Tuesday, August 11, 2020

August Moments




Our summer heat finally arrived about the middle of July... after a long cool spring and early summer, we had not really seen any temperatures over 80 degrees.  We are so blessed here, in that our nights cool down into the 50s and 60s, and sometimes even 40s.  So we can sleep well at night with our windows open, and then early in the morning, I close all the windows, turn on the fans, and the house stays cool until mid-afternoon, and then by 6:00 or so, we open windows again, and the cool breezes return.  The blooms in the garden have brought me much joy, and I've been busy harvesting the produce that it has been producing... enjoy the short video of a peek around my garden. 



In the evening is when I like to weed, gather produce,
and just enjoy the cool evening air after a heat-filled day
and most always the evening skies are filled with God's best masterpieces to enjoy. 

We've been doing a lot of 4-wheeling on the weekends, 
and we've seen so much beautiful countryside. 


This has been a wonderful summer without the smoky skies that we've had for the past several years, making it easier to get out, and enjoy the mountains. 

We've seen some magnificent vistas on our rides, and it is always so 
much fun to explore new trails. 

Huckleberries are also out now, and they are such a wonderful treat to find. 

It is always refreshing to find waterfalls along the trails, and this one was especially beautiful, cascading into a little pool of water. We happened upon it, on one of the trails we were on. 

A panoramic view of one of the majestic vistas on our ride. 


Some pensive pictures taken of our furry crew recently...

Our summer has been a really lovely one this year.  As I already mentioned, we have had no smoky skies, and we are already into August.  We are just so very thankful for the blue skies each day!  It is hard to believe that the year is more than halfway over, and what a year it has been!  

This amazing rainbow appeared in the skies one evening while I was working in the garden. 
Rainbows always remind me of the Lord's promise,
and they fill the world with such wonder each time they appear. 

I was thinking about change the last few days.  No one this time last year could have believed the changes in our world that we have seen in the past few months.  For so many people, there has been so much difficulty and trauma in their world.  Change no doubt has visited all of our lives, and things that were a way of life for us have changed.  We live in a world that is in a constant state of change... and yet there are things that never change.  Thankfully the sun still rises and sets at the same time every day, and the moon continues through its cycle.  The seasons come and go just as they always do.  

Our Lord's love has not changed for us, neither has His plan for this world.  And while we see things in a constant state of change around us, we can take comfort in the fact that while the world around us may be changing at a pace faster than we can understand or even believe, our Lord still remains steadfast and unchanging. Put your hope in Him, in things that are unmovable, unshakable, and unchanging in the midst of the changing storms and seasons of life.  It seems this season of change and difficulty we are in may last forever, but I can assure you that it will not... because seasons never last forever.  




I am reminded daily to look up beyond the chaos of the world that exists around me, into the loving face of my Saviour, and I see His face imprinted on the skies, the clouds, the mountains, the trees, and in all living things around me.  I take comfort in knowing that His plan has been set into motion before this world began, and the things that are taking place around us, are known to Him.  We can rest assured that all is well, in Him! 

I hope you enjoy the short video below of a visit of a swarm of hummingbirds to my garden while the rainbow was in the skies above.  It was a kiss from heaven to my soul, and I hope it blesses your heart too :) 
 


Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Our Daughter's Wedding ~ Simply Sweet and Full of Joy


Our daughter's wedding was held last week, and we are still enjoying the memories of the special moments that were held throughout the day. 


She was such a beautiful bride with a special glow of love and joy about her. 

They were married in a local wedding chapel called the Hitching Post officiated by a wonderful Christian man who shared wonderful advice and prayed for their life together.  









A cute snapshot of both our kids :) 


We went to the local city park to take pictures where there was a lovely waterfall. 

These pictures were taken while we were looking at the photographer,
so we are not looking directly at the camera, but I still love these pictures :)   

I had to put my sunglasses on for a bit... I am just completely blind in the sun without them!
Do any of you struggle with sunlight like this? 

Ryan, Danielle and our new son Zak

Our sweet children! 


Zak and Danielle with his family


Zak and Danielle with his parents

I love this picture with the two of them looking away from the camera. 




Another family picture

Mother and daughter :) 








The reception was held in a private dining room.  Amazingly, the colors of the chairs in this dining room perfectly matched the colors of her wedding!


Decor was very simple, yet so elegant... fairy lights, fresh flowers, tea lights, burlap and baubles. 










It was such a beautiful day in every way.  It was simple, elegant, and stress-free.  In Idaho, there are no witnesses needed for marriage, so it was just parents and siblings at the wedding in the little chapel.  Friends and family were invited to the reception.  Everything was very special about the entire day, and my heart was full of joy for the two of them to begin their life together in this way.  

A special poem comes to mind 
and I thought would be wonderful to share with you about marriage. 

