Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Favs- Here and About- Decatur, Indiana

A trip home this year in late summer gave me the time
 to check out a couple of places nearby the growing up place.
So with sisters in tow-- Off  to Decatur, Indiana.
 I had found a cute place on the internet and wanted to see what was there at-
Tattered Treasures- 222 N. Decatur Street- Decatur, Indiana. 46733
Tattered Treasures- blog
TheTatteredTreasures-Facebook

I should have given them a call (260-301-9100)
 to see the days they were open.


So it was a MONDAY----
So we got there and it was CLOSED.
Just looking in the window that day…
Another time.
Found these photos on the internet.





So if you can't go to the Vintage store you want to- then Two Brothers it is.

Time for a breaded tenderloin sandwich with pickles.
WHY can't they serve these in Virginia?

So then we were walking around
 and a group of three women had a cute bag and tissue-
Where did you get that?
TheGraineryCompany-FB
217 1st Street Decatur, Indiana 46733
260-724-3709
thegrainerycompany
We made a beeline.
WOW! they were full gear into fall.
(Check out their FB page to get a peek at Christmas at the Grainery)






Interesting displays
Some more unusual gift items

this mug had to come home with me----ah---   Possibilities


It is a greenhouse and garden center.
Got to meet owner- Marge Bleeke Franz
 and her son-perhaps the tech guy
we chatted about Pinterest-
just saw they are up and pinning-
The Grainery Co- Pinterest

Worth the drive to Decatur.
Oh and because shopping is such hard work-
stopped in at the Old 27 for ice cream.

The Old 27- FBpage



Decatur is full of amazing street side sculptures.

And of course the long time family favorite in Decatur is Yvonne Marie's

We have been shopping there since they opened- maybe 20 years ago?
Hauled a lot of things back to Virginia from this antique mall.
Friendly people and helpers there always.
Another generation at the helm.

All in all a great day in Decatur.
Worth the trip.
Easy parking- (a big deal since I am from the DC area)
Home Town Style and Home Town Heart.

2013 Favs- Down Yonder

It seems like once in awhile a spot rests so markedly in your soul-
 that you must go back there to see the pull that calls your name.
Where you figured out the makings of the world that turned-
and watched ladybugs sunning on concrete-
and sorted out life complexities.
Over and over again.

For me that was always - DOWN YONDER.


The Graft Home place and the ditch bank along the 60 Acres.

And on a day back in May, I revisited the concrete buttress
that was the holder of the world secrets in my growing up days-
 the ditch bank culvert.

And two sisters sat there with me- longing to unmask what we could of this revered spot.

And we laughed and talked about how we all wanted to yell -DOWN YONDER!!!
 first-- after finishing the supper dishes.
 The call out that spotted first dibs on the culvert spot for watching darkness slip
 in quietly behind daylight.





Some years we were sheltered by rows and rows of corn.

And the rise of the water after a hard rain made the small little raft boats
 we quickly made float helter-skelter along the rushing water
 until they got hung up on debris of limb or grass.

I recorded a video of the sounds DOWN YONDER-
 and for some reason Blogger just won't load this right now- 
maybe I can add it in later.
 Maybe it was this spot of sitting here without speaking much-
where God fine-tuned 
a soul to listen to His rhythm of life,
 gave direction and meaning,

and bathed a life-time of yearning into a dusk hollowed whisper.

And as I sit near the land - I think of this verse:

"Keep [God's] decrees and commands, which I am giving you today,
so that it may go well with you and your children after you
 and that you may live long in the land the Lord your God gives you for all time."
Deuteronomy 4:40

Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 Favs- The Brides Danced

Still a few stories that I wanted to post in our 2013 remembrance--


One gathering was the day after youngest daughter's wedding this summer.
Wedding on Saturday night and then gift opening on Sunday afternoon.
Then to humor the mother- all three daughters dressed up in their wedding dresses
 and reenacted some of the photos from their growing up years.

Some summers I fussed and got some wonderful black and white photos
 of them in vintage dresses.
Way back then I would say-

"Someday- we will do this in your wedding dresses."
  And because I am way behind in getting their gowns cleaned and preserved-
  they were all still hanging in the basement--that helped to make the day happen.

For more years than we can count- over twenty-
dear friend Kristin has been part of the sisterhood.
Making memories of giggling, antics and just plain sharing life.
She was a part of the summer dance in 2000-
 as well as the return- thirteen years later.
Some times the story only happens once-
and sometimes the gift comes around again.



The Denninger Sisters
Lto R-Sara- wedding June 2013, Laura- wedding August 2009, Jessica- wedding July 2011




Friend Kristin joined them - (with persuasion) wearing my
 1979 wedding dress and my hat also



Summer 2000- the yard dance




Together by the garden shed- summer 2000





Here is the vintage dress yard run in 2000- 13 years ago



June 2013- we have always loved the color contrasts of hair and skin


Summer 2000


And a day in holding - for a blink of time-
of grace and gift and goodness.



