Monday, December 31, 2007
New Calendar and Background
I changed the background several
times tonight when I figured out
HOW to do it! I put a Wolf Kahn:
It looked GREAT with the green
background but too summery.
I have this living Vermont -NY artist's
Calendar for 2008.
I replaced my 2007 calendar:
Carl Larsson, Swedish painter,
The background above
is his painting called Kitchen Scene.
God is there and He is Not Silent
Last day of this year and I think
about the Lord's goodness unto me!
He hears so well my voice. That amazes
me. He heard today as I prayed to find
a lost folder for my oldest son. He needed
to post on this day, Dec. 31, 2007,
a form for the CPA exam to be
paid for ~~ and I prayed to see that which
is lost! There it was on a book shelf, right
in front of Elizabeth Goudge! What a
combination ~~ a tax firm and an English
writer! All full of character! I praised God
that I know He is there, He is my Hope
(Sunday's sermon) and a new song continues
into the New Year!
Here's a link to a beautiful photo on Elizabeth
There's a Christmas poem of hers on the
front page and a tranquil home in the snow!
Sing hey for the God who fashioned for us
This bountiful splendour of earth,
Sing hey for courage and wisdom and love,
For beauty and healing and mirth.
But most for the Child Who on Christmas Day
Took upon Him our human birth.
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Christmas gift giving got over
on Thursday at one of my older
brother's house in Chapel Hill.
Fun evening with cousins and
in laws and 2 brothers and 1 sister.
I am one of 8 ~~~ so quiet is
something I treasure because there
was always some sort of commotion
going on! Such good memories nestled
in my mind to pull from for a good
story! We stopped in Southern Pines
to see the Christmas trees decorated
on every corner on the main street,
to eat at Sweet Basil ( lovely homemade
soup served in these colorful small bowls
that make it like a work of art) and then
to Mary, Mary Quite Contrary ( fun gift
shop) and the Country Bookstore. Stopped
by my mother's grave on the way out of town
to see sprays of holly, magnolia leaves and
nandina berries on each of her families graves.
All from my grandmother's yard! She loved
flowers and planted for every season to bring
into the house!
I'm reading some Elizabeth Goudge
Christmas short stories while preparing
for an "Odyssey" with my high school students!
Never read that epic! We'll celebrate when
done for such a feat! The Lord keeps giving
me a lightness to that journey of Odysseus!
May the Lord Jesus become more
of a lover of your soul. Amy Carmichael wrote:
"Blessed are the single-hearted, for they shall enjoy much peace. If you refuse to be hurried and pressed, if you stay your soul on God, nothing can keep you from that clearness of spirit which is life and peace. In that stillness you will know what His will is."
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
The Girls finally WIN
Emma and I were a
team last night in the Scrabble
Tournament. It was against the
two winning brothers and a dear
friend of ours. She is sort of like
an Aunt to my kids! Emma got
all the high counting letters and
used them.....with a little help from
her Mom, the scorekeeper!
Warm and cozy on Christmas
Monday, December 24, 2007
It was 7 degrees in Charlotte
24 years ago when our oldest,
Bryan, was born today! Actually,
it was at 12:59 a.m. which could
account for his night owl hours
today! It was one of the coldest
Christmases in Charlotte . Ken
brought all the presents to the
hospital the following morning.
A baby at Christmas.....!!!
We have a Scrabble tournament
going on during the holidays while
these college guys of ours are home
and with anyone who wants to play.
Bryan has won two games and Gordan
one. Their dad is awesome at it.
Emma and I do pretty well to keep
up. Now we all are trying to beat
Bryan! Watch out. His first word
on the first game was TAX ~~!!
and a Happy Birthday
We love you!
Saturday, December 22, 2007
After a wonderful, fun dinner
last night with my Bible Study
girls and husbands, tonight was
quiet. We watched an "angel"
movie ~ an old Cary Grant called
The Bishop's Wife. He's the angel
akin to It's a Wonderful Life. Black
and White and it's a snowy Christmas
in the movie. I always want to be
there , a sort of warmth to snow,
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
That small town hasn't changed much.
You'll be able to see it in "Leatherheads"
which comes in April! They filmed
up there for parts and in SC and in
Charlotte ( which my husband got in
on as a Press Agent). I smiled when I heard
from the media about filming in this
crossroads that my roots come from.
Oddly, I only have been there 3 times!
