Tuesday, March 31, 2009
~You are such a big girl now, in a hurry to grow up and be a Mommy, just like your Mommy, my daughter. Remember though, we want you to stay little just a bit longer so we can enjoy your happy ways, your constant laughter and delight in the simple blessings we often take for granted. We want to listen to you talk about Jesus, and your prayers for the many, many people you have a soft heart and concern for...and of course, enjoy the teasing you love to dish out and also take back with gusto! ~And Grandpa and I are so happy you have chosen to spend your birthday with US !
~We love you little one, Happy Birthday!~
Monday, March 30, 2009
~This is an old photograph of the author of the poem, with her step- mother Ida, and her sister Elaine. The poem is written by Audrey Yeager, a dear friend, to her sister.~ ~SISTERS~
If hearts had the power to grab, and tell,
Oh,how you would believe!
If love, so deep and steadfast,
could force truth upon you,
Oh! Yes! I would force it!
You must be with me in this,
With me in life, real life,
endless, glorious real life,
Not through limited family relationships,
Not only till the aches and wrinkles
Not only 'Till our bloom fades, and wilts, and falls;
No! No! More! So much more!
I just want to hold you tightly
Against my dearest dream,
Pressing you into it until it becomes
Your dream too.
Oh , Jesus tell her
Help her to know
That your good news is good indeed;
That she can live an amazingly glorious eternity
Yes, certainly! Without a doubt!
I would make you believe if I could; for at some point in the
Future, when Heaven is my home,
I want to turn around and see you walking toward me, so I
Can run to greet you,
Crying out , " Dear Sister!
I knew I would meet you here!"
~"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son the whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16~
Saturday, March 28, 2009
A glimpse of shepherding in the Middle East, not much changed over the centuries.This is an excerpt from a letter I received in 2006 from our oldest son who was in Iraq, courtesy of the U.S.M.C. Knowing I love my sheep and am interested in sheep and shepherds he wrote......."one night I was looking through the thermals and about 1200 meters away there was a flock of about 1000 sheep down in a wadi and three huge hyenas were charging towards the flock and out of the middle of the flock came four dogs and attacked the hyenas. As soon as the hyenas took off about 20 dogs ( wild, feral ) came in to attack the sheep. The four guard dogs attacked them ( wild dogs ) but two of the wild dogs got a sheep . When the guard dogs got done with the pack of wild dogs they went to save the injured sheep and chased the last two wild dogs off. Meanwhile, the shepherd woke up and was standing there. It was pitch black out so he probably did not know what was going on, but he went to find the wounded sheep and all four dogs started to follow him. The shepherd pointed at the flock , it was too far for me to hear what he said, and if I could have heard him I wouldn't be able to understand him, but three of his dogs went back and posted and one followed him as he went out to look for his sheep. They never did find the sheep. I watched as the sheep limped off to the east, but when the shepherd got tired of looking he came back to his sheep and lay down in the middle of the flock and went to sleep.I guess it was warm in the middle of the 999 sheep, no...I don't know how many sheep there were, but when the shepherd lay down all four of his dogs posted. One to the north, one to the south, one to the east, and one to the west. Pretty neat to watch....." ~This shepherd, unlike The Shepherd, was unable to save the lost and injured sheep. "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. He who is a hireling, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, beholds the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. He flees because he is a hireling and not concerned about the sheep. I am the good shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know Me, even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep." John 10: 11-15 ~Just a comment about risking life for the sheep. My son told me some horror stories about the wild dogs and hyenas in the Middle East...and they are a threat to people, beyond anything we here in the U.S. are familiar with. So really, the shepherd and his dogs were shepherding at the risk of harm to themselves. Alas, there is only one perfect Shepherd!
