1,000 GIFTS, #325 to #346

Multitudes on Mondays

My Monday recording journey of counting grace gifts continues…all from His Hand.

325.  Cotton fields are blooming and there are hundreds of acres of cotton right across the street from our home…fields white unto harvest as far as you can see.

326. Text messages that begin “what are y’all doing today?” and end with lunch around the table.
327. Preparing breakfast for my Dad and surprising him by riding next door on the golf cart to deliver it to him.  He was sitting on the porch and was so proud of his breakfast! My mom and I enjoyed our coffee together while he ate.  He shared his raisin toast with her…
328. Praying together and being of one heart.
329. Bible study class full of women eager to learn and “get wisdom!”  I love my Wednesday night ladies.
330. Answered prayer with successful back surgery for a friend’s teenage daughter. Praying for a full recovery.
331. A warm and dear hug for a friend whose father passed away 2 weeks ago and telling her that her loss had already touched my heart…prompting me to make breakfast for my dad and deliver it to him. Tears were shed.
332. The promise of lunch this week with two young 20-somethings, Taneea and Sarah. 
333. The joy that they would even want to spend time with me, a 50-something.
334. A life lived with the anticipation of splashing the Living Water with young women as I grow older, both in wisdom and in my walk of faith.
335. Cards in the mail, hand-written, full of love.
336. A Saturday afternoon all to myself…sewing…sewing…putting together a new quilt. These are some of the 5″ squares that will form the blocks. They are lying on my ironing board. There will be many more made before the quilt is finished. Guess what? The fabric is called GRACE and I love that – it is so fitting for counting GRACE gifts.

337.  Here’s a picture with the “Grace” tag…I hope my life is “tagged by Grace.”

338. Lots of sweet tweets from my friends who attended Dot.Mom in Birmingham, a Lifeway conference for mothers – a time of great encouragement for them. I love you Sophie, Melanie, Robyn, Fran, Dedra, Dori, Amanda, Heather…I pray God blessed you deeply!
339. Sweet emails back and forth with my oldest son. He is a good man, a good husband, father, pastor.
340. A phone call from my youngest son who is out of state on business…he is a good man, a good husband, father, and he misses this little pumpkin, will be home very soon!
341. The little pumpkin with the yogurt-covered-smile. He misses his daddy too, but my sweet daughter-in-law said he has been a trooper.

342. A text message from my daughter-in-law that included a little video of my 16 month old granddaughter talking and making the cutest face as she talked, crinkling her nose.
343. Back-to-back nights at home with just my husband that included supper and then long conversation on the front porch swing, enjoying the cooler weather. Simple grace gifts.
344. I’ve been the wife of a minister for 34 years, 3 months, 15 days. Have I shared how much JOY there has been? Well there has. And heartache and sorrow too – but mostly joy, and I’m grateful. The joy of serving in one church for over 23 years, raising our boys here.
345. Having said that, I’ve been singing in my husband’s choir for 34 years, 3 months, 15 days. I love that with all my heart. Each week the anticipation of being part of corporate worship under his leadership blesses me. I know he is a man of integrity and his personal worship enables him to lead in public worship. I know better than anyone else.
346. And this is our church choir. I love these people so much. It’s hard to see me, but I’m on the very back row (always have been) on the far right as you face the choir.  This recording was made just yesterday morning by a man sitting in the congregation. Revelation 1:8 – He is Alpha and Omega.


