Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Small and wonderful things . . .

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 "The world is fairly studded and strewn with pennies cast broadside from a generous hand. But who gets excited by a mere penny?...It is dire poverty indeed when a man is so malnourished and fatigued that he won't stoop to pick up a penny. But if you cultivate a healthy poverty and simplicity, so that finding a penny will literally make your day, then, since the world is in fact planted with pennies, you have with your poverty bought a lifetime of days. It is that simple. what you see is what you get." ~Anne Dillard  

A few of the small and wonderful things which bring untold joy into my life.   It's the small things in life which truly mean the most.  Simple abundance . . . it's the best.  

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Family Home Evening.  Once a week members of our church dedicate a whole evening to spending the time together as a family and doing things which are spiritually uplifting.  It could be as simple as playing a game together.  Usually prayer, a hymn and spiritual thought are a part of the evening.  Monday evenings are the usual time for this.  When I worked down South I always worked on Monday evenings, and so we had to do it another night during the week.  It does not matter if you are a family of one, or of two, or of twenty two, it's a special thing to do.   I know lots of singletons who get together as a group to share.  Usually a snack of something tasty is involved as well.   You do not have to be a member of the church to do this.  It's an inspired plan from God and helps to foster family togetherness.   You can find out more about it here.   I Love Family Home Evening, even though we are only three, counting Mitzie.

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One thing you would probably notice coming in to our home is that it is filled with books.  We love books and are always reading something new.  One thing that drew us together was our mutual love of books and indeed when Todd and I first came in contact on the computer we both happened to be reading the exact same novel!  (It was a book about Guinevere, which also meant we both loved the King Arthur myth.)  I have a kindle, which helps me to read easier in bed.  My arthritis in my wrists makes it uncomfortable to hold a book in bed, but I will always love real books more.   The smell . . . the way the page feels beneath my fingertips . . . the print . . .  I don't use e-cookbooks, I like to have one I can touch and hold, and write notes about the recipes in the margins.  (I know sacrilege!)  I don't think we need ever fear that books will go out of style.  There is a place for both real books and electronic ones.

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This past weekend was the 184th  Bi-annual Conference of  the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.   Mormons all over the world gathered together as a collective either in their homes via the internet, live at the Conference Centre in Salt Lake City, or individual meeting houses all over the world to listen to our leaders speak to us.   It happens twice a year and each time  is composed of  four two hour sessions in which we have the opportunity to be spiritually fed, receive guidance,  have personal questions and ponderings of the heart answered in unique and individual ways, and be inspired from above.   Special music, enriching talks, the feeling of community and camaraderie and the sense of belonging to something large and beautiful, is pretty special.   You don't have to be a member of the church to get something worthwhile and uplifting from the talks that we listen to.  I believe there is inspiration there for all people who wish to listen.   You can listen to them all here, if you were so inclined.  

I understand that in Salt Lake City to get to the Centre for the talks, you first have to run the gauntlet of anti-mormons/athiests/born again's that station themselves all around Temple Square, shouldering placards and shouting and in some cases physically accosting those who are wanting to attend conference.   I don't get this?  However well meant their purpose, surely they would be better off speaking to people who don't already have a testimony of the Saviour and His atonement, rather than try to destroy the testimonies of people who do.  It doesn't make sense to me, and it's very rude.

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Blooming Lilacs.  It won't be long now.  There is a house across the street whose garden is filled with lilacs every Spring.  I love their scent and they are so very pretty.  I noticed yesterday our fruit trees are in bloom already . . . the pear and plum are covered in blossom, and the apple is just beginning.   The freesia is also in vibrant bloom as well.  Oh I do so love the Spring when everything is waking up again.   This is the season of hope and of promise!  

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The kiss of the sun for pardon
The song of the birds for mirth
One is nearer to God in a garden
Than any place else on earth.
~Dorothy Frances Gurney  

We have been watching the Call the Midwife series on DVD from it's first season here in our home.   We just love this show, and thought it would be special to watch it all over again from the beginning.  Last night we watched episode three from season one.   In it nurse Jenny befriends an elderly man that she is treating for the ulcers on his leg.   He dies, and near to the end of the show she is sitting on a bench in the cemetery in thought and I could see those words penned on the back of the bench she was sitting on and I just had to write them down and look them up.  They were so beautiful to me.  They are one verse of a whole poem entitled "God's Garden", which you can see here.  I just love this show.  Todd does too.   I can't get enough of it.  I know we will miss Nurse Jenny in the next series, but I am sure that there will be lots still to love in it.

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(Source Jana Christy)

Have you seen the CTMW art by Jana Christy.  You really must check it out.   It's brilliant and witty and spot on!  She's brilliant! (I think Chummy is her favourite CTMW character.)

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I have really been enjoying the latest pictures of the young royals on their New Zealand trip.  How beautiful Prince George is!  

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He and our Cameron are around the same age.   They will both be one in June/July ish.  I think little George favours his father in his looks.  What do you think?

I can hear Todd stirring upstairs.  Yesterday he complained that the days seem to be passing far too quickly.  I suggested to him it was because he stays in bed too long in the mornings and if he were to get up a bit earlier, they might seem that little bit longer.  I think he has taken my advice!

