Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Color Pops

It's time for the monthly tablescape challenge at
Let's Dish! 
This month's challenge was Let There Be White 

The rules: 
Use all white dishes dishes
and only one accent color.  

For our white place setting, we chose a casual set that belongs to the Farm Sister. We liked it because of its pure white hue and unique shape. I have no idea who made it or what the pattern is. It's all written in French. I took five years of French, but the only thing I can seem to remember is ferme la bouche. 

We even used a white ceramic charger. 
(The Duchess found those a few years ago at CTS. I wish I owned some.)

Then, we broke up all that white with our accent color, which... 
surprise, surprise,
 is a pop of red.

We decided to make ours a breakfast table.  That way, we could add this little white egg cup and serve decoupaged eggs.

**edited because of comments: Yes, I did make the eggs.  I used patterns from some wrapping paper. 

And some strawberries in yet another little white berry bowl.

And a  white creamer and sugar bowl.

And a white pot full of white daisies. 

When we stick to a theme, we stick to a theme.   

We're what you call radical rule followers...

OK, maybe not completely radical.  

There's not a rule book in the world that would give our triangle of glassware a pass, but if it's breakfast, I'm having coffee, and I'm having it in a mug.  

On the table it went. 

We couldn't decide if a coffee mug went in the dishware category or the glassware category so we compromised and used a white one with a pop of red.  The juice glass is stuffed with another napkin because everyone knows you use two napkins on play tables set for invisible people.  It's a rule.

The rules also allowed for more color in the flatware  so that's what we did.  

And viola, c'est fini!

OK, maybe I remember a little more French than I thought I did.

Le petit déjeuner est sur la table. 

Bon appétit!

Sharing with Cuisine Kathleen  at the Let's Dish! tablescape challenge
 and the Porch People for  Tablescape Thursday

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sweating the Shingles and Other Small Stuff

Just a quickie this morning as I try to juggle Blogville and Momville at the same time. Miss Whimsy came home over the weekend for a break before she starts her next school year.

Which is her senior year...

Didn't we just create that freshman dorm room for her about two days ago?
Yes, I think we did.

Aside from  trying to scale Mt. Whimsy, we're also dealing with issues of the medical sort.  The poor thing brought home a case of shingles.  We have no idea what could have prompted it since she wasn't really under a lot of stress this summer, unless it was the stress of doing her first really grown up job in the form of an internship, and trying to do it well.

At any  rate, she is home and healing. We're pretty blessed that she hasn't that much of the characteristic pain that goes with it. Her problems are more of the side effect sort.  As I mentioned in THIS POST (a long, long, time ago), Miss Whimsy does enjoy a good milking.  Between the information packet that came with her prescriptions and some googling she did for extra credit, she has discovered quite a few of them. By all accounts, she has decided to have every, shingle, one.

Oh that girl...
What would we do without her?  

In more crafty news, I've been working on a bit of this and that.  You might recall that I dubbed the summer of 2013 the summer to Sweat the Small Stuff.  Much of it has been cleaning and organizing and not all that blog worthy, but today, I'll share an easy peasy little candlestick project.  

It started out as a set that looked like this. 

 I got them some time back at an estate sale and paid $3.00 for the pair.  I wanted something tall, dark, and handsome for my fall/winter mantels, and I loved their height and shape. Unfortunately, they were designed for a tall taper.  

Honestly? I thought they looked kind of dorky that way.

So I attached a little terracotta saucer (Hobby Lobby, about $2.00/pack.) with some E-6000 epoxy  and made it more substantial.  Then, I darkened the finish with some Rustoleum Metallic in antique brass and dry brushed some  espresso craft paint.

Don't you think it looks better this way?

Please say yes, because that's the way I'm leaving it.

 Of course, when I set about to do the matching one, I had a little bit of a mishap.

 The whole point was to have a pair of them.  

Frankly, I don't know how it happened since I propped it up the same way that I did the first one. It wasn't the least little bit windy that day, either. Nonetheless, it broke.   Of course, I also noticed the scented calling card of Good Time Charley, the roaming neighborhood spaniel in the vicinity, too ...

Oooh that dog!
Him, I could do without...

 Oh well...

The breaks were clean ones so I will try to glue it all together and create a Frankenstick. 

I've done some other small stuff, but it will have to wait for another day.  Today, I have a daughter to baby.  And then, there's this tablescape challenge that I'm planning to join too...

Sunday, July 28, 2013

There Was A Crooked Man

Sometimes, it really is just a matter of perspective.

What looks like torture to one person looks like treasure to another. 

