Here we are at the beginning of a new year! I came across this wonderful poem written around one hundred years ago.

The Land of Beginning Again

I wish that there were
some wonderful place
In the Land of Beginning Again;
Where all our mistakes
and all our heartaches
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a
shabby old coat at the door
And never put on again.

I wish we could come on it
all unaware,
Like the hunter
who finds a lost trail,
And I wish that the one
whom our blindness had done
The greatest injustice of all
Could be there at the gates
like an old friend that waits
For the comrade
he's gladdest to hail.

We would find all the things
we intended to do
But forgot, and
remembered too late,
Little praises unspoken,
little promises broken,
And all of the
thousand and one
Little duties neglected
that might have perfected
The day for one
less fortunate.

It wouldn't be possible
not to be kind
In the Land of Beginning Again,
And the ones we misjudged
and the ones whom we grudged
Their moments of
victory here,
Would find in the grasp
of our loving hand-clasp
More than penitent lips
could explain.

For what had been hardest
we'd know had been best,
And what had seemed loss
would be gain;
For there isn't a sting
that will not take wing
When we've faced it
and laughed it away
And I think that the laughter
is most what we're after
In the Land of Beginning Again.

So I wish that there were
some wonderful place
Called the
Land of Beginning Again,
Where all our mistakes
and all our heartaches,
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a
shabby old coat at the door
And never put on again.

--Louise Fletcher Tarkington

There is such a land. It is called Regeneration. We enter that land spiritually when we are born again, and all who are thus born again shall enter that land eternally when Jesus comes again. In the eternal Regeneration of Christ's Kingdom, earthly things shall "be dropped, like an old shabby coat at the door, and never put on again." --Duane V. Maxey

Wishing you many blessings in the New Year!!


I hope everyone has had a special time with family or friends this Christmas!
We have enjoyed a most beautiful White Christmas (the first in several years!).
There is still alot of snow on the ground.

Here are some of our pictures I'd like to share with you......
On Christmas Eve, our daughter Jami fixed an assortment of appetizers. In addition to some of the usual ones we have each year, she also served these delicious stuffed plum tomatoes, and Bacon-wrapped Stuffed Jalepenos. They were so good! I will be posting the recipes on my Recipe Blog shortly.

Table set for Christmas lunch.

Side table set for serving
Appetizers and
Hot Spiced Cider


We usually have brunch on Christmas day
instead of lunch,
but this year decided to have
Hungarian 'Christmas Soup'
served with Sourdough bread and
European butter, along with a
Fruit and Spinach Salad.

Bill made the soup,
which contains primarily
Kolbasi, Sauerkraut, & Mushrooms.
It was very good!
I think our relatives in Slovakia
would've been proud of him!

Paper whites starting to bloom
on Christmas Eve.

Amaryllis on Christmas Eve.

....then on Christmas morning.
The mantel lit up on Christmas Eve.

Our living room on Christmas morning,
after the gifts had been opened,
and the mountain of wrapping paper, bags
and boxes had been removed.

Chocolate Torte, anyone?
This is actually the cross tie wall
outside our back porch door.

Below is the door at the opposite end
of the back porch.
& the walkway leading to
garage apartment.

Jami had to put on my old snow boots
to walk around outside.
6"-8" of snow
with some ice underneath.

Here's her car in the driveway.

Front yard.

Closeup of snow-filled birdbath.

Front porch.

The pond.
(Neighbor's house in the distance).
I'm hoping the roads aren't too icy tomorrow,
but it has been a lovely Christmas weekend!!
Hope it was for you, too!


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friends and family
a wonderful Blessed Christmas!

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I just had to share these
rather humorous old Victorian postcards!

Is that a holly bouquet he's giving her? OUCH!

And PETA would be all over this gal
for all the little critters she's wearing as muff & scarf!
I'm sorry to have to report
that the economic slowdown
has even effected poor Santa Claus.
He had to let the team of reindeer go,
and has resorted to hitchhiking this year.


Santa's really fallen on hard times!

It looks like now he's even had to

pawn his red suit!

Some off these old postcards
from the early 1900's
may not have been intended to be funny,
but I get a chuckle out of them.
Hope you do, too!


Another one of my favorites.....
(Please mute Playlist first)


There are so many wonderful Christmas carols! This is one of my favorites!

O Come O Come Emmanuel!
The favorite O Come, O Come Emmanuel carol was originally written in Latin text in the 12th Century. Each of the seven verses featured an Old Testament prophesied name for the coming Messiah. The author of the words and composer to the music of O Come, O Come Emmanuel is unknown. It is , however believed that the melody was of French origin and added to the text a hundred years later. In 1851, five of the seven Latin verses were translated into English by John Mason Neale.