Friday, March 27, 2009
~This is Li-li sitting in a dog food dish.No, she is not the dog's dinner, she is the dogs' boss! She is named Luck of the Irish but called Li-Li, because these are the initials of a long name. Li-li has no eyes. ~ Breezy, our daughter-in-law , found Li-li by the side of the road on a winter's night. A very, very, cold( 25 degrees below zero cold) night. She was a teeny tiny kitten with very badly infected eyes. It is doubtful she ever had the ability to see because her eyes were so infected at such an early age it is probable they were damaged before her kitten eyes ever opened.Our Breezy is very tenderhearted, and brought the kitten home to show our son Daniel, her husband. Now Daniel can spot a big vet bill in the making and here was a little kitty in sorry shape, one they did not own, and one he was not about to be responsible for. Yeah, right! ~Our son later told me that he firmly said NO!!! to the idea of taking the kitten to the vet, but when Breezy broke down in tears, well...what do you think?My son set a limit on the vet bill and said if the vet could not fix the kitten for that amount she was to have the kitten put down. Apparently the vet is a softie too, because the procedures should have cost a lot more but the vet stayed well within the limit set. Anyway, the vet discovered one eye had already burst from the infection and took it out and cleaned the socket , sent Breezy home with antibiotics. But alas, the other eye succumbed to infection too. ~You would not know Li-li is blind. From an early age that cat could control the animals in the house. She knows her way around and often will reach out and snatch me as I pass by her. I have seen her lift her head and seem to stare at things out the window. She is amazing. She is loved, and she is part of the family.
~Breezy still rescues cats, and Jack Russell terriers, and people. Our Miss Marple is one of Breezy's rescues. Thank-you Breezy, we love you.~
Thursday, March 26, 2009
~This creepy crawlie has been popping up all over our home...on the stairs in the morning as I make my way down for my first cup of coffee. On the bedroom carpet as I finally head for bed , very late , in the dark. But not too dark to be startled by this creature. It shows up in my craft room in my wool and downstairs....but how? It is a plastic spider my sisters hid in one of the bags I brought home from our Sisters Re-Union( February 10, 2009 post ). Who did my sisters enlist to carry on this little scare tactic,this reign of terror, who would exploit my one big fear, SPIDERS !?! WHO ?.....
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
~I was so filled with joy at the good news for us today that I felt like making one of my Hubby's favorite dinners. I am one of those people who under stress, or too busy...forget to eat. I even forget my Hubby needs to eat...poor Hubby. Well, I would prepare a good meal for him tonight. See ? ( above ) Meat loaf with acorn squash , home made coleslaw, and mushrooms sauteed in butter. I know, the baked potatoes are missing but I forgot to buy potatoes and did not want to make the trip to town just for potatoes..O.K., just slap me if you're upset I dislike potatoes. Anyway, Hubby said the baked acorn squash with butter and brown sugar was just fine and dandy. But hey, he had chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, REAL homemade butter cream chocolate ( with real butter ) frosting! ~Anyway, there are several things that are true about meat loaf that make it the perfect meat for dinner....
- Meat loaf can contain ANY type of ground meat, or any combo of ground meats!
- Meat loaf is a good companion dish to potatoes ( yuck )
- Meat loaf is the meal that if I tell my Hubby we will be having it for dinner, and something happens that I am unable to actually prepare and serve it for dinner, why...it can pretty much ruin my Hubby's day, because......
- If he knows we are having meat loaf for dinner he looks forward to dinner ALL day and
- he believes the best reason of all to have meat loaf for dinner is the meat loaf sandwiches for lunch the NEXT day! ( below)
MEAT LOAF FORMULA
- 2 cups fine soft bread crumbs, or rolled oats, or crackers
- 2/3 cup finely chopped peeled onion
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup milk, or tomato sauce, or red wine, or ?( liquid )
- 2 eggs
- 2 pounds of ground meat in any combination,I have used pork and venison, hamburger and pork, hamburger and turkey...or 2 pounds of just beef...you get the picture. Hey , you could use 2 pounds of rattlesnake and ground rabbit if you want.
