Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Well said, Carrie Jean!

A few posts back, I alluded to the ministry I work with, and offered a link to the first part of Ken Sande's talk on Thursday at the annual conference in Orlando --

Well, my friend and former co-laborer, Carrie Jean has given her reaction and response to her time at this year's conference in a recent blog post. It usually takes a few days to get this kind of perspective, after attending a conference - it really is unique in its effect.Tomorrow, I look forward to our weekly staff gathering, when each person is given the opportunity to express a story or experience from the conference, that made an impact on their life. I know from my own past experiences that this time will be sweet -- and lifted up as praise to our Lord, for His goodness and grace.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook

Outside My Window... a panoramic view of our city; local businesses at the forefront - sandstone rimrocks at the northern edge;

I am thinking... that life is good because God is good;

I am thankful for.... over 600 attendees at our ministry's annual conference; and for safe return of several co-laborers - it was getting pretty quiet here.

From the kitchen... a half bottle of Riesling - Dad's fresh tomatos - clean window valance - swept floor - available countertop....

I am wearing... white top with striped capris and tennis shoes.

I am creating...a wonderful group of friends on Facebook.

I am reading... A Blossom in the Desert by Miriam Huffman Rockness

I am hoping... to listen to and watch the teaching from the conference, with other friends and neighbors.

I am hearing... laughter and conversations

Around the house... A more uncluttered look to my bedroom as a result of a major assault on Saturday;

One of my favorite things... Table Fellowship with gal friends following Sunday worship.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: To enjoy autumn in the great outdoors; time to meet and get to know pastors and leaders from our regional presbytery; celebrate a sweet sister's 37th wedding anniversary.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing:

A fishing stream near Missoula, Montana

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our finest hour...

So, this year I was on the "home team" for Peacemaker Ministries - which means that I, along with a core few (Jon, Becca and Jo) held down the fort for the Billings office, while the majority served the guests at our annual conference in Orlando, Florida.

I have been able to attend the last five conferences, and each of these begins with a keynote address from our President, Ken Sande. A friend has linked the video for the first part of his Thursday evening address - I encourage you to watch this segment and follow up with the next segments when they are offered.

Before leaving work on Friday, my co-laborer related a story from the conference that he had heard. A woman who was intent on a divorce from her husband prior to Ken's talk - was later intent on contacting a judge on Monday to reverse that option.

I'm always amazed at how the Spirit works in people's hearts as they hear the Word preached - and how that work has an amazing impact on not only their lives, but is a testimony for others' struggles as well. I'm also thankful for her change in perspective....

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday Links

One of the blogs I frequently visit is ConnorWatch - which provides daily updates of Connor's recovery from a diving accident this summer.

A while ago, his family began going through the alphabet - and on a daily basis, assign an attribute of God for that day's letter. They then invite their readers and commenters to add other attributes using the day's letter.

So, yesterday's letter was "V." Now, the newest change for Connor is his ability to use a computer, even though he shows little movement response yet below his chin -

Here is what Connor was able to put into the computer for a "V" attribute of God.

V is for Victor. Jesus defeated Satan at the cross, and because of that we don't have to be afraid of him anymore. The Bible says that "greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world", and James 4:7 says to resist the devil and he will flee. So because Jesus is our Victor, He gives us power - power over the world, power over our sin, power over our enemy.

Thank you for giving up your precious time to pray and to check up on me.

Love, Connor"

Once again, I know Connor and his family would covet your prayers...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Teacher time

So, a commenter begat a favorite, and my visit to that favorite today begat a jump to this blog...

Whether you are a teacher (Rachel, Anne, Tara...) a poet or literature bug (Melodee, Amanda, Molly, Hannah...) - I hope this inspires and encourages you today.

Simple Woman's Daybook

Outside My Window... Storm clouds a gatherin' with patches of blue

I am thinking...that parenting is the hardest job in the world...and requires much love and support from others.

I am thankful for.... the blessings our country provides; the first day of fall.

From the kitchen... Fresh tomatoes from dad's garden - and pears from the Farmer's Market.

I am wearing...khaki capris, green top with bead design and tan sweater

I am creating...a hospitable home for friends, family, and neighbors.

