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2 05, 2013

The National Day of Prayer

By |2013-05-02T05:03:35-05:00May 2nd, 2013|Uncategorized|2 Comments

LARGE-POSTERIn 1952, the United States Senate designated the first Thursday in May as a National Day of Prayer.

A day set aside when Americans of all faiths gather in prayer in front of courthouses, houses of worship, mosques, synagogues, and temples. Communities schedule luncheons, picnics, and music performances revolving around praying for our nation.

Click here to find a celebration near you: http://nationaldayofprayer.org/events/

The theme for today’s 62nd annual observance of National Day of Prayer is “Pray for America.” At noon today, Honorary Chairman Pastor Greg Laurie will offer this prayer:

“Father, we come to You to pray for our nation, the United States of America.

How You have blessed us through the years, Lord! We rightly sing, “America, America, God shed His grace on thee.” Yet we see trouble in our culture today. We see the breakdown of the family, crippling addictions, and random acts of horrific violence.

Lord, we need Your help in America. In recent days, we have done our best to remove Your Word and Your counsel from our courtrooms, classrooms and culture. It seems, as President Lincoln once said, that we have “forgotten God.” But Lord, You have not forgotten us! You can bless and help and revive our country again.

Scripture tells us that “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). Lord, in Your mercy, we ask that You would exalt our country again. We have had a number of great awakenings in America. We have experienced times of refreshing, and revivals that changed not only the spiritual but also the moral landscape. As the psalmist said, “Will You not revive us again, so that Your people may rejoice in You?” (Psalm 85:6)

That is our prayer for America today, Lord. Send a mighty spiritual awakening that will turn the hearts of men and women, boys and girls back to you. You have told us if we will humble ourselves and pray, and seek Your face and turn from our wicked ways, that You will forgive our sins and heal our land. (2 Chronicles7:14)

Forgive us today, Lord, and heal this troubled land that we love so much.

We ask all of this in the name of Jesus Christ.”

The National Day of Prayer is a vital part of our heritage. A day when people of all faiths can pause and pray for our nation and our leaders.

nationaldayofprayer

I believe we can do nothing more important and encourage everyone, no matter what his or her religious preference, to join me today.

1 05, 2013

One Word Wednesday – ACTION

By |2013-05-01T06:38:45-05:00May 1st, 2013|one word Wednesday, writer, writing|2 Comments

Action

For merchandise with this one word motivation: http://www.squidoo.com/one-word-quotes#module154058087

“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”   ~St. Francis of Assisi~

Novels begin with the first word on the page or computer screen.

ACTION on your part gets that first word there.

30 04, 2013

Tipping Point The Final Phase

By |2013-04-30T07:04:08-05:00April 30th, 2013|Tuesday Tipping Point|3 Comments

Our downsizing journey, which began in the fall of 2012, ended on a balmy day in March.

Unloading1

Unloading2

Once the truck and van were unloaded, the real fun work began—finding places for all we’d brought with us. Even though we’d culled and tossed, we still found duplicates and extras.

Stuff1

stuff3

Four weeks later, all the stuff has a home. There are no boxes on the front porch or in the house. 

We ended up repacking many boxes. Some to store for a garage sale this summer. Some to our church’s thift shop.

old

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Lastly we swapped  the dining room chandelier for one we’ve had in every home since 1972.

We’re finally home.

There are still a few last touches to complete.

  • A new storage shed so my husband can have his workshop back.

jeffshed

Jerry shed

workshed

  • A garage – can’t survive Colorado winters without a place for the cars.

cars4

  • A master bedroom addition above the garage so there’s plenty of room for company to visit.

Overall, our transition from urban living to simplified mountain top living is complete. We don’t miss the traffic, the fast food, or the noise. We love watching the wildlife from our bay window as we sip our morning coffee, our long walks on the forest trails, and the clean mountain air.

Life is good.

29 04, 2013

My choice for April Poetry Month. What’s yours?

By |2018-04-13T16:01:52-05:00April 29th, 2013|poetry|0 Comments

April is National Poetry Month. All month Poets.org has provided opportunities and activities to celebrate poetry and poets.

I couldn’t let the celebration pass without posting one of my favorite poems about a realio, trulio, little pet dragon named Custard.

custard the dragon

I read Ogden Nash’s poem to my children so often they memorized it

The Tale of Custard the Dragon

Belinda lived in a little white house,
With a little black kitten and a little gray mouse,
And a little yellow dog and a little red wagon,
And a realio, trulio, little pet dragon.

Now the name of the little black kitten was Ink,
And the little gray mouse, she called hum Blink,
And the little yellow dog was sharp as Mustard,
But the dragon was a coward, and she called him Custard.

Custard the dragon had big sharp teeth,
And spikes on top of him and scales underneath,
Mouth like a fireplace, chimney for a nose,
And realio, trulio daggers on his toes.

Belinda was as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chased lions down the stairs,
Mustard was as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard cried for a nice safe cage.