Clooney paid some children 20.00
at their lemonade stand for a drink
Emma and I met my sister and her
husband up in Tobaccoville yesterday
for the funeral of my mother's cousin
who was 94. Yes, there is a town , south
of Mt. Airy ( Mayberry) right near Hanging
Rock and north of Winston-Salem that
has that charming name! Gail and I
had been up to see the "Old Homestead"
after Mom died and to do some geneology
work! (even gravestone rubbings!) Evelyn
helped us identify Who was Who in old
photos. My sister whispered to me the first
time we went to the retirement home: "You
will remember her! She will remind you
of Mom." THAT was an understatement!
I walked away thinking I had meet a sister
of my mom's. Gail and I conclude to this
day that Mom was so busy with 8 children
that we didn't go up to Tobaccoville with her.
No memories , but the GRACE of God is
sufficient. We sat yesterday with all these distant
relatives who have the same BROWN
eyes as my mother and 7 out of 8 of her
children. (there's a blue eyed one from
her father's side!)
Amazing to hear that 5 generations were
present AND her oldest son sat with us.
He is 74~ imagine knowing your mother at
We sang a hymn called "Ninety and Nine"
that Evelyn had chosen because she
remembered her grandfather singing it
to her. That would have been my great-
grandfather. Evelyn was a charter member
of this small town church since she was 21.
Such deep rootedness! I found out the origins
of the hymn today and it birthed from a collegue
to DL Moody while in Scotland . There's a
connection to Northfield, Mass. in the late
1800's . My older brothers went to Mt. Hermon
in Northfield for their high school! Imagine
that! I wish I had known that yesterday or even
when we visited Evelyn.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Emma was given some tiny Christmas
tree lights for her dollhouse, that is
all decorated for the holidays!
Thank YOU to a dear friend!
We'll take some photos to post
when the head of the house gets
home! We are just bakers and
wrappers today ~~ decorating
the Christmas cookies and wrapping
Saturday, December 15, 2007
I sat down with my Bible to do
an Advent reading from a handout
from church. Psalm 72:18-19
Blessed be the Lord God,
the God of Israel,
WHO alone works wonders.
And blessed be His glorious
And may the whole earth be
filled with His Glory.
Amen and Amen.
From the short devotion:
Out of silence came the prophet,
John. Prophets come at God's
good pleasure for His purposes.
OH , how glorious a purpose was
the coming of John! The wonders
of God's greatest work began in
Zachariah's house. God glorifies
His name from the front porches
of His people~~
That was what happened in
my previous blog ~~ wonders
to show His good pleasure for
( not my house, but a bit similar)
I watched and heard God's fingerprints this week
upon two lives~ my sister's and a brand new
homeschooler. The latter needed courage to
take a step of faith with her 4 dear little ones
to bring them home. The angels surrounded her
amazingly. The first morning she saw another
mom walking with her children. Never saw her
before. She had prayed and God brought this friend
of mine into her path on the very first morning of
her homeschool. My week was bookended with
Ann. Late yesterday afternoon we got Ann a
babysitter ( my sweet neighbor who is Emma's
dear "older sister" in so many ways) so she
could go to a Christmas Party to celebrate! God
certainly does work deeply in our lives. He sort
of weaves this amazing , colorful tapestry as Edith
Schaeffer wrote about. I think this part has a
golden thread in it!
Monday and Friday were only the second
and third time I have ever seen Ann. I think more
times are coming!
Perugia Triptych: Angel of the Annunciation. 1437. Tempera on panel. Galleria Nazionale dell'Umbria, Perugia, Italy.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Just when you think it's quiet
An angel sounds!
It's been full of those sounds this week!
Angel Playing a Trumpet, detail from the Linaiuoli Triptych (1433)
Sunday, December 9, 2007
Songs of the Saviour
Tonight is the second performance
of The Songs of the Saviour at church.
Ken and Emma are in choirs and last
night was absolutely magnificent. Part
of the Charlotte Symphony plays with
harp, flute, strings, harpsichord, oboe,
brass......and most of the songs are from
Handel's Messiah. By the time we got to
O Come All Ye Faithful, you had to contain
yourself for that is right after the Hallelujah
Chorus from the Messiah! How can you
not pour out in praise unto the Lord.
Emma said the audience looks so colorful
from the stage! She said it like she was looking
at a Christmas Tree!
another Angel from Fra Angelico
Saturday, December 8, 2007
Laundry hung and Angels singing
Listening to Mass of the Children by
John Rutter. He wrote it in 2002 because
he had never written a Mass. Performed
first in Carnegie Hall . The Children's
Choir opens with Awake , My Soul
and frame the ending with Glory to Thee.
