Saturday, November 29, 2014

It's beginning...

... well, it was beginning to look a lot like Christmas in some stores in September. (!)

I actually saw a few decorations for sale in August.  (I've repressed the memory of which store.)

I started decorating yesterday... and now my house is a mess... with stuff that sets out all year except Christmas, and then has to be dealt with, so the Christmas decor has a place.
And so the non-Christmas stuff is lying around with some Christmas stuff... and well,
I'm exhausted.

But my dear mother told me this morning, "Let it be a mess - until you get some rest. It's okay. It is so okay."
Ah.
I started breathing again.

Sometimes we have to talk to ourselves.
And remind ourselves that the ONLY thing we HAVE to do in life is die and pay our taxes.

Whew. That puts things in perspective.


And you don't even have to carry on. You can rest. :)

Really, stress over Christmas is crazy on many levels.

Thinking about friends who have cancer,
or who have lost loved ones in the past year (through death or divorce),
or who don't have the money to do Christmas at all,
or who are lonely, depressed, etc....
well, they give me perspective.

I was needing to settle down and think about them.

They do give perspective to my Christmas mess.

Yes.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Sweet, thankful times...

I put some of these pictures on Facebook last night, so they may be redundant to you...
but I must put them on my blog, too.
I think the above picture is perhaps the sweetest picture of Nell-Belle with her parents.
That's what I think.

And then here is Nell-Belle by herself...
I think she is precious... and I'm being objective, of course.

Well, I didn't get a picture of John yesterday (who took our pictures...
so I'll put this one up... from June (from Facebook)...

We told John he ought to write a book... about all this travels, and experiences,
and knowledge, and wisdom he's learned through it all.
Really.
He's 30, almost 31, and has lived more life than most anybody we know.
I think he could teach us some things.

-----------
On a different note,
we have lots of Thanksgiving leftovers,
so diets won't start till Monday...
if then.

 ------------
And my Christmas decorations are ready to be put out,
thanks to Ryan, Laura and Will who brought them down from the attic...

I have a love/hate relationship to those things.

I guess I ought to love them.

I mean, they do tell about CHRIST-MAS.


YEAH...
but all those decorations....
I'm tired just thinking about them.

I may do a scaled-down version of decorating this year.
OR NOT.

-------
In closing, here's a cartoon...

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Trivia Tuesday...

Turkeys are the only breed of poultry native to the Western Hemisphere.

The Wampanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate the land.

The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days.
 
The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929; "7" was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces. "UP" indicated the direction of the bubbles.

A car that shifts manually gets 2 miles more per gallon of gas than a car with automatic shift.

The highest point in Pennsylvania is lower than the lowest point in Colorado.

The first written account of the Loch Ness Monster was made in 565AD.


Ben & Jerry learned how to make ice cream by taking a $5 correspondence course offered by Penn State. (They decided to split one course.)

Johnny Cash's "A Boy Named Sue" was penned by beloved children's author Shel Silverstein.

Finally...

Thanksgiving brought about the creation of T.V. Dinners

Part of the reason that Swanson started creating T.V. Dinners in 1953 was because they needed to find something to do with 260 tons of frozen turkeys that were left over from Thanksgiving. Talk about a lot of Turkey dinners!

Monday, November 24, 2014

All Quiet on the Carmack Front...

Holiday season is here...
... with its expectations.

Frankly I think Thanksgiving and Christmas in America can get CRAZY.
Well, if we let it.

This year I'm NOT going to let it.

I'm just going to BE.
Shh...

My gifts to folks may not be perfect.
 Well, I don't know how they could be.
(I can't read people's minds.)
BUT
I
CAN
BE
THANKFUL.
And that's what I will be.

Back in 1981 Sam and I were in language school in south Brazil...
We were new, young Southern Baptist missionaries,
trying to learn Portuguese,
with fellow missionaries,
from the Assemblies of God, and Independent Baptists,
and Mennonites, and Presbyterians,
and Pentecostal Holiness churches.
It was quite a hodge-podge of Christian folk,
away from our homeland,
hovering together.

We scheduled a Thanksgiving feast at the language school on Thanksgiving night,
which the language school hosts encouraged.
We all thought that would make us feel less homesick,
and would be fun.
It helped... and we had fun...
UNTIL we found out that some Christians back in the States
thought we were being frivolous.
They were giving us money to reach people for God...
not to celebrate our holidays.
Whoa.
WHOA.
I will never, ever forget that.
Did that knowledge-
that we shouldn't do that
(according to those folks back in the States)-
help us?
ABSOLUTELY NOT.
It made us feel more isolated than ever.
We needed to celebrate Thanksgiving.
We always had...
before.
So why not there...
far away?

