Friday, December 26, 2008

Perfect Gifts...after Jesus, of course!

Every good and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is not variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17 NKJ

Alina, Evan, Olivia, Auntie Grandma, Amelia, Lydia (little Celia is on her mother's lap)
The above picture shows the last event from our own Christmas day with family and friends. We had two families join us, one (Jay's daughter's) family of four, and the other was the Doudin family of six with four lovely girls. So, twelve of us gathered to play and eat and converse and laugh. It was simply divine for this grandmother who misses her own grandchildren desperately at this time of year. The LORD provided me with comfort and joy! And then....

The perfect gift for an avid gardener is what My DH (dear husband) built me, a serious worm box so I can reap the benefits of vermiculture for my garden. Really, though, it is a lazy way for this gardener to deal with compost in the winter. The amazing box is in the sunroom where it is cool. It has handles and sits on rollers so I can pull it out. It is the most wonderful gift, the most perfect gift for the serious gardener who always wants more options. I am married to a wonderful man, and we had a wonderful Christmas; it's a wonderful life, as they say in the movies!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas 'Breaks' Part 2

Well, God did it again! He answered our prayers to bring Kelly all the way home to his lovely family for Christmas.
Although the gorge was closed Kelly felt like he could make it by going around Mount Hood. He and Melissa called me from the driveway in the car with all the kids. God enabled them the 'break' to get home. They did slip into town easily. And I am so incredibly grateful. This picture includes is most of the family, more joining them later in the week.

On the other hand, I spoke with Kimber who was in good spirits this afternoon. She'd taken a shower which turned out to be a family event with her husband Chris opening shampoo, conditioner, and body wash so she could let Isabella groom her. And she is in less pain today.
To be continued!

Trauma and Drama of a Christmas 'Break'

This darling girl of mine, Kimber, was having a great day off on Friday, beginning her Christmas vacation from the bank a little early with shopping and decorating. She wanted to hang her Christmas cards high and on ribbons. Standing on the arm of the couch to gain some height more than her diminutive 4'9" elevation grants her she began only to experience a slow motion fall to the floor, breaking her elbow. Surgery is to follow sometime this week...when there is a 'break' in the weather so they can get to the doctor's office and to a hospital.
Unknown at this joyous time of summer is that for Christmas all she wants is her right arm back! How do you wash your hair? How do you apply mascara? How do you put the turkey in and take it out? The trauma from the pain and the drama of a whole new life, like not being able to drive surround my darling Kimber with puzzling questions.

Fortunately we know from these pictures of our summer vacation, she KNOWS how to rest and relax. Maybe she'll get more than she'd planned for on this Christmas 'break'.

The other 'break' we are looking for is one in the weather so that Kelly can get home to his precious children. He flew in from Virginia on Saturday afternoon, and his wife Melissa got through the gorge allright. Then they closed it up tight due to snow and ice and wind. So, we are praying for a 'break' of another kind for them to be able to slip to speak.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Pretty Pansy Posing Politely and Peaking around the Petunia

This sweet Pansy has decided to blossom in my sunroom. She posed so sweetly peaking out from behind the Laura Bush Petunia as I sat in meditation contemplating the order of the room and whether I should destroy that order by setting up the treadmill.
She must have dropped seeds into the petunia barrel over the summer, and when I brought in the Laura Bush I brought in the seeds for litttle Pansy.

Does my friend Connie know what variety she it? You can see one of the Laura Bushes hiding in the foliage to the right. Others bloom above. They are delicate and fragrant, and this is the second winter for them. I've kept them going all this time!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Pittsburg Landing, Part 5 (The Leaving)

This herd of Mule Deer greeted us beyond the pond as we turned to leave. They meandered, then loped up the hill together as one. If you click on the picture you can see them 'up close and personal', and then their big "mule" ears, from which they get their name, really stand out.
Below is a rock face we passed on our way back up the canyon. This romantic display of two holes shaped like hearts was the perfect ending and good-bye to the splendid, divine, and romantic date. Click on the picture to see them up close too.

Th-that's all folks!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Pittsburg Landing Date, Part 4 (The Ranch)

There used to be a working ranch along the river, and we poked around looking at all the fascinating parts. This is the solar weather station. We thought perhaps the Forest Service used the ranch and would need weather data.
The chicken house was in disrepair, for sure, and I won't publish the picture of the tiny 'solar' outhouse. It was merely a tiny outhouse with clear, hard plastic roof!

The house has been used recently with mugs still hanging in the kitchen. We peered into windows to see bunks set up in two rooms. You can see the above-ground rock cellar at the back right of the house. It was a beauty!

The pond close to the corrals was so still I did not see that it was water and missed a picture of the coot floating about when we first arrived.

My sister Barb and I used to enjoy the frivolous occupation of imagining we live in places like this. I began speaking to my husband about how romantic it would be to live here; he pointed out the realities. This frivolous occupation is more fun with a sister who understands you will never really take up such a living; I think this kind of imagining frightened my husband! You have to admit going out daily from the little house could only bring more awe and reverence for God in such a scenic setting.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Pittsburg Landing Part 3 (The Hike)

The trail began easily enough on flat, grassy terrain. Then quite suddenly it began to rise among the rocks. At the top on the right, where the rock juts up, the trail took a turn for the worse (for us). It became steep, narrow and loaded with loose rocks. Becoming too treacherous and slippery for older, unbalanced folks like us we turned back. Even the short hike was lovely and invigorating!

Below is a picture of the trail on the opposite side of the river in Oregon. Just to the left of the tree you can see some 'fill' of rocks holding the trail in place. If you click on that you can get a close-up look at the trail!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Pittsburg Landing Date, Part 2 (The Snake)

The 'snakey' Snake River lays itself down along the bottom of this canyon. There were fishermen on the river Friday after Thanksgiving and several campers camping along the river in the campground.
These pictures above and below look north between Oregon and Idaho.

Doesn't this sand bar (below) on the Oregon side look inviting?

The picture below looks south between Oregon and Idaho as the river snakes even more and the mountains on the Idaho side begin to rise up.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pittsburg Landing, Part 1

On Friday after Thanksgiving my Dear Husband asked me out for a date! We decided on Pittsburg Landing for the scenery, landscape and hiking potential. After driving down White Bird grade to the Salmon River, we headed up to the top of the Seven Devils Mountains for a breathtaking view and some lunch. The above picture was directly in front of us as we ate our turkey sandwiches in the warmth of the car. You cannot see the Snake River as it lays itself down at the very bottom of the canyon.

This was the view to the right of us. You can see the terraces of rock. There was a pretty good forest fire two summers ago in here, and the trees have not been harvested so they are abundant and burned black in the bark with orange branches of needles, being mostly pine. In the next post I will show you the Snake River and treacherous trail we hiked only a bit of before deciding to poke around an abandoned farm with a magnificent pond.