All posts filed under “Glimpses of Life

comment 0

A Blessing In Gerbils aka Gerbera Daisies

Dashing out to the store to purchase groceries, I remembered that someone had mentioned we needed flowers for a church program tonight.

Since Trader Joe’s flowers are fairly inexpensive, I picked up, what I thought, was a pretty bouquet.  “This will do” my brain reasoned.

When I arrived home, I picked out a vase, snipped the bottoms of the gerbils (flowers) to keep them fresh, added water to the vase then plopped the gerbils in the vase.

Before leaving the house in the evening, I wrapped the flower arrangement in a plastic bag to protect it from the cold air.

Arriving at church, I removed the plastic bag and set the vase on the entry table.

Blah, I thought to myself.  They don’t look good at all.  Yet I received compliments on the arrangement ~ who would’ve thought?

Since the program was for only one night this week, I brought them home and set them on the table. Droopy, I thought. Why did I pick this arrangement?

I pretty much ignored the flowers until Saturday morning when I sat down to breakfast and looked up at them as they were centered on the table.

Wow! I thought.  These are beautiful!

The bold pink gerbils with hints of yellow in the center bathed my brain with delight.


The white gerbils were just as beautiful with transient pinks in the middle.

White Gerbils

In my busyness, had I failed to see the beauty of these gerbils?

Sometimes that’s how life is though ~ you go through life running from one errand to another without noticing the blessings right in front of you.

Then, BAM!  God sends a blessing that you just can’t ignore.

That’s why I call Him my Friend ~ He’s always making sure I don’t miss out on what He’s sending my way.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

The Yellow Belly Cardinal

Yellow Belly Cardinal

While the snow was gently falling, a cardinal appeared at our bird feeder.

Although we’ve had the fully red cardinals appear, this was the first time this beautiful yellow bellied cardinal had made an appearance.

And it was the perfect time for it to visit as the snowstorm warnings for today had me a little anxious about what the day would bring.

Yet here it was ~ giving hope of a spring to come.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

Patricia’s Quilt

Winter Blues Design – Quilt

At the end of August, when trees were threatening to drop their leaves, I started feeling a little pain in my left shoulder.

Not worrying too much about it, I continued my outdoor yard work well into September.  The shoulder kept feeling worse and worse but I figured the pain would eventually go away with time.  Words of wisdom?  No, this time I was wrong.

In spite of the pain, I decided to start a quilt in October at the request of a friend ~ “just a small one to throw over my chair,” she said.

So I ordered a kit on the Craftsy platform called Winter Blues and started cutting out the fabric.

The fabric for this quilt is by Anthology Fabrics and the quilt was designed by Maria Pate of Airborne Heirlooms.

I’ve always had a hard time matching points on a quilt and this one required a lot of piecing but it went quickly.

Quilt Fabric

This is a photo of the middle of the quilt.  As you can see, a couple of the points are a little off, but as they say in the quilting world “no one will notice except for you.”  I have found that statement to be true.

Anthology Fabrics

I didn’t realize it at the time, but I had a 25% tear in the left shoulder which was confirmed with an MRI.  Still, I was determined to quilt this on my own instead of sending it out to be quilted which was a bad decision and one that made me change the design from what I had originally envisioned.

Perhaps if I had a better sewing machine things would have fared better, but my small Brother sewing machine with a 5″ throat space was not ideal for all the finagling I had to do with this 55″x72″ quilt.

So, although I wanted to try my hand at free motion quilting it was not to be.

I ended up stitching in the ditch with a few curvy lines throughout.  But I still had large spaces that needed to be quilted.  So I decided to improvise on a method called “tying.”

With the tying method, a person would use knitting yarn and tie knots throughout the quilt spacing them equally apart.  But, I don’t like the look.  Instead I decided to use the tie method but use thread and not have the knot show but have it lay flat. It actually worked quite well.

Straight lines and an occasional curved line throughout the quilt made it a little easier to maneuver through the sewing machine.

Winter Blues Design – Quilt

Winter Blues Design – Quilt

Here’s a view from the side …

Winter Blues Design – Quilt

It came our pretty nice, eh?

Well, Patricia really liked it so I’m glad for that.

My next quilt will be a scrappy one ~ my first scrappy quilt. Can’t wait!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

God’s Will and Obedience

Como Zoo Conservatory

A statement I read this morning while doing my devotionals had me pause and absorb its meaning:

“God does not require us to understand His will, just obey it, even if it seems unreasonable.”  Charles Stanley

It is easy to fall into the trap of trying to understand what God says and/or what He wants us to do in our lives.  Yet, He who made us knows what the best is for us.

We can try to “reason” with Him, as if we know what’s best.  Yet, in all the times I have “reasoned” with God for Him to let me do it my way, I have come out the loser.  Yes, He respects our choices but I can visualize Him shaking His head as we plod along in our decision. There are no “I told you so’s” that come out of His mouth when we finally realize that the course we chose was not the best. He waits until we come to our senses and helps us get to where we should be.

For His way is always the best even if sometimes it is the most painful for us to go through.

Trusting Him who created me, knows every cell in my body and wants the best for me is not always easy but I’m trying to live every day doing just that.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

It Feels Warm In Minnesota

Ahhh ~ from the negatives to 1 degree above zero Fahrenheit.  Yes!  1 degree!

Minnesota Temps

It’s really a mental thing, don’t you think?

From dressing with a coat, hat, scarf, thermal underwear, gloves and covering up your face when you go outside … to …

Coat unzippered, no hat, no scarf …

Yes, it’s definitely a mental thing.

The brain has a strange way of behaving.

