Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009 in Review

I started 2009 with a trip to see my colorectal surgeon about the pain in my tummy after the reconnection of my colostomy and here I am at the end of 2009 with the same pain.  Hopefully 2010 will bring healing.  Mark's place of work went through a transformation so great that many people lost their jobs this year.  Now 2010 holds for us a move to Colorado because of those changes.  And my boys went from a small Christian private/home school to a big public high school.  Definitely, 2009 has been a year of challenge for all of us and 2010 looks to be a year of even greater challenge (and adventure).

Whatever is ahead, we know that our Lord goes before us leading us in paths of righteousness.  I am finding for myself, that letting go of what I hold dear and clinging fully on to Him is the only way to survive scary times.

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called...And he went out, not knowing where he was going.  (Hebrews 11:8)

Many things about tomorrow I don't seem to understand; but I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand.  ~Stanphill

Blessed New Year to All!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Winter in California

Tonight's sunset was beautiful here in Southern California.  The bare branches of the trees against the pink tinted clouds and blue sky was absolutely gorgeous.  This is my kind of winter.

My big tree friend is on the left. I am going to miss that tree.
But I will have new tree friends at the house on the hill.

The clouds drift over from the ocean.  I love the damp chilly feeling they bring.

Here is Dusty all tucked in for a long winter's nap.
She likes to hide under blankets, silly kitty.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Been Thinking

We had a very simple Christmas at the Little Blue Cottage.  I baked small batches of goodies and made up little packages for neighbors which the boys handed out on Christmas morning.  Have enjoyed visiting with family the past few days.  Could not help myself from crying at times.  It is very hard to let go of what I have.  The Lord has been speaking to me about it, telling me His grace is sufficient, that He cares for me.  That I need not wallow in the "whys", nor throw a pity party or remain in misery.  What I need to do is accept all of what He wants to do for us.  I need not understand why, I just need to hold on to His hand so He can help me through.  Part of His help is coming through my readers and I am very thankful for your kind words.  You are all a blessing!

I have been thinking of the house on the hill in Colorado wondering how it will feel to live there.  Wondering what it will be like to live in snow and experience spring.  The house is vintage 1960's and I wonder how I will be able to make it homey.  I've also thought of blogging from there and decided to open a new blog leaving this blog as a memory of my Little Blue Cottage.  I have not decided on a title for the new blog yet, although my friend Fairmaiden at Sea Cottage gave me a couple of great choices.  I will be blogging from the Little Blue Cottage till the end of January 2010. Then we will move to temporary housing and wait for our belongings to catch up with us.  I will have internet access while in temporary housing, but the house on the hill does not have internet access.  Definitely the connection will have to be put in fairly quick because Mark needs it for work.

Otherwise, I am having trouble with my tummy.  On our trip to Denver it flared up bad.  It may have been due to stress, PT or both.  When we got home I thought it would let up, because I was home, but it has kept up.  Tomorrow I go to PT in the morning.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Blessed Christmas

Wishing all my readers a Christmas filled
with the Savior's love.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Tell me what you think...

This is the house we are going to rent in Golden, Colorado.

This is the view.

The Lord is blessing me with all this and I am afraid to go.
I want to stay in warm, green California with all the traffic, noise and pollution.

But then there is this verse:

"Do not be afraid, neither be dismayed; for the Lord thy God is with you where ever you go."
Joshua 1:9

Monday, December 21, 2009


We filled out an application for renting a house today.  The house we applied for is down the hill from the 3000 sq. ft. house we looked at on Sunday.  It is a little brick house in excellent condition.  It is owned by a man in the military who is currently overseas.  The only problems with the house are that the one car garage looks too small for our mini van, there is no place for a dining table and the bedrooms are very small.  On top of that there is an apartment building in back of it.  Even so it had a lot of good qualities, plus it was affordable.

We decided the house on the hill was a little too expensive.  Mark called the owner for the 3000 sq. ft. house and  left a message telling him that we have to pass.  A while later we got a call from him and he lowered the price because he really likes us and wants us in the house. Mark and I talked over the pros and cons of each house. That pretty much made me a basket case because there are quirks about both.  We decided that it all boils down to us being afforded an opportunity of a lifetime, to be able to live in a home with a beautiful view.  The house is not perfect, but it is a family home and part of the history of the city of Golden.

I cried hard again today, I am so scared to move.  Tuesday afternoon we fly home to our Little Blue Cottage.  I am thankful that I get to come home for the holidays, but at the same time I am terribly sad.  Thanks to all who have been and are praying for us.  Your prayers are very much appreciated.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sorrow and then Golden

Well, I have decided that this Christmas season we are like the holy family.  Here we are in Colorado looking for a place to settle.  We have been making phone calls, knocking on doors, etc.  We most definitely have had our faith muscles stretched.

