Pen and Ink...and maybe some paint

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Dear Mom...

Some of you may have seen my Wednesday post on Facebook announcing that my dear mom stepped through the gates of heaven sometime early Wednesday morning. She had been fighting the Alzheimer battle for many years as my faithful  step-dad cared for her every step of the way. These are two of the most amazing people I know, and I love them so much.

I think it was Nancy Reagan who coined the phrase, "the long good-bye" when speaking of Alzheimers. That does seem fitting. I've been missing my mom's presence since her emails began to get further apart and then stopped. At that point my wonderful step-dad began emailing me and explaining what she was going through. They live 1,000 miles away and so I flew down to see mom while she still knew who I was. I'm thankful for that visit. I think it was the next year that Bob and I went down to see her, and she seemed happy and healthy, but it was obvious she just thought we were a couple of nice people who came for a visit. It is a blow to lose the last person in the world who remembers your childhood and can laugh and recall old memories. I'm sure most of you have lost parents or a spouse. The loss of someone who shares your history and memories leaves an empty place in your heart.

There's no way around this. We will all die. But there is hope and that makes all the difference. My sweet mama has made the leap from this world, which can at times be beautiful, but which carries so much suffering and loss, to that eternal world where she is safe with her Lord. She loves the Lord with all her heart and I know she's having an exciting adventure. That makes it so much easier to see her go. Our separation is only temporary.

I had many of the same feelings when I lost Bob in the fall of 2013. At that time I didn't want to look at pictures of him when he was older. It made me think of the fact that he had been very sick when the photos were taken and we didn't know it yet. Now I can look at those older pictures and remember the happy times we had when they were taken. Many of them were photos of him holding his much loved grandchildren. Those were good times.

So, I kind of wanted to post some photos of my mom in her youth. She was a fun loving person from the looks of it and I love these old photos of her. Her name is Mary Jane and she's a southern girl. She was born and raised in Angleton, Texas. Although we later lived in Colorado for around 20 years, she and my step-dad returned to Angleton where she lived out the rest of her life and was reunited with her sisters. I'm so glad she got to spend some great years back among her southern kin.
Grandpa, Mom and Aunt Dixie.

My Aunt Patsy and Mom.

Patsy, Dixie and Mom...the three Moseman girls.

Glamorous at 16.

She was the drum major for her high school during a big parade in Houston.

That's her on the left strutting her stuff.

Mom on the right with a friend. Mom's friends called her "Bird-legs"!

Age 16, in front of her high school.

Starting to look very grown up.

We lived in Deer Park, a suburb of Houston, when this pictures was taken. Mom captioned it "Mother Hen". This was a very rare snowfall in southeast Texas!  Mom and yours truly.
We moved a lot when I was a child, but mom always made it seem like an adventure!

When Mom was in her 50's and later, she had many other adventures, and I'm so glad she got to experience so many wonderful things. She went to YWAM's Discipleship Training course and traveled to Hawaii to do the training. I am not at all sure of the year that this took place, but that's not really important. I believe as a result of this training she later took a trip to China to do some missions activities. Later still, she took a trip to Israel! She was a major support for my brother James and his family during their many years as missionaries, and she supported my homeschooling efforts for 19 years, paying for all of our curriculum. She loved to serve "behind the scenes". As she got older she told me that God was calling her to a ministry of availability. She wanted to be sure she was available when people needed someone to talk to. She said so many people are too busy to just be available for those in need. She wrote an inspirational newsletter for her church for years. She used her gift of writing in many ways and she had a lot of wisdom from studying God's Word for so many years. She was a true gift to this family and I just wanted to let everyone know how special she was...and still is! She lives on in heaven and we'll all meet again and laugh and dance with our Heavenly Father! I know He's glad to have his little girl home.

We love you, Mom!
Shalom to all!

Friday, January 20, 2017

A quick hello!

I've mostly been doing art and watching the inauguration today. I won't opine too much on politics, but I am praying that God will fill our new president with wisdom, and courage to do the right things for our country.

In the arena of art, I finished a few small pieces.

This is a painting on a tea bag. It's hard to see in this photo. It's supposed to be a tree with blossoms all over it. Tea bag painting is a big deal at the ATC site, but drying and emptying the bags is too labor intensive for me. This may be my only attempt!

