Monday, August 28, 2023

August This And That

"The Lord is so very good and His mercy endures forever."


1.) Guess what? 

Hobbit Cottage will be repainted this week. I can't believe we'd seriously toyed with waiting until next year! Stepping around with the painter, those yellow outside walls looked dreadful. Just pathetic.

We've hired the same guy (of excellence) who painted our basement last October. How grateful we are to know we can trust him.

The color? Basically the same light yellow as before, but this time the trim will be painted, as well. White, of course.

We can't wait until it's all finished!

2.) Speaking of paint, after all the shabby chic/cottagecore videos (found new ones here), I'm doing bits of painting here upstairs. Here's a peek so far--

I left the top light-yellow because I like the way it reflects the light, plus, I became tired of painting. Er hem. Probably I'll paint the dollhouse, light-pink.


              This still needs a second coat, plus I'll repaint a couple frames.

And as with all my photos, everything looks nicer in-person.  シ

Only in the mornings does this room receive direct sunlight so choosing light colors (and lots of lamps) makes life up here, brighter. One must do what one must do to bring light into her rooms--and Life. 

She should not wait for others to do it for her.

3.) Lots of years had passed since Tom and I binged on a new-to-us tv series, but for the past 10 days we've watched Superman and Lois. 

Fun stuff, especially if you enjoy superhero/family/small town stories. We're watching by way of HBO Max (via a work friend's subscription) and are nearing the end of season 3, the final one so far.

We do chuckle over how often the characters apologize to each other. Of course, it's wonderful to be able to say, "I'm sorry,"(yes!), yet it's even better not to make the same ol' mistakes in the first place.  シ

4.) Charlie the Cat is lightening up! Totally taking over the upstairs and having adventures downstairs at night under the cover of darkness. 

The way he meows for attention from me is rather wild and he's slowly warming up to Tom. He's only been here 2 weeks and, considering all things, is enjoying his new home.

5.)  Anyone else anticipating Autumn? Oh, the humidity of this summer and the storm and smoke clouds and steamy rain (so.much.rain.), but this week we are cool and sunny.

Whenever Autumn arrives, it's as though I experience a reunion with the real, true Debra, the one who no longer feels wiped-out and daily-weary by Summer--

--and how good to become reacquainted, to recall who God created her to be.

6.)  Hooray! The latest Pumpkin Falls book came out this week and my copy arrived after lunch. The first 2 books were perfect, the 3rd was good, and I'm hoping we'll have another winner with this 4th book,one appearing to be autumnal (yay!).

Read about the 1st book here. Or here's the actual book for you to read free online.

7.) Some things just cannot be explained, right? 
Well, often I watch mobile home sales tours at Youtube. 

I enjoyed the still-vintage kitchen of this one, as well as the colors used on walls, furniture, curtains, etc., and the overall design. 

And of course, the Florida room. Oh how I always envy appreciate those. Oh my.

8.) And wow! This woman is a true decorative artist. Man, what she did to her oh-so-blah kitchen! She's planning to tear it all out in a couple years, but I would, most likely, keep it forever.

Be still my heart.

9.)  And let's throw in this for good measure:

10. --- and never, ever forget this:

Follow Grace! Always follow Grace and you'll never be lacking any good thing. Whatever you begin, she'll help you finish.


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

The Wrong Time For Acceptance

"Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord...   --- Acts 3:19


Yikes, July! Such a downer month circumstance-wise for Tom and me. I only told you some of the sad/bad parts.

And well, uh, er, my mind dwelled too long on the bad stuff and I became the kind of complainer I once was.

Not good. 

My daily, calm joyfulness was replaced with discouragement, disatisfaction and grumbling. (And the humidity and grey skies of this smokey, rainy summer only worsened things.) 

What a test! Probably I got straight D's. Oh dear.

But then on Saturday God sent me this video. Whew. The young man shared a creepy dream he'd received showing what happens when doors open after we've done what we know to be wrong. 

If your joy seems to be hiding, I hope you'll click that link, heed his advice and let him pray for you at the end.

