Praying For...Sammy that she will gain a close relationship with Jesus Christ and learn the joy found in feasting upon the Word...that she and other children around the world will be blessed with freedom from evil influences, hunger, and danger during childhood...that leaders of nations will soften their hearts and embrace peace.
Ponderizations..."Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour," 1 Peter 5:8. It is so easy to slip away from the straight and narrow and fall into sin.
Yorkie Yarns...traveling up for tax season, Dash was a champ...except in the hotel...every time someone walked by the room, she barked like one possessed of a demon. Although I don't sleep with animals as a rule, I put the leash on her and brought her to bed. This settled her down so we could all sleep. She loves the cottage and park here.
Teaching Little Children...I miss my little friends very much. Maybe I can find a place to volunteer here.
I Write...I finally figured out a problem for the new book I'm writing. Because I'm the optimistic type and love my characters as if they were real, I have a terrible time giving them problems. Painting a picture of the characters and setting is no problem. I love researching each little piece to the puzzle, which always has something to do with teaching children, planting a garden, and raising dogs in some exotic location.
Cucina Fresca...you've heard of i-pads and i-phones, but I bet i-pots boggle a bit. Since this place only has a hot plate, I decided to try out the instant pot: rice cooker, slow cooker, pressure cooker, saute pan, yogurt maker, warmer, and steamer. Apparently, it will cook dry pintos in 30 minutes or soaked ones in 10. There will be no more scrambling to come up with dinner when the pintos are still hard in the slow cooker. I can't wait to steam some fat-free, plant-perfect, blue corn calabacitas y frijoles negros tamales, mmmm.
Bibliophilia...sent Sammy Blue Willow by Doris Gates, a Newbery honor book. Since I haven't read it yet, a used copy is coming here, too. I also got her and some of the other grands Scripture Power! Book of Mormon Journal for Children by Elizabeth Dorathy. It's a great journal that I tried out last fall. Although it is a bit too juvenile for me, it had some thought provoking questions. It will be great for Sammy, Cole, Gayle, and Oakley if they choose to utilize it. I hope to be some sort of example for good with my grands, which is why I send them letters, great literature, art books, science kits, and now scripture journals.
Sound of Music...I also sent Sammy the first DVDs in the Piano for Life series by Mark Almond. It's a great way to learn to play the piano, because they gain an understanding of the basic structures of harmony before learning to read music. With traditional (and very expensive methods), many people give up out of exasperation and frustration. With Mark Almond's method, people can play beautiful music and improvisation on their journey to reading music. No more Hot Cross Buns for months on end. Two of my children learned the harmony method intuitively. In fact it was hard to get S to focus on his lesson material each week as he improvised chord structure to Nintendo tunes. I enjoyed the method immensely until access to a piano stopped. Finally, my arthritis pain is gone, which will allow me to play my uke again. However, the frozen shoulder prevents violin at all. It seems every time I pick up my violin, something forces me to lay it down again. Maybe, that pastime will need to remain a lovely memory.
Needle News...I have come up with a design for a new crossover bag. I bought one that is almost right, but now I know exactly what I want. Also, the skirt I'm working on is almost perfect. I have a cheap skirt from Walmart with a great fit. I'm using it as the basic pattern but adding a front kick pleat instead of the back slit--plus I might put in a couple, concealed, zipper pockets. Sewing by hand is slow process but more rewarding.
Movement...the park a couple doors down is right on the river. It's a nice walk but only feels safe in the afternoons, when it's filled with mothers and their small children. I'm such a scaredy cat. There is another park the other direction with a dog park. I haven't tried that one, since I didn't have a dog last year. Essentrics is still a wonder for me. Each hour I like to take ten minute stretch breaks, which I plan to use to reintroduce yoga poses alternating with outdoor mini walks. I'm also going to incorporate Dr. Kim's shoulder exercises, as his foam rolling completely healed my back and hip pain. Frozen shoulder is a bear.
Cottage Life...I have the best of both worlds. Up here I live in a tiny house and down home my home is spacious. Cottage living forces one to focus on needs vs wants. As I select items to include in a 350 square foot life, I focus on quality over quantity. It's quite refreshing.