Saturday, May 30, 2009


I haven't posted here in a month. I appreciate the e-mails I've received wondering where I am. It is a nice feeling to be missed, and have others notice when you aren't where you normally are. Contrary to the suspicions of Marcy, at Blessings Each Day, I am not trying to see how many comments I can tally up between extended postings. Hardy har, Mar. ;-)
Just as when I took a break over the Christmas and New Year holidays, I find my absence here indicative of the time of year at hand. Spring has been calling me outdoors. We have some pretty uncomfortable weather in these parts during the summer. It gets really hot, and really humid. I know that any work I do outdoors has to be done in the spring, because once the temperatures register in the upper 90's, with high humidity to boot, I begin my summer hibernation. Air-conditioning, thou art my friend!
We had a bad storm around here a few weeks ago. Trees toppled all over town. We didn't lose any of our trees, but a very large limb (the size of a small tree!) did break off and land in our front yard. I awoke before daylight to the sound of the fierce wind and driving rain. I began to pray, as did Mr. Studley. That huge limb could so easily have fallen toward our house, but I think a mighty angel forced it the other direction.
In the early afternoon, the day of the storm, Mr.S was cleaning storm debris from our front lawn when he came inside and said "you'd better come look at this". The forboding in his voice made me want to do just the opposite! I followed him around the corner of the house to see a dead baby bird lying on it's back in the grass. Flies were crawling all over it, in it's eyes, and down in the crevices of it's feathers. I said "it's dead", frankly wondering why he wanted me to look at a dead bird. He said he thought so, too, until he nudged it with his foot and saw it move. I picked up a tiny branch with leaves and used it to shoo the flies away. When I touched it's head, it did move, ever so slightly.

