Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Surround Yourself With Beauty

I have a theory! Well, anyone who knows me will tell you I always have a theory about something or other. Anyway, the theory is this: If the world was surrounded by beauty (earthly and spiritual) we would act better, be calmer, even, treat each other with more kindness. Kind of like music having charms to soothe the savage beast.

A painting by Kathryn Winter, my mother-in-law.

What if every child walked into a clean, kept yard, then proceeded into a tidy house filled with objects of beauty. Now being a Christian I can't leave out the Holy Spirit, for He is a spirit of beauty and peace. If we fill our homes with God's spirit, and have objects of beauty that's got to have some effect right?

Waiting for my alyssum to grow in around my rocks
 

If I was in a beauty contest (yeah,right!) and they asked me the age old question, "If God granted you one wish what would it be?". I would answer, "A beautiful home for every child, filled with love and laughter, and the spirit of God.

My dianthus are starting to grow around the rocks

You notice I didn't say what size, or mention expensive at all because that is just not important.

I hope you all have sanctuaries. Here's the definition of a sanctuary:
sanc.tu.ar.y
noun
1. a place of refuge or safety.
sentence: "people automatically sought a sanctuary in time of trouble"
 
My geese from England on an Irish Chain quilt I made
 
I hope you all had glorious Easter celebrations. Isn't it wonderful to know our Saviour is risen, and is with us, not in some old musty tomb!
 
What if we all prepare our homes like Jesus is preparing a place for us? A thing of beauty I think!
 
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I  am, there ye may be also. John 14:3
 
Have a wonderful week, and say a little prayer for our country, I think she needs it about now.
 
Blessings, Theresa
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Finding Grace, Trying Craft Fair

I have been so busy these past months getting ready for a Craft Fair in May at my cousin Sweetpea's church. I have a few pics to share with you. I am overjoyed that I can still craft after all these years of collecting supplies and never using them, lol. 

Dishcloths, and Trivets, and Hankie Folios, and Notepads, and Potholders and a Crocheted Marketbag, Oh My!

Mobley is evolving into a comfortable home for my husband and I. The finances are sparse, but the willingness to use what we have is there. God is teaching us so much!

Mary Englebreit Said It Right! It's Good To Be Queen!
God is amazing. His ideas are limitless, His love immense. We saved just the right pieces, and they enhance our home and yard. We still have much work to do on the interior, but cozy and comfortable seem to be our watchwords!

My Dear Mother's Hutch Comes Alive In Mobley's Living Room
Here are some more pictures of my craft fair goodies. I am so happy to be using my hands to craft and my head to create, lol....








We are meeting so many nice people in our little "senior" community. Our lovely neighbors gave us a pink geranium and some fescue sod they had left over from their landscape projects. As I look out my kitchen window at their yard I feel as if I am at the beach in Morro Bay, California. Roses and geraniums abound. Lavender and citrus trees, and a little gravel path ending in a wood landing with rustic wooden steps. I call it my beach path.  They have a lovely fountain on their patio that makes me hunger for the day that ours is ready and working. 

I have so many surprises to share in the coming weeks. I am alive with anticipation. Here's a little picture of my coffee table. It's really not for Easter, as I have my Country Rose's Bunnies out all year long. My husband loves the bunnies, too, but don't tell him I let his secret out.


I hope your day is filled with God's love and warmth. Say a little prayer for our country today if you would.

Wishing you blessings, Theresa





Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Conquering The Kitchen

I was interested in the word "kitchen". So, being me, I googled it. It comes from the Latin "coquere" , which means "to cook". Then it got all mangled and we ended up with the word "kitchen" in English. Well, the Latin word "coquere" is really close to the word "conquer" if you ask me. And that is what we had to do in Mobley. Conquer the Kitchen!

Here are some before and after pictures. Now, remember we are working on a zero budget, and I wouldn't call myself a big d.i.y. girl, rather a Queen of Camouflage.

We spent a total of $300.00 dollars in the kitchen, ahem, the majority of our decorating budget for the entire house. The lion's share went for the range hood and backsplash. The rest went to paint. Paint, I might add, is no longer $6.99 a gallon for the good stuff, lol...Oh yes, $15.00 for cabinet pulls

The old range hood with rotten backsplash removed



New range hood in pretty stainless steel


Old backsplash, yep, linoleum falling off the wall, gross.
 
 
New backsplash, lovely ceiling tin tiles with a quaint fleur-de-lis pattern



The wall phone cord was heavily painted to the wall, yikes.
 