1,000 GIFTS, #305 to #324

As I count these grace gifts to 1,000 with Mrs. Ann Voskamp, I am beginning to see a pattern, and that in itself is a gift to me. Back at the beginning of the year, I wrote this post on 1-1-11 and vowed to “Keep It Simple Sister.” A goal to slow down and enjoy life’s simple pleasures, to prioritize my time, my goals. This JOY of counting has helped me to see that the gifts I cherish and count are in God, my faith in Christ, my family, my precious grandchildren, friends, God’s creation, gardening, quilting (my newfound JOY), and not in STUFF. May it ever be so, sweet LORD.
305. As I stepped outside my office one day last week headed to lunch, I saw this beautiful Tiger Swallowtail butterfly on the zinnia flowers. Just that moment…for me. I love the camera on my cell phone for d-e-l-i-g-h-t-s just like this one!
306. First night of Fall Bible study last Wednesday night, as we began Beth Moore’s study from Proverbs: “Wising Up…Wherever Life Happens.”  Wisdom is Supreme, get it! Great group of women all ready and eager to dig into the Word of God. Proverbs 4:7
307. The joy of trusted confidence as a friend shared a prayer request concerning her health, and then the Spirit prompting me to pray for her. Thank you sweet Father for prompts to remember to pray.
308. A song from Travis Cottrell’s newest release that has ministered to my soul, the depth of my soul I say.  It is called “Thanks Be To Our God.”  I love this new CD very much, but song #13 has been on repeat track the most.
309. A first for me where my grandchildren are concerned! I went to Zeke’s school, actually it is a Mother’s Morning Out program at his church (where his daddy, my son, is the Pastor) for “Grandparents Day.” They sang two songs and quoted a Bible verse and every one of them looked adorable.  And I got four spontaneous hugs. I was so sad that I had forgotten my camera. But when I returned to work I received this photo collage in an email. God graced me in that my friend who is a real photographer was there with a camera for his child…which records one of those wonderful hugs from Zeke!
310. The intoxicating divine smell of Tea Olive Shrubs blooming in our garden. My husband and I LOVE them. They bloom in the spring, in the fall, and on a warm winter’s day they can surprise you with small white blooms which smell wonderful. We have them by the front porch swings and this is the shrub in my back patio garden. It was a gift for my 50th birthday from some wonderful friends…they bloom when the weather changes. I hope that I will “bloom in life’s changing seasons too.”  May it ever be, sweet Lord.
311. The full moon. I especially love the big Harvest Moon of this past week. I keep up with it on my Nook with a “moon phases app.” Yes I do. I am a moon phases nerd. I love to talk waning and waxing gibbous…
312. A book and sweet card of encouragement received in the mail from Mrs. Esther Burroughs who spoke at our Women’s Retreat last weekend. She is challenging me to “pour into” the lives of young women. The big watering can at the top of my blog is one of my favorite items – I collect watering cans. I need to remember to splash the Living Water of Jesus everywhere I go…
313. Plans made for a Prayer/Planning Retreat for our Women’s Ministry team, pastor’s wives, and other women’s leaders in our church. It is going to be WONDERFUL. We will all stay in one cabin…with a fireplace…at a Retreat Center on the Savannah River. Can’t wait!
314. My grandson Zeke spent the night this past weekend and while we were playing outside he lightly skinned both his knees when he fell. As I was applying Spiderman bandaids :), he said, “Gran Jan, will you pray and ask God to heal me?” I prayed and hugged him tight. He blesses me so.
315. My son sent me this picture and “asked for prayer.”  He said it was the first time he had taken both children out to breakfast alone. His wife was attending a consignment sale and it is important to be FIRST in line at those…aren’t they PRECIOUS? YES THEY ARE!
316. This is Jackson, the “Master of the Slide.” Isn’t he PRECIOUS? YES HE IS!
317. I finished Jackson’s quilt top last week and am getting ready to put it together. Here is one of the blocks with his name…I can’t wait to see how it all turns out.
318. Reaching for a soft tissue in my purse to hand to a woman next to me in the choir as her tears fell. Thankful for the bond of women, sisters, mothers, friends.
319. Once again our interim Pastor Rev. Joel Southerland blessed us with a word from the Word. God is using him greatly during this season in our church without a Senior pastor. There is a fresh healing wind of the Holy Spirit blowing across our congregation and the JOY is evident each time we gather to meet. I’m very thankful for lessons learned, continuing to pray for everyone…those gone, and that that remain. Soli deo Gloria.
320. A hint of fall in the air…my very favorite season of all.
321. A Girls’ Night Out with my sweet best friend of 23 years, Lanie. Delicious fresh guacamole and chips at a restaurant in Macon…buzzing through Barnes and Noble, the Ulta store…time together that is so precious. Sharing prayer requests, life’s seasons.
322. My first pumpkin spice latte of the season. Yes, that’s a gift! I do love coffee.
323. Thanking God for my health has always been in my prayers to God, but has really been on my heart this week as so many are facing surgery and treatments and struggle with daily issues. Thank you Father for a healthy body.
324. Seeing my father kneel down beside Mrs. Mary’s chair in her home, take her hand, and offer to help her with anything she needs in the days ahead. Mary is an elderly black woman who has just lost her husband of more than 50 years. I love our rural community. We had taken a meal to them…because that’s what Southerners do. I’ve never been prouder of my dad than I was at that moment. He has a heart of gold. Being the tough former Marine that he is, you have to “mine it out sometimes”…but it was shining that moment.  🙂
Multitude Monday Blessings to you,

