Showing posts from August, 2014


I know it's not original but, whether I have something planned or not, I Love Weekends. Sadly, they never seem to be long enough. This weekend isn't yet half over but there have been a number of projects on the go ...

On the rack (that sounds like some medieval torture!): This morning The Most Adorable Granddaughters in the World#4 and #5 helped me do baking. After mixing up a batch of spelt and rye sourdough, we made spelt ANZAC biscuits. (In case you're wondering DIL#2, they each had a biscuit -Daddy's fault - and spelt toast with marmalade - blame Grandpa for that! - and a quarter of a cup of blueberries and four mandarins each for 'morning tea' - and The Most Adorable Granddaughter#5 also ate mandarin skin since she peeled it with her teeth and was totally perplexed when Nana told her to spit it out!) I've been enjoying baking with spelt. I like the taste and that it's so much easier to adapt to use in traditional recipes than most gluten-free flours…

Day 100: All

Rightly or wrongly, I've been waiting for something special to finish up 100 Days of Gratitude. What then could be more perfect than being thankful for all the family being together? Something that has not happened since ... well I'm not sure when it last occurred.

This particular occasion was to celebrate the second birthday of The Most Adorable Granddaughter in the World#5. Yes, our precious wee girl, is turning two this coming week. Who could forget that weekend two years ago when we had a combined engagement/twenty-first birthday party and a small bundle of joy (less than four pounds!) decided it was time to meet the rest of the family?

She is still a bundle of joy and we had a wonderful time celebrating yesterday.

I'm also grateful that DH got to go "spotlighting" with all five of our sons last night (while DIL#3 and I watched movies and waited up). I cannot remember the last time all six got together for some "male bonding". However, apart from mu…

S is for ... Knitting

Knitting socks, shawls, scarves and shawlettes, that is.

Although I do seem to have gone off the boil when it comes to knitting socks. I finished two pairs - yes, two! - several weeks ago and one pair has yet to be worn. The other pair has been worn once.

Not that there's anything wrong with them. In fact, I'm quite pleased with them. Judge for yourself whether I should be or not ...

It has puzzled me that socks that are so pretty have been hidden away in the drawer especially when I love wearing hand knitted socks and think that commercial ones just don't compare.
After some time mulling over the problem, I think I've discovered the answer and here it is:

(There are at least another three pairs showing the same signs of disrespect for all my hard work!)

I love knitting socks. But they cost time and effort and money. Sock yarns can get quite pricey and then there's all the time choosing a pattern and executing it. All aspects that I enjoy. But it's a little dep…

Day 99: Today

I am grateful for today and the privilege of sharing it with my husband, three of our wonderful sons, and one beautiful daughter-in-law, and to be able to do so while surrounded by God's magnificent creation.

Today I woke to the heart-breaking news that a friend's husband had passed away. Theirs was a marriage that appeared to have been made in heaven. Despite the seriousness of her husband's illness, I doubt that anyone expected this outcome so soon. A few days ago they were so hopeful that if he responded to treatment, he could go home.

But now she and her daughter must somehow learn how to go on without him. To live each today without their loving husband and father. To endure the nights without her best friend and lover. I know they will both have many memories of wonderful days spent with him but I suspect my friend would give up all that she has to have just one more today with her beloved.

So let's be grateful for, and make the most of, all the todays we do have…

Day 98: Lazy

I am grateful for a lazy Saturday morning. ... Time to sit in the sun, dream of drinking tea (we were out of milk!), listening to my DH and one of his BILs chat, enjoying the sights and sounds of a mild winter's morn (especially after the nasty weather of the past week), and watching my needles fly through my latest knitting project.

I say 'my' even though this project isn't destined to grace my body. The wonderful squooshy yarn from Spinning a Yarn has proved to be the delight I anticipated when I gave in to temptation and purchased it. Half merino and half silk it was an indulgence but not one that I regret. I just hope the recipient enjoys it as much as I have in knitting it.

