Tuesday, 28 April 2009

More Of My Artwork

While on the subject of my art work around the house, here's a few of a different kind.

Illuminated Lettering on this paper weight

The gold is done with gold leaf

Combination of watercolour and calligraphy

A poem I wrote when my cat died

done in calligraphy and illuminated lettering

An interesting composition of the word PEACE

Calligraphy and illuminated design

A prophetic banner

painted on silk with silk paints for our House of Prayer

A charcoal sketch
Calligraphy was an art form that I really did enjoy - so relaxing, but I did eventually give this up too and passed on all my equipment. One needs a very steady hand for this lettering and as there are so many different alphabets and strokes it is essential to practice every day.
My teacher was a Master Calligrapher who often did work for Buckingham Palace and even at her level of expertise said that she MUST practice every day and that it took about half an hour to get settled and relaxed enough to produce good lettering.
I have too many interests and hobbies for that level of committment so again it was something I enjoyed for a season.

Sunday, 26 April 2009

My Watercolours

Thought I would indulge myself and post some of my recent watercolours. By recent I mean in the last 10 years or so. Just over a year ago I decided to give up painting and gave away all of my equipment. Now before anyone wonders why, I always seem to have seasons for my hobbies and card making took over from my painting. For me painting was time consuming and I did not enjoy it enough to want to give the needed time to it. However I can still enjoy these lasting images that I did produce. Hope you do to and for the professionals out there, I am very much an amateur.

Angles Sur L'anglin in France

The church in Essex where my daughter Janie was married

Entering the Old Town at Leigh-on-Sea, Essex

with some artistic licence thrown in

Leigh-on-Sea from the other side

Sedona, Arizona

copied from one of my son Peter's photos

Lower Slaughter, The Cotswolds

Wendens Ambo, Essex
Interesting history at this link

A Cotswold Scene

Another Cotswold Scene

Danbury Church, Essex

A Poppy Field

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Garden Images Today

I am so enjoying seeing the leaves and blossom appear as the garden takes shape for another year.We have just had a week of beautiful warm weather with the temperature hitting 70f but it is about to change for next week. Not having had the opportunity this week to be out working in the garden as there has been too many other things to do, I am off now to put in a few hours work there. Will be looking after Oliver for 2 days this coming week while Janie recovers from her C-Section and takes care of Rebekah. We are also in the middle of decorating another bedroom. No surprises this time though!! I have also been enjoying using my new electric carpet and upholstery shampooer. So, this is where I am off to now to continue trimming and tidying.

This will probably be my last post featuring knitting. Although I had decided to give knitting up for good, I saw this yarn in Ho*bby*craft and just knew that the colour was right for a blogging friend so took the needles out of retirement to knit a scarf. The second photo is a scarf I knitted for Alan a little while ago but did not post on it.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Blessings in the Post

A lovely surprise in the post today. I won the Giveaway over at Nanna's Reflections through her 'The S G Notebook' blog which can be accessed through the SG link on their sidebar. You will see that SG stands for Speakable Gifts and visiting the blog will explain just how Maxine and Beverly are reaching out to children in order to affect their lives in a Godly way. The giveaway is a very fine junior Scrabble with a two sided games board. I will enjoy playing these games with my grandchildren when the time comes. So thank you Maxine and Beverly.

Isn't she sweet - Rebekah at 3 days old. A very good and contented baby Janie tells me. She has posted a lovely picture of herself with Oliver and new baby sister which will not be on line for long if you want to go over and visit her.

Now to my garden. My Crab apple tree has come into bloom. This is a pretty old tree. It was here when we bought the house 32 years ago and it looked pretty ancient then, but for many years we had masses of blossom and Crab apples which we used to make either Crab apple jelly or Crab apple wine. The wine tasted like a Rose. These days we just enjoy the limited blossom that it produces. We have toyed with the idea of removing it but always end up leaving it for another year.