 

Cupboard in front of newly patched and painted wall in soothing white
 
 
Old cupboard in front of bilious yellow wall
 
 
I used a poster to cover the doors, and painted the cupboard white to blend into the new wall to make this little kitchen o' mine look bigger. Plus this cupboard holds most of my small appliances. Woot!
 
We had to move the kitchen cabinet up three inches to accommodate our refrigerator, so I camouflaged it with a big basket (holding cookie cutters and muffin liners) and a lovely old bowl filled with geraniums. It really brightens the kitchen, I love flowers.

I had some pretty Waverly fabric from the 1980's called "Geranium Leaves" (I think), so I sewed up a little 26" doubled sided curtain. This way I get a lot of light in the kitchen, and the neighbor gets to see my lovely fabric. Aren't I nice? Yes, yes, I am.
 

Here is Mr. Mobley, my d.h., preparing the cabinets to be removed. You can't tell but this yellow the kitchen was painted  was hideous, bilious yellow, (ie bile, ick). The original white fridge, and the awful hideous backsplash and filthy range hood that came with Mobley......
 

 
Now it is our neat sweet calming white kitchen, with our lovely new backsplash and range hood. Oh yes, we had to put on new drawer handles to hide the holes in the cabinets where the others had bored through. We renovated, well maybe camouflaged, this kitchen for $300.00 dollars. We used our old appliances. The kitchen cupboard was a piece I earned painting wooden bunny plaques in the 1980's.. Egads! I left a tissue box in the photo, a sign of the weather, lol......


I wish you could all come and see Mobley in person. She is quite a lady, well seasoned, a trifle mature, and full of God's spirit.

Blessings to all, Theresa

 







Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Life Is For Living

We are settling in. Truly, settling in. Mobley is now at the forefront of all our busy industry. We have accomplished much in a short time. However, it was just a short time ago that I heard God whisper.

I never called it a whisper until I started reading "My Heart's Song". If you never met Geneva or read her blog I encourage you to go there. Do not stop, do not pass go, she is worthy of your attention. The address is http://www.my-hearts-song.com/ (click it, lol). When she embarked upon her journey of mobile home makeover/renovation, God had to whisper to her.

My whisper (a big one) came after mom passed away in March. "Life is for living", God said. I pondered this and realized I had put off life. I wanted all the planets aligned before I would act. I dreamed big, and filed those dreams in the big filing system in my head.  I was paralyzed with the "what ifs", and the "I can't's, let's include the "I won'ts", too. Succeeding is truly more terrifying  than doing nothing at all, or doing things but burying them in the ground.

I am taking baby steps, but I am determined not to be a "man" pleaser anymore. If you don't like my blog, you are welcome to leave. If you don't like mobile homes, you are welcome to leave. If my style is not your style, I pretty sure some other blogger has your style down to a tee. It's all about living!

But, if you are prepared to put up with my ramblings, dip your toe in my paint palette, and have some fun, let's go! God, Himself, whispered to me, "LIFE IS FOR LIVING".

 I welcome your comments, and any help or guidance you are prepared to offer.

I have decided to have a little friend help me. Her name is Bitsy. She will pop up in photos and may even host the blog occasionally. She's definitely more fun than I and has retained her childlike spirit. She is likely to belt out a song at any given moment. "The B-I-B-L-E, Oh, that's the book for me", is definitely her favorite song.

Here are some pictures of Bitsy. As usual, she's up to some antics. I think I will start next with some pictures of the kitchen, as that is the heart of the home.


Bitsy is always a little shy at first.

But after she get's to know you,



She will talk and talk and talk, that's our Bitsy.

A big beautiful bunch of bountiful blessings to you, Theresa




Tuesday, October 8, 2013

And Then There Were None....But

I never thought I'd use Mobley's blog for any type of catharsis. But, here I am, writing about another sad occasion in a series of sorrowful events.
 
My mother, best of all mother's, passed away in March of 2013 after 19 days of gut wrenching pain and suffering.
 
 Father decided he would join mother, and made his final journey in August of 2013.
 
I was heart broken, heart stricken, heart sick, and tired of all the seemingly endless suffering. There were bright spots along the way. Bright enough to show us the way, (thank you to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ).
 
One shining ray of light was my Aunt Margaret. Aunt Margaret had four children, and they had nine children, and on and on. Needless to say there are a ton of  Gannons and half Gannons, a close crowd who kept Aunt Margaret young.
 