In between , the Adult Choir sings as one
waking up to the end of the day and
It's very, very heavenly and
angel like! Don't you like when the
composer tells you , just as an author in a
Preface, what and when it all happened ~~
that spark of creative energy, sort of electric!
The laundry is hung on this very warm
day in Advent as the third load is in the
Karin By The Linen Cupboard,1906
A Walk with Jane Austen
Thursday night our Book Club gathered
with a festive spread that included "Rout Cakes
for Mrs. Elton" ~~ IN Jane Austen's day, a rout
was a fashionable evening party and these were
( a shortbread cookie from Tea With Jane Austen
by Kim Wilson)
and a telephone call to the author! What
fun! We were all so excited to hear her voice
and ask her questions. Imagine doing that with
other authors! Lori Smith's second book is
about her journey to England to follow Jane's
steps and she wove her spiritual journey right along
side it. Very well written and I missed Lori's
voice when I closed the book. Her honesty and
struggles as a single , amidst the joy of knowing God,
reached past the issue of singleness-marriage.
Such delight in God's grace in her book:
" And this is where my walk with Jane Austen
comes in again, because Jane taught me
something about the value of an ordinary life~~
things I'm not sure I understood before I
was stripped of being able to do the ordinary."
....."there's no end to God's grace -- which is big
enough for every single day that I got up..."
Good book to recommend! Thank YOU Lori for
the blessing you gave us in a conversation with
you! Check out her blogs:
You'll find her in good company .
May God bless you , Lori and answer our prayers for
From a friend's blog:
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
This is a first ~~ being tagged!
It's from a lovely blog called
Letters from a Hill Farm. I was
introduced to Stacey Kent's magical
voice from Nan's blog and even had Ken
look up her blog when I was at Borders
to find this singer's name!
So here goes:
What is your most enduring Christmas memory?
Getting our puppy collie on Christmas morning.
How my mother kept it from us 8 kids, I'll never
know. My older brothers knew Brandy was in the
house Christmas Eve , but we younger ones didn't.
She came bounding out into the living room Christmas
Do you have a favourite piece of Christmas music?
I keep listening to different versions of
On a Bleak Midwinter, in particular a CD
from Redeemer PCA in NYC....
and the Hallelujah Chorus!
Can't help but sing from the depths of my heart
..And He will Reign Forever and Forever! Amen!
Do you stick to the old family traditions?
Yes, because they always feel good like my
old slippers. We have introduced some new
ones as the boys have gotten to be young adults.
One is going out to lunch on Christmas Eve to
celebrate our oldest's birthday, we started when
he turned 21. A friend told me
that they do "secret" gifts within the family. Her
neighbor picks the names out of a hat and they
have to give something that doesn't cost anything.
She likes to get the ones still at home ~~ she makes
their bed and picks up their room every morning for
a year!!! I wanted to be in her family! May start that
tradition this year, once my college sons are home!
What makes your mouth water at Christmas time?
We have lamb on Christmas. I love to light candles
and put on music with dinners. We have Christmas cookies
and we have a Honey Bake Ham dinner sent by
Ken's brother on the week of Christmas. That is such
a gift ~~ the boys always ask if it has arrived!
How soon do you put the Christmas tree up and
when will take it down?
I grew up decorating the tree on Christmas Eve!
My dad would get the biggest tree for a bargain.
We now decorate it about 2 weeks before Christmas
and keep it up until just past New Year's. This year
I may keep the white lights I strung across the mantle
up all year. They have brought a warmth as soon as the
sun goes down! Even my husband said "That is so nice!"
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
You'll have to read Evan's letter
Those were Emma's words about her
letter from her brother away for one more
week ~~ in college! She giggled while she
read it late this afternoon. I was trying to
do Yoga. I did and hopefully can keep it up
to stretch out these old limbs!
I also got our second Christmas card-letter
today. The first being the Fairy Calendar and
card! Both are from those called by the Lord
to serve in missions. These know much about
prayer and communication!
I'm trying to get cards to college students
before they come "home for the holidays!"
It can be a lonely place and mail always
brings a hug.
I do love this card maker who makes
them to support college ministry~ Coalition
for Christian Outreach. I've never met
Bonnie , the artist. I do help evaluate her
new cards she's designed, which is a blessing
to a letter writer!
Gold Foil G-clef against the stars
And suddenly there was with the angels a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased. —Luke 2:13-14
when I read the letter!
Monday, December 3, 2007
We started the morning at the library
for the Symphony Talk to hear the
Baritone from the Opera , one of the Wise
Men in the production of Amahl and the Night
Visitors. I picked up several new books
and the audio of Shepherd's Abiding.
