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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.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Day's Sweetness

~ Sam and Tom ~
Just so you know, my day has plenty of sweetness that outweighs, mostly, all the hard, messy, cold, dangerous work. Dave was always a night owl and I'm a morning person; it worked out well because he would have his quiet time in the evenings, after I'd gone to bed and vice verse in the mornings. By the time he was ready for coffee, I'd been up a couple of hours, made coffee, had devotions and started breakfast. Being a creature of habit (aren't we all?), I still get up early and it's not unusual for me to be awake at 4:30 but, usually, it's more like 5:00 or 5:30. Every now and again I'll sleep in until 7 or 8 o'clock and then feel like I've wasted half my day. Anyway, lately it seems several of my posts have been on the whiny side so here's some sweetness. (If it bores you beyond've been warned, smile).
 One reason I get up so early is so I can have devotions. Each morning, unless there's an emergency, I sit in the sun room and read the Bible and other devotions then listen to Pastor's Youssef and Begg on XM Radio. If I can't get beyond first gear, sometimes I'll stay and listen to Chuck Swindoll as well. Dave used to get such a kick out of Pastor Swindoll's last name; he'd say, "What a perfect name for a preacher? Is he a swindler?" Not to my knowledge but he is a good teacher of Scripture.

The stacked books on the left are knitting, crochet and a novel or two. The books on the right are devotionals and Bible studies. The knitted wash cloths have scented soaps inside and are given to folks who have made my life a bit easier this past year. The women at the feed stores, auto repair and other places while the men receive short bread.
 I light a Wood Wick Candle because I enjoy the glow, fragrance and the sound. If you're not familiar with Wood Wick candles, instead of a cotton waxed wick they have a wooden stick wick.

All of us have our routine; Sadie sits to my left and starts out her morning (after treats, of course) by holding hands. She'll raise her paw and use it to nudge me until I take her paw in my hand and we sit, quietly, for a few minutes. 

Sam reclines on my right and when he feels Sadie is receiving too much attention, he'll slide over and tuck his head under my nightgown. By the way, if you like flannel nightgowns, Lanz makes the Most Wonderful flannel nightgowns! I've worn them for decades and they wear like iron and, when worn out, make excellent cleaning cloths. Recently, I found some at TJMaxx and they're more than 75% less than the price I found on the inter-net. 

Meanwhile, Sadie has stretched out so she can lay her head in my lap, 
while Tom sits on my stomach, sometimes resting his lower end on the top of Sadie's head. It's all right, we're all friends here.

In the past day we've gone from snow on the ground to bare ground. It's gotten above freezing, several days in a row, and everything has started to melt. (Which reminds me...I never did hang the laundry out today.)

I opened up the alfalfa field so the horses and alpacas can graze it; there's a lot of good pasture to be eaten and the manure they drop will aid in the new growth come spring.

I wait until 8:00 or thereabout to give Carly her morning meds with her breakfast. Some days I have to find her and other days she's still asleep. I'm disgustingly simple when it comes to the animals and try to make their lives as kind as possible.

When the dogs and I go to the barn, we check on Harry Shetland. He's an old wether, as old or older than Carly, and I'd love to bring him to the yard but he's better off at the barn, with no other sheep. He has the barn cats and guinea's for company, he's safe and I take him water and food twice a day.

He's blind and far safer where he can't be run over by the other animals. I was going to put him down but he's still enjoying his food and will move toward me when I shake his pan and call him. During nice weather, he can get in the sunshine and, at night or in bad weather, he can turn and go into the barn and lay down. He has free choice hay so he always had good food and water. I've noticed he prefers me to bring him fresh water in the morning and afternoon and he'll take a good long drink while I hold the bucket. Sometimes, he'll drink from the bucket when it's placed on the ground in front of him.  These animals are a study in patience for me; I can't become frustrated or get rushed or they'll panic and we'll be right back where we started. It's much easier for me to go slow, speak quietly, gentle and low and move slowly. Heck, it's probably good for me as well!

'PacaRose is doing fine, eating well, defecating properly and enjoying life with his bros.

The sheep are grazing the yard while the three guinea's wander amongst them. Generally, the guinea's roost in the sugar maple tree and have proven to be excellent "watch dogs". I've decided I'll always have guinea's as they are comedians as well as "watch dogs". They know when Sadie chases them, it's all for show; she just likes to hear them raise a ruckus.

A lot of my days, thank God, are simple and full of the work that it takes to keep this place going. I have two horses I throw hay to every morning and afternoon; I should get on the tractor and give them a round bale but, truth be told, my bones have been a bit creaky lately. Hard as it is to believe, it's just easier to climb in the loft and throw down a few square bales and tear them apart.

Daddy John, wife Ashley and their families have opened a restaurant (the restaurant business being, as Daddy John says, "the nearest thing to milking twice a day as I've ever seen!") and Ashley requested some knitted goods to display and sell. I had some things ready, then decided to knit some other things, and my poor hands are repaying me by not working properly. As in, I can do almost anything I want to do if it doesn't include picking up or holding things, knitting, or typing for any length of time. Ben and I go to bed together, nightly, with aspirin and a glass of alcoholic beverage. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a big drinker but Dave used to tell me, "Take some aspirin and drink a beer or glass of wine and you'll sleep a lot better." This was the same man who would tell me, "Don't you think you should wait until your head hits the pillow before you fall asleep?"
Ah...such Precious Memories.