I guess I haven't gotten over that message---
that we shouldn't have done that --
celebrated Thanksgiving in Brazil.

But if I had to do it over..
I SO WOULD.

And I want every American
to celebrate Thanksgiving
wherever they are.

We have so much to be grateful for.

I can name several things...
like freedom...
and other things.
I'm sure you can, too.
 -----
Don't begrudge anybody...
for having a big Thanksgiving feast, okay?

It's a time to...
 and celebrate.






Saturday, November 22, 2014

My Favorite Things...

There's this from daughter Laura....
That is amazing.  Mm.
 and there's this fabulous map she did...

You can order her creations at http://society6.com/lauramax ... They are amazing... and you can get them on clothes, mugs, in picture frames, cellphone covers, etc.  Oh yes.  They would make unique Christmas gifts. :)

In other 'favorite-things' news, there's this picture....
and this one...
Sam was teaching Caroline and Andrew some of the finer points of chess...
and they were loving it.

--------
Oh, and here is one my new favorite people....
She's Helen, and she came into the tea room the other day. 
She is 100 years old.  That's as in a century-old.  Wow.

She came with Mother's group from Parkwood Retirement Community.
I forgot to take a picture until it was (almost) too late...
There were nineteen eating there.
The rest got up to shop in the huge antique mall
(including century-old Helen).
 These two decided to take it easy.
That's my mother on the right, with Peggy on the left. 
(We're partial to anybody named 'Peggy', of course.)
When she left Peggy gave me a tiny little cross to remind that Jesus loves me.
How dear is that?

And here's something else very dear...
That's my niece Elizabeth with her Caroline.
Caroline is reciting Psalm 100 at that moment.
I just put that on Facebook because I wanted more folks to see it.
I LOVE THAT PICTURE.
(and those people)

In less than a week we celebrate Thanksgiving.
I read a thanksgiving post this week on a blog,
and the blogger was being thankful for having a blog.
Well, I hadn't thought about that before.
Now I'm thankful for having a blog.
(My daughter Laura introduced me to the world of blogging years ago.)
(Thank you, Laura!)






Thursday, November 20, 2014

I got some winks!!

Aren't they darling?

I'm going to put them in my booth SOON (Friday)..
and you can come buy one... or two.
They'd make cute - and unique - Christmas presents!
(My booth is at LoneStar Antiques, 5605 Denton Highway, Haltom City, TX)

The WINKS are made by my dear sister-friend Susu... Susan Prather.

I thought I'd look at Susan's photos on Facebook - to find one to put on here,
so you could see what she looks like.
I found this one....
I thought, "That's a great picture of Susan smiling at the camera."
And then, whoa, I see my son!
(Now that was a thrill.)
(Nothing like seeing your (my) son, right?)
(He's smack-dab in the middle of the picture.)

Anyway, Susan is making these "Winks-by-Susan" and I LOVE them.

Here is her 'story', which is very touching... and important...
PLEASE READ IT...


Anyway, those WINKS are special...
and will make you smile...
and bring joy to wherever you put them,
be it in your kitchen, your den, your living room,
your guest room, your bathroom,
your laundry room. your bedroom, your entryway,
your hallway, your closet, by your makeup mirror,
wherever.

You want to make people smile, don't you?

Well, you want YOU to smile.
DON'T YOU?

They will.

------
In other news,
soon I will post about a 100-year-old lady that came to the tea room.

Stay tuned!






Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Tuesday's Tune-Up

I've got some posters to share with you.
They have a theme... and I like the theme.
It speaks to me.




I've been pretty busy lately,
but yesterday I stopped my world ... 
except for one meaningful errand
that I will tell you about in another post.
(wink, wink)

Anyway, I don't think I knew how much I needed to stop my world
until I did.
And I'm so glad I did.

If you've been busy I hope you get to slow down soon.
And if you think you just cannot -
well, that's when you probably need to slow down the most.
That's what I think.
-------

Oh, and there's this...


Saturday, November 15, 2014

The world does seem smaller now...

... what with cell phones, Facetime, Skype, e-mails, Facebook, etc., etc.
You can stay in touch with folks far away far better than ever before!

And am I glad!

On December 1st our daughter and her husband and their two dogs are moving to Portland, Oregon! 


They've been living in Dallas - 30 minutes away from us (except during rush hour).  That's been so nice.
But now we'll get to visit Oregon.  (Neither Sam nor I have ever been to Oregon.)

Ryan has gotten a really good job there, at a clinic where he will be (is) a Nurse Practitioner.

Everything has gone like clock-work - as if it were all meant to be!
(And we believe it IS meant to be.)
They sold their house the first week they put it up for sale.
He got the Portland job the week they went up there for the interview, and they signed a lease on a house up there the next week.

It IS exciting. 

