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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, September 30, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

"Here I am, I have come to do your will."
"I couldn't live in peace 
if I put the shadow of a wilful sin 
between myself and God."
"Let us make our way together, Lord;
wherever you go
I must go;
and through whatever you pass,
there too I will pass."
"You are seeking your own will, my daughter. You are seeking some good other than the law you are bound to obey. But how will you find good? It is not a thing of choice; it is a river that flows from the foot of the Invisible Throne, and flows by the path of obedience. I say again, man cannot choose his duties. You may choose to forsake your duties, and choose not to have the sorrow they bring. But you will go forth, and what will you find, my daughter? Sorrow without duty--bitter herbs, and no bread with them."
"There is no chance, no destiny, no fate,
Can circumvent or hinder or control
The firm resolve of a determined soul.
Gifts count for nothing, will alone is great;
Each wellborn soul must win what it deserves.
Let the fool prate of luck. The fortunate
Is he whose earnest purpose never swerves,
Whose slightest action or inaction serves
The one great aim. Why, even Death stands still,
And waits an hour sometimes for such a will."
"To get alone--to dare to be alone--with God, this, I am persuaded, is one of the best ways of doing anything in the world. ... If we are ever to be or to do anything, if we are ever to be full of deep, permanent, rational enthusiasm, we must know God. If we are ever to know each other, we must know Him first. ... I believe that we do most for those whom God has begun to teach us to love, not by constantly thinking of their goodness, their grace, their simplicity, but by never thinking of them apart from God, by always connecting their beauty and purity with a higher Beauty and a higher Purity, by seeing God in them. Let us learn to make every thought of admiration and love a kind of prayer of intercession and thanksgiving. Thus human love will correct itself with, and find it root in divine love. But this we can do only if we are willing to be along with Him."
~ Forbes Robinson
"Doing the will of God 
leaves me no time 
for disputing about His plans."
"The will of God is not something you add to your life. It's a course you choose. You either line yourself up with the Son of God...or you capitulate to the principle which governs the rest of the world." ~ Elisabeth Elliott
"We're not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be." ~ C. S. Lewis ~
"It was too perfect to last,' so I am tempted to say of our marriage. But it can be meant in two ways. It may be grimly pessimistic - as if God no sooner saw two of His creatures happy than He stopped it ('None of that here!'). As if He were like the Hostess at the sherry-party who separates two guests the moment they show signs of having got into a real conversation. But it could also mean "This had reached its proper perfection. This had become what it was meant to be . Therefore of course it would not be prolonged.' As if God said, 'Good; you have mastered that exercise. I am very pleased with it. And now you are ready to go on to the next." ~ C. S. Lewis
"And you shall seek me and find me, 
when you search for me with all your heart."
If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know. Names will be kept for one month, unless notified otherwise. Around the world, people are praying.

Prayer Keeping ~ Maxine ~ Lizzy ~ Pamela ~ Sandy ~ Katie ~ Raeann ~ Geoffrey and Terry ~ Misha and J ~ Jane and Lance ~ Stephanie and family ~ Steve and Gwen ~ Quesenberry family ~ Jill ~ Renee ~ Yvonne ~ Debbie ~ Jessica and Erik ~ Maryann and family ~ Wayne ~ Greg ~ me ~

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Ponzi Scheme of Ginormous Proportions!

