Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Happy Wednesday friends and blog readers. This is the last day of August and it might just bring us a few showers today. The sky is a bit over cast this morning and the temp is already 80 degrees. The air is still outside and other than a couple of finches and hummingbirds, the back yard is empty at the buffet this morning. It will pick up, I'm sure. I'm about thirty minutes early for the cardinals to come flying in.

We are back to routine around here which of course means that since it is Wednesday, we'll go to the church and run the bulletins for Sunday's services. Our summer schedule of combined worship services has ended and we go back to two services again and a Sunday school. It has been nice have full churches though over the summer. I don't know if they will do that next year or not. I guess that will depend on the wishes of the churches and their new pastor. But, the congregations seemed to really enjoy it. But ---- it won't be my worry. Tonight we also begin choir practice for a new season. Ms. Kate and I will go for a few more weeks. The choir only sings once a month, so at the most, she and I will only be singing with them three more times. That is just another one of those things that we are slowly getting to the "last time we'll do this". We'll miss it. On a good day we only have twelve members of the choir. Now with Ms. Kate and I leaving, and another couple of the members being sick, they are going to get small quick. But --- you know what? If they will just do it --- they can provide good worship music and praise to the Lord regardless of how many people they have. The biggest problem is convincing people of their capabilities and getting them to look beyond their limitations.

Ms. Kate made some fresh peach freezer jam last night. I need to get that put in the freezer this morning assuming I can make room. For it. We went to the orchard yesterday and picked up a peck of peaches and a bag of apples. However, if we are going to make more jelly, and stuff, we need to go to the store and get more sugar today. I wouldn't be upset if a peach pie or two appeared on the kitchen table either.

Ms. Lauren, our motocross rider made it to Michigan with her dad and she is enjoying a week of doing some sight-seeing in the area of the racetrack. She is still healing so she needs to get some rest. And she has her stationary bicycle with her to exercise on for a while each day. I talked to her dad last night and she says she is ready foro the race this coming weekend. Then they will head back to California.

My cup is empty and as I predicted --- the cardinals have arrived, bringing along some of their other friends with them. Time to just sit for a bit and enjoy what God has made. I hope you have a great day. Don't get so busy that you forget to stop and give thanks to God who has made all of the blessings in your life possible. We should never get so wrapped up in ourselves that gratitude to God is a forgotten element in our lives. Peace.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Hello Tuesday! It's nice to see you this morning. The sun is bright, no rain in the forecast and it is 79 degrees already this morning. It will be a hot one today and the humidity will be on the rise for today too. But better stuff is coming down the pipeline for the four day Labor Day weekend. Assuming I get my work done, Ms. Kate and I just might run over to Louisville to PF Chang's restaurant for lunch on Friday. Then we can drop by Julie's house and see her new puppy. Out of respect for our house and us, she's not bringing it to our house until it is house-broken, and I appreciate that. But --- that don't mean we can't go there and pet its floppy head.

 Julie has just finished "rush" season once again at the college bookstore that she manages. But now --- her favorite season of the year; Halloween is upon us and she works her proverbial off haunting at the Baxter Avenue Morgue Haunted House. She has been doing this for several years and looks so forward to it. Certainly she is the "Grand Dame" of the cast and is a looked up to mentor to all of the young kids that come to be in the haunting cast. The fact that the place is an actual old morgue with a dark history, and the fact that it is actually haunted only adds to the flavor and fun. Julie has been pushed several times by things that were not there or seen. That all starts on the 2nd of September and runs through the end of October.  She goes home from a haunt both exhausted and exillerated.

It has been a busy morning at the buffet this morning. I've had lots of birds and a couple of pesky squirrels. Then a hawk came in and just sat up in the poplar tree for awhile. It let everything settle back down and a few birds came back in. One sparrow made the mistake of landing on the ground below one of the feeders and it became hawk breakfast just that quick. That hawk swooped down and never slow down as it grabbed that sparrow off of the ground and flew off. The circle of life continues; some times you eat breakfast and some times you are breakfast. I didn't fill up any feeders yesterday with the exception of the hummer feeders. There is plenty of food out there for them. This morning though, I did go out and water the planters and clean out the birdbath and re-fill them with clean water. I was surprised at how dry the planters had become. The plants were looking pretty wilted. It is interesting though how quickly those plants will look fresh again no matter how bad they looked. All it usually take is a little water. It's pretty much the same as what prayer does for me. No matter how I might feel, a little prayer will perk me right back up.

I have work to do and coffee to finish so I better get on it. I offer up prayers for those who "sit in the sunroom" with me and read my scribbles. May God send blessings your way each and every day.

Monday, August 29, 2016

I have lived most of the past fifty years with my measuring of time by event or "suspenses" for things to get done. For the past several months one of the big events that loomed on the calendar and we all looked forward to was Lauren and Heather coming to Indiana so Lauren could race. Well, that time came slowly and then got here and passed entirely too quickly. She did the race yesterday; -- we had a great representation from Ms. Kate's side of the family and we all drove the 175 miles up to Crawfordsville and watched her race. She did well. If she finishes in the top ten, we figure it to be a good ride and she did. The top four finishers in the WMX races are always the top four finishers in the races so we felt good about her performance.  Now, she and her dad are on the way to Michigan for their next race next weekend and the rest of us are back home and back to our daily routines. After she finishes Michigan, I think she may bow out of the last three races as they are all on the east coast, and Lauren lives in California.

