Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Do You Need a "Note" Friend?

This art from Kerry Boone has always been a favorite of mine. It's how I feel about sending notes, and receiving notes in my mail box. It's a joy to open the mail box and find a note inside! I got this from a Lang calendar that I bought, and I think Lang also put it on one of their note cards.

It hasn't been my practice to choose a word or verse as mine for a year, but something Paul said in the first chapter of Romans caught my eye and held new meaning for me.

"I long to see you . . . so that you and I can be mutually encouraged by each other's faith."

I recently started reading Romans during my devotion time, and Paul's words stopped me fast!

"I often think that there is nothing so bad as parting with one's friends. One seems so forlorn without them." Jane Austen

Isn't that just how I feel? I left most of my friend's (all actually) back in Maryland, and how I long to see them again. To enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner while we're sitting together chatting about this and that, sharing our lives.

Some of my friends touch base via email once a week, and I love my daily exchanges with my sister, and a very dear friend. A few friends call. A few write notes. And all during those contacts we are encouraging each us, inspiring each other, soothing wounds for each other. I don't want to lose that.

In my new writing room I decided to put up two posters I used when I was speaking about note writing. I wanted to be reminded daily of the service God gave me to encourage others, and remember the joy I have in doing it.

Notes change lives. I have heard and read countless experiences where a note had an everlasting impact for the recipient. That's what happened to me.

Some of my note writing friends have corresponded for years. What a sacred trust and care I have for these ladies. And I'm hoping a few more of my friends will pick up the pen and discover the joy of writing a note and receiving one.

History tells of many relationships that were carried on through the writing of notes and letters. Many famous people were fervent letter writers: Ernest Hemingway, Stonewall Jackson, Ronald Reagan, Eleanor Roosevelt, E. B. White, John Keats, and Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

I've purchased books by these women that help you write notes: Florence Isaacs, Angela Ensminger and Daria Price Bowman. And, I also have my own book that I wrote to help you get started. Although out-of-print, I still have copies if you want to be a serious note writer for God, or know someone who is interested in note writing.

I know writing notes is not every ones forte, but there are some of you who enjoy writing and receiving notes. I'm wondering if there is someone who wants to be a "note" friend? Writing notes through the year to stay in touch while we share kindred hearts.

If you would like to be a "note" friend, please email me at giving me your name, address and a few words to make a connection. Or, there may be someone you know that you should be a note writing friend too.

I'm so glad I read that verse in Romans! I share Paul's love in keeping in touch with those who are far away. Encouragement feeds the heart and opens inspiring thoughts and dreams inside. Do you want to be a "Note" friend?

"Fill my notes with the breathings of my heart . . . and 'to begin, begin.'" Williams Wordsworth, Poet Laureate

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Officially PA

I was accepted! I now have a PA driver's license. You would think it wouldn't be a big deal. Fill out forms, go to office, get license. It didn't work out quite like that.

My birth registration notice wasn't accepted because it wasn't my birth certificate. And my Social Security card wasn't accepted because it was laminated. I hate being rejected. So I had to come home and order them online. Second time around worked. They accepted my identification.

On the way home we stopped by Carpet Barn and bought a rug for the living room. Cranberry. Have I ever been this bold? But Jerry couldn't refuse me.

Ever since I agreed to move to Brookville Jerry said I could have anything I wanted. Pretty bold on his part. I love the colors cranberry and rose, and emerald and sage. Those are the colors in my living room. I can hardly wait until it gets here!

But the very first thing I bought for our move was a chair. I have admired this chair in a catalog for years. And I do mean years. I never thought I'd be able to get it. And when the move came about I decided now was the time.

Here I am in the writing room with my new chair! It is sooo comfortable. Another item on my wish list fulfilled.

I won't show you the rest of the writing room because it is still a mess! Now I have my own chair where I can go to read, write and dream. The ivory throw was a gift from my Sunday School class. It has a cross and Proverbs 11:25 on it. That's the verse I use for my note writing ministry. Thank you girls!