O give thanks unto the Lord;
 for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.
Psalm 136:1

Sunday, December 29, 2013

ADVENT-urous Tags- family project


Sometimes in ministry it is challenging to find activities that bring together family members for a joint project. 
My friend Michele Schulteis, 
an LCMS- trained elementary educator, 
shared this from Bethany Lutheran Church,
 Long Beach, California.


Here is her description of this Sunday after 
Thanksgiving project for families
 at the beginning of ADVENT. 
Think it is a great time to add this to the blog, 
since it always sneaks up so quickly. 
So file this away, and make up a sample so you are ready for next year - far in advance!
Michele shares:
We had our “3rd annual” family advent project Sunday school class the weekend after Thanksgiving.  The past couple of years we did the Jesse Tree project, while this year we came up with ADVENT-urous tags.  We had 25 Christmas discussion starters, tags and supplies so families could create the tags.   I used the questions that were in the book, Celebrating A Christ-Centered Christmas by Sharon Jaynes chapter 5 (pages 23-26) Dinner Conversations.  I made up the rest – though I did get inspiration from the book The Conversation Piece Collection:  The Christmas Conversation Piece- the questions were very basic– just changed the way they were asked.
I presented the discussion starters at our family ministry meeting, Mary Fink suggested tags, I shared the idea with Jeanne Borg-Breen and it came together!  Jeanne completed a sample.
For the event, these items were provided:

tags (Staples is great for these)
  markers, colored tape, glue sticks
 or double sided sticky tape
ribbon or yarn
 scrapbook paper scraps

  Each family had 13 tags on a ring.  They decorated and added the title + the 25 discussion starters back to back (26 pages, 13 tags). Here are the questions.




 ADVENT-urous Tags
Here are the questions that they used for
 family conversation starters around the table and for the tags.
You could use them or modify them for the age group
 you are working with and your own settling.
This was an intergenerational family activity.

Describe the sounds that might
 have been heard in the stable on Christmas night.

Who do you think took care of the sheep
 when the shepherds ran off to see baby Jesus?

Describe a Christmas tree to a blind person.

What do you think the wise men 
wore when they visited Jesus?

What smells do you imagine were in the stable?
  What do you think the animals were thinking after Jesus was born?

What is your favorite Christmas present ever?

What Christmas tradition means the most to you?

How much light does it take to drive out darkness?

What are some amazing facts about
 the Christmas story?

What is your favorite Christmas carol/hymn/song?  
What Christmas song is the first one
 you remember learning?

What is your favorite Christmas smell?
  Sound?  Sight?

What is your favorite Christmas food?  
What is your favorite cookie?

What is your favorite Christmas memory?
  What’s your first Christmas memory?
  Tell about your first Christmas memory.

Describe how the sky looked when the angels
 appeared to the shepherds.

Which person in the Christmas story
 would you like to have been?  Why?

If you were one of the wise men visiting
 Jesus in today’s world, what would you bring Him?

Which event or part of the Christmas season 
do you look forward to most of all?

What makes a Christmas gift really special to you?
  Do you have a favorite gift you have received?

In the Christmas story, Mary was very surprised 
to learn that she would give birth to the son of God.  
What is the best surprise at Christmas
 that you’ve ever had?

What reaction did Mary
 have when the angel visited her? 
Joseph? The shepherds?   
How do you think you would react
 if you were visited by an angel?

What is your favorite Christmas decoration in your house?  Why?

Is there a Christmas tradition that you do not do
 that you would like to start? 
Have you ever looked at the way other cultures celebrate Christmas?

Think of someone in need. 
It could be someone you know
 or someone you may have seen.  
What act of kindness could you do for that person?

In the past year, what is the greatest blessing
 in your life?
What is your favorite day of the week
 for Christmas to be on?

A  D  V  E  N  T -r o u s

Saturday, December 28, 2013

ADVENT review 2013


 This year I waited and waited to begin reading
 the new Ann Voskamp book-The Greatest Gift.
For the past few years I have used Advent Calendars-
 supplied by friend Sybil MacBeth
 to help keep the slowing down heart of Advent preparations. 
So.....


teamed with-


found here-advent-calendar-templates-2013


became this Advent Journey:


And here is a look at the last two year's Advent calendars-




And a favorite C.S. Lewis quote from The Greatest Gift.
 Photo taken of a building along the Potomac River outside of Chadwick's Restaurant-
 Alexandria, Virginia Dec. 27, 2013-
 uploaded to PinWords