Tuesday, November 19, 2013


Julie's mantle, decorated with Grandma's candlesticks, and bittersweet from the woods out back.
I found this bittersweet vine in the woody area back of Julie's yard.  I love it, and I cut it and brought it in and placed it all over the place, around pumpkins, in vases, on the mantle!
 But then I got concerned when I did my research, because there is Oriental Bittersweet, which is invasive and kills trees, a real nuisance according to the FDA, "a prohibited  noxious weed.that should be eradicated!
 Then there is American Bittersweet, which is endangered!  But they are hybridizing, and they are hard to tell apart!
 I hope I have the good kind!  I love decorating with natural things I find right outdoors. But I don't want to spread it, so I must bag it up when I dispose of it, since composting it will spread the seeds.
 Bittersweet-  to think that something so lovely may be a problem.

"Life at best is bittersweet"  Jack Kirby

American Bittersweet,  Celastrus Scandens  or is it Oriental Bittersweet, Celastrus Obiculatus

See how huge the vines are?
 They strangle the trees and make them top-heavy and susceptible to wind damage.
Most of it was really up high and I wondered how I could get it, then I found a low bush full of it.

Bittersweet- how the days come and go so quickly,
 new day so full of hope, but yesterday's sadly gone.

"Every day is a fresh beginning 
Every morn is the world made new."
Sarah Chauncey Woolsey

Grandson Gary having a cuppa,  as he walks to his schoolbus.
Little Tommy calls his big cousin "Superman" ! 
 I guess he is!   He gets all A's, works at Burger King,
 and  was just inducted into the National Honor Society.  
 I love seeing Gary off to school.It's so early, and being a teenager,
he sometimes doesn't respond to me fussing over him,
  but I know he still needs a little kindness and encouragement.
I don't hover,  I just say, " I love you! Have a great day, Gary!"
 Ya know, it is bittersweet seeing him grow up and realizing his childhood is nearly over,
being scared for him going out into this  dangerous, troubled world,
 but it's also wonderful to see him growing into a strong and  independent young man.
 and  it's a joy watching him plan his bright future. 

 yes, I'm a copycat!   Acorns!
 I got silly and painted some acorns because I saw them on Rhoda's  beautiful blog post.
Then I  found a legend of Lucky Acorns in a  Victorian Trading Company catalog
 and  hand-printed it to display with my acorns.
Lucky Acorns
".......believed to attract the opposite gender, increase income, etc.....
attributed for soul immortality and longevity, youthfulness,fertility and good health"
 I am not superstitious at all, but just find this folklore fun and fascinating.

More playfulness!   I made play dough for Thomas, something I've wanted
 to do for a long time. I got the recipe online.
There are many versions, this is a composite, and it turned out great!

 1/2 cup salt
2 Tbsp. Cream of Tartar
1 1/2 cups water
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
Combine in  saucepan and heat until warm.
Stir in 2 cups flour
 Then mix well and knead until smooth. 

 Separate into small balls of dough, for
as many colors as you want, and add a
few drops food color then knead some more.

This is non-toxic, completely safe and keeps for 60 days.
Store in sealed containers or bags.

 I couldn't find the food color at my daughter's house,
so I used my acrylic craft  paint and got really vivid colors. 
 It was not too messy and Tommy really enjoyed it. 
I had a nice marble counter top to knead it on, 
and before I told him,  he knew it was for him to play with. 

Cheap fun!  Playing together enriches our lives I think he is learning something too,
when he tries to make things.
 It's good working with his hands and using his imagination, learning shapes and colors.

"When we treat children's play as seriously as it deserves,
 we are helping them feel the joy that's to be found in the
 creative spirit.   It's the things we play with and the people 
who help us play that make a difference in our lives."
                                                                       --Fred Rogers

     Don't be afraid of messes, 
    just have fun with your Grandbabies,
      they grow up so fast!   

Love, Linda



Friday, November 8, 2013

Hope for America - the only way!

Just can't get this costume off this little boy.  My little grandboy just loves dressing up as Batman!
He's my superhero and some days he says I can be Cat Girl, but I want to be Wonder Woman!

I sure enjoy his company!  Today when I was working on the computer, he climbed up in my lap and asked for "baby songs"  I am delighted to hear him sing, and we watched some children's Sunday School songs and videos.
 I just put Sunday School Songs Maranatha on You-tube, and there are plenty to watch.  Lots of cute songs with gestures and dances.  Hopefully he'll get a little bit of positive "faith education" from this fun music experience

I love spending time at my daughter's!  Am I "living vicariously" ?  Maybe!
Julie bought this lovely wrought iron shelving unit at Hobby Lobby.
 One more section is on order.
I have all sorts of plants to share with her!
She doesn't know that I've been rooting and repotting some houseplants
just for when she would purchase this etegere!

My grandmom's favorite plants were African Violets.

 Later,I went next door and watched a special
uninterrupted broadcast on TV with Doris.
 We had anticipated it for weeks.
 It was a tribute to Billy Graham, on his 95th  birthday!

Billy Graham's photo in the Decision Magazine,  publication of the Billy Graham Ministry

Follow on Facebook,    Facebook.com/Decisionmagazine

He is still preaching the same message of hope,
that if you come to Jesus by repentance and faith, he will  forgive you,
change your life and heart,and  give you everlasting life.
  I was so excited to watch this  very special  program,
 My Hope America on Fox News, with my  wonderful neighbor.
  What an honor, this  very special  tribute to this wise, beloved man!
  I  so enjoyed the  chance to see him preaching one more time.
This famous evangelist  usually speaks in stadiums, and at 16,
with a youth group,   I went to see him in 1970, in New York City.
 His son Franklin said, " He  has a message he wants to share",
  and because he is  frail, he recorded this program in  his log cabin home,
  in North Carolina.

 He is the "most trusted man in America".
 Billy said  he wants to tell people about the meaning of the cross,
that we have to talk about the cross,which makes people uncomfortable,
because it confronts people, but this is a confrontation we must face.
 It is the only way to eternal life, to salvation.
 He said  that our country is in great need of a spiritual awakening,
 the world is in such terrible danger, and the only answer is through Christ Jesus.
 He declared that "sin is a disease in the human and it affects the will, the mind, emotions,
every part of our being.  The way  of the cross will demand a new life style,
break the bonds and make us new creatures."
 More information, www.FindingMyHope.org       call  877-772-4559

He was followed by a panel  discussion.
 Dr. James Dobson, founder of Family Talk, said,
 "He hasn't changed the message one bit, he always emphasized forgiveness,
 and gets straight to the cross."
Lauren Green said his message has been about hope, a fundamental need of everyone.,
and his grandson Tullihan Tchividjian, also a preacher,  said his grandfather
 is a most humble man who  has always lived his faith.

I wanted to share this with you, because there is nothing more important to write about!
 My grandchildren are my reason for taking all this so seriously!
 They're the reason!   I want to give them this hope.
I'm very concerned about their future,  and America's future!

Thank you Billy Graham for your message of  Hope for each of us!
 Thank you for praying for all of us, for America!  

Won't you pray with me and Billy?  
  Love, Linda