Jan Karon's book (Christmas story) came
out 4 years ago. I read it out loud to my
mother, who was out of the hospital
with 24 hour care! We started just about
when the story does ~~ October 1st. She loved
Mitford and Father Tim. She fell asleep with
the lull of my voice reading
about Father Tims' surprise for Cynthia.
She only heard half the book, for God
took her on the 22nd to be HOME for
Christmas. How she longed to see her
parents and she had healed down to the
bottom of her soul with any bitterness
towards my father. ( divorce) I saw
the Gospel ringing true to Jesus' words.
"Forgive those who trespass against you..."
He healed a deep wound in her.
We sang Hallelujah as my dear sister
in tears said "We have to sing!" She
was Home for the Holidays!
We're listening to the audio in the car and
the rest of the day was a "Mitford" one.
Heard from a good young mom this morning.
That blessed me! Saw my neighbor at the
grocery store. Then a quilter friend of a friend
right after that. Two at the Harris Teeter!!
Here's what we need ~~ from the first
chapter, the first paragraph:
"The rain began punctually at five o'clock,
though few were awake to hear it. It was
a gentle rain,rather like a summer shower
that had escaped the grip of time or season
and wandered into Mitford several months
Jan Karon's site has the first chapters
online. You turn the pages of the books
on the bottom corners of the page JUST
like you would with a real book. Amazing
Saturday, December 1, 2007
Christmas Fairy from Worthing
A dear friend's friend in Worthing,
England sent Emma a Fairy Calendar
and a sweet Christmas card that is
an English mailbox. They are different
over the great ocean.
We were so surprised and so deeply
touched that someone thought of her
from afar! She writes:
"and may 2008 be a good year for
you all as you learn more about Jesus."
Something so sparkly and magical in the
Spirit of God!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Angel on an Altarpiece
Oil on canvas
'God Almighty, and with Him
Cherubim and Seraphim,
Filling all eternity-- GK Chesterton
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Advent , Angels and Angelica
Sunday, November 25, 2007
in Comparative Literature
and meets her husband Jim Tomlinson, an
Oxford saxophonist. Now they make music
To welcome my siblings home from St. Martin:
Saturday, November 24, 2007
For the Election Year Ahead
From a book I'm teaching next week
to my high school students:
The History of Rasselas, Prince
of Abissinia by Samuel Johnson:
"The prince, whose humanity would
not suffer him to insult misery without
reproof, went away convinced of the
emptiness of rhetorical sound, and the
inefficacy of polished periods and
An afternoon coffee with a dear friend,
23 years younger than me,
is so refreshing. I am reminded how
God brings us a taste of eternity in
knowing one another, in the continuity
of relationships, and what that holds.
It holds weddings ( Emma was her flower
girl) and children ( mine! , we're waiting on
that with this young couple!) and books
and how God is bringing our callings to
our doorsteps. Had to come home and
find out where Burma is! She's learning
ESL to teach refugees from this faraway land.
Our relationship started with letters about
Charlotte Mason! Then I found a letter writer
who I pray will write a children's book one day.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
come home for this holiday. Just us.....
Some of my family are celebrating BIG
birthdays in St. Martin ( sister turned 50 yesterday,
brother turning 60 in Dec. and sisterinlaw 40 in late Dec)
and some in Nairobi, Kenya ( missions
trip of Ken's brother turning 50).......my other
siblings ( 8 of us) are either home or one is in Hawaii visiting
his son from Conn . Warm weather Thanksgivings!
Turkeys will appear even in foreign lands.
My five are home for the holiday!
Here we are warm and
the leaves are still glorious in their brillant colors!
Lots to be thankful for ~~ so much.
Thank YOU Lord!
Ernest Shepherd's daughter was also an
illustrator: Mary Shephard illustrated
Mary Poppins. Born on Christmas Day
in 1909, she died in 2000.
P.L. Travers ( Pamela) wanted Ernest to
do the illustrations, but he was too busy.
She saw a Christmas card on the mantle
of a friend that was "a happy imperfection
and a sense of wonder." It was by Mary
Shepherd who was 23 and out of Art School.
Mary used a wooden peg Dutch doll she had in
her attic for her model for Mary Poppins.
The film version beared true to the illustrations
in the costumes of Julie Andrews. Shepherd
received a payment from the film co.
From the New York Times:
A family memorial service was held at the
Hampstead Parish Church on Sept. 14, where
Miss Shepard worshiped daily as long as she was able.