Saturday I began crying, hard.  It was a discouraging day trying to find a place to live. I was sad that we sold our house and I began begging and pleading with the Lord to let us stay in California.  Mark came along side and assured me that we are doing God's will and that the Lord is blessing us.  I cried more and finally I wore myself out and went to sleep.  In the morning we had decided to go to Golden, Colorado.  It is a small mountain town not far from Mark's place of work.  A very nice couple invited us to come up and see their home.  We found them on Craig's list which we were told is the best tool to finding rental property in Colorado.  Anyway, the home is old, but very well built by the owner's father and maintained by the owner's mother.  The house has 3000 sq. ft. and sits on top of a hill with a view.  The high school is just down the hill and is a very nice school.  Downtown Golden is quaint, charming and beautiful.  Mark and I agreed, we like Golden and if we have to live in Colorado, we would like to live in Golden.

We have a few more houses to tour on Monday and then we will make a decision.  Please keep us in your prayers, that we will follow the Lord's leading.  Thank you!   P.S.  I found two more pennies today! ;-)

Friday, December 18, 2009


Today we spent the day exploring the west side of the Denver area.  It is cold with snow and ice on the ground in places and the trees are bare and gray (not my cup of tea).  We saw a frozen pond, a deer and Canadian geese which was wonderful.  Our day was full of sunshine and meeting new people.  While out and about we were able to view two rental homes.  The first home was in a desired area, but the home itself was not in good condition.  The second home was in decent condition, but it was a far distance from where Mark will be working.  As I toured the 2nd home I began crying.  I just cannot get into this whole Colorado thing.  I want warm, green California and my Little Blue Cottage.  I want it to feel like Christmas, but being here in Denver doesn't make that happen.

The interesting thing is that at each house I found a penny.  What does this mean?  Well, the Lord and I have an agreement that whenever I find a penny it means He is with me.  So finding these pennies was not a coincidence. Then when we got back to the room a girlfriend called and encouraged me.  So in every way the Lord is sustaining me.  Tomorrow is another day to explore and find a place to live.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Well, here is Denver and I am using Mark's laptop to post.  I have been telling myself that this trip is no biggie because we will come back home, but on the plane I couldn't fool myself.  As the plane lifted up in the air my tears began to flow.  Looking down at the ocean and my lovely California I realized that it is no longer going to be what I call home.  The plane flew over the deserts of California & Arizona.  Then we passed over the red land of Utah into the mountainous land of Colorado.  All the snow and cotton ball clouds looked beautiful.  As we approached Denver I saw the flat plains which looked like pictures I have seen.

While we were up in the air, the young couple that is buying The Little Blue Cottage were showing their parents the house.  I am thankful that I will be able to spend Christmas in California with my extended family before we move.  I am going to need mega strength to accomplish the final separation from my beloved California.  I know that strength has to come from God.  Before I left home a grabbed up my monthly letter from Dr. Charles Stanley and put it in my purse.  Before we boarded the plane I began reading it and soaking up the wonderful words of encouragement.

"Life is full of change.  But if we focus on how different things can be from one day to the next, we may feel insecure and discouraged about the future.  So as you think about all that has happened this past year, I encourage you not to dwell on the ups and downs, the mountains and valleys, or the triumphs and troubles.  Instead consider how God has been absolutely faithful through it all. (Lam. 3:22-24)"

"Hebrews 13:8 tells us, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."  Our Savior remains consistent and steadfast regardless of how uncertain our lives may appear.  Time has no effect on Him, and our circumstances never surprise or confuse Him.  Our heavenly Father is in control of everything that has happened, that is happening, and that ever will happen here on earth."  ~Charles Stanley

Monday, December 14, 2009

Good News!!

We met with our realtor and received good news regarding the appraisal.  We made money!  It is truly the blessing of God.  He has been so good to us!  I feel so undeserving of His great kindness.  I would say that the Lord definitely wants us in Denver, therefore I must obediently go even though my insides feel otherwise.  I am doing everything I need to do to get to Denver, but my flesh is kicking and screaming.  A war is raging inside me.

My house is a mess with clothing, suitcases and Christmas stuff.  We leave in two days for our trip to Denver.  Oh, we found a cool rental house on Craig's List and we are going to check it out while we are over there.  The house is close to where Mark will be working and the local high school is good.  I am sure that the Lord will lead us to the house He has for us.

A Gift

Outdoor Mom at Yaak Adventures, has graciously bestowed me with this blog award.  Thank you so much Outdoor Mom!!  Readers, if you have not visited Outdoor Mom's blog, please do, she is such a blessing!  Her blog is full of encouragement, humor and love.