I'm seeing a lot of empty feeders out there this morning including the hummingbird feeders being almost empty again. We'll have to do something about that after while. Last night after we got home, I was sitting here in the sunporch relaxing and playing Bingo on my IPad when I saw something moving outside just the ther side of the door. I went over and checked and it was a cut little black with white stripes critter and no it wasn't Sylvester the cat. It was a small skunk and it was cleaning up residue under the bird feeders that other critters had dropped. Needless to say, I did not bother it. It wasn't bothering me and I wasn't about to bother it. I can just imagine opening the door, scaring it, and filling the house with skunk oder. No, thank you very much.  -----  I took a break and went out and filled the Hummingird feeders. Ms. Kate mixed up two batches, one for each feeder. The ant guards were dry and of course the red ants had clogged up the ports of one of the feeders. So, I cleaned it all up and put water in the guards. The little buzz wings should be happy once again. Old Fuss-a-lot the bluejay has been here most of the morning. He fusses, he eats, and he fusses some more. It is missing a lot of its feathers around its neck. I don't know if it has something wrong with it or what, but it looks like a small buzzard in stead of a bluejay when it stretches it neck out to reach some food.

I'm still on vacation for the next couple of days but I got some stuff that needs doing for the churches so we'll do little, take a nap -- repeat! LOL  With that, I will finish up my coffee and get ready for the day to begin. I give God thanks for this goriest weekend and the fact that our kiddos drove the 2100 miles or so with no accidents or incidents. I will pray for that to continue as they do this next race and then head back to CA.

May God grant you a day with nothing but good things and the strength to handle the things that may not be as good. Peace.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Friday has gotten here and Heather and Lauren are slowly getting their stuff together to reload the van. They didn't spread out very much so it won't take them too long. It's more about showers and hair dryers and make-up than it is packing. Although Lauren has a "certain way" that stuff needs to go in the van. The van is huge. It is a Dodge Pro-Master 1500 and they fill it with all of their gear, two motorcycles, and a mountain bike for her to use as a fitness trainer.


And now it is Saturday. We got busy around here and I had to leave the blog and get other things done and just never got back to you. Sorry.

The kids did get packed and on the road. They only had an hour and a half to travel yesterday because they were only going as far as Julie's house. But they made it safely and by all accounts and pictures I've seen this morning, they've had a good visit.  Julie has the two dogs and I guess Lauren hasn't left them alone for a moment. She was so looking forward to playing and snuggling with their new puppy.

It is a cloudy morning and we had a pretty good little thunderstorm about 0200 hrs. It is supposed to be scattered rain etc through the weekend. We are heading to Crawfordsville, IN later today. We will meet Heather and Lauren up there this afternoon. Lauren has a big race up there tomorrow which was the purpose of this trip. There are about a dozen members of the family that are  going to the race. Unfortunately, Crawfordsville is in the path north of us to get the rain and storms after they have passed through here. We are all hoping it won't be too wet during the race. I don't think they would cancel the race, but it would sure be miserable for both riders and spectators.

I see the birds have emptied several feeders up here by the sunporch again. They will just have to deal with what is there until I get back home tomorrow evening . This morning I have other things to get done such as packing a quick over night bag and putting some stuff in the car for the trip. We did fill the hummingbird feeders again yesterday so they are good to go. And --- all of the other feeders around in the yard are fairly full.

I hope you have a most blessed weekend and if it isn't a sunny day outside --- get in touch with God, it will brighten your day regardless. Peace.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Thursday afternoon, 91 degrees and sunny. The humidity will suck the life out of you if you are out side for very long. I spent some time out there this morning. I got the trimming done and the yards all mowed. It looks a lot better around here again. 

The bad thing about this being Thursday is that Heather and Lauren are going to be leaving tomorrow and heading over to Julie and Jim's house. Then we'll meet up with them on Saturday up in Crawfordsville where she is going to run her races on Sunday. Lauren's dad will fly in on Saturday evening and them after the races Lauren and her dad will be heading off to Michigan where she will race next weekend and Heather will fly back home on Sunday. It is a short but much loved visit. This evening we are meeting for supper at the Log Inn with Ms. Kathy's side of the family. They all plan to go to the races on Sunday too. We had Lauren Woods team shirts made so we should be a good looking fan club on Sunday at the races. I'm really hoping the weather holds out and we don't have storms on Sunday. That would be miserable for all concerned. This will be the first time that the family has had a chance to see her race in person and everybody is excited about it. 

We've had a wonderful visit with these two though. Just a lot of gabbing and eating and more gabbing. Yesterday we did a little running around and picked up a trainer stand for Lauren to attach to her mountain bike for exercising. It took her and me awhile to get it assembled and placed on her bike. It wasn't hard --- we just didn't know what we were doing. LOL And --- we even read the directions several times. 

I've had to fill bird feeders two days in a row. I can't believe how quickly the hummingbirds empty these feeders. But the fact that we are getting more hummingbirds far outweighs the cost of a little sugar water.  I'm sending one of the hummerbar feeders back to CA with Heather. They have a lot of hummingbirds all the time. When we were out there for the wedding, I'd sit out in their outdoor area and the hummingbirds would come up and buzz right infront of your face and then fly off. When we lived out there back in the early 90's, they woud do the same thing when we would be sitting out on our porch. It used to really tickle my grandson Josh, who was just a kid then. 

Well, if I hurry, I can get in a quick power nap before I have to take people to dinner. I hope your evening is a good one. Peace.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

I'm a happy camper this morning! Heather and Lauren, (daughter and granddaughter) arrived last night from California. They made the trip in three days which yes, can be done; but it wears your tail out! Lauren did all of the driving which puts her in superstar range. They got in last night about 2130 hrs. Bless Lauren's heart, the first thing she wanted was ice for her shoulder since she is still recovering from her injury. But it is so wonderful to have them here.

Our beautiful "fall-like" days for the past three days have become memory and the heat and humidity have become to climb back to August standards. The heat index is going back up to three digit range.

I'm officially on vacation although I have to finish up some last minute details from my Monday funeral. The widow had given me a small piece of paper with some scripture verses on it that were favorites of her husband. What I didn't know was that he had written those verses on that piece of paper himself at some point and so that little piece of paper was important to her. Her daughter called me yesterday and wondered if I still had it. I did, although I had t pull it back out of my waste basket. So, I'll run that over to her this morning some time. It is interesting what little things will become of utmost importance when we lose someone.

