Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Happiness is yellow daisy mums in a blue bowl in my blue kitchen. I'd take a photo, but my dearest has the camera with him at work.

Roses and daisies vie for being my favorite flowers, though I must admit that I have seldom met any flower that I didn't like. Most of the year, roses are my all-time favorite. But, in late summer through the fall, daisies jump right on up there. I also love tulips, magnolia blossoms, azalea blossoms, crepe myrtle blossoms, gladiolas, geraniums, begonias, periwinkles.....

What's your favorite flower?


Strange happening at Wal-Mart...

I bought a pretty journal at Wal-Mart and brought it home. In its pages, I discovered a rusty looking straight-edged blade, a blade such as might fit in some type of cutting tool. I suppose it was left in the pages by accident. But, I've never encountered anything quite like that before. This is not a complaint about Wal-Mart. I'm just pondering what this is and why it's in the pages of the journal. Luckily, I did not cut my fingers on it.


Friday, October 23, 2009

My Quote of the Day: We don't stop dancing because we get old; we get old because we stop dancing...Author Unknown

Until this was pointed out to me in a class, I did not realize that many of my favorite Bible verses actually form a theme. They relate to the idea that, in Christ, we don't merely get by, but we overflow or abound with the treasures God pours into our hearts.

Here are some examples:

Colossians 2:6-7 -- Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.

Romans 15:13 -- May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

I Thessalonians 3:2 May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.

II Corinthians 8:1-And now, brothers, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability.

II Corinthians 1:5 For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

Isn't it a lovely promise that we can overflow and abound in our walk with Christ? It's challenging, too, though, for I don't always see myself as overflowing with love, joy, hope, and the comfort of Christ. When something overflows, you can't miss it. An overflowing cup, an overflowing pipe, or an overflowing river command our attention. In the same way, we are drawn to an overflowing spring leading to a pretty creek or the cascading overflow of a tiered fountain. So, I ask myself: would my family, my friends, or strangers I should chance to meet notice an overflow of these qualities of the Spirit in me? Do I truly allow myself to be filled to overflowing by the Lord? Or, do I choke the stream with other things flowing out of my heart, such as complaining or frustration or anxiety? Am I satisfied to level out spiritually where I am, or do I seek to grow in the knowledge and grace of the Lord so that I can overflow or abound more and more with the fruits of the Spirit living within me?

Since November is coming up, it's a good time to pray about and focus on overflowing with gratitude.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Arranging furniture...

Are you someone who re-arranges your furniture a lot? Or, do you leave your furniture as it is for a long time? Most home keepers fall into one of these two camps.

I tend to move smaller things around, but leave furniture as it is. One reason is that I get used to things being a certain way and overlook possibilities for improvement. I also have some rooms that have limited possibilities for re-arranging furniture due to the placement of doors and other items.

I appreciate friends who have a good eye for how things in a room can be arranged for new effect. Some people I know are wonderfully talented in this area. Some can see a wonderful re-design using the things they already have right away. Others keep moving things until they come upon an arrangement of furniture and other items that is most pleasing.

Of course, the keeper at home can always consult a professional re-design expert. Since that can be a budget-breaker, it's worth the practice it takes to learn this skill for yourself. By trial and error, studying beautiful rooms, and even asking for the help of a friend, you can learn how to use your furnishings for best effect. Even if this is not your natural talent -- as it is not mine -- you can do a lot to develop your own eye.

Some items to keep in mind when re-arranging furniture are

1) What is the focal point of my room? How does everything else in my room relate to this focal point, just as everything in a painting relates to a focal point? Have I inadvertently created competing focal points in a room? Is this jarring to the eye? (Note: One common problem with creating a focal point is when you have a fireplace and a TV or entertainment center in the same room. Some homes are designed so that the TV is directly above the fireplace, which makes it easy to use that wall as the focal point. In other cases, you may have to tweak things a bit so that the fireplace and TV don't compete with each other.)
2) What built-in architectural details do I need to accommodate?
3) What are the natural traffic patterns in the room? Where do people enter and leave the room? Do people have a clear path to pass in and out of the room and can they easily walk to seating? Can they access shelves, desks, etc.? Do you wish to encourage the traffic flow in a certain direction.
4) Where will you place lamps?
5) What feels comfortable to you and your family? Often, what looks nice in a decorating magazine or what seems like a great idea in your mind's eye might not really be comfortable in a real room. Don't be afraid to arrange things once again until you find an arrangement that is most comfortable.
6) Is there a piece of furniture or a rug or an accesory that you are using in one room that might actually be put to better use in another room?
7) Do you have too much furniture in a room? Too little?

If you consider these things, you'll likely come up with an arrangement that suits your family's needs and is also pleasing to the eye.