The rules for accepting this award are to copy and change the answers below to suit you and pass it on. Answers can only be one word! Pass the award to a deserving blogger and alert them they have been awarded.

Here are my answers to these questions:
1. Where is your cell phone? purse
2. Your hair? brown
3. Your mother? fiery
4. Your father? quiet
5. Your favorite food? bread
6. Your dream last night? crazy
7. Your favorite drink? tea
8. Your dream/goal? heaven
9. What room are you in? guest
10. Your hobby? blogging
11. Your fear? widow
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? settled
13. Where were you last night? home
14. Something you aren’t? sinless
15. Muffins? pumpkin
16. Wish list item? health
17. Where did you grow up? California
18. Last thing you did? pack
19. What are you wearing? jeans 
20. Your TV? noisy
21. Your pets? relaxed
22. Your friends? kind
23. Your life? service
24. Your mood? thankful
25. Missing someone? yes
26. Vehicle? van
27. Something you’re not wearing? hat
28. Your favorite store? Target
29. Your favorite color? blue
30. When was the last time you laughed? Today 
31. Last time you cried? yesterday
32. Your best friend? Jesus
33. One place that you go over and over? bathroom
34. One person who emails you regularly?  Facebook
35. Favorite place to eat?  home

I am sincerely grateful to Outdoor Mom for this award *blush*.  However, due to the current constraints on my time I will not be able to pass this on right now.

Emotions Show the Cost

Latest events?  Friday evening we had a very small party for the boys for their birthday.  They each got to invite a close friend for dinner.  A good time was had by all.  Saturday was a rainy day.  On that day we heard from our realtor regarding the inspection.  Things need to be worked out, but basically nothing is going to be completely hashed out until we see the results of the appraisal.  We might get news regarding the results of the appraisal on Monday (12-14).

My little gray kitty named Princess (or Cess for short) is sick.  She has a respiratory disease.  She has been on two courses of antibiotic, but she is still sick.  I am worried that her time is coming.  It has been weighing on me.

Many thanks to those of you who have posted comments of encouragement, I am blessed!  I have been having many strong emotions about our upcoming move.  In the Sunday message God spoke to me about surrender.  Then I realized that obedience to the Lord costs something, that is why I am having feelings about moving.  Faith is taking a step out even when it looks dangerous just because He said to.  I think about our salvation and how much it cost.  Jesus laid down His life for us.  This is love: a willingness to sacrafice (to surrender).  Am I willing to love Him back?

Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.  (Luke 14:27)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Awesome Day

Last night I was so upset that I had trouble going to sleep.  I also was having a tummy pain which did not help. Anyway, I was thinking that there was no way I could stay for the inspection.  I mentioned it to Mark and he said that I did not have to stay if I didn't want to.  That took some pressure off, but I felt the Lord gently nudging me, saying that I would be blessed if I stay for the inspection.  I finally fell asleep and that made a big difference, because in the morning I felt able to be obedient.

Today was amazing!  Our buyers are Christians!  I enjoyed talking to them and they are thrilled with the house.  When we first listed the house I believed that the Lord would bring the right buyer to our house and I am thrilled with how everything is turning out so far.  The Lord is able to do above all that we ask or think.

The other amazing thing is that everyone encourages us about Colorado.  Everytime I tell anyone that we are moving there they perk up and say it is beautiful, you are going to love it, etc.  I am taking it as the Lord's encouragment.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Strong Feelings

Today I went to a luncheon & meeting at Mark's office.  The meeting was about the move to Denver.  I met all the people that are going.  Management was there and everyone asked questions and got answers.  Going to that meeting got me all worked up about the unknowns.  How everything is going to work out, etc.  It scares me, but the Lord reminded me that He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above anything I ask or think.  That comforted me and I have decided to leave it all with Him.  Everyone was joking about the weather, because even though we are having a cold snap here in Southern California, Denver is much colder.  As I drove around I started to notice how green it is here and flowers that are blooming.  I have always taken it all for granted, only now do I realize how blessed I have been to enjoy such beauty.  Then I got a really strong feeling that I do not want to leave, stronger than I have had before.

Unfortunately, I think I am coming down with a cold.  Certainly, I have been under a lot of stress.  Tomorrow is the inspection with the buyers, I am hopeful that after a good night's rest I will be feeling well enough to get through the day.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

What a day!

I knew today might be challenging, but I did not expect many of the things that happened today.  It was one of those days where things happened one right after the other.