They dragged her thither and yon. They played cards each Sunday and ate a family meal. They celebrated every holiday with all the accompanying traditions and merriment. They had their share of problems as do all "normal" families, and a giant heaping helping of love to sustain them in hard times.
 
Aunt Margaret was young for her years, and my last connection to mom and dad's generation. We, my family, loved her and teased her mercilessly. She was a good sport, and held her own when it came to verbal sparring.
 
Then we received the news (right after dad passed away). Aunt Margaret had stage 4 lung cancer that had metastasized to her brain and lymph nodes. My cousin, Miss Sweetpea Pittypat, who lives in "Graceland" across the street, was devastated, along with her three siblings and the whole Gannon clan.
 
How could this be? Aunt Margaret was supposed to last. She was more spry, more alive than most 40 year olds. My grandmother lived to 92, and we thought Aunt Margaret would surpass her for sure!
How do you stuff the rest of your life into a prognosis of six short months?
 
How do you tell someone goodbye? Someone who just told her only living brother goodbye? You don't.... You pray, you believe, you encourage, you beg, you plead, and then you look death in the face yet again.
 
I remember the last time I saw Aunt Margaret alive, really alive. I had taken lunch over for Aunt Margaret and Sweetpea Pittypat. They were playing cards in the backyard patio. At one point during the game Aunt Margaret looked up from her cards and said, "I'm gonna beat this." I agreed, "Yes, you are".
 
The next Wednesday, after a call to come, I stood at her bedside as she breathed her last breath. She went in serenity and peace to her new home.

I just want to use this opportunity to say, "You did beat it Aunt Margaret. You beat all the pain and suffering that cancer bestows upon the bearer. You triumphed over that evil disease, I love you!
 
Aunt Margaret passed on September 25, 2013, less than a month after my father, her brother.
And then there were none........but....

But. I love the word "but". It changes the outcome of so many situations.
 
But, as I look upon her family I see Aunt Margaret in so many ways. Her smile, her quick wit, her generosity, her love of life. Yep, Aunt Margaret lives on through children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
 
But, nobody does you quite like you Aunt Margaret.
 
 
Aunt Margaret and Papa in 1935 at ages 3 and 5
Sweet "little rascals"
 
Here is a Scottish blessing for Aunt Margaret, as she was so proud of her Scottish heritage (Clan McClain).

..May the road rise up to meet you.
 May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
 the rains fall soft upon your fields
and until we meet again,
 may God hold you in the palm of His hand.
Blessings, Theresa



Saturday, August 31, 2013

One, Two, Un-Buckle My Shoe

My Father At Graduation 1948
On Saturday August 17th, 2013, two hours into another arduous dialysis run my father called his nurse over and told her to unhook him, he was done.

A new journey had begun. The nurse called me, and I met dad at the rehab facility. "I want to go see Mary", were the first words out of his mouth. He usually calls my mother, "mommy" or "mom". This was serious business, I knew he meant it this time.

My older brother, David, needed a break. Just one weekend to recoup, regroup, caregiving is hard work. If you read the post,"Due To Circumstances Beyond Our Control", you will know why he needed a respite. His lovely wife Sandy, made the weekend special (I heard), yay Sandy.  So, I called my younger brother and let him know what was going on.

My younger brother lives in San Antonio, and is exempt from caregiving. He is not exempt from worrying, fretting, feeling guilt at not being able to be there. He loves our parents with the same ferocity his brother and I do. He consoled me, and started making plans to get here.

Since father had changed his mind many times (living with terminal disease is HARD), I waited until Monday to have the doctor call hospice. My "adopted" sister named Kathy was with me. "When should I have my little brother come out", I asked the doctor. "Ten minutes ago," remarked the doctor. Kathy lost it for a minute, I was strangely calm (this time). The doctor told us, "He will not last three days."

I cannot say enough kind words about "Hoffman Hospice" (click link to see webpage). On Tuesday we met and within hours our father was in the comfort of his own home. Nurses, aides, chaplains, social workers, bathers, you name it, we were treated to first class service. The goal, " Dying with dignity intact." They did a grand job.

It was so very surreal. Dad had a strawberry milkshake, (thanks Kathy). We played Zonk (a dice game). People came, people went, days passed. My Aunt Margaret, his sister came, and he comforted her in his big brother fashion. How sweet it was to see him put his hand on her back and pat it with brotherly affection, their heads close together in quiet conversation. My brothers and I fully expected the old gent to get up and say, "I was just kidding," at one point.