Mr. Studley asked me if there was anything we could do for the bird. It had obviously been lying there on it's back since the pre-dawn hours when the storm occurred. First of all, it had gone too long without being fed, considering it was now afternoon. Baby birds don't drink water. They receive their hydration from the food their mother feeds them, and she does so about every 15-20 minutes of daylight hours at that stage of life. This little fellow wouldn't have had anything to eat since dusk the evening before when mom settled in the nest to roost for the night. I knew he was likely dehydrated, and pneumonia was probably settling into his lungs; aside from the fact that he appeared to have a broken back.
I told Mr. S that the bird would die, but I couldn't bear leaving it to die in the grass with flies crawling all over it. I got a small box from the house, and lined it with a piece of old, soft t-shirt from the rag bag. It's legs were extended straight out, and it was as stiff as a board. I gently placed it in the box, and walked toward the house. Mr. S asked if I'd prayed for it. I said, "yes, I did. I asked God to take it quickly, so it would be out of it's misery". He, ever the optimist, who walks in great faith, said "why didn't you pray and ask God to heal it?". Insert eye roll. Somehow, I just knew he was going to ask me that! It isn't that I don't think God's capable of healing a bird. It was my own lack of faith I was doubting. I was reminded of the scripture that we are all given a measure of faith. God is no respector of persons. Jesus lives inside of me, and He has complete faith. Therefore, so do I.
I have prayed prayers of healing before, both for people and animals. As I stretched forth my hand toward this little bird, I had a sense that something was different. I slowed myself down, realizing this was no time for hurrying. As I placed my hand on that little bird's broken body, I closed my eyes and imagined the very hand of Jesus stretching forth, healing that little bird. It wasn't a goosebump feeling, or a bright light shining from Heaven. It was simply an awareness of Who lives in me. It gave new meaning to my mind of the scripture that says "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:13).
I carried the box through the house to the garage, and placed it on the chest freezer. I knew it would be safe from the cat there. It was a busy day, as you can imagine. My son and his buddy arrived with a chainsaw and a chipper shredder to clean up the tree limb from the yard. After about an hour, I went out and checked the bird. When I touched him, he tried to raise his head, which was more movement than before. I truly didn't give it much thought, then went on outside to help with the clean-up. About an hour after that, I thought to check him again. This time, he'd pulled one leg up under his body. The other leg remained stiffly extended. Back I went to helping clean. This time, I let a couple hours go by before thinking to check on him. Both legs were now pulled up under him, though he still lay stiffly.
After all the clean up was done, Mr.Studley had gone off to the shower, and my son and his buddy left to return the equipment. I again remembered to check on the bird. As I looked in that box, he was sitting there. I said "well, hey there, fella, how're you doing?". If you've ever had any dealings of caring for baby birds (fledgelings) in the wild, you'll know they are terrified of you for the first day or so. If you attempt to capture one whose on the ground, you have to be so very careful, as they'll injure themselves trying to get away from you. The only time I do try and capture one is if I know it's orphaned, or Mamma is nowhere around, and cats are. As I looked at the little bird and spoke to it, he remained quite calm, apparently unafraid of me. SO unafraid that he hopped from the box onto my finger! This was so amazing, for as I said, a normal bird would be trying desparately to escape if physically able. This bird came toward me. He just sat there on my finger looking at me. A bird, that several hours before lay seemingly dead in the grass. Folks, that is what I call a miracle.
I walked outside with little newly named Lazarus on my finger. My son had arrived back home by this time. I asked him to take some pictures before I released Lazarus. I walked around the yard for several minutes, hoping Lazarus would call his mommy. By this time, Mr.Studley had come outside and was staring in amazement at the bird he'd last seen looking dead hours earlier. After a few minutes, Lazarus cried out in that hungry cry that says "Mom, I'm hungry, what's for dinner"? You know how it thrills your heart when your child who has been sick finally says "I'm hungry?" After a couple of times of doing that, I noticed a Robin flying into the tree above our heads. She began circling around from branch to branch. It was Mamma Robin! I placed little Lazarus on a low lying branch in a small tree, then retreated to the porch to observe. Mamma Robin flew straight to Lazarus. After giving him a once-over, she flew to the ground, quickly got a worm, then flew back to the tree to feed Lazarus. We watched this for about 15 minutes, then went inside. The next morning, Lazarus still sat in that same spot, and Mamma Robin was still feeding him every few minutes.
That afternoon, they left the tree, but we continued to see them in our yard and the neighbor's yards for the next week or two. We knew it was them, because little Lazarus would hop along behind her as she was searching for food. When she got something, she'd take it to him. His little wings would start to flap excitedly as he gobbled down his dinner. Over a period of several days, we watched this, and saw Lazarus growing, and eventually flying. We were reminded of God's goodness and His power each time we watched them. Lazarus is now full grown, and we can no longer pick him out from the other birds, but we know he's fine. God is good!

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Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give.

~Matthew 10:8 New American Standard

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

You Might Be A Redneck If...

You might be a redneck if your idea of a Neighborhood Watch program is to park your fanny in a recliner on the front lawn and watch the 'goings on' of your neighbors.

This is Mr.Studley, appearing to do just that. In reality, he's checking one last time to make sure he wants to give away this favored chair before loading it onto his nephew's truck. Mr. Studley really liked this leather chair, but we have another one very similar to it, and it seemed a shame to have our living room overcrowded with too much furniture when Nephew has nothing but broken down furniture (a harsh side-effect of a divorce). So Studley, bless his heart, opted to give the chair to his nephew. Granted, we did have to threaten him with the water hose to get him out of it before loading it onto the back of the truck.

This is the now felted Hobo bag I showed you last week in it's unfelted stage. As I said before, I really like this pattern. It was an easy and fun knit. I purchased it from Pipp's Purses etsy shop. It's knit on 10.5 circular needles in a worsted weight yarn. I used my Denise Interchangeables for knitting, and Lion Wool for the yarn.

When I am knitting something to felt, I don't generally worry too much about the softness of the yarn. My experience has been that once something is felted, most felted wools feel pretty much the same; and besides, I'm not going to be wearing it next to my body. I have to tell you, though, I was pleasantly surprised by how soft this bag did feel prior to felting. I would be very comfortable wearing a sweater knit from this yarn.

