Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Quiet Time For That Anxious Feeling

Even until very recently I had the custom of diving into the daily housework and routine of the house, and even bigger jobs, as soon as the day began. Now, I have been going "out" for morning tea and trying to break into the day more slowly and gracefully.

It does make the tasks begin later and end later in the day, but nothing can replace those fleeting morning moments. The birds aren't even awake yet but the chirps begin one at a time until others join in and the trees sing in a full orchestra.  It is so interesting how they never sing the same tune but nothing sounds discordant.

This morning I have a mismatched cup and saucer that go together just right.

I wanted to share this nice picnic basket I got on sale at Hobby Lobby for half price. I am so glad I waited for the price to be reduced.  I like it a lot better than the wicker ones, because it isn't so heavy and the wood fibers won't catch on anything. I have not tested how it will carry weightier things but the handles seem strong enough.

It comes in lime green also, and another color...maybe blue.
Some of my friends and I have been discussing feeling of being anxious to get home during times when we have had to be out and about.  Sometimes we were not sure it was normal to feel this way.
Are we having a panic attack or is it really something to do with having to be home; to feel anchored, stable and reassured.  I am sure some people mistake this for "separation anxiety" and if it is, there isn't a thing wrong with it!
A feeling to flee home is probably a signal to your mind that you need to go back to your nest.  I get that feeling sometimes when I have to be gone a lot for necessary errands, or if I am delayed in getting home.  There were a few times when I got a feeling I needed to go home immediately. In the past I wish I had gone with this instinct, because I now know you can never recover the time that passed by.

The feeling of longing for home is something God put in us as women, who create these nice places with good memories for our families.  Sometimes we think there is something better going on "out there" but really, what is important to a woman personally and have lasting value, will be the love and care she put into her home life.  That could be why we have such a strong desire to be home.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

A Wild Morning Tea

Hello everyone,

We are so grateful for your visits, your kind emails and any donations, which are so personally motivating.

The foliage is wild and untamed around here and we need to do a lot of trimming and edging and mowing! I was outside in the morning having a look at all that needs to be done.

I still want to create a sheet tent and also put some kind of outdoor living thing in he bed of the truck, as well as other outdoor rest areas, eating areas and recreation areas around the place.  We have a back patio, a shed, shady tree areas and many other places that could be created as places of interest with a few simple props as well as some water on the dry patches.
In one week we are expecting a couple our age,  from Tennessee!  I am outside today trying to see what parts of the property need some trimming and I am experimenting to see where we might enjoy a wee spot of morning tea with the best view!
This arbor bench is covered in grapevines and also has rusted so I am not sure we will sit here but I wanted to stage it and see how appealing or comfortable it would be.

On Thursday there was such a small group in ladies class ( busy summer harvest activities and all) that I asked my husband to join us and teach the lesson. He chose Romans 12 because he said that would be one chapter a Christian would need for navigation through the trials of life.

 It is very busy around here today getting ready for the Tennessee couple, so I won't post the chapter, but I expect some of you will comment on the contents of that chapter or post verses of Romans 12. I call it the citizenship chapter because that is the way the citizens of the kingdom of Christ will want to conduct themselves with members of the Lords church, members of their own families, and others.

The principles of Romans 12 also help a great deal when trying to live among the citizens of that "other" kingdom where people are not so respectful or peaceful.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A Good Response to Disturbing Politics


One of the things that relaxes me the most is creating a pleasant scene outdoors. I should try it every day because it isn't work and there is no deadline, no routine.  It is a peaceful time of re-creation. 

The flower bed and lawn are looking wild and a few dried leaves have fallen, but everything is very lush and green.

Today I am writing to the younger women, especially those with children at home.  Character qualities are more important than politics. Enjoy your children and don't let those years slip by worrying about the news that, 20 years ahead, will be obsolete.  

Make your own news at home and help your children to admire the scriptures. Learn the meanings and applications of words of the Bible, study a little Greek and other languages to see the overall meaning and give some depth to it; learn to reason together, to defend your faith peacefully, and don't get involved with the news.

  If you ever learn the history of the news media, you will understand why it is fruitless and even harmful to pay more attention to it than to your own children and your home.  You might be able to find something about the history of newspapers and go from there to find the tactics of the media and their "word-salads".  

Please don't let bad news stop you from living your life.  Much of it is designed to keep you in a constant state of unrest, fidgeting, worry, stress, uncertainty.

We aren't supposed to live like that, focused on other people all the time, outside our own homes.