Although I always use this formula, my meat loaves vary because I vary seasonings, types of bread crumbs,liquids,and sometimes add chopped herbs . So my meat loaves are reliably firm and slice easily, but taste is always slightly different. Keeps things exciting in the kitchen...and that's the truth about meat loaf here at Cedar Pond and I am sticking to this story.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
~4th sister,7th grandchild~
~Four of many reasons to thank you Lord, and today I am so very thankful for all your prayers. I was prepared to give thanks for however God allowed things to go in court ," Be anxious for nothing, but in EVERYTHING by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." Phil.4:6 and today it was especially easy to give thanks, the judge dismissed a particular petition to the court, which is WONDERFUL news for our son and his daughters. ~He does have to fly down to appear in court April 3rd, for another petition, and prayers on behalf of the little girls are welcome. But for now, they are able to continue in the school they are thriving in , and rest peacefully at night, in their new home , and enjoy safety and continuity in their lives....play with kittens, dogs, ride horses....
"Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think. according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in Christ Jesus..." Ephesians 3:20-21
Monday, March 23, 2009
~The portrait above is our oldest son and his four daughters . It was taken a year and a half after the photo below. The photo below was taken just before our son's 2nd deployment to Iraq, when he thought he had everything a man could want. A happy marriage, 4 healthy daughters, a career as a Marine ( tanker ) and he just knew he would retire and enjoy his family and life. Life is full of surprises isn't it? ~He came home from Iraq to find his whole life turned upside down, inside out, and began the fight of his life to save his 4 daughters from a life no sane person should want for 4 very young little girls.....but do you know, apparently it takes a criminal offense, harm to a child,or worse, before the obvious sinks in to those who should know better.
~".....but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble , it is better for him that a heavy millstone be hung around his neck, and that he be dropped into the depth of the sea." Matthew 18:6~~These 4 little girls cried out to our son and anyone who would listen, begging our son, their father, to take them to someone who could help them NOT have to be around certain individuals who they were afraid of and harmed them.....apparently CPS in a certain very southern, coastal state bordering Mexico is overwhelmed and unable to do more than tell some parents they need to go to parenting classes, then release the children BACK to said parent!And we wonder why crimes against children are increasing .....What can a parent do when the courts will go all out to reinforce absurd and harmful rulings, so that our son could be arrested for NOT returning his daughters to such potentially destructive living conditions? ~Well, because there was actual, legal proof of bad conditions for children when not with their father( who cares that the children themselves, all friends and family of BOTH parents, testified and wrote about bad, bad, bad conditions when girls were not with our son) our son was given 50 / 50 custody of his daughters and allowed to remove them to our state, his home and legal residence. ~ Tuesday, there will be another court hearing in that certain southern, coastal state bordering Mexico, regarding the girls residence, etc.., Why did I write this? Because I am requesting that if the little girls and their father come to mind that you send up a prayer to God for the truth to prevail. That the judge reads the documents and sees them for what they are. I am requesting prayer for the safety and well being of the little girls who are very happy, thriving, and successful in their lives as they and their father rebuild them in Washington with the help of our youngest son and his wife.
~"See to it that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you, that their angels in heaven continually behold the face of My Father who is in heaven." Matthew 18:10
Blessings: that the little girls have been kept safe, that our son came home safely from Iraq, God has provided for our son and his daughters, family and friends who have prayed faithfully for us
Sunday, March 22, 2009
It was music night tonight in our home fellowship. And boy oh boy are we blessed with musicians of amazing God-given talent! Above is Frank Dutra on the saxophone. I believe I have stated before, this man on his worst day of playing the horn is better than most on their best day!And we get to hear him most every Saturday we meet and break bread. You have got to hear him play Amazing Grace on that sax...... Tonight we had a special guest and brother in the Lord, Patrick Dennis! My Hubby and I went to high school with him and have re-connected, to our blessing. What a talented musician he is. He makes stringed instruments come to life....they speak and sing at his finger tips...yes they do! Here Patrick is playing a mandola....
