Taking The Time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This was the view from my seat in the mini-van. It is not unusual for my family to see Amish, when we are out on the road.

We often say, “Out here in rural Ohio, one has to always stay aware of the Amish and the deer when driving.”

There’s one thing about being on the road with the Amish… one is forced to slow down. That is not such a bad thing.

Slowing down. Looking around. Appreciating  the journey…. and not just speeding,  in a blur, towards the destination.

Isn’t that a good lesson for us all? For how to live life?

I can say for myself, some of the best views are when I am taking the time to look.

A slower pace. Appreciating the trip…one moment at a time.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven…Ecclesiastes 3:1  NIV

**********************************************

Have a glorious Saturday, my friends. Appreciate the journey.

“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going to fast-you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.”

—Eddie Cantor

Related articles

Living In Amish Country

Thank you to all my readers for your patience.

I had my mom, sister, and nieces here for a visit. We had a lot of fun and stayed busy, so I wasn’t on the computer very often. I thought I’d share some pictures from our outing yesterday…nothing like a late afternoon drive through Amish country.

As I have said before, I love Autumn in Ohio. The leaves are beginning to change in earnest. O’ happy day!

Americana at its finest.

My family travels this road often…and this is what we see.

 

Isn’t it peaceful watching horses grazing in the field?

Perfect day for doing laundry…obviously.

You will go out in joy
   and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
   will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
   will clap their hands. Isaiah 55:12  NIV

Random Silliness

 

I’ve been looking through my pictures…..and thought I’d share some random silliness with you, my blog readers. Life is never so serious that we can’t take some time to laugh at ourselves.

I was going through some of my pictures the other day. What ever possessed me to take these pictures? I remember I was doing something crafty and wanted a picture of it. I was, at the time, sitting on the bedroom floor trying to decide on lighting…..why I took these pictures I don’t know. I nearly blinded myself with the flash. I’ve got real talent. On a bright note, I had just gotten my hair cut and it looked pretty good.

I have a thing for barns. I don’t know why, I just do. I’m the crazy woman that drives around the Ohio countryside snapping pictures of stranger’s barns. I’m very covert…I only stopped the van in the middle of the road on a few occasions.

Why was it that we moved from the southern states, to Ohio? Just kidding. I like the snow. Of course, I am not the one shoveling it, so I can say that.

Too bad that my camera doesn’t take night time pictures very well. This is the moon. Really. And, by the way, your eyes are not bad. The pictures are not in focus. I said I took pictures. I never said I was good at it.

These pictures were me admiring my newly stained window grilles that I did this past summer. I will not discuss the details of The Great Stain Debacle of 2011….Oh, okay.  I um….slipped and stained myself in the process. Does anyone know how difficult it is to get wood stain off skin? Let’s just say, for days I looked like I was covered in liver spots. End of discussion.

A happy heart makes the face cheerful,
   but heartache crushes the spirit.  Proverbs 15:13  NIV

Prepare For The Worst, Hope For The Best

Hurricane Irene

Image by janthepea via Flickr

For the past several days all I’ve heard about is hurricane Irene. I have the track of the storm memorized. I’m watching for who is being forced to evacuate. Now, homeland security is even involved. Of course, I am a weather geek extraordinaire so all this talk doesn’t bother me. I’m sure all I will hear between now and Monday is the latest news on the fast approaching hurricane Irene. I will get to see reporters standing in 100+ mph winds, hanging on to telephone poles so as not to be blown down the street or blown out to sea. I will get glimpses of 20 foot waves crashing onto the shore and the reporters, in their bright yellow rain slickers, running for their lives.This sort of stuff is the life blood of a bonafide weather watcher. I’m telling you what, between the earthquake earlier this week and now the hurricane. Be still my heart!

What is the deal with people surfing in the choppy waters? Hello! Riptides, people! North Carolina life guards are pulling these nuts out of the water.  Some people really make me wonder….wonder if they are all together there, you know, mentally.

