Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Laundry Day - Old School

So it was snowy on Sunday, rainy on Monday, and beautiful today. I had to do some laundry. I can't turn down a sunny, lightly breezy day that will perfectly dry my clothes and linens.

While I washed several loads inside the house, I also used my "outdoor washing machine" to do a couple more. Of course, this isn't the complete washing machine you see here, because I'm not in the picture.

Here we can see that the extra capacity tub can easily handle an extra large comfortor with room to spare.

Here the advanced design of the agitator can be seen. Actually, this is a really cool tool. It fits inside a 5 gallon bucket or a 50 gallon "bucket". The plunger is designed to actually push water through the fibers on the downward thrust and then suction it back up through on the lift. I provided the "motor". I used my usual homemade laundry soap and some baking soda in the wash cycle and then some vinegar and essential grapefruit oil in the rinse cycle.

And of course you need a dryer that can handle this big stuff. Fortunately, that's not a problem. I have a high capacy dryer as well!

And of course it's always a pleasure hanging out laundry with such a beautiful view!

So, no, I'm not a complete freak. I got the washing agitator for the very specific reason that huge comfortors and heavy blankets don't really wash well or come out super clean in my home washer and I don't like hanging out at laundromats to uses the mega capacity washers that everyone uses for their nastiest jobs. This really fits the bill, gets me some exercise, and makes all the heavy bedding look and smell wonderful.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Welcome to Colorful Colorado!

It's been precipitating here in our part of Colorado since Friday around noon. I'm not complaining, we always like the moisture. We've had rain, sprinkles, sleet, hail, and now, snow. Yup, I let the dog out this morning and saw that it was actually accumulating a little.

I've often wondered about the state motto, "Colorful Colorado". Honestly, the sky is very blue, the sunsets orange and the trees green. Aside from that there are some wildflower action in the spring and late summer but I wouldn't have thought to call it 'colorful'. Hawaii, California, some of the southeast, sure.

Here's me trying to leave the driveway for church. Hadn't really thought about leaving time for the defroster to work...

But I think I've finally figured it out. I think they mean colorful in the sense that the old man in the overalls at the local garage who calls everyone a "youngun" is colorful. Or the woman who dresses her toy poodle in skirts and takes it to the grocery store is colorful. How else do you explain snow in June. I mean, really?

It didn't get me down, though. I had been looking forward to our brunch and time of fellowship at church today. I was not disappointed. It really feels like family.

And there were lots of tasty treats.

But mostly that good fellowship I mentioned.

Stephanie decided to come up after church today and spend some time. We made a stop at Walmart for some rabbit food and wandered into the fabric aisle. While looking at some pretty fat quarters, I remembered that I wanted to make a reversible sunhat that I had seen on CraftStylish.com. When I told Steph about it, she thought it sounded fun.

So we picked out a couple cute quarters each and went home and set up our sewing in the dining room. We even had a pressing station.

We drafted our patterns for the hats based on the internet instructions. I did mine first and Steph decided to wait and see how it turned out in case she wanted to modify anything for hers. Here she is modeling my hat done in an aqua and brown theme.

She did end up making some modifications and hers was the better for it. She looks real cute in her new hat if I do say so. And she did a mighty fine job in her sewing. It's been years since she sat down to a machine. I think she had a good time.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Ahoy Mateys, Let me tell you about my Big Adventure Day

I did something today that I've never done before. Kent took me to Cherry Creek State Park to the marina to go sailing! The park is 4,200 acres with an 850 acre lake.

What a colorful sail

I was so impressed with how smooth and skilled Kent was. He made it a most pleasurable and exciting experience. He said it's been 30-35 years since he last sailed but you'd never have known it. I was proud that my husband could walk right in the office and take and pass the marina's test to be permitted to rent the boat. And then, with my completely unskilled help, sail us around the bouys, out of the marina and navigate the lake like he does it every day.

Kent did the hard parts but I got to help. I adjusted the jib sail under his direction. When we caught the wind nicely we really sped along. As we would change direction, I would let go of the rope I held to keep the sail taut and move to the other side of the boat to get a different rope and hold it tight in the new position. And if we were tilting a lot with the wind so that the edge of the boat was skimming the water, it was also my job to hook my feet under a strap that ran the length of the inside bottom of the boat, sit on the edge, and lean back while holding onto my jib sail rope.