A thought to carry with you through today . . .

“You know those little moments when 
an unexpected act or a spoken word 
affects your heart with sweet, satiating intensity - 
a simple gesture that possesses deep, 
personal meaning beyond what anyone realizes? 
You know those tender moments? 
That's God 
pressing his lips on your forehead and whispering, 
'I love you'.”  
~Richelle E Goodrich  ✫¸¸.·´¯`✫ ✫¸¸.·´¯`✫  

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Cooking in The English Kitchen today . . . Mac and Cheese Dog Casserole!  Delicious!

Have a wonderful Tuesday.  The sun is shining brilliantly here!



  1. Good morning Marie. One thing I like about your church is the emphasis on the family and nurturing the family. Enjoy your day.

  2. Thanks Suzan! We are very family oriented, because I suppose, we believe that our families are a gift from God and an eternal creation. Love you! xxoo

  3. I love the concept of Family Home Evening. I think there are a lot of people who could benefit by that close connection. And how lovely to hear that even groups of singles make the effort to get together and bond on these evenings.

    I so agree about those protesting outside of Temple Square. What business is it of theirs? I am not a Mormon, but I think they have every right to worship in any way they choose - as does any religion. Who am I to decide what is "the right" way to pray?

    I remember being a bit brainwashed as a child by the priests and nuns in our church to think that we Catholics were the chosen ones who would go to heaven. And every Sunday on our way to Mass, we'd pass by various other churches and I so wanted to get out of the car and tell these people that they ought to join us - I was really upset to see children who were not going to be saved. As I matured I could see how wrong that was (and I hope the church has relaxed its stand on that) and I learned that every person has their own faith and that there is no right or wrong way to talk to God. It's a pity some people never grow up.

    I'm looking forward to lilac season as well. Ours will be in late May or early June. It's cold, wet and foggy here this week, but I hope that these April showers will bring on lots and lots of May flowers.

    Todd sounds a bit like my husband, who complains about short days, but who doesn't get up until the crack of noon :-) I'm a morning person and have always been like that, so I like to get up very early and get going. Fortunately Miss Sophie is the same, so we always have a couple of hours out walking together before we come home and rustle L-G out of bed. A damp, excited dog is a great alarm clock!

  4. Lovely idea, the Family Home Evening. TJ & I are a little family, with our kitty Charlie in tow, and so I think we have Family Home Evening most eventings. :o) Nice thought, that... We love our books too. Though we have reduced a lot in recent years. And we have been going over more and more to books in digital format. Been a long time since we bought a print book, I think! Fun to watch Call the Midwife again from the beginning... Might have to do that! We recently read that there will be a new series--HOORAY! Chummy is one of my fave characters. Oh, so sweet is Bonnie Prince Georgie! He looks a lot like is papa did at that age. Cute! Hope you & yours have a LOVELY week there, Marie! LOVE YOU LOTS ((BIG HUGS))

  5. I know Marie, it's such a personal thing. I believe there are many avenues of truth and who am I to say to another mine is the only way! I don't think it matters how we get there, just so long as we are headed in the right direction. jyho. It's a nice and sunny day here today, but very cold! brrr... trying hard not to put the heat on!

    Tracy, I do have lots of e-books too. I just can't bring myself to get rid of any of the real books though. Does that make me a hoarder? Hmm... I don't know! xxoo

  6. When my children were young and all at home we always had a family night. It was very good to dedicate one evening a week just to do things together. Of course there were many other times that we were together too but family night was a special one. Hope you have a terrific Tuesday!

  7. Family nights with the children are the best Pam! We always had special nights together and I hope that we built some lovely memories for each other. I hope you have a terrific Tuesday too! xxoo

  8. What? Jenny leaves?:(
    I remember that epi as if it was yesterday!

  9. Oh dear, I am sorry Monique. I thought it had already been viewed in North America. Yes, Jenny will not be back next season. The actress who played her has unfortunately moved to LA to pursue her acting career there. Kind of like Matthew in Downton Abbey moving to New York to pursue his. :-(

  10. I follow a ministry that used to do mission work at the General Conference, handing out tracks and engaging Mormons in conversation. They had to stop because the fundamentalists arrived and accosted not only the Mormons with horrendous chants and insults, but the ministry that I follow also. Some very vocal idiots have caused all those who wish to reach others to get a bad name. This is true in many venues today. They will answer for it eventually.

  11. Laura, I think it is so wrong. We had the same thing here in the UK last year when the British Pageant. As we arrived to watch the pageant they were shouting at our vehicles, etc. It was entirely uncalled for and really shows them up in a bad light I believe. There are kinder ways of expressing your views and opinions I think! You are right! xxoo

  12. We have been accosted by the "anti" group when we have attended events on temple square. It is very sad to me. I don't understand it either.
    I hope you are doing well. I just can't seem to get a spring in my step. I hope I will soon.
    Have a good day. Hugs, Lura

  13. Lura, I hope that you find the spring in your step soon! ((((hugs))))


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