I think I may mow today and I also need to get my little electric chain saw out and cut up a couple of limbs that have fallen. I'll maybe ask Lauren to help me with it. That would be cool. Right now we are just sitting around gabbing and chilling. Lauren is still sound asleep and I'm glad she is getting a good night's sleep. After driving 2100 miles in thee days; --- she's beat.

So, my comments are short for the next few days. I have some great company to talk to for the next couple of days and don't want to miss a minute of it.

Have a blessed day my friends and Go with God!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

I'm sorry I missed you yesterday. It was one of those busy days and I just didn't get around to writing. But I got some good stuff done anyway.

My morning started off with doing a funeral. A lifetime friend from my home church passed away on Friday night and the family called me and asked if I would do his funeral. Of course I said "yes". I have known the man for 67 years and he was a positive influence in my life. How could I not give up some time and do his funeral? So, much of my weekend was dedicated to preparing for that including a Sunday afternoon visitation at the funeral home. There was a large turnout for the funeral and it was also good to see folks from my home church again. I don't know if we will return to that church when I retire at the end of November or not. The church has changed a lot since I left it They had a pastor a couple of years ago that really was an ill fit for the church and the result was a bunch of in-fighting and many of the people my age left the church. They have had an interim at the church for the past two years but I understand her term is up in January and I don't know what their plans are.

I filled twenty feeders yesterday. I had to clean some of them up because residue had built up in them and the seeds weren't able to come out. Ms. Kate and I also cleaned up the birdbaths so they are full of fresh clean water. There have been a lot of visitors to them this morning. We also had to refill the hummingbird feeders because they were empty. We have a steady three and possibly a fourth one now. The amount of buzzing around that goes on here is so much fun to watch.

Speaking of watching it ---- it is easier to do today. I cleaned five of the sunporch windows on the outside that had really gotten bad from dirt and rain splashing on them and the occasional bird poop getting on the. This morning the picture is clearer than it has been all summer.

Sunday we had a wonderful crowd at church --- over eighty people. I know that because we made eighty bulletins and we ran out. That is a great problem to have.  We had an infant baptism and that usually brings in a few more folks. I love doing infant baptisms, I said that before. The baby was good through it and only fussed a little bit, and then settled down in my arms as I walked the aisle with it to introduce it to it's new faith family.

Ms. Kate and I have several things to get done today. Heather and Lauren are still on the road and heading this way. They spent last night on Goodland KS. They should spend one more night on the road and come in tomorrow. However, they might in fact drive straight through and get her tonight. That would put them about sixteen hours of driving today including getting through Kansas City and St. Louis. I really hope they will stop tonight. But, --- I also know the stubborn will of the two of them. So --- send prayers up for their safe travels please.

The work won't get done with me sitting here so I better get out of the recliner and get to it. I hope your day is fully blessed. God gave me another day on earth today so my day has already been blessed. Take a few minutes today and stop and count your blessings and give thanks for them. Peace.

Friday, August 19, 2016

I guess two days of sunshine was a bit much to ask for but it would have been nice. We'll just have to see what the rest of he day brings. So far though, it has been a cloudy and gloomy morning. The weather Channel app says afternoon thunderstorms for today and thunderstorms for tomorow.

We got a lot of our duties accomplished yesterday. We went back up to the church and ran more bulletins. We also went to Wildbirds ^ Things and I loaded up on stuff for the critters. We did the laundry and I got the yards mowed. So, today will be a play day. Ms. Kate and I have a day-date for lunch and a movie at the local Royal Suites theater. We are going to see the remake of Ben Hur. I think this is the third time Hollywood has made this movie. The Royal Suites Theater has recliners for seats and you can order your lunch or dinner right there from your recliner and they bring it to you so you can watch your movie and have your lunch at the same time. These theaters are springing up all across the country. We went to our first one in Portsmouth, VA back in 2001. The rest of our day-date may include a trip to Cold Stone Creamery, a pedicure, and maybe even a trip to the orchard to get some peaches if theere are still peaches to be had. For all I know, it might be Apple season already.

My birds have once again emptied the sunflower seed feeders up by the house as well as the the feeders with the bark butter bits in them and another suet feeder or two. But, it stands to reason because that is where they come the most often and where we can watch them the best. Today has been busy at the buffet though. Lots of Finches, woodpeckers, a couple of wrens and Mr. Fuss-a-lot who came announcing itself proudly, got a few bites of suet, and left. He was much to do about nothing.

I can tell the season is starting to turn. The leaves are already falling off of the Pussy Willow tree at a significant rate. The blossoms on the phlox is getting to be less and less. As we drove up to the church yesterday we noticed that the corn fields are starting to change color too as they go from lush green to brown as the stalks begin to dry up a little. The weatherman said that as soon as we get this front of rain that is at our doorstep, we'll be getting cooler weather. Before we know it, fall will be on top of us. Speaking of weather --- the sun just popped out for the first time today. I feel better already.

It is Friday and the end of the work week, depending upon your job. I hope you have a couple of days  rest and relaxation and I hope that includes time to give thanks to the Lord for your blessings. All oof the blessings we have in our life are a gift from God. Take time to be grateful. Peace.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

I can hardly believe it --- it is not raining and has not rained all morning. It is just after noon and I'm just getting around to the blog. I can't tell you what has taken up my morning, but here it is after 1200 hours. Well, yes, I did spend sometime on Facebook this morning and Facebook messenger talking to my girls. (Thank you Mark Zuckerman for your insight that caused you to create this social media.)

Ms. Kate and I also are getting the laundry done today and that takes a little time; plus she made a breakfast of French toast. That is always a hit with me. I'm a breakfast person and could eat a breakfast meal of some kind three times a day. Cereal is my "go to" around midnight every night.