One day you might turn 60 and realize you have spent your whole life worried about the world. You might realise your husband or children never knew you when you were not tense and upset, and that you can't remember when you were really happy.

There isn't any substitute for one of the ways God said to help the world:

I exhort, then, first of all, there be made supplications, prayers, intercessions, thanksgivings, for all men:

for kings, and all who are in authority, that a quiet and peaceable life we may lead in all piety and gravity,

for this is right and acceptable before God our Saviour,

who doth will all men to be saved, and to come to the full knowledge of the truth..."

-1st Timothy 2:1-4

Once you have done this, you can't be like the man back in the day of the horse and cart, who was walking on the road carrying a heavy burden on his back.  The driver of a horse and cart came upon him and offered a ride.  The man gladly sat in the back of the cart, still bearing the load on his shoulders.  The driver told his passenger: "You can set your buden down now! You don't have to carry it anymore."

If you are going to pray, be sure and let go of your burden.

I hope this helps.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Raindrop Tea

Since it has not rained here in 3 months I thought I had plenty of time to set up the outdoor tea table. The rain filled up the tea cups, but I was able to get some pictures.

I was thinking about all the political and religious controversy around us, as well as the upsetting things people do and say. It is not always possible to refute all the false doctrine or false accusations that come our way. We ladies know how distracting it can be. I find it hard to focus on beauty and other interests, if I am mentally fighting a war all the time and you might feel the same way.  

I found this verse you see here and I love it because it is a quiet, non-combative way of refuting all the things people challenge us with. It is good we can live our lives out quietly and sincerely without causing our hearts to constantly race!

James 3:13  Who is wise and understanding among you? let him show by his good life his works in meekness of wisdom.

Ladies there is nothing in the Bible that tells us to take on the world's worries. It more often instructs the opposite!

Once you get addicted to all the stress it is hard to let it go!

I like this verse so much. It gives us permission to be content with living a good life. We do t have to do "great" things or "accomplish" but just practice goodness at home.

This principle could lead to a very lengthy conversation discussing the importance of your own private life and the unknown impact it has on life around you!

I hope even if you can't really sit outside for tea that you will set up a tea table just for the peaceful scene it provides.  It is like playing house.  I remember how many happy childhood hours I spent playing house and how settling and soothing it was.

It is so nice to play house and I hope you will try it by puttering around the way children do.

More later about this.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Serious Moments

(Picture from Pinterest)

Something I enjoy when tea time comes around, is the sweet seriousness of the moment.  We are often told how important it is to be "fun loving" but being witty and flippant and silly can get wearisome, as well as make us feel removed from our spiritual stability and responsibility to be sober and righteous in this world.

 Sometimes in order to please others around us, (who are uncomfortable with seriousness and solemnity) we ladies forget there is nothing wrong with being sensible, as we take in the beauties of the earth and think about the One who created us.  Enjoy life, but remember to keep the conversation between you and the Lord, who enables your life.

I think it is important to spend moments in the Truth, and seek directions through Gods Word and prayer.  When we pray, we speak to God, and when we read His Word, He speaks to us.

Recently I have been thinking about the meaning of "sound" doctrine, contained in the following verse. Soundness is a word we used a lot in the past and should be a priority in life. I also like that phrase "zealous of good works" and am thinking what a challenge it must be for people who cannot go anywhere or do much, due to health problems. Yet we still have the mail and email and our homes in which to serve our families.

Titus 2 is a familiar theme for ladies at home, but have you read further in the chapter to see some more gems like this?

For the grace of God hath appeared, bringing salvation to all men,

 instructing us, to the intent that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly and righteously and godly in this present world;

looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a people for his own possession, zealous of good works.  (Titus 2:11-14)

I like that word "sober" which means seriously thinking about life. We want to do the best we can and not take life for granted. Appreciate every moment. It is a gift from God.  Soberness is not just the opposite of silliness, it should also cause us to refine our temperaments and be careful of our responses to others, knowing we are creating memories. Exchange a sudden cruel remark for a kind one. If you practice it a lot, you will do it automatically and overcome a bad habit. Just substitute a yes for a no, as we used to say. Every time you have a blow-up you feel bad, but if you want to feel good, respond in a good way. 

Someone recently sent me an Emily Barnes/Susan Rios tea time book, which emphasizes tea time as quiet reflections on what is lovely, true and good. (Thanks Andrea in Idaho, for sending this! I shall try to write a proper note when the summer harvest Rush is over!)

Today I hope to lay out my own outdoor tea scene and get a picture for you all.

Thank you so much for your comments, your love and even your corrections. You ladies are so smart, and I'm impressed some of you can tell what model and year and name of an old worn out truck is just by the tail lights!