If you receive a Social Security Check, have you noticed the name has changed? Yep, it's now a "Federal Benefit Payment". Snopes says it's true; so does Daily Paul and Accuracy in Media.
The government is calling our money, the money WE CONTRIBUTED, AND OUR EMPLOYERS CONTRIBUTED, "Federal Benefit Payment".
NOT!
Our contribution to Social Security totals 15% of our income before taxes. If you averaged $30,000 per year over your working life, that's close to $180,000 invested in Social Security!
If you calculate the future value of your monthly investment in social security $375/month, including both your and your employers contributions) at a meager 1% interest rate compounded monthly, after 40 years of working you'd have more than $1.3 million saved! This is your personal investment!
When you retired, if you took out only 3% per year, you'd receive $39,318 per year or $3.277 per month!
That's almost three times more than today's average Security Security benefit of $1,230 per month, according to the Social Security Administration! Also, your retirement fund would last more than 33 years...until you're 98 if you retire at age 65! So, do you think you could live on $3,277 a month?
Yeah, but...those pesky Inside the Beltway DC folks have pulled off a Ponzi scheme that makes Bernie Madoff bow in admiration. Our "Representatives" took OUR money and used it...someplace else! They TOOK OUR MONEY and no, I didn't get a phone call asking permission, much less a referendum.
Did you?  No, I didn't think so.
No interest paid on the debt "they" assumed either. Well, really it's us who has the debt but why split hairs, eh? By the way, how long ago was it, "our" Inside the Beltway Representatives told us they money won't support us for much longer. Folks, Social Security is broke; dead broke.
So, I'm not feeling warm and fuzzy; how about you? No? How about another head slap?
Social Security Benefits are now being called...wait for it...tadaa!
FEDERAL BENEFIT PAYMENT!
Well, as Flo used to say...KISS MY GRITS! We, the Tax Slaves of America, have worked dang hard for our money and so we could "contribute" to Social Security. Oh yeah, our 7.5% was called a "contribution" and our employers 7.5% was also called a contribution. Did you have a choice whether to pay it or not? No, I thought not; me neither.
"Our" legislators are calling our contribution a benefit and ignoring the fact we worked to earn every penny. Just because they borrowed our money, without permission I might add, doesn't mean Social Security is a charity. It is NOT a "federal benefit"; it's OUR MONEY, WE EARNED IT and "our" representatives need to either REPRESENT US or give up the job! 
If you're happy with having your contribution to Social Security now being labeled a "Federal Benefit Payment", keep voting for the folks now in office. If you're unhappy, vote them OUT of office. That's what I'm going to do...whoever is in office now, I'm voting them all out in November.
Feel free to share this Ponzi Scheme on your blog, etc.

Blessings ~ a chance to vote the bums out in November ~ 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fearless Lily

~ Lily meets Sada's nose ~
Around Thistle Cove Farm, it pays to have a brave heart. Lily, you may remember, was a barn kitten, saved from being a warm meal of the two barn owls. She's been in the house for almost three weeks...hard to believe!...and spent the first week being fed with an eyedropper. Every couple of hours, I'd mix kitten milk with water and feed Lily, then, I'd stick her down my shirt or nightgown, so she could have a little nap. At night, I still heat a rice filled bag and slip it under her cushion so she sleeps warmly.
~ Lily and Sam ~
I don't leave Lily alone with the dogs as the dogs aren't to be trusted...yet. Lily needs to be a bit larger before the dogs will accept her and not hurt her. Even so, I don't think there's anything braver than a kitten. Lily is about seven or eight inches, stretched from back paws to front paws, and will jump half again her height to grab hold of the sheet covering the sofa. Then, she'll drag herself up, up, up until she's on the sofa so she can be-devil the dogs.
~ Sophie isn't all that impressed ~
Lily is now being fed with a kitten baby bottle and sucks like a Dyson. Sophie would cheerfully and with great gusto kill Lily so those two, especially, aren't being left alone.
Each morning, Lily is retrieved from "her" dog crate and taken to the sun room so she can drink from her first bottle. Then, she's placed on the floor where she romps with Tippy for an hour or two, fed again then placed back in the dog crate for a nap.
Lily has progressed to the point where she's grooming herself but sometimes still needs a little help going to the bathroom. When a kitten leaves her mother while the kitten is very young, the kitten needs to be fed, then flipped on her back and her face and tummy stroked with a warm, wet washcloth. This mimics the mother cleaning, licking and grooming her baby to produce urine and feces. So, it's a really good thing Lily has begun grooming herself...a positive step forward! 
At first, I thought Lily was about 5 weeks old but now I think she was between 3 and 4 weeks. Her eyes were blue, as are most newly born kittens, but look like they are going to stay blue! Now, she looks about 6 or 7 weeks, is gaining weight and due to be de-wormed tomorrow. She has begun to eat canned cat food...ugh...and as soon as she's able, she'll eat kitten kibble. For more information on kitten development, visit here. Yes, Lily was taken from her mother at an early age but her mother was elsewhere. She was probably eating her own breakfast, getting a drink of water or even hunting. At any rate, Lily has a chance at life now; at the barn, she was nothing more than a meal waiting to be eaten. Lily is happy; so should you be for Lily.

