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

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My Favorite Things

I've written about my church pew before, one of my favorite things.  There are certain areas, like my mantle, the marble top table, and the pew that I love to tweak on and change around for the seasons.   Click on any of the pics to see a larger view, if you like. 

I've had my eye on those two botanical prints. I fell in love with their delicate colors, as well as the unusual wicker frames. When I saw they were marked down to $11, I pounced.
Among our favorite family movies is The Sound of Music.  My sister, Kerry, holds the current family record of having viewed it 9,724 times along with every episode of Little House on the Prairie 10 times.  This is why she knew that the actor Patrick Laborteaux who played "Bud" on JAG was also "Andy Garvey" on Little House when he was a child.  You can see why I depend upon her for these things. But I digress. 

Sometimes I really like the texture of simple things, which is why I loved the balls of string in the bowl.  The Lenox bowl was a housewarming present from my cousin Marianne, who is actually more like a beloved auntie.  I use the bowl constantly.

I've been crazy lately for this font called "Veteran Typewriter."  Along with my obsession with naming things with Scrabble tiles, I also like to make old-timey looking labels printed on card stock using that font.  It is available on line free, just Google the name and download it.  Thus, the bowl has been labeled "brown paper packages tied up with string" part of the lyrics of  "My Favorite Things" which Julie Andrews sang in the movie. 

Just a glimpse into the strange workings of my mind.  Yes, I know, it scares me too, sometimes.  Oh the prints?  From Walmart.  And, no, I don't mind one bit if you want to run out and buy them, too.

Be Still

Good morning from sunny Virginia, where if you didn't like the weather yesterday (78 degrees), you may like it better 8 hours later at 38 degrees.  Just sayin'. 

That's why I woke up this morning unaccountably quite cold.  I flung open all the windows last night because I love the fresh air, but didn't check the weather report for today.  Not checking the weather is one of those cheap thrills I like to give myself, demonstrating my devil-may-care attitude about how many pills are left in the bottle, how far below half my gas gauge displays, and where my keys are at any given time.  I live life on the ragged edge.

So as I woke up this morning and pulled my blanket off Lulu (she had a fur coat) and on to my icy feet, I looked up to the Bible verse that has been over my front bedrooom windows for several years now.

"Be still and know that I am God," Psalm 46:10.  I don't know about you, but I have a terribly hard time being still.  I want to be running, going, jumping, and doing.  I want to tweak a vignette, call a friend, paint something, cook a new enchilada recipe, go to Starbucks or find something cool at Goodwill.  I need to use Murphy's Oil Soap on the hardwood floors, read for my graduate school class, and hang a load of wash on the line.  Being still is a hard thing for me, as is keeping my mouth shut.

My wonderful friend, Terry and I have been doing something new with Bible study.  It was Terry's idea.  We are not studying anyone else's thoughts (like Beth Moore or Kay Arthur, as fabulous as they are), but are instead going through shorter passages of the Word and looking up key words and phrases.  This technique has really been opening our eyes, even though we know the basic definitions of the dictionary words.  The practice illuminates many shades of meaning to what we read, especially in familiar passages.

I go to, where today's Word of the Day is "masticate" in case you were wondering.  To me, "masticate" sounds far less appealing than what you do with a mouthful of birthday cake.  In any case, these are the definintions for still.  That is "still" the adjective, not the "still" that moonshiners use.

1. remaining in place or at rest; motionless; stationary
2. free from sound or noise, as a place or persons; silent
3. subdued or low in sound; hushed: a still, small voice.
4. free from turbulence or commotion; peaceful; tranquil; calm
5. without waves or perceptible current

Oh, if I could only learn to remain at rest, to be free from noise, to be hushed with a still, small voice, and without commotion!  God doesn't call us to anything which isn't possible, so if He says, "Be still," it isn't really a suggestion or an impossibility. 

I had been particularly busy and frenetic of late, doing my best impression of the Biblical Martha (Jesus said, Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things).  God can use everything in your life, though.  He has used health circumstances to bring me to an "all stop."  The most recent thing has been pneumonia.  I've been sicker than I've been in years.  But, it hasn't been a bad thing at all.  I've had to get still, slow down, and revaluate.  I'm thankful for a military heath care system that had me in a bed getting treated three minutes after I arrived.  I'm thankful for free prescriptions and effective medication.  And I'm thankful for the chance to be still and figure out what God wants me to do next. 

Just before I go, I want to share with you the other thing in my line of vision when I wake up, because no posting from me is complete without a vintage thing. My grandmother, Helen got me started on a love of tea, teapots, and tea cups.  These are on the bureau in the bedroom.  They look vintage, but both are newer.  I picked them up very cheaply at Goodwill. The plates are old and were purchased for under a dollar.  That's what I love about the cottage-y, shabby chic look. It doens't have to be expensive.