Eclectic, quirky, and sometimes edgy…this is how things look from my front porch.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bird, Bird, Bird...a variation on Duck, Duck, Goose

For some reason, and I can't explain why, this pic struck me as very "Daisy Cottage Kim."  These aren't her colors, but when I think back to my decor about five years ago, I can see her esthetic, her influence, all over the house.

Wreath in the Cowboy Bathroom

Friday, January 14, 2011


White is not a mere absence of color; it is a shining and affirmative thing, as fierce as red, as definite as black. God paints in many colors; but He never paints so gorgeously, I had almost said so gaudily, as when He paints in white.  G.K. Chesterton

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Good Old Days?

Sometimes this world is so ugly that I find it difficult to live in it. This weekend is one of those times. As a result, I have the tendency to romanticize earlier times as the “good old days.” I have often expressed the wish that I had been born several generations earlier.

But were things so good in years past? Were things good in the 1960’s? Well, maybe, if you didn’t think about the assassination of our President, his brother, and Dr. King. Things were good unless it was your son or daughter who was dropping acid or addicted to heroin. Times were okay if you could overlook Russian nuclear weapons trained on our nation from Cuba, 90 miles away. Things were good unless you lived in East Germany and wanted to escape to freedom over the Wall. Things were so insecure that we were encouraged to build fall out shelters in our back yards.

Were things good in the 1950’s? Well, I suppose they were unless you were African American and wanted to vote in the South or were a woman who wanted to be a physician. Things were good unless you were an abused child or spouse and couldn’t get help. The world was shiny and bright unless you were a rape victim who was made to feel shame instead of receiving justice. Things were terrific, all backyard bbq’s and Leave it to Beaver, unless you were wounded in the Korean War. Those warriors were largely ignored when they returned home and had almost no veteran’s services.

How about the 1930’s and 1940’s? I love aprons and cookbooks from way back then.  I scout out the lamps and furniture from this period at vintage stores. However, the world was facing the rise of a maniacal dictator, a world war, and the killing of millions simply because they were God’s chosen people.  

What about the1920’s? Wellllllll, promiscuity was rampant and Prohibition was giving birth to organized crime. We had just lost millions of men in World War I. The Roaring Twenties were okay unless you were one of the poor Jewish and Italian immigrant women who perished in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City because the owners locked you in from the outside. This was a prosperous era unless you were taken advantage of by an unscrupulous Wall Street trader who encouraged investing on margin. Sound familiar?

Well maybe it was better in the romantic South where women who glowed and fanned themselves sipped iced tea on the verandah in beautiful white hoop skirts? Sure, those were the good old days unless you were among those individuals who thought it was okay with God to own other human beings…or you actually were one of those who were owned.

The “good old days” were only totally good in retrospect. We have faced violence, inhumanity, greed, prejudice, disease, immorality, fear, political infighting,hate speech, and uncertainty in every generation.

What is our only constant? God. “Rock of Ages, cleft for me. Let me hide myself in Thee.”

Fear not, Jesus said. For I am with you always, even unto the end of the age.

And I say, be it.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


Jesus wept.     
John 11:35

Saturday, January 8, 2011


You know that room in your house.  C'mon, you know the one, the junk room. The room where you throw the books that you keep forgetting to take to the library sale and the clothes you meant to take to the attic when it got hot. The place where you shove stuff you don’t want to keep but can’t commit to throw away.

I had a room like that. My house started out as a
one family home. During World War II, it was made into two apartments, as many homes were in this military area. Another owner consolidated it into one house once again. The room I am describing is entered through pocket doors from the master bedroom. It was originally a nursery. It was a kitchen in the apartment era. An owner in the seventies turned it into a huge closet, with one wall of clothing rods top and bottom and built-in cedar lined bench storage units. Think very beige and lot of seventies track lighting. I loved the storage space, hated the room itself.

When I couldn’t stand it one minute longer, I removed the nasty wall to wall carpeting, painted the floor with high gloss enamel and turned it into a study/dressing area. I was stumped for a week on how to hide the clothes for cheap, cheap, cheap. Finally, I hung PVC piping from chrome chains anchored in the ceiling. The sheets are Mainstay twin sheets from Walmart, I just cut open the top hem and hung them. $4 per pair.

Almost everything else in the room I either had already, bought at Goodwill, or rescued from the curbside as follows:
Desk – my Papa made it for me
Dresser – Goodwill
Blue and red wicker storage bins – on sale Michaels
Globe – thrift store
Red Table – rescued from the curbside and painted.
Blue chair – belonged to my 3rd great grandfather who fought in the Civil War
Window seat stuff – Goodwill
Sailboat painting - Goodwill
Decorative items on open shelving - Goodwill
Decorative plates - Goodwill

FOOD: Wherein I post about a special dish; special because of convenience, taste, price or all three.

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.  ~Luciano Pavarotti

I like to keep a package or two of frozen creamed spinach (in the boil-in bag) in the freezer.  It goes on sale from time to time.  I don't use a great deal of convenience food, but the calorie and fat count on frozen creamed spinach isn't too bad.   

Last night, I had an hour and a half to fold two loads of laundry, put in another bunch of dirty clothes, feed the dogs, make dinner, research how to make a headboard out of an old door, and get ready for Bible study.  Here's what I threw together for dinner.  The prep time took five minutes.  I used the cooking time to take care of all the other tasks.

Chicken Florentine For a Busy Night

4 boneless chicken breasts
1/2 t nutmeg
1/2 fresh ground pepper
1/2 t red pepper flakes
1 pkg frozen creamed spinach
Parmesan cheese

Brown the chicken breasts on each side. Mix spinach and spices. spread a small amount of creamed spinach on the bottom of an oven proof casserole with a lid. Place chicken in the casserole. Put creamed spinach mixture on top.  Bake with the lid on at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.   Serve with parmesan cheese on top.

I served the chicken with frozen mixed veggies and a baked yam to rave reviews.  I sliced the chicken up into bite-sized pieces, but you don't have to. 

I always have baked yams cooked ahead.  I bake 6 at a time and use them for lunch or for a side with dinner.

Friday, January 7, 2011

American Four Square in the Snow

He spreads the snow like wool and scatters the frost like ashes.  Psalm 147:16.