Blessings ~ Lily ~ Sadie ~ Sam ~ Sophie ~ miracles, on a daily basis ~ 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

"All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful
for those who keep the demands of His covenant."
"To recognize with delight all high and generous and beautiful actions; to find a joy even in seeing the good qualities of your bitterest opponents, and to admire those qualities even in those with whom you have least sympathy; be it either the Romanist or the Unitarian, this is the only spirit which can heal the love of slander and of calumny." 
"In peace, Love tunes the shepherd's reed;
In war, he mounts the warrior's steed;
In halls, in gay attire is seen:
in Hamlets, dances on the green.
Love rules the court, the camp, the grove,
And men below, and saints above;
For love is heaven, and heaven is love."
"Thou shalt love the Lord the God with thy whole heart, with thy whole soul and with thy whole mind." This is the commandment of the great God, and He cannot command the impossible. Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within reach of every hand." ~ Mother Teresa ~
"Some people you have to love from a distance." 
~ me ~
"Where do you pasture your flock, O good shepherd, you who take on your shoulders the whole flock, for the whole of human nature that you take on your shoulders forms one sheep. Show me the place of green pastures and the restful waters, lead me to the grass that nourishes, call me by name, so that I who am your sheep may hear your voice. Give me by your voice eternal life. Speak to me, you whom my soul loves.
This is how I name you, for your names is above every name and cannot be uttered or comprehended by any rational nature. Your name, which reveals your goodness, is the love my soul has for you. How can I not love you who loved me, even though I was black, so much that you laid down your life for the other sheep whose shepherd you are? Greater love than this cannot be conceived, that you should purchase my salvation with your life."
"Father of spirits, this my sovereign plea
I bring again and yet again to Thee.
Fulfill me now with love, that I may know
A daily inflow; daily overflow.
For love, for love, my Lord was crucified,
With cords of love He bound me to His side.
Pour through me now; I yield myself to Thee,
O Lord that led my Lord to Calvary.
"This is the miracle that happens every time to those who really love: they more they give, the more they possess of that precious, nourishing love from which flowers and children have their strength and which could help all human beings if they would take it without doubting." ~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~
"The man who says, "I know him,"
but does not do what he commands is a liar, 
and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word,
God's love is truly made complete in him.
This is how we know we are in him;
Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did."

If you'd like a name added to the prayer list, please let me know. Unless told otherwise, names will be kept on the list for a month; around the world, people are praying.

Prayer Keeping ~ Maxine ~ Pamela ~ Sandy ~ Katie ~ Raeann ~ Geoffrey and Terry ~ Misha and J ~ Jane and Lance ~ Stephanie and family ~ Steve and Gwen ~ Quesenberry ~ Jill ~ Renee ~ Quesenberry family ~ Jessica and Erik ~ Debbie ~ Maryann and family ~ me ~

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Dr. Anne and Tippy

This post is about Dr. Anne and Tippy. Dr. Anne owns Crab Orchard Vet and is also a neighbor; she's Daddy John's sister and we all live in the same valley called Ward's Cove. This post has graphic photos of Dr. Anne spaying Tippy. I believe in spaying and neutering; it prevents a lot of illness, horrible deaths and cats, especially females, live longer, healthier lives. 
Kittens gain about one pound a month the first year of their life so when Tippy reached one four pound four ounces, that let me know she was old and strong enough to be spayed. About the graphic photos...if you're squeamish, it's best to leave now.
In the above photo, Tippy has received the beginning meds to cause drowsiness, then Ashley and Stephen insert a breathing tube down Tippy's throat.


