Monday, June 22, 2015

The New Blog at Blue Willow

Our New Blog is under Construction at Wordpress.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Fish Friday

 In the first century, Jews fasted on Mondays and Thursdays.    The original Christians were all Jewish,  and were accustomed to fasting as a spiritual discipline. Most often that fast took the form of avoiding meat in the diet. In those days, meat was a luxury food.  Because most people had to buy meat in the market back then, it was expensive.  But anyone could grow vegetables or forage for them, and anyone could catch a fish in a lake or a stream. So the poor could still eat without much money.   Meat was known as a rich man's food, and fish was thought of as poor people's food. That is why the most common form of fasting was to omit meat with the exception of fish.
Although not done for religious reasons, our family nearly always eats fish on Friday.  In Arkansas, our fish came to us without monetary cost, we simply caught it in the Little Red River.  Our freezer always overflowed with the catch of the weekend.  Now that we are city-folk in PA, we must buy our fish at the market.  Not only do we not have time to fish, the fish in the local rivers are fraught with mercury and toxins. 
And so, this evening, we sat in our lawn chairs and watched Blaine and the neighborhood children catch fireflies, waiting for the fish to cook. 


Mike grilled Rosemary Haddock
and Fried Green Tomatoes, with "Boardwalk" Fries 

Historically, first century Christians did resume fasting
after Jesus’ Ascension,
 moving the fasts to Wednesday
(the day of the betrayal)
and Friday
(the day of the crucifixion).

Nothing in the Bible actually requires us to fast,
 Jesus did assume that believers were fasting. 
"When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do,
for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting... " 
Mt. 6:16

"Then John’s disciples came and asked him,
'How is it that we and the Pharisees fast often,
but your disciples do not fast?”

Jesus answered,
'How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them?
The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them;
 then they will fast."

-Matthew 9; 14-15

Fasting from Sundown on Tuesday to sundown
on Wednesday
is something the I do on occasion,
although I hope no one can tell I am fasting. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

A Good Read for Boys!

loved this book!


We just finished reading this splendid book as an oral reading project.  I highly recommend it if you would like to set your child's heart on fire for Jesus! 


I read that in 1894,  the publisher of this book rewarded the author, Florence Kingsley with $1,000 for writing the story.   Mark Hamby, President of Lamplighters stated, "In six weeks the demand for the book was so great, they printed 200,000 additional copies. 

The award-winning entry, Titus: A Comrade of the Cross, is provocative, full of suspense and drama. The story of Titus and his crippled brother climaxes at the foot of the cross, where the real hero is proclaimed. The most compelling moment is saved until the very end. It will take your breath away."

It can be found for purchase on, although we borrowed our copy from a friend.  This is our 3rd book selected from Lamplighter, and we have enjoyed each book immensely, with invaluable life lessons learned by all of us!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Because she thought she had to... and other false myths

Helen Frankenthaler, "the List"

"I don't believe Martha simply chose cooking or housework over the Lord.

When she begged the Lord to make Mary help her, what she was really saying

was,   "Notice me Lord!" she wanted Him to see her. Martha longed for acknowledgment

and love, and was willing to do anything to get it...  it isn't that she wanted to be 

working. It's that she thought she had to...."

-Nancy Lee DeMoss
from Revive Our Hearts

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Grandma Jeanne's "Semi" Home-Made Hot Cross Cinnamon Buns

1 loaf frozen bread dough, thawed
2 tablespoons melted butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup sifted confectioner's sugar
1 tablespoon milk
dash of vanilla

  • Roll dough into a rectangle, about 8x6 inches.
  • Brush with the melted butter.
  • Combine brown sugar, chopped nuts, and cinnamon.
  • Sprinkle over dough.
  • Starting at long edge, roll up, jelly roll fashion;
  • moisten edges and seal.
  • Cut roll into 20 slices.
  •   Place rolls, cut side down, into two 8 inch lightly buttered round cake pans. 
  • Let rise for about 1 1/2 hours. until doubled.
  • Pour the cream over the rolls and 
  • bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
  • Combine confectioners sugar, milk, and vanilla,
  •  adding more sugar or milk if necessary. (I double this part!)
  • Drizzle over rolls while slightly warm
  • Makes 20 yummy cinnamon buns

Thursday, April 2, 2015

We love a good sermon!

