Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. ~Philippians 4:8~

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Scripture

I John 5: 13-15

These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

Word Game

Well I had to check out that web site Gloria wrote about on her blog. It's called Wordle and it's a lot of fun making word 'posters' or clouds. I'll have to go back and create some more of them. They actually look very nice! This of course is yet another discovery to keep us busy. You know, for those times when it's hard to think of subjects to write about. I think I'll add this one to my sidebar. It's a keeper!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Another Dishcloth

Another quiet and uneventful Saturday had me feeling like cooking up a small batch of Enchiladas Swisas, or Swiss Enchiladas. I followed a recipe from a Mexican chef on tv. It's just corn tortillas rolled up with shredded chicken and topped with a green tomatillo sauce. His recipe had you topping the enchiladas with Queso Chihuahua, which I could not find here locally. So I used what else but Swiss cheese! Very simple meal accompanied by rice, refried beans, and a salad. And our ever present limeade to wash it down with.



It also felt like a good day for knitting. I finished up a dishcloth using a pattern from this book:




It's called the Ballband Dishcloth and it's just so purty!!
But it doesn't knit up fast. It seemed to take forever to finish.
I had said I wouldn't do any more dishcloths. But I just had to try this pattern to see if I would like it enough to knit a few more. And I do. And I will. I've got some nice orange sherbet colored cotton yarn I'd like to use just for this. The only change I'll make is make it smaller. It's a bit too big for my taste. I'd say today was a good day!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Guava Season

A lot of the blogs I enjoy reading have featured their Autumn harvests of yummy apples, pumpkins, squash, and a host of other beautiful foods. Of course, I can't grow a lot of those things in our south Texas heat, but we can grow some tropical fruits. In our back yard we have a huge Guava tree which was a gift from my Abuelita. Guava season is upon us! Over the past few days the fruit has been steadily ripening and has perfumed the yard with its delicious scent. For some reason, this was a good year for the tree. It's been a while since it produced so much fruit. I think that because last year we got a goodly amount of rainfall, and recently as well, it made for an increased harvest. One thing I like to make is guava jam. I think I'd characterize it more as guava butter. So, I will be making that tomorrow. Today, I gathered some fruit and after washing thoroughly, I proceeded to scoop out the flesh for the first stage of preserving. Aren't they amazing? The whole house smells of guava or 'guayaba' as they are called in Spanish.





We also enjoy the fruits of the area pecan trees. We do have a large pecan tree, and it produces nuts, but the 'chinches' or stinkbugs get to the fruit, and so it seldom has edible fruit. We don't spray the tree because it's right above our koi pond. I also enjoy harvesting all the little 'volunteer' chile plants which produce these tiny little peppers called 'chile piquin'. We've seen mockingbirds eating these spicy little berries, so we figure we have the mockingbird to thank for spreading such goodness around! And then there are the pomegranates which do grow in our area as well.


I will also be making pumpkin empanadas. But first I'll have to buy the pumpkins at the grocery store. This time of year is just amazing! It gives me so much hope and so many wonderful things to look forward to!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Sugar Ramblings

With my Husband's encouragement, I weaned myself from a very addictive habit of drinking 'soft' drinks. More specifically, uber-sugary sodas. I probably enriched the coffers of the "Cola" empires more than any trader on Wall Street ever did. I know I certainly contributed more than my fair share to the canned aluminum industry. And addicted I was. I couldn't see beyond having my 'fix' of Coke or RcCola every time I got thirsty. Which begs the question: Why hasn't anyone questioned why an innocent looking drink would be addictive in the first place?

With diabetes a health risk in my family, I feel relieved that I was able to alter a harmful behavioral pattern. So, for about the past five years,now all I drink with my meals is unsweetened water with lime juice or unsweetened tea.

Having said that, is it just me, or has anyone noticed that chocolate candies are more and more becoming less chocolate and more sugar? I used to buy chocolate candy like anyone else when I wanted a sweet treat. But now, I think manufacturers are doing a number on candy consumers. I'm fairly sure sugar is cheaper than real cocoa, so my theory is they are plumping up their profits by giving us less of the real thing and more of the 'filler' thing. Oh! And I do wonder if sugar somehow also has addictive properties.