1,000 GIFTS, #288 to #304

Grace gifts, still counting along the way; very thankful and very blessed.
288. A blessed Women’s Ministry Conference this past weekend on 09-10-11 with the wonderful Mrs. Esther Burroughs. She is a precious mature Christian woman who shares from her life’s experiences and all who listen benefit. She taught from John 4 and encouraged us to “splash the Living Water” as we “Go OUT of our way while ON our way…” It was glorious!
289. This is a picture from the Conference with Mrs. Esther (she is in the black and white stripes). I call it “Generational Joy.” The two young women on the left are in their early 20’s and are DELIGHTFUL! Esther encouraged us to pour into their lives.
290. Helping Hands at the Women’s Conference…how blessed we are to have a church where people serve with JOY. Thank you Cindy, Sarah, Taneea, Teresa, Pam, Doris, Lisa, Kathy, Susan, Natalie, Lanie, Mindy, Lynn, Barbara, Rounette, Karen, Charlene, Patti, Jeanette, and Cheryl.
291. Sharing a recipe for Tomato Pie with my sweet friend Lanie.
292. Moonvines…this picture was taken just a few hours ago at dusk. I love these flowers. They will bloom all night and close up in the morning…
293. Another quilt class and girl’s night out with Lanie. We learned techniques for “half-square triangles,” but we learned much more than that…quality time in the car during a road trip helps you learn each other’s hearts and prayer needs…what a gift from God.
294. Driving through this allee of trees as I leave home each morning and returning each evening and celebrating His lovingkindness in the morning and His faithfulness at night.  (Psalm 92:1-2)  So grateful for my job and the people I work with and for. Grace.
295. Looking up from my desk at work just in time to see my oldest son and his son coming in the door to see me. Zeke gave me the sweetest hug ever. He said, “I’m your boy, Gran Jan.”  He knows that blesses my soul.
296. Another great practical message from Rev. Joel Southerland as he preached from the book of Job on the value of our families.
297. Finding a long-lost receipt. Thankful. Needed it.
298. Collards and turnip greens planted in my fall garden.
299. Attending a wedding with my husband this past Saturday of a young woman named Julie who we’ve known since she was 5 years old. Her groom was injured in an accident 14 months ago. Seeing her speak vows that she has already lived by standing true to him gives me such hope for young people and marriage.
300. Two big bags of fresh peas from a friend at church – thank you Mrs. Rhoda! I love to sit and shell peas – it is so soothing.
301. Jasmine. In my garden.
302. Long bike rides with my husband down country roads, cool weather. Good exercise. Weight loss success! So thankful. 
303. Spending time with my youngest son and his son tonight. Getting to play with little Jackson, feed him, bathe him, and tuck him in was so tender for me. My daughter-in-law is taking a class and was not home. I missed her, but love seeing the home she is building for my son and grandson.
304. New books and the anticipation of reading “The Resolution for Women.” The book is by Priscilla Shirer.  Excited about participating in her on-line book club this Friday.  Details will follow on my blog.
Nighty-night sweet friends,

1,000 GIFTS, #270 to #287

My heart is so full of JOY from counting blessings, the wonderful Grace of Jesus! Thanking Him today for this Multitude Monday, a rare and peaceful day off from work, a restful day.
270. A new season of Fall Bible study begins tomorrow and a kickoff brunch was held 2 weeks ago with lots of women attending – excited about studying God’s Word.
271. Two littlest grandchildren sliding down slides…they are strong and healthy and I am so thankful.
272. A pretty little cat has taken up at the farm…I hope she stays…outside for sure! 🙂
273. My daughter-in-law Carrie sent a video of grandson Zeke singing a song he wrote, “Every Day We Go to Church…”  I’ve watched it dozens of times. So thankful she shared it with me!
274. Another video sent to me by my son of Zeke asking “Gran Jan, can I spend the night with you? I really want to…”
275. Zeke spending the night…pizza, popcorn and Charlotte’s Web… I really wanted him to!
276. Celebrating my son’s 30th birthday last Monday with this post.  Lots of memories of a fine son. God’s Grace multiplied.
277. Thankful for Jeremy’s wife, who also celebrated a birthday last week…she is a gift to our family.
278. The whole family for lunch on Saturday. I love to cook for them and we had grilled pork tenderloin, hasbrown casserole (recipe here), butter peas, collard greens from my garden (frozen last winter), and these delicious cheese muffins from The Pioneer Woman. I left out the sugar and used self-rising flour. My Dad ate two plates full and that blessed me so much.
279. My two sweet daughters-in-law blowing bubbles for the babies after lunch. They are both so tall and thin…beautiful…one blonde, one brunette, both long prayed for…