I woke in the morning and worked hard to get the house neat as a pin for the appraiser.  After that I was off to see my PT (and this time on the right day).  Anyway, the past few days I have been in quite a bit of pain in my tummy.  Eating is causing pain, no way around it.  It has been hurting so much that I have been skipping meals.  I told my PT how much pain I am in and that I am skipping meals again.  She said that isn't good because I am already skinny.  Anyway, what she did today felt so good and helped, but then I eat and the pain comes back.  She and I are in agreement about what is going on with me, which I feel relieved about that.  She said that the function of my bowel is off and that with all the work she has done it should be functioning better, but it isn't.  She said that something is preventing my bowel from functioning properly.  So it is looking more and more like the only answer is surgery.  Even so, I am going to continue PT through December and January.  We will see what God does.

After my PT appointment, I rushed home and the appraiser was already there.  I am thankful that my husband and our realtor were there to meet him.  We should know the results by the middle or end of next week. While Mark and I were talking to our realtor I got a phone call and it was Brandon.  He was in the school nurse's office because he fell down while at PE, hit his head and blacked out.  He did not want to come home, but the nurse said since he blacked out, he has to.  Thankfully he is doing fine, except for a headache.  I am blessed that he is okay.

Later, I picked up Eric from school and went to return an item to Costco. While there I noticed some cool fully lined sweat jackets. Knowing Eric needs more warm things for Colorado I had him try one on and he loved it.  Well, somehow during that time I dropped my jacket and didn't know it.  When I was at the check out my Mom called, she said she got a new cell phone, but she couldn't get it to work.  Since we were not far from her house I told her we were on our way.  The sun was going down and it felt cold so Eric put his new jacket on.  While driving I realized I was cold and wondered where my jacket was.  We had to go back to Costco.  I gave Eric my membership card so he could run in, find the jacket and then leave.  Well, I had to park the car because it was taking him longer than anticipated.

When we finally found each other in the parking lot, Eric had a tale to tell.  Some of the store staff noticed he was wearing that new jacket and approached him.  They were thinking he was a shoplifter because they asked him if he paid for the jacket.  Eric said he had 3 employees around him, one being a big burly man that was scary.  Thankfully, one of the clerks in the clothing area remembered Eric and me and knew that we bought the jacket.  So funny to know that people are watching us when we do not even know.  After all that excitement it was a good thing that my mom's cell phone fix was as easy as pressing two buttons.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas Time

My oldest son had a friend over tonight and I took them down to a place in town where they have lots of Christmas lights and music.  We had fun walking around viewing the lights and the kids got some hot chocolate. It was a great way to spend a Saturday night.

This week had its twists and turns.  For one, I wrote my PT appointment down on the wrong day.  I showed up for my appointment on time, but a day late.  Unfortunately, there was no room on my PT''s calendar to reschedule.  Then I had a phone appointment with my endometriosis doctor.  He got hung up with a patient, so I did not hear from him until 4 hours after my scheduled appointment.  The conversation went alright, but we were both tired.  I had to tell him that the PT has not made much difference.  I do wish that I could say differently.  Even so, I am going to hang with it till I move to give it a good try.

I spent one day of the week walking around in a fog.  This time of year has always been stressful for me.  Not only because of Christmas, but both the boys' birthdays are in December.  Load on top of that escrow, a garage sale, and a trip to Denver, and I think I have valid cause to be stressed.  As my realtor says, selling a house and moving is one of the most stressful things in our lives.

Friday afternoon, my Dusty kitty was enjoying herself in our backyard when all the sudden she burst through the sliding glass door that was left ajar.  She had spit hanging from her mouth and a wild look in her eye.  Then she started gagging like something was caught in her throat.  I had to leave her to pick the boys up from school.  We ended up taking her to the ER vet.  They checked her out and said she was fine, but she has a heart murmur.  We brought her home and praise the Lord in the morning she started eating again.  She is still having a little trouble with a cough here and there, but I pray she will heal from whatever happened.

We got the papers for escrow in the mail.  Our agent was in Hawaii this week, but he emailed us and let us know what is going on.  He told us the appraiser is coming on Tuesday.  Eek!  We need prayer!  My realtor told me that I have to make sure the house is looking good and it might be a good idea to bake cookies.  Hopefully, we can appraise at a good price.  Thursday the buyer is coming with an inspector.  In short, it is going to be a high stress week for me.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


This morning I rose early and got on my knees by my bed.  I looked out the window at the big tree on my neighbor's property.  I have enjoyed that tree for 18 years and it feels like a friend.  To think that soon I will no longer see it makes me sad.  I remember raking up its leaves in autumn to make a pile for my boys to jump in.  I remember Gentleman Bird flew to that tree when he was first flying.  So many precious memories!  I managed to pray a bit, but mostly these days it is the basic "Lord, please help me."  My mind traveled to the thought of greeting a man from the moving company.  My body filled with anxiety.  Every step is a step toward separating from what I know.  The good thing in all this is that I will not be separated from God.