O Come O Come Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan's tyranny
From depths of Hell Thy people save
And give them victory o'er the grave
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Day-Spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death's dark shadows put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, O come, Thou Lord of might,
Who to Thy tribes, on Sinai's height,
In ancient times did'st give the Law,
In cloud, and majesty and awe.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
Who orderest all things mightily;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And teach us in her ways to go.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind;
Bid Thou our sad divisions cease,
And be Thyself our King of Peace.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

Between now & Christmas, I hope to feature other favorite carols.
If you have a favorite, just let me know, & I will include it!


(Please mute Playlist first)


December has arrived & I've been away, so haven't posted in awhile.

December 1st was my daughter Jami's birthday. Jami, I'm so happy we were able to get together to celebrate with a birthday dinner at Red Lobster, Weds. evening! Hope this will be an especially great year for you!

Bill & I have just returned from another trip to Florida to check on & spend some time with my mother, as she had taken quite a bad fall (the second fall in recent months!), & was hospitalized again.
She's a trouper, though, & even in such a declining condition, still has her smile and sweet spirit!

As we turn our thoughts to the celebration of our Savior's birth, here is an early Christmas wish for you.....

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A little boy was waiting for his mother to come out of the grocery store.

As he waited, he was approached by a man who asked,

"Son, can you tell me where the Post Office is?"

The little boy replied,

"Sure! Just go straight down this street a couple of blocks and turn to your right."

The man thanked the boy kindly and said,

"I'm the new pastor in town. I'd like for you to come to church on Sunday.
I'll show you how to get to Heaven."

The little boy replied with a chuckle.

"Awww, come on... You don't even know the way to the Post Office!"


We all have so much to be thankful for every day of the year, but it's especially nice to have this special day of reflecting on God's goodness, and offering our gratitude for the many blessings we enjoy!

I wish you all a happy Thanksgiving Day!


This is the last week for filling those shoeboxes & dropping them off
at the drop-off location nearest you!
It will give you such joy & blessing to be a part of this wonderful mission effort.
The gifts inside the box are so special to these children from all parts of the world, but learning of the love of Jesus far surpasses the simple gifts.
Be sure to remember to pray for the child who will receive the box (or boxes) you are filling!

National Collection Week is

November 15-22
Click here to learn how to pack a shoe box, to find your closest collection point, information about how to track your box through EZ Give, and more.


Bubba had shingles.

Here's what happened to Bubba:

Bubba walked into a doctor's office and the receptionist asked him what he had. Bubba said: 'Shingles.' So she wrote down his name, address, medical insurance number and told him to have a seat.

Fifteen minutes later a nurse's aide came out and asked Bubba what he had. Bubba said, 'Shingles.' So she wrote down his height, weight, a complete medical history and told Bubba to wait in the examining room.

A half hour later a nurse came in and asked Bubba what he had. Bubba said, 'Shingles..' So the nurse gave Bubba a blood test, a blood pressure test, an electrocardiogram, and told Bubba to take off all his clothes and wait for the doctor.

An hour later the doctor came in and found Bubba sitting patiently in the nude and asked Bubba what he had.

Bubba said, 'Shingles.'

The doctor asked, 'Where?'

Bubba said, 'Outside on the truck. Where do you want me to unload 'em??'



This is a long read, but SO worth it! Truly amazing, indeed!

If you ever doubted that God exists,

Meet the Very Technical,
Highly Engineered
Dromedary Camel.

When I'm hungry, I'll eat almost anything- A leather bridle, a piece of rope, my master's tent, Or a pair of shoes.

My mouth is so tough a thorny cactus doesn't bother it.
I love to chow down grass and other plants
That grow here on the Arabian desert.

I'm a dromedary camel, the one-hump kind
That lives on hot deserts in the Middle East.

My hump, all eighty pounds of it,
Is filled with fat-my body fuel-not water as some people believe.
My Mighty Maker gave it to me because
He knew I wouldn't always be able to find food
As I travel across the hot sands.
When I don't find any chow, my body automatically
Takes fat from the hump, feeds my system,
And keeps me going strong.
This is my emergency food supply.

If I can't find any plants to munch, my body uses up my hump.
When the hump gets smaller, it starts to tip to one side.
But when I get to a nice oasis and begin to eat again,
My hump soon builds back to normal.