We are going to the church again today and run the bulletins for the 28th. I didn't have time to run everything yesterday and do visitation too. But, before we go, I wanted to sit and write my blog and we are waiting on the last load of clothes to dry in the dryer. Being that it is just the two of us, we only have two loads a week so it isn't a big job.

I filled seventeen feeders again last evening. Two of the sunflower seed feeders up here by the door are already half empty. I need to go to the bank today and get some money so I can go to the darned Wildbirds and Things and buy more stuff for the birds. I need to find a way to claim these guys as deductions. Although, I guess in reality I'm not their sole source of care, so I'll just keep buying food.

Ms. Kate is sitting here reading the latest Harry Potter book; "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child". It is written like a screen play, which is what it is as opposed to a movie. So, she says it is a little hard to follow. I had one of my Stephen King books like that and they are hard to follow.

Julie and Jim got a new puppy from the pound. I'm not sure that Jim is quite done naming it yet but for now it's name is Fenway, as in Fenway Park. It is a female and so of course the name doesn't jive at all. But ---- the last female they had  they named Harley. So there is no counting for it.

OK,, I need to get moving or I am going to fall asleep here in my recliner. The sun is shining, the birds are singing and it is totally quiet here in the house. That is a recipe for a nap for sure. I pray you will have a most glorious day filled with the blessing of God Almighty. Peace.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

I'm not sure but I think this is day six of rain and the second month in a row of more days of rain than sunshine. This has certainly been a wet summer. I know it isn't as bad here as it is in other parts of the country and we haven't had the flooding that some parts of the country have had, so I can't complain. But I do hope that it backs off for awhile. We were in Cracker Barrel Restaurent yesterday having lunch and there were a lot of senior citizens coming in and out. I told Ms. Kate that it looked like everyone of them was "wearing the weather". They all looked so grumpy and cranky, and from what conversations I could overhear, they were cranky and grumpy.

My feeders need filling again. With the rain I haven't been going out as often to fill them so my backyard guests are cleaning the feeders out. We were supposed to go to the Wildbirds and Things yesterday and restock the supply but just didn't make it there. I'm not totally sure what I'm short on except for bark butter bits and paste. I only have a couple of suet feeder cakes left, and the safflower seed is gone. They sure do go through stuff quickly. Right now I must have 30 or so birds out there eating. I particularly enjoy watching the "hummingbird dance" as I call it. It looks like I'm missing a feeder again this morning. They probably knocked it down. The squirrels, possums, and raccoons do come through and try to eat off of things they can't but they knock them down in their efforts.

I've been enjoying my cousin's photos on Facebook. Where I have birds, She has deer and heron to watch every day. She has a couple of does and young fawns and even a couple of bucks that play in her yard and around her lake everyday. Of course they are also eating in the soybean fields next to the farm and I suspect they are also eating from the corn field which isn't great for profit. But they are cute to look at.

It is Wednesday and that means going to the churches today. I think I may run both this week's bulletins and also next week's too with the newsletter. Next week Heather and Lauren will be coming in and I'll have enough other things to be doing to get ready for their visit. If I work ahead that will take a little of the pressure off. This Sunday we have an infant baptism to do. I love doing those. It might just be a favorite part of being a pastor; the dedication of children to God is just so very special to me.

I guess I need to finish my coffee and get my day going. The rain has stopped and the radar shows it now to the south of us and moving out of the area. I would say "gotta' make hay while the sun shines" but the grass would be too wet to cut and the sun isn't shining. So, I'll just get busy. Have a glorious day.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Another rainy morning, --- what else is new? At least the rain is light and as much of a mist as it is an actual rain. It's one of those rains that just keeps the windshield a mess when you are driving behind a semi-trailer.

We are out and about this morning, starting at the Orthopedic doctor for Ms. Kate to get another cortisone shot in her hand. From there we need to go to Sam's, Hobby Lobby, Wildbirds and Things, Fresh market and CVS to pick up my prescription. Hopefully at some point along the way the rain will stop. And --- hopefully along the way I'll find a plate of biscuits and gravy. Can't let a man starve and expect him to hold down parking spots ya' know.

I spent some time last night working on a my continuity folder for whoever will be my replacement when I retire. I've put a lot of information on a flash drive so they can just plug it in and will have all of the template for the bulletins and different things that I do. Of course, perhaps they will want to do something totally different. I don't have a problem with that. I just feel that I should do whatever I can to help out. Neither church has a secretary nor any technology so I'm not sure what they are going to do. I know they won't have a permanent pastor chosen yet and may not even have an interim pastor chosen. So if they end up with a different pastor every week, ------ well who knows? I asked them last Sunday if the Search Committee had met and they said it had; although they also said it was an hour and a half that wasn't very productive. That is totally to be expected. The first thing I think they need to do is to develope a profile for the parish. That way prospective pastor can see what the church expects from a pastor. It is a long and complicated process and I almost feel guilty leaving them to have to go through this. However -- they would have to go through it at some point.

Ms. Kate and I have a bunch of work to do because we need to get the house ready for company next week. Heather and Lauren are driving across country for Lauren to race at a track north of us on the 28th. They are going to be spending two nights at our place first and will be here on the 24th. We are excited about the whole thing. We are planning a gathering of the family, (cousins etc.) at a local restaurant on the 25th and then all of the cousins and us, and Karen will be going up for the races. It is going to be exciting because none of the family besides Ms. Kate and I have seen her race. She is dynamic on the motorcycle. She will leave Indiana and go to Michigan for another race a week later. That will close out her season for the year.

It is really raining much harder now but, that is fine; I'm not out in it. I hope your day has more sunshine than mine does. But, even though it is racing --- I've got sunshine in my soul. Have a most wonderful day. Peace.