Speaking of rednecks, this is my sun with his recent haul of bass. The boy does love to fish, which makes his mamma happy, as I does do love to eat fish. He doesn't bring them home all smelly with their dead eyes staring up at me, either. When he presents them to me, they've been cleaned, gutted, and filleted. They're neatly packaged in a freezer Zip-Loc bag, and ready for the freezer until I'm in the mood to fry up a mess of 'em, as we say around here. We eat very few fried foods, but fish and green tomatoes are the two exceptions to that rule.

My mom and her husband are visiting during the week of Mother's Day. We're going to surprise her with a fried fish dinner. Nothing says I love you, Mom, like a plate of fried fish, hushpuppies, and bowl of fresh cole slaw. It's a meal that'll make you want to slap your mamma. I'll refrain, considering it will be Mother's Day and all.

I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me.

~Psalm 13:6

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blogger Newbie, or Blogger Wannabe?

Tulips from my daughter's yard this week.
Do you want to start a blog? Or maybe you have one, but you feel it could use improvement. I learned about a great, free resource online for those (like moi) who need a little help with this blogging thing. In the little over a year that I've been blogging, I've learned a lot through trial and error, but I still have so much to learn.
Michelle Mitchell, better known as Scribbit, from the blog Scribbit~Motherhood in Alaska, has written an ebook for new bloggers, or those who want to improve their blogs. Whether your desire is to start a blog, or improve the one you've got, Michelle's book can help. I began reading it yesterday, and have already learned some helpful ideas for my blog, such as the excerpt below, which she did give me permission to quote here:
"When you link to another site, remember that it's a symbiotic relationship-if you do your lnks properly not only will it help the other blogs you link to, but it will help you as well.

The search engines not only count your inbound links, they also notice your outbound links, and rather than say "click here" or using someone's first names as a link, try to get into the habit of using their site name for the actual link. This builds recognition for their blog, encourages people to click on the link, and it gets you points with the search engines-a perfect win/win situation."
Sheer wisdom, I tell you! I'm anxious for some free time to sit down and read the rest of the book. You can download it to your computer (for FREE) from her site, Scribbet~Motherhood in Alaska, or you can download it from Amazon to a digital reader like Kindle, for a mere $.88. She shares that link on her blog. I am so appreciative of Michelle, and others like her who are willing to give of their time and effort to share their knowledge with those in need (like moi!).

The teeny speck in yellow is my daughter, Nikki, enjoying their first truly warm day this spring. This is the backyard of their home in Harrogate. How I wish I could hop a plane tonight and be sitting there with her tomorrow! Oh, well, it will happen next year, likely.

Yup, after being on her feet chasing one year old's all day (which she LOVES), she was enjoying kicking back on their patio the other night.

Some fresh blooms I enjoyed from my own yard last week. I love fresh flowers indoors...and outdoors!
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The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of singing has come,
And the voice of the turtledove
is heard in our land.
~Song of Solomon NKJV 2:12

Saturday, April 18, 2009

April 19th, A Day of Remembrance

April 19, 1985 Drowning death of my late husband, John, in a scuba diving accident at Possum Kingdom Lake, Palo Pinto County, Texas. Many people's lives were affected by the tragedy of that day. His children, wife, mother, siblings, in-laws, co-workers, neighbors, and good friends were all affected in some way by his sudden eviction from this world. Life did go on, but for those of us suffering the loss of this one person, it was never quite the same.

April 19, 1993 The Waco Siege. The Mount Carmel Center at the Branch Davidian Ranch in Waco, Texas, went up in flames. Seventy-six people, including more than 20 children and two pregnant women, died in that fire. A grave tragedy which affected the lives of so many people. No doubt, survivors of the victims still bear the pain and scars of their loss that day.

April 19, 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. A terrorist attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building created an explosion that took the lives of 168 people, including 19 children and three pregnant women, and left over 800 injured. Prior to the terrorist attack of 9/11, this was the deadliest act of terror against the U.S. on American soil. It is hard to imagine the number of people who were, and continue to be, adversely affected by the tragic losses of that day.

