Thursday, 24 July 2014

Quality Time by Susan L.

  Last weekend was a wonderful time surrounded by family, young and (sorry Mom) old. It's an immeasurable blessing to have four generations gathered around the picnic table for barbeque burgers, conversation and laughter. It doesn't get much better. Or maybe playing in the wading pool with the grandchildren is best. They had a blast splashing and playing around. The adults sat around the edge cooling their feet and playing Monkey-in-the-Middle with soaking wet spongy balls or a newly invented game of Boatsketball: trying to toss the ball into a floating, plastic toy tug boat.
  Watching my grandson and granddaughter playing sweetly with the doll house I built is a memory to be treasured. I think it's a high point for them, too. After pool time they were eager to come back inside, to cook imaginary meals in the well appointed kitchen or put toy Pluto to bed.

 The two of them are so considerate of one and another. There was no arguing, no debate, no tearful whining. There was none of the "get out of my space" territorial displays. They simply played side by side, with my grandson laughing at his sister for using a toy towel as a blanket to tuck in a little plastic bear. The only damage was because their mom dropped a wooden kitchen chair. An easy fix that simply needed a couple spots of glue.
  I really should finish the exterior. Maybe come winter.
  Years ago, (I'm getting old, too, Mom) in Florida we went into this glass shop. Beautiful stained glass panels filled the room. The shelves were filled with fragile items that sparkled in the store light. The owner also designed and made kaleidoscopes, an expensive item. I remember my mom being worried that I might drop one as I peered at it its fascinating, colourful starburst display. The owner chuckled.
  "I never worry about the kids. They never break anything," he smiled, "It's always the grownups who do."
  "Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in abundance." Is 55:2

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Another Loss by Susan L.

  An elderly friend of mine passed away last week at eighty-three. It was rather sudden. He'd taken a bad fall so his wife and friends took him to the hospital. He never came out.
  I've known them for at least seventeen years and am saddened by the loss. I was over there yesterday and kept expecting him to appear with another "to do", be it something as simple as changing a light bulb, or helping him test the water level in the wells.
  For the last few years, I've been helping him and his wife out on a regular basis. I learned grace and patience from him. As he was unable to do more, as Parkinsons ravaged his body, I learned to let him help where he could. Even if I knew I could do the task at hand much faster on my own. His gentleman's dignity and need to do deserved that much.
  Wally was a pilot who owned a couple of small planes. Years ago, we had a flying party. He and another pilot took the group of us up one by one for a brief flight on a beautiful summer day. As we crammed ourselves into the narrow cockpit of his 1945 Air Force training plane, his love of flying was obvious. He shared that he would often bring a cigar and a glass of brandy with him as he enjoyed the skies on evenings just like that one.
  He had flown for Air Canada but when he retired, the rebel in him showed up. He had a silver pony tail, allowed now because he no longer had to follow hair style policies.
  He sold his bright yellow bi-plane last year because he wasn't able to fly any more. As the plane was dismantled and packed into a large container for its trip to Australia, it was heart wrenching for him and for me to witness. Still, it's good to know it will grace the skies again.
  There's a celebration of life gathering tonight. His wife found one of his old flight logs from Wally's days in the Royal Canadian Air Force. She decided to use it as a guest registry and asked me to write in it for her:
  "Last flight, July 18, 2014, 3 AM"
  I think he'd have liked that.
  Lord, be with all who mourn this loss.
  "Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah." Ps 62:8
 

Friday, 18 July 2014

Preparations by Susan L.

  I am so excited about having my grandchildren come camping at my place this weekend! It'll be nice to see their mom and dad too! I've weeded, primped and pruned the flower beds. The patio is trimmed of its intrusive growth and swept clean. The outside chairs have been scrubbed. The vacuuming and dusting is done. Except for some last minute tidying and getting groceries in, I am all ready.
  It had sort of gotten away from me. Feeling so overwhelmed for so long and then hurting my back meant the gardens were rather weed infested. We've had a perfect amount of rain so they've thrived. So have the flowers. Gardens planted five years ago have matured and are nicely filled in. I may even have to do some dividing in the spring.
  My favorite, Black-Eyed Susans, are about to erupt in bloom. The purple Bee Balm has and attracts humming birds which are always a treat to see.
  A frog has moved in to the pond. Something that has become a bit of a summer tradition. It has me wondering if it's the same one year after year. It's pretty big. How long does a frog live anyways?
  My folks are coming up on Sunday as well. They haven't seen their great-grandchildren for a while. Or me for that matter. The plan is, pray the weather is good, to have a barbeque, bonfire and a good time. I've got plenty of scrap wood and branches to burn. I might even burn some weeds in the daytime simply to keep the mosquitoes away with smoke. We need a heat wave to get rid of the suckers. That simply hasn't happened yet which is rather unusual.
  As an observation, I can tell my meds are working. A short while ago, just the thought of having company would have had me extremely anxious. Never mind all the prep. I'm not. Is it ever nice! Thank You Lord, for creating the people who created these helpful treatments.
  "Oh, give thanks to the God of Heaven! For His mercy endures forever." Ps 136:26