Quiet and common notions...shared here...with you! Of life ~ our hearts and our home.

Friday, December 2, 2016

The Gift of Listening...

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To fully give someone a listening ear is the best thing someone can do for another.  It's not easy to stop and always give someone the full, apt attention they need, or that they're asking for. 

As a mom... this following quote-for-thought has given me pause.

Do you listen to understand?  Or, do you listen to reply?

I can remember my youngest - Jayne - a couple of years ago.  Imagine, the baby, seeking to "be heard" amongst everyone else's chatter and clamoring...
She'd be sitting on my lap and would try to be telling me something... then, because I wasn't listening, she would take her chubby little hands and grab my face - turning my whole head towards her own... so that I would really have to LISTEN to her!!  

I can remember on more than one occasion my own "demand" for a listening ear.  I had a dear friend who would willingly take hours into the night, sometimes, just to listen...to me ramble and pine and dream...
It was a season, for sure.  One that didn't last forever.  And yet, I'm sure that I took way more of her time than necessary.

But, she had a gift.  The gift of listening...
Her friendship was dear.  And, still is.
It's something I'll never forget.  A blessing I'll cherish long into forever!

I do want to be this "gift" to someone else.
Willing and ready to set life aside; to truly listen to someone - with where they're at.  With kind understanding.  Listening with questions that draws them out even more...
Obviously, for this mom, this starts at home!! 

In all of that, though, the above mentioned quote - reminds me of how and where I need or want to grow.  I realize I reply to readily... and am not patiently listening.

I'm so quick to be thinking of a reply - my reply - while someone else is talking - that I really miss what they are saying.  It's humbling to have to go back (within seconds of the conversation) and say, "I'm sorry - what did you just say?"   I've done this on more than one occasion...
I have so much room to grow...

So - this Christmas Season... with this Gift of Listening... 
To master this...what do you say we slow down and really turn our gaze to the one who truly LISTENS!  I know I need His help.

Listen to what the psalmist David says in Psalm 5:1-3...

Give ear to my words, O Lord, 
consider my sighing.
Listen to my cry for help.
my King and my God,
for to you I pray.
In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you 
and wait in expectation.

The Psalms are full of examples of prayer and petition... to the Lord.  Here's another, of David's words, found in 

Psalm 27: 7-9
Hear my voice when I call, O Lord; 
be merciful to me and answer me.
My heart says of you, "Seek his face!"
Your face, Lord, I will seek.
Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger;
you have been my helper.
Do not reject me or forsake me, 
O God my Saviour.

Oh friends...in JESUS, we have the greatest example; the Gift of Listening!!!

Doesn't that give you such peace?

**On a side note...
Have you ever stood outside on a snowy night and truly took in the quiet of the moment.  Snow softly falling.  If you hold your breath, pause.. and truly listen.  I promise, you can almost hear those snowflakes falling...one right after another.

That too is such a gift.  Try it sometime, you'll see... it stills you and all is right with the world!!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Eight Gifts That Do Not Cost You a Cent!!

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Hello Friends... are you ready?  Christmas Time's a Comin'.  The season we all love...of gift-giving, celebration, family and friends and yummy food!  Of course, Jesus is the REAL reason for the season (the Greatest Gift) and I don't say that lightly.
 He is mine for sure...

I got to thinking what this particular season may look like for our little family.  Our kids all know that Christmas will be a little "light" this year, in terms of (tangible) gift-giving, simply due to the fact that we're wanting to buy a house.  It makes it easier to explain all of that, and abide by it- since we're all a part of the impending decision. :)
It also marks one year that our landlord passed away... which adds its own dimension in and of itself.  It's now a season with even more (raw) mixed emotions and change... but God is so good!!

In the past - here on the ole blog - I had a couple of meme's that I would do for and throughout the month of December.  One year was of sharing favorite Yuletide Carols (2013), another was the December Photo Project (2011)...or, of course there were favorite Holiday cookies sprinkled throughout.   Do you remember any of those?  lol..

This year, I thought I would dust off the old keyboard and share my thoughts regarding Eight Gifts that don't cost a thing!!

Not one single cent.

So, over the next couple of weeks - hopefully, I can keep up and get them all in before Christmas - I'll be posting a little more often (smile), as I share these eight different gifts that have made a difference either in my life or that can be given to bless someone else for this Christmas-time of year!!

Do you want to know what these gifts are?