Ever since Saturday and that video and a bit of repentance? I've returned to my happy, everything's-gonna-be-alright self. Truly. Set. Free.

Which reminds me: never let any spiritual heavy-weighted cloak cover you for long. Don't just accept and live beneath that dark thing! Instead, ask God what you can do to fling it away, then He'll do His part with the rest. 

Why waste any day under heaviness when we could have consistently danced in the light?

When the majority of our days are filled with light, may we be quick to notice when a shadow rolls in (and then make changes), rather than just hunkering down for the storm.

... But (Jesus) came that they may have and enjoy life and have it in abundance until it overflows."   --- John 10:10 Amp.

Is complaining really a big deal to God? Judge for yourself:

"And the people complained in the hearing of the Lord about their misfortunes, and when the Lord heard it, his anger was kindled, and the fire of the Lord burned among them and consumed some outlying parts of the camp."    
... From Numbers chapter 11


Guess what?

We have a new cat. He's 2-years-old and we named him Charlie.

The folks at the SPCA didn't even interrogate interview us in a concrete-walled room as we'd thought they might.  ツ

The first night? Charlie hid beneath the entertainment center. Sigh. Next morning I removed nearly everything from it, Naomi sat ready to grab Charlie, then Tom and I tipped the entertainment center forward.

It worked. (Tom then affixed a board permanently to the tiny space Charlie had squeezed under.)

The next three days we kept Charlie in the bathroom which is hiding-place-less. heh. We spent lots of time with him and discovered he's really a very loving cat!

This morning we let him out of the bathroom and now he's upstairs hiding under the guest bed. 

Oh well. 

We'll give him time and most likely one day he'll be walking around like he owns the place just as Daniel did.


Books I read in July:

Absolutely Truly
Live Alone and Like It
The Ghost Rock Mystery
The Haunted Pool

(Oh and please note: If any title ever sounds 'spooky', know those are kids' lit. books and always there's a simple not-ghostly solution to every mystery.)  ツ


Interested in cottage style decorating? This young woman describes the differences between four different types and she includes lovely photos, as well.



Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Tuesday, August 08, 2023

Where She Hung a Little Wallpaper Then Realized ---

As we grow older it becomes vital to remind ourselves far more often what we can do rather than what we cannot.


So yesterday I hung that tiny bit of wallpaper in our kitchen. Took me two whole hours! Eegads.

Of course, that includes climbing down the basement stairs for my aluminum ladder, then back up. Then stepping upstairs for the yard stick and of course wiping down the old wallpaper, washing all the frames, etc.

Peel and stick wallpaper is definitely easier (yes! I hope you'll try it someday.). I even papered over the previous yellow plaid and left in the screws for the frames (when you've used as much wallpaper as I have, you learn tricks), but even so. 

Afterward I felt exhausted. Crawled upstairs and took a nap. Moved like a zombie while fixing lunch.

Man, this getting older stuff, right?

Yet I do love the way the wallpaper turned out. I wanted drama there and certainly got it. (If I knew how to miter corners, I'd frame it with molding.) But no, I'll not be hanging more: that's Tom's countertop area beside it and the daily drama (mega stuff) is plenty. Don't want overkill. heh.

What I truly and finally admitted to myself? No way could I ever redecorate a different house on planet Earth. I'll have to wait for Heaven--and that's ok. Finally I can admit that. 

Oh, I could hire someone, perhaps, yet that's not the same (and usually a headache, I hear).

But once again, acceptance comes along. If hanging a simple bit of (easier) wallpaper took 2 hours and exhausted me, that's a clue--and I'll be wise to heed it. To admit I've changed.

Yet today's gratitude? That I used my younger decades to do scads of decorating in a handful of houses. That I spent my days, my years, my self, giddily splashing around in rampant creativity while I still could--

--while I had energy. Desire. And dear Grace who--always--knows the best time to do all things. (If I'd listened only to my own feelings through the years, oh the many failures.)

And to you I would say this: whatever you're procrastinating, do it now or at least begin it now while you can still create your special projects and memories. 

Timing truly is everything.