Yes, little by little things are coming together. Mom returns tomorrow from her extended visit with friends and family. Her room was painted last week. I think she'll be pleased.

We found some of our DVDs the other day and watched two of them one evening. It was the first night I truly felt at home. At home. Such a nice thought.

My days are falling into a nice pattern. Unpack a few boxes; straighten a room, read a little. Yes, I think by spring everything will be in order.

We've been here one month now. I still find it amazing how everything fell into place. (Well, except for those two harrowing days of moving!) I'm not sure why I feel amazed. My God is an amazing God!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

It's a New Year! How do you feel?

      The beauty of snow always thrills my heart. "I will wash you as white as snow," our God says.

Oswald Chambers said: "My determination is to be my utmost for His highest . . . Keep yourself before God for this one thing only--my utmost for His highest."

As we begin this new year, I'm sharing parts of a post I wrote in January 2010. It gives me something to think about. I still feel the same way. How do you feel?

I spoke with an elderly woman on New Year’s Day, and the thing I remember most about our conversation is her comment that “I have nothing to look forward too in 2010 except good health.” When she said it my initial thought was “that’s sad.” Since then, I’ve been pondering that comment. Will I feel like that when I’m in my 80s? I don’t think so.

"We have to decide," Chambers says. "Surrender your will to Him absolutely and irrevocably . . . Keep your life so constant in its contact with God that His surprising power may break out on the right hand and on the left. Live in a constant state of expectancy."

"I know one thing I will still be able to do: pray! (if I have my mind.) What a glorious thing! There is nothing more important than talking to God. Interceding for others and their concerns is a BIG thing.

I will be at the portals of heaven very soon. I long for that moment now, so I’ll be very happy my day of leaving earth for life with the Father will be close.

I will have memories, if I have my mind. Remembering those things in the past that brought joy and happiness will capture the moments in my days. Yes, sad memories will be there too, but I have a feeling they won’t be as important as I grow close to heaven’s doors.

Although some friends will have passed away, I’m sure there will be a handful I can still communicate with. There will be a large circle of friends that I have made on my journey through life and we will encourage each us. Their love helped me all through the years and it won’t stop when I am older.

These thoughts are my hope if I reach the age of 80. Of course, my greatest hope is in Jesus. God has given us the greatest gift of all to see us through our time on earth. And He will be waiting for us when we go home.

I've chosen "The One Year Book of Encouragement" as my devotion book this year. I live in a new home, a new town, a new church and hopefully I will find new friends. I need all the encouragement I can get!

                   "I want to scale the utmost height, and catch a gleam of glory bright;
                  But still I'll pray, till heaven I've found, Lord, lead me on to higher ground!"
                                                                                            Johnson Oatman, Jr. and Charles H. Gabriel

I have a lot to look forward too. The choice is before you. You just have to take it! I hope you have something to look forward too!

"I am determined to be absolutely and entirely for Him and Him alone."

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Agony of Moving, Part 2

It's been two weeks since those two dreadful days of moving into our new home ended. Nerves have settled and we're going about unpacking and sorting fairly calmly. But let me tell you about the day after our move in.

The house was full of boxes, as I'm sure each one of you have experienced before. My writing room was so full I couldn't unpack anything because there was no place to put anything. I couldn't even walk into the closet.

The only boxes I could start unpacking were for the kitchen. I knew my dream of having everything upstairs so I wouldn't have to go downstairs was not to be.

Late afternoon Jerry got a call from one of his friends asking what he could do to help. In less than an hour, Jacob brought three others with him and they very quickly took 40 some boxes downstairs. There were those tears of joy again.

After that day, little by little, the living room and writing room started to take shape.

But not without injury.

It was a happy day when the Comcast technician knocked on our door and brought Internet and cable back into our lives. He put new wire both inside and outside down to the road. It felt so good to log on once again.

Abby and Jo are enjoying their new yard.

Only found one thing broken so far, and one of Jerry's airplanes had a crash landing.