I was looking forward to it since sailing was such a part of Kent's life when he was growing up. I never expected I would like it SO MUCH. I was enjoying it so much I didn't have time to be worried about the water. And I had a life vest strapped on quite securely. You know me, Safety Girl. I had a great time and I look forward to us going sailing again. We went nearly across the lake and then he sailed us right back to our slip. Well, turns out it was the slip next to our slip. They all looked pretty much alike.

And here's a picture of the kind of boat we were in - it was a 14' Capri. I'm thinking I could become a real sailor girl with a little encouragement.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Deep in Thought

Yes, that would explain how I've been lately. So much to think about out. Much time in prayer, asking Adonai, through His Holy Spirit, to instruct me. I have been listening to the Torah (Genesis - Deuteronomy) and reading from the B'rit Hadashah (New Testament). My main question - does Messiah's gift of salvation through grace actually nullify God's instructions and commands from the Torah?

From my own reading, it appears that Christ/Yeshua Himself observed the feasts, kept the Sabbath, and followed the Torah. And we are told to walk as He walked. I don't see where He ever said that God's commands were to be tossed. His disciples, also, were Torah observant. When did we (Christians) start cherry picking commandments... "OK, we'll stick with the 'shalt not kill' and 'shalt not commit adultery', but 'remember the Sabbath to keep it holy' is really inconvenient, so let's chuck it. And 'not coveting thy neighbor's ---', well, how about just a little, we'll have a home improvement show and do a little Jonesing, what can it hurt?" Sounds like "doing what is right in their own minds". God's mind is not my mind. Can I get an Amen?

As I listen to God's laws and then read from the writings of Paul and Matthew, I am more and more uneasy that I have bought a partial theology. I certainly don't doubt that it is only through Messiah's shed blood that I am saved by grace, not of my own works. Nothing I can do will make God love me more or less. HOWEVER, my thankfulness and love for Elohim in return causes me to wish to obey His commands, heed His instructions, and reverence His Word. I find it a blessing, not a burden, as I learn and follow. My love for God and His Word grows, my passion is ignited, my gratitude is profoundly increased.

Romans 10:4, in most translations, reads that "Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes." But when I dig deeper, the root of the word here translated (telos) more frequently means 'goal' or 'purpose'. In which case, the meaning would be that Messiah is the goal that Torah aims at, rather than Christ brings the law to an end.

And in Matthew 5:17, Yeshua (Christ) says, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter , not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished." Because of Christ, the Law is no longer a burden, we have salvation, now it becomes an act of love and thanksgiving. AND, I am empowered by God's Holy Spirit to keep His commands and follow His instructions.

I also struggle with the confusion of where, exactly, does that then leave me. I am not Jewish. But I read that I am grafted into the tree. That means that for all intents and purposes, I am now one with the tree. I will take my nourishment from the same source and bear the same fruit. But the tree doesn't want to claim me, since I claim Yeshua Messiah. And what does being part of that tree really look like. I am reading carefully to determine what are the words from Adonai Himself and what are the things that man has made up and added to those words.

Elohim commands that we not eat of unclean meats. Pork, rabbit, shrimp - all elements of my diet thus far - are right out. But in some Jewish teaching, the rind of pork is OK, while I can't put dairy products with my meat. What? Well, apparently the rind of the pork was never meant to be eaten so it is therefore exempt from the unclean status. (Manmade stipulation) And as for the cheese in my chicken enchiladas? Well, there is that reference to not boiling a baby goat in its mother's milk. (Again, manmade stipulation, it takes some gymnastics to work this one up). So for now I am trying to learn what it was Adonai commanded and separate it from all the stuff man decided to add.

So I have small struggles (I really like bacon) and large struggles (Where would I fit in? Will friends or family reject me if I begin to live by my newly birthed convictions? Why does my boat have to be rocked at all? Why didn't I take Hebrew in high school instead of French?) There are many more questions and mostly I am reading, listening and then sitting, trying to be quiet, and waiting for God to show me His truth.

Anyway, I'm drifting. Here are a few things that I wanted to share: (the bold is my own emphasis)

Here is an excerpt from Derek Prince Ministries Weekly E-Devotional for June 7, 2010:
Building on God's Laws
Here is a word for you from the Word.

