Friday, June 29, 2012

InstaFriday - Last Week of June!

Ahhhh! It's the end of June! Where has it gone?

PTL for my InstaFridays. I can look back and see where it's gone. The last seven days were full and busy. The last month was full and busy. I hope you are documenting your days in some way. You may not forget the gist of the days, but you might forget the details. Not really momentous details - but details that made you smile. That's really what my InstaFridays are. A diary of details.

The first entry in my photo diary was taken last Saturday, when we attended the wedding of a couple that began dating when he was a freshman in high school and she was a senior! I've watched them grow up. It was a real celebration - and had a bit of a Star Wars twist. Three of my girls helped out at the guest book and gift table, and at the reception. I did what I now always do at weddings. I cried.

The bride's dad had a little fun with the marquee
Surprise of Surprises when I opened fb this week. A friend had put a link on my wall with the caption, "Congrats to Liz!" When we opened the link, we saw this article. Wowsa!

The only thing I would change here is the picture ;)
 If you are gonna make a bucket list and want to make sure you accomplish at least one of them, then this is what you do. I laughed out loud.
Elizabeth's handiwork
I just noticed that Elizabeth is all over these pictures this week! She often plops down in my lap (which I love) and here she had the phone at arm's length. She looks like a cutie. My hand, however, looks like a raisin.

My doctor husband often gets mail inviting him to practice in far off exotic places. We got one this week from just such a place. It's also near and dear to my heart - the place I come from.

25 miles north of Memphis is Munford, where I drew my first breath on this earth.
I took a screen shot of these texts, because they encouraged me. I did a post about it. If you are interested, click here.

PEACHES are here! I am in heaven. My sister came through the Bootheel on Tuesday and picked these up for me. Happy dance in progress.

And my girls are in a crafting mood! As I type this, they are at Hobby Lobby picking up more supplies. Talk about bringing joy and beauty into your home. They are all over it. Thank you, Pinterest!

Faith made this for her room

Another Faith creation.

Elizabeth adding beauty to the world!
I was in the mood for a really healthy meal the other night, so I googled Panera's Strawberry Poppyseed Chicken Salad. A quick trip to the store and voila! To. die. for.

We are all about food over here, so yesterday the girls and I headed to Halfway, MO, and enjoyed some good country cooking. Yummy, but probably at the opposite end of the health spectrum as the salad pictured above...

And after some basketball games at the Parkview Shootout, Elizabeth and I hit the real Panera. I took this picture to make Hannah jealous.

And here's Elizabeth...again!

Well, those are a few of the deets that I don't want to forget.  Thanks for sharing them with me.

Have a great weekend!

life rearranged

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Five Big Words

Tuesday, Mary Grace encouraged me without even knowing it.

That night about 9:30, she asked if she could text her friend's mom and ask if her dear friend, Gracie, could workout with the her and the cross country group early the next day. Here's how the conversation went:

It's the line followed by the smiley face and thumbs up sign that got to me.

I don't know of too many words that are more encouraging than "I will stay with her." And when those words are followed by a smiley face and a thumbs up sign? Well, a person is darn near ready to conquer the world.

All we all need to know is that we've got somebody by our side. In our court. Doing the hard stuff with us.

After my casual, happy reading of that text, my thoughts went down a couple three roads.

First, it made me thank God for those people in my life who are with me. With me by encouraging me in one way or another. They may literally be with me, or they may let me know they are with me in spirit by a timely text, email, or call. That old fashioned thing called a letter has also been known to have the words I needed to hear. Those things keep a person keeping on.

Her text also made me think of our God. He also tells us over and over that He, too is by our side. In our court. Doing the hard stuff with us. A couple of verses from his letter illustrate just that.

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”

Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Psalm 23:4  Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me;  your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

And those verses are just a sample of the "God is with us" pie.

And lastly, that beautiful text encouraged me to be what Mary Grace was to Gracie, and inadvertently, to me: an ENCOURAGER. When a complimentary thought comes through your mind about someone - even someone random - don't hold back! Let that encouragement out! Somebody in your circle needs to know you are with them. In their court. Doing the hard stuff with them.

There are three miles to be run.

There is life to be lived.

Friday, June 22, 2012


A diary in cell phone pictures. That's InstaFriday.

It's also a reminder of how fleeting a week really is! I look back at these and wonder where my week went. It is gone - in an instant!