She's placed on a clean towel, under which is a heating pad, and her legs are stretched out and tied. This prevents sudden movement which could result in something not so good happening. Note to self: never, ever have another operation!



A clean, sterilized paper drape is placed over Tippy and a hole cut over the uterus with sterilized tool at the ready.





Ashley, Daddy's John's wife, squeezes Tippy's bladder to drain it, after which the abdomen area will be cleaned and sterilized.
This is my favorite photo...the darkness surrounding Dr. Anne's hands, the first cut, the tools...it all makes for a fabulous photo...to my eye anyway. Here, Dr. Anne makes the first cut so she's then able to get to the fatty tissue. It surprised me to learn even a lean animal, human or otherwise, can have a lot of fatty tissue. Dr. Anne has to cut away the fatty tissue and then fish around don't you love my technical, medical term? for the uterus. Come to think of it, perhaps that's my situation...I'm lean and trim but all this fatty tissue hides my leaness and trimness. Ya think? HA! 


Dr. Anne has found the uterus and, prior to cutting and stitching, she's clamped it off to stem the flow of blood.


The point at the V is the uterus and the tubes on either side are where the kittens would grow. I was amazed at the small size!






Dr. Anne finishes suturing the wound, from the inside out, and the very last thing done before Tippy is removed from the table is 
Ashley, giving a squirt of superglue to close the wound and cover the sutures. We all know how animals like to pick at a wound and stitches, especially, are itchy when healing is taking place. Tippy can lick all she wants and the sutures won't be compromised. Dr. Anne uses dissolving suture material and in 120 days, that material will be no more. Amazing!
Tippy woke up on her own, on schedule and today, a week later, if you didn't know she'd been spayed, you'd be surprised. She's active, although I'm trying to keep her from rough housing too much, eating and drinking well and enjoying life. Tippy will enjoy life more, be happier and healthier because she won't be having litter after litter after litter of kittens every year.

Spaying reduces some types of cancer and there's no need for a cat to have a heat nor a littler of kittens ahem! prior to spaying. In fact, it's best if they don't. Yes, spaying is expensive, it costs about $100 to spay a feline, but it's part of the cost of having pets. There are some programs, such as Friends of Animals, that operate nationally, that provide financial assistance. Some vets will spay as young as eight weeks or two pounds of age but, thankfully, Dr. Anne waits until four pounds and four months of age. Generally, cats can have their first litter at around six months of age but some can be earlier.
Spaying and neutering is part of being a responsible pet owner. If people knew how many tax dollars went toward putting down animals, they would be shocked! Even when Dave and I would take barn cats to the shelter, we'd always hand them a donation of both food and money; it's the least we could do. We hated having someone else deal with our problems and with barn cats, it's always a problem of over-population. You might be surprised to know how feral cats are able to suss out where the food is located; that's how all of my barn cats came to live at the farm! At one time, I had only spayed or neutered barn cats, now I've got too many cats and am trying to catch them so I can take them to the county animal shelter. It's a sad fact of life but the good news is, Tippy was caught, brought to good health, spayed and will now live a longer, healthier, happier life.

Blessings ~ Dr. Anne ~ Ashley ~ Stephen ~ Tippy ~ Friends of Animals ~ 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

life:beautiful winners

A day late and a dollar short...it just dawned on me I neglected to let two women know they have won a copy of life:beautiful magazine. The original give-away was for one magazine but I've read my copy very, very carefully and am now giving it away as well.

Midlo Mom and Timi have each won a copy. Midlo Mom's copy will be going to beautiful Midlothian, very near Richmond, VA and Timi's copy will wing its way to Hungary! 

Want to read something funny? Midlo Mom lives fewer than three hundred miles from me and we've never met. Timi lives in Hungary and she, her family and I spent a delightful two days together last year. I also visited with Jane and Lance and am counting the days until I can visit with all of them again. Truly, some of the most delightful memories I have are of those days spent in Budapest with my new friends whom I met through blogging!

Blessings ~ life:beautiful magazine ~ Midlo Mom ~ Timi ~ Jane and Lance ~ 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Saturday Night Cook-out

 Burning the brush pile so we can have a cookout.