Mark dropped the boys off at school and then came back home with a pumpkin muffin from Panera Bread.  As we enjoyed a hot beverage and munched on our shared muffin we talked about moving.  Shortly after finishing our muffin the man from the moving company arrived to take inventory.  As he went about his business, Mark and I stood in our little house remembered the day we moved in.  We embraced one another thankful for our good memories.

All of us are having anxiety about the move and it comes out in different ways.  Mark and I have been struggling with attitudes and behavioral issues concerning our sons.  Each of us is looking around and realizing that we may be enjoying something for the last time.  Today we live in our home and the next thing we know we will be in a strange place. In a few weeks we will be boarding a plane to this new place we are going to call home.  We will explore Denver for five days looking for the spot God wants us to settle.  This will be a very important trip for our little family.

"He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." (1 John 4:4)
And though this world, with devils filled,
Should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed
His truth to triumph though us.

Monday, November 30, 2009

On this last day of November

I want to give thanks to my blog friends for all their support and prayers over the past year.  Your words of encouragement have meant so much.  God has used you in my life for good.  Thank you!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Walk in the Park

Today I enjoyed spending time with my youngest son, Brandon.  We went to a park in Irvine that has a lake.

We walked down long winding walking paths.

Till we were down by the lake.

It was a beautiful autumn day.  The air was nippy with a light wind.  Rain clouds passed by overhead.

We sat on a bench and talked, enjoying our time together and the lake.

Ducks floated by on the water.

After our time enjoying the park we walked over to a small French cafe for some hot chocolate and a chocolate croissant.

On the way home I stopped to take a picture of some autumn trees near our home and collect some colorful fallen leaves.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Hiking with my Son

Today I spent some time alone with my oldest son.  The teen years are challenging and a good way to get through is to spend time together.  I decided to take him hiking.

It was good to get out in nature and enjoy the scenery.  We had some issues to work out and thankfully the Lord blessed our time.

Being a mom is a tough job, but I am so thankful for the opportunity to be a parent to my sons.  After our hike and a soul searching discussion, we enjoyed a grand lunch at Nordstrom Cafe.  The cafe is never very crowded, has delicious food and wonderful view of the hills.  We had a lovely time together and came back home refreshed.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

From the Finley archives
Thanksgiving Day 2003
Wishing everyone a blessed day!

Moving On

I am sitting at my computer in my Little Blue Cottage knowing that I only have two more months to live here.  Yes, our counter offer was accepted and signed Tuesday morning.  In the afternoon, Mark had the pleasure of meeting the sweet family that is buying our house.  They are a young couple with a little boy.  The husband is a veteran.  Mark said that they are very happy with the house and that they stayed visiting for quite some time.  While they were visiting I was having lunch with a girlfriend.  She and I met when I moved into the Little Blue Cottage 18 years ago.  She was my neighbor across the street.  We used to watch each others homes and pets while we were away on trips.  I sometimes babysat her girls and her girls babysat my boys.  As I remember all my many years of blessing here at the cottage, I pray that the new little family will be blessed as we have been.

My PT appointment went very well.  She hit all the major spots today.  We are getting closer to what may be going on in there.  She has discovered that I have some scar tissue around my diaphragm on the right that is causing the pulling or pressure I feel on that side of my ribcage.  She did some deep tissue massage there and it hurt like mad.  Then she did some lifting of the tissue and I realized that I could breath more freely.  I do not like to think about the mess inside my body, I just try to focus on the Lord.  My PT is not sure about the left side yet, but is confident that there are some things adhesed together.  She is going to try and break this tissue up so as to free up organs to function better.

In the evening I joined my men at a scouting event.  They were all so happy I came.  We went bowling!  It was a great way to end our day.

Monday, November 23, 2009

More Wow!

Tonight as I sit and type this post, I can hear my wind chime ringing.  The Santa Ana Winds are kicking up again.  It certainly has been very dry here in Southern California.

Well, we had two buyers look at our house today, one in the morning and one in the evening.  In the afternoon our agent came by and informed us that we had another offer.  This one was also over our asking price.  I am overwhelmed by the Lord's kindness to us!  Today Mark and I countered one of the offers.  I am nervous.  Once we settle the offer, there will be a home inspection to get through and the appraisal. It is nerve racking because each little piece feels like a domino and if any piece wavers, it could fall and knock all the other dominos down with it.  The Lord knows and all is in HIS control.

