79 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 12-8-18

  1. AMC is airing some of the old Christmas classics, they ran Miracle on 34th Street (one of my favorites) earlier tonight and now White Christmas is on. I need to go to bed soon, though. πŸ™‚ I always lapse into my night owl ways when I’m not working.

    Any advice on killing and uprooting really thick, deep vine roots? Asking for a friend who’s trying to do the job herself but it sounds like it’s too much for her. I suggested she check around online, or, better yet, go to a local nursery with some photos to get some personal advice. She and her brother, both in their 60s, are laboring for hours and days on end to remove these things so they can build a new fence in the backyard and they’re not making much progress. They don’t have a gardener who would be my go-to person for things like that. I admire her tenaciousness and determination to do these jobs on her own (her husband is in his 70s and not able to help), but it really sounds like something a couple young guys/day laborers could do much more easily and quickly for maybe not all that much money in the end. My friend had back surgery about 10 years ago so doesn’t have that much strength either and it’s probably an unnecessary strain.

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  2. Re: the travel stories from yesterday:
    I was a radio operator in the AF. Crew has it better than those who are stand by passengers and hop a plane just because it is going somewhere. They have no good seating facilities nor flight attendants.
    I flew a couple of those on my trip from Arabia to Westover, Mass. Passengers have it rough.
    The crew was up there drinking coffee while we were strapped into seats on the side of the plane. They did have common honey pots (I think that’s what they called them if I remember correctly.)

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  3. I don’t know what women did. I never flew on a stand by flight that carried women.
    We had one plane that we called “the plush job”. It had comfortable airline seats. We used it to carry VIP. I never, that I remember, flew on it.

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  4. The rain is here. Flash flooding is in our forcast. I have to run errands today in the cold rain. My Word Weavers got cancelled. Is it possible to crawl back into bed and get up a month later with all the crummy stuff behind me? I hope I can get my repaired glasses today so at least I can see life more clearly. I hope they tinted the lens with rose.

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  5. The photo was taken the day we had the ice storm.

    First I waited to go out until my husband declared it safe, and then I started by taking photos of our burning bushes, a couple of which have been posted. Then I walked down to my little pond, (a photo of the stand of trees beside the pond has been posted), along the way stopping in a gas station parking lot to get some photos of the trees full of berries encased in ice (photo posted). By the time I got to the berries, the ice was clearly beginning to thaw and drip, so I hurried along, really wanting some pond photos.

    I got back home and the dripping was everywhere. I could see a flock of a couple hundred birds flying from one tree to another, and in this tree with berries some were eating the berries. Starlings and cedar waxwings look much the same in flight–their bodies (including wings) are much the same size and shape, and so they have similar shapes, flight patterns, and even similarities of gathering into flocks in winter. These trees are over behind the condo I live in, on the next block. I zoomed in to get some photos, but also to see if the species were such it was worth continuing over there. See, by this time the melting was going on in earnest, and the trees were dripping and basically with a bit of a breeze water was getting flung everywhere, and I was getting wet and so was my camera. For my camera’s sake I was hesitant to stay out any longer and go around the block to get closer, but had I seen cedar waxwings, I would have.

    What showed up as I zoomed in were mostly starlings (like this photo) but a few robins as well. This particular photo of thawing berries and starlings makes me think somehow of Asian (Oriental) art. The bird with its beak open makes the photo, along with the group of three nicely silhouetted in pleasing bird shapes, forming a semi-circle at top left. The one in the middle of those birds shows enough feather detail that you can see these are starlings in winter plumage, but they are nearly silhouettes and the berries could almost be blossoms.

    I got home, diligently dried my camera (I had to zoom the lens in and out a number of times) and put the photos onto my computer. And when I brought up the photos, one photo showed four or five cedar waxwings! So there were some in the flock. Once my camera was dry, I decided to go out just to try to get more pictures of the flock, and ideally some photos of this scene at a closer zoom. Dozens of birds, probably a couple hundred, were gathered in a few trees, mostly a large one with bare branches. They flew into the air in one big whir as starlings do, and moved to other trees (including this one with berries). I moved a bit closer to the tree with berries to get more photos. Well, both starlings and waxwings are noteworthy for hanging out in flocks that will move within an area, a few birds at a time, maybe making their way gradually down a row of trees or through a backyard’s lawn. And both species will suddenly, without warning, also leave an are en masse. And that’s what they did to me before I got a single photo taken from closer range of any birds on the berries–they took off and left the block altogether. I also hadn’t actually seen any waxwings with my eyes, just a few in one photo. The berries themselves were by that time mostly thawed and not ice-encased and not really pretty. But I did get this one painting-like photo zoomed in from the next block over and a few photos of the birds in flight from one tree to the next (and one photo of a starling with a berry in its beak). This one is the best of them.