Monday, August 15, 2016

A blessed new week to you my friends. I trust your weekend went well for you. Our weekend was typical around here. It has been a rainy one off and on and is supposed to continue in like fashion through Wednesday. Evansville has had some cloudbursts that dropped a bunch of rain for maybe thirty minutes and the clears up. It was still sprinkling when I got out of bed at 0645 but that didn't last long and now we even have periods of a little sun shining through. Southern Illinois is getting hit hard though. What is also amazing is that much of the country is getting none of this rain and they really need it. I was talking to one of my farmers at church yesterday who had spent part of the week up in Ohio at a tractor show. He said that the area he was in was in a drought and that their corn won't make 50 bushel an acre. And then there is the state of Lousiana that under a state of emergency because of historic flooding. In parts of that state they have 80% of the roads closed and are under two feet of water with more rain to come. I pray for all of those people who have lost so very much.

We've had more racial violence in the heartland of America. I just don't understand it. A young black man with a very long criminal record confronts police in a stolen car with a stolen automatic weapon loaded with 23 rounds of ammunition and ends up getting killed. The result: hundreds of other young black people riot, burn their local businesses, burn vehicles, assault white people randomly. The parents of the young man claim he was a "good kid"; in fact he was even planning to go to community college." Well --- a picture of him in his cap and gown would have been a sharp contrast to all of the pictures on Facebook of him half naked with his hanging down pants and pointing his weapons at the camera. These young blacks whine because they say we white peoples don't understand the black culture. I agree that I have no idea what a it is like to grow up black in America but if I may continue on my soap box for a moment: --- what they have is not black culture. Granted, inner cities get the short end of the stick in schooling and education and therefore their job opportunities are often less. But far too many black people are totally successful, upstanding contributing citizens of this country to claim that rioting and all that other crap is "the black culture." It is time that they quit calling themselves African Americans and started just being Americans. Odds are pretty good that all of those that were out there burning and looting coudn't even show you Africa on a map. As I see it, the black society of America fails to demand better of their own people. And when there is no expectation of better behavior --- there will not be better behavior. I have worked for, with, and supervised people of every race, color, and religion in my life. I know that when standards are set, followed, made clear, and enforced ---- anarchy can not prevail.

Enough of my soap box for today; thanks for reading and putting up with me. I love you all. Peace.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

I've been listening to the ding, ding, ding of smartphone conversations between my girls since about 0630. We have a long running conversation going that goes back a couple of years on Facebook Messenger. We created a "message group" and call it The Committee. We just never shut it down and when someone happens to be on they will type in a message and see who is on and wants to chat. I love that capability. It is like my girls are always just in the next room and I can talk to them anytime I want. I've been talking to them for about an hour and now Ms. Kate and Lisa are talking. The rest of the committee just comes in and out as they want to.

There is no sunshine in the sky this morning. We're actually just waiting on the rain to start. We are supposed to be in for a lot of it. I've heard some thunder in the distance but we are dry so far. It could miss us completely and I'd just be a happy camper. I'm tired of rain.

I filled fifteen feeders yesterday. Two of the ones up here by the house are already half empty. All of the feeders are busy this morning. The birds obviously have instincts about the weather that is coming in and they are filling up now. I guess it's kind of like humans when they hear a storm or a snow storm is coming ---- they run and stock up on bread and milk whether they ever eat bread and milk any other time or not.

Ms. Margaret's lawn crew is out there this morning. They won't take long. There is a young girl (13 or so) that is doing the back yard and she is moving quick. I don't know if her mower is self propelled or not but she is quick. I'll bet they are done in less than twenty minutes. Her biggest obstacle over there is Ms. Margaret's flowering crabapple tree. It is out of control and hangs low so they really have to duck down to get under it. It is beautiful when it blooms but the rest of the time it is just a mess. It needs some serious love and attention.

The hummingbirds are really working their feeders over this morning. Last night I took one of those hummerbar a to my sister-in-law Karen. She has several hummingbirds and can put it to good use. We cleaned our hummerbar out yesterday and put in fresh food. I put any guard cups at each end to keep the ants out of the feeders

I need to get outside and clean the leaves out of one gutter befor the rain starts so I'm going to leave you alone til Monday. I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Peace.

Friday, August 12, 2016

I wonder if the hummingbirds eat 24/7. We have them late in the evening and we have them early in the morning and all day long. I guess they expend so much energy with their constant flying that have to eat all the time. What I do know is that they are a joy to watch. Our two, maybe three, just continually seem to be here.

Happy Friday! I hope you have had a good week. Our week has been pretty good around here except for the rain. Unfortunately the next two or three days are supposed to be gully washers as the gulf moisture moves up through not only our area but on up into Canada. July was a constant rainy month and now August is following suit. I had a text from my grandson Joshua up in New Hampshire who said they are in drought conditions and he hasn't had to mow his yard in almost a month. I'm mowing twice a week.

I'd like to solicit you prayers for a beautiful young lady I know who checked into detox at a drug rehabilitation center late last night. She will be in detox for maybe a week and then is supposed to move on to a couple of months of rehab. Her story is only one of hundreds of thousands just like her across this country. I pray that she will make the most of this opportunity and will be able to return to her family, clean and drug free. From everything I'm hearing, the young lady wants to become drug free which is a great start. We all have our addictions of some kind or another. For some it is drugs, or alcohol. For some it is a toxic relationship. It might be gambling or it might be work and the desire to have more and more money and stuff. Mine was cigarettes for well over thirty years at two plus packs a day. I know that technically I am still addicted to smoking, --- I've just chosen not to smoke for the past twenty five years. But I know it would only take one cigarette and I'd be spending that $7.50 a pack without thinking twice.  Wouldn't that be great for my asthma?? Any way, I ask for your prayers for this young lady and all like her who are trying to free themselves of a terrible demon.

