Welcome, 2016

It's almost a brand new year.
And as always, will most likely hold surprises.
I am praying they are God-led surprises,
as those are the best kind. 
Isn't this the cutest idea for January?!
I found it on Pinterest and it's pretty and easy.
(My favorite two words with crafting!)

Be safe if you go out New Year's Eve.
Us? We'll be home watching the Tide!

Christmas 2015

 Praying yours was filled with His blessings and the
remembrance of a King that came to earth
in the form of a baby that lay in a lowly manger.
He grew, was tortured and killed by his own.
When he arose and ascended into Heaven,
he carried our sins with him
to lay at the feet of God, his Father.

Our Christmas was a nice one, a quiet one,
a day that began with heavy water fall,
startling lightening flashes, and flooding. And
ended with dinner at a daughter's home, a warm bowl of soup,
fresh from the oven cookies, and the giggles of grandbabies.
Now one begins to think of Winter and its barrenness.
Happens to be my favorite season. My very favorite!
I pray you and yours are safe, warm and grateful ~
for with all the ugly in Life, He sends gifts.
Blessings as we head toward a brand new year ~

2 Chronicles 7:14

"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."
2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV

"In the midst of our nation's struggles, crippling hurts and confusion, I lift our leaders (good and bad) to You in prayer for guidance and help. Grant us a Godly pulse beat, aligned with Your will and direction. Give us Christian leadership. Revive us spiritually. May we regain the standards we have so carelessly thrown away and once again become one nation under God. 

Cleanse our sins and heal our land, I pray. Deliver us from drugs and violence. Help our people who love You to step forth and speak out for what is right. Help our schools, our teachers, our children to keep setting new goals, dreaming new dreams, and aiming high.

Wrap Your arms around our dear country's young people and dry their tears. Lead them toward a future that is good and true. Help us to go forth as a nation, to be an example to the world, by Your love and grace.

Most of all, Lord, may I do my best to help. May the love,  kindness, and dedication begin within me.

In Jesus name, amen."

~ taken from 'When I'm On My Knees, Daily Devotional Journal by Anita Corrine Donihue, Nov 29'

I had to share this, dear readers, for it's what's been on my heart and I couldn't have said this better. Surely God inspired this Christian. I have used this devotional journal since last year and each day it becomes what I need to be reminded of. His way of letting me know how to pray, what to pray for, that He is near, in control, cares and will always fulfill His promises. I know today is not November 29 but I was going back thru pages I'd starred and His Spirit stopped me here. I pray it reaches your heart and soul as it has mine. Join me in continuing to pray for our country, our leaders and as Ms. Donihue said, let it begin with me. With us. God bless America.

Autumn Is Still UP?!?!

Yes, Autumn is still up in our household. Horrors!! That's only happened one other time, and we like to forget that December. However, we have been busy with various things you care nothing about, that with my memory I'd have to go get my calendar to fill you in. Yeah, that kind of crazy busy.

And I had to, HAD TO, finish painting the hall. The back hall that I've been working on since, well, since last Autumn. I think. Pretty sure. So I was determined not to put up Autumn and pull out her Christmas dress until that hall was painted! And trimmed! Trimmed twice, as a matter of fact. I had no idea how marked up doors, facings, and baseboards get marked up! Man!

I would post pictures to prove to you, but they're the same ones you have already seen {Rolling Eyes font} like in, September, maybe?!?! But I CAN show you some ideas I plan to implement next week! Because I plan to finish painting the hall this weekend! Drag out the HuGe container that holds Autumn and clean the house. Then, I can begin unpacking closets and boxes and containers and make the Hood go up in the attic for the greenery and wreaths. Aaaaaah, makes me happy just thinking about it.

Oh, and this year I get to add the pieces I bought from Southern Born hand crafting!! You can find them by clicking on the name or going to septemberbornshop.etsy.com. We love the pieces we've purchased and he is making us a customized dining room table, so yes, I highly recommend them. I'll be sure to point what I purchased once this house is dressed in her finery. (Oh, I miss the icons. I could use a Christmas tree one right now!)
 I plan to try this for the buffet table in our breakfast room.
Already collecting the older bibles that have been passed
down and other small hymnals.
And I'm thinking this for the mantel.
Not the usual silk greenery I use or the ribbon,
but I love the natural look of it and it'll go
through Winter well.
And this photo down here?!
I'm a child of the King and I love that He gave
me a love for snow and cardinals. This photo, found
on Pinterest, says it all. sigh ~ 
blessings to you and yours.

Bits & Pieces

Life can be complicated. Easy. Hard. Complex and, yet, there's always someone or something that causes me to smile. It's usually then that I remember the One that formed me also set the stars in the sky and knows me better than I know myself. We all have our hurts, pain, and memories we'd love to forget. But along with those are the tender, precious, beloved memories we pray not to ever let slip from our minds. This past year has brought many emotions, along with finding more about life, God, and the sifting of friends I've known for decades and some I've only met the last few years. Each special in a season of my life. Some have gone on. Some have stayed. Some have backed off for one reason or another. It's Life. And it's expected.

He never backs off. We do, but He doesn't. He's always there, waiting for us to call upon Him to praise Him, need Him, or just want to rest within His love. I am a very thankful child of a very loving King. His Spirit teaches me and helps me understand so that forgiveness comes easy. Life is good, as long as I'm closely aligned with Him. Aaaaannnddd, He knows just how much I love

SNOW! It snows very little where we live. (Did I say 'very'?) We see more ice. Maybe it will snow this year?! Probably NOT. So, with that, here some photos of past snows, sweet babies and memories from the heart ~

snow covered rooftop
Our home, January 2008
Snow! On Christmas Day!
Oh, sweet 'laina. Barely three years old.
My princess.
A trip to Gatlinburg in February 2009. Snow, snow, snow!
The smile is genuine.
And at The Park in March '09!
I was in heaven. Beautiful.
giggling over Nelson and John
Back in the 'burg, Fall 2010, looking for snow and finding it.
And blessed with another baby girl ~
sweet babygirl & her daddy
ElleBelle was headed toward her second birthday here with her Daddy.
Our Mississippi babies
We moved to the Coast in 2011, so there was sand.
Not snow. But we got some Winter loving.
They got snow and so did Gulf Shores! What excitement!
The beaches were covered with snow and ice.
It was also the first time I learned that hearing pinetree limbs cracking
and falling off the trees was NOT fun! It meant clean up.
 We were blessed with a new grandson.
Sweet Owen celebrated his first birthday that Spring.
Snow and a first birthday within months of each other.
Another decade for me this year
and the hopes that it WILL snow before 2016.
It does NOT look like it'll happen, but one can hope!
~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~
Have an awesome week, snow or no snow!!

I'm in Love ~

on december first, i consider winter to be here!!
i love winter, with autumn a very close second.
praying you've had a great two day start for the month
and check back for tablescapes, recipes, decorating tips
and beautiful free printables. along with christmas hymns
and poetry. i love it. i just love this season. hello, dear december!

~ from The Letter Writer ~

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