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  6. BTW, I don’t know how many birds are in the photo. I did crop it a bit; there were more birds down on the lower right, but none of the birds showed particularly well except those in the upper left, and I wanted a close enough crop to let the focus really be on them. But the whole flock was about two hundred squawking birds.

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  7. BTW, my husband was wondering about chronological Bibles, and I told him a chronological plan had been posted on here in the past. As we come into the final year of the month, is it time to post the Bible-reading plans link again?

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  8. Good morning. Whew, it’s been a busy week, but absolutely, literally, awesomely great! (Had to throw in that little tidbit from an earlier conversation on here.) πŸ™‚

    Tuesday my middle school boy piano student brought in a Christmas piece that he will play in church on the 16th. It’s an arrangement of O Holy Night that his mom had played as a piano student in her youth.

    He has been playing it at home but forgetting to bring it to his lesson, so this week was the first time I saw the music and heard him play the part he’s been working on. When he played it for me, he started out very well, and I was thinking, wow, this is very nice. But around the last line of the first page (of three), the harmonies started changing to non-diatonic tones involving the use of black keys, rather than all white keys, as is the case with C Major, the key of the arrangement. And that’s where everything started breaking down for him. He lost track of keeping the beat as he struggled to find where to put his fingers, and when easier harmonies returned, he just couldn’t get the flow back.

    So we worked on the mechanics of the hand motion needed to do the broken chords that were using some black keys and some white keys. I closed the piano lid and had him finger the pattern on the fallboard, so that he didn’t have to concern himself with the sound that those keys made; only the positioning and movement of the fingers/hand/wrist from side to side.

    When I opened the piano back up and he played the left hand part with that motion on the actual keys, he did it perfectly after only a few tries. Then we added the melody hand to it, and that went well, too. Then both hands going into, through, and out of the problem area, and he did that, too! I was simply thrilled. πŸ™‚

    I could see out of the corner of my eye that his mom was sitting up straight on the edge of the couch cushions, appearing to be watching very closely how we were working on this piece. (She often falls asleep during her son’s lesson, but she seemed to be quite alert this week.)

    We got a lot accomplished in that lesson, and when they were preparing to go, mom told me she thinks I’m an excellent teacher. Oh, my, I just about cried at such kindness. There were so many years I didn’t know how to help students target problem areas. God’s been good to help me learn as I teach. To Him be the glory!

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  9. And what a day Wednesday! That was my super-busy day. I left the house around 7:30 in the morning, drove to the middle school in a city a ways south of me where I was to practice with the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade choirs.

    Only half of the seventh graders were present that day (it sounds like a scheduling thing — some go to choir on even days, some on odd days, apparently), but I had the whole sixth grade choir and the whole eighth grade bunch, too. There are over 200 kids between the three full choirs! And there were quite a few live wires among them!

    The practices were a little rough — it was the first time the kids were singing their parts with the piano accompaniment — but they had some lovely tone. By the next day, practice went much better.

    Oh, it was so cute on the first day when the 6th graders came into the room. There are 71 kids in that choir, and most of them filed right past me as I sat at the piano. A lot of them did look at me and smile, unlike the 7th and 8th graders, who didn’t see it as a big deal that someone new was behind the piano. πŸ™‚

    But, anyway, the cute thing with the 6th graders was that one little girl, before taking her seat, came right up to me behind the piano and just stood there smiling. Not saying a word, just smiling and looking like she was waiting for me to say something to her. πŸ™‚

    So I did. I held out my hand to shake hands with her and to tell her my name. She smiled, shook my hand, said her name was Leah, then bounced away to her chair. πŸ™‚

    I had to smile myself, because that girl looks SO MUCH like my youngest niece, who lives on the East Coast. And their mannerisms are so alike. Almost like having my niece standing right there by my side. Really special because I don’t get to see her much more than about once a year.

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  10. Morning! I could only count 6 birds…maybe if I have one more cup of coffee I will see 8 or 9!! They are pretty none the less!
    Supposed to have a nice day around here and I am determined to stay home. I get so weary of driving all around and getting nothing done here nor there….ever feel like a hamster on the wheel going nowhere…that is how I have been feeling lately and I need to get off that wheel!!

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  11. After the practices Wednesday morning, I had a few hours to myself, so I grabbed some lunch, went shopping at a music store (surprise, surprise!), went to the main branch library in that city to read a book I had brought along), and then met my composer friend for tea and a chat at 2:00.

    Joyce and I had a wonderful discussion about the music publishing business these days, and she’s got the scoop on so many of today’s composers of student piano repertoire. I learned so much from her, and was especially pleased at how willing she was to give me advice on some of my compositions, which I brought along to our meeting.