and even more special guests...our sister Audrey gave us some precious time with her daughter from Montana, Denise...who brought along..and played, her banjo AND guitar, and the other sister, Renee played harmonica....these girls can sing too!We met in the home of the Wingmaster, and here he is playing his guitar, AND the drums, along with Denise on guitar, Frank on sax, Patrick on one of his guitars on the side. Most of us were singing along and enjoying the bounty of instruments and people able to play them! Let's not forget the food....there was a lot of food! Here is the chocolate cake and Pasta Pie we brought. The pasta pie was made at home, then we put it into the oven and baked it when we arrived at the Wingmaster's home and oh my goodness ! Delicious!!! For the recipe check out Noble Pig's Blog. The instrument below is a Dobro. It belongs to Patrick. My son-in-law, Birdy Balaku, recorded most of tonight's music, but Hubby and I cannot seem to get it downloaded. We will figure out how to do this for another Sunday post, but for now, please enjoy this video shown below this picture. And by the way, we wish you were able to meet with us for fellowship and breaking the bread and partaking of the cup in communion . You're welcome to come on over any time we meet! Our next musical gathering will be in April! ~"Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands, serve the Lord with gladness....." Ps. 100~
Saturday, March 21, 2009
~Little girl in a big hat, our #3 Granddaughter, 2nd oldest sister of four, 3rd granddaughter of 6 granddaughters, 4th grandchild of 8 grandchildren, Happy birthday to you most precious one!~
~Look at the belt buckle and ribbon she won in the rodeo! Uncle Daniel said she is a natural with horses. He KNOWS horses and if he says she is a natural, then she is. To see this little slip of a girl riding a big horse with confidence, and she is in control of the horse.....a sight and picture to behold. It is a good thing for her to have horses in her life.~
Friday, March 20, 2009
~Why were we driving 6 hours one way, only to return home, another 6 hours , within a 24 hour period?We got a phone call two weeks ago from our oldest granddaughter, " Grandma, can you and Poppa come watch my concert?" Well, of course ! Wouldn't miss it. The elementary school was putting on a program about the Gold Rush in American history. However, Hubby had to be back at work on Thursday. (#1 Granddaughter above, singing in school performance) ~So Wednesday, at 4:00 A.M., YES.........4:00 A.M., my Hubby and I were on our way over the mountains to be at our Granddaughters' 2:00 in the afternoon school program. We were prepared for the 5 to 6 hour drive. Water, food, snacks, pillows and blankets should the mountain passes be closed for avalanche control measures. Books on tape, coffee. We arrived in plenty of time , the passes were clear and driving was easy.
~ Granddaughter is looking back and waving at me during the concert, in which she and fellow students performed various square dances.
~Hubby and I, with our oldest and youngest granddaughters, and daughter-in-law, Breezy , posing for a picture after the performance.~~Back at home, the granddaughters are excited. They are showing us their room, their special toys, talking and singing and dancing....here the three oldest girls show us the awards and prizes they won riding their horse in gaming competitions at a rodeo last week. The middle granddaughter is the big winner. She won a belt buckle and Grand Champion award in the rodeo. The granddaughter on the right won the hat she is wearing along with the ribbon. I think this was pretty special for them.
~ Youngest granddaughter and I were watching the horses out the window, and she had a lot to tell me about horses, dogs, her sisters..and " can I sit next to you at dinner?"~~Breezy prepared a big turkey dinner and we all sat around the table visiting and just enjoying being together. Poppa got to snuggle the happy granddaughters. After they all went to bed, we visited for a little bit longer, then Hubby and I headed back over the mountains and home. We arrived home around 3:45 a.m. and went straight to bed. Hubby had to go to work . I slept so soundly I did not awake until after noon. I do not know how Hubby managed today. But as he went to bed tonight he said " remind me we can't do that again, drive all night and day, without sleep." And I will. I think next time we will spend the night, but we are sure glad we got to see our granddaughters...and our sons and Breezy.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
~I am going to visit my sons and their families today! Four of my granddaughters live there and granddaughters love cookies. Especially Grandma's cookies.( The sons and daughter-in-law love cookies too)I baked a LOT of cookies today. Chocolate chip cookies, and oatmeal cookies. ~Here is the recipe for very, very, good chocolate chip cookies. In fact, my sons baked these for the fairs when they were in 4H and our oldest son won a grand champion ribbon for them, so I can call them........
