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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Sunday, July 30, 2006


Good Sabbath one and all...

It's a beautiful day here at Thistle Cove Farm --- the sheep and horses all graze peacefully on the hillsides; the kitten is playing with his toy, the dogs are taking naps and the older cats are snoozing or keeping watch.

A kitten would think, with as many livestock as I've helped castrate, I would know a male from a female. And I do, except when I'm in a hurry it's terribly easy to make mistakes, some of which are drastic and others just funny. This is a funny mistake - the kitten, Rascal, isn't a girl. Rascal is a boy...all boy. We took him to the vets to have his first shots and an examination. The vet flipped Rascal on his back and proclaimed, "a nice boy you've got here." My eyes widened and I took another look, this time not a quick peek but a slow look. Yep, Rascal is still a cutie and he's a boy.

At any rate, some mistakes are funny, some are drastic but they all provide fodder for the mill stone. The men are here delivering more hemlock lumber and the barns are looking great! It's nice to watch pros at work and know these old barns will still be here when I'm long gone.

I'm out of pocket for a while and it's unknown if I'll have computer or internet access. If I do, your Fiber Femme Foreign Correspondent (thanks Leslie!) will send a note from here and there to yon.

At any rate, be safe and live with God's blessing.

Friday, July 28, 2006

VA Highlands Fest

This weekend is the 58th Virginia Highlands Festival in Abingdon, VA. The first festival was held in 1948 on the "Marthas' " (Martha Washington Inn) front porch in conjunction with the Barter Theatre (State Theatre of VA) founding. Robert Porterfield wanted to celebrate the cultural heritage of Abingdon while preserving at the same time. The Highlands Festival has grown into a regional festival and is touted as one of the top 100 festivals in the USA. Throughout the year, more than 100 volunteers beaver away making this Festival one of the finest in the country.

The Fiber Arts & Quilt Show is one weekend only on July 29-30 and Leslie Shelor and I will be in the Grand Hall at the Virginia Higher Education Center.

This is a fabulous festival, run by dedicated volunteers, and is always a great time; come on out and visit us at the Higher Ed Center and then go to downtown Abingdon to see the rest of the festival. You'll be glad you did!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006


The unicorn is the symbol for lost and wayward animals. It's said anywhere a unicorn is, other animals know that place to be one of Sanctuary, Peace and Rest.

There has to be a Unicorn residing somewhere on Thistle Cove Farm! While it's true human eyes have yet to see this Unicorn, nevertheless, it's here. Just ask any of the many lost and wayward animals who have made their way here and are now happily ensconced members of the family. Like this kitten whose name we believe to be Rascal. She came strolling up the walkway one dusky evening last week just about the time the household was being put to bed. Dave was the first human she saw and that had to have been planned by either Rascal or the Unicorn. Dave is the one who has final say in whether an animal stays or goes; he's the one feeding us all so he gets the majority vote.

I didn't actually see her until 4:00 a.m. when the dogs decided a bathroom break was in order. I let the dogs out, saw a silhouette and went on the porch to investigate. She got up, stretched and began purring as soon as my hand touched her nose.

Amazing! I've been owned by cats for more than four decades and this is only the second cat I've known to walk in from the elements, claim her home and her humans and put down stakes. The first cat was Rings, an old friend who lived with me for more than twenty-one years. Rings had a sweet nature and, willingly and lovingly, traveled with me, state to state, good times and bad and never once complained. She was always grateful to have food, shelter and companionship and I was grateful to her for her gift of love.

Perhaps Rascal will be a similar companion although I'm hopeful our roots go deep enough not to be transplanted from the farm. I've been asked if I'm a dog or a cat person. That's like asking which child do you love best. Love isn't love when it's divided; only when it's multiplied is it truly love and makes all parties whole and complete.

The horses are staying cool by staying in the barn during the heat of the day and going out early mornings and late afternoons. They are a beautiful sight as they race across the pasture.

More chores to be done, calls to be made and I want to get a dye pot going before dark. Work is never finished but we find a stopping point and then call it quits for the day.

Carpe Diem - pluck the day and make it yours.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Happy Sabbath...

Psalms 50:10 - "For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills."

Matthew 7:16 - "Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?"

Luke 12:27 - "Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."

Proverbs 15:17 - "Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and hatred therewith."

Psalms 121:1, 2 "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth."

Genesis 1:11 "And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth."

Job 14: 1, 2 "Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble. He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not."

Song of Solomon 1:2 "I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys."

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy July 4th, USA

On June 28, 1787, the Constitutional Convention was on the verge of complete rupture. For over a month the delegates wrestled with the issue of representation with no breakthroughs, and now patience was wearing thin, emotions were on edge.

A somber George Washington, presiding over this assembly, began to despair of seeing success in the Convention. But the oldest delegate in attendance, Dr. Benjamin Franklin, asked for permission to speak.
This was unusual. The 81-year-old Pennsylvanian up to this point wrote out his remarks and had some one else read them due to his infirmity. But this time he was stirred to rise and address the delegates himself:

"The small progress we have made after four or five weeks... with each other... is a melancholy proof of the imperfection of the human understanding... In this situation for this Assembly, groping as it were in the dark to find political truth, and scarce able to distinguish it when presented to us, how has it happened, Sir, that we have not hitherto once thought of humbly applying to the Father of lights to illuminate our understanding?

"In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard and they were graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our favor... Have we now forgotten this powerful Friend? Or do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?
"I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth: that God governs in the affairs of man. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire could rise without His aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the Sacred Writings that "except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it (Psalm 127:1)." I firmly believe this, and I also believe that without His concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel. We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages.

"I therefore beg leave to move that, henceforth, prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven and its blessing on our deliberation be held in this assembly every morning...and that one or more of the clergy of this city be requested to officiate in that service."

This speech marked the turning point of the Convention.
Within a year the Constitution was ratified by eleven states to establish the first Christian form of government in history.

Ref: America's Providential History, pages 171-173.
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