    She’s a tell-it-like-it-is person, and encouraging at the same time. I showed her the piece I wrote at the end of August, and her constructive criticism of it was so good! She told me I’ve got two pieces in that one piece, and showed me how the last about 1/3 of it is like a different piece — more complex than the earlier part, so as not to be really at the same level.

    She gave me an example. In one measure, my right hand was almost the same as the right hand part four measures earlier. She asked me why I did it differently the second time. I responded that I did that for variety. To which she replied that my left hand was already doing something different in that whole section of the piece than it had been doing in the early measures, and that also changing the right hand part would be doing even more things differently.

    I’d honestly never thought of that.

    She also pointed out that the whole right hand part in that last section was harder than early in the piece because the hand shape needed to play it would often require the span of an octave, rather than a span of a fifth with a little bit of thumb under, or other fingers crossing over the thumb, like in the first part.

    I sat in awe at how she could look at my manuscript and give such incisive comments about what was going on in the piece, and where improvements could be made.

    She did like the “sound” of my piece, drawn from her inner hearing. πŸ™‚

    What a blessing it was for me to have an experienced composer give me free comments for my benefit. She wouldn’t even let me buy her her tea. πŸ˜‰

    We chatted about other things that afternoon, too. Her daughter in Maryland had visited her last week, and Joyce said they went to the Mall of America. She told me she got to cross off one item from her bucket list on that trip — she rode the zip line at MoA. πŸ™‚

    Did I mention she is in her eighties?!! I just loved that story. She’s always been bold and adventurous, and she’s not about to stop yet. πŸ™‚

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  12. After I met with Joyce, I went back home, and within an hour, 5th & 6th Arrows and I were on the road again, headed to Advent supper and the worship service. After that, I stuck around for choir practice. (3rd Arrow also was there for that, and the service, as she came from work, which had finished a little before the service time.)

    We’ll be singing in the two Christmas Eve services.

    We got home around 8:30 that night, which was about 13 hours after I’d first left home that morning. (Which included about one hour at home between 4:00 and 5:00 pm.)

    Very unusual.

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  13. Has anyone noticed this movie trailer on Youtube about World War I? For those of us interested in Michelle’s recent research and novel, it is almost a must see.

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  14. And the next morning I was back in the city, at the high school auditorium where the middle schoolers would be giving their concert that night, by 7:20 a.m.

    I got to see the sunrise that Mumsee enjoys telling us about. πŸ™‚

    There were moments, as the accompanist for the choirs, where I didn’t have any playing to do. The directors worked a fair amount with the kids on how to walk on and off the risers, how to file on and off the stage, how to align themselves around the neighboring students so they could see their director, etc.

    I got to take in the facial expressions, the body language, and other aspects of the kids’ presence during some of those moments.

    I found myself wondering what stories their eyes, their faces, are telling. More than 200 kids, as I said earlier. Some looked sad. Some looked hopeful. I don’t have words for everything I saw in that sea of faces.

    I knew none of those children. What was their home life like? What thoughts were on their mind that maybe had nothing to do with school, or singing?

    There were perfect opportunities to pray, and I did so silently more than once over that two-day period that I was with those children.

    You know what was the neatest blessing? Each of the four groups who performed Thursday night — the three grades I mentioned, plus the 7th/8th grade show choir — sang at least one sacred Christmas song. These were public school kids. I’m glad their directors chose music that spoke of Jesus.

    One was a piece called Christmas Samba. Catchy syncopated rhythms paired with lyrics about Jesus’ birth, the angels’ announcement, and the like.

    How many of those children, or perhaps their parents in the audience, will hear of Jesus this season besides through this concert?

    Will you join me in praying for these precious children? God is at work everywhere, and it was a blessing for me to step into this temporary situation and see more evidence of God’s love.

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  15. Cheryl @ 9:09
    I have a Victory Bible Reading Plan. It is an ambitious chronological plan in which you read the OT& NT through in a year. But you read the Gospels twice and the Psalms twice.
    an example:
    February 1:
    1 Ps. 32 Acts 4 Ex. 13-14.
    The OT can get tedious and most people cannot get through a real chronological reading plan because of OT begets, etc.
    It is from
    Omega Publications
    PO Box 1788
    Medford, Or. 97501
    I sent them $10.00 and they sent me a bunch.
    I can mail you one if you want. I have enough to last me for years. You use one a year.

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  16. πŸ™‚ Peter
    Your link showed me everything but where it is snowing.
    My phone says it will snow here early tomorrow.
    And my phone wouldn’t lie to me.
    πŸ˜†

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  17. This year I’ve been reading the NKJV Chronological Bible that 1st Arrow gave to me. Right now I’m behind, but not by so much that I wouldn’t be able to finish it by the end of the month.