The Bible talks about our life being a mist, that appears for a little while, and then vanishes. I don't want to waste it. I want to be intentional about living it, and I want to be thankful for the precious moments that make up my days, my weeks.

Like this week. I'm thankful I...

watched Mary Grace work on a sport she LOVES.
 admired Mary Grace's and Faith's creativity - they painted these shoes at a bday party!

watched Faith & Hannah complete a Pinterest project. We heart Bolivar,  MO!

smiled when I saw this turtle that visits our garage a couple of times a week to eat the cat food!
I wonder who put that touch of pink there?

snapped this picture on Father's Day. And he's a good one!

crafted a bit with the girls to decorate our mantel. Smile, Elizabeth.
saw this beautiful, yet unknown plant while I walked around the square in Fayetteville, AR.
gasped when I saw this stunning crepe myrtle - also on the square in Fayetteville.
decided to eat here when I saw 1 kajillion people go in it - also on the square in Fayetteville.
I am a fan of Fayetteville, if you haven't noticed.

stayed at the Hampton Inn in...Fayetteville, where they had random things on the inside of their elevators....
marveled at the handiwork of God in these much needed rain clouds. And where did I see these? Fayetteville.

laughed when I saw where the girls ended up after their afternoon jog
tried to jump our 87 Dodge Dakota. I was unsuccessful, but I tried.

While in Fayetteville, I bought a bushel purple hull peas - my favorite!! When I got home, we had a shelling party. Lots of good conversation as we did that mindless, thumb-staining task. We also enjoyed a little banana's foster courtesy of my Lou. Who I skipped to and thanked for making such a yummy dessert!

Where's Kiowa?

Thanks for sharing my week with me.

I hope you have an incredible restful weekend. One where you have the time and inclination to look back and be thankful.


life rearranged

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Mum's the Word

I'm trying to take the hint.

The word "mum" has been on my mind lately.

It started on Monday when I read the blog post, "My mum doesn't read my blog" by Chantelle out of Sydney, Australia. I also read through her comment section a little, and the references to "mums" throughout were just so darn cute. It was a little "awhh" moment about the word "mum."

Then on Tuesday, I read this little blurb in one of my favorite books, A Third Treasury of the Familiar.

Those two separate buy equal readings rode tandem on my bike ride yesterday.

Peddling up the slight incline on Hartford, and before I was aware that the thoughts from those readings were joining me on my ride, I was, oddly enough, thinking about what my grandkids might call me someday.  I'm attributing my thinking such a random thought, (when, to my knowledge, I have no potential progeny on the horizon) to the fact that I had read the following Beth Moore tweet the morning of said bike ride.  It shows her unusual grandma name: "Bibby."

Camp Bibby is ON. Arts & crafts supplies? Check. Great snacks? Check. Incentives for getting along? Check. Let's do it, Jackson & Annabeth!

What name would I be christened with? I've still got time to influence what it is....Then it hit me.

MUM! How about "Mum?" Wouldn't that be the cutest thing? That's right up there cute with "Bibby!" As I'm pedaling to my heart's content, I don't think through how close that really is to "Mom," and how confusing that might be to little ones, I just bask in the potential cuteness of it - especially when compared to the age heavy "Grandma."

"Mum." I think I even said it out loud. And then I thought of the complete appropriateness of it on even another level. There is a non-British meaning to this word that most of us here in America think of first when we hear the word "mum." Well, we think of it or the flower. The second meaning I'm referring to is "silent."

Now, if I have grandchildren, hopefully I'll have a son-in-law or a daughter-in-law. And from what I've heard others say about that role, I know I need to keep most of my opinions to myself.  Right about here is where I remembered what I'd read about Calvin Coolidge. Yep, silence, or "judicious silence," is to be valued and cultivated in the role of mother-in-law and grandma mum.

However, the art of knowing when to speak and when not to speak isn't something I need to save for a future role. It's needed here and now - in my marriage, in my parenting, in my life. The Bible has something to say about it all too. I just googled "Bible verses about talking too much." Here's what showed up.

And that's not all of them. But it's enough of them to get the point. Clearly. (Kind of glad there aren't any verses about blogging too much. :) you can tell, that was some bike ride. I went from being a "mum" to being "mum." And, not only that, it spawned a blog post! God can really use anything and everything to teach us about ourselves - to teach us about himself. And that always brings joy.

I sure don't want to keep mum about that!

Monday, June 18, 2012

My Summer Mantel

Yay! The 4th of July mantel I've thought about doing for years has finally been birthed! I have Twitter and Pinterest to thank.

