Friday, March 31, 2017

Lots of visitors in March!

Emily turned 19 on March 17.  Never mind that the only cake candles box we moved with us had only 14 candles in it.  We celebrated her birthday all week, and started with this yummy chocolate cake.
 We had friends from church, Sam and Hannah Kinnaman, and Esther Holloway over for Sunday dinner.
Esther Holloway, along with Tim and Patty Stamper family, are our Care and Connect Group for this quarter.  We enjoyed having the Stampers over for a Sunday meal recently also.
Sister Rachel Hill from church gave us this beautiful African violet as a welcome gift.  She gave me specific watering instructions and so far it is thriving.  
 Emily and I got to attend the Women of Worth meetings in both February and March.  We really enjoy going and being part of the group.
During Emily's birthday week, our dear friends from Colorado, Dr. Matt and Cara Brown, Faith, Hope, Lincoln, and Betty Brown, Matt's mother came to Kentucky.  They enjoyed going to the Creation Museum and the Ark Encounter while they were here, and they ate supper with us two evenings and went to Wednesday night church with us.  It was so wonderful to be with them again!  We miss them so much!  It did our hearts good to see them.
 They helped us celebrate Emily.
 Emily made a Dirt Cake for her birthday.
 Next my dear sister, Brenda, and niece Rebekah came to visit us!
 They were with us over Sunday and Rebekah played her clarinet with Emily.  This was during prelude before church.
 My sister Brenda and me
Brenda, Rebekah, and I went to a quilt show!  It was my first Kentucky quilt show and I really enjoyed it!  We did a selfie in front of the most colorful quilt we could find.
 Afterwards we went to Emily's Chick-fil-A for lunch and to surprise Emily.
Brenda, Rebekah and I went to the Ark Encounter and got our exercise walking all over the place.

It is huge!  There are new displays added since we went in September.
 Then we had Tim and Brenda for a weekend.  Brenda's Grandma Stevenson passed away at 103 and the funeral was in Kentucky, so we were a willing 'bed and breakfast' for them.  We have enjoyed eating on our deck several times lately and have an umbrella for our table now.
 Felix liked playing the piano with Grandma!
 All ready for church on Sunday morning!
 Aunt Emily and Felix
 Charissa loves her baby brother!
Tim and Brenda's family before going to the funeral.  We had a short time with them, but it was precious.
We had our church friends Doug and Joan Hodnett over for Sunday dinner.  We had interesting conversation and yummy made-from-scratch chocolate cake for dessert!
My brother, Lyndell and Sharen Scoles came to see us next! They came over for a visit Monday evening.  It was the only time the kids were all home. 
They went to the Creation Museum and the Ark Encounter on Tuesday and that evening, we met at a restaurant for supper.  
After we ate, they went to revival service with us.  
 It was so good to see them!!!  Haven't we been amazingly blessed with visitors this month!!!
 This week, Beulah and I were able to get several walks in and we are enjoying the flowering trees this Spring.  This beautiful one belongs to the neighbor next door.

Friday, March 10, 2017

A job blessing for Janet

In January, I started working as a companion to a dear lady I have known since I was twelve years old.  It is amazing that someone we knew so long ago in southwest Missouri now lives in Ohio and we live in Kentucky!  Beulah needs to have someone with her all the time because of memory issues.  This was a perfect job for me!  We spend Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday together each week, and mostly do fun things together.  On Fridays I do clean her daughter's house where she lives, so it is a busier day.  Most days are relaxing.  We take a walk if the weather is good.  We play games, read devotional, other books and the Bible, pray together, do some cooking or dishes, watch DVDs or listen to music CDs, color or do simple crafts, exercise, play the piano and sing together, watch sermons, water plants and visit.  I go through photo albums with her, reminding her of her extended family members' names.  She wants to be a prayer warrior for her precious family, but she can't remember their names.  When I pray for each one with her, she prays along with me and I think it meets her need, her desire to be that prayer warrior for them.  I count it a deep privilege to be in her life, keeping her engaged and safe.  
 I try to always keep in mind the incredible Christian woman she has been throughout her life.  She was the ultimate hostess, pastor's wife, musician and teacher, seamstress, embroiderer, quilt maker, mother, grandmother, gardener and canner.  She was always busy and productive. She cannot do or be most of those things anymore, but that is who she is and I honor her for it.  I know that her Alzheimer's disease will be progressive and things will not be as "fun" as time goes on.  I honor her daughters for taking on the responsibility and privilege of caring for her and I'm glad to be a part of that care team.  It is such a wonderful way to spend my time being a blessing since I am not homeschooling anymore.
One day, Beulah's cousin and her husband came by to visit.  She loves company even though she did not recognize her cousin.  Once she figured out they were kin, she was able to visit.  
She doesn't remember my name from minute to minute, but she knows I am her friend and I love her, and that is enough.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Struggles with squirrels