    I decided this month to make my own Bible reading plan for next year. I’m not going to read through the entire Bible this time. Sometimes I like to take a slower pace and go more in depth with the areas I choose.

    For background, before I mention my new plan, I’ll tell you that the children and I have had a yearly tradition for some time now in which we listen to Handel’s Messiah over the course of 25 days in December. Each day includes at least one recitative, aria, and/or chorus (there are a couple instrumental-only pieces in it, too), along with the Bible verses on which the song texts are based. I found the curriculum on a homeschooling website years ago, and we follow that reading and listening plan from December 1-25.

    For 2019, I plan to do my individual Bible reading in the 28 chapters that feature a text from Messiah. There are 26 weeks in a half year, so I will do the 28 chapters in 26 weeks by combining four of the short chapters into two 2-week periods, and doing one chapter a week for the other 24.

    Then in the second half of the year, I’ll do the same again.

    I think reading the wider context of the particular verses used in Messiah, and spending a whole week on just one chapter (most of the time) will broaden my understanding of these verses that I’ve come to so love. I’m looking forward to not having huge amounts of reading that I feel like I have to hurry through to stay on schedule.

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  18. Yesterday I went down by the pond and also walked a bit on the walking trail; it was 19 degrees according to the bank sign when I went out, and the pond was completely frozen over. Probably not deeply frozen, but frozen across the whole surface. (The creek was running, however; just standing water froze.) I don’t know how cold it was when I returned; I forgot to check, but probably not warmer than 22 or 23.

    I was out walking for two hours, and on my return I thought to myself: Just try to tell that Arizona-bred teenager that in thirty to forty years she will be walking around outside for two hours, voluntarily, in twenty-degree weather!

    We moved to northern Arizona when Dad retired, when I was fifteen. We lived there for two years, about 27 months. (I’m not sure exactly when we moved or moved back, but we waited for my sister to graduate from eighth grade and then moved shortly after, and my dad died in June two years later and we moved back sometime that fall.) The area where we lived up north was a few degrees cooler than Phoenix, with an inch or two more of precipitation each year, and it got a small snowfall or two each year. I had seen snow once, half an inch in Flagstaff when I was ten and my parents took us up there to see snow and they were disappointed how little was there, but we had not yet had snow in Phoenix in my lifetime (we did have it once after we moved back down). My brother and sister had yearned for snow each year, but I didn’t. We also didn’t have cold-weather clothing. I had a pair of mittens and a stocking cap from childhood, but no coat or ear muffs or scarf, and when Dad wanted us to help him outside in twenty-degree weather (which happened a few times) I would layer sweaters until I could hardly move–I remember how stiff my arms were–but still feel cold. (I was about 105 pounds at the time, and in Phoenix it hadn’t gotten down to freezing, even overnight, any of the previous three winters. My family teased me because anything under 70 made me put on a sweater. Twenty degrees was thus bitterly cold to me.)

    One day we had a couple of inches of snow. My little brother and sister were delighted–they had literally waited all their lives for this. Generally they played together and I did something else, so that day they excitedly went out to play in the snow and I watched them through the window, with no sense of jealousy that they were together (I was used to that) or that they were playing in the snow (I had zero interest in playing in snow, even as a child, and at 15 or 16 I wasn’t yet old enough to be willing to be childish, and I detested cold), but it was interesting to watch them. My dad watched me watching them, and he kept suggesting I go out there too, with less and less patience. Finally he outright told me to go outside. So I put on some warm clothing, went out the back door, ran around half the house, and came in again at the front door. It was very much “letter of the law” obedience, but I got my point across: I did not want to be outside in the cold, even for the dubious pleasure of playing in snow. After that he let me be.

    And as I was walking around yesterday for two full hours, watching a family of bluebirds and finding exquisite colorful leaves decorated with long crystals of frost, I thought how different that could have been, if instead of trying to get me to go out and play in the snow (which held no interest) with siblings who didn’t need or want me to join them, if I had been given a coat and gloves and a camera that actually shot good pictures, and someone had suggested I could go out and get pictures of what I could find. Undoubtedly it was really beautiful out that day, but I never even saw that–I knew only that it was cold, that I didn’t want to touch it and certainly didn’t want to “play” in it, and that I didn’t have adequate clothes to go hang out in it anyway.

    It took me several more years, until I was 22 and a freshman in college, to realize how beautiful snow could be. It was December, and I had gone with fellow students in the evening to a church where we taught children once a week. We parked the car and we walked the last block or two. It was lightly snowing and I realized for the first time how magical snow could be. I had yet to build my first snowman–that came the following year–or engage in my first snowball fight, and I have never been sledding or ice skating (and probably never will). Playing in snow still holds very little interest for me, but I do see its beauty, and the beauty of ice or frost.