Take these shoes, for example. 

If you didn't know better, this primitive apparatus looks like something from the evidence room in a criminal child abuse case.  To the Duchess, it qualifies as a treasure. It must be; she has treasured  it in her attic for over 50 years.

That's because these little shoes were the first ones worn by my brother.

And no, that's not the poor man's version of a bronzed shoe.  It is, however, the 1950's version of a corrective one.  Maybe some of you recognize it. Back in the day,  this was orthopedic medicine at its finest.

Big brother was born pigeon toed, you see.  Left to his own devices, he would have continued that way, too. Oh sure, it wouldn't have killed him. As far as I know, no one ever died from having pigeon toes. They just made for a lifetime of crooked walking and constant tripping.  What kind of parents would want that for their child?

Not mine.

Day and night for the first year of so of his life, my brother wore shoes nailed to that board. He played that way, he ate that way, and he slept that way. It couldn't have been very fun for him, but from what I've heard, he was a little trooper. It wouldn't have mattered if he hadn't been though. Mom and Dad were united in their resolve to fix the crooked thing.

 They loved their son. 
His walk mattered to them.

In the end, it worked. My brother had a corrected walk, and no one thought my parents anything but wise for having corrected it, even if it caused him more than a little discomfort.  

Yep, it's all a matter of perspective.
 One man's torture is another man's treasure. 

You probably know where I'm going with this.

 If it's wise to correct a  physical walk, isn't it even wiser to correct a spiritual one?

I think so.   What's more, the wisest King of Israel agrees with me.  King Solomon must have been quite fond of the idea of correction.  He used  the Hebrew word for it 30 different times in the book of Proverbs. (Pretty significant since it is only used 20 more times in the entire Old Testament. )

Oh sure, it isn't always translated correction. That's why you have to be on the lookout for it. Usually, it's camouflaged with more palatable words like instruction.  

                      Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise.
                                                                   ~Proverbs 19:20

Can I be honest? I'm not so sure that translation is a good thing.  What the verse really says is this:

                     Listen to advice and accept correction, and in the end you will be wise.

There's kind of a difference, isn't there?  

Most of us are willing to be instructed.  Instruction is about growth and progress. Correction, on the other hand,  is a little harder to swallow.  Correction implies that maybe,  just maybe,  we're not quite as perfect as we think we are.   Maybe,  just maybe, we have some spiritual pigeon toes tripping us up on the pilgrim path.

To me, God's Word is kind of like those shoes-on-a-stick.  If applied correctly, it can make the crooked places straight. Oh sure, it takes time and effort.  It can get downright uncomfortable at times, too, but in the end, isn't it infinitely better to subject ourselves to a little correction than to keep tripping our way through life, one crooked mile after another?

Yeah, I think so too.   

By the way, my brother wasn't the only one in our family born with a need of correction. His twin sister had a crooked back.   Apparently, there was some womb wrestling going on between Esau and Jacobette.

They corrected that too. 

The stuff my mother saves...

As for me? My bones are perfectly straight and in need of no correction. My tongue was another matter. I was born with it tethered to the bottom of my mouth... which kept it from effectively wagging.  Not to worry, my parents had it clipped.

The wisdom of that correction, however, is still open for debate.

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Monday, July 22, 2013

It's Monarch Monday!

That's what it is around here, anyway, because I'm on royal baby watch.  Unfortunately, I'm standing in the waiting room all by my lonesome.    Apparently, it's silly to care about the royal baby,  but it isn't silly to care that I care about the royal baby.

Go figure.

Such is the selective reasoning  of the snickering testosterone that  I married,  and it looks like he's in good company.  My twitter feed is all... well... atwitter  with the battle between those who care and those who don't care. 

I don't care that they don't care.  I think that makes me the winner in the Silly War, just in case you care.

So why do I care?

Well, aside from apparently being a silly woman,  I'm also a hopeless romantic who loves nothing more than a happily ever after, especially when said happily ever after involves a prince and a princess and a palace. What could be happier ever after than a royal baby carriage?

Bet you can't think of a single thing.

I care because it's fun.  I care because it's nice to turn on the news once in a while and not find myself sputtering about the home place like a grumpy old man or stockpiling munitions.

So I care, and I'm watching and waiting for the royal announcement. I'll be pleased as punch no matter what color the baby blanket  is, but to be honest here, I am kind of rooting for a pink one this time.

In my head, I've named her Victoria Elizabeth Diana.  (Not that anybody cares...)  Of course,  the name HRH Princess Deborah has a nice ring to it too.  I haven't picked out a princely  name yet, but I imagine he'll have three or four of them by the time the christening is complete.  One thing's for sure, though. If His Royal Highness takes after his daddy, they won't be calling him Sir Lotsa Hair for very long.