A sneak preview:

This is the wonderful Holden Shawlette that I was able to download when it was still free. I love the pattern so much that I might just knit it for myself when this one is done. (I'm only half way through the lace edging in this pic and it doesn't show clearly, but I ca…

Day 97: Holes

I'm grateful for the worn spots in our carpet ... not because they are there ... but because they don't matter.

It's so easy to get caught up in the lie that we need more or we are less than ... rather than appreciating all that we have.

I have a worn-almost-to-a-hole spot in our carpet and countless stains ... but today my granddaughters spread their games and puzzles out on that carpet and enjoyed time together.

My sofa is lumpy and old and fraying at the seams ... but today DIL#2 (and later, Son#4) caught some moments of much-needed sleep on that sofa.

Our spare bedrooms lack beauty but tonight they are providing a place to stay for DIL#1 and her girls, unable to get home due to trees blocking the road leading to their property. On other occasions, guests stay in these rooms - guests whose company we enjoy and who, hopefully, can see past the 'defects' in the decorating.

I have walls devoid of paint and wallpaper ... but on those walls hang quilts and photos of …

Day 96: Hope

I was so close to wrapping up 100 Days of Gratitude (for those observant, you would have realised a few months ago that I changed from 365 days to 100 - for the less observant, well I'm telling you now!) when I just seemed to lose momentum and inspiration.

There were several reasons. A number of friends going through extremely difficult times, that it seemed insensitive to be listing all my blessings. The day to day of work and family and all the numerous stresses of balancing both (especially the former). Being in a 'bad' place for several days, which always happens after working on a particular MS (you would think after all this time, I'd realise the link and ask for prayer beforehand). And then the death of Robin Williams and trying to hang onto the hope that a lot who suffer with depression have made it. It's the ones who don't that we hear about and who tend to rock the worlds of those still suffering.

I think we tend to look at those who are famous and th…

Day 95: Another Set

I am so grateful to "D" who gave me another set of eyes to check for spelling and grammatical errors in what I hope is the final draft of my latest novel.

I suspect she stayed up later than she should have and endured discomfort (even pain) to complete the task.
But it's done and I cannot thank her enough for all that she did and in such a short amount of time. Having recently edited Son#3's thesis, I can honestly say that proofreading someone else's work can be, well, hard work.

It was not without its moments. Time difference aside (she is in the US and I am in NZ) there were also a few giggles over different spellings. (I wonder if after sending off a few emails only to have me confirm that it was indeed the way we spelt the word here, if she began to think that I was making it all up and that there was no way anyone in their right mind could spell the word that way!) I guess because we are so used to American spelling in the books and magazines that we get dow…

Days 94: Blessings

My heart is overflowing with thankfulness today.

Yesterday, Son#4 went to Wellington to attend a workshop on worship. He didn't say a lot about it when he returned and we assumed he was tired (after all it was an early start and they didn't get back until late-ish) and perhaps overwhelmed (he's only just begun to be involved in music ministry at church).

Today as we were driving out of town (to spend time with The Five Most Adorable Granddaughters - as well as other family members) something was mentioned about how parents always worry, even about their adult children.

Son#4 said, "I better not tell you what happened yesterday then."

Me (guessing - correctly, I should add - that it involved danger) replied, "I think you should so that I can thank God for looking after you."

He then went on to describe a "close call" on the roads which, in his words, had they not been able to slow down and move onto the shoulder in time "wouldn't have …

Day 93: News

This post is quite early in the day so I may even get another one in before the day is ended.

I am so grateful for the news awaiting me when I opened my emails this morning. A few weeks ago, the news that a friend had cancer would not have been good news (and let's be honest, it still isn't) but the news that it hasn't spread, certainly is.

I'm assuming (hoping and praying) that this means surgery and treatment are very strong possibilities. While I shudder to think of everything she will have to endure on the road to being cancer-free, I am grateful that there is hope and I know that she will face it with the same courage she has shown thus far. She is truly an inspiration and one amazing lady and I feel privileged to be able to call her 'friend'.