Belinda tickled him, she tickled him unmerciful,
Ink, Blink and Mustard, they rudely called him Percival,
They all sat laughing in the little red wagon
At the realio, trulio, cowardly dragon.

Belinda giggled till she shook the house,
and Blink said Weeck! which is giggling for a mouse,
Ink and Mustard rudely asked his age,
When Custard cried for a nice safe cage.

Suddenly, suddenly they heard a nasty sound,
And Mustard growled, and they all looked around.
Meowch! cried Ink, and Ooh! cried Belinda,
For there was a pirate, climbing in the winda.

Pistol in his left hand, pistol in his right,
And he held in his teeth a cutlass bright,
His beard was black, one leg was wood;
It was clear that the pirate meant no good.

Belinda paled, and she cried Help! Help!
But Mustard fled with a terrified yelp,
Ink trickled down to the bottom of the household,
And little mouse Blink strategically mouseholed.

But up jumped Custard snorting like an engine,
Clashed his tail like irons in a dungeon,
With a clatter and a clank and a jangling squirm,
He went at the pirate like a robin at a worm.

The pirate gaped at Belinda’s dragon,
And gulped some grog from his pocket flagon,
He fired two bullets, but they didn’t hit,
And Custard gobbled him, every bit.

Belinda embraced him, Mustard licked him,
No one mourned for his pirate victim.
Ink and Blink in glee did gyrate
Around the dragon that ate the pirate.

But presently up spoke little dog Mustard,
I’d been twice as brave if I hadn’t been flustered.
And up spoke Ink and up spoke Blink,
We’d have been three times as brave, we think,
And Custard said, I quite agree
That everybody is braver than me.

Belinda still lives in her little white house,
With her little black kitten and her little gray mouse,
And her little yellow dog and her little red wagon,
And her realio, trulio little pet dragon.

Belinda is as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chase lions down the stairs,
Mustard is as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard keeps crying for a nice safe cage.

I do love Ogden Nash for the nonsensical, humorous way in which he poked fun at the problems of American life in his poems.

Reviewers of his work often criticized him for taking liberties with spelling and rhyme. Things like “If called by a panther/Don’t anther.” Liberties with words that I find delightful.

I relate because I have this habit of adding things to names. Brooke becomes Brook E, Abby – Abby Me Gail, Faith – Faith-e-foo, Morgan-Morgan from org, Landry-Landy Pandy, J.B.-J.Beetle, Sara-Sa-RA, Steph-Stefoney, etc.

To me, nonsensical words and names are fun.

I hope you enjoyed The Tale of Custard the Dragon. If you’d like to read other poems by Ogden Nash, check out this chronological list of all his work: http://www.ogdennash.org/ogden_nash_titles.htm  

26 04, 2013

New to Miller Farm

By |2013-04-26T06:55:33-05:00April 26th, 2013|Friday on the Miller Farm, Miller Farm Friday|4 Comments

by Guest Blogger Chicken Wrangler Sara

Rachel went to a birthday party recently for a set of twins she babysits. Their grandmother wanted to purchase some bantam chicks from Rachel (which of course, she has) so she carried two chicks in a box with her to the party.

She returned a couple of hours later with a different box and said, “Mom, come see my babies.”

I was confused, as usual.  Had she brought the bantam chicks back home?

I looked inside the box and discovered her new babies were baby rabbits, not chicks.

baby rabbits

Rachel found them abandoned in the yard where the party took place.They don’t even have their eyes open yet, but they make noise just like a squeaky toy, which was driving the dachshunds crazy.

The momma rabbit was nowhere to be found, and the four babies were in danger of starving. Something Rachel could not allow.

Becoming rabbit rescuer Rachel, she loaded the babies into the box then stopped to purchase formula and syringes on the way home so she could feed the rabbits every two hours.

This morning a friend brought her boys over to Miller Farm to see the chickens and quail. Little did my friend know that today we would also have baby rabbits. 

Every day is an adventure here on Miller Farm.

24 04, 2013

One Word Wednesday – Poetry

By |2013-04-24T07:58:19-05:00April 24th, 2013|one word Wednesday|7 Comments

April is National Poetry Month. That’s why I chose Poetry for our word today.

I read in Cynthia R. Green’s blog “A Mad Obsession’: Poetry on the Brain that poetry is a good way we can keep our brains challenged and vibrant.

To quote Dr. Green: “Numerous studies have shown that intellectually engaging activities such as reading or writing poetry can be critical to maintaining our mental acuity and potentially reducing our risk for dementia over our lifetimes.”

Here’s a Writing Prompt from Edie Melson’s The Write Conversation to stimulate your brain today.

Poetry of Life

Now go read or write a poem.

23 04, 2013

Tipping Point Phase 3 – The Saga continues with a hiccup!

By |2013-04-23T08:00:58-05:00April 23rd, 2013|Tuesday Tipping Point|0 Comments

Our downsizing journey began in the fall of 2012. If you haven’t been following the saga, you can catch up on Phase 1 and Phase 2.