Anyone else in the waiting room this morning? Have you picked a name?

Of course, you all know by now that it's a prince!

His Royal Highness Christopher Rupert, Windemier Vlandamier, Carl Alexander, Francois Reginald, Lancelot Herman, Gregory James...

If you *get* that, Hello kindred soul! 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Turtlenado and the Diamondback

Have you heard about the new sci fi movie out there right now? It's called Sharknado or some such thing. It's premise? A tornado the over water scoops up a bunch of man eating sharks and transports them to California, where they fall from the sky and chow down on a city.

I think I'll skip it.  I haven't been able to enjoy the ocean since the first Jaws movie and really don't need any encouragement to develop yet another phobia.

At this point, however,  I am ready to believe anything can fall from the sky around here.

After years and years of dangerous drought, we are getting rain like I have never seen in my lifetime.  Really, that's not just my typical brand of blog hyperbole.  According to the news, we haven't had this much rain in the area since 1929. 

It's not only raining cats and dogs,
 it's apparently raining turtles.

Just in case you think that's a rushing stream there, think again. That's my front walk he's trying to ford. You know it's bad when water critters start evacuating,

I stood up on the porch with the shiny red Kodak as he turtle-paddled down the walk, much faster than I have ever been led to believe, by the way.

 Then, he turned and headed across a patch of grass.

Right toward the dry haven of my open garage.

That was the point where I started making the little screeching noises.  They traveled all the way upstairs to the office of a smarty pants with lotsa hair who utterly refused to pick up a stick and poke him in the other direction.

According to him,  Turtlenado did not qualify as a vicious sea creature.  He rambled on...something about the shell and that it didn't want to hurt anybody...while I marveled at the wonder hubby who could stand thirty yards away and do both a bone density test and a psychological profile of a vicious sea monster.

I wasn't having it.

The last time I checked, heart attacks classify as harmful, and if I open my back door and find a soft shelled surprise waiting on the back stoop, I'm going to have one. Period. I was about to clang him away with a couple of pot lids when he turned of his own volition and headed across the drive toward the neighbor. Thank God.

And that, I hope, was the last I'll see of the turtlenado.

It's not, however, the end of the story. The story ends with a related warning about waterlogged evacuees invading the southeast. You see, the sea monster may indeed have been harmless, but other jaws are not. 

Do you see this precious pup?

This is Beamer, the beloved beagle of Lt. McNephew and the Newlywed Niece.  Do you see the marks on his face? Those are fang marks from an attack of a diamondback rattler.  And do you know where the attack occurred? Right outside their own back stoop under their carport. The snake was lurking under her car.

Under her car. (I thought I would repeat that in case you missed it.)

I'm grateful to report that they were home when it happened. They saved little Beamer and sent his attacker out with a bang. 

Waterlogged southerners, please beware.

Can I add another urgent prayer request as well? 
One of my very favorite blog friends, Sharon at Sharon Sharing God has been evacuated from her home  because of a raging fire. Please join me in praying not only that her home will somehow be spared, but also for those fighting the blaze and Sharon's heart as she waits in prayer for news.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Note Cards On Wheels

This month's theme for the Note Card Party 
comes to you courtesy of Elizabeth at

In response to my big old post about nothing really to celebrate 500 posts, 
she provided me with some blog fodder in the form of questions. (Thanks, by the way.)

One of them was this:  

Where did you come up with the name of your blog?

That was a very nice way of saying, "What's up with you and the wheels?"

Well, the longer answer can be found in my very first yakabout. You can read all  539 words of it HERE if you have a mind to. I know its that long because I used to keep a word count back then.  The short answer  is that it comes from the proverb which inspired the blog.

A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver. 
~Proverbs 25:11 

Somehow, I wanted to use that proverb in the title.  I might have considered
 Aptly Spoken or Apples of Gold, but they just seemed so ...usual.

You might not have noticed this, but I'm kind of fond of the unusual.

That's a very nice way of saying that I'm a little bit odd.

Plus, let's face it: Those words don't fit me. Those words are poised and poetic.  I'm more of a chubby chatterbox. I was about to shuck the whole proverb idea when I discovered that the actual Hebrew of that phrase " word aptly spoken" is "a word upon its wheel."  I loved that. 

Apparently, words aptly spoken are going someplace.
It sounded like an adventure to me.

And that, folks, is the short answer of how I got the name of this blog.