280. Three sweet grandbabies chasing those bubbles…it just doesn’t get any sweeter!

281. My daughter-in-law Erin worked so HARD to get a picture of these 3…it is nigh impossible…but I love her for trying!

282. Chocolate-face Jackson…eating his momma’s mini cupcakes!
283. A pot of chili simmering on the stove all day on this wonderful Monday off from work…my husband said it was the best ever.  I love to cook, have I mentioned that? 🙂
284. More material for more quilts…these are called “Charm Packs,” and every square is 5″ and represents all the fabric in a particular line. They make quilting fun and easy because all the fabric blends together…the pink butterflies will be for my granddaughter Madie.
285. I finished Erin’s quilt and gave it to her two weeks ago. She loved all the colors and I hope she enjoys some long naps this fall and winter under her cozy quilt.
286. Just finished Jackson’s “John Deere” quilt top about 3 hours ago. I rode my bike next door to my mom’s house and hung it on her clothesline so I could take a picture. I can’t wait to quilt it. (Zeke picked out the fabric for his John Deere quilt while he was here…)
287. Yesterday our interim pastor Bro. Joel Southerland, brought a message from Job 1:20-22 and I loved this quote…”In the storms of life, our REACTION determines our RECOVERY.” I want my reactions to be right, Spirit-filled, and for His glory. It was a great message.
Count your blessings,
 name them one by one…
and it will surprise you
what the Lord has done!


1,000 GIFTS, #231 to #245

Today has been a wonderful Multitude Monday. It started with a sweet time in the Word this morning…
231. I’m so very grateful and thankful for my quiet time place…
232.  I am on day 86 of a 90-day devotional by Beth Moore entitled “90 Days with Jesus the One & Only.”  I’ve lingered way longer than 90 days as I spent the 40 days of Lent reading  a devotional recommended by my friend Joanne Heim a couple of years ago. After I finish Beth’s devotional I am going to read through the book of Acts. I LOVE THE WORD OF GOD!
233. Last Tuesday our Women’s Ministry hosted a “Summer Sisters Salad Supper.” We enjoyed a sweet time of fellowship with salads of every kind and desserts galore. Over 200 women attended and my dear friend Lanie Nash shared her journey through ovarian cancer. Women’s ministry is hard work, but rewarding…I serve with the best team ever. I could NOT imagine this ministry without Cindy, Teresa, and Jennifer. They serve with hearts of gold.
234.  Speaking of women’s ministry, I received a precious email early this morning from Leah Adams of The Point Ministries.  She is a North Georgia gal and my cooking-canning buddy. Leah is coming to be the guest speaker for our Women’s Ministry’s 14th Annual Christmas Brunch, December 3, 2011, 10:00 a.m. to noon. Leah is a delight. She is a disciplined woman with a passion for the Word of God. She emailed to tell me that she is praying as we plan and prepare.  It blessed my soul!  Thank you Leah – I love you girl! 
235. This little buddy spent the night last Thursday with his Pop and Gran Jan…this smile is the result of a quick trip to the Dairy Queen for ice cream.  D-E-L-I-G-H-T!  (Zeke…not the ice cream!)
236.  Please don’t think me irreverent for taking this picture at such a time…but I wanted to capture the JOY of seeing all these men kneeling in prayer at the altar before evening worship last night. We were singing “Somebody’s Praying” as the men filled the altar in prayer.  Oh God, raise up men to lead our homes, our churches, our land…
237.  I love participating in the “SSMT” Siesta Scripture Memory Team.  Today is August 1st, the day we post our verses to the LPM Blog.   Here’s my post from this morning:

August 1, 2011 at 7:52 am
James 3:18 (NLT)
And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.

238. Yesterday after church we went to the home of my youngest son and his wife to visit and take a nap as we had to be back at church early Sunday afternoon. We live out in the country and it just saves a trip home!  Besides that…we get to fellowship with our youngest grandboy Jackson.  D-E-L-I-G-H-T.

239.  This is the fabric for another new quilt!!! I had ordered some accompanying fabric and found out it was discontinued.  But just today a kind woman in Customer Service at Hancocks of Paducah, KY told me she personally went and found the exact yardage I needed for my quilt.  What a blessing. I thanked her…

240. The book I ordered came in the mail last week. It is a new book that I love for two reasons.  The topic – the Word of God…and the artist…one of my favorites. Karla Dornacher.  Her gifts bless me.