 One gal asked me to make a bird painting for her.
I'm working the weekend, so I'd better get to bed. I've been enjoying visiting all of you on my blog list!
Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Puttin' on my big girl pants!

Well, it may not seem all that impressive to anyone else, but I got a couple of tasks out of the way this morning.

It's that time of year to reapply for school loan repayment plans. I always dread doing it, and it's always a lot easier than I expect. Well, the first couple of years, it seems like, I had some rough spots, but no problem this time. I was a little unclear how to handle the fact that I'm going to make less money in the coming year, but I decided to just let them use the numbers from my 2015 tax return. I only make a small payment, so it will be okay. I might have paid less or nothing if I'd wanted to talk to a real person and ask questions! :)

Next, I traveled over to the AAA website and got some roadside assistance coverage. I've been meaning to do this for a while. Being a single lady, it's good to know help is there if you need it. Of course, I have some wonderful, helpful family members I can call, but I like to have extra backup! Also, it will be good to have for our road trip this summer. I will encourage the kids to do likewise.

While I was at the AAA site I also got an auto insurance quote. It looks like I can get the same coverage for $20+/mth less and the deductibles are half of what I would pay with my current plan. Some of my kids have E-surance and recommend it. I may check it out. Anyone have any opinions?

Now I just have taxes to tackle. This is the first year I've gotten social security. I'm not sure how that's handled. I've sent an email to my step-dad, who's been helping me with my taxes since my hubby passed away, but if any of you have knowledge you'd like to share, please do. Does Social Security send me some kind of form for tax purposes? I know I have until April 18, but I like to get things done as early as I can.

Micah and Adam are looking into the possibility of renting a larger van so I can ride along with them on our trip to Texas for Jordan's wedding. Sounds good to me!

I must have a photo in this post! This is not a great shot of these cards. They're for the "Inchie, Twinchie, Moo" swap. An inchie is 1" square; a twinchie is 2" square, and a moo is 1"x2-3/4" (I think). I finished them with some glossy gel medium after I took this picture, so they're shiny and it brings out the colors more.

Well, I should get to the post office before time to help with the grandkids. I've got a deli meeting at 7p.m. and we have a birthday party on Thursday for some people in the building. I'm bringing the buns! :D So glad they're including me in the helping!

You all have a great day!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Horsin' around...

It's a lazy Sunday in Nevis. The kids and I visited a new church this morning because Micah has some friends there. It was good, but I think we'll keep going to church where we are. Adam said he doesn't like change. I have to admit, I have a strong inclination in that direction myself. The grandgirls are familiar with our Baptist church and they're involved in AWANA there. No real reason to change. In fact, I'm determined to get more involved. The new church was farther away, and I think I would hesitate to drive that far several times a week to be involved in all that's going on. Anyway, it was a learning experience. There are so many flocks one can be involved with. We're all part of His flock, and each small group can be a blessing to someone.

Well, I seem to be into horses today. I changed my header and did this ATC for someone at my swap site:
Five and a half months until my son's wedding! We will have lots of trip planning to do between now and then, plus some clothes to buy. I am not a clothes person, but I don't want to look like a frump when I meet Brooke and her family from Oregon. I know it will be HOT in Texas at the end of June, so cool is the word for clothes. Anyone have a favorite online place to buy dresses? We're out in the sticks here, so it's online or drive 90 miles to Fargo. We may do that. Micah does like to shop there sometimes. I tried to order a dress from Rose Gal, I think it's called. My card was rejected, but I found out from my bank that they block cards from being used on that site because it's in the UK and there is a lot of card fraud there. They offered to unblock my card, but I was a little nervous about it. Any advice would be appreciated! ;)

Oh! Son Josh and d-i-l Jess will also travel from Kentucky for the wedding. It will be a good little reunion!

Well, that's the most exciting thing happening right now. I just wanted to check in with the blogging world.

You all have a great week!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Ladies in Lavender...

For fans of Dame Maggie Smith and Dame Judith Dench, this is a sweet little movie, full of English cottagey-ness and atmosphere. I watched this some years back, and didn't remember much of it, so it was like watching it for the first time, lol.

