Monday, June 25, 2012

Wedding Bells for Steven and follow!

Over the weekend we celebrated in our backyard the exciting engagement of our son Steven and his fiancé Sara! We are all so happy for them and excited to assist in any way with their wedding plans. We started our weekend toasting them and praying for much joy and happiness as they begin the steps to marriage! The girls and I decorated the backyard, making a canopy of lights amid the trees and enjoyed an Italian themed dinner party two evenings in a row! Everyone was happy and the joy ahead in our our lives is looked forward to with thanksgiving! It is so fun having everyone together! (we missed Shelly and Jeremy).

Thank you Kacie and Kara for all your help in preparing our celebrations!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Entertaining Southern Style.....

It's summertime here in the SOUTH, doors swing open, visitors are invited up on the porch or into the courtyard and iced tea is served! Southerners have always been known for their southern hospitality as it is a way in the south. Come on over and enjoy a glass of tea. That would be sweet tea with lemon and a sprig of mint from the garden. Entertaining is usually more formal around holidays, weddings, baby arrivals, and anniversary celebrations but, the BEST celebration of all is a casual get together for a glass of iced tea and perhaps a slice of cake on a summer porch.

Southern iced tea is made by bringing five cups of water to a boil, adding two family size tea bags and let steep for ten minutes. Remove tea bags and add 1/2 to 3/4 cup of sugar[depending on your sweet tea taste]. Pour into pitcher and add another 3 to 4 cups of water. Fill your glass with ice cubes, lemon, and a sprig of mint. ENJOY! Better yet, put on a tea party for a few friends......that is the Best southern style! Friends instantly appreciate a cheerful Southern hostess! I hope your day is truly blessed and you find a gracious way to stay cool in the hot summer sun!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Beautiful Gate.....

I love reading God's words from the Bible and I am always blessed when I do. My spirit is changed, I repent. I repent about things I had forgotten about. It's refreshing to be healed and cleansed for repentance restores our broken fellowship with God. It's turning from our own way and following HIS. It is healing and powerful to be whole and cleansed. In Acts 3 there is a true story of a place called the BEAUTIFUL GATE where people would enter the Temple at the hour of prayer. Beggars would be carried or laid there who were in need, begging for alms. [money or food] Can you imagine being so broken or in such need? I can. We have all been broken before over something. Perhaps it is something we did to another person or something another did to us. What matters though is that pain, of any kind, emotional, physical, or spiritual, can make of us a beggar.

God has an amazing merciful heart toward beggars because He wants to act on their behalf. As the story unfolds in the passage, Peter and John were entering the temple by The Beautiful Gate and a man was sitting there who had been lame from his Mother's womb. He laid daily at this gate called Beautiful to ask alms from those who entered the temple. Peter and John, strong men of faith, asked him to look at them and then Peter said something boldly that changed this beggar's life. "Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: in the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk". Peter took him by the hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. He was leaping, singing, and praising God. This man who had sat at that Beautiful Gate could have never walked if John and Peter had not shared the POWER of Christ with the man. These ordinary men, who the Bible describes as uneducated and untrained simply shared what they knew to be true from their time spent with The Lord. People marveled at the Beautiful Gate most likely for sometime. Times of refreshment come from the presence of the Lord! These men of faith had brought a fresh touch. It was beautiful what they did.

 If someone comes to your beautiful door or your beautiful gate ailing in their hour of need, may I encourage you to share what you have and the love and compassion of Jesus. Both of you will change and rejoice! It's a promise! Be blessed my friend this June day!!!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

England's Celebration of Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee.....

Buckingham Palace

Kensington Palace
Gardens around Kensington Palace
The Tower of London
Tower Bridge
Completed in 1894, is hailed as one of the great engineering marvels of its age.
The bridge consists of two towers tied together at the upper level by means of two horizontal walkways.  The River Thames flows under this beautiful bridge.
Gardens around Buckingham Palace
Celebrations Abound for London
Westminister Abbey
Founded 960

Westminister Abbey is one of the world's greatest churches.
"The coronation of Kings and Queens has taken place here since 1066, and many of the nations Kings and Queens are buried in the Abbey." ( from The Abbey site)

The greatest day of Queen Elizabeth's life is about to begin as the celebrations go on all weekend and Monday and Tuesday as her 60 year reign on the throne of Great Britian is celebrated highlighting her Diamond Jubilee!  At just 25 years of age, she became the Queen on the British Throne.  It is quite a thrilling celebration in London and all over England and even around the world as we watch the celebrations here in America!   She has ruled as Queen in grandeur and majesty!  For Americans we cannot quite understand the pagentry, but if we were British, it would be a part of our lives. Our son in law, Phil, is British and I have enjoyed learning first hand from him what it means to be born British and embrace the Queen.  It is a jubliant time for all and a time for celebration of Queen Elizabeth's II coronation 60 years ago! 

 Last year as I visited Kara and Phil in England, I enjoyed the visit to Buckingham Palace and many other places all over England so I can just imagine the excitement there this weekend! I hope they all have a special weekend! 

A few facts about Queen Elizabeth:

Queen Elizabeth II has ruled Great Britain for 60 years, longer than any other monarch, except Queen Victoria, who at age 77 ruled for 63 years.

She speaks fluent French.  (no wonder I like her)

During her reign, the Queen has received 3.5 million letter of correspondence.

Her Royal Majesty is worth an estimated $525 million. She earns about $50 million annually.

Queen Elizabeth II has met 6 Catholic Popes, 12 United States Presidents, and 12 Prime Ministers have served under her reign.

The Imperial State Crown that Queen Elizabeth II wears at the state opening of Parliament includes 2,868 diamonds.  The St. Edwards crown she wore at her coronation in 1953 weighs 4.9 lbs.

She is quiet a lady and I celebrate her today!
May we all enjoy a cup of tea!

My girl Kara enjoying her tea in England!
  All photos above were taken by me on my visit to England while visiting Kara and Phil.