arrival of our first grandchild!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Foto Friday- Mac and Marzi

Mac and Marzi are like two peas in a pod. They love one another. Mac is my 10 year old lab, and Marzi is my daughter's 1 year old Boston Terrier. Marzi does her best to keep Mac young and active. They love to play together, and they especially like to tease the chickens.

Mac- what a sweet face

Marzi trying out the baby seat.


Double Trouble

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Autumn!!

It's the first day of Autmn, and I must say its my favorite time of year! And if the truth be known, I enjoy decorating for fall, even more than decorating for Christmas.
With a few items from the garden on the porch ....
And some indoor decorations to give the house that feeling of fall....

There's nothing left to do but to begin the baking to give our home the aroma of autumn!

My Favorite Poem.....

When the Frost is on the Punkin
by James Whitcomb Riley

WHEN the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock,
And you hear the kyouck and gobble of the struttin' turkey-cock,
And the clackin' of the guineys, and the cluckin' of the hens,
And the rooster's hallylooyer as he tiptoes on the fence;
O, it's then the time a feller is a-feelin' at his best,
With the risin' sun to greet him from a night of peaceful rest,
As he leaves the house, bareheaded, and goes out to feed the stock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

They's something kindo' harty-like about the atmusfere
When the heat of summer's over and the coolin' fall is here—
Of course we miss the flowers, and the blossoms on the trees,
And the mumble of the hummin'-birds and buzzin' of the bees;
But the air's so appetizin'; and the landscape through the haze
Of a crisp and sunny morning of the airly autumn days
Is a pictur' that no painter has the colorin' to mock—
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

The husky, rusty russel of the tossels of the corn,
And the raspin' of the tangled leaves as golden as the morn;
The stubble in the furries—kindo' lonesome-like, but still
A-preachin' sermuns to us of the barns they growed to fill;
The strawstack in the medder, and the reaper in the shed;
The hosses in theyr stalls below—the clover overhead!—
O, it sets my hart a-clickin' like the tickin' of a clock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

Then your apples all is gethered, and the ones a feller keeps
Is poured around the cellar-floor in red and yaller heaps;
And your cider-makin's over, and your wimmern-folks is through
With theyr mince and apple-butter, and theyr souse and sausage too!...
I don't know how to tell it—but ef such a thing could be
As the angels wantin' boardin', and they'd call around on me—
I'd want to 'commodate 'em—all the whole-indurin' flock—
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.
Have a great first day of Fall!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A THOUGHT OCCURRED TO ME.....(in the garden)

A thought occurred to me while I was mowing grass today. I was in the garden dumping some grass clippings. Most of the garden has been picked over and is showing signs of the season's end. It's very sad to say goodbye to those last remnants of summer. So I was thinking how I'd like to pluck off those few last tomatoes and bring them in the house to ripen and extend the tomato season. And then I looked over at a little green pepper hanging on the vine....and that's when it hit me! I could sever that pepper from the vine to save it from any risk of frost. But once its cut from its life source, it will cease to grow and flourish....just like us!
If we sever ourselves from Christ, our life source, we will cease to grow and flourish.
So for now, I'm going to let that little pepper on the vine so it can continue to grow!
Clinging to the vine!
Yes I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5

Heart shaped tomato....isn't it cute!?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


I cut a pepper today while making salsa and I got a
sweet surprise~
that made me

Have a great day and be sure to smile!



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