We have had troubles with squirrels hogging all the birdseed and using it up very quickly.  Squirrels are cute, but we much prefer the variety of birds around here that want some food.  Rowen tried to discourage the squirrels by the spikes he added to the arrangement.  However, they have tough bellies and were not deterred.  The other thing we tried was putting cayenne pepper on the food, which also failed to limit their appetites.  Now we are sprinkling birdseed on the deck rail and the deck floor.  The squirrels still come, but they can't rake in the food as easily.  It gives the birds a fair chance at the food.

Thanking the Lord for a job for Rowen!

We are so thankful that the Lord has provided a job for Rowen working for Budget Blinds.  The owners are very kind.  They gave Rowen the job of being installer.  He is being trained by a knowledgeable young man.  Besides all kinds of blinds, they also install Tailored Living systems.  Rowen is enjoying the type of work and the ones he works alongside.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Some "ancient" history from back in January

Here are some pictures from early January before the "away" kids left from their Christmas visit here.
Karen and Charissa
 On New Year's Day we went on a walk in the afternoon to Pride Park here in Taylor Mill.  It has a bridge and we wanted Jeffrey and Lesa to see the bridge because they love bridges.
 On the walk
 There is a Love Lock fence that we wanted to show Jeffrey and Lesa also.  They have a love lock of their own on the bridge in Ottumwa, Iowa.
 Brenda didn't happen to be along on the walk so she missed being in the couples photos. 
This was the walking group, except for Rowen who was taking the picture.
 Playing Interstate after Emily got off work at Chick-Fil-A on January 2. 
The last room we painted was Rowen and Janet's bedroom.  It had special challenges because of cracks and seams in the cathedral ceiling Rowen had to repair, so we saved it for last.
 Though not pictured, Elizabeth helped paint this room before she started back into college classes.
 We love the new colors.
 One kind of warm day, we took a walk down Old Taylor Mill Road.  There is a creek that gets really "busy" when we have rain.  It catches all the runoff from our subdivision.
 Emily took this picture of us before we turned around and went back home.
 Rowen had his 59th birthday on January 21.
 Quil, our 9.5 year old oldest grandchild sent Rowen this drawing in his birthday card.  We thought it was neat how similar his picture was to the work area Rowen created in his garage!
Emily did a pizza, games, and ice skating event with the church Youth Group.
 We had our January-February Care and Connect Friends (Gordon and Nancy Martin and Judy Johnson) plus Retha and our pastors, Darrell and Regina Stetler, over for Sunday dinner.
 We added words to our wall between the kitchen and family room:  With God Nothing Shall Be Impossible!  We needed that reminder as Rowen searched for a job.
And another view of more words on the wall from our front door.
  We had our associate pastors, Andrew and Sherilyn Stroud, Wilson, Marshall, and Karilee over for Sunday dinner.
 Since Karilee didn't show in the other picture, she gets her own!
Here is a picture from Facebook of our dear pastors and their wonderful wives.
 We've had some interesting birds at our feeder.    Two different kinds of woodpeckers:
 We think this is a different kind of redbird than a cardinal because he doesn't have a crest. 
 A beautiful January sunset off our deck.