Erik uses the chain saw to cut up downed tree limbs...
and on the tractor with stacked fire wood in foreground.
 Always enough good food!
 Big B's usual look when someone says something he thinks is stupid -LOL-.
I was going to say I almost didn't recognize Daddy John out of his bibs but then thought again. smile! What I mean is, we hardly ever see him in a pair of jeans; looks good, doncha tink?!
 Little Miss loves to bedevil Erik and Daniel; here, she's stealing Erik's hat. We told her it was a dirty, nasty hat but she wouldn't listen so then we told her to throw it in the fire...but she wouldn't listen.
Just think Daddy John and Ashley...wonder what she's going to be like in another ten years?! 
The children's table.












Last of the campfire.
Little Miss and Daniel watching the last sparkler.
This past weekend was FULL...of delight, fun, food, company, festival, sparklers, beverages and good cheer! Autumn brings a chill and, until it turns cold, we're going to have a cookout each month. Saturday was so much fun; everyone who came had a great time, ate way too much good food and we sat around the campfire until we were stiff with cold. There was a LOT going on this past weekend; more to follow!

Blessings ~ help ~ good equipment ~ campfires ~ friends ~ sparklers ~ good food ~ marshmallows ~

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

~ daybreak ~
"And afterward I will pour out my Spirit on all people
Your sons and daughters will prophesy
Your old men will dream dreams
Your young men will see visions."
"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream at night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible."
"Dream as if you'll live forever. 
Live as if you'll die today." 
~ James Dean ~
"A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world." ~ Oscar Wilde ~
"People need dreams. There's as much nourishment in 'em as food." ~ Dorothy Gilman
"A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams."
"Dreams have only one owner at a time.
That's why dreamers are lonely."
"God's gifts put man's best dreams to shame."
"It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else."
"In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.

If you'd like a name added to the prayer list, please let me know. Unless told otherwise, names stay on the list for a month; around the world, people are praying.

Prayer Keeping ~ Maxine ~ Pamela ~ Katie ~ Sandy ~ Raeann ~ Geoffrey and Terry ~ Timi and family ~ Kim ~ Renee ~ Stephanie and family ~ Quesenberry family ~ Steve and Gwen ~ Misha and J ~ Jill ~ Debbie ~ Yvonne ~ me ~ 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Farm Chores

life beautiful giveaway ends Friday, Sept 14.
~ stables at Thistle Cove Farm ~
Behind the stables is a livestock water trough that, fairly often, gets an air lock. The upper left end is where the John Deere is stored, the hay loft is top middle and the lower right is where the Ranger lives next to the tack room. But I digress.
So, I drag out my cut off broom handle, wrapped with black electricians tape and chunka, chunka, chunka the water overflow pipe until the air lock bursts loose and water flows freely again. This particular trough feeds two other troughs so it's vital it works at all times. 
Cattle, horses, sheep, cats and various wildlife are dependent upon this water.
If you don't know, calves are the closest thing on four legs to teenage boys I've ever seen in my life! I swear, if they could talk, all you'd hear is, "HEY! Watch this!" Some of my fences are in terrific condition and others...hmmmm, not so much. Especially now. The Boys, as they are mostly called around here, decided it would be fun to see how many fence posts they could break. Then one calf decided it would be fun to go over the fence, down the bank, out into the road and na na na na na his friends who stood watching. Thank God, all of them didn't decide to do likewise; it was hard enough dealing with one escape artist. 
While I'm using the car to maneuver the calf back down the road, an older gentleman comes up the road. I'm waving him...go to the right, go to the right! when he pulls up and stops. "Do you need any help?" 
Wellllll. Yes. But. This feller looks to be in his mid 70's, perhaps older...? So, I'm torn between saying yes, and praying he won't keel over of a heart attack, or saying no and him thinking I'm an ingrate. As I've heard all my life.
So, I say yes and I head to the driveway so I can open the gate so the calf can, hopefully, be persuaded to go into the barn lot. In the meantime, I also walk to the upper pasture and call the others...."HERE BOYS, COME HERE BOYS. MOOOOOO BOYS!" Oh yeah, it's a sight. You and a camera could be contenders for American's Funniest Videos $10K prize should you film this!
Eventually, all is well...the small herd of calves head to the barn, Daddy John -as I now call him because he has a son named John, then there's John C. and John M. all in the valley and it's getting confusing. So Daddy John is headed up the road on his John Deere which, as almost everyone knows yellow and green are the only colors decent tractors come in, and he herds the calf back to the barn lot. No mean task because the dratted calf has decided to go down the road while his buddies follow alongside the fence. "HEY!" they call out. "We want to come with you!" Meanwhile, the dratted calf is bellowing, "But I want to be with you guys!"
Why do I have cattle?
I take a pile of metal T posts, my post driver and the dogs and I head to the pasture. It takes a while but I'm able to jury rig the fence so the cattle will stay in. Right. As long as they don't decide to go through the fence again, they'll stay in.
See. As they say around here...good enough for gubmint work! 
There's plenty more going on around the farm but I'm too busy, just now, to sit at the computer very long. This morning, the temperature was 46 degrees F so Autumn is on her way and in a hurry. There are still are few hummingbirds hanging around but I trust them to know their business, when this feeder is empty, almost empty now, it won't be re-filled. 
My good news...as I'm going around the farm doing chores, as God brings your name to mind, you're tucked into prayer. Doesn't that sound wonderful!? It does to me too! smile

