Friday, September 6, 2013

Yes, it's 3 in the morning... please pray

There are some things that keep you up thinking... and internet searching... and praying.

There are things that have you on your face... praying.  
This is one of those things.

Please pray for us.

Yet give attention to your servant's prayer and his plea for mercy, O LORD my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day.
1 Kings 8:28

Thursday, September 5, 2013

A Week in Winter

Today, as I was watching my four year old daughter run around in her knickers at my in-laws house, I sat reading Maeve Binchy's last novel, A Week in Winter. I've been reading it solemnly because I feel like there will be a huge void in my life without Ms. Binchy writing ME new novels.

There isn't a time that I haven't walked into a thrift shop and not searched for Maeve's books.  It will be somehow different.  Somehow less exciting.

I ended up buying this book on eBay since it is hard to find.  And I really, really wanted to read it.  So far it's as amazing as any of her other stories have been.

I truly cannot even describe the feelings that Maeve's novels have provided me.  It's like coming home while being as far away from home as you can imagine.  It's like falling in love with people that you've never even met... because they actually only existed in this amazing story teller's mind.  But you can't quite admit to yourself that they aren't real people.  You want them to be real people and real places.  At least I do.

I love imagining the places where she allows us to escape to.  In this novel, she takes us to the Ireland countryside along the western shoreline.  In her book she describes the shoreline to be one of the most beautiful places in the world.  In my mind, I picture Highway 1, just south of Carmel, near Big Sur.

I have this image of a tall, slightly run down stone house where most of the story takes place.  It overlooks the ocean and is cold and unruly.  I checked google images and came up with a few, but nothing as awesome as the image that she allows me in my mind.

 It's like these... but much grander and on a lovely parcel of green overgrown land.

I'm only about a hundred pages in so far, but I feel like I've traveled the little road that leads to Stony Brook and I'm just longing to help spruce up the old stone house and the stone cottage that Rigger and Carmel live in.

But for now, I'll be happy enjoying the gorgeous view of my little cottage here in California.  Or at least its roof.

...... but I miss the anticipation of a new Maeve Binchy book.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

My living room, In Progress!

So I decided to spend my Labor Day cleaning house.  The hubby's truck is in the shop so he had my car for the day (he had to work... on Labor Day!!!).  Not much else to do other than attempt to remedy the situation that has me stuck, right?

So that's just what I did.  My wonderful husband finished fixing a table that had been destined for the dump until he rescued it.  It had a decent size crack that he managed to fix with some wood glue and then he painted it white for me.  It turned out lovely!

That piece of furniture is what motivated me to do some rearranging and cleaning in the living room.  It looked so darn beautiful sitting there in the corner of the room while everything surrounding it looked all shabby (and not in a chic way).

I bought a lovely rug a few months back on Joss & Main which really brings the room together!  I was really hesitant about making the purchase online but I am delighted with the bright green wool rug!  I had sold our "old" rug on Craigslist just in time for this beauty to pop up on the site.

We were also lucky to come across a cute chair and sofa bed set on Craigslist for just $100.  I'm telling you, I love Craigslist!!!

So with a lot of muscle and a bit of elbow grease, I managed to rearrange and tidy up while the hubby was at work.  My daughter motivated me by commenting on how strong I was while I dragged a dresser down 3 small steps (that lead into the bedroom).  

I don't know why I didn't do this sooner!  It's amazing what a huge difference this made.  I still don't have a lot of horizontal surfaces to work with, but just changing the set up of the room made it feel so much more homey!  Our artwork and family photos are still in storage so the walls are still bare.  I don't really want to hang anything until I am more confident in where everything is staying.  In this small house, we won't have the luxury of moving things around so I'm pretty sure that the living room will be staying in this set up.  But who knows.  Once we get the corner bookshelves up, I may end up changing things a bit. This is the corner that is screaming for those bookshelves.

However, I did have my husband hang up the curtain rod and I hung up one of my Grandpa Matsu's wood carved paintings.   Much to my dismay, I'll have to wait to hang the curtains until I have some rings.  Our ceilings are low and taper down to 72" at the wall, so shower curtains ended up being the perfect length.  Of course I wanted them to be cotton so I spent quite a while searching eBay for the perfect panels.  Then I had to wait... and wait for another matching panel to go up for auction at a reasonable price.  The shower curtains have been stored away so I had completely forgotten that they needed rings or hooks to be hung!  Oh well, at least the rod is ready when I am!

But for now, I'm breathing in this room with a sense of relief (and possibly, a bit too much pride).  It's been 4 1/2 years since we've had all of our things out of boxes so we'll have to wait and see if we'll be unpacked before 5 years hits!

But for now, I feel good.  I feel less anxious.  I get anxious when there is clutter and chaos.  I don't feel anxious right now.  Praise God!