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Taking Tea Time Seriously

Hello Ladies,

I came across a photograph of a man who had a roadside hot tea service, but it was copyrighted. If you want to go and look, it was titled, "Tea seller waiting for tourists in Yorkshire Dales, England."

The photo revealed such a simple operation I wonder why more people are not doing that on roadsides here. The appeal would be even stronger if the location was scenic and the area was clean. An enterprising person, couple or a family could move their business along the highway and never be bored in one place.  A "chain" of sorts could be established along a picturesque route with many vendors. Tourists could bring their own porcelain tea cups.

In the meantime I am packing my own hot water, supply of tea bags and cups.  I need to get better at this--neater and more efficient.

Monday, August 07, 2017

Friday, August 04, 2017

Light House View

We have farm haze here, with over 100 degree temps, so have gone to the Pacific Ocean.  The above photo is a view from the light house.

Our young visitor from Germany is adapting very well. I am afraid when we introduce him as being from Germany he will embarrass us by saying Howdy Ma'am. He has become so American. His parents won't recognize him.
Alexander is so relaxed and enjoying his vacation. 
What do you think?  

My children and grandchildren built a castle, and that will likely be the only one he will see unless we take him to Mary Hill castle.
Since Germany is full of castles I didn't want him to think we were uncivilized. Our castles are very well built.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

News From Mark

Susan Kisdinger's husband, Mark, wrote to tell us his wiifm passed away yesterday. He wanted the ladies to know he appreciates all their thoughtfulness in sending cards and letter.

"And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed arethe dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them."  Revelation 14:13

Thursday, July 27, 2017

European Guest Gets Country Clothes

Our visitor from Germany arrived late yesterday (above) at the local airport.

In the  photo below  he poses in front of one of our grand institutions on his first  excursion in the "New World." He is really curious about this place and we were not sure what would come of it. 

I forgot to take a picture of the shopping basket he loaded with new threads. He was a little hesitant about the plain styles but the prices eventually changed his mind:

Denim jeans, $9.00. We should have raided that section and bought them all. For that price I was wishing I knew more people who needed them!
A blue check shirt was $3.00. I think we should go back and get some more. 100/% cotton. 
Cool summer hat, below, $9.00.
A good use for the old Ford truck: a background prop for the "after" pictures.  You can't see it but he is chewing on a stick of hay. It didn't show up in the picture due to the bright sunlight. His mother said he looked very American.  He isn't sure this look will have much success for him in Germany but these clothes are very functional and conducive to the climate here (the temperature is rising).

Alexander says the clothes are comfortable out here in the sticks.

What do you think, ladies? Did we make a country boy out of him?  

The clothes aren't very slick looking, or stylish as he is accustomed to, but I think they will last a few years and eventually he will come to love them.  As you know, men marry their clothes (til death do they part) and I suspect he will not eagerly part with these. I will get pictures of the other clothing bargains he got, when he wears them. 

Stan is preparing  to take Alexander on a few excursions while he is here. I will be posting more pictures about that on this post. 

July 31: we put him to work and he wasn't unhappy about it. He sent some pictures to his parents of this scene:

Foreign worker stealing our jobs 😊

Sweeping the old CHEVY. (Thanks, ladies. The markings on the old truck are all faded out or gone. Thanks for correcting me. Yes,miss a Chevrolet.

Talking to his Mother in Germany.

Working all Night Long

The haying went on all night long, noise, lights, and all.  The workers didn't leave many of the straw city high-rises or castles for us to view today and the only picture I can show is this one pitiful little stack!

At night it is cooler and the dust is subdued by the dew, hence harvesting by moonlight, so we didn't get to see a daytime show.

 Last year I got to watch some very young people work these new  farm machines. There were lots of teen boys with their fathers, and what a marvellous job they did.

 I wish I could describe how one young man, maybe 18 years old (if even that old) baled, loaded and belted the hay blocks onto a long truck bed, tooted his horn at our family like a "show is over" tune, and carefully eased off the farm road onto the highway.

What a life for young men in their formative years--to be out ALL NIGHT with their parents blessings, working in a machine with conveniences on board--cellphones, music, air conditioning or heat, lights, packed lunches, thermoses full of sweet tea, and lots of commeraderie. 

It seems like it's easier on the women who get to stay home and sleep through the night, but it isn't exactly true.  The noise of all those trucks and tractors interrupt a good nights sleep.