We have running around to do today and I have a bunch of bird feeders to fill. I also need a haircut and need to pick up more supplies from the pet food places. Knowing I have that stuff to do tells me that I better vacate the recliner and get busy. It's Friday so I better take advantage of having a day off before I get retired and no longer have "days off". I pray your weekend will be filled with the peace and love of Jesus Christ. I also pray you will take time to take stock of your blessings and maybe even pass some of them along to someone who could use an extra blessing today. Peace.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

There is a prehistoric creature crawling across my patio. ---- Granted it is only about five inches long but it is a lizard which is a descendent of the dinosaurs. If this one was fifteen to eighteen feet longer and weighed about 400 pounds, it would be a komono dragon. Instead we'll just call it Sammy the Skink! Maybe it will gobble up some mosquitos out there in the yard.

It is Thursday afternoon and my day has been busy. Ms. Kate and her sister are off on a "sisters day" and I'm just doing stuff that needs to be done. I got to the churches and have everything set up for Sunday service. Then I stopped by our favorite restaurant for lunch. After that I came home and mowed .

The rain has held off so far today and we have had a day of sunshine and extra high humidity. It didn't take long out there in the yard to be sweating. So now, I'm cooling off here in the sunporch, watching the birds as the continue to deplete the remaining food that is is the feeders and I'm seeing that I need to fill everything again. There just isn't any rest is there? It's hard to believe that Ms. Kate is gone for the day and I didn't get a nap.

So, this will be short because I got to go watch my news and weather. I hope you have a great evening. Peace

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

There is no sunshine this morning; only clouds and occasional showers so far. The weatherman had said we had a 30% chance of rain today so his box is now checked.

I filled a bunch of bird feeders last evening so my feathered friends have plenty to munch on at the backyard buffet today. The hummingbirds are keeping me amused this morning despite the showers. They just chase one another all over this place. I'm fairly certain there are three now. But they are so quick that it is hard to keep up with them. And sometimes when I see two of them, it is because I'm catching reflections of them in the windows so it becomes an optical illusion.

Ms. Kate and I sat up and watched the Olympics again last light. Our athletes are doing so very well. I think our local girl, Lilly King, is supposed to swim this morning again in the 200 meter breaststroke. Good luck to her and all of our athletes. We watched the women's synchronized diving last night. The Chinese team was phenomenal as always. I don't think they have ever lost. But then, they are a state sponsored team and as long as you do well, your family gets to live a little better. So the incentive is huge and the athletes all look like clones of one another.

You probably think that I am going to be going to the church today and run the bulletins off for Sunday. But --- you would be wrong. I live so far on the edge of life that I'm going to do it tomorrow. Ms, Kate and her sister are going to French Lick Casino and Resort tomorrow and tomorrow night so I'll go run the bulletins tomorrow just because I'm that kind of a wild guy.

I've set here long enough for the cardinals to arrive. I find it interesting that I can almost predict when the different birds will get here. They do it so routinely. This morning's guests are mostly finches and sparrows, cardinals and downy woodpeckers, and of course the hummingbirds. And I have a couple of squirrels that have come back and forth to the feeders. They eat for a few minutes, run off and then come back again. Mr. Fuss-a-lot, the blue jay was here but all he did was fuss and jump around and then left. I guess he didn't like the company.

There may not be much sunshine today but as I look out the windows of the sun porch, it is still a beautiful sight to look at the beauty of the flowers and the intricacies of God's creatures like my little aviary friends. I've said it a million times I guess but I just don't understand how anybody could chalk up the creation of this world and all of the billions and billions of things that keep this planet and all of its inhabitants in perfect sync; how can you say it all started with a gigantic gaseous explosion and eliminate Divine design. So, I thank God every day for the world God created. I hope you will stop sometime today and do the same. Peace.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The month marches on doesn't it? It is the 9th of August and it certainly feels like the ninth of August if you step outside. It's hot, humid and muggy if you try to do too much of anything. I feel for folks that have to be out in this weather whether it is for work or something else. I think back to many years ago when I spent a summer helping a buddy of mine roof a couple of houses in this kind of weather. It wasn't pleasant at all.

The big news around our city of Evansville is that a young nineteen year old girl (Lilly King) from here won a gold medal at the Olympics last night. It's very exciting for the city and the state. She has a chance to medal two more times but this race was her strong event. Who knows??? Ms. Kate and are bleary-eyed this morning because we were up watching the Olympics late last night. I finally went to bed at 0130 this morning and she came to bed at 0200. Then we were up at 0730. We haven't accomplished much so far today beyond playing our silly computer games and having breakfast of coffee and a banana and a bowl of cereal for me.

I got some good work done yesterday in the office. I had been working on a sermon for the 21st of August and it had just set there with nothing coming to me to write. Yesterday it clicked and I got it written and I think it will be a good one. What I didn't get done yesterday was filling up the bird feeders. There is, of course, plenty of food out there but the feeders closes to the house are pretty well empty. So, at some point today I need to do that. I also need to fill up the bird baths again. When the heat index is 108 like it will be today, they splash out a lot of water taking cooling baths and they also drink a lot.

I called my sister-in-law this morning to see if I need to mow her yard this week or not due to her feeling under the weather. But, she said she mowed part of it yesterday, is resting today, and will finish it tomorow. Shoot, I was hoping to get to use her mower again. But, she said it hadn't gotten tall and was easy to mow this time. I guess I'll just have to settle for mowing mine and maybe Dan's. I wouldn't want to do that for a living but I do love riding my mowers. I'm just a kid at heart.

I saw an advertisement yesterday about the annual buffalo roundup in Custer State Park. That is an item on my "bucket list" to go and watch. Every fall they round up approximately1200 buffalo, check them out and vaccinate them and cull out "X" number of them for sale. The advertisement was from a travel company offering a seven day trip for $1500.00 a person based upon double occupancy. I wouldn't want to do the bus trip, but now I know how to find out when the round up occurs. Next year I plan to be there for it. See, I'm not just a kid at heart --- I'm still a cowboy kid at heart.