Here's a picture of Laura on their visit to the state earlier this month...

And here they are together on that trip....
Laura's cousin Rob said the other night
that Laura and Ryan seem like Portland, Oregon people.
(We thought that was a great comment... and a compliment.)
So we'll be far away.... but Sam and I remind ourselves that Laura and Ryan COULD be farther away than Oregon.

And now for the obligatory "when-we-were-your-age": when we were their age we moved to Brazil.   We didn't have cell phones, emails, etc.  So, prior to moving there I got my ham radio license (yes, you read that right).   In Brazil I'd contact a ham radio operator back in the States who would call our folks on the telephone... and we'd talk that way.... like with 'Over and Out', etc.   
That seems like a whole other world and lifetime away. 

And now we're in a whole new world and lifetime - well, it's the same lifetime... I'm still me, but it does feel like a whole new -much smaller- world.  Oh yeah.... and I like it!

Anyway, we'll be scheduling our flight to Oregon pretty soon! 
And I'll tell you all about it.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Throw Back Thursday!

Here's a picture from long ago...

That's my cousin Dave, from Iowa.
He's the oldest grandchild of James Earl and Ora White,
my mother's folks.
(My mother was a White before she married my dad, Andy White.)

Here he is with his Aunt Margaret (my mom)
who is holding his little sister (or maybe his brother?).

Dave and his dear wife, Sandy, were here last week,

Here they are with Bailey and Nell....
Dave is on the left.  He's grown up a bit since those first two pics. 

My goal last week was to get a picture of him with his Aunt Margaret,
so as to fit with the picture of him as a child with his Aunt Margaret. 

Did I write that goal down on a list of things to do?
Obviously not!
Well, next time.

Ah, but I  have this picture of his Aunt Margaret a year ago today,
holding her new great-granddaughter, Nell.
I love that picture!
So those are some Throw Back Thursday pictures for today, Thursday.

Ah, but I have some TBT pics from just LAST Thursday.

Here's cousin Dave reading a question out of a basket
(kind of an ice-breaker-question basket-
which I have in case there is a lull in conversation - 
which I must have thought there was).
As I recall his question was"'What instrument would you rather know how to play: guitar, violin, piano, trumpet, other?" He answered 'Other!"  (Ha!)
Here's Caroline and Nell getting along so well.

And here are Caroline and Andrew playing with little Nell...

Later in the evening, Caroline played three songs on the piano for us....
She played beautifully!
Here's the rest of the picture...
Elizabeth is such a good mom.

So this is my Throw Back Thursday pics from years ago, a year ago, and from last week.

In closing, here's a quote I like ....

Gratitude is born in the hearts that take the time to count up past mercies.
- Charles Jefferson



Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A year ago today....

Nell was born!
Here she's yelling, "I love my Grammy!"




Here's how we found out about her months before...
Bailey and Will were in Glasgow, Scotland, working on their Master's Degrees and on Easter they Facetimed us... and said they had decorated some eggs they wanted us to see.   Then they showed us this!! (Notice the bottom left-hand corner - that's our reaction. (I took the picture.) So yes, we were excited!!  And still are!!!)
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NELL!!!
WE LOVE YOU!!!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Bbbbirthday Ppppparty Ppppics!!!

Have I got the birthday party pics today!!!
I'm so excited I'm sssstuttering!

Yesterday was my dear sister-in-law's birthday... and this picture was posted on Facebook, so I had to steal it....
She's surrounded by most of her grandchildren, Lewis, Finn, Eloise, Charlotte and Molly.
Then they watched Baylor beat OU 48-14!! 
(I had to add that fact.)

Yesterday morning I went to a Donuts and Dolls birthday party for Anna!
And they DID have fun!!
And today, she is four-years-old!!!
---------
Then late yesterday afternoon I went to my granddaughter's first birthday party!!!
Of course I had to take lots of pics...
(These pics are not in the order I took them.)


Lita made the delicious birthday pops.

 I was thrilled to get to see Amanda!

And here's Jack Barglsey with his mom, Heidi!...
What a cutie he is...
And he helped with the game we played outside..
.

And then we played a game inside!...
If you look in the middle of that picture you can see Helen and Frank... 

 Here's a closeup of them with Laura...
I wish I'd taken a picture of Helen and Frank holding Nell!
(Well, next time.) 

Oh, and here's the mother/daughter picture I love...

And here's Laura with her wonderful hubby...
(I love those two.) 

Nell got lots of good gifts!...

 Here's part of the gift her GrandDad and Grammy (Sam and I) gave her...

And here's Shea trying to figure out how to describe some of the gifts ...
(I like that picture!)


It was a great party... on every level.

Nell won't actually be one-year-old until Tuesday, November 11, 
but she's already ready!!!