Sunday, June 28, 2009

a good book in my bag

Tomorrow I'm going to Caroline's house for a haircut; I think I'll take this book along in my bag to read to her little ones-The 4th of July Story by Alice Dalgliesh; first published in 1956, the book is intended for ages 5 to 9, however those younger will enjoy listening and those older will certainly enjoy reading it! Colorful, full page illustrations accompany the text. I like the author's note in the preface:

The story of the birthday of our country is a big story to tell young children. Yet when they begin to ask, "Why do we have a holiday on the Fourth of July"? they have a right to know. They have a right to know that Independence Day is something more than fireworks and picnics. . .

You should be able to find this book at the public library and for purchase through Amazon; also. . . .we love The Courage of Sarah Noble by the same author!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

first consider the interest of another

Last Saturday the perdicted heat index for San Antonio was 103 degrees, so I grabbed my book bag and headed for a quiet, cool spot. I ended up at my favorite library close to home, a library in an old house.
So- I found one empty chair in the periodical room and settled down with my book bag. 10 minutes into my study time, a woman with a cell phone began a loud conversation on the other side of the room partition-very loud, very personal. . .on and on it dragged, folks nearby twittered, coughed, cleared throats. . .

Sigh--I put down my books and pulled out my knitting. 30 minutes passed and finally the loud phone talker moved on; once more the library was cool. . . . quiet. Ah, yes, back to the books . . .

I was concentrating, counting stitches-and barely noticed a woman who entered the room and reached for the newspaper on the shelf in front of my chair. She circled the room, stopped, and announced to me, "I need your chair; I have to study and you are just knitting."

I stared at her, "Oh, you need to use your lap top here in this spot?" I asked (why did I say that? there was no lap top connection nor table around my chair. . .)

"Oh, no, I need to do research in today's newspaper and you are just knitting" she repeated

I didn't say another word, because I didn't know what to say, but there were words in my mind. . . is there a sign, no knitting allowed! . . . is newspaper reading more worthy than sweater knitting?. . .you don't understand, the loud woman with the cell phone. . .

I was stuck in my indecision- the woman in the chair next to mine was reading a book, and she said to me kindly, "she can have my chair."

This little incident happened over a week ago, but it keeps rattling around inside of me. . . and why? I'm thankful that I didn't return her rudeness with my own rudeness, thankful that I kept my mouth shut- but why didn't I just give her my seat? afterall, blessed are the meek. . .but there's more to it than just meekly giving up my seat to a rude woman with a newspaper; my motivation can't merely be meekness. If I could redo it-how could my response to this woman compliment the gospel? I'm wrestling with that question-and over coffee, I've been asking around; one young friend suggested, " I might say, Jesus tells me to consider others before myself, so I'd be glad to give up my seat". . . hmmm, that's good, so what would you do?

. . . with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself (Phil 2:3)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

a conversation in my kitchen. . .

Last week I had a conversation with a young woman; I was cooking, listening, and talking in my very warm kitchen- the conversation was good. She asked me how John and I met, how he proposed-you know, the whole story. . .

then she asked me, "Did you ever think you married the wrong man?"

hmmm. . . doesn't every woman think that at least once in her married life? I've been asked that question before; I always answer, . . . once you're married, he's the right man and it's for life!

John and I were young believers when we married 37 years ago, barely taking those first steps of faith, just nibbling on the truths of God's Word. . .but we were hungry to know the Saviour-

So, last week I told the dear girl in my kitchen that the pursuit of a strong marriage is fueled by the pursuit of the fear of the Lord. . . that through marriage we have the amazing opportunity to display the beauty of the Gospel.

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever (Ps 19: 9)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

sixty. . .

Today is John's birthday; he's 60 years old. . . so, we'll go to Luke and Gabrielle's for dinner; Mercy and Josiah will be there too, and I'll make a rhubarb strawberry pie-John's favorite; and then he will go to teach his Bible study at the homeless shelter, of course-for that's what he does every Tuesday, birthday or no birthday. . .

Even to your old age, I shall be the same, and even to your graying years I shall bear you! I have done it and I shall carry you; and I shall bear you, and I shall deliver you. (Isaiah 46:4)

granPapi carrying Amaleah at the zoo.
He asks her, "monkeys or apes? how can you tell?"

Thursday, June 11, 2009

3 years old and a pink sweater

A few weeks before Julia's 3rd birthday in February, I pulled a tape measure out of my bag and asked if I could stretch it around her little chest; she complied and then asked me, "you make me a sveater for my birthday?" Well, of course, sweet child, and how did you know?

Pink. . .she wanted it to be Pink.
Hmmm. . .I'd already purchased the yarn-it was kind of pink.
Finally, the birthday sweater is finished-we call it watermelon pink, and I think she likes it!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Preparing my house. . .

Last week I was an industrious woman- preparing my house for a hospitality opportunity.
So, I swept and mopped, cleaned the bathrooms, decluttered, arranged the furniture, counted the chairs and places to sit around the tables. . .
I prepared my part of the meal, and dessert, set up the table for coffee, another for drinks, ice. . .prepared the plates, cups, utensils. . .you know how all that goes.
Next I set out the crayons and paper, books, blocks, an assortment of toy cars-to prepare for the children who would come to my house. . .

And we had a wonderful gathering-adults, teens, children, toddlers. A cool breeze for the house, just enough food, bocce ball after the meal, singing, worthy conversations, a missionary couple sharing the Lord's work. . .delightful fellowship, folks stayed late-it was lovely!
The next morning I was reading Psalm 19, praying, and I was convicted. . . I had been diligent to prepare what others see, my house. . . but careless to prepare what only God sees, my heart. How quickly I succumbed to the temptation to thoughts, to attitudes which elevate self and dishonor the Lord. . .but today's a new day, with a fresh opportunity to guard my heart, to honor the Lord, " Keep back your servant from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me!. . .Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer" (Psalm 19:13-14)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

too much basil?

Early Tuesday morning I was working in the yard when a school bus stopped in front of our house. . . a noisy yellow school bus. . . in front of my house, imagine that?

So, the bus doors folded back and the driver called out to me, Your garden. . . It's amazing!
No children in the bus, only the bus driver and her assistant, so we had a pleasant chat,
"I gave away all my squash yesterday. . .come back on Friday, there should be more. . "

The bus driver described a neighborhood in her hometown in Alabama-one house had a lush front yard vegetable garden. . .
"the folks just put out a little can-you picked what you wanted and dropped loose change in the can."
hmmm, nice idea- not very practical in my neighborhood, but we'll see. . . .

There's so much basil in my garden, a bounty of basil-wish you could see it and take some home! So, I'm sharing my basil. . . and I'm making basil pesto. I've been researching and collecting pesto recipes and finally settled on Caroline's Pesto with a few adaptations. It's easy- I combine all the following ingredients in the bowl of my food processor:
3 cups fresh basil, packed
3/4 cup fresh parsley
2/3 cup toasted walnuts
4 or 5 large cloves fresh garlic
1/2 cup olive oil
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt, pepper to taste

Blend til smooth, add a little more olive oil if pesto is too dry. We add basil pesto to warm pasta, on french bread, spread on sandwitches. Enjoy!