Sooo Excited!!

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I am so excited…after years of wanting to get a domain name and a designer to put a professional blog together that would better show my photography, I finally took the plunge and did it!  I have a new professional blog, Behind the Gate.  I am moving from The Old Parsonage, to Behind the Gate. It is not far at all, in fact the same house… just  a different site!  Please bookmark my new site, and come see me Behind the Gate!


Speaking Sky

Psalms 19: The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.  Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.

There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.  Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. 

In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion,, like a champion rejoicing to run his course.  It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.

My daughter took these pictures on her Memorial Day trip to the Washington coast. (You can click on the pictures to enlarge them.)  Wow…there is nothing like a sunset over the ocean!  These are real pictures, not enhanced with technology. They need nothing else added, the sky is breathtaking and speaking in this moment of time.     The heavens do speak, don’t they?  Linking this post with Spiritual Sunday. 

Simply Listening

“When we listen as if we were in a temple, honoring each persons words as valuable and sacred, all kinds of possibilities can happen; miracles can occur.”  Author Unknown

I tore this quote from a magazine years ago and put it on my desk when I was a school nurse. At the start of every school day, I would read it and remind myself to listen intently to the students coming in.  It was my daily reminder to listen close enough to find out what their hearts were speaking as well as their words.  

Last week I sat on the ocean by the fire and listened to a stranger tell me her stories.  Her work, her hopes, her dreams for the future.  Listening to another person, their frustrations and lessons they are learning, is becoming a simple pleasure for me.  To be trusted with their truth, their life, their fears and hopes.  I’m a slow learner, it has taken me years to get to the place where I don’t have to tell my story. To listen, to ask questions, allowing their story to unfold at its own pace.  I’m still not there yet… I can’t deny that I am still a talker.  But I am finding enormous pleasure from simply listening.

Linking with Dayle as we share our Simple Pleasures.  Now tell me your stories…when did someone honor you with their story?  What did you learn when you sat and simply listened?


Joining Ann today at A Holy Experience as we pause to consider the gifts in our lives that  spill over into the sweet abundance of daily grace.

I am so thankful for a wonderful son-in-law who loves my daughter, and loves his little  girls.  A good man who loves his wife and loves his family, is such a blessing. I am so thankful my daughter and granddaughters have him.

I am thankful for lilacs blooming in abundance this year.  A bouquet is on my kitchen table, I see the bush when I look out the pantry window and  when I walk outside.  Every time they strike me with how lovely they are this year.   Beautiful purple bouquets are scattered on bushes in my yard, and all over town.

Our newest little granddaughter Addie, fills our lives with laughter and happiness. Her personality is emerging and delighting us all.

I am so thankful for a much-needed break from work. Slowing down, working in the garden, and time to simply be still fills these last spring days  with a happy peace.  For all these gifts, and so many more…I am so thankful.

Village by the Sea

Yesterday we went on a day trip to the ocean to visit my daughter and her family who are having a short vacation on the beach.  I came across this darling little village community, Seabrook, on the Washington coast.   As we drove by, I noticed it, and exclaimed to my husband  to wait and  turn around!  Being the nice guy he is, he didn’t mind at all.  I instantly fell in love with this community. I took a few pictures thinking you would like to see this charming planned village by the sea.  I love the houses built around porches, and designed like old homes.

I fell in love with this arbor and we took pictures of it.  Mine has seen better days and has beaten by the wind, so I hope to copy the design of this one and have my husband build one that is similar.

I loved, loved, this view!  The main village is not on the ocean, but a short walk down the hill. This is the view from the neighborhood;  you can see why the houses are built high up.  And they are just so charming built that way as well.

   I went online yesterday and looked at the rates to rent a little house here. Not too bad at all!  I hope to come again and rent a house and just relax enjoying the ocean and the community.  The clouds were dark, the wind was high, but a day at the ocean enjoying family was the best.

Orange Poppies

Yesterday my daughter and little granddaughters  came for a visit.  As soon as they pulled up, my daughter said Olivia exclaimed “Look at Meme’s flowers, oh I LOVE THEM!”  They were just poppies along the side of the house, their bright orange jumping out in contrast to the green.  I wondered if years from now Olivia will look at orange poppies and remember my garden.  Every time I see creeping phlox under a tree, I think of my grandmother’s garden and a rush of childhood memories comes back to me . I am glad for flowers that visit us ever season, bringing sweet memories of places we have been, and  loved ones that have passed on.

I am off work for eight glorious days. I am looking forward to slowing down and enjoying  long mornings in bed, getting my garden in order, and a few short road trips.  There is much joy in these late spring days. Flowers blooming, a few days off,  and finally being outside after a winter spent inside.   The last days of May are as full of promise as the orange poppies dancing in the breeze on a windy spring day.

Linking with Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home.

Sweet Lilac Season

I am thinking of lilac trees, that shook their purple plumes,

and when the sash was open, spread fragrance through the room.”Anna Stevens

The season only comes once a year, but it is one I look forward to every year…lilac season.  I have two bushes. This time of year I wonder why I don’t have them scattered throughout my entire backyard!  I look out the window and see the delicate purple blooms blowing in the wind, the spring rain gently falling on their leaves, and watch as they slowly open their flowers in the warm sunshine.  I pick bouquets and scatter them around my home filling the rooms with their fragrance.  I don’t think there is a season quite as lovely and sweet as when the lilacs bloom.