The other day we went to get our driver's license and were rejected. The identification we brought wasn't good enough for them and we had to send away for just the right certificates and cards. Once the new ones are received, hopefully they'll grant us driving privileges in the state of PA.

We have another resident living in our home, and it loves the girls treats! I hear it in the middle of the night, and this morning I actually saw it walk across the stove. Jerry promises me that he will give it a good home. We can't afford to feed another resident with the girls treats! They don't like to share.

Christmas found one scene of decorations this year. I was way too tired to even think about putting out decorations. But this small poinsettia and candle, and the snowman and deer scene kept me smiling on Christmas day! Couldn't get the light to work right for the picture. I enjoyed the scene all Christmas Day!

The new year will be here soon. We'll be starting a whole new life in the country. I'll be on the lookout for new beginnings! The agony of moving has ended! (Well, that is when Jerry finally gets that mouse!)

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Agony of Moving

                                                 A joyful beginning to a frustrating day.

Wouldn't it sound better if I titled this post: "The Joy of a Move"? All the decisions, planning, packing, settlement and moving the contents out of our house fell into place just about perfectly. But what an adventure its been when we arrived in Brookville!

An unexpected snow storm had passed through Brookville dumping 7 inches of snow on the land. Flurries were still floating around and did all afternoon the day we arrived by noon.

The mover's tractor trailer arrived soon after we did, and a plow truck was called to clear the way up to the house. There was 2 inches of ice under the freshly, fallen snow.

The tractor trailer started in and got stuck, so a big tow truck was called to pull them out. It was a little hairy there for awhile.

When the tractor trailer was pulled free it parked on the other side of the road, and Jerry went to rent a large U-Haul truck. The shuttle began.

Then, to our wondering eyes, a couple Jerry is friends with arrived with this delicious New England Stew and homemade apple pie! There were tears of joy!

The movers moved our load from the tractor trailer to the U-Haul to the house and back again to load up. Night fell quickly, and they wanted to go home. Their office wanted them to stay overnight, and we offered to put them up at the Quality Inn, but they refused. So back they went to Maryland with all our things. They did bring in our bed. The house was empty otherwise.

So Jerry, me and the girls went to bed together, all in one bed, all night. I wish I'd had my camera so I could have gotten a snap of us!

After a good, but tight sleep we awoke to our winter wonderland. I decided it was a new day. Our belongings would be here in the afternoon.

The seller said the house would be clean and empty (it wasn't when we settled the week before). So I was not pleased when I opened the refrigerator door and saw this"

And we soon discovered there were a lot of little things that needed repair and cleaning. If you've read earlier posts you know I'd never seen the house in person, only pictures. Jerry beware!

The movers arrived early afternoon and started bringing our items into the house. It was a long day.

But to brighten our day a lovely bouquet of flowers was delivered! Our friends, Barry and Kim sent them. They couldn't have arrived at a more perfect time.

And just when we thought the last load would be unloaded, the driver decided to come up thru the grass and got the U-Haul stuck. It was a very long day.

When all was said and done that night, we both agreed the house had potential and we love the extra land, not being as close to neighbors and the house farther from the road.

The moving in was done. The unpacking begun.

Stay tune for part 2!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Traveling Along

Later this morning we'll be driving the road to our new home. I can't believe it's really happening. And God has been with us every step of the way.

Tomorrow morning I'll walk into my new home and see it for the very first time. I've seen pictures and a pencil layout, but I haven't put my foot through the front door to see it in person.

I'll enjoy its presence for about an hour and then we leave again to come home. Our home for the last 31 years. Our only home as a married couple.

December 14th is our 31st anniversary and we'll celebrate it in our new home. Starting a new life in a new area during this season of years.

Please pray for us these next few weeks. We're not young chickens anymore. But our batteries are still going and we'll do our best while making this move.

 In Sunday School this past Sunday we were led to Malachi 4, verse 2: "But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves." I don't think we'll be frolicking like calves, but we'll give it our best try!

Here we go!