241. I’ve shared from my heart about the death of my sister Jean 26 years ago.  I wrote this post  last year on the 25th anniversary of her death.  It is the “most read” post on my blog. Just this past Saturday I got to spend time with my niece Amy, Jean’s beautiful daughter.  She lives in California, and is visiting home this week. Time with her is rare. There are no words to describe how much she is like her Momma.  Although Amy was only 23 months old when Jean died…she is JUST LIKE HER.  What a gift.

242.  Tonight’s supper included zucchini fresh from the garden. My sweet husband cooked and cleaned up the dishes. I love that man.  He takes such good care of me.
243.  My little granddaughter Madie is really talking a lot. She didn’t spend the night last week, but I’m looking forward to girl-time with her.  I didn’t have that as a “boy mom!” I want to teach her to make biscuits…
244.  And as I sit here listening to the beautiful piano music from Ann Voskamp’s blog I was thinking about the wonderfully gifted pianist at our church.  He is actually the Instrumental Worship Pastor. His name is Rev. Dawson Hull and he is a gifted musician.  Just yesterday I was blessed by his gifts.  As our interim pastor Joel Southerland was sharing during the invitation about “being a Friend of God,” Dawson played an impromptu gentle medley that included “What A Friend We Have in Jesus.”  His sweet wife Taneea is also a gifted musician. Their spirits are a blessing to our church family.  We are thankful for them.
It’s time to hit “publish post” and get ready for bed…and read…and continue to count these gifts to 1,000.  My heart is full tonight…another gift.
245.  A quiet heart…a contented heart.

1,000 GIFTS, #216 to #230

Although I’ve never met Ann Voskamp, her heart for Jesus shines through cyberspace – her blog, her books, her tweets…and she blesses me. This discipline or holy habit or awareness, or whatever you name it…this way of counting grace gifts to one-thousand is a wonder! The consciousness of intentionally seeing God at work all around is uplifting. Some of the gifts are divine and spiritual, some are tangible “things,” some are His glorious creation seen around the farm, some are just in my heart, but ALL are from His Hand, Grace.
216. Singing “I Bless Your Name” at church with our praise team. I love singing with Melissa, Meredith, Tammy, Megan, Gary, Lou, and Gary R.  God is knitting our hearts together more each time we sing.
217. A heart that is healing, sweet victory, answered prayers, awareness of true friends, health, peace of mind – these have been mine in abundance the past few weeks.  I am so thankful.
218. Our long-time pastor, Rev. Rastus Salter always talked about how good the “late peaches” are, the Elberta peaches. He was right – they are the best.  He passed away in 2005 and is certainly enjoying the fruit of his labors. In the presence of Jesus!
219. An impromptu pizza party with my husband, our boys, their wives and our 3 grandchildren. Sometimes unplanned is more fun.  Just “y’all come,” and let’s get together.  And when it ends up that Zeke spends the night, well that is just icing on that sweet cake!
220. Could she be any cuter? This is sweet Miss Madie with her first pigtails. She is talking up a storm and holding her own with big brother Zeke.  She and cousin Jackson are precious to watch together.

221. Front porch rocking chairs, hummingbirds zooming by, and long talks with my sweet husband.  We always say to each other, “it just doesn’t get any better.”  I pray we will be blessed to grow old together (Gran Jan & Pop pillows were made by our daughter-in-law Erin!) I love that man. I love to hear people speak of his integrity… and I’ve heard that spoken often these past months, and it blesses me every time!


222. Fig preserves. Delightfully Southern.  One of my Dad’s sisters (he had eight) taught me how to make them.  Aunt Jimmie Lou.  Even her double name is delightfully Southern! There is nothing better on a hot buttered biscuit than fig preserves.