Blessings ~ Daddy John ~ old feller who was willing even if not much able ~ metal T posts ~ post driver ~ Roy Rogers ~ stables ~ John Deere ~ Ranger ~ the strength to do the work God sets before me ~

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

~ morning breaks in the valley ~
"Test me, O Lord, and try me, examine my heart and my mind..."
"A retrospect of my whole life, from the earliest period of my recollection down to the present hour, leaves me with this impression; that I have been, and am being, guided by a gracious and a mighty Hand, which has made, and is making, that possible to me which otherwise to me had been impossible. Oh that I had at all times unhesitatingly trusted and yielded myself to its guidance!" ~ Richard Rothe
"Not a broken, brief obedience
Does the Lord of heaven demand,
He requires our whole allegiance,
Words and deeds, and heart and hand:
God will hold divided sway With no diety of clay."
~ anonymous ~
"God is God. Because He is God, He is worthy of my trust and obedience. I will find rest nowhere but in His holy will that is unspeakable beyond my largest notions of what He is up to." ~ Elisabeth Elliott
"The artist is a servant who is willing to be a birthgiver. In a very real sense the artist (male or female) should be like Mary who, when the angel told her that she was to bear the Messiah, was obedient to the command.
...I believe that each work of art, whether it is a work of great genius, or something very small, comes to the artist and says, "Here I am. Enflesh me. Give birth to me." And the artist either says, "My soul doth magnify the Lord," and willing becomes the bearer of the work, or refuses; but the obedient response is not necessarily a conscious one, and not everyone has the humble, courageous obedience of Mary.
As for Mary, she was little more than a child when the angel came to her; she had no lost her child's creative acceptance of the realities moving on the other side of the everyday world. We lose our ability to see angels as we grow older, and that is a tragic loss."
"He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep 
to gain what he cannot lose."
"I know the power obedience has 
of making things easy 
which seem impossible."
" God's abilities for our disabilities."
~ anonymous ~
"And why do you call me Lord, Lord and do not do what I say?"

If you'd like a name added to the prayer list, please let me know. Unless told otherwise, names stay on the list for a month; around the world, people are praying.