I have been in pain since last week.  The past few days I have been in a lot of discomfort.  Tomorrow I am seeing my PT so I will let her know.  Also, I got a call from my GP.  She let me know that my bone scan results came back.  I still have osteopenia.  Having a complete hysterectomy at age 37 and not taking estrogen replacement does that.  The good news is that osteopenia does not always lead to osteoporosis.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Yes, that is about all we could say to the offers we received.  Both buyers like the house so much that they are offering $10,000 to $20,000 above our asking price!  Both Mark and I never expected anything like this.  And our house has only been listed 3 days!  We are taking time to think the offers over.  There is still a lot that has to be gone through yet, the biggest one is the appraisal of the house. Thank you everyone for your prayers!

The other thing that has my head spinning is with these two offers, we are looking at moving sooner than I expected.  We could possibly be looking at the month of January 2010.  The Lord knows and has it all under HIS control of course.  I leave it all to Him.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Family Day Trip Plus

Today we decided to take our annual trip up to Oak Glen to enjoy a day in the country.  At first our teenage boys were not so keen on the idea, but once they got up there they enjoyed themselves tremendously.  It was good to get away from all the stress that we have been feeling at home and enjoy ourselves out in nature and eat some delicious food.

Here are all my men in their cool shades.

The shades of autumn were gorgeous.

Once home it was back to stressville.  Later in the evening we got a call from our realtor who told us we have two offers on the house that are worth considering.  We had one earlier in the week that did not work.  So that makes three offers in one week!  We will be meeting with our realtor tomorrow.

Friday, November 20, 2009

A November Walk in the Park

Today was a busy day.  After Mark and the boys went off to school and work, I got myself ready for my day.  First on my agenda was making the house tidy in case realtors decided to drop by.  Then I went off to the lab to get my blood panel done.  Today was not a good day for that.  I got stuck 4 times before they got enough blood out of me.  After that I grabbed a bite to eat at Starbucks and went over to Mark's office.  We chatted for a bit and then I was off to my physcial therapy appointment.  After that I jumped in the car and went to pick the boys up from school.  They only had a half day today.  On half days I also pick up their friend and let him stay at my house till his mom gets off work.  When we got home we noticed two realtors had stopped by and after a few hours of being home we got a call that a 3rd realtor was coming.  It was time for the boys' friend to go home so I dropped him off along with Brandon who had been invited to stay and hang out.  Since it was just Eric and me, I decided to go to the park.  I brought my camera along and took pictures.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Chit Chat and More Thanks

The past few days have been busy and on top of that, I did not feel like posting.  Probably because I have been a little bit sick with a cold.  Tuesday I got my bone scan done and was so glad to get that checked off my list.  All that is left is a blood test and mammogram.  I meant to do the blood test twice this week, but keep forgetting.  By the time I remember I have already eaten breakfast.  The blood has to be done first thing in the morning before eating breakfast.  I will try again tomorrow.

Wednesday was Mark's birthday and I was busy all day trying to make it special for him.  Today I cleaned the house real good for a meeting with our realtor (more about that below).  Then tonight was 1st quarter report card night at the high school.  We picked up report cards for both our boys and then got to speak with some of their teachers.  Brandon is doing well at school and we are proud of him.  Eric is doing well in certain classes, but in two of his classes he is not doing well at all.  It does not have anything to do with capabilities, Eric tends to be on the gifted side.  The problem is that he is not motivated and there seems to be nothing to motivate him.  It is a very hard spot for a parent to be in with their child.

Today I met with our realtor.  He said that the couple that came through last Friday really liked our house.  They liked it so much that they wanted to make an offer, however it was a low offer.  So we decided to list the house and see what happens.  God will get us to Colorado, just that sometimes I would like to know how it is all going to work out.

I still feel very sad about my losing my bunny rabbit.  This past Tuesday marked one week since she passed. Even now just writing about it brings tears to my eyes.  I feel I did not get enough time with her.  Her death was so sudden.  Then tonight I read at Tickleberry Farm this quote...

"The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than houses. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who nevertheless, set aside a day of Thanksgiving."  H.U. Westermayer

This made me realize that instead of asking "why", I should be thanking God for the time I had with the bunny.  So,  I have begun to whisper, "Lord, thank you for the time I had with Bun."  Hopefully it will be the ointment to heal my broken heart.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Thanksgiving in Action

When the boys come home from camping with the scouts, they usually bring home leftover food items.  Such as a jug of milk, 10 lb. bag of potatoes, a jar of peanut butter, chorizo, etc.  Oh, and last week, Mark brought home a bag of delicious tangerines from a friend at work.  This got me thinking about my blog friend Outdoor Mom who writes about free food she gets at her house.  Really it is a blessing from the Lord, a tangible way to see that He is indeed providing for us.  It is a cause for thanksgiving.