I suppose companies think consumers are naive and uninformed. I for one saw the documentary where they showed how manufacturers put less of a product in a container made to look the same as what the original packaging looked like, but somehow altered to contain less. It's all about the bottom line, they say. That doesn't make it right. So when did we as consumers lose our rights? I don't proclaim to have the answers, but I will say this, I'm seeing what they're doing....and I'm not buying it anymore!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Unexpected Blessings

A few days ago I had asked Amy from HomeAcre about a hat she had shown on her website. I wondered where I might obtain the pattern. She offered to send me the information about where she'd gotten it. Well, I was surely surprised when I received a package in the mail from her with not only what I had requested, but some sweet tokens she had included as well.


Aren't her crochet items just beautiful?

The gold bookmark is so pretty, as well as the little vintage brooch. The soap and crochet baggie are so functional--the soap smells wonderful!

And of course, because I love to knit, the Lamb's Pride wool yarn is such a luxurious gift! Amy, what a beautiful and thoughtful gesture!

I hesitated to write about this. I didn't know if it was appropriate to mention it. But you know, like that old 70's song says "What the world needs now is love", I wanted to in some small way highlight one act of goodwill...a random act of kindness. She knew and I know that she didn't have to do it. No one has to do anything nice for anyone. But what I'm left with is that sometimes, God whispers in our ears, and whether we 'obey' his voice is left totally up to us. He touches the hearts of men, and sometimes a heart of stone can be turned into a heart of flesh and feeling. I choose to see this as a gift from the Lord himself. I am in awe of his goodness!

One thing I do know for sure, to those who listen to and heed his voice, he has great things in store for them. Thank you Amy!


Sunday, September 14, 2008

A Knitting Sort of Day

I received a couple of emails asking about our welfare what with hurricane Ike's shenanigans in the state. I thank you so much for your concern. We are in an area pretty far removed from the coast. Ike was huge, though, and understandably, it would seem his reach encompassed the whole state of Texas! We were hoping for some rain, but it was not to be. Hence, we are once again in the throes of Summer heat. We do have lots of humidity, though! For all our discomfort, it is nothing compared to what everyone who stayed and didn't evacuate is suffering. Power outages, no water or sewer service, it's a terrible time to be near the coast right now. Our prayers go out to all those affected. We can only pray everything goes back to normal soon.

On another note, I've been keeping myself busy by knitting up dishcloths! I made just a few for my kitchen. I think I'll stop on that until I find more colorful cotton yarn. I did have to resort to using a cotton blend, aka Aunt Lydia's brand in a linen color. The yarn is rather thin, so the one dishcloth made with it turned out less fluffy than the ones made with 100% cotton. I love the color of linen though! Regardless, I know they'll all come in really handy. Now if I could only convince myself that it's ok to actually use them! They look so pretty all clean and fluffy. Imagine how they'll look once dirty dishwater gets on them. Or maybe I can just use them for wiping down the counters?


On my knitting needles is another Acorn Hat. It's coming along. Hope to finish it before Fall is over. The colors are so autumnal, although it works for Winter as well. I don't know what it is about this time of year, it just puts me in a knitting mood! I stepped outside earlier, and let me say this, it was HOT! Being inside though, with the coolness of the central air system, I can fancy myself smack dab in the middle of Winter.


As I'm writing this, I hear the rain beginning to fall. I am so happy! The loud clap of thunder sounded heavenly also! My Dearest says it's pouring!

Praise the Lord!!


Saturday, September 6, 2008

Finished Project

Back when I posted about finishing the second acorn hat for my Grandson, I didn't think it would take me so long. Two months have passed, and I finally finished it! Actually, it's been finished for a while, I just needed to sew on the little velcro spots. I hope it fits him because I made this one bigger than the first one I made. I do like these colors a bit more.



Also, after seeing the thick, plush dishcloths that everyone is making from the pattern Deb from HomespunLiving has so generously shared, I had to jump on the bandwagon and make some for myself. Well, only one, at this point anyway. But after seeing and feeling for myself how nice and practical it is, I'll be making some more. I really think I should have used a solid color, for the texture and 'waffles' to really show. I used a multi-color cotton yarn, and it doesn't do the pattern justice, I think. It was the only cotton yarn I had on hand, from the Peaches 'n Cream brand. The pattern calls for Lion Brand cotton. I couldn't find it here locally. Might have to order some online. I really want to have a whole set of them for the kitchen. I highly recommend using this pattern. I also found another really nice pattern for dishcloths in my MasonDixonKnitting book.