The news anchors make it sound like NYC is either going to be under water or caught in hurricane force winds so strong that they will bust out every window in the city. Not that the news media ever exaggerates anything. Just sayin’.

I am in Ohio, so I don’t have to prepare for the upcoming “end of days” hurricane. I do hope all my  east coast family and friends are hunkered down with supplies this weekend. Be safe…and for cryin’ out loud, don’t go stand outside when the storm hits, with a microphone in your hand.

Commercial Break From The Heat

Columbus is the fourth largest city in the Midwest

Image via Wikipedia

 

The Midwest has been under a record breaking heat wave. The heat index in my area has reached as high as 110 degrees this week. The news people are warning everyone to stay inside, turn on the a/c, and drink lots of water.

I felt like I should interrupt this miserable heat for a brief, and much needed, commercial break. On that note I bring you the cool, icy thoughts of winter. Snow falling. Ice forming. Freezing cold toes and nose. Snow men and sled rides, mittens and gray skies.

I think I can feel myself cooling down already. Some more ice for my tea, please?

This commercial is brought to you by January in Ohio.

 

The road to home…

Ice covered trees, so pretty.


Let  it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

 

And now a word from our sponsors.

Bark. Woof. Give us a treat….Puh-leeze?!

Now, back to your regularly scheduled program. Think cool thoughts!

They’re Coming To Take Me Away…

horse fly, Diptera family Tabanidae, Tabanus s...

Image via Wikipedia

On this incredibly stinkin’ hot day in the rural Midwest, I thought we could all use a good dose of humor. I will allow you to laugh at my expense. Dawn vs. Nature. It is not a pretty sight.

I thought that we had moved to a picturesque setting in the rural farmland of Ohio. Actually, this turned out to be true, although I had no idea the other critters that had also chose to live alongside us on our little slice of land. In the Spring we had a raccoon under the deck. This visitor caused our dogs to nearly go berserk. At 3 am in the morning. The dogs couldn’t get to the “scared out of his wits” raccoon, and the raccoon was NOT coming out with two “Cujo‘s” on the loose. There was not much sleeping going on that night for anyone in a five mile radius of our house.

We have a ground hog that has a vacation home down where our property meets the road. He is quiet and keeps to himself. Every time I see him, The Wind and The Willows comes to mind.

We have Bambi and family that trek across our side yard on a fairly regular basis. Fun to watch, unless one decides to jump out directly in front of the the family van….then it is a little scary. The other night my husband laid some rubber on the road when he braked hard not to hit a deer that literally came out of nowhere, directly in front of us. My heart was hammering in my chest during that little moment, as I was nearly decapitated by the stupid shoulder strap safety belt. Are there any statistics on death by shoulder strap?

In August and September we have the gnat plague. Where in the world do gnats come from? Honestly, there is no food sitting out, nothing like that….they just appear like clockwork. In August. They stay for two months and the family chases them around with the bug zapper before they disappear, or are inadvertently eaten, as they are always in my way while fixing dinner. Um…they look like pepper. Sorry. I looked gnats up on the internet. They are a nuisance, but harmless and will not kill anyone if eaten. I don’t know why they come here. It’s one of life’s mysteries.

In late Fall and early winter the field mice decide that it is time for them to head toward their winter retreat. The retreat happens to be our garage, and if they are slick enough….the main living quarters. This does not set well with me. At all. I hate mice with a white hot passion. They mock me, as they scratch around in the walls. I find myself yelling at them ….and I know I am not imagining that I hear the faint sound of laughter. Go ahead and laugh! It’s all fun and games until I start laying out glue traps. Stinkin’ little fur balls. Then who will be laughing? I digress…….mice put me in a precarious mental state.

We are currently battling a horse fly population that has reached biblical proportions. Now, before I moved to Ohio I thought I had seen horse flies. I was wrong….at least not like these. These flies are the huge. Their heads are the size of my thumb nail. I am not kidding. One has to make a run for it when leaving or entering the house. If one should linger too long on the deck, there is a great possibility that said person could possibly be carried off by the mutant horse fly gang. They dive bomb anyone on the deck, like miniature Kamikaze pilots.