Layla, over at The Lettered Cottage, tweeted about an upcoming summer themed link party she was hosting on June 18. I mustered my best intentions and told myself I was gonna join it. I'd been thinking about it quite a bit, but had done nothing to make it happen except pin a couple of pins onto my Fourth of July board, with the intention, of course, to make what I had pinned - someday.

Then Jon Acuff, who I also follow on Twitter, tweeted "Four words from the book I'm writing:"

Ok, that's a good smack on the forehead.

And last night, with a little lot of help from my girls, we put something together that makes us all smile. The only thing I had to buy was some patriotic scrapbook paper for our garland. The couple of websites that I looked at to make it are I Heart Nap Time and Hoosier Homemade.

With all that said, here's what we did.

Nothing too fancy, but enough red, white, and blue to get us in the mood for fireworks in a couple of weeks!

My good friend, Sue Roweton, made the pillow on the hearth for me years ago
I like using things that mean something to me in my decorating. A couple more items here fit that bill.

In front of my dad's clinic, I sold tons of lemonade out of this igloo when I was a little girl.

My fourth grade history book

1776 was the first time I was introduced to David McCullough. Love him. And I read to our kids from Bennett's book.

I picked this little gem up in Williamsburg, VA, after reading about it in McCullough's 1776. At the age of 14, Washington wrote down these rules from an English translation of a French book of maxims about polite behavior. Here's the 1st:

Every action done in company ought to be with some sign of respect to those that are present. 

And the 90th:

Being set at meat, scratch not; neither spit, cough, or blow your nose, except if there is a necessity for it.

Yes, please! Or better yet, say "excuse me" and sashay to the restroom.

Our finishing touch was the paper fireworks. These now have meaning for me because the girls and I had a good time making them together.

Like I said earlier, our little fireplace festivity going on makes me smile.

So does my intention turned into action.

Yay! Happy Summer!

For TONS of summer inspiration, be sure and click on the button below or click on the following:

Home Stories A 2 Z.

The Lettered Cottage

Friday, June 15, 2012


Some days are harder than others. Can I admit to you that I am having a hard day today?

I've wanted to cry and I've wanted to bite some heads off. So far, those two dragons have stayed in the "wanted" phase - and that's good. Both for me and the other potential victims. I can't really guarantee they'll stay there, but we'll deal with that when and if the time comes.

For now, I'm going to do what has, for me, at least, always been a very helpful thing. I'm going to do the next thing.

And on Fridays, one of those next things is my InstaFriday post. My life documented through the lens of my cell phone. This little blogging exercise typically brings a smile to my face. Any type of  creativity, even on the smallest of levels, does that for most people, I think. So it's extra nice when a "next thing" thing is creative!

I'm feeling better already.

And I remember feeling really good when we took a trip to Minnesota this past weekend for my niece's wedding. A happier, giddier bride I don't ever remember seeing. Her joy was infectious.  Since the wedding wasn't until 7 p.m., we shopped and partied on Saturday...

One of the greatest stores on the planet

I thought these shelves were really fun

Cousins outside Lou's favorite store, REI

My girls with me before the nuptials

And with the happiest bride on the planet

Worshipped at this church on Sunday.
Heard song "Let us Love and Sing and Wonder," which was written by John Newton of "Amazing Grace" fame.

After our weekend in Minneapolis, we headed to Rochester and spent the night with my brother. He loves words and language like me, and showed me what he's been reading lately.

He reads a selection from this to his family after the evening meal

My sister-in-law has a green, green thumb. She grew these lovely peonies...

Gracing the wall of their house was one of my mom's samplers. I remember this hanging on the wall of my childhood home. It's the old fashioned stamped cross-stitch, not the more modern counted variety.

Not sure I agree completely with this sentiment. 
Speaking of vast, or at least, semi-vast, ideas, the girls and I ripped out the carpet in my closet on Tuesday. And at this point on Friday, we are still enjoying the sub flooring motif that is so popular right now.

I ended my week with a trip to Springfield. Orthodontist appointments and Hobby Lobby go well together. However, I was not prepared to see some Christmas displays out on June 14th! That's just wrong.

And now, I find myself at the end. I'm happy to report that I do indeed feel better than when I started.

Very grateful for the "next thing" of counting my InstaFriday blessings! Thanks, Jeannette, over at Life.rearranged, for this weekly, joy bringing Link Party!

life rearranged