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  19. 6 Arrows, our new church uses NKJV, and it isn’t a version my husband has used before. I just told him amazon has several such Bibles, and he was going to look them up. Thank you. He and I both grew up with KJV, and our previous church used ESV. What he used in between, I don’t know. Maybe NASB.

    I grew up with KJV, and used it until I was 18. At 18 I saw a pretty little NKJV, and I had been thinking about trying another version and thought that would make a nice, easy break to another one, and so I bought it. I used it for the next 18 years, until my church in Nashville used the ESV, and I had already been hearing good things about that version. Well, in the last year or two the ESV made some “concerning” changes in their newest update, and my husband and I were considering moving away from it. So our new church using the NKJV gave us good timing and a good choice for a new (but to me also old) version. Before I went with the NKJV at 18, I had had some thoughts of trying the NASB, but I didn’t like it that it used the thee / thou for God. That was really an “artificial” distinction, using “you” for people but “thee / thou” for God, and in the late 1980s or early 1990s the NASB went ahead and dropped that affectation, but by that time I was already using the NKJV. So I would consider the NASB or the CSB now, but using the same version our church uses (assuming they use a good one) seems as good a way as any to make the decision. If they used the NIV, I’d use something different, and if they used the Message or some other paraphrase, I wouldn’t want to go there. But NKJV is a good choice.

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  20. I remember standing amid a snowfall on a friends’ farm in NY a few years back, watching the oxen nearby and enjoying (it was so quiet!) what was already a beautiful, snow-covered hillside; and later, walking through an icy forest of trees, magical. I’ve never minded the cold.

    Our Girl Scout troop went to “snow camp” in the mountains most years while I was growing up — we’d toboggan down the hillsides and have a generally silly time. A couple years, though, we were disappointed to find only a little bit of snow once we got there.

    I have “The Daily Reading Bible” that I prefer, mainly because the format is already laid out for each day’s reading (following the M’Cheyne Bible Reading program). I don’t always get the readings done each day, but found it’s easiest to pick up fresh on whatever day it is when I can get back to it (rather than trying to go back and read a few days to try to “catch up”).

    I don’t think Crossway publishes that Bible anymore. The binding on mine is coming loose but otherwise it’s in good condition still.

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  21. I still haul around my trusty, 30-year-old NASB mostly, though I believe our church readings are from the NKJV, which I also like. I’ve used ESV also but am not familiar with ‘recent’ changes that may have been made to that. I know that the NASB made changes that were problematic in more recent years, but the old one that I have was considered one of the most accurate translations at the time.

    Remember when the NIV was all the rage? That’s pretty much dropped off the map, from what I can tell?

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  22. I like the NKJV. I am not sure what I will do for Bible study this next year. It’s time to think about it!

    My glasses were not ready. It is very drippy outside and cold. I got some good camelia photos out by the eye doctor’s office. I am not sure why my phone seems to have dropped the email address for sending photos to wandering views. Has anything changed with that? I figure it is something not working right with my phone.

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  23. Cheryl your describing the cold wintry days of the Midwest makes me so incredibly homesick. There are creeks and ponds all over this wonderful country but there is nothing quite like the ones in Ohio and Indiana…I have enjoyed both as a child and adult. Just at the memory brings a longing to return. My uncle’s farms have been sold and some of the old homesteads are gone now. My sister lives on a farm in Ohio on the Indiana border so I am sure I could make some connection of the sweet memories there 😊 (something about this time of year gets me all sappy!!) πŸŽ„ ⛄️

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  24. Ah, yes, nothing like a warm snowy day. If only we had those temperatures all winter. It was -10F this morning. But it is sunny and beautiful out. There is still very thick hoarfrost on the trees.

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  25. Bible reading: I start at the beginning of Genesis, Ecclesiastes, and Matthew and read through. When I get to the end, I start over. And I keep reading through Psalms every day and read through Proverbs once a month, a chapter a day and sometimes two at the end. It has worked well for me for several years, I expect to continue.

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  26. Currently I am reading the NKJV. I read 2 OT chapters and 1 NT. I try to read from a different translation every so often just for a different perspective. It helps to keep the word from going stale by reading the same version all the time. Bible Gateway is handy for getting many different translations.

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  27. We got home after midnight, so I didn’t see any of the family until this morning. Early this afternoon, Second and I went visiting with some deliveries from the church Second and family now attends, which is the church my family used to attend when we were very young children. I spent a couple of hours telling some very old family friends who still pray for me about my experiences.

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  28. ENORMOUS THANKSGIVING NEWS AND A BLESSED CHRISTMAS GIFT.
    UPS delivered a box to my door this afternoon. It was Miss Maddie’s Fisher-Price Nativity Set, so after I set it up under the tree I took a photo and sent it to Michelle. After all, it was her idea.