I better go. I’m heading out to the deck.

I think I’ll take the electric bug zapper with me. It reminds me of a lightsaber.

Just call me Luke Skywalker.

Take Me Home–Windows Version

 

My family moved into our house (that we built, along with dozens of other men) in Ohio, two years ago this month. My husband and I had decided that our windows would have the grill work that snaps on and makes the windows look like they have small panes of glass. (I’m all about aesthetics, you know.) I stained all the grill work by hand, by myself, thank you very much. I did that and it sat in the attic…..until yesterday. You see the casings of all the windows are natural wood and did not match the dark wood in the house. Staining all the window casings would be a big job and I didn’t feel up to it. Until this week. I am grabbing the bull by the horns, so to speak. Maybe I should say I’m grabbing the brush by the handle. I think HGTV has inspired me. Or not. I just want to get this task completed….and I want the trims to match, so there you go. Yesterday I worked all afternoon staining the casings in the kitchen, then I washed the windows, wiped down the grills, and snapped them in (which is much more difficult than one would think, believe me…. I have a cut thumb to prove it). Instant beautification.

The white parts on the windows are not wood, so therefore cannot be stained. It’s the tracking part thing-a-ma-bobbers, in the windows. So, that is not my fault. Just sayin’. When looking through the kitchen window, one can see the corner posts of the front porch and my still empty flower bed…although, it has been tilled. The bird feeders are also visible.

I like my faux silk curtains. I got them for $7.99 a piece at Wal-mart. One can hardly go wrong with that price. Pretty. Pretty. They add some snazziness to the windows, and are beautiful when the light filters through them.

This is the small kitchen window facing the driveway. The bottles are from Snapple‘s raspberry tea. I washed them and filled them with colored glass pieces. When the sun hits them it almost looks like stained glass. Once again, I got the glass pieces at Wal-mart and already had the glass bottles. Prettiness on the cheap.

 

Beat The Heat

Ice cubes in a tray

Image via Wikipedia

It is a hot, humid, sticky, stifling Monday morning in west central Ohio. I know there are a lot of people dealing with temperatures much hotter than the 90’s, but it’s still hot, regardless. I could gripe about the heat (and I probably will, because I am not above whining), but I will begin today’s blog with being thankful that we have a working air conditioner in the house.

The last severe heat wave we had, the air conditioner was not working. We couldn’t catch a breeze and I was quickly melting in a pool of sweat. It was a gross and disgusting scene. Just trust me on that. Moist skin, hair plastered to my head, and a sweat mustache are not my most beautiful look. Needless to say, I was happy to see the temps eventually drop. Now, this week, I am looking at 95 degree temps again.

Have I mentioned that I enjoy the laid back spirit of summer? But, not so laid back that I drop over dead on the lawn from heat stroke. Just sayin’. Don’t waste your time telling me I am a heat wimp…because I won’t even fight you on that point. I will just agree with you and then request that you go and get me some more ice cubes for my tea…..or fan me……or spray me with the water hose. That’s just how I roll.

The dog days of summer are very real at my house. The outside dogs just lay around in the shade, and pant a lot. I make sure their water bowls are always full. I tell them to drink up. I’m seriously considering buying them a kiddy pool. They can lay around in it and I can bring them their water bowls with little umbrellas in them.

I’m already thinking ahead. Three months from now will be October 18th. Aaahhh….cool days and crisp nights. My perfect season…..Autumn, I miss you. Please hurry. Before I melt.

Well, it’s off to find something to wear today. Something cool…..but, still decent. And legal.

*****************************************************************

I’m thankful this Monday morning for…..

