Thursday, June 30, 2011

Thankful Thursday

As my day is winding down I just want to express my gratefulness for the safe arrival of our grandson, Nolan Obadiah!  From the pictures, he sure looks like a cutie!   You’ll have to take a look at Andrea’s blog and see for yourself!  We are just so blessed to have him here and look forward to seeing him and holding him in a few weeks!

Psalm 127:3-5

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,
         The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
         So are the children of one’s youth.
Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;

Now isn’t this a perfect Thankful Thursday Post!

We Bee Swarmed

We have a bee hive.  A couple of years ago we volunteered our yard to a beekeeper so he could have  a place for extra hives.  City ordinance only allowed two.  So he put one in our yard and we purchased a hive also.  He came and tended them all summer and we got some honey at the end.  Wally “kind of learned” about beekeeping and we intended to take a class over the winter.  But over the winter something happened and our bees left the hive.  Maybe the queen died, we don’t know.  This spring it seemed like a few more bees were about the yard so we looked and sure enough, some bees have moved into the hive. 

Last week I was sitting on the back step and I heard a lot of buzzing.  I looked up to see a whole lot of bees were connected to that buzzing!  I quickly went into the house and closed the door so they would not come in.  But they were not heading toward my backdoor.  I looked and watched the bees swarm right over the area where our hive is at.  Very quickly, the sky was clear so I ventured out and peeked through the gate, behind which is the hive.  The hive was completely covered in bees.  It finally dawned on me that this swarm was moving into our hive.  It was such an amazing thing to see.  Of course I called Wally to tell him what was going on and he said bees actually have a scent and the swarm must have smelled our bees.  This is part that of the hive and the bees after they had greatly settled down. 

Then I got this great thought!  If I had only understood what was going on I would not have been afraid…because I was a little nervous.  Which led my thought to this…when we understand things in life, it takes away our fear.  But after just a minute more of thinking I realized, that is not true.  That is what we would like to convince ourselves is true, but it is deceiving. If I understood everything I would not need faith.  And even when I think I understand, how often things turn out so differently.  And sometimes “knowing” makes me all the more afraid! So my thought finally settled on this.  When I am afraid the only thing that takes that away, is to trust, to place my faith in the Lord.  He alone has all understanding.  And these honey bees, His design, are just one small display of His knowledge. 

Thursday, June 23, 2011


The two weeks we were on the road, three of our friends lost a family member.  So when we returned home I wanted to get a card made for them.  I follow a blog called Cardztv.  I have learned a lot from Mary.  She has great ideas and very good directions!  She showed a video that I knew I wanted to try and thought a sympathy card would be perfect.  It is a  twisted easel card.

This is the card laying flat…

And when you open it, it twists and stands up like an easel.  Cute, huh?

This one was almost a copycat as the one in the video.  I happened to have some paper pretty close to what she used.  And I really like the black prints together.

My only thought with these cards is I wonder if people will know how to open and swivel it.  But if they figure it out, I think it is a nice display of an encouragement from God’s Word and a reminder they are being thought of.

Mary at Cardztv also showed this card.  She said “ I suppose you all know how to make an “S” card”…nope, not me.  “But if not…”  I am so glad she did not just assume and leave it at that.  I really liked this card too and it is so easy.

And last, let me show you my Father’s Day card I sent our son-in-law, Ben. I learned how to fold the shirt from, you guessed it,  Cardztv.

And Ben even said he like his card! 

Father’s Day

We had a wonderful day with the Dads in my family on Sunday.  It’s kind of become our tradition to gather at Mom and Dad’s house and grill steaks.  So after everyone went to their own church, that is what we again did.  My sister Robin and her family live in North Glenn and it always takes them awhile to get to our family get-together.  So this year, my brother Scott came prepared…

He brought some ribs and cooked them, for the “early birds” he said!  They were good, what an appetizer!  Kind of unusual that this year, the Dads were short on kids.  Both Wally and Scott had no children present this Father’s Day. Terry had only two of his sons, Aaron and Nathan.

These are the most important Dads in my life.  A little bittersweet to realize Wally’s Dad was not here this year.  He is with our Heavenly Father!


Here is all the Dads of the Day…

Terry, Wally, Dad and Scott

And a picture of Dad and the Colorado kids…

My Mom tried to get in on the shot but was told it was just for Dad.  Her son-in-laws of course made her step away.  She put on a big pout, and Wally was quick enough to snap her picture.  (All in fun, in case you are wondering!)

So, we let her in…

BTW, can you see that green stuff behind Mom and Dad?  Its our corn!  It was a good foot high already!  Should be “knee high by the Fourth of July”!  We should have a great crop this year!

Jeremiah 17:7  “Blessed is the man who trust in the Lord, And whose hope is the Lord”

And how blessed to have men, and Fathers in my life who choose to trust and hope in the Lord.  It certainly does impact the families around them.  Thank you Dads!

Thankful Thursday

Today I am so thankful for a weeded garden!  When we returned from our trip and I took a look over the garden fence, this is what I saw…

Pretty pathetic.  So many weeds I could not even make out some of the plants.  We had some young men stay at our house while we gone and they watered and mowed (and kept Gypsy company).  The grass and flowers looked great. When we left there wasn’t much going on in the garden.  But it got real busy while we were gone, especially the weeds!  Next year if I am gone in early spring, it will be worth paying the guys to also weed the garden!

I spent a few hours every morning last week weeding.  I felt I was getting nowhere, fast.  By the time I got one area looking good and moved on, more weeds came back.  Yesterday morning before he went to work, Wally went out to the garden to help me.  He works much faster and is much stronger.  Just spending an hour out there together, I feel I have my garden back.