    She is traveling and cannot get on the blog to tell all of us that her daughter in law is 20 weeks pregnant with a little girl “measuring normal”. Michelle says she has been a wreck for 10 weeks praying.
    Let’s all continue to pray for this New Baby Girl. You all know I am a sucker for a Baby Girl.

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  29. I have used alternative translations over the years, and paraphrases. That is a good idea, but I have yet to reach the heights and depths of this translation, not stale yet. New ever morning. Of course, I read the Ring Trilogy and Hobbit over and over and over and it is new every day also so I guess that says something else about me.

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  30. Ugh, this is my back-and-forth shopping day. Need to exchange stucco screws for the address sign, the one’s I bought aren’t long enough I’m told.

    Found part of a gift for one of my friends, just need something else to go with it and a couple other gifts and I’m done with that. I found some boxes for the Angel Tree gifts so will get those ready to take to church tomorrow.

    πŸ™‚ Michelle’s family news, thanks for passing it on.

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  31. I wish I could read.
    Everything I read now is on my kindle or other device where I can enlarge the print.

    I have a large print Bible, but still use a magnifying glass for passages I don’t already know. I am thinking of getting one of those audible bibles I see advertised on TV.

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  32. Blessed news indeed! Conintuing lifting all up before our Lord…. πŸ’•
    My Bible is an NIV….before they went changing things. On my kindle I read ESV because that is what our Pastor and our small group leader uses. But when I want to memorize a scripture I go to the KJV….
    I am sitting her laughing because my husband purchased a battery type vacuum β€œkind of like the Dyson” and today it arrived after being shipped on a slow boat from China. Something about needing an adapter for US current….and then there is a problem with it not having a battery…umm…ok πŸ˜‚ (I believe he just wasted 80 dollars…sometimes cheap is…cheap!)

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  33. Aren’t you glad you live in the day of devices so you can continue to read? I just received a nice Christmas note from a friend/prayer warrior. She will be ninety eight on Christmas Day and keeps busy with the different activities in her retirement center. She does not write like she used to, though she still has beautiful penmanship. But she can enlarge the font on her computer so she can write from there! And she listens to lots of audio books and Bible. She has been praying for our family for twenty years. I pray for her. God uses her.

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  34. Well I am sitting here not her…and he is now telling me it has a battery but he has no way to charge the battery due to the European plug. He wonders why would the Chinese company send something to America with a European plug? I suppose he will have to see if he can locate an adapter…he is taking it all in stride and we are having a bit of a chuckle over it all…after all he ordered it well over a month ago I guess he is just happy they actually sent it to him…

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  35. I have an adapter. They make travel adapters that will work. I have lots of adapters for the Australian plugs as that is what is used here and in NZ.
    Of course here we also use 240v, which is why I think my ipad has had a problem.

    Chas, they make the ipad in a large size now. On an ipad, it is just like your smart phone, they have a kindle app that would let you read all of your kindle books. Of course you can make the font whatever size you like, but I think it would help to also have a larger page.

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  36. 3 in a row…..

    The winners of the Commander in Chief’s trophy outright, a #25 in the country ranking, and a bowl game. πŸ™‚

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  37. DJ, the ESV people have gotten into the ESS debate. (Familiar with that? Eternal subordination of the Son–basically the idea that Jesus is eternally subordinate to the Father, and also that women will continue to be subordinate to men in eternity . . . never mind that in this world wives are subordinate to their husbands but not all women to all men–and a couple of years ago a passage in Genesis was “retranslated” in the ESV to reflect a reading that language experts agree it doesn’t have.)

    If you aren’t familiar with that and want to read more, I can probably look up a link. The Aquila Report had quite a bit on it a year or two ago. Several theologians urged the ESV not to set that change in stone, and they did it. (They had been making quiet little changes to the translation all along, but they announced they had made one last series of changes and wouldn’t change the translation any more, and theologians urged them to undo that particular change, that it was a bad one, but they kept it. At that point my husband I lost confidence in their translation philosophy. Though the edition we have is from before that change was made, it’s still just a bit “icky” that they made it, and we’re happy enough to move to a different translation.) Of course, the NKJV is a Thomas Nelson “product,” and Nelson is not particularly tied to orthodoxy. So there is no such thing as perfection, unfortunately even in Bible translation work.

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  38. Nancy Jill, I love Indiana, far more than I ever expected to, and I can happily be a Hoosier for life. But my own “homesickness” is for the Southwest. My favorite brother’s birthday is today, and I talked to him earlier this evening. He and his wife are heading to Phoenix next week. In the last year or two (I think all in 2018, but I can’t swear to it) my husband’s only sibling and half of my six siblings will have been to Phoenix, and I haven’t been since my mom’s funeral (2003, 15 years). And I am probably the one of us who most loves the desert and Arizona.