April 19, 2009 I pray for peace this day. I pray that those who walk in unforgiveness would realize they must forgive to be forgiven. I pray that the hearts of God's people would turn toward Him, their Creator. I pray we would recognize Him as the Loving Daddy He is, and not as a harsh judge who is often blamed for the tragedies mankind has brought on himself. He longs to pull His children into His arms, just as a good and loving earthly father would with his own children. I wouldn't give for the relationship I have with Him. I don't blame Him for the tragedies that have occurred in my own life, but I do thank Him for helping me through them. He is real. He is alive. He is the same today, yesterday, and forever.
The photos were taken by my son on a visit to the Oklahoma City bombing site memorial.

If My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves, pray, seek, crave, and require of necessity My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land.
~II Chronicles 7:14 Amplified Bible

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Contest Link, Exercising, & Missing Candy

As I was reading through some favorite blogs this evening, I stopped in at Randi's, "i have to say...". I found myself gazing at the most darling piece of artwork. I'll admit it, I was on the verge of coveting it. Seriously, I really want it. Fortunately for me, the artist has other copies of it on her etsy store, so it's going on my wishlist.

The artist's blog is Tollipop, and her whimsical style speaks to my heart. Not only is she a very talented artist, but she also writes. I read one of her stories while there, and am now anxiously awaiting what I hope will be another installment.
Tollipop is holding a contest on her blog. Some very blessed person will win some of her artwork. The pictures above, as well as the darling locket at the top, will be among the prizes she's awarding. I would love to win something from her, wouldn't you? If so, go to her blog and leave a comment. If you blog about it or Twitter it, you increase your odds of winning. I did both, 'cause I really want to win. She's also offering bonus entries to anyone who can get Martha Stewart to come sign up for the contest. I'll have to pass on that one. Ever since she learned I set my Thanksgiving table with styrofoam plates, Martha and I haven't exactly been on speaking terms.

That Linda, the sadistic hilarious blogger at 2nd Cup of Coffee, is at it again. Seems she wasn't satisfied that she got our lazy behinds off the couch, or out of the computer chair in my case, and moving for 30 minutes a day, five days a week, two weeks in a row. Neeeeeewwww, now she wants us to do it again for two weeks, only this time we get to cut 100 calories out of our day, too. And we're supposed to be happy about that. Oh, sure, I could just not participate, but then I'd feel left out, and I wouldn't get my name in lights..or at least not in her sidebar as a participant. Having my name in her sidebar makes me feel all important and such. And the truth of the matter is, I tend to be more disciplined in my exercise when I'm accountable to someone.
Giving up that 100 calories, though...that's a tough one. I wonder if all my vitamins and supplements would add up to a hundred calories? Or better yet, I could hurry and gobble up all the leftover Easter candy in one day. After that, I couldn't eat it anymore, and I could count that as my eliminated one hundred calories each day, right?
The flaw in that plan is that Mr. Studley would wonder what happened to all the jelly beans and peach rings. He doesn't have much of a sweet tooth, but he does love peach rings and jelly beans. I guess I'll just bite the bullet and find 100 legitimate calories to eliminate from my daily diet. That would be better than denying Mr. Studley his extra calories. Of course it goes without saying that it would benefit me!

I've already posted this in Ravelry, but realized I've not yet posted about it here. The is a pre-felted picture of my Hobo Handbag I knit from Pipp's Purses. I knit it in Lion Wool, which felted great, though it took awhile.
I've since felted it, but still need to attach a decorative button, and am contemplating lining it. I'm still undecided about the lining. I'll show a picture of post-felting on my next post. I didn't have enough space today. Picasa will only let me send four pictures over to Blogger at one time. Besides, maybe this will pique your curiosity to return again to see the felted picture.
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So do not make any hasty or premature judgments before the time when the Lord comes [again], for He will both bring to light the secret things that are [now hidden] in darkness and disclose and expose the [secret] aims (motives and purposes) of hearts. Then every man will receive his [due] commendation from God.
~1 Corinthians 4:5 Amplified Bible

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I Fought the Sloth, and the Sloth Lost

This has been my pace all winter. I can't blame snow or ice for slowing me down, as we had none. AT ALL. I'm still pouting about that. Seriously, though, I have felt like a total slug for months. My energy level was lower than a snake's belly. I felt like my get-up-and-go got-up-and-went. I've wondered if perhaps I've suffered from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder).