Then the real business of dying began. My father's smile can light up a room, no really, it can. When people would come he would look up in response to their greeting. A smile would radiate from his face and then an "Oh Hi". We don't know if he recognized all (though he did call my sweet sister-in-law Donna, Texas). But he greeted everyone with a smile and a warmth in those big baby blues.

Then all responses stopped. He lay there with his big, arthritis ridden, work worn hands, resting on top of the sheets. We prayed for his final journey to be swift, and yet, he lay there breathing with little shallow breaths. All activity seemed to cease, as we waited with baited breath for him to take his last.

To say that we were all tired is an understatement. We were ready for him to meet mom in heaven, at the same time hoping for the miraculous (but only if he was completely "well", no diabetes, no kidney failure, no congestive heart failure, etc.). We all ask God for a lot, don't we? And usually on our terms. God must shake his head a lot.

At 3:20 A.M., Thursday, August 29th,2013,  David George Sampson took his last breath on earth. I'm sure he was greeted by a multitude of friends, loved ones, and relatives. He hastily flung his hefty crown at our Lord's feet, and started to explore the wonders of heaven. Ever the carpenter, fisherman, and father figure he is walking the streets of gold, and greeting new and old friends. He's with mom at last, never to be parted. We love you, dad. Give mom a kiss for us.

A special thanks going out to my cousin Patsy, and our "adopted" sister Kathy Stephens. You guys are my idols, and thank you for always being there for us. You have helped all along the way even before the final journey began. You are special and loved, and must have huge old crowns waiting in heaven.

Also, thank you to the Lara's, mom and dad's neighbors. You gave them a feeling of security for many, many years. You watched out for them when no one was around. You are our angels unawares.

 Another thanks to our Pastor Ken Wilcox, and his wife Collece. May all your dreams for Sonrise Church of God come true........ I wish you could have known our mom and dad when they labored at the church, dad, even before his salvation....

Soon, I will get back to the business of Mobley. I hope you will follow along.

Blessings, Theresa

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Over The River And Through The Woods...To Compromise We Go!

I am mildly excited. Okay, I am totally nervous. We have finished for now our first room. Is anything ever really done?

I love this cozy room. It brings back memories of times when overnight guests were welcomed with homespun and quilts. A softer, gentler time. I hope the guests who stop over will find it so.

We call this room, "The Lodge Room". It is my husbands room in lieu of a man cave, lol.

I forget sometimes in my little ideal decorating world that there is a husband to consider. He is human and has likes and dislikes, he collects items, and he has a fondness for eagles and flying. Plus, he is a Spartan, harrumph!

 
The airplanes I could work with. But the eagles, now, that was a different subject. I said to my husband, "Husband, could you do without your eagles in our new home?" He said, "Wife, could you do without your craft room?:It was like the hand of God came down and wrote on the wall....

                                                                                                                                                                   There are little red airplanes ready to fly around the room, and framed souvenir programs from the Kern County Airshow. I was raised in Ridgecrest, California by the naval weapons center at China Lake. We got to see the Canadian Snowbirds, a top flight precision airplane drill team and I got to visit my old hometown. We saw the Snowbirds two years in a row.
 

Needless to say we compromised. I shut up and did my best to display his eagles and he gave me a room twice the size for my craft room. Really, he insisted. I love that guy.

 
I had an old bakers rack, voila', an old eagles rack
 
 
Our overnight guests will have a small cozy room to enjoy. I will have a large room with a work table I can walk around, woot!
 
Remember, I warned you about my quilt addiction!

I did not spend a dime on this room. I had everything from the old chippy iron bed, to the quilts. Mike had his eagles and airplane memorabilia. I made the curtains from some green pillow ticking fabric (love it), and the window blessing is a sweet little garland purchased long ago.


A little window blessing ("as long as it doesn't hang over the edges," says he) 
 
 

I love the old fashioned look of ticking. It was too bright outside to show you the true color.
                                                                                                                                                                               The room is pretty masculine, but I added some feminine touches just because. It makes me think of nature and God. God made the cliffs and mountains stark, strong, angular, masculine. Then he proceeded to soften the granite with lacy ferns, and delicate floral coverings. Male and female made He them.
I wish I could have captured the colors. The reds and greens are lovely together!
I know, I know, the curtains low like this are rather more French than English,
but I won't tell if you won't tell! So functional! They provide privacy from the street when the blinds are open. P.S. When my fortune arrives, lol. the first thing to go will be these awful vertical blinds.

Thank you Michael for my huge ol' craft room. This post's for you!

Blessings, Theresa