Blessings ~ calm week ~ healthy animals ~ Andy Griffith ~ good music ~ sleep ~


  1. This means Christmas!!

  2. Beautiful blessings that He heaps upon us every day. Grace and strength sufficient for each day.

  3. Oh Sleep well you deserve to sleep well.:) Hug B

  4. I enjoyed this post so much! I am going back to read it again!
    I noticed your nightgown before you mentioned it! I never wear them because they end up all knotted or clear over my head because I sleep like a Mexican jumping bean! Pants it is! LOL!

    I can picture myself there. I really love your world!



  5. Christmas blessings to you! I always love reading about your days-so filled with hard work and life. I pray your winter is mild so you can have it a bit easier but also for the grace and strength to carry on.
    Hugs to you.

  6. What a beautiful post! Merry Christmas to you and your menagerie.

  7. everything seems right in the world beautiful post-Merry Christmas hugs from the ozarks Kathy

  8. This was a wonderful, wonderful post. I am a morning person also and hubby is a late riser. I get my "wake up" time all to myself and I like that.

    I can read the thread of loss in your words. I am sure this is a hard time of year for you. It is good that you stay as busy as you do-so that you don't have time to dwell on the pain- xo Diana

  9. Anonymous9:44 PM EST

    Oh I love the description of your mornings with your devotions and your sweet animals. A perfect way to start the day!

  10. I'm glad to see that your confidence and your sense of humor are in tact.
    Our animals are such a blessing to us. The traits God has put in them make them truly amazing. They sure love us!
    Merry Christmas Sandra!

  11. Thank you so much sharing this post today Sandra. Things have been pretty tough here and this is just what I needed to read tonight.

  12. Dear One, I liked this post. I felt like I was right there with you. Devotions early in the morning is a great time of day to meditate upon God's word. A wonderful way to start the day out. You're one busy Lady!

    May you have a vey Merry Christmas,

  13. Merry Christmas to you and your critters. I seldom need assistance falling asleep but tonight a little egg nog and whiskey for the Christmas Season. Take care.

  14. I can taste the sweetness.

  15. sounds like home...,,, calling across the fields...,,, come in!
    enjoyed this so much!

  16. I love the animal time while in your flannel. Animal cuddles and hand holds are kind of nice, aren't they?

  17. Dear, dear Sandra ~ This was such a wonderful post, full of goodness and blessings, of learning patience, and precious memories.

    I also am a morning person and it's when I have my devotional time. It's a great way to start the day.

    You inspire me with all that you do. Your words encourage me to live my new life with peace and joy. Each day is a gift!

    Love and hugs to you ~ FlowerLady

  18. I'm so happy all of you are doing well, am sorry for those rusty sore finger joints-I've over knitted recently and mine aren't too happy either. My Dad was an early riser, 4-4:30, this was when he did really are amazing and I'm so pleased you share your journey...stay warm and safe, best wishes to you and all of your babies :-).

  19. I noticed your pretty Lanz nightgown right away! LOVE! I am going to look at TJ Max, too!
    You have the same sort of book stacks going as I do, Sandra! And the view out that window! WOW!
    You are the sweetest animal caretaker EVER!
    I'm glad that SOME days are quieter for you and you snuggle in and think. Bless you, good pilgrim.

  20. Anonymous7:52 AM EST

    What would we do without the love and companionship of our animals? I read recently where the Rev. Billy Graham has a big fluffy cat that eats breakfast with him on his bed each a.m.

    Sending my love to you this Christmas Season.

  21. I loved seeing the sweet pictures of Sadie and Sam, Tom too. And especially Harry, thank God for a caregiver as patient as you are with him. Life is good there, Sandra, for all of them and for you as you have made this safe place, physically and spiritually.

    I don't think people realize when they're young that it is achy bones that will keep you awake nights when you're older. Bed is a relief when you first climb in, but after a while the bones protest even a nice soft bed.

  22. I love your morning ritual. It sounds so peaceful. I need to try that. Love the Wood Wick Candle, they do sound like a fire crackling. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas.
    ((HUGS)) Love, Debby

  23. Merry Christmas! Lovely post!

  24. Ridgebacks can be such needy creatures! And the females are usually such Divas!

  25. This is a sweet post and I love the photos. You sure work like a dawg. :) I wish Hubby could still work like that because we would both love having all that land and animals. Also, couldn't take the months of snow. I grew up in Florida and SE Georgia is about as cold as I can stand it.

    That's very wise to start the day with devotions. I used to do that too but then got out of the habit when I was on so many mind-altering pain killers.

    My Lucy (80 lb boxer) holds hands with her mouth. It's so cute! She gently puts her mouth around my hand when walking like she's saying "Come on, Mommy, keep up!" [ha ha] Jack (part one of the Jack Russell terrorist gang) puts his head on my chest now while I'm trying to type. Sam lays on Hubby. So we're a contented bunch too.

    Merry CHRISTmas my friend! ~:)

  26. Wonderful summary of your day to day - I also prefer to do devotionals in morning - a habit created by my years with Skip - he was a very early to rise and start bible reading, devotional time together. I no longer arise quite as early - lying abed until 6:30 or so most days.
    Sorry about the hands - I am learning to protect my paws - a bump or two causes more than a bruise! that doggone Arthur Ritis!
    BTW - Chuck Swindoll and his sister Lucy, both active in ministry in my area and definitely not swindlers - solid teaching and great sense of humor.
    I also like Alistair Begg - preset radio stations in car are all Christian teaching or music
    reminds me to live my faith even when in idiotic traffic! LOL

  27. Ah ... your delicious stacks of books.

    Merry Christmas.


  28. my sweet evelyn fur-daughter and i hold hands. it's not a shake, it's a real hand holding sweetness. makes me smile that one of your fur-babies does the same.


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