This was pretty much me. Well, actually, this is Putty Tat, but I think she was mocking me when this picture was taken.
Then something wonderful happened. The sun broke out, and Linda, the hilarious blogger at 2nd Cup of Coffee, issued this challenge.

Now, I may be lazy, but I am not one to back away from a challenge. She challenged her readers to do one simple thing, GET MOVING! For five days a week, 30 minutes per day, over the course of two weeks, we would commit to get our bodies moving. It could be exercising, walking the dogs, digging in the garden, or chasing the ice-cream truck around the neighborhood, as long as we got moving. There was no "D" word involved, though it was certainly okay to diet if we pleased. I didn't please.

I regularly walk the dogs, but the length of those walks varies. Sometimes I walk them ten minutes, sometimes 30 minutes, and occasionally not at all. In the colder months, I'd fallen into a habit of making the walks short, 'cause even though I've griped all winter about not getting any snow, the truth is, I don't really like to be cold.

Leyna looked up at me with that sweet little face, and asked, "please, Mommy, walk us 30 minutes each night". Well, what's a girl to do? I can't resist a face like that...unless she's begging for my last bite of popcorn. Oh, who am I kidding. It works on me then, too.

So I picked up Linda's gauntlet, strapped on the leashes, and hit the open road, or at least our neighborhood. Mr.Studley and Pepper came along, too, of course. With the exception of one particularly cold night this week, I managed to keep my commitment to do the 30 minute walk every day for two weeks, even on the weekends. For my gallant efforts, I've received the following award (me, and every other reader of Linda's who completed the course).

A very positive thing has happened to me in the course of these two weeks. I no longer feel like a slug. I'm not moving like a turtle. I no longer get mistaken for our fat cat. I have been energetic. I've accomplished some major spring cleaning, along with mucho decluttering. I'm enthused about keeping house again (did I just say that?).

I don't know if it was the regular exercising (and our dog walks are fast paced!), if I was indeed suffering from SAD which went away when spring arrived, or if it was a combination of the two. I just know, in the words of James Brown, I feel good!

Speaking of James, I only wish I could move like him. Check out his footwork in this video. Oh, and you can thank me later for getting this song stuck in your head.

I LOVE You fervently and devotedly, O Lord, my Strength.
The Lord is my Rock, my Fortress, and my Deliverer; my God, my keen and firm Strength in Whom I will trust and take refuge, my Shield, and the Horn of my salvation, my High Tower.
~Psalm 18:1-2 Amplified Bible

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Chickens & Dog Spaghetti

Er, that would be dogs, and chicken spaghetti. I'm joining up with the dog lovin' people at Dogs on Thursday this week, which basically means I get to go on and on about my dogs and you can't think any less of me. Well, you can, but I hope you won't.

So, what do you think of Pepper's new 'do'? I tried to get him to stand up on the floor so I could show you the weenie dog in him, but he wouldn't get out of this chair. Pepper pretty much does as Pepper pleases. His body is long and skinny looking, just like a weenie dog, but he has a poodle head. He'd gone so long between groomings that I had them cut him as short as possible, otherwise he'd look even more poodle'ish.

We definitely need to buy him a new collar. What's up with a hot pink collar on a boy? No wonder he's always looking sheepish.

He is a handsome boy, is he not?

Okay, enough about dogs, it's time for The Recipe Swap Box. Once a month, on the first Thursday, Randi, at "i have to say... " hosts a recipe swap on her blog. All who wish to participate post a recipe on their blog, and sign the Mr.Linky at Randi's. We can then visit each others blogs gathering new recipes, and maybe even new friends!

This month's Recipe Box Swap theme is Pasta! Since I procrastinated and didn't get around to typing up one of my recipes, it may appear to some that I'm cheating by linking to a recipe at the Pioneer Woman Cooks blog. Is there such a thing as plaguerizing a recipe? If there is, then P-dub did the plaguerizing, 'cause I've been cooking the same Chicken Spaghetti dish she shares on her site since she was in diapers.

