Tuesday, December 18, 2012

First snow

Good morning, Narnia.
I look forward to the snow every year. I do not get tired of taking pictures of the same subjects all the time. I don't get tired of the snow.
 Actually, that is a lie. I get tired of it in May when we am trying to plant a garden.
But when we are looking forward to Christmas, the snow is a winter wonderland and I love it.
Here are pictures for those of you that do not live in Narnia.

Edited to add the following pictures. Cooper and Lucy just came in from playing in the snow. I am guessing that this is worlds better than the horse manure he usually tracks in. But still...

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Do you see what I see?

The sun, the sun, shining in the sky....lalalala la la la la.
Go ahead, sing along. I know all the Oregonians want to.
I am uber-thankful this morning. Oh, so easy on a morning like this, right?

Just wanted to say, for the record, that I am not generically thankful to the universe, or an unnamed higher power or thankful to myself for providing myself with these things I love.

I am thankful to a specific God, the ultimate God, the Creator of the universe and the lifter of my head.
He is the Alpha and Omega God, the  Lion and the Lamb God, the Truth and Grace God.
God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Isaiah 57:15 in The Message says this:
A Message from the high and towering God,
    who lives in Eternity,
    whose name is Holy:
“I live in the high and holy places,
    but also with the low-spirited, the spirit-crushed,
And what I do is put new spirit in them,
    get them up and on their feet again.

That is the Holy God I am thankful to for all these gifts he gives me.

I thought I'd post some pictures of a few things I am thankful for. My grateful list goes on and on, but I couldn't run around and take pictures of everyone and everything. So, if you are not on my list here, rest assured; I am indeed thankful for you.

The Sun, the Sun, shining in the sky...!

This wine came in the mail for me yesterday. That makes me happy.

I think this helped me sleep better last night. Even if it smells like old stinky boy socks. Still thankful.
Thankful for snow in the hills and a roof over my head.

Snoozin' Lucy. She is worn out from her mountain hike yesterday.

Seems I am especially thankful for beverages. Hmmmm. Mt Hood Roasters may be the BCE (Best Coffee Ever.)

Even if they are not thankful to me, EVER, I am thankful for them. I think.

What's not to love? Ruby and Ranger the goats.
Our pond. Just because it's beautiful. 
I won't leave the Coopster off my list. Joy to the World!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


It looks like Cinderella Lucy is napping next to an old mop.
So we kinda knew when we got a Goldendoodle that we would have to do some type of grooming. But I thought we could just do it at home. We trim our horse's ears and stray hairs when needed, occasionally rarely. But we do it.
But Cooper the Doodle had hair that grew and grew and grew. It is a veritable mud magnet.
Here are some BEFORE pics.

Yep, I put a pony in just so I could see his eyes.
Doesn't he look like a giant muppet? (Cooper, not Rod.)

So last friday we finally decided he needed to go see a professional groomer. He is not the only one in the family that needs professional help, but that is beside the point.
Cooper went in for a 4.5 hour spa day. He was petted, pampered and polished. I think he had a fabulous day. AND he didn't look like a mere shadow of his former self, like we were afraid would happen. He looked like Cooper. Only better.
 We can see his eyes! We can see his eyes!

Here are some pictures. Sorry for how bad they are, but I am still experimenting with the new camera.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

What to expect when you're expecting...

Nope. Not a pregnancy post. Sorry if you were expecting one based on the title.
Are you disappointed? Let down? Full of frustration?
Well, this is what happens when you have unfulfilled expectations.
Sucks, doesn't it.

I always think I don't have expectations of people. Then I am let down because I find that, in fact, I do.
Without too much conscience thought (because that is how I roll ) I find myself disappointed in people I know. Or am related to.

(FYI: If you are suddenly concerned that I could possibly be talking about you, then, yes.
Yes, I am talking about you. Please do whatever you think is necessary to work your way back into my good graces. I like Starbuck's gift cards, a heartfelt note, (even better if it is poetry), or cash.)

I think at Christmas many times we are disappointed with family and/or friends.Maybe our expectations are higher at Christmas because it seems like a magical time of year when anything is possible. (Darn those twinkling lights that raise our hopes!)

But then....

You didn't get a Christmas card.
You didn't get a "hello there"  or an "eye hug" at church.
So-and-so didn't comment on your really great blog post.
You didn't get invited to a party that almost everyone else did.
A sister isn't raising her children the way you think she should.
You didn't get the acknowledgement /raise/promotion at work that you thought you deserved.
Your children aren't making the choices you think they should. (because you know best, of course)
Your friends or family didn't pitch in and help when you needed it, even though you always help them.