"God never sends His servants on a fool's errand. It pleases God by the foolishness of preaching to accomplish His divine purpose, not because of the power of preaching, nor the power of the preacher, nor any power in those preached to, but because 'all power' is given unto Christ 'in heaven and earth,' and He chooses to work by the teaching of the Word."
~C.H. Spurgeon~
Our Preacher making cards for the friends
at the Golden Living Nursing Home

Monday, March 23, 2015

Guest Post by Barbara Rainey of Family Life Today

 I have often prayed, “Help my unbelief,” over the decades of my faith.  Far too often I have believed my unworthiness greater than His perfect love delighting in me.  Is that true of you too?

Like a photographer with his eye behind the lens of his camera, so we have the power to choose where we focus our vision.  Every day we are aware of our failures, our flaws, our frailties, but in those moments of self-awareness we can change the attention of our heart from self’s shortcomings to Christ’s grace.  Zoom in on the truth that we are fully loved because of the cross, and allow the lies of unworthiness to recede.
What God desires is for us to be so captivated by His love that we live like a newly-engaged couple, overjoyed with the delight of being chosen, who think about each other almost every waking moment.  Yet the Father’s love toward us is far better, for the attention of Eternal Love never ceases.
May we live today more like the name He has given us, His bride!
The post Captivated by Eternal Love appeared first on Ever Thine Home.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Eyes for Beauty

It is better to have eyes for beauty – than for blemish.
It is better to be able to see the rose – than the thorns.

Alanje School, Honduras
It is better to have learned to look for things
 to commend in others – than condemn. 

Of course other people have faults –
and we are not blind.

But then we have faults of our own –
 and this should make us charitable.

~ JR Miller

Summer, 2014

These are our friends from the Alanje School in Honduras

A group of College Students are
going again this Summer to serve them,
and paint their school. 

Will You join us
in praying for them?


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Dry Leaves...

After a particularly challenging day yesterday, my son,

noticing my less than cheery demeanor, took me by the hand,

leading me to the TV.   He pointed out the little quote I

had pasted on the front 3 years ago.  This is what it said:

     "In every person who
comes near you look for what is
good and strong,
honor that, try to imitate it
and your
faults will drop off
like dry leaves
when their time comes."
- John Ruskin

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Good Medicine

"The most wasted day is that on which
we have not laughed."
Sebastian Chamfort

~ A cheerful heart is good medicine,
 but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. 

 Proverbs 17:22 ~

Thursday, January 15, 2015

An Audience of ONE

"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

      I am beginning a Bible Study for the High School Girls' Sunday School Class at our local church.  The theme is:  "Living A Life."  

 As I dig deeply into my soul with Bible in hand, I too often feel like a hypocrite.   This morning, while studying the lesson on being more concerned with what GOD thinks about oneself than what others think, I was pierced to the heart.  In reflecting inwardly, I see that I clearly care too much what other people think of me... my cooking, my housekeeping skills, my comments in Sunday School, and the list goes on.  I have measured myself against society's standards, and they seem impossible.   Consequently, I feel miserable about myself, and that shows in my tone of voice, my choices, and many other ways. 

     As I meditated on the meaning of all of this, I thought of my life in the past year...  no area was left unscrutinized:  Health, Beauty, Career, Physical Fitness, Possessions, Relationships...  all areas were found lacking when held up to the world's standards.  On the treadmill of perfectionism, I was left winded, and Joyless at the end of 2014.  How sad, because I KNOW there is MORE to life than this.

Thomas Kincade, Artist
     In 2015, I am going to live my life for an Audience of ONE.  In doing so for these first 15 days of January, something remarkable has happened in my life.  Suddenly, the things I desperately sought after do not matter at all anymore, and unexpected things that truly matter to me bring DELIGHT to my soul!   Joy has been dropped into my lap at just the right time!  My new "Agenda" has left me little time for worrying.  
Photo by Maranda Hawthorne
Friend and Fellow Nurse
     How about you?   May I challenge you to take a moment sometime today to stop and thank GOD for His presence in your life?  This simple act of remembering who my Audience is has led me to the most delightful adventures in the past two weeks.   I pray that I will keep this focus on the things that Matter Most for the whole year.  I want to be a "GOD-Pleaser" and not a "people-pleaser." 

"Our aim is to please HIM always in everything we do, whether we are here in this body, or away from this body and with HIM in Heaven." ---- II Corinthians 5:0 (TLB)