Drawn From Memory is Ernest
Shepherd's autobiography of his
childhood. I have it from the library
right now in a pile!! I'm reading
about Samuel Johnson ~~ he wrote
the first four Mary Poppins books
Monday, November 19, 2007
We heard Musical Heirs Christmas
Concert last night before they leave
for France on Friday. A mission's trip for
these young homeschoolers!
One song in particular makes my heart
sing. Shepherd's Pipe Song was the first
song the British composer John Rutter
had published. He was 18 . He was in the
choir at High Gate, North London. A fellow
classmate, John Tavener, and Rutter then
composed a carol a year. This was in the
Rutter now directs The Cambridge Singers.
Google the title of the Carol to hear it!
We love his song about Wind in the Willows!
It makes my husband chuckle! He loves
that book ....and Rat and Mole.
THE Mole had been working very hard all the morning, spring-cleaning his little home. First with brooms, then with dusters; then on ladders and steps and chairs, with a brush and a pail of whitewash; till he had dust in his throat and eyes, and splashes of whitewash all over his black fur, and an aching back and weary arms. Spring was moving in the air above and in the earth below and around him, penetrating even his dark and lowly little house with its spirit of divine discontent and longing. It was small wonder, then, that he suddenly flung down his brush on the floor, said `Bother!'
Ernest Shepherd , illustrator of Winnie the Pooh, also did a version on Wind and the
Willow in 1931:
Shepard also did the illustrations for many other books, his most famous work being for Richard Jefferie's Bevis in 1932, and Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows, which he did in 1931. In earlier editions, The Wind in the Willows had been illustrated by three different artists, none of which satisfied Grahame. Grahame was not even sure that Shepard could do the job properly when he offered him the work. After seeing Shepard's sketches, though, Grahame was very pleased.
Cover of the first edition
Thursday, November 15, 2007
The North Wind
It's blowing in this afternoon. It's snowing up
in Boone! Someone told me it would before
We finished Project Presentations today ~
Ancient Science and Math Projects.
They always bless me because they work
out knowledge and produce something
more than the project! Gordan made a chain
mail glove from Rome , used by the gladiators.
The parents of my students blessed me with
a beautiful laundry basketful of teas, cookies,
candles, a teacup, coffee, and even toilet paper.
I was so touched! God certainly gets all the glory
for calling us all to this work! Surprised by JOY.
That's been our theme for the 3 years we've
undertaken to educate a Gileskirk group.
St Giles, Edinburgh
St Giles Kirk, Edinburgh
©1995-2007 Gazetteer for Scotland
Thistle Chapel ceiling. Photo: WordRidden
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
One of those Four Loves
We are listening to The Four Loves read by CS
Lewis in the car yesterday and today.
The skies are a blustery greyish-blue clouds
that make the brightly colored Autumn trees
seem like a painting. Suddenly I felt like
I was back 3 years ago in the small town
my mother and sister live. That day I stopped
before going to Mom's house
to care for her and walked down the sidewalk with
the same sky. I picked up deep red and deep gold
leaves and brought them to her. Her face lit
up and she wanted to keep them on her bedstand
so to know that Fall was here! Such glorious colors
our Lord makes! I read Jan Karon's newest book to
her "Shepherds Abiding" ~~ and the Great Shepherd
cared for her until right before Christmas that year.
He took her home.
" The Greeks called this love 'storge'( 2 syllables
and the g is hard) . I shall here call it simply
Affection. My Greek lexicon defines 'storge' as
'affection , especially between
of parents to offspring,' but of offspring to parents.
Affection would not be affection if it was loudly and
frequently expressed; to produce it in public
is like getting your household furniture out
for a move. It did very well in its place, but looks
shabby or tawdry or grotesque in the sunshine.
Affections almost slinks or seeps through our
lives. It lives with humble, undress, private
soft slippers, old jokes, the thump of a sleepy
dog's tail on the kitchen floor, the sound of a
sewing machine, a gollywog left on the lawn."
Southern Pines, NC
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Lots to be thankful for when we pray,
God gives answers.I'm always looking
Thursday, our oldest accepted a very
good job when Grad School is over in May.
Praise God ! Friday, the third son called that
he was going to a Ron Paul Rally in Philly~
the next day. I wondered if he and his Georgia
rooted friend knew how far Philadelphia is!
He's always been a back seat traveller on our
long trips up north. I kept praying for God's
care for them. Saturday morning the checks
I deposited in his account to help with the hotel
room cleared and I remembered a nephew
is in school at Drexel, right in the heart of Phil.
