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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, February 26, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

~ winter on the farm ~
"Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child." 
~ Exodus 22:22 ~

"Life can only be understood backwards,
but it must be lived forwards." 
~ Soren Kierkegaard  
"Give us a chance to show you that those so-called protective laws to aid women - however well intentioned originally - have become in fact restraints, which keep wife, abandoned wife, and widow alike from supporting her family." ~ Martha Griffiths ~

"He who has gone, so we but cherish his memory, 
abides with us, more potent, nay, 
more present than the living man."
~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery ~

"Widow. The word consumes itself.
~ Sylvia Plath ~

"It is better to be the widow of a hero than the wife of a coward." 
~ Dolores Ibarruri

"When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, 
and you shall see that in truth you are weeping 
for that which has been your delight."
~ Khalil Gibran ~

"Happiness is beneficial for the body,
but it is grief that develops the powers of the mind."
~ Marcel Proust ~
“May a man live well-, and long-enough, 
to leave many joyful widows behind him.” 
~ Roman Payne ~  

"Where you used to be, 
there is a hole in the world 
which I find myself walking around 
in the daytime and falling into at night. 
I miss you like hell."
~ Edna St. Vincent Millay, Letters ~

"You can't do anything about the length of your life,
but you can do something about its width and depth."
~ Evan Esar ~
"We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it to the full."
~ Marcel Proust ~
"Music I heard with you was more than music,
and bread that I broke with you was more than bread.
Now that I am without you, all is desolate;
All that was once so beautiful is dead."
~ Conrad Aiken ~

   "We must embrace pain and
 burn it as fuel for our journey"
~ Kenji Miyazawa ~

"It is difficult to become accustomed to the loss of happiness."
~ Francois De La Rochefoucauld~

"While we are mourning the loss of our friend, 
others are rejoicing to meet him behind the veil"
~ John Taylor ~

"Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world" ~ James 1:27 ~

If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Kerrie ~ Ray ~ Ruth Anne ~ Kathy - Sandra ~ Miki ~Adrienne ~ Karena ~ Roland ~ Debbie ~ Beckwith family ~ Lea and family ~ Kary ~ Mildred ~ John ~ Noelle ~ Geoffrey ~ Terry ~ Angela, Penny and family ~ Daniel ~ Morgan ~ Meredith ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~ Wanda ~ Steve ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine ~ Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~ Linda ~ Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ me ~

Monday, February 13, 2012

I'm Baaaacccckkkk....

 ~ S2 and S1 ~
Well, praise God, the computer is working! Being human, I'd love to take credit but all I did was pray, a lot, and pull plugs and push buttons.

This will be a short post because I'm still up to my eyebrows dealing with estate, paperwork, corporations and people who want me to do something PDQ but when it's me asking, I'm reminded of molasses in January. You're as tired of hearing me say it as I am of saying it but...I'm exhausted and I'm only three months into this mess. How do people manage who have children, jobs, etc.? When do they cram in all that's required when someone dies? I'm struggling and feel like I'm always slipping behind and never catching up. As I continue to struggle, the grief slips into the background until it will not be denied and then I'm a week, crawling on hands and knees again, just to survive. And so it goes.

The photo above is of my BFF, Sandra, who lives in Myrtle Beach. We've been friends for more than thirty years and are alike in so many ways. We share the same first name and the same middle initial; she's a tad bit older than I and she's ever so much more clever but we dearly love each other. I wish we could see each other more often but we make good use of the time we have together.  Recently, I had business in MB and stayed with S2; we had such a good time. Dave would call me S1 and the other Sandra, S2 so the nicknames have stuck, at least with the two of us. It's one of our Dave memories that we share and it helps bring healing. The best time, for me at least, was walking on the beach and, to commemorate the day, I asked a passerby to take our photo. The last holiday Dave and I had was at MB and FL; this visit with S2 was bittersweet but also cathartic. The day was perfect: sunny, a trifle warm and an ocean breeze; more good memories in the making; bless God for His healing mercies.
~ birdie, birdie, birdie ~
Did you know, in each state, there's a department to find out if you have "lost property"? True. I've done a search in my MIL's name, Dave's name, my name, Daddy's name...heck, even Dave's first wife's name! and found lost property for all! The paperwork is horrific but it's my money and I want it; in Virginia you look here.

Are you familiar with "bundling"? That's when your -hahaha...your, get it? it's not yours, it's theirs and they do all within their power to take and keep your money...especially if their name begins with V!- I mean, someone has to pay that CEO his $350 MILLION a year; as if he's worth it, ya think? Not!

oh goodness. I think I fell off my bandwagon. 'Scuse, please. Anyway, if the phone company wants you to bundle your telephone, i-net and television...DON'T DO IT! Why? Because, when one of the contracts comes up for renewal, they renew ALL the contracts and keep you in contract hades for the rest of your life; how nasty rude!