*laughter

*humor

*friendships

*family

*working air conditioner

*ice cubes

*cold water

*my house

*a to do list, and the ability to do

*my husband’s job

*compliments

*encouragement

*the possibility of rain

*creativity

*A heavenly Father who loves me

*That sad times never last

*That there are golden moments in each day

*Life

Driving Towards Home

 

Yesterday I drove the roughly 30 miles (one way) to get a John Deere mower part for my husband. Actually, I really love the drive. I get to drive down country roads, with hardly any traffic, and just enjoy the scenery. I brought my camera with me. I do not advocate snapping pictures while driving, but I literally had no one else around for the entire trip back home. Just me and the barns. And corn. And thunderstorm.

 

On the road again…..just can’t wait to get on the road again…..

This old barn looks lonely. It makes me kind of sad to see barns deteriorating. Sigh.

Pretty farm.

Love this picture. Barn in a sea of corn. I’m glad the Ohio farmers were finally able to plant their corn after all the torrential rain we had this past Spring.

Another barn and more corn. In the Midwest one sees a lot of barns and corn. It doesn’t get old for me.

Hard working, older barn.

I like this picture. The farm in the bend of the road. Notice the sky went from sunny to now getting a bit darker. Hmmm…….were we supposed to get rain?

This is a Methodist church…literally in the corner of the road. That is a sharp turn, too. I’d be scared to be sitting in the sanctuary of that church…if somebody doesn’t make that curve,  he/she (and their vehicle) might be joining the service that day.

I have to have a John Deere picture in here. After all this is the country.

Still snapping pictures….this is on the last road until my house. Um…..sky looking very ominous. I know this picture is blurry….I was driving a little faster–wanting to get home before the rain.

Uh oh. I’m not going to make it before the rain gets me. This doesn’t look good. The sky has turned VERY dark. Um…..I’m getting a little nervous now. Hmmmm…….

Ewwww…..angry, angry sky. (this is roughly 1:30 in the afternoon…when I left the house about an hour and a half before it was sunny and hot) If a tornado gets me, I hope my husband posts these last pictures that I have taken.

Shew. I made it home but, not before the storm hit. Full force. What was really creepy…..I saw the wind coming at me across the field. The corn was bowed over as the wind raced at me. SLAM. It hit the van and I had to hold the steering wheel tightly just to keep it on the road. Then the rain hit. I felt like I was in the rinse cycle of the washing machine. My windshield wipers could hardly keep up.

Thunder. Lightning. I sat in the van in the driveway for several minutes before I made a break for the house.

What a day.

I was glad to be home.

Encouragement Is Nourishment

Road

Today, over at Faith Barista, we are jamming about encouragement. We are discussing the topic where we feel we could use a little (or a lot) encouragement. Truth be told, couldn’t we all use some?

*************

I love to travel. The thought of the open road gets me all excited.

I love to meet people. I love to hear stories. I love to write.

I love vintage. Treasure finding. Flea markets. Decorating.

The Junk Gypsies are my heroes.

East coast, Maryland girl. Down home, Tennessee woman. Mid-West mama, lovin’ Ohio.

Kickin’ it up in cowboy boots in  Texas. In awe of the Tetons in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Love ’em all.

I love living in the country and the every day of small town life.

I thrill at the bright lights and diversity and interesting shops in the cities.

I am passionate about rights for the disabled. I want to help where I can.

I am constantly in awe of my Jesus. His name is above all others.

I’m not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Life has been a roller coaster. A heartache and a party.

Love. Laughter. And Mud. (nobody’s perfect)

So, that is kind of me….as best as I can describe myself.

I guess, at age 43, I pretty much know who I am. What I like. People I love.

But, where do I fit in? How do I meld together my talents with my interests?

Is anyone out there, “living the life”? Do you wake up in the morning, knowing you

are exactly where you are supposed to be? Doing what you love?

I know, no one’s life is perfect……and I wouldn’t want perfect anyway. That’s boring.

How do you live out your dreams?

Please share your advice. I read every comment.

Your words matter.

They really do.

FaithBarista_FreshJamBadgeG