I had a joyful song in my heart Saturday
morning as I saw God's care for that simple
prayer: take care of him Lord! Making scones
and clotted cream with Emma was full
of praising God as we got the house ready
for 18 to a 40th Birthday Tea!
Have you seen grown women try on hats to
wear while they have tea? They made me laugh
and everyone wore my Grandmother's hats.
I thought about Grammy and how stylish her
hats were. We played "dress up " with them, seeing
which ones fit our heads AND our outfits!
Will post some photos when my helpers
can do the technical photo work! At least
get them off the camera and from one computer
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Chill in the Air
My college freshman in the mountains
said the weather is "character building!"
That made me chuckle!
He just emailed about a comment in
his Freshman Seminar about ethics:
There are no moral absolutes .
hmmm.....what? That was his response
to the stupidity of that professor.
Postmodernism in the classroom.
Wonder if Evan can teach him or the professor
may be in a position one day to wish he believed
in absolute moral ethics.
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Two important words: THANK YOU
A top accounting firm , who offered an excellent
starting package after Graduate School, said
he stood out because he sent THANK YOU emails after each interview.
He said there were good candidates but that simple act demonstrated
integrity and consideration. My husband blessed
me by saying ,"You taught him that."
You never know where blessings will
come from, especially in child training!
Sunday, November 4, 2007
An Extra Hour
Daylight Savings time gave my second son an extra hour he didn't know he had
this morning. He got to church on time! It gave my third son more time today to get
back to college in the mountains~ me driving back in the dark. I never mind a trip
up to Boone and stopping in Blowing Rock on the way. It was so much colder up there.
Evan will freeze this winter!
AND Jan Karon's new book came out. I couldn't resist it at Barnes and Noble on Saturday! Father Tim returns to his childhood town. Check out Jan Karon's new website:
Thursday, November 1, 2007
I learned today that Martin Luther's 95 theses were posted to
start an academic discussion. He had no idea that
God would use those statements against indulgences to reform the church. I bought a book about Luther's hymns at the Film Conference this past weekend in Franklin, Tenn. Luther gave the German people the Bible in vernacular
language and Hymn books
Both gave life to the churches and to the nation of Germany.
The hymn which he composed on his way to Worms,
and which he and his companion
chanted as they entered that city,
is a regular war-song. The old cathedral
trembled when it heard these novel
The very rooks flew from their
nests in the towers. That hymn,
the Marseillaise of the Reformation, has
preserved to this day its potent spell
over German hearts."
Have you thought about a cathedral trembling from hymns!
Luther wrote in his first preface to the hymnal:
These songs have been set in four parts, for no other
reason than because I wished to provide our young people
both will and ought to be instructed in music and other
sciences) with something whereby they might rid
amorous and carnal songs, and in their stead learn
wholesome, and so apply themselves to what is good with
pleasure, as becometh the young.
AND a taste of some of the theses:
Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.
In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
1. Our Lord and Master Jesus Christ, when He said Poenitentiam agite, willed that the whole life of believers should be repentance.
66. The treasures of the indulgences are nets with which they now fish for the riches of men.
94. Christians are to be exhorted that they be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, deaths, and hell;
95. And thus be confident of entering into heaven rather through many tribulations, than through the assurance of peace.
We were reminded of one of our favorite's:
Tasha Tudor's Pumpkin Moonshine. I read it to all of my children at this time of the year. It was her very first book to be published in 1938 as a gift for her niece. A friend had a BYOP Party ~~ bring your own pumpkin to carve! She reminded us of the book. We still love to read this wonderful tale!
"Sylvie Ann was visiting her Grandmummy in Connecticut. It was Halloween and Sylvie wanted to make a Pumpkin Moonshine , so she put on her bonnet and started out for the cornfield to find the very finest and largest pumpkin.
The cornfield was on top of the hill, quite a way from the house, so Sylvie took Wiggy for company. The hill was very steep, it made Sylvie and Wiggy puff like steam engines."
That is my favorite part to read out loud and PUFF like steam engines!
The pumpkin runs away down the hill! "It leapt over stones and bushes! Bumpity, Bump, bump!"
I think we'll read it out loud. It will bring back memories of having little boys puff like steam engines! Now I just puff from getting older!
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Tut, Tut , It Looks Like Rain
My children always said this from Winnie the Pooh when it rained.
We marvelled today, almost forgetting what rain is like.
God answered prayers! It's steady and good.
He thought for a moment and said: "I shall try to look like a small black cloud. That will deceive them." ..........
What do I look like?"
"You look like a Bear holding on to a balloon," you said.
"Not," said Pooh anxiously, "--not like a small black cloud in a blue sky?"