Now not everything that we get is "organic", but recently I read in 1 Timothy 4:4-5 "For everything God made is good, and we may eat it gladly if we are thankful for it, and if we ask God to bless it, for it is made good by the Word of God and prayer."  So this verse convinced me that everything I eat need not be entirely organic.  If God brings it may way and I am thankful for it and ask His blessing on the food, it is good to eat.

So I took the potatoes and milk the Lord provided and started making a pot of potato soup.

Then I used the peanut butter and made up a batch of peanut butter cookies, which I gave the boys as a snack when I picked them up from school.

We prayed over our meal and we are most certainly thankful for the Lord's blessing.  Hmm, next I will have to come up with a way to enjoy that chorizo.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Wonderful Surprise

This afternoon I decided to visit my favorite antique shop called Country Roads.  Amazingly I brought my camera along.  Originally I was going to go on a hike, but with the Santa Ana winds blowing I decided against it.  Going to Country Roads makes me remember my blog friend Candy who visited Country Roads last year on a holiday with her family.  Anyway, when I arrived the parking lot was full.  Hm, I wondered what was going on.  I had to go around the corner and park in front of Lemon St. Flats.

These quaint little apartments look like a picture from Europe.  I walked over to Country Roads and it seemed busier than normal for a Sunday afternoon.  Then I noticed this sign once I stepped in the entrance.

I stood in front of the sign and noticing the time I thought Rachel had surely come and gone.  But I was wrong.  As I walked through the store I finally came to the place where Rachel was signing her books.  I saw her very clearly.  There was a counter blocking the usual opening, I was not very far from her.  There was a huge mirror in back of her and I could see my reflection.  I went around to the door where you could line up to buy a book and have it signed.  I was much too shy to go up, plus I really do not have the money to spend on her book right now.  So I settled for these pictures.

I also took time to enjoy the store as well.



 After enjoying my afternoon I stopped at the grocery store to pick up a few items and then came home to my kitty who was sitting on the couch waiting for me.  I call Princess my Shabby Chic kitty.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Lord Knows

Okay, the Lord knows me.  He knows me better than I know myself!  Why do I doubt?  It seems so silly to doubt the Lord, but that is what my flesh does.

This morning I woke up feeling exhausted even after a good night's rest.  The events of the week really have taken a toll on me.  The Lord knew and He planned a fantastic day of rest for me.  It was a beautiful crisp fall day today. The chill in the air made me want to take a nice warm bubble bath in the morning.  Later I had a chat with my best girlfriend.  In the afternoon I drove over to a shopping center that is in between two small lakes.  As I wandered through the outdoor mall I came to an opening where I could see colorful fall leaves against a blue sky and the lake beyond.  I did not have my camera so a missed photo op there. 

I have been asking the Lord to speak to me.  He has, but when I wandered into a bookstore I received confirmation.  I found a book by Anne Graham Lotz titled "Why?"  I could see that the Lord has a sense of humor.  Practically all I have been saying to Him is "why" and so He sends me a book with that title.  Another thought that the Lord has placed in my head is thoughts of Joseph.  First he was thrown into a pit by his brothers.  I really started to think about that last night.  Joseph kept calling to his brothers from that pit and they had no mercy.  How would I feel?  Unloved, that is how I would feel.  Can you imagine how he felt when they sold him as a slave?

I think of Joseph among strangers in a strange land.  He never let go of the Lord, even in adversity.  And then the dream God gave him finally came true.  And when that dream came true, God made it even better with the reconciliation with his family.  But it all happened in God's timing.  The trials and tribulations that Joseph endured made his connection to the Lord stronger.  Yes, I want to be like Joseph.  And while in the bookstore reading various books I even came across this message about Joseph confirming what the Lord had already laid on my heart.

After purchasing some books, I stopped at a French bakery to oogle at the goodies.  I left, put the books in my car and then noticed a bridge that led to a park.  The sun was setting as I crossed the bridge that a small stream meandered under.  Paths wound through the green grass of the park and beyond was the other small lake.  As I walked through the park, a chilly wind blew and I zipped up my sweather and brought the collar close to my neck.  I viewed the expanse of green grass and whispered to myself that Bun would like this park.  As I kept walking it seemed I was walking into the setting sun.  Another bridge lie ahead and as I went across it, the tops of the golden trees peeking over the bridge made me feel close to heaven.