Here's the link. Embedding was disabled so I can't post the video here.

Ladies in Lavender

I had to actually work this weekend. My muscles stood up and took notice. I'm looking forward to some drawing, painting and reading.

Now just for the sake of having a photo in this post, I'll show you a really bad painting of a wine bottle I made for one of my swap friends.

Everyone have a nice week! I'll be back when I have more to say. :)
And now for that ugly painting, lol.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Tweakin' the diet...

Or, should I say, discarding it for something else? Aw, that was just a fad, you guys (and y'all)! Actually, I did such a good job of throwing stuff out that I'm still kind of eating that way, but I did buy some milk, oatmeal, sugar and herbal tea at my little local grocery. I plan to use the milk and sugar sparingly. I thoroughly enjoyed a warm bowl of oatmeal with raspberries. I have missed creamy, warm foods on this diet.

I had some blood tests done this week and found out my cholesterol is at 240. My Seventh Day Adventist doctor (vegetarian) just calmly said, "Best thing is a plant-based diet." How did I know he'd say that? Dr. Erickson has been our family doctor for about 28 years. I'm not sure how up he is on the latest medical advances, but I prefer his country doctor ways to his more modern counterparts. So, I told him I'd work on that, though I'd probably get some meat in there somewhere. He was cool with that.

So, as I'm prone to do, I ran off to Amazon and ordered a couple of books! Now, I have to say, I didn't have a lot of faith in the paleo people. Most of them seemed to just be ordinary folks who had read a few books and decided to write one of their own. But I've read some books by DOCTOR Don Colbert, and I think he knows a thing or two. I ordered What Would Jesus Eat? and The Seven Pillars of Health. At least with Don you get to eat from all of the food groups! As MK reminded me in the comments, any improvement in our diets will help. I plan to glean some good stuff from these books, but not be too obsessive about it. And, now, I'll stop boring you with what I'm eating. :)

Instead, I'll tell you about my exercising, ha ha ha! Actually, I've exercised several times this week. I've done my 30 minute aerobic workout twice, and I did a 54 minute long "chair yoga for seniors" workout. I think I'll also spring for a membership at the Nevis Fitness Center. A few of the gals from the building work out there.

Otherwise, I've been doing a little babysitting and artwork. I work this weekend at the deli, but I'm cogitating about my options.

I made three more cards for the Insect swap...

 Thanks to Pom for sharing about Susan Branch's visit to the Holy Nativity Convent! This was so fascinating that I'm putting a link here. What a creative bunch of ladies, and the photos are gorgeous. Don't miss it!

I think I'm going to go read! My humble thanks to anyone who actually read this post. Not the most exciting. Hope you're all well!
God bless and lots of shalom to everyone!

Monday, January 2, 2017

30 Paintings in 30 Days...

A new challenge! Doing 30 paintings in 30 days sounded overwhelming at first. I had images of painting 30 canvases! But the main rule of the challenge is that "there are no rules"! So, an ATC counts as a painting. Hey, I'm doing that anyway. So, here are my paintings for day #1 and #2.

And other random swaps...

The Unicorn Inchies swap...
 and the God's Word Bible Verse swap.
 These two were individual swaps. One gal wanted a cow and another asked for a coyote.

Still sort of staying on the paleo diet. I'm adding in some bread just because I don't like the sloshy feeling in my stomach when just eating fruit, veggies and meat. :p I'm also going to look into finding some organic flour to make my own bread. I'm assuming organic flour isn't made from GMO seed? I have some learnin' to do! I would rather bake my own bread if it's healthier. A friend at the ATC site pointed out that modern seed is so hybridized that it has as much glucose as sugar. At least I think that's what she meant. You can find her comment on the previous post. I'm also allowing myself a dab of sugar and creamer so I can have the occasional cup of coffee. You need a hot drink in the winter, man! With tea I'll use honey. Anyway, I'm trying to do MOST of what the paleo diet says. I had a great omelette for breakfast with onion and spinach in it. Yum!
Oh! Almost forgot! Sully learned to roll over yesterday! :)

 Yup, this was the actual documentation of the first roll!

 The new Christmas pajamas...

You folks stay warm and dream big dreams for the new year! Shalom! :)