1. The Gift of Listening
2. The Gift of Affection
3. The Gift of Laughter
4. The Gift of a Written Note
5. The Gift of a Compliment
6. The Gift of Encouragement
7. The Gift of Solitude or Time
8. The Gift of a Cheerful Disposition


So, do you think you'll join me - as we reflect on this gift-giving season? ** these may or may not be coming to you in this order...

Perhaps, you can think of a few gifts yourself - that won't be costing you a cent.
I would like to hear your thoughts..

To him that gives generously... He himself will be refreshed.  
~ Proverbs 11: 24-25 (paraphrased)


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

More Each Day!

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I needed this gentle reminder today....

Today you know more than you did at this time yesterday.  
Today you are one day closer to becoming the person you were meant to be.  
Today you have more experience, and more wisdom than you did just one day ago.
So, what's the best thing to do today?  More!

You are more today than you've ever been before.  
What a waste it would be to ignore that!
What a waste it would be not to make full use of it!  
Now that you've become more, it's time to do more.

Right now, you have what it takes to put more effort into your work, more love into your relationships, more discipline into your actions, more passion into your life.
The tools and opportunities available to you have grown.  
So use them to improve your results and make your life grow, too - not next week,
 not in a few days, but right now.

What can you improve just a little bit today?  Those little improvements add up, compounding each on each other until you've soon forged your life into a masterpiece.  
You have more today than ever before - so make more of this day than you've ever done.

Today is a truly golden opportunity
 to let your life shine
 more brightly with each passing moment. 
~ author unknown

Friday, November 18, 2016

{BagsbyBevy} Do I still have it in Me?

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Oh My!!
By the title of this post, you know what's coming.  A long-overdue post regarding BagsbyBevy and if you don't know or remember what that is - it's because, I haven't posted about it in a long, long time or, else, you're very, very new here.   Thanks for coming by, if that is the case!
BagsbyBevy?  So.  It's my etsy shop.
Don't looking for it - right now.  Well, you can... but...
It's "on vacation" - because!!!

I'm heading out to do a Show and Sell (sort of a Christmas/Holiday Sale) with our church.
Which takes place Saturday Morning - ahem!!  Yes, tomorrow morning.  I'm really looking forward to it.  It's been awhile - Ladies Breakfasts and get-togethers are always a good time!!

I just thought, maybe, I'd show you a sneak peek of some new additions...

I promise.
If they don't sell - they'll be added to the shop!!

Do I still have it in me?

I know one thing!!  It did feel good to "get back in the saddle" again.  Sometimes, I do my best work - at last minute and this was the case.   Five of these items were made in the last two days...

You have yourself a wonderful weekend!!!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Changes Marked with Gratitude

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You know how they come up!!  Sometimes too fast, sometimes slow.


Here we are facing some "new" ones, all - in our face - again.
Oh, they've been expected.  It's just that when it's happening - you don't always feel as ready as you'd like to think or hope.

Why do I talk about this so much?

Because, it's where we're at.  The challenge of change.

{I'm so glad my kiddo's got a chance to see the Supermoon of 2016 - this morning!}

However.  Here is what I'm learning - through these changes.

If it doesn't challenge you, it won't change you!!

It's amazing... 
When you choose gratitude in the moments that are hard... then, the changes that come aren't so severe in the making.

Here is what's going on.  My Mother-in-law has found a place to relocate to.. so she is moving from her little apartment, beside us. She is a ball of mixed emotion, and rightly so.  Missing us and yet longing to feel truly settled "one last time" (she swears she's not moving again!).  

The thing is.  We'll be moving, too.  Though we don't know when or where.  We think we'll ride it out until we absolutely have to move... but, the days are ticking down for this.
We've got word - about this land (property), that it will be developed...

and, that too is change.  The kind I don't like.  The process will still take time.  So, a lot of unknowns... for sure!

Back to gratitude.  We're just grateful for God's timing.  That we can trust HIM.  Because, he never changes.   We're grateful we can count on his blessing.  His goodness.  And, he knows...
He knows our need before we even ask.

This is what He says.

"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord,
"Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.
Plans to give you a hope and a future."
~ Jeremiah 29:11

In the meantime, Life goes on.  It must.
But, my challenge is to keep my days focused on HIM.  Being ever thankful... grateful for his blessing that never ends!!

Thank you for your continued love and prayers!!
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