Prayer Keeping ~ Maxine ~ Raeann ~ Geoffrey and Terry ~ Timi and family ~ Kim ~ Renee ~ Stephanie and family ~ Steve and Gwen ~ Misha and J ~ Jill ~ Debbie ~ Yvonne ~ Sandy ~ me ~

Friday, September 07, 2012

life beautiful giveaway

~ Lily, waving hello ~
While at the barn, recently, I hear mewling. Eventually, I followed the sound to the hay loft where I found this little one. Kimberly, a young friend, named this little one Lily which is odd, because in the last month or so, two human Lily's have crossed my path. Anyway, Lily it is and she's quite young, perhaps 5 weeks and I've been feeding her with an eyedropper. Yesterday, I broke down and bought a kitten bottle and she'll drink from it but doesn't enjoy it. Could it be the little rascal has already become accustomed to being fed instead of feeding? Oh dear. I hope she's not a liberal Democrat a conservative.
~ my barn loft ~
She came to the house, stuffed inside my shirt, because of the huge barn owl perched overhead, staring in disapproval because I'd snatched his warm meal almost from his mouth. Lily lives in the bathtub until she's big enough to move to the bathroom and, eventually, to the rest of the house. She's fed every 2 to 3 hours during the day but, selfish me, I only feed her once in the middle of the night.
The feeder had to be moved so, using the Ranger, I piled everything on and everyone in, and changed location. You can, just barely, see the white face of a black Angus peering from the side of the building. Once moved, the feeder was filled with mineral salt.
Could it be the boys are enjoying their minerals? I take my stewardship seriously and provide quality minerals, feed and clean, cold mountain river water for all my animals. 
~ doe and twin fawns ~
A lot of evenings are spent on the back porch, watching this mama and her two babies. If someone drives by, slows down and stops, I jump to my feet and begin screaming, whistling and, in general, making as much noise as possible. This alerts Mama to call to her young and flee. No, as a matter of fact I don't trust people; there are far too many instances of me finding deer dead in the field because some stupid idiot...or is that an oxymoron?... has shot a deer out of season and from the road. I don't mind hunters and know they provide a service both to nature and to their families, and, around here, the men hunt to put meat on the table. They'll spend hours, even days, tracking something they've shot and wounded. It's a sad fact of hunting but not every shot is a kill shot. 
~ 22.5 round bales~
John, my neighbor down the road, and some buddies, perhaps even Ashley, his wife, put up my hay. God blessed us with good weather and twenty-two and a half bales were cut, kicked, raked and baled DRY! Thank You, God! And, thank you John and all!
Once again, another month anniversary of Dave's death has come and gone with me not remembering. Thank you, God. I think. Is life beautiful? Yes. Is life difficult? Yes. Do I miss Dave every single solitary day? Yes. A friend asked, "Do you ever go into a room and start to speak to Dave, then realize he's not there?" I didn't answer her then but will now. The answer is, "not hardly. There's never a day that I don't remember he's dead. There's never a day that I don't miss him." But, for two months in a row, I've missed the anniversary date of his death so, I'm healing...right? I'm growing ahead. I'm beginning to understand again, in a heart sense, life is beautiful
Are you familiar with the magazine life:beautiful...faith for your journey? I buy it whenever I see it and, probably, should subscribe. Today, I found the summer 2012 issue and picked up two copies. When I finish this blog entry, I'm taking the magazine and a glass of tea to the back porch where I'll spend a few minutes, relaxing, before getting on the mower and getting back to chores.
I want one of you to relax, so, please leave me a comment and let me know your favorite way to relax. This time next week, Friday, September 14, around 3 p.m., using Random.org, a name will be chosen to receive a copy of this issue.
In the midst of life's hardships, let's agree...life is beautiful!

Blessings ~ healing ~ calves ~ deer ~ fawns ~ dry hay ~ Lily ~ life:beautiful ~

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Vicki's Grow Your Blog Party

Vicki, 2 Bags Full, is having a Grow Your Blog party and wants you to come but only if you want your blog to gain more visitors and followers. Vicki is an amazing woman...kind, generous and talented; if she weren't so nice, she'd be intimidating as all get out! 
She has a Sacred Yarn Room...love it!...and makes these amazing, beautiful, wonderful nests she sells on etsy. 
She's also featured in Romantic Country Fall 2012 magazine; well deserved too! Fifi O'Neill is the editor of Romantic Country, as well as a slew of other eye candy publications, and a visit to her site is time well spent. Whenever I visit a big box book store, I can spend a few hours dreaming deep into her publications.
Vicki is a travel writer published in Living Better at 50. Her article, Tips for Cruising , is the best I've ever read and can be used for non-cruise travel as well. 
While you're visiting Vicki's article at Living Better at 50, plan on spending additional time perusing this fabulous e-mag site. 
I believe Vicki is taking some time off from her blog but plans the Grow Your Blog Party for January 2013. She has room for bloggers with fewer than 200 followers and more than 200 followers...Vicki's made room for everyone!
Thistle Cove Farm is included; how about you?