Well, now, if you walk up and down with your umbrella, saying, 'Tut-tut, it looks like rain,' I shall do what I can by singing a little Cloud Song, such as a cloud might sing. . . . Go!"
So, while you walked up and down and wondered if it would rain, Winnie-the-Pooh sang this song:
How sweet to be a Cloud
Floating in the Blue!
Rain Storm, Union Square, 1890, Museum of the City of New York.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS!! We have RAIN!! Not a downpour but enough
to get wet!
Look What came in the Mail Today
The Back Door Mail on Saturday
Monday, October 22, 2007
Light for the piano
Emma and I saw a piano on Saturday at an Open House of a historical Victorian
house in Matthews. It had candle holders on it like this:
You never know how something is connected to something else. Never think what you are looking at is for nothing. Tonight we read this in Little Women, when Beth gets a piano from Mr. Laurence:
"See the cunning brackets to hold candles, and the nice green silk , puckered up , with a gold rose in the middle, and the pretty rack and stool, all complete," added Meg , opening the instrument and displaying its beauties.
We had just seen one on Saturday! Our eyes sparkled and Emma said "OH ~~!" as we read it. I said on Saturday that I wondered why the Jane Austen movies didn't have these kind of "lighted pianos" but here we know that the Alcott's had one!
Sunday, October 21, 2007
IN the Midst of a Drought
I saw these driving to a friend's house on Friday:
Angel Trumpets ! What a glorious name for this tall bush. The flowers dangle down
and I think of a trumpeter holding his instrument on his knee when I see them! I got a cutting!
From A Solemn Music by John Milton ( 1633-1634)
That undisturbed Song of pure concent,
Ay sung before that saphire-colour'd throne
To Him that sits thereon
With Saintly shout and solemn Jubilee,
Where the bright Seraphim in burning row
Their loud up-lifted Angel trumpets blow,
And the Cherubic host in thousand choirs
Touch their immortal Harps of golden wires,
With those just Spirits that wear victorious Palms,
Hymns devout and holy Psalms
Saturday, October 20, 2007
A Back Door Letter
While I was on the phone out on the back deck, Emma sat right at the table and
wrote me a letter! She put it in a decoration we have that is by the door and can
hold flowers or a letter. She addressed it to:
She is giving one of these to a very good friend and neighbor for a birthday present so they can send letters without the post like in Little Women!
THAT just sent me on a search for Little Women's Letters. Here's a link where you can open the book and the computer flips the page for you! Now that is progress for out of print books and so much easier to read!
A quick, bright smile went round like a streak of sunshine. Beth clapped her hands, regardless of the biscuit she held, and Jo tossed up her napkin, crying, "A letter! A letter! Three cheers for Father!"
"Yes, a nice long letter. He is well, and thinks he shall get through the cold season better than we feared. He sends all sorts of loving wishes for Christmas, and an especial message to you girls," said Mrs. March, patting her pocket as if she had got a treasure there.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Red Letter Day
Thanks so much for all the letters. Receiving one can truly improve the overall quality of a day.
Emma and I each received a letter today from Evan, son-brother- freshman in college. He wrote the above quote about our letters! We got SO excited to get two letters and we giggled at
his page notes to us! Hope you have some RED Letter Days soon. Mine also included the new Victoria Magazine!
A red letter day (sometimes hyphenated as red-letter day) is any day of special significance.
This comes from the practise of marking the dates of church festivals on calendars in red.
The first explicit reference to the term in print that we have comes from America. This is a simple use of the term "Red letter day" in the diary of Sarah Knight - The journals of Madam Knight, and Rev. Mr. Buckingham ... written in 1704 & 1710, which was published in American Speech in 1940.
The practice is much earlier than that though. William Caxton, referred to it in The boke of Eneydos, translated and printed in 1490:
"We wryte yet in oure kalenders the hyghe festes wyth rede lettres of coloure of purpre."
The term came into wider use in 1549 when the first Book of Common Prayer included a calendar with holy days marked in red ink. For example, Annunciation (Lady Day), 25th March, was designated in the book as a red-letter day.
The term is sometimes written without the hyphen - 'red letter day'.
DID you catch Rev. Mr. Buckingham!
hmmm.........wonder if there's a relation?!
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Sprinkled with Fairy Dust
We're back from the SCHOOL DAY at the Renaissance Festival~~ packed with loads of bused children from all over the state! It was quite warm , but as we left we heard a double wooden pipe of a fairy sending us notes of farewell and then at the gate was another one to sprinkle checks with dust! We found a lost little girl on the way to the car , out in the huge farm's field. I left her with the head Security Guard to get her to her bus and said to her : The Lord will take care of you! The guard smiled at me!