Seasons. Life becomes easier when we respect (and accept) the seasons of our years.

To me, we learn lessons regarding our current life in layers. Not all at once, but over time. That is, if we pay attention.


Something I can still do? Make upgrades around Hobbit Cottage.

Like, I replaced the cheapo hanging shower caddy I'd gotten from Dollar Tree with a higher quality one. Only took me 12 years. (Sheesh.)

Upon the tiny bathroom cabinet beside our sink, I placed a skinny marble cheese board which just fit. It added a touch of class. No, really, it did. ッ

Katherine at Do It On a Dime alerted me to some new-fangled metal basket label clips which you simply hang from basket handle openings (or the long sides)--

These are a zillion times better than using the sticky type which all fell off years ago, after which I reattached them with super glue (and promptly glued all my fingers together. What a mess.)

Waay back at our apartment, the glass in a cheap frame of a favorite print, broke. Since then it's hung without the glass and looked bad. Finally I thought to place that print inside a frame I was using for one I no longer liked. Gracious. Only took around 15 years for that one. (Good grief.)

Oh, and because daily drinking coffee is supposed to keep gout away, we purchased a small single cup Keurig-type machine. I still say my stove top pot makes the best coffee, but Tom needed something not so labor intensive. 

And yes, we only use the little basket that came with it to pour ground coffee into rather than any ready-filled Keurig cups. Tom says this makes it rather labor-intensive for him, yet he enjoys saving money, too.  ッ

You get the idea, right? How wonderful the gift to view things with fresh eyes and make pleasant, helpful changes.

Oh! And speaking of Tom, for two years he and I have worked on decluttering his office and room most Sunday afternoons. We spend only around 15 minutes. Color me thankful that he's not one of those guys who's quick to quip: "I like my stuff and there's no way I'm gettin' rid of it."  Whew.


And I forgot to mention last time that with Mixbook you can make all the photo books you want for free. Online ones, that is. Your friends can even (again for free) view them online when you've finished.

Need a new hobby? That's an incredible one. Techno-educational, too.

"Your life is worth documenting."   --- copied


---and a big thank-you to all who congratulated me on 19 years here! I appreciated each comment so much.


Playing around with photo filters.  :)

Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Thursday, August 03, 2023

A Blogiversary Plus a Different Sort of Giveaway

"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing."   --- 1 Thessalonians 5:11


So way back on July 25th, my 19th blogiversary came around. Nineteen years blogging! 

Why didn't I say anything? My heart felt like it was, uhm, limping back then (other not-mentioned stuff happened) and I didn't feel much like celebrating anything. Er hem.

But now I do.  ツ 

One thing I love about God is how He can 'restore our soul' and return lightness in just days. The way He truly does makes all things new.

And today? Color me extra grateful, including for the privilege of writing a blog, sharing Life lessons, and knowing you, my faithful readers.

Thank-you! Always, thank-you.

Now, sometimes I do giveaways on blogiversaries and today I'll do a never-before-done one. My current book I'm creating at Mixbook? The one that's a combination of decorating magazine, encouragement book, autumn celebration and (hey, can't help it) cat memorial? 

Upon its soon completion, I'll give away 4 copies. 

But there's a catch. I already know the 'winners'. They are Betsy and Pam who comment here after nearly all my blog posts(!) And Anne who comments most faithfully over at Facebook as does Linda at MeWe.

God rewards faithful encouragers and I also enjoy doing so. May these ladies know I notice every kind word and the ways they encourage me to avoid the 'delete blog' button and to keep writing. 

God tells me also, but it's lovely hearing it from friends, as well.

Yet to all who have ever commented here or at Facebook, MeWe or in Real Life, please know every word makes this whole blogging experience sweeter, more appreciated and lots more smile-worthy.

Thanks to each of you. Seriously. Year after year.

And to Betsy, Pam, Anne and Linda: pease send me your mailing address at Thanks! 
Your book will arrive hopefully in around 3 weeks, depending upon when I actually finish it (er hem) and the extra publishing time.

Our free trial at Apple Plus is finished, but oh my. We so enjoyed Best Foot Forward, especially the movie theater episode (#8?). One of the funniest things I'd watched in years.