On the way home I stopped at Panera Bread and bought myself a cheese danish.  I do not know why, but it seems like a good thing to have with a warm cup of tea on a chilly fall day.  Once home my kitties greeted me; I thank God for His ever present love and care.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Our First Showing

Tonight we were blessed with our first showing of the house.  We were not sure that the showing was going to happen at first because the clients were late.  Mark and the boys left for camp so I was here alone to let everyone in.  Our house is not listed yet so no one has access to the key.  They did not take long and now I am here alone with two kitties.

The couple (very nice) stepped in and the wife sighed like she liked it.  Yes!  I was glad Mark took the day off as promised, we got so much accomplished.  When we were done in the afternoon, I sat down in the recliner and fell asleep.  I haven't been sleeping much at night because of grieving so naps are needed.

I did not make any plans for myself since I have been so busy working on the house and just trying to keep up with daily life.  I know that the Lord arranged this time for me.  There was no getting out of it.  I tried to get someone to stay home with me, but was unsuccessful.  Also, I invited a friend to lunch, but she was busy.  I have not been looking forward to time alone because of grief.  Yes, I have grief over what happened with my sweet Bun, but mixed in is grief over what is happening to us.  Selling our home, leaving family & friends and the state I have lived in all my life.  These are not easy things to do.  I am thankful that my husband did not get laid off, but at the same time I wonder why.  Why is this happening to us?  Then that annoying saying chimes in "Why not you?" Grr.  Or, "There are others who have it much worse."  These thoughts are to drive me to thanksgiving; why isn't it working?  I eek out maybe a little thanksgiving, but it isn't much.  I guess I am the stubborn rebellious type. sigh  Mark told me that he has been praying and he feels that we are really going to like it in Colorado.  And bratty me responded "Well, it better be super cool because I feel I am giving up a lot."  Awful aren't I?

I know that I have surrendering to do.  That song "I Surrender All" starts playing in my head.  All to Jesus I surrender, I surrender all.  I think I am going to be spending my weekend working on that.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cottage November

This was Thursday's evening sky.

Autumn flowers around the cottage.

Today was a busy day.  I was up early and left the house by 7 a.m.  My PT appointment went well. Afterward I did some grocery shopping.  I almost started crying because I always buy veggies for Bun, but she isn't here anymore.  Thankfully, while I was shopping Mark called me to ask how my PT appointment went.  That helped me not cry in the store.

I went home and put the groceries away and then I was off to my doctor appointment.  I need to get a blood work, a mammogram & a bone scan done.  I will have to set that up next week.  Then I met Mark for lunch.  We go to a little French cafe.  The manager knows us because we have been going there for years now.  Today he wasn't there when we first arrived, but when he came back from a delivery he came over to our table and said "Hello, friends!"  He is so very sweet.

After lunch I did a bit of shopping, but I just felt too sad to enjoy it.  After that I went to pick up the boys from school.  Once Mark got home from work we all started working on the house.  We moved some furniture around in the boys room and the guest room.  We also moved more things out of the house and into the garage.  It gave all of us a sad feeling.  Friday Mark is taking a day off from work to help me finish cleaning up the house.  Thank God!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thank You and Staging Pictures

 Thank you to those who posted regarding my sweet Bun.  Your sympathies mean so much!!  Losing her makes everything seem unbearable right now.  She was so very sweet and loving.  Whenever I came in the backyard she would come running to me and circle my feet.  She was always so happy to see me and of course I her.  She would always shower me with kisses.  Having to let go of that is very hard. Thankfully, the boys being home and us working hard to get our house ready for showing was a great distraction.  Except in the late afternoon, when I visited Bun's hutch, it hurt really bad.  I just cannot do anything with her hutch right now.

I am posting some pictures of the house.  There is so much to do yet, but we are making progress. Tomorrow I will not be able to work on the house because I have to be at a physical therapy appointment at 7:45 a.m.  I may be able to stop at home for a few hours, but will have to leave again for another doctor appointment.  Planning on having lunch with Mark after that, then run over and pick the boys up from school.  We all will have to be working on the house in the evening and the guys will need to be packing their gear for camp too.  At least I have Friday to put the finishing touches on everything before our realtor comes.

This is a new chair I bought at World Market a week ago.  I got it $10 off the sale price because I bought the floor model, the last one they had.

Here is my dining room with a new rug.  After the picture I changed the plates on the wall to my Friendly Village ones.  It just makes it look a little more autumnish.

Here is the powder room with the new white baseboard and no wallpaper border.  It looks so fresh and clean.

 Just little touches here and there have been made which I hope will help.  Put up the soap dish on the wall all by myself.  A new switch plate helps make things look clean.


Here is the master bedroom all freshly painted and staged.  We haven't put anything on the walls, I .  With the new paint job and a little less furniture this room feel very spacious.