The only thing I do differently than PW when making the Chicken Spaghetti is that I omit the chicken washing step. You read that right. I do not wash my chicken prior to cooking. I read a couple of years or so ago that it's not a necessary step, as the cooking process will destroy any surface bacteria; besides, you run more risk of spreading the salmonella around your kitchen by washing it. Anytime I'm cooking chicken, I wash my hands frequently with hot water and soap, and sanitize all areas where I've had the chicken, in case anything dripped or splashed from it on the counter.

And for the record, no one's ever gotten ill from eating my chicken spaghetti. I was kidding with the plaguerizing remark. I wouldn't want to offend PW, considering I hope to some day win one of her awesome contests. ;-)

I said that was enough about dogs, but I couldn't do a dog post without including Leyna, who is once again, dazed and temporarily blinded by mommy's flash. That's my son's hairy arm in the picture, lest you thought I needed to start shaving.

If you'd like to join in on The Recipe Box Swap, go here; or if you'd just like to read all the recipes that have been posted.

If you'd like to join in the fun with Dogs on Thursday, go here. Or just go around seeing everyone else's blogs... dogs...blogs with dogs!


A righteous man regards the life of his animal...
~Proverbs 12:10a NKJV

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Gettin' Things Done

I sometimes have to trick myself into doing what needs doing. For instance, I NEVER plan on cleaning out my fridge. The times it gets cleaned (and yes, I do clean it on occasion) is when I start looking for something in there and can't find it. By the time I've spent 30 minutes digging through umpteen butter bowls with magic marker scribbled words on them, words like "carrots", "mushroom soup", or "dog chicken" (don't ask) I start hurling things out of there faster than my dog can inhale her chicken.
Two hours later, my fridge is sparkling. The shelves are washed clean, the sticky residue has been wiped from all the jam jars, the unidentified blobs with green fur have been tossed, and decomposing veggies have been relegated to the compost bucket. The drawers have been washed, dried, and put back in their places. I can stand back proudly and announce, in the voice of Zelda Rubenstein aka Tangina Barrows, "this fridge is clean".
If I KNEW I was going to do it, I'd find some excuse to get out of it, but I trick myself into doing it. I am so clever that way.
What, you might ask, does that have to do with pictures of sock yarn? Absolutely nothing. I went for a snack while the pictures were loading, and told myself "you really need to clean out the fridge".
I love this yarn. I think I already mentioned it in a previous blog, but it bears repeating. It is so soft, just like buttuh! The colors are so pretty and spring, the season, not bouncy springy. I think I may have to trick myself into finishing these socks, though. I have too many projects going at once, and nothing finished to show.
This was an error in judgement. It's my Amanda's Squatty Sidekick, or rather, not so squatty; I cast on extra stitches to make the base a little larger than the one in the pattern. I knit it with some wool yarn I picked up for a song in a thrift store in Little Rock (received a standing ovation-no, not really). It was really old. The label was yellowed and crinkly. It had probably been sitting in some little granny's knitting basket since the '60's.
I thought there was enough of the yarn to knit this bag. I was wrong. I could kick myself. I still have the strap and the flap left to knit, and no more wool. I'll have to either knit the straps and flap with a contrasting yarn, or rip back to the base and re-knit it, alternating stripes of the green wool with stripes of a contrasting color, so the original green will go farther. I'm not really of a mind to go to that much trouble, though. As you've likely determined by the fridge story, I am somewhat lazy.
I saw the furry novelty yarn at Big Lots, and noticed it was the exact same shade of green as the wool, so I bought it to add a little pizazz to the top of the bag. It was really cheap. It doesn't help with my shortage of yarn, though. What to do, what to do?

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Pepper Saga Update:

Pepper's still with us, and it's looking likely he'll stay that way. I bet you all knew that, though.

Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.