“The Art Of Marriage”

Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.
A good marriage must be created.
In the art of marriage the little things are the big things…

It is never being too old to hold hands.

It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day.

It is never going to sleep angry.

It is at no time taking the other for granted;
the courtship should not end with the honeymoon,
it should continue through all the years.

It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is standing together facing the world.

It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.

It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude
of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy.

It is speaking words of appreciation
and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.

It is not looking for perfection in each other.
It is cultivating flexibility, patience,
understanding and a sense of humor.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.

It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.

It is finding room for the things of the spirit.
It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal,
dependence is mutual and the obligation is reciprocal.

It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner.

It is discovering what marriage can be, at its best.

– by Wilferd Arlan Peterson



A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; 
as I have loved  you, that ye also love one another  John 13:34 

In essence, the blessing of marriage
is in truly loving your spouse 
as you would want to be loved. 

Our prayer is that Zak and Danielle together would be blessed abundantly in their journey of marriage together.  I spoke to them at the reception to remember that it takes three to complete a marriage, having the Lord in the midst of a marriage is the cementing of the bond that will hold through the ups and downs, troubles and triumphs, sorrows and joys that life will bring.  

In these uncertain times, beginning a life together 
may seem quite intimidating and full of challenges, 
but with the Lord in our midst... 
all will be well, 
in Him. 

Our heart is full and grateful for the new addition of a son to our family. 
I hope you enjoyed the pictures of their special day... many blessings to all! 




























Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Biblical Minimalism Book Review and Giveaway

UPDATE! 

I would like to announce the 2 winners of Cheryl's book "Biblical Minimalism"!  I had initially announced giving away one copy of the book, but decided that I would purchase an extra book to give away myself, and Cheryl will be sending a winner a copy of her book.  My copy purchased will not be signed, but, the copy Cheryl sends out will be.  

So without further ado, here are the winners!

The dear friend who will be a recipient of Cheryl's signed book will be:

Connie who blogs at http://crafty-home-cottage.blogspot.com/ 
will be the blessed winner of Cheryl's signed book. 

    The copy of the book I purchased from Amazon to support my dear friend Cheryl will be: 

Fran! 
Dear Fran... I do not have an email for you, so if you see this message,
please email me with your address, so that I can get the book mailed out to you! 

Many blessings to all of you who commented... I encourage you, if you were not a winner, and would like to own your copy of dear Cheryl's book, reach out to her through her blog, or go to Amazon to purchase your own copy... you will be abundantly blessed! 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A dear friend of mine, Cheryl Smith and I have walked hand-in-hand (virtually) through the journey of publishing a book together.  Several years ago the Lord had laid upon Cheryl's heart the vision of writing this book "Biblical Minimalism".  After writing the book, she laid it aside for a time, as events in her life, some included in the ending of the book were taking center place in her life.  

Last fall, the Lord laid on my heart the vision to write a book, which I have since published "Through Love's Eyes".  After sharing my thoughts with Cheryl about writing my book, she and I together began to work diligently to get our books published.  As we walked together on this journey of faith, covid-19 arrived on the scene, and we realized that both our books would be published in a time when typical avenues of book sales would be shuttered.  However, we persevered and had our books published.  Both of us had just received our own personal copies of our books, and promised to send each other a copy.  Both of us, unknowing to each other, mailed copies of our book to each other... and this is not an exaggeration, but simply confirmation of just how the Lord works in little details... we received each other's published books, both on the same day! How incredible is that!  

I can tell you this powerful book that Cheryl has written has been poured out of a life spent in prayer before the Lord, and the scriptures, experiences, and insights you will find in this book will be life-changing.  

If you have always yearned for that special secret place in the Lord, there are insights in this book that will take you from a life of abundance to a more abundant life in Jesus.  You see, following Jesus doesn't guarantee an easy road through life.  Instead as we look more closely into the life of Jesus, we see a much different picture, and Cheryl paints that picture beautifully for us... and not only shows you what it must have been like to follow Jesus when He walked this earth, but how it can look today.  

Her journey is shared as an example of what walking by faith looks like, but it will not be like your journey... or mine.  Each of us are called by the Lord to walk with Him, but how that looks in each of our lives will be different.  One thing that will be central to all of us though... is that Jesus is Lord of all, of everything in our heart, lives, mind and soul.  Cheryl shares powerful scriptures and testimonies of just how to live that abundant life in Jesus.  





Cheryl Smith is the author of the book “Biblical Minimalism,” the story of her family’s journey from a life of abundance to a more abundant life. She is the author of the blogs Biblical Minimalism, where she writes about minimalism from a Biblical perspective, and Homespun Devotions, where she writes devotionals and conducts “Inner Views.” She loves to spend time with her husband and son in the mountains, sing and play Bluegrass music, and write."   
  • To purchase the book, click HERE

I am giving away a signed copy of Cheryl's book "BIBLICAL MINIMALISM" today to anyone who lives in United States... and all you need to do is leave a comment below letting me know you would like to be entered into the drawing. I will draw the blessed winner next Tuesday, a week from today, July 21 and will update this post with the winner's information.  