It's time to finish my cup of coffee and get on with my day. I hope your day is full of blessings. Peace.

Monday, August 8, 2016

It's a brand new week! Welcome to Monday. Aw c'mon, you know you have to face it even though you'd really rather turn back over and cover your head with the blankets. But come on out and enjoy this brand new day God has given us.

It's a bright blue 82 degrees here this morning and the humidity is tolerable. The phlox is providing a bounty of whatever for the butterflies, bumble bees, honey bees, and hummingbirds this morning. Ms. Kate refilled the one hummingbird feeder yesterday afternoon and those two little buzz-wings have been busy eating from it and shooing one another off from it. I'm not sure we don't now have a third hummingbird out there. That would be super excellent. I love the way they go to my hummer-bar feeder; they look like they are eating corn on the cob the way they just go from port to port on that thing. I think there are 24 ports for them.

The critters have emptied several of the sunflower feeders again, especially the ones right up here in the pussy willow tree. So, sometime today, I need too go refill those and the barks butter feeders again. And, it looks like I better put out another three or four suet cakes. It is amazing how much birdfeeders I end up buying with all of the different varieties. But it does make for a peaceful morning sitting out here watching them. Then again we try to be out here around 1600 hrs because that is evening feeding time for them., especially the cardinals.

We had a full church yesterday for the worship service. One of the families had their annual family reunion yesterday and they came forr the service. I love it when the church is full. I love hearing the sound of their voices as they sing the familiar old hymns. We ran 80 bulletins this weekend used almost all of them.

Neighbor Dan finally got home from Washinngton DC area. They've been gone three or four weeks, I'm not sure which. His wife is Vietnamese and she has brothers and sisters on both coasts and down in Texas. So they go and stay for weeks at a time so they can visit everybody. She has that strong cultural tie to her family. I think she would love to move to CA because that is where her mother lives. But his family is here and their kids and grandkids are here, so this is where they stay. I expect him to tell me they are heading out to CA for another five week visit any day. Now that they are both retired, she doesn't ever want to stay home. It works for them but wouldn't work for us. I'm of the school that company and fish go bad after three days and it is time to move on.

The coffee cup is empty and I need to get busy. I've said my thanks to the Lord for yet another day of opportunities with to be of service and I'm grateful for another day of blessings, especially that blessing that I need to go refill a coffee cup for. Have a great day!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Good morning on this cloudy, 81 degree morning. There is little to no breeze out there this morning but the humidity has dropped quite a bit. That should make for a more comfortable day, and no rain is projected. All in all, it is supposed to be a nice day. Miss. Kate and I need to find something to do today that isn't work. It has been one of those weeks where everyday was full of things to be done or people to take care of. Today the schedule is empty. Of course, I guess I could go down and do a little writing since I haven't written a full paragraph this week. But then I'd defeat the purpose of taking a day off wouldn't I?

My aviary friends are satisfied this morning. I filled fifteen feeders yesterday afternoon so everybody has plenty. If we go out today I may pick up another 40 lb bag of sunflower seed. The can is about half empty so it will hold that much anyway. The hummingbirds are busy this morning. They eat, they buzz around, they chase one another, and every once in a while, they will stop and land on a small limb and rest. As much energy as they burn, it is no wonder they eat constantly. It always amazes me that these tiny things fly hundreds and even a thousand miles for their migration pattern. It gives real meaning to the the song title; "His Eye is on the Sparrow".

I''m hearing a lot of noise outside the yard and to the right. So I had to go check of course to see who was doing what. My next door neighbor to the right is pressure washing his side of the fence that divides our property. It is his fence to do so. But --- I doubt he knows just how bad the pickets are on that fence. He's liable too blow several of them off. I've gone out there several times and put new screws in the boards so they will stay in place in the last couple of months because they had rotted off of the screws that were holding them. Ms. Kate and I replaced all of our fencing several years ago with pressure treated lumber and our boards are in pretty good shape yet; although it really needs painting or something. We used an excellent paint on it but that does eventually wear off in the weather. We discussed having a new fence put in but I know that would really run up some money. The biggest problem with our fence is that it was not professionally built in the first place and the spacing isn't even between the fence posts, which are in concrete. So, when we replaced the fencing, we replaced it panel by panel. I'd take a panel down, use it as a template and rebuild the new panels exactly like the old. It worked; but it wasn't great. We'll see what happens now with the fence Jeff is washing.

Time to refill the coffee cups and maybe fix a pan of sweet rolls. I hope you have a most wonderful day and a blessed weekend. God is good; all the time. Stop and give thanks for your blessings.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Hot, hot Friday! Heat index is between 105 & 110 despite the ambient temp being only 88 degrees. While it is overcast somewhat, I wouldn't be surprised to see a big ole' nasty summer storm pop up any time. Although --- my radar app shows the storm going north and east of us.

The heat even has the birds agitated. I must have at least a dozen sparrows and finches out there trying to eat off of the suet feeders and they are spending more time fighting than they are eating. The blue jays is pecking at the cardinals, the doves are fussing at each other, the downy woodpeckers are pecking at the finches --- it's a mess out there today. I have two hummingbirds and of course they are fighting because it's totally in their territorial nature to do so.

My morning started off as scheduled this morning with a hospital visit. I went Assad set with a family this morning while one of the family had to have a kidney biopsy. She made it through the procedure just fine and now they just wait for the results which should be to her doctor's office in a few days. We pray for the best results and trust in God's grace. Beyond that, worrying about it won't change any results. If the mass they tested this morning proves to be benign; we would have worried for nothing. If the mass proves to be cancerous; worrying about it wouldn't have made it better or worse. So, we pray for strength and patience.