Our cottage:

We have a visitor from Germany, a young man, young enough to be a grandson. We are going to persuade him to wear jeans, plaid shirt, cowboy hat and boots during his visit, so he won't be identified as a city slicker and looked down on 😉, and also so he can return to Germany looking like a country boy.  

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Harvest Show

I got so caught up in watching the latest farm equipment clear a field and make hay, that this is the only photo I got, after it was all done.  The way they made haystacks look like city buildings was interesting, and from afar, they looked like castles.

This is my vinyl wicker, which I quite like, because it can be left outside and even get caught in the water sprinkler with no damage.  

All is well here.

Sunday, July 23, 2017


(Photo by UK tea room from Pinterest)

The scone recipe I have had the most success with is from the Anne of Green Gables Cookbook, and you can see the recipe here:

I use only the most natural organic ingredients including the unbleached flour, pink salt or real-salt,
and I use the lightest tasting olive oil. Organic cream can be substituted for the oil and milk. The recipe works well for non dairy and you can use water instead of milk.  It is adaptable to adding sultanas, walnuts, dried cranberries, dried apricot bits and many other things.

I make this recipe into a scone recipe and do not cut out and assemble them the way it is shown in the recipe.  I simply make the biscuits like any ordinary biscuit and put the cold jam and cream on the tea table to be used according to personal preference.

The way the biscuits are assembled and cooked in the original recipe is a lot of trouble and the baked jam is not as good as fresh jams and cream, but every cook has to find out what works best and what they prefer.

It has been suggested that I make a video about these scones, and I shall certainly think about it seriously. Meanwhile, there are good techniques you can find on YouTube videos about making scones. 

I wanted to mention that in the US and Canada, home cooks do not generally use self-rising flour. Because we use flour for so many different things that require no baking powder, we find it more convenient to use all purpose flour, and many of us are using the unbromated, unbleached lighter flour--not brown flour.  Also with self-rising flour comes ingredients from the baking powder that you may not want, including aluminum.

As for leavening or baking powder, we prefer not to have the aluminum so we buy the non-aluminum baking powder. I make my own using arrowroot, cream of tarter and baking soda. You can find a recipe for homemade, natural baking powder on the web. The natural baking powder reduces the tin taste that often occurs in baking powder biscuits.  Be sure to read the label on your baking powder can. 

Tea and scones is something that can be done in your own yard in summer or in your warm cozy kitchen in colder weather.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Letter From Mark

For those who have been sending cards and letters to Susan Kissinger in hospice:

"Hi, my name is Mark, Susan's husband.I have been taking care of Susan for a few months.  Susan has terminal cancer.  On behalf of Susan, I want to thank everyone for your kind thoughts and cards.  I share each one with Susan."

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

A Sale

(This is a Pinterest picture from a British tea room)

Hello Ladies,

It's tea time here, and I have been up early hanging out laundry so I'm ready for cream scones and raspberry tea.  By the way, organic ingredients make much better, if not perfect scones. Your body is worth the extra care and cost of the best ingredients.

When the (waterproof) wicker settees with metal frames appeared in Walmart earlier this year, they were $50 each.  Today they were $19.00 and just two remaining, so I hastened to make a purchase.

I asked for help loading it in my car, and two young employees obliged. I asked them if they would stay by my car while I returned inside the store to get some chords to secure the trunk.

The men assured me the furniture would be safe without having guards, because, "Ma'am, I don't think anyone really wants it bad enough to go to the trouble of getting  it out of the car."

The other man said: "Besides, Ma'am,  anyone who steals it would have to lug it around, and you could spot the person a mile away carrying a stolen wicker settee."

They say "Ma'am" and "Sir" around here a lot, and especially at our Walmarts.

Not being accustomed to carrying large items that have to be tied down, it took me three trips back into the store to finally get the right sized chords:

The 24-inch length anchored the trunk lid well enough. It never moved at all the entire drive home, so I guess I figured out a new skill. We now have a new supply of bungee chords in the trunk. Every size.

While driving home, I laughed out loud at the Walmart employees and their description of someone awkwardly fleeing with the furniture after trying to get it out of the trunk. It was firmly wedged in there and never made a rattle all the way home.

It's always so satisfying to make a dollar stretch and still have something that looks rich, on the lawn. Besides all that I got a free story...although it is kind of what we call a "groaner."  By the way, there were several of the brown settees left, for the low price. 

Although these are all-weather outdoor things, they actually will crack if left in direct ice, snow, and heavy rain.  It is best to have covers for them if left outside in winter. Last year I brought my waterproof table and chairs in the house and used them.  

I always like taking pictures of the view from both sides of the window.


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