We planned to leave on our new adventure after the New Year and be settled in our Colorado home by spring.

Our son and his wife came to help us, selected furniture they wanted to stay in the family. That’s Wendy’s head above the open box on the floor. Packing with Wendy

After they left, the months betwixt and between our anticipated departure date found our thoughts focused on the new place when reality was living in the old place that no longer resembled our home. ???????????????????????????????We’d find ourselves going to a cabinet to put something where it had lived for thirty-three years only to realize that that cabinet was no longer there!

It now lived in our son’s home.

Every thing was on schedule until Mother Nature threw a curve into our plans. Sub-zero temperatures in Colorado created an electrical outage at our destination home.

Unfortunately, when the electricity returned, our furnace didn’t reignite. Pipes froze. Four pipes burst. ???????????????????????????????

We quit packing our Houston house, drove to Colorado, and found:?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? Living - hall (2)Amazingly, tear-out went smoothly and restoration was fast. Replacement floors arrived as promised. The house was ready for the arrival of our daughter and her family for spring break. While they played in the snow, we returned to Houston and finished packing.

Finally, on a ninety-degree day in March, we pulled away from the home we’d lived in for thirty-three years. With all our worldly possessions loaded into a trailer and a U-Haul, we headed to our new home in the Rio Grande National Forest where the final phase of our adventure began. vans pulling out2More about that next Tuesday.

22 04, 2013

How can we help West, Texas?

By |2013-04-22T06:50:29-05:00April 22nd, 2013|Make Me Think Monday|3 Comments

 In a week filled with horrific events, West, a small Texas town 19 miles north of Waco, experienced a fiery explosion at the Texas fertilizer plant located there. Fourteen people, mostly volunteer firefighters who rushed to the fire at the plant, died. Two hundred people were injured, and dozens of homes and businesses were destroyed.

west

Click these links to see the details, if you missed the news reports.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/key-facts-plant-explosion-west-texas-18990641

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/04/20/west-fertilizer-plant-explosion-recovery/2099591/

Rachel Firasek, an author who is a member of the West Community, shared the following first-hand account:

“I wanted to give everyone an update. I actually live about 10 miles away, but my children go to school in West and my husband grew up there. We felt the blast all the way at our house. The noise was deafening, even that far away. We’re still desperately waiting for word on names of the fallen. I know that my hubby has already lost one cousin and a very good friend is in critical condition.

We lost three of the four schools. The only thing left is the elementary school. My kids will finish the school year at schools 30 miles away. It’s going to be a hectic next few weeks for all of our family and friends, but this is a tight community and they are already rallying.
 

Please don’t feel obligated, but thanks for anything you can do for these families.”

So how can we help West, Texas?

Authorities said Friday that charitable organizations have received more donations of food, clothing and other items than are needed in West. Excess donations will be distributed to surrounding areas.

Cash donations to the Red Cross or the Salvation Army would be welcome.

With schools destroyed, donations to the education program are desperately needed. Rachel provided this link with for details.

Other places to donate and help:

  1. Donate to West Fire Department – mail donations to:
    West Fire Department, PO Box 97, West, TX 76691
  2. Donate to the victims – PointWest Bank: POINTWEST Bank – Home Page
  3. Donate Blood – during the next few months schedule appointment to donate blood. Blood will be needed and it has a limited shelf life. Go to Donating Blood | American Red Cross for additional information and to find a location near you.
  4. Contact donation facilities for specific items still needed at this time:
    Extraco Events Center (254) 776-1660
    First Baptist Church of Lott (254) 829-2321
    **packing materials are going to be needed when the families can enter their homes again

Medical help for animals is also needed. Contact these area animal clinics for specifics:

  1. Happy Endings Animal Clinic 254-666-8240
  2. Brazos Valley Boarding Kennels 254-854-4104
  3. La Vega Vet Clinic 254-744-1948

And for those who want to share a word on social media sites:

 https://www.facebook.com/PrayersforWest

https://www.facebook.com/WestFirefighters

Anything you can do, especially prayers, in this devastating time will be welcomed.

19 04, 2013

Chivalry in the Chicken World

By |2013-04-19T07:08:07-05:00April 19th, 2013|Friday on the Miller Farm, Miller Farm Friday|0 Comments

A Post by Friday’s Guest Blogger Chicken Wrangler Sara

Meet Elliot our bantam rooster.

Elliott

He is quite a character and has been assured a place in the flock by having a name.  He does crow, but not loud enough to disturb the neighbors yet.

One of the reasons Elliot earned a name is his CHIVALRY.

Dictionary.com defines chivalry as the sum of the ideal qualifications of a knight, including courtesy, generosity, valor, and dexterity in arms.

Chivalry isn’t often thought about in a barnyard, but Rachel pointed out Elliot’s kindness to his hens.  She saw him jump up and get some leaves off a low hanging branch and set them on the ground.

Then he crowed for all the hens to come help themselves, definitely Knightly behavior.

Chivalry is alive and well in the chicken world. At least on the Miller Farm.

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