Blessings ~ Vicki ~ Grow Your Blog Party ~ participants ~ encouragement ~ encouragers ~

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Sabbath Keeping

~ winging their way home ~
"Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people whom he has chosen as his heritage! The LORD looks down from heaven; he sees all the children of man; from where he sits enthroned, he looks out on all the inhabitants of the earth, he who fashions the hearts of them all and observes all their deeds."
"It is the Creator's Grand Army, and He is the Commander-in-Chief... With these facts before you, now try to guess man's chiefest pet name for this ferocious Commander-in-Chief? I will save you the trouble but you must not laugh. It is Our Father in heaven."
~ Mark Twain
"Earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot heal." 
"He whose head is in heaven, 
need not fear to put his feet into the grave."
"Aim at heaven, and you will get earth thrown in. 
Aim at earth and you get neither."
"If there were no hell, 
the loss of heaven would be hell."
"I can safely say on the authority of all that is revealed in the word of God, that any man or woman on this earth who is bored or turned off by worship is not ready for heaven."
~ A. W. Tozer
"Charles Fuller (1887-1968), a preacher and director of The Old Fashioned Revival Hour radio program, announced he was going to be speaking the next week on heaven. During that week of preparation, he received a letter from an older man who was very ill:
Next Sunday you are to talk about heaven. I am interested in that land, because I have held a clear title to a bit of property there for over 55 years. I did not buy it. It was given to me without money and without price. But the Donor purchased it for me at tremendous sacrifice. I am not holding it for speculation since it is not transferable. It is not a vacant lot. For more than half a century I have been sending materials out of which the greatest Architect and Builder of the universe has been building a home for which will never need to be remodeled or repaired because it will suit me perfectly, individually, and will never grow old. Termites can never undermine its foundations for they rest on the rock of ages. Fire cannot destroy it. Floods cannot wash it away. No locks nor bolts will ever be placed upon its doors, for no vicious person can ever enter than land where my dwelling stands, now almost completed and almost ready for me to enter in and abide in peace eternally, without fear of being ejected. There is a valley of deep shadow between the place where I live in California and that to which I shall journey in a very short time. I cannot reach my home in that City of God without passing through this dark valley of shadows. But I am not afraid because the best Friend I ever had went through the same valley long, long ago and drove away all its gloom. He has stuck by me through thick and thin since we first became acquainted 55 years ago, and I hold His promise in printed form, never to forsake me or leave me alone. He will be with me as I walk through the valley of shadows, and I shall not lose my way when He is with me. I hope to hear your sermon on heaven next Sunday from my home in Los Angeles, California, but I have no assurance that I shall be able to do so. My ticket to heaven has no dated marked for the journey, no return coupon, and no permit for baggage. Yes, I am all ready to go and I may not be here while you are talking next Sunday evening, but I shall meet you there some day."
~ borrowed from Mennonite Girls Can Cook ~
"I'm ready to go but I'm not homesick."
~ Jim Bennett ~
"Let not your heart be troubled: 
ye believe in God, believe also in me. 
In my Father's house there are many mansions: 
if it were not so, I would have told you. 
I go to prepare a place for you."
~ John 14:1-7 ~ 

If you'd like a name added to the prayer list, please let me know. Unless told otherwise, names stay on the list for one month; around the world, people are praying.

Prayer Keeping ~ Maxine ~ Raeann ~ Geoffrey and Terry ~ Kary ~ Kim ~ Renee ~ Jane and Lance ~ Stephanie and family ~ Timi and family ~ Steve and Gwen ~ Misha and J ~ Jill ~ Yvonne ~ me ~