I am reading... Singing through the Night by Anneke Companjen.

I am hoping...my daughter may create a homey atmosphere in Helena.

I am hearing...computer keyboard tapping - very quiet this Monday morning.

Around the house...quiet, peaceful after my daughter and grandson's visit last week.

One of my favorite things... is getting to know the families in our church. Yesterday I was blessed with the company of Brook, Ian and Cameron.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: so many areas to organize and clean; my bedroom area is a priority for this week. Yard and lawn cleanup.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing:Misty and Trask at Tot Land in Big Timber, Montana.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

U of M campus highlights

I first enjoyed the University of Montana campus, as a freshman in the early 1970s. This was my freshman dorm, Corbin Hall,
an all girl's dorm - with dorm mothers, evening curfew, and restricted male visitors. We enjoyed Star Trek each evening after supper in front of the dorm lobby television and held candle ceremonies to celebrate any and all engagements -- I even remember the traditional song was "Tell Me Why" sung in beautiful harmony for the couple- here are the lyrics:

Tell me why the stars do shine.
Tell me why the ivy twines.
Tell me why the sky's so blue,
And I will tell you just why I love you.

Because God made the stars to shine.
Because God made the ivy twine.
Because God made the sky so blue.
Because God made you, that's why I love you!

Continuing my walking tour, I came to Main Hall, which rests beneath Mount Sentinel or "the M". Third floor housed the office of Information Services (centered beneath the clock), where I worked each week for 15 hours allowed by the work study program. I have many great memories of the wonderful staff I worked with that first year of college, including my older sister, who was completing college as I was beginning. Just behind Main Hall is the University Center (UC) Commons, which has been expanded much since my days at U of M. I marveled not only at the beautiful plants, ...but the variety of places to eat -- totally unknown in my day :)

Jay Rummel, a singer-songwriter, and artist, painted a spectacular mural located on the second floor of the UC Commons, entitled "Five Valleys Trilogy." The mural depicts, in amazing detail and psychedelic style, many legendary people and events of western Montana, and specifically, Missoula and Hellgate Canyon historyEddie's Club, featured in this portion of the mural, was a downtown hangout where students rubbed elbows with local characters...while this portion portrayed Chief Joseph, who surrenderd, along with many from the Nez Pearce tribe, to the infantry at Fort Missoula in the 1870s.

Finally, I admit confusion on just how many new buildings have been added to the campus. Here is the newest one being built - for the Education Department. I liked the view of the hills, between the levelsMy son phoned as I returned to my car; we made lunch plans at the Old Post downtown, as Sunday continued on...

Did you miss me?

So, I have been away from computer, email, internet for about four days, and can't say that I missed being away (no withdrawal problems, here :).

My first day of travel was to Missoula, where I would spend the weekend - with a Sunday evening worship service being the main intent for the trip.

I set out after work in my rented, blue Subaru Forester -- a smooth ride with the necessary rpm to cross several mountain passes that evening.

By Big Timber (80 miles), I was able to gaze on the Crazies, but needed to get back on the road to reach Missoula at a decent hour. Since radio signals wax and wane after a mere 40 or so miles, I relied on a variety of eclectic music to help my energy and provide contemplative background to the wonderful Montana scenery; still prairie at this location -- and then, a glimpse of the Yellowstone River

Driving between Bozeman and Butte, I was sampling photos of the setting sun amidst the clouds...
while going over Homestake Pass, I tried to capture the rock formations (elevation 6356 ft)
More to come....

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Love those Links

I'm sure you all have your favorite links -- and have many ways to organize and/or find those sites.

Here are a few that I browse during my week:

The BBC News Online - their Day in Pictures is one of those sites. The photographs may be of a current event - usually featuring an international array of people and places - and are high quality photographs.

I have no idea how I hopped to Frugal Dad; but there he was one day. His site offers hope and information for our finances,and that is a worthy cause in our country today. He speaks as "one who has been there" in making financial mistakes in his life. I admit to reading his blog to keep me on track in my budgeting and saving, etc. - affirm what I already know, and remind me of where I have been...