~Psalm 37:4 NKJV

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pepper Saga-Part Deux

It's still raining here in northeast Texas, which means all photos must be taken inside. This is Pepper, looking a little shy. He's actually a beautiful dog when clipped. His former owner, my neighbor L, insisted on paying for a trip to the groomer and vet as parting gifts for Pepper. We went to the vet last week and got his shots updated, and new flea and heartworm preventative meds. We're waiting for warmer weather to arrive and stay before getting his curls shorn.
We took Leyna along for the ride. She was happy as a lark to be going on an outing. That dog's just like Mr. Studley, she loves to GO. She ran over to the lawn area where all the dogs do their 'bizness' before entering the vet. She marked the territory as hers, then happily trotted back over to us. As we opened the door for her to enter, she suddenly realized where she was. She knew this place. She'd been here before. This is the place where the mean people jabbed a needle in her hiney, and she was having no more of that! We literally had to drag her inside with all four feet sliding across the floor, as she refused to take a single step forward. Yeah, she just loves going to the vet. Not.
Pepper really does have the sweetest eyes I think I've ever seen on a dog. These pictures don't do him justice.
One of my blogging buddies, Joansie, at Knitting By The Ocean, unwittingly gave me an idea of how to pawn Pepper off get Pepper a really great new home and family. She sent me a link to Pioneer Woman's blog post yesterday. Now, if you've read PW's blog, you know she's a real sucker for dogs. All shapes and sizes, the woman does love dogs. I love them, too, but from all appearances, PW can better afford taking on a new dog than I. For the record, Joansie had no idea of the scheme I'd hatch when she sent me that link.
So, after reading PW's blog post yesterday, it occurred to me that PW would probably love Pepper. All I need to do is drive to northern Oklahoma, find PW's ranch, drop Pepper off at the end of the drive, and scoot him toward her house. Don't worry, I'll stay parked nearby until I know he's been discovered.

PW will take one look at that face and invite him right in to nap on her couch. I'm just sure of it! She might even feed him some of Charlie's food with bacon grease stirred in it.

Now, all I need are the directions to Pioneer Woman's ranch. Anyone?

PW, I wuv you!

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We are assured and know that [[a]God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.
~Romans 8:28 Amplified Bible

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Queen Wilhelmina State Park, AR. Fall '08 camping trip
It has rained all day long. I didn't mind it, though. We've had a relatively dry winter, no snow, and not a lot of rain. Today was one of those days it was pleasant to be inside. Life seemed to take a slower pace. It felt like a Sunday afternoon. Isn't it funny how different days have a different feel to them? I finished up my Hobo purse. I'm determined to take a pre-felted picture of it, but clearly the weather didn't permit. I can be patient, though.
It seems we have a new dog. I'm not terribly thrilled about it. We had many dogs for many years, and determined when we got Leyna that we'd never have more than one dog at a time again. Ever. Never ever. Sigh...never say never, and definitely not, never ever.
About a year ago, I volunteered to walk a neighbor's dog. Though I'd waved at her on the street in passing, I didn't know her. I began noticing a strange person walking her dog. Out of curiosity, I approached the stranger. It turned out she was a good friend of my neighbor, and informed me that my neighbor had become very ill, spending nearly two months in the hospital. She was back home, but destined to be an invalid due to a chronic lung condition which had worsened. Though she was able to live alone, she was no longer able to walk her dog. She was on oxygen 24/7, and only able to be up and about for a short bit before she'd lose her breath and begin coughing uncontrollably.
My neighbor, L, and I became friends over the past year. She's a very intelligent woman. She had a great job as a college library director, prior to being forced (by her health) to retire. A few months ago, her health became even worse. She began needing a lot more help. Mr. Studley and I pretty much took over the care of Pepper. We knew she was in no condition to have a dog any longer, and yet we knew that dog was her sole companion.
I encouraged her to see her doctor again, and I imagine her two good friends were doing the same. I think she put it off so long as she likely suspected the outcome-confinement in a care facility. She did finally break down and go two weeks ago. The doctor sent her straight to the hospital, as her oxygen level was dangerously low. It was determined rather quickly that she cannot live alone and manage her condition. I feel so sorry for her. She has a beautiful home filled with lovely things., which she may never even see again. Mr. Studley and I couldn't bear the idea of Pepper going to the pound, and L's friends were unable to take him, so we brought him home.
Pepper's a sweet dog, and he and Leyna play well together. I just didn't want another dog. Plus, he's long haired, which means he'll require regular grooming (an expenditure we really can't afford). He has skin allergies in the summer, requiring vet and allergy medicine bills (another expense we can't afford). He's just the sweetest thing, though. He wants nothing more than to sit in my lap. He looks up at me with those huge, sad eyes and melts my heart. Still, I don't want another dog. I have prayed about it. I asked the Lord to send us a good family who would love and spoil him, 'cause I don't want another dog!
I'd say, that's the long and short of how we got another dog, though there was nothing short in my telling of it. There never is. I've said it before, brevity is not my strong point.