The grass looks like it has dried out from rais and dews, so maybe I should jump on the JD and take care of my front yard and Dan's yard. It won't be that hot riding on the mower because there is a slight breeze out there and if the sun stays behind the clouds it won't feel so bad.

From the looks of things, I better be sure and fill the feeders today too. It looks like all of the sunflower seed feeders are empty. That's why they are all crowding around the suet feeders etc. What I'm surprised at though is that there is no birds in the bird baths splashing around. I need to check them too.

I think I'll finish this cup of coffee and get busy. It's Friday so I hope you have time to enjoy your weekend. Call someone you love, go visit a friend, do something with your spouse; --- just get out and enjoy the world and blessings that God has provided. But --- don't forget to take time to be grateful foro those blessings and give thanks to the Lord. Peace.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Happy Thursday morning! This week has flown by and has been an extra busy week. There hasn't been a lot of chair sitting and relaxing opportunities and tomorrow morning will be about the same with another early morning hospital /parishioner visit.

Today however, my calendar is allegedly clear and maybe I'll get some work done in my offfice. I've only gotten about a half a page written on a sermon since Tuesday morning. I know I'm ahead still but I like to stay that way. That is how I handle weeks like this one has been and why I always try to work ahead.

Yesterday I spent the morning until around noon up at my sister-in-law's place mowing her yard. I told you that she was in the hospital in my Tuesday writing. Well, Tuesday evening I went up and started on her yard because it had really gotten tall. But, we've been dodging rain all week. I got a start on it but the mower started really leaving a lot of clumps and the I wasn't sure why. And it was almost dark, so I stopped and went back yesterday morning. Karen has a really nice John Deere, with a bagger system on it. I never use a bigger so I'm not familiar with the things that could go wrong. Well, bottom  line is that due to the wet and heavy grass, the discharge chute had gotten clogged up. Once I fixed that, it worked fine. She has a large yard and it took about three and a half hours to get it done. But, I love her JD. It is one of those that has four wheel steering which I think is better than a ZTR. Heck, if I had time, I'd go mow her yard more often just to ride that mower. But -- I'd have to wrestle her for it cause she likes using it too. (I think I could take her.) ---- The good news is that Karen got to come home from the hospital yesterday afternoon.

Yesterday was Wednesday and of course that meant it was also "bulletin running day". Lord know, I wouldn't want to change routine and maybe do it today. LOL. I also had a parishioner coming in for some counseling so that took care of my afternoon and part of my evening. Today my front yard and Dan's yard could use morning again but I think I'll save that for tomorrow and hope it doesn't rain, although I think the forecast calls for pop-up showers today and tomorrow. I know the heat index is supposed to go to 103 today.  Maybe being inside is a good idea.

My in-attention to my birdfeeders find several of them empty this morning so I reckon I better do something about that today. I only have maybe four cardinals out there this morning and some downy woodpeckers. There is a blackbird and a couple of doves that are walking around the yard cleaning up dropped residual from under the feeders. Ms. Kate told me that the hummingbird has really taken to the "hummerbar" feeder that I put out there. I probably need to change out the feed in that one too and keep it fresh.

The phlox, the Black-eyed Susan's,, the knock-out Rose's and the Magic Lilies are all blooming and the butterflies and the hummer are taking full advantage for thee blooms. The finches are eating the seeds from the phlox. It is a peaceful setting and God speaks in the stillness. Everyday I give God praise for the planet on which we live. It is a wonderful world. Take a few minutes today and just look around you. No matter where you are --- if you just look for it you will see the handiwork of the Creator. Take time to give God praise today. Peace.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Good morning on this 2nd day of August. It is going to be another steamy one with the possibility, (more like a probability) of more rain or pop-up thunderstorms. We wouldn't want to miss out on a chance for that.

I didn't have much opportunity or time for porch setting yesterday. I had a parishioner who had to be at one of our hospitals yesterday morning for a procedure and I wanted to be there for that with the family. We all sat there for about fifteen or twenty minutes and they came and got my parishioner to take her bac and prep her. After a while we went back and they were making last arrangements and signing papers etc. So, I left, we had already said our prayer. I stopped on the way home and picked up Ms. Kate and I a sandwich for lunch and came on home. I checked my messages when I got home and found out that the hospital/doctor had an emergency and they have to reschedule my parishioners appointment to Friday morning. Bless her heart.

Then, -- yesterday afternoon, I got a call from my sister-in-law, Karen, telling me she was on the way to the ER for a blood transfusion. She said she had been feeling really weak and tired and run down and her Digestive Care people had told her to got get blood at the ER. Well, you don't just walk in to an ER and order up a unit or two of blood like it was a hamburger and fries. An hour or more later she asked me to go get her "ever-ready travel bag" because she would be spending the night. We finally left the hospital a little after 2000 hrs and she still had not received her transfusion. My late texting with her confirmed that it was 2215 before she had her first transfusion and they were still going to give her another unit after that. I've just gotten a call from her and she will be staying another day while they run more tests. Karen is a crohns patient so things can go from bad to worse fairly quickly.  We'll go up and see her later today.

So that's my yesterday and why I didn't get around to my blog. It's good to be back in the sunporch today watching my critters, although I see they have emptied the feeders already again. And --- I need to mow the back yard today and pick up a few small limbs. The back yard doesn't grow nearly as fast as the front yard does because it is so very shady back here. The front yard could use it again already. It has become an every four day thing which is unheard of for late July/August. Surely we'll break out of this pattern soon. Most years, by now we would be whining for rain because thee ground would be hard and cracked. Humans are hard to satisfy.

I need to walk out and check on my tomatoes and cucumbers and "bring in the harvest" first thing this morning so I reckon, I'll put my coffee cup down and go do that. I hope you have a blessed day. Take the time to do something nice for someone today. It will make you feel good about yourself. Peace.