Did you see where Whitney Houston passed away? I always felt a kinship with her because her Mom is Gospel singer Cissy Houston -absolutely LOVE Cissy and her amazing voice- and raised Whitney in a Pentecostal Holiness church. We share similar beginnings as my maternal Grandfather was a Pentecostal Holiness preacher. He was a circuit rider preacher and would take me with him to his little country churches, a different one each Sunday. In good times, he'd be paid with a ham at Christmas and during lean times, a dozen eggs. The offering plate never held much money but the garden produce was always lavish in the summer and the love of his congregations always in evidence. You know, it's silly, but when Whitney wasn't doing so well, I cried buckets for that girl and prayed for her as well. Who knows what demons she couldn't shake; what hell grabbed her and wouldn't let go. My heart just breaks for her Mama and family. 

Good news...Queen Elizabeth, age 85, celebrates sixty years on the throne this year; 60 years, can you imagine! She's been Queen since 6 February 1952, longer than I've been alive and in a quote released from Buckingham Palace said, "I hope that we will all be reminded of the power of togetherness and the convening strength of family, friendship and good neighborliness, examples of which I have been fortunate to see throughout my reign." She's such an amazing role model and it always bothers me when people make fun of her; rudeness always offends and, fortunately, when it's on television, I can click the offenders out of hearing and sight. God save, and bless, the Queen!

My short break is over; it's back to paperwork I must go. As Elisabeth Elliott said, "you are loved with an everlasting love and underneath are the everlasting arms."

Blessings ~ love ~ friendship ~ duty ~ service ~ family ~ faith ~

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

"Cast your cares on the Lord
and he will sustain you. ..."
~ Psalms 55:22 ~
 "O LORD, how happy should we be
If we could cast our care on Thee,
If we from self could rest;
And feel at heart that One above,
In perfect wisdom, perfect love,
Is working for the best."
~ J. Anstice

"I would like you to be free from concern."
~ I Corinthians 7:32 ~

"Cast all thy care on God, See that all thy cares be such as thou canst cast on God, and then hold none back. Never brook over thyself; never stop short in thyself; but cast thy whole self, even this very care which distresseth thee, upon God. Be not anxious about little things, if thou woudst learn to trust God with thine all. Act upon faith in little things; commit thy daily cares and anxieties to Him; and He will strengthen thy faith for any greater trails. Rather, give thy whole self into God's hands and so trust Him to take care of thee in all lesser things, as being His, for His own sake, whose thou art." ~ E. B. Pusey ~

"I predict future happiness for Americans
if they can prevent the government from
wasting the labors of the people under the 
pretense of taking care of them." 
~ Thomas Jefferson ~

"I care not much for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not the better for it." ~ Abraham Lincoln ~

"Grief can take care if itself,
but to get the full value of a joy
you must have somebody to divide it with."
~ Mark Twain ~

"The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only object of good government." 
~ Thomas Jefferson ~

"Love begins by taking care
of the closest ones 
- the ones at home.~ Mother Teresa ~

"Casting all your care upon Him
for He careth for you."
~ 1 Peter 5:7 ~

If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Kathy - Sandra ~ Miki ~Adrienne ~ Karena ~ Roland ~ Debbie ~ Beckwith family ~ Lea and family ~ Kary ~ Mildred ~ John ~ Noelle ~ Geoffrey ~ Terry ~ Angela, Penny and family ~ Daniel ~ Morgan ~ Meredith ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~ Wanda ~ Steve ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine ~ Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~ Linda ~ Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ me ~

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Gift Package, Good Stuff, Fun Stuff

Is anyone else having a wee bit of trouble with Blogger? Every time I want to load a photo I get a Security Message saying "Information from this secure page will be submitted to a page that is not secure on Submitting sensitive information is strongly discouraged."

So, I'm sufficiently frightened enough not to have photos on this post! Does anyone know what's going on or what I should do?

Bless you for asking...and you know who "you" are -smile-...I am physically well but overwhelmed with the learning curve presented to me upon Dave's death. There are so many areas I have to cover and a lot of those areas are brand new to me...such as finances. I am reading as much as possible about investing, speaking to a lot of people and trying to familiarize myself with the possibilities. I would at least like to ask intelligent questions of the professionals I approach and, additionally, would like to know when they might be leading me down a path that's more advantageous to them than to I. Tending to all the paperwork is a forty-hour a week job and then there's the farm work, tending to the animals, etc. I don't mean to complain, just want you to know why I'm seldom seen. Even so, when I think of you, you're tucked into prayer!

The Thankful Follower's gift package will be sent to Quinn, number thirty-three; she responded within the twenty-four hour limit.

Some things, perhaps, of interest to you...

Kate Smith singing God Bless America. Irvin Berlin had written it two decades earlier but had never recorded it. It's a fabulous story and if you've never heard Kate Smith, you're in for a treat. She had a fabulous voice and personality!