So much better don’t you think?  It even looks like a garden!  I keep walking back there just to have look!   And I cut the first of my lettuce and spinach! 

Monday, June 20, 2011


I have been blog distracted since we returned home.  It does take a bit to resettle and we have had house guests all week which has sidetracked me.  But I did want to end my blogs about our trip with a post of the lilacs.  It is the lilacs that drew me to Mackinac.  I had read a magazine article years ago about the lilacs and have always wanted to go.  So we decided to make it an anniversary trip since our 30th is this August.  I think we timed it about right…you can never be sure about when things will blossom.  And Mackinac is further north and colder so it is hard to gauge.

The lilacs were all over the island…at the Grand, in the town and all around the Park.

These steps are at the Grand and lead to the garden, lawn games and swimming pool.  The lilacs here were not open yet, but I can imagine walking down these steps in another week and being overcome by their fragrance! 

What amazed me was that the lilacs were more like a tree than a bush.  Around here the lilacs are taken for granted accept the couple of weeks they are in bloom.  They are just overgrown and not very attractive in people’s yards.  Also on Mackinac the lilacs are quite old. I read most are in the sixty year range but some are close to 200 years old.  It is believed that these were planted by the Jesuits.  Just look at these lilacs…

This is believed to be the oldest lilac on the island. 

And this is the top of it…

Our last morning we took a quick walk through the gardens at the Grand.  They were putting in the flowers for the summer display where the tulips had been.  We met the head gardener, she was rather young!  It was interesting to chat with her.  Here’s some advice if you have a lilac bush…she said after it blooms you cut it back by a third.  We’re going to try and train ours so it might look nicer and have more blooms.  I absolutely loved looking at the lilacs and enjoying their fragrance! 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Summer Cottages

Mackinac Island became a place to get away after the Civil War.  In 1875, it became America’s second National Park.  (BTW, Yellowstone was first)  With many people coming to the island, The Grand Hotel was built.  And soon after, summer cottages were also built.  They started out small but with the luxurious Grand Hotel established and the Victorian Era, they were remodeled becoming mansions.  They were big enough to house large families and a housekeeping staff for the summer retreats.  I just loved looking at them, the porches, yards and gardens.  Wally enjoyed the roofs, shingles and gutters! 

These are the original cottages on the bluffs

The end of the street runs into the Grand Hotel and those are lilacs on both sides of the road.  I think I would want to just stay year round in homes like these!

Biking Around

Thursday the weather improved only slightly.  The rain was gone, but it was still cloudy and kind of cold.  But we went for our bike ride anyway.  It is eight miles around the island on a paved road.  But there are many trails through the State Park.  We probably rode about thirteen miles.

Here’s some action shots of us biking…not too bad, huh?

This is British Landing, the point where the British landed---makes since, right?  Still not sure why they cam this far west in the War of 1812.  I need to read up on that War.

I thought these trees were kind of interesting, they reminded me of a spooky forest.

This is The Woods, one of the restaurants of The Grand Hotel.  It was kind of hard to find and we were hoping to have lunch there.  But we were a little early in the season, they were only open for dinner.  It had a hunting lodge theme and was pretty neat. 

It also had a bowling alley…just one.  We had planned to have lunch and bowl a game.  But since they were not doing lunch and we were starved, we passed on the bowling too.


Our first afternoon on Mackinac the weather was gorgeous.  But we woke up on Wednesday to a thunderstorm and rain.  We lazied around the hotel for a bit and then decided to take a walk.  There was a tour of the governor’s home so walked there first.  The rain returned and we took cover in one of the many horse stalls around.  I took a picture of theses lilacs during the rain.

lilacs in the rain

Waiting out the rain made us a little late for the tour and they would not let us in.  The entrance was heavily guarded by the Boy Scouts.  So we walked over to Fort Mackinac.  It was also heavily guarded by the Scouts.

It was actually used during the War of 1812.  Not sure how the War got that far west, but apparently it did!  We passed on the $10.50 per person entrance fee which would have put us in the midst of several school kids on their field trip.  We kept on walking.  Most of the Island is a National Park and very scenic.

This was Sugar Loaf, a rock formation :)  Also a very pretty overlook.

Arch Rock, another rock formation.  Also the highest point on the island with a nice view of Lake Michigan below.

Lots of pretty flowers.  This is Lady Slipper.  Really looks like a little slipper too.

And this is a little blue flower that was growing all over.  I think it is Forget Me Not.

And this little yellow flower is the dan-de-lion.  Also known as scourge of the earth…according to Wally.  We were surprised how many dandelions were growing, many already gone to seed. We wondered why they were left to grow instead of removed.

The cemetery was tucked away on one of the back roads and an old cemetery from Fort Mackinac.  They keep the flag at half staff for the unknown soldiers buried there

We circled the island and came back into town, also very picturesque.

Twice we passed this are outside of town where it looked like flowers were dumped and women were digging through the pile.  We thought maybe they were just wanting the flowers.  We found out later, the hotels and innkeepers dig up their spring bulbs and leave them there for people to take.  They usually change their designs each year and so plant new bulbs each fall.  I sure wish we had found that info out earlier, I would have brought some bulbs home. 

And we did quite a bit of lilac sniffing.

We had a nice walk about the island but were walking back to the hotel in another downpour.  As we started into the hotel door,  we were asked, “are you registered at the hotel?”  Guess they wanted to be sure we were not the riff raff we must have looked like!


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