I've been known to drink twenty-seven gallons of water in ten minutes.
My Master Designer made me in such a fantastic way that
In a matter of minutes all the water I've swallowed
Travels to the billions of microscopic cells that make up my flesh.
Naturally, the water I swallow first goes into my stomach.
There thirsty blood vessels absorb and carry it to every part of my body.
Scientists have tested my stomach and found it empty
Ten minutes after I've drunk twenty gallons.

In an eight hour day I can carry a four hundred pound load
A hundred miles across a hot, dry desert
And not stop once for a drink or something to eat.
In fact, I've been known to go eight days without a drink,
But then I look a wreck.
I lose 227 pounds, my ribs show through my skin,
And I look terribly skinny.
But I feel great!
I look thin because the billions of cells lose their water.
They're no longer fat. They're flat.
Normally my blood contains 94 percent water, just like yours. But when I can't find any water to drink, The heat of the sun gradually robs a little water out of my blood. Scientists have found that my blood can lose up to 40 percent of its water, and I'm still healthy.

Doctor's say human blood has to stay very close to 94 percent water. If you lose 5 percent of it, you can't see anymore; 10 percent, you can't Hear and you go insane; 12 percent, your blood is as thick as molasses And your heart can't pump the thick stuff. It stops, and you're dead.But that's not true with me. Why? Scientists say my blood is different. My red cells are elongated. Yours are round. Maybe that's what makes the difference.

This proves I'm designed for the desert,
Or the desert is designed for me.
Did you ever hear of a design without a Designer?

After I find a water hole,
I'll drink for about ten minutes
And my skinny body starts to change almost immediately.
In that short time my body fills out nicely, I don't look skinny anymore,
And I gain back the 227 pounds I lost.

Even though I lose a lot of water on the desert, My body conserves it too. Way in the beginning when my intelligent Engineer made me, He gave me a specially designed nose that saves water. When I exhale, I don't lose much. My nose traps that warm, moist air from my lungs And absorbs it in my nasal membranes.

Tiny blood vessels in those membranes take that back into my blood. How's that for a recycling system? Pretty cool, isn't it. It works because my nose is cool. My cool nose changes that warm moisture in the air From my lungs into water.

But how does my nose get cool? I breath in hot dry desert air, And it goes through my wet nasal passages. This produces a cooling effect, and my nose stays as much as 18 degrees cooler than the rest of my body.

I love to travel the beautiful sand dunes. It's really quite easy, because My Creator gave me specially engineered sand shoes for feet. My hooves are wide, and they get even wider when I step on them. Each foot has two long, bony toes with tough, leathery skin between my soles, are a little like webbed feet.
They won't let me sink into the soft, drifting sand. This is good, because often my master wants me to carry him one hundred miles across the desert in just one day. (I troop about ten miles per hour.)

Sometimes a big windstorm comes out of nowhere, bringing flying sand with it. My Master Designer put special muscles in my nostrils that close the openings, keeping sand out of my nose but still allowing me enough air to breathe.
My eyelashes arch down over my eyes like screens, keeping the sand and sun out but still letting me see clearly. If a grain of sand slips through and gets in my eye, the Creator took care of that too. He gave me an inner eyelid that automatically wipes the sand off my eyeball just like a windshield wiper.

Some people think I'm conceited because I always walk around with my head held high and my nose in the air.

But that's just because of the way I'm made. My eyebrows are so thick and bushy I have to hold my head high to peek out from underneath them. I'm glad I have them though. They shade my eyes from the bright sun.
Desert people depend on me for many things. Not only am I their best form of transportation, but I'm also their grocery store. Mrs. Camel gives very rich milk that people make into butter and cheese. I shed my thick fur coat once a year, and that can be woven into cloth. A few young camels are used for beef, but I don't like to talk about that.

For a long time we camels have been called the "ships of the desert" because of the way we sway from side to side when we trot. Some of our riders get seasick.

I sway from side to side because of the way my legs work. Both legs on one side move forward at the same time, elevating that side. My "left, right left, right" motion makes my rider feel like he is in a rocking chair going sideways.

When I was six months old, special knee pads started to grow on my front legs. The intelligent Creator knew I had to have them. They help me lower my 1000 pounds to the ground.

If I didn't have them, my knees would soon become sore and infected, and I could never lie down. I'd die of exhaustion.

By the way, I don't get thick knee pads because I fall on my knees. I fall on my knees because I already have these tough pads. Someone very great thought of me and knew I needed them. He designed them into my genes.

It's real difficult for me to understand how some people say I evolved into what I now am. I'm very technical, highly engineered dromedary camel. Things like me don't just happen.

They're planned on a drawing board by Someone very brilliant, Someone very logical. John 1:1 says, "In the beginning was the Word. And the Word was with God, and the Word was God." The Word means "logical, intelligent One."