223. My moonflower vine has blooms. I can’t wait to share the first flowers with you.  One of my favorite authors, Jan Karon, has a book entitled The Trellis and the Seed that is about encouragement…using these wonderful flowers. I grow them from seed each spring and give away all but a few plants to enjoy for myself.
224. I finished the quilt top from the beautiful jelly roll* of batik fabrics.  I can’t wait to quilt it. *By the way, a “jelly roll” is an entire fabric collection that has been laser cut into 2 and 1/2″ strips, then rolled up like a bakery confection and tied with a bow.  Each pack contains one 44″ long strip of each fabric in the group. I LOVE THEM! The possibilities are endless.
225. Which leads to this…the next quilts I’m planning! I bought a lot of John Deere fabric to make quilts for the boys – the big boys and the little boys!
226. New life on the farm just today – this Monday.  A new calf, and three new lambs – one a set of twins…this wee one is but hours old.
227. Twins – the momma is black and white like this baby.  These are just a few hours old…
228. Hearing the reports from the mission teams that went to Brazil and to Ukraine from my church. Seeing people I know and love light up and come alive when others are won to Christ – of seeing them “love to tell the story.”
229. A letter from my Compassion child, a daughter in Uganda. We wept. I am so thankful to partner with Compassion International to sponsor a boy in Colombia, and a girl in Uganda. I so love this ministry.
230. My magnolias are blooming again. I have two trees – they were given to  me by the women of our church at the Women’s Ministry Christmas Brunch, 2007.  I love that!
Blessings to you on this summer Monday,

1,000 GIFTS, #190 to #206

It has been a month since I shared the wonderful story of Caitlyn’s conversion. She was baptized a couple of weeks ago and is aglow in her new walk with Christ. We still rejoice in being in the right place to water the seeds others faithfully planted. I am continuing to count His gifts with JOY and Ann Voskamp. This counting discipline has affirmed more and more the value of simple things in my life. This simplicity keeps me centered and brings me the most JOY. I don’t take them for granted – I am very thankful.  It has also reassured me of the purpose of blogging – my way of documenting my simple life – my family, our home, our ministry – all grace gifts and His blessings.
190. Celebrating 34 years of marriage 6/11/77 to 6/11/11!  Blessed and spoiled. I love you so much Gary and thank God for bringing us together – high school sweethearts.
191. A blessed productive afternoon spent with two outstanding women’s ministry leaders. Cindy, Teresa, and I inventoried our entire Bible study library and put together a spreadsheet. We are ready and geared up to serve the women of our church. God sure blessed me by sending these women to serve alongside. I love them both so much.
192. Attending the wedding of Jordan and Kristin and knowing them both since they were wee ones – that is so special.
193. A sweet little helper in the garden…this is my grandson Jackson.
194. Being released from the ortho doctor after 5 months – I had torn the PCL in my right knee and it is healing beautifully with physical therapy alone.  Thank you LORD.
195. Another quilt class called “Take 5.”  Five fabrics used in every block.  This is the class I took where I made the quilt for Beth Moore. I received a sweet thank-you note from her day before yesterday. God has used her so much in my life, and I know He is rewarding her in ways that will matter for eternity.
196. Father’s Day dinner with ALL my menfolk around the table (the two below in matching shirts for Father’s Day): Husband Gary, sons Jeremy & Jonathan, Dad Tom, and grandsons-Zeke & Jackson. Blessed indeed. (Thankful for the women around that table too…)

197. A churchwide picnic with fantastic food, fellowship, fanfare (music), fireworks and FUN.  I went by and picked up my grandson Zeke and we had a blast. He was mesmerized with the orchestra.  I adore this picture:

198. An antique biscuit cutter that has scalloped edges…and my grandmother’s biscuit recipe (in the post right before this one).
199. Blueberry bounty and a little granddaughter who loves them.
200. Another new quilt started with a jellyroll of fabric. A jellyroll is pre-cut strips and these are especially beautiful.

201. It is coming together nicely:

202. My backyard garden, a happy place for me to be (if I’m not in the sewing room). :)
203. I have had the blessing to keep my two older grandchildren for 5 whole days (and nights). My daughter-in-law is away visiting her sister & brother-in-law who serve as missionaries. My son is also staying with us and he has been a wonderful help. It has been good to see him be a daddy up close. I worked so hard to get a picture of them…
204. My youngest grandson and his first trip to the ocean. Delight…
205. Blackberry bounty. My dad’s vines. We have had good family time picking these blackberries. Simple things yet again.
206. On this Fourth of July, I’m so thankful and yes, proud – to be an American and live in the greatest country on Earth. Even with all the flaws, I’d still rather live here than anywhere I know.  Send a revival to our land dear LORD.
As I wrap up this list, you can see there is nothing as glorious as the salvation of Caitlyn last month, but these are grace gifts all the same. Family time on the farm surrounded by good food and sweet fellowship…and yes at times some tempers and tired folks, but still all GRACE. And I’m so grateful.