If you're hungry in the market for some great soaps, click on the above link. Seriously, her soaps look good enough to eat....but don't; you wouldn't want to end up blind like Ralphie. ralphie
In celebration of opening her new web store, along with reaching her 100th blog post, this very generous lady is having a contest in which she'll award a lucky winner with $30 worth of products from her store (shipped free!). If you'd like a chance to win, go to her blog and read about it here.

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A [consistently] righteous man regards the life of his beast, but even the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
~Proverbs 12:10 Amplified Bible

Monday, March 9, 2009

This 'n' That

I've been doing some knitting, but I'll have to wait until my son gets back from a business trip before I can take pictures. He had the audacity to take his camera with him to New Orleans. Harumph!
I don't think a post is complete without pictures, so I'm resurrecting some old ones. Since we didn't get our annual ONE snowfall per year this winter, the above picture is obviously an old one. I either took it last year or the year before. I love the way Redbirds (Cardinals) stand out so brightly against the white of snow. I don't know if more of them come around when it snows, or if they're just more obvious then.

I haven't bored you with a pic of my four legged baby in awhile. This is Leyna, sleeping with her head rested on the crook of Mr. Studley's arm. Daddy, to her. This was last fall when we were camping in Arkansas. He was actually eating his dinner. She was so worn out from our hiking excursion that day that she didn't even bother begging for people food.

This is an earflap hat, fingerless mitts, and scarf set I knit for my niece a couple of years ago. Now I prefer to use the Maine Morning Mitts pattern for fingerless mitts.
Right now I'm working on a felted Hobo bag, by Pipp's Purses. I love this pattern! I've shared before how much I struggle with interpreting patterns. I am such a visual learner. Jennifer, the pattern writer, writes her patterns in such a way that even I can easily understand them. I'm on the very last step of the pattern. All I have left is a few inches of the i-cord handle, then kitchener stitching the two sides of the handle together, and that baby is ready to felt! I decided to wait to felt it until after my son returns with his camera, as I want to photograph it in it's prefelted stage. It's huge!
I'm also knitting a pair of sport socks for myself. I am loving the yarn. I bought it at JoAnn's Fabrics when I was in Ft. Worth a few weeks ago. It's the sock weight yarn from the Deborah Norville Serenity line, by Premier Yarns. It's a combination of superwash Merino wool, nylon and soft bamboo. Who knew Deborah Norville had a yarn line? The colors are so very pretty, and it's incredibly soft. I'm really enjoying knitting with it. The next test will be to see how it holds up to wear.
I'm torn between finishing my socks and starting another Hobo bag. I picked up several skeins of Lion Wool at our NEW HOBBY LOBBY recently. I live in a small town. We don't have an LYS (non-knitter readers, that's knitterese for Local Yarn Shop), so getting a Hobby Lobby was a really big deal for us. Anyway, the Lion Wool was marked on clearance for $1.99 per skein. That's $3 off their regular price per skein. I grabbed several skeins, as I'm planning on making felted handbags for Christmas gifts next year. I've now got enough yarn to do me for awhile, so I have no excuse for going back to Hobby Lobby anytime soon. Right? Rooooiiiiggghht. ;-)

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But in your hearts set Christ apart as holy [and acknowledge Him] as Lord. Always be ready to give a logical defense to anyone who asks you to account for the hope that is in you, but do it courteously and respectfully.

~I Peter 3:15 Amplified Bible