...and as with Pray for Ian on my sidebar -- Connor is another young man trying to overcome the physical obstacles following an accident. I'm sure Ian, Connor and their families would appreciate your prayers and support. Later this month will be 2 years since Ian's car accident - going through the early, intense days in ICU, later in a rehab center, and continuing his recovery at home; Connor's diving accident happened earlier this summer, and he is currently in a rehab facility.

So, whether it be a fresh perspective from my seat here in Montana with BBC -- or a thankful heart for my physical or financial "health," these are welcome sites.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook - September 8th

Ahhhh...another week, another Monday, another daybook meme:

Outside My Window... blue sky, with wispy, white and smoke-colored clouds; green maple leaves dancing in the breeze.

I am thinking... that I miss my daughter, but am also glad for her...

I am thankful for.... a wonderful job and co-laborers who care...

From the kitchen...something by Bertoli tonight; same ingredients for muffins and biscotti are waiting to be whisked and folded..

I am wearing.....casual as usual -- even walking shoes

I am creating... a flexible and fun travel scenario for the weekend
I am reading ... "A Light In The Window," by Jan Karon

I am hoping... to complete many details and tasks today.

I am hearing... the whir of the computer, the printer spitting out page after page...

Around the house... the piano is happy after being exercised more diligently; recent rains mean grass needs to be mowed; marigolds could be repotted or actually added to a flower bed. Garage door added before the snows begin?

One of my favorite things... is to have friends over to visit and to share a meal - blessings upon blessings; cozy warm now that we're reaching overnight 40s.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: Travel to western Montana; worship with friends who have begun a church plant that I support; Visit with my daughter and grandson; Enjoy hiking in the beautiful end-of-summer outdoors

Here is a picture thought I am sharing:
Adam and Boaz with "the wedding frog."
Please check out the original Simple Woman here

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Soul Satisfying Sunday

* Galatians small group in Sunday School
* Knowing God is sovereign over a-l-l things
* Holding baby Ethan
* Sharing wedding reception photos
* Manicotti, fellowship and ice cream
* Man From Snowy River music
* A bit of John Denver memory
* Rain...rain...rain
* God's grace in Jody's life
* Practicing music on my grandmother's piano

Saturday, September 6, 2008

A great cause

Ruthie, at Nature Knitter, is auctioning off a beautiful hat she just completed. Those benefitted by her, and the purchaser's generosity, are children from an orphanage in the Ukraine (an area close to my heart - both family and missional-wise)

Thank you, Ruthie, for using your talent to help others.

Friday, September 5, 2008

More Netflix

It was w-a-y back in June when I last posted about a Netflix movie selection that I had enjoyed.
So, this time, I simply copied off my rental history for anyone in need of a movie idea - that is "usually" quite good (I rated 95% of these three stars or more :)
-if you know Netflix, as you select a movie or tv series you're interested in knowing more about, this appears
Average of raters like you: 3.0 stars
Average of 157,427 ratings: 3.6 stars

Sometimes I shake them up, but they seem to know me well....

Some of my selections have been movie referrals from trusted family and friends; a lot are from Netflix suggestions, based on movies I've already rented, and a very few from movie trailers.
I like to mix some (limited) television series in, as they are both nostalgic and easy to watch - because the first few seasons are "usually" the best, one or two discs are all I select.

My plan is almost the cheapest per month - the one-at-a-time choice, because I find more than two movies per week to be too many.

So, here they are - enjoy any or all of them...