    I would love to take a week or two there, show my husband where I grew up, and go out with a good camera to get shots of things I love (cactus and desert birds and Arizona sunsets). I don’t know if I will ever be able to do that, but I would really love to. If Mom still lived there, obviously we would have been by now, but it’s harder to justify the expense when there is no family left there to visit and when a visit means an additional expense of a hotel room. (Two of my brothers have in-laws there, but I’m not in touch with anyone in Arizona anymore.)

    Liked by 1 person

  39. Cheryl, I have returned to places in SC that I left long ago.
    It ain’t there anymore.
    Not even Northern Virginia. A few years ago, I revisited the place where I lived in Annandale where we used to live 15 years before. .
    It ain’t there no more.
    Not even the little patch of woods we walked through to get to the playground that is gone.

    A strange thing happened in Fort Worth, though.
    A few years ago we took Chuck & Linda to Fort Worth to see where Chuck was born and lived as a child.
    We went to Travis Avenue BC to visit. They had just finished a renovation and it looked exactly as it did when we left about 35 years before.

    Liked by 2 people

  40. I swapped the stucco screws for concrete anchors based on the advice of the second Lowe’s guy who helped me. These I think will work — for my *very* Southwest house address sign. Now to find someone with the drill to install it …

    I put out what was a very modest outdoor decoration today, using all battery lights and wreaths, with a couple large poinsettia plants on either side of the door. It looks nice. I may add some more battery lights.

    Just down the street from us is the biggest inflatable snowman I’ve ever seen, it looks to be taller than the house and is anchored to the yard by ropes. Stunning.

    Cheryl, I do remember reading something about some ESV changes that weren’t good, I didn’t remember the details. So discouraging. 😦 When it was released, it was considered the go-to version for accuracy.

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  41. I was so happy to see that our first Hollywood (tile-roofed Spanish) rental apartment was still standing when i decided to drive by a few weeks ago. πŸ™‚ So cute, I can see why Iowa-transplant mom loved it so much at the time.

    Liked by 1 person

  42. We are snowed in in Greensboro. I have about 5 inches of snow on my deck. It’s still falling.
    My phone says it will snow all day. And my phone wouldn’t lie to me..

    Liked by 2 people

  43. The FABC announcement of no services today, nor pre-school tomorrow showed up on my spam filter. I almost didn’t see it.
    ;-(

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  44. I have not seen so much snow in a long time. It is still forty two in my bedroom. It has been that for several days. It s seventy here by the stove. But we will be off to church, that means I need to go outside and start the car so it can thaw before we get in.

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  45. It’s sunny here.

    I got the Angel Tree gifts wrapped, it was quite a trick wrapping two little boxes the same size and tying them together. Not the neatest wrapping job I’ve ever done, but it works.

    There was a skunk nearby last night, I woke up to the worse smell permeating the bedroom (where a closet window was open — I figured out that must have been why it smelled so strong). Sheesh.

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  46. The new trees are still from the ice storm, some trees next to my little pond. They and the grass had a shimmery look that was rather magical, though not perhaps as pretty as the ice-covered berries and colored leaves.

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Cheryl, 1:14 pm yesterday, I really like the NKJV Bible. We don’t use it at our church, but it has come to be my favorite translation since reading through it this year. Our church has used the NIV for a long time (including through some of its textual changes, which, IMO, have made it worse), but I’ve generally preferred to carry my KJV to church and Bible studies to “follow along” in there.

    I have an ESV that I read last year. I’m not sure which year’s version it is, but I mostly liked reading it, though there were a couple areas, IIRC, that made me go hmmm. I don’t remember if the ESS philosophy (I hesitate to call it a doctrine) was apparent in it.

    Back to the NKJV: I might decide to buy one that is in regular Bible book order to bring to church instead of my KJV. I could use the NKJV Chronological Bible (from 1st Arrow) for that, but it takes extra steps to find, say, Malachi chapter 1, because, chronologically, it’s not the last book of the Old Testament. And some books are interrupted by other books, so it makes it hard to know where in the Bible one might find a certain chapter. My Chronological Bible has an index in the back, listing the starting page number of each chapter of the Bible, but going to the index is an extra step I’d prefer to skip if I could.

    Peter, 2:23 pm yesterday, I read the book of Jeremiah one year (52 chapters, 1 chapter a week) using Bible Gateway for some of those months — to read from a different translation each day of the week. I was amazed at how many different translations there are! Some, of course, being much better than others, but comparing different versions sometimes helps illuminate the meaning of a passage more clearly.