Cecily M. Barker , the fairy illustrator , has a wonderful site:
"Tread lightly there might be a fairy afoot!"
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
The prayers of a righteous man availeth much!
Yesterday ended with a voice mail for a job offer while that son was taking his tax code exam! He went in with a countenance of despair and walked out to see God magnify His power ! God will never leave us nor forsake us is true~ we always need a story to believe that deep down! Here is his!
In what looks like all is going well from the outside to everyone else, this son in Graduate School and had interviews through the Career Center started to crumble under the stress of performance. He's 6'5", loves the Lord ( but not yesterday!) and the prayers of dear friends availeth much! What is amazing to me is God's answer came in the middle of the hard exam! He pulled him out of the miry clay and set him on a Rock!
Rembrandt ~~ Apostle Paul, 1657
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
Monday, October 15, 2007
My life verse is Hebrews 13:5 ~~ I will never leave you nor forsake you.
I needed to know that today. Wescott, Amy Carmichael says in Edges of His Ways,
interprets this verse as " I will in no wise desert you or leave you alone in the field of contest, or in a position of suffering , I will in no wise let go~~loose hold ~~my sustaning grasp." Fuel for prayer now for one of my children.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
For the Men in My Life......
"If you observe a really happy man you will find him building a boat, writing a symphony,
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
We remembered that Meg is 17, Jo is 16, Beth is 13 and Amy is 12 in today's reading
on Burdens. Jo is reading to Aunt March everyday to help the family.
"Jo's ambition was to something very splendid; what it was she had no idea as yet, but left for time to tell her....."
Emma burst out, " She's going to write a book!"
The Wisdom of Little Women
Little Women was first published in October 1868. Louisa's publisher, Mr. Niles, had urged her to write a book for girls. She wrote:
“I plod away, through I don't enjoy this sort of thing. Never liked girls, or knew many, except my sisters, but our queer plays and experiences may prove interesting, though I doubt it. ... Sent twelve chapters to Mr. N. He thought it dull; so do I. But I work away and mean to try the experiment; for lively, simple books are very much needed for girls, and perhaps I can supply the need.”
~Journals of Louisa May Alcott, 1868
Seventeen years later, Louisa was able to write:
“The copyright made her fortune, and the “dull book” was the first golden egg of the ugly duckling.”
She beat me!
In Scrabble! "With a little help from her friend" ( MOM)
Emma is 10 and Gordan at 11 ( 5 years ago) could beat me. I don't let them, really!
It helped with some grumpiness this morning in getting schoolwork done to say "Let's play Scrabble when we finish this work" We sat outside listening to two crows make strange calls to each other before flying off. She and I could read all day if we had our way! Wish I had had this kind of education. She had 208 and I had 168.
Evan comes home today for Fall Break. It's still dry and warm. The house will fill up again. It will be good to have eye contact instead of voice contact or emails or letters. He got that comparision paper on Letters vs Emails. Surely he was the only freshman who choose those to compare! His older brothers have all visited him since he's in the mountains. Warms my heart. Their break is over and his starts. That's the way life is at times, isn't it.
Monday, October 8, 2007
On Another note
My husband played a Press Agent in the movie "Leatherheads" for 8 days while
George Clooney was in town in April. It was to be released on December 7th, but
now is postponed to April! One year to wait to see if he was cut in any scenes or
is part of the opening scene in the football stadium. What a thrill for all of us and now
we have to wait.
Friday, October 5, 2007
Finishing is a theme
The kids finished the second coverlet for the orpanage in Haiti today ~~ love knots!
They did a work of art with their hands, worked together and did some missions work!
All at the age of 9 and 10! It felt so good to be "fait complis!" Almost done with our artist Jamie Wyeth , not Carl Larsson. He'll be in the picture one day!
Glad it's Friday since I thought yesterday was Friday! A bit of rain yesterday which was an answer to prayer. We need more Lord!
Thursday, October 4, 2007
Emma finished The Two Towers this afternoon!
She's watching the movie and I love her : " It's so different than the book!"
The trees are moving and alive! Shades of the new heavens and new earth!
That's my favorite scene in that book!
'One felt as if there was an enormous well behind them, filled up with ages of memory and long, slow, steady thinking; but their surface was sparkling with the present: like sun shimmering on the outer leaves of a vast tree, or the ripples of a very deep lake.'"
Pippin describing Fangorn's eyes, The Two Towers (1954), Treebeard