The Inn of the Sixth Happiness, 1958

The Second Chance, 2006

Once, 2006

7th Heaven: Season 1: Disc 1, 1996

The Best of Match Game: Disc 1, 1973

House of Cards Trilogy I: House of Cards, 1990

Sense and Sensibility, 1981

Children of Men, 2006

Hot Fuzz, 2007

Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, 1992

Where Angels Fear to Tread, 1991

The Remains of the Day, 1993

Breach, 2007

Spartan, 2004

A Mighty Heart, 2007

Fierce Creatures, 1997

A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 1999

Thursday, September 4, 2008

J.R. and Molly's Day - The Music and Dancers

Tim announced that the dance floor was open to the married couplesNancy and Ernie headed to the dance floor...and the floor filled quicklyFannie and Bill are great dancers...and Susan and Rich always enjoy a few turnsThe band switched tunes, and the younger set joined inJill and Frank could follow the country beat...as could Emma and JeffA great opportunity for Rebekah to show Sy what she knows...as her parents, Marilyn and Christian do their own thingKerri was successful in getting her son, Adam, out on the dance floor...but Stephanie could not budge Jared to do the sameAnother mother and son -- Ben is getting with it...but the music may be a bit loud for Donna...I know that was the opinion of these brothers :)The band kept the dancers moving throughout the evening...
and thrilled the youngest set by letting them play alongAnd what wedding dance would be complete without the Conga....

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

My Gold Card

Anne, of Palm Tree Pundit fame, was nice enough to pass on this blogging Gold Card. Thank you! -- and this card won't hurt my slowly climbing credit score either :)

Here are my loyal, blogging friends, who encourage me often -- and that I pass the baton on to -- simply follow these meme rules:

1. Only 5 people allowed.
2. 4 have to be dedicated followers of your blog
3. one has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world.
4. you must link back to whoever gave you the award.

I hereby pass this award along to:

Beth - her blog shows a passion and love of family, the mountains, nature and wild life, and the state of Maine in general. I discovered her blog by jumping from another blog, as is my custom, and have her on my blog list to the right. I love that our states are both northern US states, but far apart in the east-west direction. She inspires me both in her thoughtful writing and blog comments, and in her care for her family (and blog friend) relationships. My goal is to explore our own nearby Beartooth Mountains or other Montana locales, so that I can share some pictures (and the accomplishments) with her.

Amanda, is a Christian sister, and a kindred spirit in friendships and fellowship, reading and writing, cooking and eating. She has more than one blog - in her other blog, she posts pictures and journal entries, from her mission time and relationships in Uganda - among the Karamajong people (which, I hope, identifies her as someone from another part of the world). I'm so pleased that she has followed through with her writing talent, and still hope to hear of a completed and published novel in the future :)

Trixie's blog allows me a free trip to Alaska any time I want, to explore the region, enjoy the wildlife, and get to know her amazing family and blog friends. Trixie loves birds, and cares for their feeding needs, even when the snow is deep, and her life is busy.

Julie and I have been co-laborers for the Lord until very recently. She is, indeed, a hidden treasure,who will take many years to "mine" in friendship and fellowship. We also share a passionate love for our families, and especially enjoy the role of aunt. Julie will, no doubt, continue to be an important support and help to her hubby, Steve, as they minister together, and extend the Lord's kingdom.

And then there is Tara, my newcomer to the blog -- but someone I've known for the past 9 years or so. Tara is a gifted and loving lady -- in her career and ministry, her parenting, her home in general - especially organization -- and her fellowship and teaching in our local church. Our early Friday morning ladies group, began with the idea of reading through Tara and Judy's book, Peacemaking Women, and remains one of the best books we've studied, in my humble opinion ;)

So, friends, now it's your turn. I hope you will enjoy both the exercise and the promotion of blogging. I also encourage any lurkers to comment occasionally - you may be included in a new meme....

Adam & Hannah's Wedding Reception

 These three girls are a little older as we speak - I'm sorry for the delay in posting the wedding reception photos. Theresa, Sophia and Grace are good friends, and blessed me as they posed so nicely before the ceremony.

This wedding was undoubtedly Noah Boll's first...

The wedding reception was held at The Depot, a wonderfully refurbished passenger train station. Note the wood dance floor, which is larger than the usual postage stamp size offered at most receptions. When it gets too warm inside, or you want a break from the music, there is a platform outside for visiting and enjoying the night air.

I had the opportunity to take a four generation picture that evening, which included my father, brother, nephew and grand-nephew

The father and bride dancing
...and the cutting of the cake...

Family traveled from Pennsylvania, the Denver area, St. Louis, Idaho, and areas of Montana,to celebrate with Adam and Hannah
...and dancing was enjoyed by the very young and those who seldom dance...
And once the music stopped, we relocated to a local tavern for more music and fun. Here are the "guy" cousins at the end of a l-o-n-g day