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  48. On to another topic: what I call my Neighbors, Neighbors, and Pet Report. πŸ™‚

    Neighbors at the front of our dead-end road: They put their house up for sale this year, and there was a little bit of interest shown toward their listing, but no takers. This week I learned they decided that not only were they taking their house off the market, they’ve decided to stay here for good. They are good neighbors, and I am glad they will continue living on this little road out in the country.

    Neighbors at the back of our road: A few years back, a big company in our area bought their house and land, and then rented it out to them. Two days after I heard about our other neighbors deciding to stay here, I heard that the company who bought the land and house of our back-of-the-road neighbors has decided they don’t want a house back there anymore. Their family of five was given three months to find someplace else to live. The deadline was December 1. They moved to town last week. 😦

    And the pet report is that their cat doesn’t like being indoors. She’s mainly an outdoor cat, but that doesn’t work well with living in town, so…

    we have a new cat now. πŸ™‚

    And that’s the pet report: one turtle, one neutered male cat, and one spayed female cat. Olive, Mr. Todd, and Pepsi.

    Today is Day 2 of Pepsi being here. We’ll see how the introductions between the two cats go. So far they’ve been apart, having the garage, the shed, and the outdoors as places to be. Oh, and the newest one has been in the house and does not seem to be afraid of it.

    Sixth Arrow is loving this whole managing the pets business. πŸ™‚

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  49. Yes, cats are very territorial so they’ll just try to make their way back “home” if you try to move them. We lost a cat that way when I was little, I was heartbroken but remember my mom trying to explain to me how cats just will try to get back to their own territory (which in that case may have been a distance; I’m sure we looked for him or her, but never turned the cat up; hopefully someone took it in).

    I keep the pet door closed at night now so even though the smell sure made it seem like that skunk was inside, he wasn’t; I did worry he might be under the house, but my vents are pretty secure. There was even a whiff of eau de skunk inside my Jeep this morning. I’m telling you, skunks were given nature’s best defense mechanism, they’ll survive us all.

    More decorating to do today.

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  50. I have some new neighbors 3 doors down, they bought a very cute little craftsman house.

    I never went down for the open house events the realtor had, but I did look at the inside pics online — coolest part was the kitchen was mostly still all original with the tiles, cabinetry, etc. Living room looked like it had been redone somewhat, there were likely some built-ins taken out, but it still looked nice and appropriate to the age of the house with gleaming wood floors. Some windows had been replaced through the years out of necessity, but it also still had windows with the antique ‘wavy’ glass (I have those, too).

    Liked by 1 person

  51. We had over a foot of snow. I didn’t measure it, but it is very deep. Freezing rain now. I would rather have snow, it doesn’t cause trouble like ice does.forecast is for it to continue until about noon tomorrow.
    Thankfully, I don’t have to go anywhere and we are well stocked. I planned for this..

    Liked by 5 people

  52. Grandpa Joe turned ninety five this past week. He spent his birthday in the hospital but is home and feeling much better now. He looked much better at church this morning. As usual, he told about how he was allowed to testify for Christ there in the hospital when people kept asking how he managed to stay alive so long and so well. Somebody commented that much as we don’t want him in the hospital, he always ocmes back with a story of how he got to share Christ.

    He also writes a weekly article about relationship with God for our weekly paper. And goes to schools with his story of his time at Utah Beach on DDay. He always talks about God and how He was working in the people there.

    Liked by 4 people

  53. Whenever we moved we wouldn’t see our cat for a couple of weeks. Then we moved back to our original home. The cat went wild in the sense that it was just running around with joy, no hiding once we brought her back to what was home for her.

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  54. It was 32 when we headed into town for church this morning. It is now 44 in this forest but it does feel colder with the breeze. I must say I am a tad bit envious of all that lovely snow the east is getting….somebody needs to jump hard on this side of the country and tilt that weather pattern to us!!! 🌎 ❄️ πŸŽ„ 😜

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  55. Cheryl, in the current header, what’s that dark spot about halfway up the biggest tree farthest left that isn’t cut off the left side of the picture? (The base of the tree is an inch or a little less from the left side of the frame.)

    At first I wondered if I was looking at a pileated woodpecker there, but on closer examination, it appears too small, and maybe not a bird at all? Maybe a dark knot hole, or a place where woodpeckers may have been active chipping away at the tree?

    The whole picture has an ethereal quality to it. Cool image.

    Liked by 1 person

  56. The rain finally stopped. I went to a church friend’s birthday party today. There was quite a good attendance, more than I expected. The home of the event is about a mile from our home yet I had never traveled over to that neighborhood. I had a general idea of where to go but had lost the address. I got to the street I thought it was on and looked for a house with cars. Luckily, it was the right house! I was afraid I might be walking into the wrong party!πŸ˜…

    Liked by 2 people

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