It has been absolutely ghastly here this week. Pouring down torrential rains for 48 hours straight. Flooding damage all around us from the rivers and streams crisscrossing the area in and around the Saucon Valley here in the eastern part of PA.  Mother nature didn't give us all she had though because there was no wind. I was so afraid that we would have more uprooted trees to add to the collective damage from previous wind and rain onslaughts.  We're making progress in cleaning up the damage from those storms  but it's slow going for Roger working on his own and only when he is in the mood, (wink wink).


First of all, a few pics to show you the sky according to Roger as he walked the dog just as the storm was approaching a couple of days ago. I DO like his sky photos. I think I have mentioned before that he takes only sky photos exclusively! Possibly he is hoping to record a UFO one of these evenings when he and Mysti are out walking but he would never admit to that, of course. Our neighbor raises bamboo and one time there was a section of it smashed down into a circle that did look suspicious. I think a lightning strike would be a better explanation though.

It's a good thing that we had one undamaged Magnolia to photograph that wasn't damaged by the killer temps we had the other week. THAT'S because it's BLOSSOMS hadn't opened yet. The other 3 were turned from pretty to ugly overnight. So, we have gone from the yellows of early Spring into our pink and white phase. Breath taking at times when I go outside to walk the dogs around the house. It's Lucy's time of the day to run and jump and be a happy little dog bouncing here and there. So funny to watch her exuberance!  

So, what have I been doing since we last visited? Well, you are going to think me a bit eccentric maybe when I say....pen paling! It was brought to my attention through the Facebook community that there are quite a few facebooker's that like to write snail mail letters back and forth to each other. I expressed an interest and before you could say "Geronimo" I had 10 lovely penpals! From.All.Over.The. World! Fascinating. Except, even though I type my letters on the computer, it can be very  time consuming, depending on how verbose I am once I get going, haha. I do like a good chinwag even if it's in a letter.


"A Mandala is primarily used as a form of meditation to gain Knowledge from within."

Aside from my new hobby I have been working on HOOKY projects. I love the happy colors in the cushion that I made. I have 3 hooky projects still uncompleted but... I finished my Mandala and published it to my CROCHET IS CHEAPER THAN THERAPY group. You might wonder what a Mandala is? Spiritualism might come to the mind of those who have studied Eastern religions. To me it is much more simplistic. I crocheted a circle using colors to symbolize how I was feeling at the time. I had a conflict within me that was weighing heavy on my mind. I love to take up my hook and as I am hooking I think and, in this case, meditate. It was very cathartic.
  As I said, my first  Mandala is very simple. I have since seen a design that is more complicated that I would like to do the next time I feel a need to communicate and meditate using my hands, a crochet hook and different colors of yarn. For instance, in this first Mandala I was upset over the continuing deterioration of my daughter's health. She has been fighting advanced Sarcoidosis of the lungs for three years now. So, I sat down one day and took up my hook and started to crochet a circle. I STARTED OUT with the color red to represent God and his strength and compassion. Next came pink to signify his love for me and my daughter as His Child. Purple meant that I needed his guidance in my life. I needed a sense of direction.  Orange is inner searching to find and rid my mind, my spirit, and my heart of any "junk" that might stand in the way of what I was seeking from God. Yellow represented the wisdom that I needed so desperately at the time. As a mother, and the only parent my children have now since their father died 10 years ago, they still look to me as the spiritual leader when it comes to the difficult questions and decisions that we endure and make as a family. I, in turn, look to God for my guidance (when I am not trying to take things into my own hands).  Green is a favorite color of mine and I used it to symbolize the physical healing that I was petitioning of God to heal my daughter of this terrible affliction. I won't go on and on about this with all the other colors I used.   I was crocheting my mandala in a quiet house with no distractions and it was a wonderful way for me to cleanse my mind and just concentrate on what I was doing. Very therapeutic and I must say it did help me tremendously and I will always remember it. You might ask, did it help, did the situation with my daughter change, was she healed?  Well, no, but our timing is not God's timing and the real purpose of the exercise was to help ME get to a point of acceptance. It's hard to let go of our children. We want to fix everything and make it better. But, there are times when we can't do that. It is simply impossible.  
Now, I don't often get all religious and I am not a religious person but I do have faith. And that knowledge that I have it gives me the strength to deal with anything life throws at me.
I will leave you with what's popping up around here. All that rain we had has really made a big difference. So pretty  but there are still spots that are brown and sparse, mainly our grass. It really needs help! You could say it's the pretty, the bad and the ugly. 
At the back of the house is an ugly spot of grass. The fallen trees still waiting to be sawed and stacked somewhere out of sight. But, there is also beauty there.  At the front of the house are beautiful dogwoods but also stumps left over from fallen and uprooted dogwood trees from a bad storm we had. Sadness and hope all around me, sigh.
But THESE are my favorites.
The Japanese Cherry tree that hangs over our back patio. The petals make an awful mess on the patio once they start falling but it is sooo beautiful and smells so good!!

May you have something pretty to gaze at today and may you have peace in your heart.


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