Your husband left his dirty clothes on the side of the bed. Again. (and his initials are ROD)
A friend didn't stop by for a visit when she was in the area.
Your wife made that yucky Turkey Curry again,
Your family doesn't celebrate Christmas in a way that is meaningful to you.
Nobody liked your latest Facebook status.
Nobody noticed. Nobody asked. Nobody called. Nobody listened. Nobody said thanks.

And I'm not gonna lie. It hurts.
But the truth of it is, we live in a broken world with messy relationships.

When I am disappointed because I expected you to call me, why didn't you call me??!!  something that didn't occur (I'm sure you were just busy), one thing I (try) to do is to remember the good things.
The calls that did happen.
The visits.
The emails.
The laughs.
The times they've helped.
The times they've been there.

You know what I mean. And then I will move into the times(and they have been many) that I have let YOU down.
I have and I know it. Please don't email me and remind me.

But even more important than trying turn that frown upside down by my own power of common sense and recollection, is to consider the expectations I can have for God; the One who never lets me down.

Such as these truths:

-God to be your refuge (Psalm 7 v 1)
-God to sustain you (Psalm 3 v 5)
-God's unfailing love to be trustworthy (Psalm 13 v 5)
-To be filled with joy in His presence (Psalm 16 v 11)
-For Him to be your strength (Psalm 18 v 1)
-To fear no evil (Psalm 23 v 4)
-God to guide you (Psalm 23 v 3)
-For all the ways of the Lord to be loving and faithful (Psalm 25 v 10)
-Peace to guard your hearts and minds (Philippians 4 v 7)
-That love will never fail (1 Corinthians 13 v 8)
-That the battle is the Lord's, not yours (2 Chronicles 20 v 15)
-That the mind controlled by the Spirit produces life and peace (Romans 8 v 6)

That list is obviously not all inclusive, but, honestly, how can I stay mad or disappointed when I spend time pondering and being so thankful for these truths about God? Can you?

I don't have to rely on my own strength.
I am cared for.
I can be filled with JOY.
I am L.O.V.E.D.

Peace floods my heart.
 Joy returns.
 Priorities rearrange themselves.
 Love prevails.
So, this season, when we look around and see occasions of unfulfilled expectations, (because it WILL happen) you have a choice and so do I.
Choose joy.
Love anyway.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

And a Python in a Pear Tree

 I found this on Craigslist. I did not make it up. Better check your schedule, because YOU are invited.

Everyone is invited to a "WILD REPTILE" CHRISTMAS/HOLIDAY PARTY (Vancouver)
International Reptile Rescue is having a "WILD" Christmas Holiday Reptile Party and everyone is invited...including your "harmless and well socialized reptile". It must be contained and secured with a leash if out.

EVERYONE is welcome, even if your so unfortunate as to NOT have a reptile in your life, which we might be able to remedy as will have "adoptables" available looking for loving, appropriate homes. 

Date is this coming Saturday December 8th from 2:30 to 5:30 in the "Kidz Life Building" at "Real Life Community Church" and is located at 2202 Bella Vista Rd, Vancouver WA 98683

Will have cookies, punch, games, prizes AND MORE. A good time will be had by all...including the reptiles.

Everyone MUST RSVP and let us know how many & who will be attending along with the reptile/s you'll be bringing. NO ONE WILL BE ADMITTED WITHOUT THEIR EMAIL CONFIRMATION &/OR ON THE GUEST LIST!!! ( Wow. So of I just show up with my rat snake on a leash and a plate of gingerbread boys, they won't let us in? That is not in keeping with the Christmas spirit.)

Not mandatory but a donation to International Reptile Rescue would be nice to help them continue their rescue & rehab work.
(Wait. They not only RESCUE reptiles, but they REHAB them? So there is hope for my California King snake on crack? My iguana on ice doesn't need to despair? Cue the Hallelujah chorus sung by crocodiles.)

 I don't know about you, but I picture this when I imagine a WILD REPTILE CHRISTMAS?HOLIDAY PARTY.

What a gala they must have! Imagine lots of young turtles and frogs (wait...aren't those amphibians?) dancing the Nutcracker as they munch on holiday insects.
Seriously. This whole thing has the potential to give me some pretty gnarly nightmares. 


And EWWWWWW again, even louder.

I will post a sweet Christmas picture so you don't need to scrub your eyes out with bleach anymore.
Here ya go.

Only kidding.
Just a little holiday humor.
Here is a furry version of the Nativity scene. Enjoy.