Coffee candles and bad apples

breakfast  Good morning and welcome to breakfast with Becky! (No, I’m not really that peppy or even that awake yet, but the fruit/granola/yogurt mixture will fix that up for me in just a little bit…well, that and the smell of coffee…but I’ll get to that in a little bit.)

I’ve read  at least 3 different blogs within the past 24 hours that apologized for their lengthy absence and vowed to try to do better. I guess this at least means I’ve got a club I can join…if I were the club-joining type.

The fact of the matter is this: life is sometimes hard and messy and complicated and busy and as much as I would love to blog every single day, there simply isn’t enough time to do that. Sometimes there is time, but there aren’t words that will go into an order that won’t alarm the general populace or make any sense to me, much less to those of you who meet me here. Sometimes, silence really is golden…and necessary.

Right now, I’m typing this on a desk that is so pile-filled with paperwork that I’m actually having to steady the keyboard and I’m using the back-button A LOT so that typos won’t drive us all to distraction. I’d move the piles, but then I’d have to start over and reset them later today and so, for now, this will have to do.

Our week started off with a trip to the ER. We left our house before 9:30 AM on Sunday morning and arrived back home just a bit before 1 AM on Monday. We are blessed. God provided up to and including chairs that were far out into the waiting room hall so that we weren’t surrounded (read TRAPPED!) in the midst of all the flu victims as we waited for my husband to get his turn for medical care and his issue should be able to resolved without further invasion. Unfortunately, the start to this week has felt a lot like the last couple of months and yet, I know it still…God is good.

My husband has returned to work and is, even now, being used of God to provide for us and I am grateful. I’m also grateful for those who have checked on us and prayed for us and loved on us in all manner of ways. I’m particularly grateful for my friends Kelley and Marsha, who have been so diligent to check on ME as well as my sweet hubby and join him in a united insistence that I take some time for myself…so I’m blogging about it. This is my ME time for today.

Yesterday was quiet and I was under specific orders from my husband to take some time to rest, so I turned on the TV to listen to old NCIS reruns (love that show!) while I cleaned out kitchen cabinets and linen closets and did laundry and bathroom chores…in my nightclothes…until 4 pm. It was great. Not, perhaps, YOUR idea of a day off, but the normalcy of it (although I do not generally do these things in my nightwear!) was a balm straight from Gilead to my soul. The ordering of life in small doses and the putting right that which has need of order is spectacularly gratifying when so much is beyond your control.

Anyway, as I sorted and assembled piles for throw away and take away/donate yesterday, I decided I’d use the new-to-me-but-really-actually-from-the-1930s/40s glass coffee container in my kitchen. I’ll post a picture of it later, but, for now, just know it is really cool. The problem is that we aren’t really big coffee drinkers. Friends and family generally bring their own stuff when they come because we’re more a juice/water/milk household here…but this jar was too cool to leave where I found it, so I brought it home. I cleaned it up and started looking for coffee to put in it. I found some, but it was pretty evident that I’d had it awhile (think: it moved from MS with me over a year ago now old!) and so I searched on. There in the back of the cabinet was a brand new unopened bag of coffee…with ancoffee candle bad apple expiration date that had passed several months ago. Well. What to do now? I wouldn’t want to drink it, but it still smelled amazing, so I made a quick decision and grabbed a vase and a candle from the back porch stash. I poured the coffee into the vase and set the candle in on top and voila! I now have an amazing coffee-candle-vase-thing that looks great and smells heavenly. It was such a pleasure to walk out this morning and inhale that wonderful aroma that I almost understand all of you people who can’t seem to start your day without drinking a cup…or twelve (yes, I also have those friends.)

 I took a photo for you to see and I really wish we had smell-o-vision for this one because it would be great! I downloaded the picture and then I noticed it…one of my apples has a bad spot on it. UGH! Well, in the interest of making the post pretty and, of course, making all of you think that I’m still that person who has it all together (HA!!) I ran back out of the room to rearrange the fruit and took another photo (see it over there? It’s the second one that looks almost like the first one!), because, seriously who wants such a great  celebration of my totally unexpectedly great coffee crafty thing to be ruined by a bad apple?! And then I started laughing at myself, because truly…who cares? The coffee candle crafty thing still smells amazing and this just tells me that I’ll be cutting off the bad spot and adding in a few others to make a nice baked apple side for supper tonight. How terrible can that be? The house will smell like coffee and baked apples tonight and all will be well…because here’s the lesson of the day:

God is good even to those of us who are control freaks. He is good to those of us who are tired and in desperate need of normal days where something–anything, please!–goes like we planned it. He is good to those of us who look like we have it all together, but really know it’s all in how you arrange your fruit and take your shot. He is good to those who will know what I’m talking about and to those who have no idea and to those who will think I’ve finally and truly lost it this time. God is just good.




I’m dreaming of…

No, not a white Christmas!  Although I do like the song, I’m from the South.  We rarely get snow here–and that’s just fine with me!  (Although it has absolutely nothing to do with this post, after mentioning the song, I feel compelled to include this photo of a typical snow at my house.  This was from 2008 and although the thermometer was stuck at the time, the temperature wasn’t that far off!)  (grin)snow 2008

There are quite a few people dreaming about different things this time of year.  It might be about presents, about the people they plan (or wish) to see, plans for travel, ideas about what 2013 might hold for them or things too personal to even say out loud.  I read two different blog column emails this morning before 8 AM about this subject…and other than the fact that both authors were ‘dreaming’ about something, the posts couldn’t have been more different.  The subject did, however, pique my interest.  I got online and started to look up quotes about dreams.  I found quite a few, but the following one really got my attention:

“If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.”  ~ Henry David Thoureau

I love this quote!  It fits right in with some of the thinking and planning that we’ve been engaged in here for the past few months–years, actually.  Starting a business can be a bit daunting.  Learning by trial and error can be costly and try your patience in ways that will astonish you.  Trying to create a busness plan that will actually become successful and have a part in your future is not for the faint of heart.   Just trying to imagine a different life for yourself can take some time to do.  Putting the dream into action–actually creating that reality for yourself is both frustrating and fabulous.  Finding out that people like something you’ve created enough to part with their cash and take it home with them–well, that can be a lot of fun!  Before the fun, however, comes a lot of hard work and a lot of hard dreaming.

We’ve been working on the schedule for next year, talking about different product line options, new ideas for how we can make our production easier–all within the confines of keeping our little busness debt-free.  It means we grow at a slower pace, but we’re convinced that this is God’s best plan for us and our business.  It fits in with what we believe He has chosen for us in the other parts of our lives.  The lives we imagine for ourselves give us the push to keep going.  The lives we imagine for ourselves can seem far away some days…and then…God shows up  and brings us a day like yesterday with calls and orders and the opportunities to help someone send “Christmas” to a loved one far away and, in the process, help make it special.

To be creative, debt-free, servant-hearted blessors who find beauty all around them and get to share God with those around them in the process…That is the life we imagine.  Those are the days we live for..dream of…