The Candy Man; if you're in favor of Big Government there's a good chance you won't find this funny. I was rolling on the floor, laughing myself silly but that was before I realized just how true the whole song is and that sobered me up...quick plenty!

Dog, Cat, Rat. My SIL always thought it strange that the six dogs and three cats got along so well in our household. Dave and I always thought it strange she thought it strange. If the animals don't get along together...guess who is at fault!

Harmonica in Carnegie Hall - fabulous! 

"April 15 - filed my taxes and sent them in....

They sent my Tax Return back..........In response to the question:
"List all dependents?" I replied -

~12 million illegal immigrants;
~3 million crack heads;
~42 million "unemployable" people on food stamps,
~2 million people in over 243 prisons;
~Half of Mexico and
~535 fools in the U.S. House and Senate.”
 Apparently, this was NOT an acceptable answer but I believe it's correct."

Blessings ~ laughter ~ animals ~ followers ~ music ~ song ~ Kate Smith ~ learning curves ~

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Rural Thursday Blog Hop #1

~ my garage, built to order ~
oops...forgot to say, if you're looking for the Thankful Follower give-away post, look here; you have four more days to comment.

Nancy, Rural Journal, and Lisa, Two Bears Farm, are hosting a blog hop today and invited me to join them. We're supposed to blog about rural living, recipes, homesteading tips, animals, photography... essentially anything having to do with country living. As I'm writing my post, I make number 30 and cow's tail. What can I say? It's been one of Those Days. This morning I had to go to town for yet more meetings with my Wonderful Lawyer...and I mean that sincerely, I do luv my lawyer!...meetings with other folks with whom Dave did business, library to make copies, post office to mail all those pieces of correspondence and topped off by going to WallyWorld to get an oil change. Yeah, yeah, if you don't like big box stores, do us both a favor and keep it to yourself. When I've got a time crunch, there's nothing like being able to grocery shop, pick up 'scripts and then rest my rear while my car is being serviced. When I'm not in a time crunch and when the weather is mild enough for me to sit outside, I go to our local small business auto shop. Unfortunately, those folks smoke and I'm allergic to cig smoke so big box store it is a lot of times. 

Anyhooooo...I got home in very late afternoon and thought I'd blog about my garage being delivered. Dave and I never had a garage though we have plenty of barns, buildings, sheds and the like but never a garage. A garage would have been So Handy while Dave was sick. I shudder remembering the times when it was blowing sleet, snow, ice and rain and I had to get him, his oxygen gear and his previous frail self out of the house and into the car and then to the doctor or hospital. Of course, all of that was after I started the car so it could heat up enough so I could get the windows scrapped and then move it to the back porch to load Dave, etc. Mercy!
~ brilliant truck driver! ~
Daniel and I were talking one evening about garages and I told him I'd seen a shed that looked like someone was using it as a garage. He told me about a company "down on the 4-lane", as they call Rt. 460 around here, and I went to investigate. Yes, they did sell ready made and made to order buildings and they did deliver and set up. So, I ordered a 20x24 building with a roll up garage door, two three foot x three foot windows and a metal door with nine windows. It also has an eight foot loft inside for extra storage. 
~ putting into place ~
The driver delivered and set the building level and all within a couple of hours; amazing! He told me to let it set for about two weeks so it could settle. We've had a lot of rain and the ground is really spongy so sitting for a while is a good thing. In time, I'll have a wooden drive ramp built so I can drive right into the garage. 

Okay, you folks who have garages may not understand my total excitement but this provides shelter for my car as well as security for me. Daniel is going to put up a couple of motion detector solar lights at the front and rear and, in the spring, he's making plans to have a trench dug so I can put electricity in the garage. My nephew is a licensed electrician so it will, naturally, be to code. 
~ way bye-bye to the nice delivery man ~
Come to find out, there are a lot of folks who are in this type business and a lot of them are Mennonite or Amish. Construction varies but my building has six by six skids while other companies only have four by four skids...Very Important. My floor will hold 10,000 pounds so everything from my car to my truck will not only fit but be held securely. I paid a bit extra for more blocks to be set under my building; so none of the skids are touching the ground and even though all the lumber is treated, I still opted to pay the extra money for the extra blocks. The metal roof is screwed on, not nailed on...again, Very Important with all the crazy wind we have in this valley and all doors and windows lock. There's more good stuff but they aren't paying me to say anything so I'll shush.

If you're interested in who made my garage, it's the Mennonites of Old Hickory Buildings out of Statesville, NC and, thus far, I couldn't be happier! This post might not be perxactly what Nancy and Lisa had in mind but, trust me, it's making my rural life a lot better, a lot safer and a lot more secure. Good things, all! 

Blessings ~ made to order garage ~ Mennonites ~ Nancy ~ Lisa ~ 

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