Wednesday, December 31, 2008


New Year’s is my favorite holiday, I think. Not the customs of day – though I like cabbage and Hoppin’ John just fine – but the sense of new beginnings.

Get up and start over with a whole new clean slate! Of course my Lord makes that possible every morning – still, the first day of a new year adds a bit of flourish; a fresh, bright awareness of the reality to the truth of it!

A time for reflection, resolution and anticipation! Reflections equal thanksgiving – there are many things in the last year that deserve remembering with gratitude. Resolutions – even the recycled ones offer hope. I can always do better. Anticipation – Providence lies ahead on those empty calendar sheets; supplied, hour by hour according to His Grace.

Will every day be sunny? Certainly not! Will all my dreams come true? Perhaps I should hope not! Will all my prayers be answered? Most surely – according to His will!

I’ve not yet seen 2009, but I’ve been here before. The threshold of faith – stepping in His footprints, holding to His Hand, bowing to His wisdom and trusting for all my tomorrows that His love will guide me safely on.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008



Keep the home fires burning,
Light a candle, cut some pine;
Keep the family traditions
That will warm your heart and mine
With the links to dear reflection
From the mirrors of the past -
All the tender recollections
Child to aged ... first to last.

Be it turkey, ham or taffy,
Apple pie or chocolate cake,
Popcorn strings or men of ginger,
Sugar plums that visions make -
Strike the chord of magic mem'ry
Play the fife and beat the drums
That resound in halls of kinship
And rekindle thoughts of home.

Home - where love is warm and gentle
Home - where happiness abounds,
Where bright blooms of faith and mercy
Spread their fragrance all around;
Where the tears and hopes and laughter
Of a lifetime tightly weave
A rich tapestry of sharing -
Ours to give and to receive.

Home fires burn in radiant beauty
In the joy that children see
Beaming from the smiles of parents,
Or in hugs on Grandpa's knee.
Home fires blaze in humble settings
For mere wealth could ne'er impart
Throughout time the Gift of Wonder
Like the dear things of the heart.

Ah yes, home is where the heart is;
So we speak, and 'tis so true.
We each hold within our being
Elements of vibrant hue;
Strength is there to draw us forward;
Lights that mark the journey home
Like a beacon shining brightly
To the shores where we belong.

Let us keep the home fires burning
Light our candle, soft and sweet,
Thoughtful of the home eternal
At the blessed Master's feet -
Where the Father waits in glory;
Where the Savior bids us come;
Where the loving, gracious Brother
Leads us to that perfect Home.

Friday, December 19, 2008


Yesterday's miss-measurement and re-assemblage turned out to be pretty ugly. As in beyond redemption ugly. So this morning I decided to toss those patches (into a bag....maybe John can redeem them), and use the rest of the scrap squares to whip up a smaller version. It is, after all, leftovers.

I did NOT square up/pre-trim every square. I did NOT make sure all the seams were pressed in opposite directions. I did NOT even pre-measure the borders (though I did press with a bit of spray starch for a smoother fit). Whack - sew - whack. Yep, in Nines' vernacular, I'm a brat. A 64-year old brat. But since it's a little quilt, don't expect me to own up to being a BIG brat.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Yes, I would think horror of horrors, if anyone thought I would commend the former (though my Grandma Brady rubbed, most of her 90+ years, and credited the practice with preserving all her natural teeth). Aren't expressions funny! Up to snuff ... now what in the world does that mean?

Today, it is STUFF. And my brain obviously isn't up to stuff either, nor was it yesterday. Just piddling here and there and getting nowhere. Pulled out a quilt top that is begging for borders before DGD Hannah takes it back home to quilt herself. Nothing else I pulled out of fabric piles seems to suit, so guess I'll wait on finishing that project. This morning I decided to play with the left overs from that top. The fabrics are nice quality, hence easy to sew. So, I took a try at the odds and ends of strips and squares. When I pieced the left overs I figured the size wrong, and squares weren't square; a spare 1/2 inch in one direction. So I whacked them in two and shuffled them up - maybe by the time I get all these orphans reassembled as half-triangles, it will look like that was my intent all along. Square squares were boring -- that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Holidays suddenly seem more festive with news that one family of children are heading this way next week. I'll need to finish or quit with orphan assemblage by tomorrow, I suppose, but from here Monday seems soon enough to gear my brain up to stuffing the oven and cookie jars.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


A sweet young friend just loves it when fall weather turns cool enough for a hoody. Some of our grandchildren are quite fond of hoods, too ... though we prefer the smaller 'squeaky little star wars ewoks" variety to the dark over-sized evil emperor variety. Hoods to Snoods.

These snoods came about in a quest for "Little Women" musical costuming for Florida college spring drama. DD Laurie lets me help with costuming, time to time, and I enjoy the prospects. The snood pattern downloaded from internet was a short ponytail / bun variety and I've worked at enough modification to make it head sized. The multicolored one will go to granddaughter, not drama; but practice makes better - if not perfect.

We had a lovely one-day stay in Indiana this week. The kind that makes you want to stay and stay. But even retired folks have local obligations of loving sort. DH felt obligated to go hunting when we arrived home and 'caught' a deer in the hour of daylight left. That makes six for the season so far; which we're happy to share.

Company for lunch tomorrow may be served button buck bambi burger in taco soup; with salad and cookies. Obligingly simple hospitality to sweet folks -- a joy any season.