And now I'm off to do some housework. Then I'll get back to making another dishtowel or two.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Goodies in the Mail


Back in August I received a lovely little parcel in the mail from Lynda over at AmongtheHedgeRows. I had ordered some seam binding that she sells in her Etsy Shop. She has quite a good selection of items which can be used for gifts, stationary and paper goods, as well as for crafting. Imagine my delight when I opened the package. These pictures do not do it justice. The presentation itself is lovely! I just love the array of colors that she carries in her shop. And really, the prices are SO reasonable. I only mention that because as we all know, these days with prices going through the roof on everything, people look for ways to stretch their dollar. I mean look at the beautiful soft colors of these ribbons:


And then, as if the presentation and the items were not enough, she also included a little 'extra' gift. Her shop is well known for producing some of the most beautiful tags, and these were no exception!



So head over to her shop anytime you're in need of something beautiful and unique. You will not be disappointed!


I have to mention another shop that has lots of really nice things, especially for those into crafting and altered art. Some time back, I purchased a few things from Leesiebella over at Sugar,Sugar. She has a lovely online shop that is just brimming with cuteness! And of course, I would be terribly remiss if I didn't mention our very own Beverly's shop. Her creations are absolutely divine! I so enjoy reading her blog TeatimeandRoses which always brings a smile to my face. Her blog is on my must-read list!

At the same time it's important to add that it's a good thing to support our fellow bloggers in their creative endeavors. Hand made and home made goods are sure to be an indication of quality. I'm just really glad I found these shops. I'd say this one is another 'good thing'! It's also a good thing to let each other know of good shopping experiences. Spreading the word is good for consumers as well as entrepreneurs. Just had to share and give a shout-out to these ladies!


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Good Ole Days

I was just over at my friend Gloria's blog "Life in General". I enjoy reading her blog on a daily basis. She was talking about how people don't trust each other any more. She brought out some good points, all with her wonderful sense of humor. It got me to thinking, because I have to agree, I've been there myself. Having lived here for twenty two years, we know almost all our neighbors, except about three of whom have just recently moved into the neighborhood. But what amazes me, is that for the most part, I can count on my hands the times we've actually spoken to them over the years. Sometimes the Hubbie and I talk about that, and he thinks it's because with the noise from the central air unit, and being 'sealed up' inside the house, you don't hear the neighbors' comings and goings. So if we happen to be arriving or leaving the house at the same time they are, that's when we actually see them or have the opportunity to talk and do some catching up. The fences certainly serve to make us unaware of each other as well. Sometimes I'll be gardening in the back yard, and the only way I know the neighbors are having a shingding is because of the delicious aromas wafting through the air. The smell of fajitas cooking over mesquite wood is a common aroma in this neck of the woods, especially on weekends. Tantalizing!

I remember while growing up and during visits to my dear Abuelita, things were so different! We'd sit out on her front porch, and everyone who passed by would stop and visit for a bit. And if we were walking by their homes, if there were any women outside, we'd stop and chat for a bit as well. We'd be watering the plants and trees along her fence and of course there was always someone who would stop and shoot the breeze. It never failed! Everyone it seemed knew everyone else. Of course, she didn't have central air, and during hot weather, sitting out on her porch enjoying the evening breeze was one way to cool off. And you know what else is different about then? If you happened to be eating or drinking something, you'd offer to share with your neighbors! Not something which can be easily done with passersby these days. Think 'lawsuit' society. Why, what if they happen to get an ailment, they might think to sue you for your offerings! What a different world we live in. So now, we can only entertain those people we closely know and who know us.

Perhaps that's why we visit blogs. Perchance it's a little like the old days, when you could just 'pop-in' for a visit without having to call first? Blogging perhaps is a way to stop and 'chat' for a bit before going on our merry way? Especially nice are those visits who 'chat' by way of a little comment or two! Doncha think?

Sometimes, don't you just wish things could be like in the old days?

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