Be sure and visit Cheryl where she blogs at Biblical Minimalism, and you can also see excerpts from the book on Amazon... this will be an investment you will not regret! With much love to all! 


Wednesday, July 1, 2020

June's Blooms, Wedding Announcement and Happy Canada Day!

Oh the month of June! 
How glorious it is! 
The blooms begin to unfold, day by day
and each one brings joy and gladness to my heart! 


One evening while working in the garden, this incredible sunset glow filled the skies.  The whole world was bathed in a soft pink glow! It was amazing to see!

My garden beneath the glow of the pink sunset skies. 



Golden wild honeysuckle blooms abundantly in June...
a sweet treat to dine on while walking! 


I captured this lovely scene while walking,
I love the rhododendron blooming in the backdrop of the lovely old red barn.  


I went to visit a dear couple who have been shut in due to the covid.  We sat outside and had tea. It was a special time of fellowship, and there was a sweet presence of the Lord with us. 

Such a sweet time of fellowship we enjoyed with such lovely teacups and tea shared :) 

My newest addition to my chicken family are 9 little ones.  They are already learning to roost! 

Walking at sunset hour... the skies never cease to amaze me! 

The sweetest kind of bouquet... one picked my from yard full of wildflower blooms... one that costs nothing, needs no attending, and I can pick a new bouquet every day!  

I can't stop taking pictures of the gorgeous sunset skies these days! 

My purple alliums bloomed in sweet splendor this year... they are such a delight to grow,
and then I dry the seed heads to enjoy for years to come :) 


I visited a local city park that has many magnificent gardens while I waited for my dear friend and neighbor to have her eye surgery done.  While the gardens still had not reached their peak blooms, there was still so much to love and see! As I walked the gardens, I prayed for my friend, whose eye surgery was of a very delicate and risky nature.  Praise God! She came through with her eyesight intact, and we are more than grateful for that!  The pictures that follow are from that garden adventure...








~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


I drove by the local Catholic church, and they had such magnificent blooms outside
that I had to capture a picture of the scene! 

A closer look... gorgeous blooms! 


We visited a local state park for a BBQ with our daughter's fiancee's family... and this handsome heron kept us entertained as he fished not far from where we picnicked. 

Such a beautiful lake... there is a trail that winds around the entire lake.  It is about a 2-mile walk.  It was a wonderful day for the picnic and hike! 

My son ahead of me crossing the wooden bridge... he had fun making it sway, he's such a tease, knowing his Momma doesn't like moving things, ha! Lots of smiles throughout the day! 

These wild tiger lilies blooming to their heart's content, upside down.  I had to lay down to capture this photo... the things one will do for a fun picture :) 

A view of the lake from the trail across the river from the picnic site. It was such a beautiful day! 

Oh these wild roses! They have bloomed this year in such magnificence like I've never seen before! Hundreds of blooms and their fragrance filled the air with heady rose perfume.  Just incredible! I've never smelled a cultivated rose perfume like these wild roses share. 



My neighbor's horse.... such a sweet girl... and her name is Luna... fits her well doesn't it! 



More sunset skies... and wild roses!  

Two things I can't get enough of...
sunset skies, and the wildly perfumed roses blooming abundantly here! 



And speaking of two's.... well these two have announced their wedding plans!  My husband and I couldn't be more thrilled for our daughter and new son-to-be!  I was given the privilege of taking their engagement photos... they are such a sweet couple together, and it made my heart swell as they asked me to take their photos. 

I wish I could share all the pictures I took of them, as I loved each one of them,
but I'm just going to share a few of my favorites with you :) 


I just love this picture of them, about to embark upon a life together,
such possibilities and joys await!
Thankful that they will walk the road ahead together with the Lord by their side. 

The days ahead are busy ones... good ones! 
Prayers appreciated for everyone to stay safe and well for their upcoming marriage this month :)  

I took this picture this morning of my Canadian and American flags... and wanted to take this opportunity to wish my fellow Canadians a Happy Canada Day! Celebrating Canada Day in my Americanada style with flags and these two little figurines I found at a yard sale... although I doubt my Texan-born husband will ever join this PEI Islander-born in carting chickens around the yard! {smiles} 


I hope you've enjoyed this post... a June catch-up, and looks like July is gearing up to be a busy one too!  We've had below-normal temperatures here, with more than normal rain, so all the cool-loving plants in my garden are thrilled, and the rest are rather sad looking... ha! Tis the joys of gardening, and we are looking forward to some sunshine this weekend.  I will be back soon to share with you another giveaway... so stay tuned!  With much love to all!