Also, the first episode listed there of (the new)Amazing Stories was incredible. At its end, it's as though my heart stepped down from the tv screen and back into my body (which is something that used to happen often in the old great-tv days, but not so much anymore). 
The episode is called The Cellar. For a small price it can also be watched via Prime and perhaps other places. If you like time travel stories, you'll love it. Guaranteed.

My current favorite tv commercial? This one. Oh my, I never tire of it. So funny and how important to be able to laugh at ourselves (watch to see what I mean).

Remember: we need each other.

"Don't be afraid to start again, You are not starting from scratch; you're starting from experience."   
--- Shawn Bolz


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Tuesday, August 01, 2023

Got Communication?

"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver."   --- Proverbs 25:11


(Don't worry. Tom knows about this post. heh.)


So after we lost Daniel the Cat, Tom got a little weird.

Years past whenever he'd walk by Daniel on the red couch, he'd pause, pat Daniel on the head, speak lovingly to him, offer him treats, etc. After I'd go upstairs to bed, he'd sit beside Daniel or lay next to him upon the carpet. You know.

Well, that sad, sad week after Daniel went away, Tom would walk past me on the red couch, pat me on the head, stoop to kiss me, talk sweetly, etc. 

"Gracious!", I thought. "This man needs another cat."  シ

Then he kept ramping up this behavior and I kept saying, "But I'm still in mourning for Daniel! Your romance timing feels off and do I detect a bit of mid-life crisis happening?"

But still he persisted until finally I paused our tv show one evening, turned to him, and then asked, "Okay. It's time to tell me what's really happening here."

And for the next hour we had one of the best talks in all our decades together.

My, my, my. To place it into one sentence: For too long we'd had too many holes in our communication filled with too many assumptions.You'd think after 44 years we could read each other's minds, but hey. I guess not.

Talk about 'clearing the air'! The new atmosphere of Hobbit Cottage feels exactly like that. Fresh. Cleaned-out. New.

The air wasn't even bad, exactly, before that, but just not as wonderful as it could've been.

For years God's convicted us about making assumptions in all areas of Life, how they too often lead to mistakes, misunderstandings and a need for apologies afterward.

And now? More than ever we get it. Always choose communication over assumptions and truth over the lies floating around your head, for on the other (godly) side is a brighter land of light and freedom. 

But the gate to that glowing, gleaming place? It only opens with the password of Honesty. Open, humbling, honesty.

Never believe the burden clinging to you today will still be yours tomorrow. God can bring clarity, light and freedom in a single day if we simply do what He asks.

And for Heaven's sake, let's all keep our sense of humor these days, ok?


You know how it's possible to grow used to the scratched, broken-down, shredded things around our homes, right?

Well, lately I'm going after them. 

Like, I bought these--

--then went around coloring-in all the scratches on our furniture, cupboards and wooden frames. (This one was fun, I mean, who doesn't like coloring?)

Our 15-year-old front porch rug was all shredded on the side, so I bought a new, smaller one which doesn't reach to the rug-ripping patio chair legs.

I replaced our small, super-ugly brown back porch rug with a cheerful, cherry red one.

I rearranged items in our hutch. Here's my favorite portion (with a camera editing filter on it) --

And although I still like the yellow wallpaper on the skinny chimney wall of our kitchen--

--now I want more drama there. Plus, I've been itching to try out the new peel and stick wallpapers, so I chose a replica Arts And Crafts era type from Wayfair--

Example only. Not our house.

--especially since we have a few leftover items from our Craftsman days, plus, I just love it, what with the birds and all. Both Tom and I enjoy our yard's wildlife.

Can't wait till I hang it!

There's more, but you get the idea.

My goal? To look around all corners and walls of my home and love the way I've decorated them.

It's that simple. And that difficult.  ッ


Enjoy the color pink? You might like this, also.


And as I shared at Facebook:

"If you want to enjoy your walk with God, you have to be quick to forgive."

---Joyce Meyer

"And the truth will set you free."

Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15