Psalm 119:19-20
I am a stranger on earth; do not hide your commands from me. My soul is consumed with longing for your laws at all times. NIV

I suppose there comes a time in the life of every one of us when everything seams so impermanent, so transitory. We don't know where we can find anything that's permanent, that endures, that's secure. We ourselves are just like a little breath, a vapor that's here today and gone tomorrow.

Some people fight that off with some kind of addiction. They turn to alcohol or drugs or they give themselves over to some kind of fleshly indulgence because they don't want to face the fact of human impermanence; that we are not here to stay forever; that this world is not our final resting place.

But there's another way to turn. We don't need to turn to narcotics, to something that drugs us, to something that deadens us and blinds us. There's another way to turn. "Do not hide your commands from me. My soul is consumed with longing for your laws at all times." There is something that is permanent in this life; it's readily accessible to us. It's God's Word, its His laws, it's His commandments. And as we turn to these and lay hold upon them and begin to build our life on them there comes into our temporary, transient, impermanent life a new kind of solidity, an eternity that's from the Word of God. - Derek Prince

As I am reading more, questioning more, learning more, I continue to ask myself if I am being drawn into some sort of legalism. I keep checking my heart and I don’t believe I am but I really appreciated these posts I found that help us have a measure for checking our hearts and also help explain why it seems to be such a fear:

Legalism: Yours, Mine and Ours

You Are A Legalist

Now for something lighter... Kent asked me a question that I thought I would repeat here - were all the pictures from my last post taken the same evening? Yes. They were. The sky was in a continuous state of change.

And here are a couple pics from Sunday evening's sky. I love the pinks and peach and that double arc.

I apologize if this post seems to be all over the place. So much has been going on internally and I've talked a lot with Kent, with my sister, and with Valerie, but I've not tried to share it in depth until now. But I've reached the point where it is beginning to overflow. This has been a long one. If you got this far, thanks for reading. : )

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

Lyre, Lyre, Needle's on fire!

And a few of the things I've been up to...

I'm still cooking. Just not on my 'Once and for All Week' routine. Kent insisted on taking this picture of our dinner table a couple days ago. Grilled mahi mahi tuna, corn on the nob (as Ken would say), watermelon, sweet potatoes, salad and lemonade. A summertime feast.

I finished the Lyre and Rose block for my quilt. It had dragged for some time and then I took it to Kathy's on Memorial Day and sat on the deck and stitched. Suddenly time and the applique flew by and I completed it before the afternoon was over. That included stitching on some 6-7 leaves and the rose.

And Kent got to experience his first library Whale of a Book Sale today. We went down to the fairgrounds this afternoon and found some books we had wanted and some we didn't know we wanted until we found them.

Of particular note, several Rodale organic gardening books, Books 1 and 2 of the Foxfire series, and Little House on a Small Planet - which is one of our favorites and now we'll have a copy to loan.

I'm thinking about going back back on Sunday for bag day. $5 for all the books I can fit in a bag. And I have some BIG bags! : )

I think we've seen our last snow

At least for the next couple of months.

Here are the leaves on our aspens... looking quite pretty and perky. They are each less than an inch in diameter at this time but they are growing quickly.

And they make such a pretty silhouette against the evening sky.

While it may not be bathed in rose and gold, this sunset behind the mountains is still quite captivating. I love the way the sun lights up the bottoms of the clouds.

Beans and Blooms

I thought perhaps it was time for an update on my seedlings. To say they seem confused is an understatement. Or perhaps I'm the one who is confused. I thought I planted normal plants.

But they are not acting very normal. Here they are still only 5-6 inches tall. And blooming. Yes, folks, those are squash blossoms. I suppose I should nip them off and see if the plant would like to get bigger. Past experience on this mountain tells me that is likely at least 73.2% wishful thinking.

Blooms not enough for you? How about a crop of beans? Here we have Contender and Striped Annelini Bush Beans. And Oh, how they seem to want to produce! Maybe I should just be happy with my dwarf plants and get what I can off them...

I've been distracted...

That's what I'll say has kept me away from blogging. Actually I have been enjoying my father's visit with us. Here you can see that he is the talk of the table when we get together.

We've had some nice family dinners and lots of conversation. I'm glad he was finally able to make the visit that he meant to make in December.