PRIZE WINNING CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES~Of course I had to eat a few cookies, just to make sure they tasted O.K. Fresh coffee and good things to read are always nice with the cookies you have to taste. ( you know, to make sure they are really good) Blessings: rainy days to bake cookies, baking cookies, granddaughters
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 pound of butter
- 4 eggs ( farm fresh is best )
- 2 tsp. vanilla ( real vanilla)
- 5 cups flour
- dash of salt
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3 cups chocolate chips
- 3 cups walnuts ( because one granddaughter has allergy to peanuts I substituted MORE chocolate chips for nuts)
Cream together well butter and sugars. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix until well blended. Sift together dry ingredients and add to creamed ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. I sometimes add chunks of candy bars to this recipe.
BAKE 325 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
~This is the time of year I evaluate our poultry, place orders for new poultry, and read my poultry literature to keep up on what's going on in the poultry world. I had Miss Frizzle out to photograph her and I also had a stack of poultry literature out to read. I decided to get Miss Frizzles' opinion on my reading choices. Regarding the story book above she said "hmmmm, I could go for a vacation like this little chick, I think I will read more about this Cheepy Chick..." ~"Oh, this looks interesting, Kathy might be reading the article about Fowl Language and how to understand ME! This could be a good thing..."
~" EGGS? Cooking eggs ? Cooking ...EGGS!!!!!!! My babies?.........................................."
Monday, March 16, 2009
~This is one of many little frizzled bantam hens I have. She weighs less than a pound and is at least two years old. Notice the feathers. They are very curly and curl backwards. This little hen is covered from head to tail to feet in shiny blue-black curly feathers. She has several sisters in the bantam pen that resemble her. Isn't she cute?
~Close up of the feathers. "Frizzles are one of our odd breeds, and little is known about their origin." American Poultry Standard of Perfection~~Close up of the wings and wing tips. " It is not unprofessional to give free legal advice, but advertising that the first visit will be free is a bit like the fox telling the chickens he will not bite them until they cross the threshold of the hen house." Warren E. Burger ~Aren't her tail feathers frilly and flaunting? She is so tiny and soft and curly. She lays eggs too! I still don't understand why more people do not have pet chickens. They are so much less bother than cats and dogs and parrots! Plus, they lay eggs you can eat and they are very funny. Chickens can get very attached to people too and are easily contained should it be necessary. They are cheap to buy and keep, what more could a person want? You can even bathe them regularly to keep them smelling fresh.Hey, some people even dress their chickens in cute little outfits......can't you just picture the rich and famous cruising all the best places with a smart little chicken in their big handbags or sports cars?
~"If you want to save a species, simply decide to eat it. Then it will be managed-like chickens, like turkeys, like deer, like Canadian geese." Ted Nugent ~
Blessings: chickens and all their variety and entertaining ways, chicken eggs
Sunday, March 15, 2009
~Hubby and I cornered Goth, and using his horns as handles, walked him to the shed for Dirt to shear him and the rest of the flock that were not sheared in January. And of course, it was cold and rainy today, so there are some pitifully naked sheep huddling together under the heat lamp tonight. In the picture above, Hubby is holding Goth's horn while Dirt starts shearing. ~Dirt is almost done with Goth here, but look at Goth's horns wrapped around Dirt's waist. Dirt made a comment about forgetting his Flak Jacket today...... ~Here is another picture of Goth's horns tucked up against my Hubby. The horns are very pointy and hard and can cause a lot of damage with just a turn of the ram's head. Dirt knows what he is doing though and to my knowledge has not been hurt by any of my Jacob sheep while shearing them.
~Anna , Bet and Lanny came along to visit while we skirted the fleeces . Anna is holding one of the lambs while it's momma is being sheared. Aren't they all 3 cute? ( Anna is the most sensibly dressed for the weather.~
~Oh how the mighty is humbled...and naked! And probably cold tonight.~
~" It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." Andrew J. Holmes
" Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of My pasture!" declares the Lord. Jeremiah 23:1