To be honest, I've regretted it a time or twenty in the past 500 posts. I confess to a bit of blog title envy every time I see the poised and poetic ones like The Nest at Finch Rest  or  Creekside Cottage  or Pear Tree Lane. 

I mean, really.  I live on a pear tree lane. Why didn't I think of that?  But nooo... I'm just a bunch of words on wheels.  

But then again, a lovely blog title might lure folks here with the promise of lovely things.  

And wouldn't they be disappointed when all they got was
 adventures in the life of a meandering motormouth?

Yeah, I think so too. 

I guess I'm stuck with it for now. 

What about you? How did you come upon the name for your blog? Are you happy with it, or do you suffer from blog title envy too?  If you could rename your blog, what would it be

(By the way, this post is 441 words. I'm sure you were wondering.)

Sharing this, as usual with Vee...
who has both a haven and a Note Card Party.
  I envy them both. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Oh Good Grief...

No, seriously. I mean gooooood grief.  

Have you ever had such a serious case of the "reallies?" that you feel like hitting yourself on the head with a hammer? Yeah, well that is exactly where I stand this morning, knee deep in Really Land.

That's because I really... really have a ridiculous reason for not posting for days. I mean, really ridiculous, folks.

You see, when I sat down to write, I discovered that my next post ...this one right here.... was going to be my 500th post.


Somehow over the course of time,
 I have managed to imagine up 500 random things to yak about. 

 Being such an auspicious post and all, it just seemed to me that it shouldn't be squandered on just any old thing.  It ought to be some sort of celebration. Too bad I couldn't figure out how in the world to go about celebrating.  Really folks, I should be too ashamed to yak about this, but the stress of the whole thing gave me a cold case of keyboard freeze.  

No, really. 

I thought about a tablescape, but well... the rain and all.  I thought about a house tour, but then I'd have to clean the house.  I thought about a blog giveaway, but I didn't know how many takers I would have for a set of  personally crafted decoupaged coasters.  A big old cake was not an option.  It's 104 degrees in the shade, way too hot to bake for a bunch of invisible people.

Finally, I decided to wait for someone out there to pass me one of those Blog Awards. You know the kind, the ones where you get to yak out 7 random things about yourself and everybody has to listen. I love those, which when you think about it is kind of  pathetic... really.  

I waited and waited, but apparently, no one  in all of Blogville wants to hear 7 more random things about Debbie. How embarrassing.

I. mean. really.  

So here I sit. All dressed up and nothing to say. So as not to waste any more blog time, I've just decided to take the plunge and publish a post about absolutely nothing.   I'm sneaking it in on a Saturday afternoon so as not to embarrass myself in front of a crowd.

Yeah, I know.  A little late to start worrying about that now... 

And that, folks, is all I have to say about that. Well, that, and a big fat thank you  for listening to me yak all the way to 500 posts.  I appreciate it more than you will ever know.

And I mean that.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Don't Rain On My Parade

Well folks, I don't know how you spent your weekend, but around this place we had a little adventure of the road trip variety.  Only for this trip, we had to trade the trusty Camry  for something just a little bit bigger. We borrowed this beauty from Lt. McNephew.

Care to guess the reason?

If you guessed dining room chairs, then you won the prize. After pouting my way through every restore store in a 60 mile radius, I finally resorted to my very first online shopping safari.  I searched Craig's List for every major city in the state of Georgia, and lo and behold, I found some contenders. 

Off we went. 

He did all the driving.
 I provided the prattle and pointed out the obvious.  


 Three hours later, we arrived at our destination...  bone dry.

Then, it was a matter of meeting the chairs in person. They aren't vintage, but I loved the shape of them anyway. Plus, they were sturdy. Plus, they were in great condition.  

Plus... they matched my finish perfectly. I mean, perfectly people... I had brought along one of the two chairs that actually came with the set for comparison. 

And that little pedestal table? 
It came along for the ride.  I don't happen to need a table that size,
 but I do have two daughters and two nieces.  

So we wrapped them up,
 tarped them over, and headed back home. 

He did  the driving. 
I provided the musical accompaniment. 

 I covered everything from
  Raindrops Keep Falling   
to  Singing in the Rain.

 In my head, I sounded just like Gene Kelly.  

In his head, I sounded more like the drip, drip, drip of a faucet.
He told me to turn off the spigot and simmer down.  

So I hummed instead...

I'm never gonna stop the rain by complainin'... 

We almost made it. 

The shower was a brief one, though, so we just kept on truckin'.

Had I known what the the tarp looked like behind me,
 I probably would have been a lot more concerned. 

