Thursday, August 25, 2016

Just So You Won't Think The Summer Heat Melted Me...

Still here! Still learning some lessons I've already told you about and didn't want to go all summer-rerun-blah-blah-blah on you. 

You're welcome.  :)

I did forget to share a photo of another yard sale find--the pizza wheel:

Surely screams 1970's doesn't it? Of course I hung it on the wall (wouldn't everyone?) rather than hiding it inside a drawer. Rubber-band-ed with it were some dinner forks, rubber spatulas, a bottle opener and teaspoons all for, get this, just .25 cents. What fun to come home, remove the rubber band and examine each item.

Actually, it reminded me of when, as a child, my family visited my grandparents and we all attended an auction. The adults went halfsies and bought a largish sealed box for $2 which everyone stood around later and opened upon my grandparents' stone porch. I don't recall a single thing inside the box, but I do remember the giddy suspense as each item was lifted out and shown all around. Young and old, we felt it that evening, a collective wonder of what treasures the box could hold and the closeness of family within that literal circle surrounding it

Funny how we can travel back in our minds nearly 50 years ago like that, right? How wonderful of God to insert the ability to keep our loved ones close while, presently, they dwell so far away.

                             Another yard sale find that same day.


I'm rereading Clara's delightful cookbook and she's almost got me convinced to stop trying to save steps in the kitchen (a la Lillian Gilbreth) or dreaming about a one-level house, laundry on that level, included (rather than a basement one).

Here's what 94-year-old Clara wrote:

"Always use the stairs. People tell me that I shouldn't be going up and down my stairs at my age, but I need them--they keep me limber. So what if we wear out our shoes if we keep ourselves fit?"

"If you don't think you have time to exercise, just clean your kitchen. I think it's kind of silly--the people jogging. Scrubbing my floors and counters makes everything strong, and my kitchen looks good."

"I like scrubbing the floor clean on my hands and knees with a hard-bristled brush. It doesn't get clean any other way. Sure, there were some things that made life easier, but some things I never really trusted."

There are reasons people like Clara live to be 98. Maybe we should listen to their wisdom, right? They just may be in on a few secrets.

"These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God."   ... Titus 2:4,5


Just a few words from another interesting and sweet obituary from my old hometown in CA:

Matt was a warm, loving husband, a gentle man who loved the out doors. He had many talents … among them, a skilled builder, champion jet skier, motocross rider and snowboarder. A man's man with a tender heart, he was full of life, enthusiastic and up for anything. He possessed a quick sense of humor and was a wonderful cook, happy and always whistling.

He was so loved and will be missed.


And now I return you to your regularly-scheduled summer afternoon.


Free Kindle Books:

The Complete Father Brown Anthology

Gabby Gibson: Middle School Detective

Me, Jill Robinson! Seaside Mystery

My Journey to Live From the Inside Out

Monday, August 22, 2016

A Cool Day and Winning a Different Way

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change."   ... James 1:17


We in Buffalo are currently experiencing a miracle.

Sane weather.

Oh wow, for the first time in too many weeks, I sat outside on the porch this morning and read. I still have the windows open, even.

Truly, what a celebratory thing--and my cup overfloweth.


Did you see that greeny-yellow bowl in the photo, above? In a dusty garage at an estate sale this weekend I picked it up then, in the kitchen, snatched this plaque which my own going-for-the-1970's-look kitchen simply must have:

Love it. Even the little white paint drips.

The house was built in 1946, wasn't fancy or very vintage-dreamy, but oh, look at their view of the Niagara River:

My, my, my.

Anyway, speaking of estate sales, some of you have told me your area never has them.

I can't imagine such a catastrophe! Never being able to walk through old houses, time capsules, not redecorated in decades? Yikes!

But you know? I got to thinking. Different areas have different names for estate sales. Sometimes they're called tag sales or household sales or even house sales. Other times they're advertised as a garage sale and in fine print in the newspaper ad you'll see 'whole house' mentioned.

Just thought I'd pass along that encouraging thought, for hey! You never know. You just may yet be able to 'play Tom and Debra on their weekends'.  It's one terrific sport, indeed. :)


And now in my haste to return to the front porch while I still comfortably can, here's what God's been working into me lately, in a variety of ways, almost like you'd kneed a batch of bread dough (oh dear):

"In relationships, don't try to win, but rather, understand the other person. You'll never find peace if your insecurity feeds your need to always be right."

Ouch. Sometimes we can slide back into old habits without realizing we "Wheeeeeeeeee...." went on that old ride again.

Or am I the only one?


"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."   ... Ephesians 4:32


Enjoy your today, even if it's in such a simple way as Daniel has chosen:


Tom and I super-enjoyed this YouTube video:

A Journey Home: 40th High School Reunion, Niagara Falls High School. 

...even though we didn't graduate from that school, though yes, we're familiar with the area and that added interest. But even so, this video was very well done and to me, had universal appeal, especially if you're interested in the not-too-far-away past of Niagara Falls, NY.

Check it out if you're feeling sentimental and have 25 minutes to spare on a lazy summer afternoon. Lots of retro and bittersweet stuff there.


Free Kindle Books:

Home Before Dark

Edith Wharton: The Complete Collection

Tapas, Carrot Cake and a Corpse


Friday, August 19, 2016

So What Are You Drinking?

"A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones."   ... Proverbs 17:22

"Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."   ... Romans 12:21


So lately it's been like God's encouraging me to drink more.

Let me explain. 

This old world seems twice as bad as usual (and that's saying something) so I'm feeling like I need to absorb, drink, if you will, twice as much of Good Things. You know, so to combat the craziness with a peaceful, calm spirit.

Actually, I've felt God nudging me to watch more Joyce M. and inspirational Youtube videos like Oprah's old episodes (deal with it) and shows where people help others (yes, like Emergency) so I don't just think of myself.

And to meditate more upon the Bible as well as read light-hearted books like ones by Betty MacDonald, Erma Bombeck and Rosemary Taylor so to strengthen my head lest it faint during the News and all that mean-people-stress out there. You know, 'so to keep my head while others are losing theirs.'

Drink-in more, more, more than usual, He says.

And oh! Guess what arrived in my mailbox yesterday?

Oh Clara... I never even met you, but I miss you. How could I not when I read your delightful words like these:

"Pasta with Garlic and Oil... It's still my favorite. I still make it for myself sometimes. I used to use my small pot without the handle to make this. I really loved that pot, but it started getting dangerous lifting it off the hot stove with pliers, so I had to throw it away. I hate to throw things away."

I've bought scads of cookbooks, but Clara's is wildly-awesome. Her stories of Depression Era life invigorate me, push my summer-lazy-self into finally cleaning the bathroom floor beneath the hamper, mowing the lawn, ironing and wiping down the kitchen stove.

I read her book and can't sit still. 

Clara's hard work as a teenager helped her family survive and her words spur me to push past Easyville. I've not told you just how hard this summer's been on me (only hinted), but books like Clara's (and other inspirational outlets mentioned, above) infuse me with what's necessary to more than just survive these humid summer afternoons. With faith and strong hope, I can believe tomorrow will be better.

So what are you drinking--the good stuff? I hope so. Maybe I'll scan the room at the Happiness Within Cafe and see you there. Perhaps we can sit together and count our blessings. 

Now, that would be cool.

"Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again."   ... John 4:13


" ... while evildoers and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it..."   ... 2 Timothy 3:13,14


You know about Clara's Depression era online cooking videos, right?


Oh! I discovered another vintage blog. It's awesome! Find it here:

The Glamorous Housewife  

And while there, I even discovered Retro Depot. Wow! Fun stuff.