Thankful for the sunshine and the above zero temps in Minnesota.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

Of Bitter Cold and the Bluest of Blues

Normally in Minnesota, we have our really really cold snap in January.  Not so this year. The bitter cold came in December.

Waking up to -15 yesterday morning (and no, that was not the wind chill) and -17 today, I will be happy when this arctic blast, as some call it, continues on its way.

Looking on the brighter side of life, the skies in the Minnesota skies are the bluest of blues.

Minnesota Winter Blue Sky

It is simply breathtaking to see the sky brushed in a large patch of the most beautiful blue.

Minnesota Winter Blue Sky


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

Puerto Rico, Hurricane Maria and Disaster Relief – A Christmas Project

Ever since hurricane Maria pounded the island of Puerto Rico on September 20, 2017, it has not been able to get anywhere near recovery.

Early on I found a non profit organization by the name of ADRA Puerto Oeste who was working diligently in the community of Mayaguez and the surrounding areas providing meals and food boxes.  Through the US postal service, I have shipped them food and hygiene products.

Currently they are collecting toys for the low income children in that area.  In addition, they accept monetary donations for the toys and other items like mattresses, tarps (a lot of people don’t have roofs on their homes still), Ensure Glucerna, powdered milk, etc.

Feel free to head over to their Facebook page to see the work that they are doing.

And if you’re interested in helping, here are a couple ways:

1) Give a donation to them directly through PayPal and mark it Proyecto Navidad and they will do the shopping on their end. The name of the Director is Adelina Reynoso and you can search for her name on PayPal. If you’d like a charitable receipt, just put your name, address, email and phone number in the notes section and advise her how you’d like to receive your receipt either via email or regular mail. I have sent several donations their way from friends and they are very responsive with sending receipts.

2) Mail your donations/toys to them directly. You can shop/ship for yourself or order through Amazon. The address to ship to is:

ADRA Puerto Rico Oesta

Barrio Algarrobo

Sector Cuba 1060

Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, 00681

(Note: Amazon can take up to 3 weeks for delivery, USPS is taking about 2 weeks so time is of the essence)

Most of the children in that area do not read English so any items donated shouldn’t have any lengthy English instructions. All ages are in need.

Thank you for your consideration in helping the children of Puerto Rico.



Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

Autumn in Minnesota

Autumn in Minnesota

Well, autumn is officially here and almost gone.

I never tire of the beautiful colors that our neighborhood affords us.  God’s beauty simply cannot be outdone.

Autumn in Minnesota

The colors are so vibrant and, even though this signifies the trees are dying, it brings a sense of joy with its beauty.

Autumn in Minnesota

Autumn in Minnesota

Anyone ready for a walk?

Autumn in Minnesota

Autumn in Minnesota

But then, of course, there’s always a downside to so much beauty … raking leaves.  (hehe)

It’s fun the first couple of times, but when you have to leaf blow the driveway every day or every other day, this middle aged body gets sore.

Driveway Leaves, Autumn in Minnesota

I hope you’re enjoying your autumn wherever you are.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

A Late Autumn Getaway

Onalaska River, Onalaska, Wisconsin

Traveling through southern Minnesota, we finally made it to our destination where we had rented a cottage through Airb&b called the Northshore Cottage on Lake Onalaska.  This is the second time I’ve used Airb&b and it has worked out great.  (Have you ever used them before?)

Our cottage had a view of a bay off of the Mississippi River.  It looked beautiful to me but my husband said there was “scum” in the water.  Well, if scum can be beautiful then this was it.  Kind’ve an olive green, no?

Onalaska River, Onalaska, Wisconsin

Here’s another view.

Onalaska River, Onalaska, Wisconsin

We sat on the bench and watched the sun go down one day.  It was magnificent!

Sunset, Onalaska, Wisconsin

The cottage had a view of the water from the deck and one of the bedrooms.

LaCrosse, Wisconsin Cottage

The inside of the cottage was quaint and comfortable.  I like when the wifi works with no glitches.

I was really impressed with the mother/daughter team that rents this cottage out.  They were proactive in getting in touch with me and checking to see if we needed anything.  The cottage was quaint and clean.

Northshore Cottage on Lake Onalaska

Northshore Cottage on Lake Onalaska

Northshore Cottage on Lake Onalaska

The restaurants nearby had really good food.  I was especially surprised at how good the food was at the Red Pines Bar and Grill in Lacrosse, Wisconsin which was nearby.  They even knew how to make sweet potato fries that weren’t greasy!  Yum!

Across the street from the cottage we were able to take a trail through the National Wildlife Refuge.  And for the first time in my life, I can say that I walked through a trail of grasshoppers.  I don’t know why there were so many out but as we walked the grasshoppers on our path hopped out of our way.  Very very odd.

National Wildlife Refuge, Onalaska, Wisconsin

National Wildlife Refuge, Onalaska, Wisconsin

This is definitely an area that I would like to visit again.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
comment 0

Autumn in Seattle

Autumn Begonias, Washington

Almost every year I visit friends in Seattle.  It’s always nice to keep in touch with people you can count on at any time.  I once heard that you can count your friends on one hand.  I’ve been fortunate that I can count them on two.  And you?

The weather was perfect while I was there.  The Richmond Beach area (right outside of Seattle) is such a peaceful and beautiful place to visit and my friends backyard was still in autumn mode.

I can sit here all day ~ so peaceful.

Autumn Backyard, Shoreline WA

The begonias were still in full bloom in mid-October.  Quite impressive!

Autumn Begonias, Washington

A quick drive to see the Olympic Mountains, even if there wasn’t much snow on them yet, was perfect to end the day.

Olympic Mountains, WA

Have you visited the Olympic Mountains before?  In winter, on a clear day, they are majestically beautiful.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email