Good thing I didn't. 

I'm happy to report that there was no visible water damage. One chair appears to have fallen victim of a flapping grommet attack, but not to worry...
 I do refinish furniture, after all. 

And thus ends the tale of the 
Great Dining Room Chair Adventure. 

I even managed to finish  in the black.
OK, maybe it's sort of a grayish shade of black, but it's black nonetheless. 
After paying for the chairs and gas for the guzzler, 
we have seven whole dollars in the chair account. 

I'm drinking from my saucer 'cause my cup is overflowed...

Next up: 
Wing chairs for the living room. 

So how was your weekend?

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Let's Start At The Very Beginning

It's a very fine place to start...

I'm still in that state of fence sitting about teaching my Bible study class. I've put my decision on hold until a fair and appropriate time.  (As in fall... when the new church year begins.) In the meantime, I started teaching a  summer series from the Proverbs. It's a unit about wisdom.

Appropriate, I think, since I'm in great need of wisdom.  I don't know of anyone who isn't, and I've never met someone who doesn't want it.  I mean, no one willingly goes through life as a fool, right?

But then again, maybe we do.  It seems that way, anyway.  If wisdom is sort of there for the asking, and we don't ask for it, aren't we making the conscious decision to remain unwise?

Yeah, I think so too.

And so, that's where I started with this unit,  at the very beginning... with the asking.

On day 1,  we went back to the reason that the writer of most of the Proverbs was so wise.  I asked the class the usual question: 

Where did Solomon get all that wisdom?

And I got the usual answer. 

He asked for it. 

And that's where we stopped. 

Yes, I realize that's the story we all heard in Sunday school. Solomon was wise because he asked God for wisdom.  Apparently, it all went down in a  Godified version of  The Three Wishes.  God told Solomon to ask for whatever he wanted, and Solomon asked for wisdom. Then God blinked his heavenly eyes and twitched his holy nose, and BAM!  Solomon instantaneously became the wisest king in all of Israel.  

OK, maybe we don't actually say all that, but if we're still slurping on the infant formula of Sunday school, that's what we might be tempted to believe.  And if we're tempted to believe that, we might also be tempted to believe that finding wisdom is as simple as asking for it.

So that's exactly what we do.

When faced with a situation that's in need of some wisdom, we close our eyes and ask. And then, we wait. We think we're pretty virtuous for waiting, too. We'll slap some church clothes on it and call it patience... or perseverance... or the granddaddy of them all, longsuffering.  All the while, we wait for Godly wisdom. You know, like Solomon did.

Only that's not what Solomon did. To understand the Solomon formula we have to dig a little deeper. Solomon's wisdom didn't start with the asking. It started with the wanting. 

Scratch that.

It actually started with the realizing. We'll never get wisdom until we admit that we don't already have it.  Solomon realized it.

So he asked...

...So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?” (I Kings 3:9)

Well lookie there...He didn't ask for Magical Wisdom Beans.
He asked for a discerning heart.  

There's a difference, you know. 

Actually, what he asked for was a listening heart. The Hebrew  שמע (shama`) means to hear, listen, and obey. When given the option of anything God could give him, Solomon asked for a heart that was teachable.

Wisdom isn't a product; it's a process. 

I don't know about you, but too often I get that one backwards. I ask  wish for wisdom and then try to listen to my heart, as if God were going to miraculously insert it there. Why I do that, I do not know.  My heart is nothing but a big fat liar and trouble maker. Oh the stories I could tell...

No, having a listening heart is not the same thing as listening to your heart. Solomon has a word for folks who do that. He calls us fools.

He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, 
but the one who walks in wisdom will be delivered.
 (Proverbs 28:26)

I don't want to be a fool, and neither did Solomon. That's why instead of listening to his heart, he asked for a heart that would listen.

Of course, to whom it listens  is pretty critical too, but since this post is already long winded, we'll have to save it for another day. I'll just leave you with the best of advice I've ever been given on the subject.  When in need of wisdom, it's always best to start, "In the beginning..."


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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Red, White, and Bluejeans

Just a quick post this morning as I head out to celebrate with the family.  

 This isn't the table we'll be using today, but it's one that I set for my kitchen.  I would have put it outside, but.... you know... the rain rain rain came down down down...

Happy Independence Day 
to one and all! 

May we never forget that this freedom we hold so dear
 came at a price.

All freedoms do, you know.

May we celebrate the day with an ear to the past 
and an eye to the future. 

And today more than ever, may all our dreams be
 American  made.

Celebrating at Let's Dish!


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