Seen here with the green and gnarled trunk which looks interesting against the pink

Seen here with a couple of aircraft in the background. If I had a professional wide angled camera you would see that there are 6 aircraft in view. We live under a stacking system as well as different levelled flight paths so when the sky is clear, at certain times of day,I can count numerous planes in the sky.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Double Congratulations to Janie

Thank you so much for all the E-mails and blog comments containing prayers and best wishes. How appreciated they are by both Janie and myself.

Slightly blurred but proud Grandma during my introduction to dear little Rebekah at the hospital
Oliver enjoying his introduction to his new little sister

My first gift - a play mat made by my own hands - I am not a sewer so this is extra special for me

Whereas making cards is one of my hobbies

And now to my second congratulations of the day. As well as being a new Mum Jane is celebrating her 10th wedding anniversary.

Was this really 10 years ago - yes and the same year that we celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Letter to a Daughter

A walk in the park with Jane when Oliver was a baby

Whilst awaiting the birth of our Granddaughter tomorrow, coupled with our daughter’s 10th wedding anniversary on Friday, I got to thinking about the first time Janie left home to go to university almost 20 years ago.

It was a time when both she and I had to step out in faith and trust God in a new situation. Having been offered 3 different degree courses Janie’s acceptance of the course she decided to follow ended up being a last minute decision which meant that there were no campus facilities left, no places left in halls of residence, YMCA fully booked and all approved accommodation taken. It left her renting a room on her own in a strange house with an anorexic landlady some distance from her college.

I cried all the way home when leaving her and the next morning had a desperate phone call from Janie as she felt paralyzed at the thought of having to make her way across a strange town in order to register in college. Having spent time on the phone I felt pressed to write her a letter which I still have a copy of.

Having read a number of blogs where Mum’s are finding themselves in a similar hard place I thought I would reproduce some of that letter here in the hope of encouraging you because almost 20 years later Janie is an independent lady and very successful in her field, in a happy marriage, with a bright adorable son and about to produce a daughter in a few hours.

“I guess that by now you will have taken that step of faith and made your way to college to register. When you phoned it would have been the easiest thing in the world to have gone and picked you up and brought you home but the way for you to grow and know the reality of Christ in your life is to stay and faith it out minute by minute.

I have been so tempted to think that you were in the wrong accommodation, but I know that God does not get things wrong. He always has us in the place that is best for us at any given time and He wants you to grow in Him, grow in faith and face life with all it’s pain head on.

God promised us victory, He promised us abundant life, but He never promised us an easy life. What He did say is ‘My yoke is easy and my burden is light, take my yoke upon you and learn of me’. He does not mean for you to try and do it in your own strength but this is your training ground to learn to trust and rely on Him. Not only are you going to learn to reach your full potential academically; you are also going to learn what it is to reach your full potential in Christ. The Bible tells us that ‘As He is in this world, so are we.’ That is not a light thing. Jesus is going to be the miracle in and through you.

It is not going to be easy. It will be hard initially as you learn to live above those overwhelming feelings that feel as though they are swamping you to death at the moment. They will not swamp you and as you said yourself on the phone, you know that you are not your feelings and it is only the enemy who endeavors to have us believe that we are. As you recognize The Holy Spirit joined to your spirit you can by faith believe that He will get you through. For a long time you have had the faith for this time in your life and now you are going to experience what it means to walk that faith out. That means you will do your part by faithing out at sheer gut level the next step. Don’t concern yourself with how tomorrow is going to be or even tonight, just trust God moment by moment.

I’m walking this out with you too. It means another change and more growing in my life as I learn to let go of my youngest child and let God take you on as He wishes. In my feelings, which also seem overwhelming at times, I want to protect you from the pain involved, but if I did that, I would also be crushing the life out of you. I have done all I know to do to bring you this far, and now God is taking you on to fashion you as He sees fit. He knows what each of us needs to bring us to maturity in Christ, so we have to say that you are in the best possible place right now, even though it does not look like it nor feel it.

Don’t deny your feelings, that’s not healthy either. Feel free to feel them, but then use them as a springboard to faith and take the next step. The reality is that you are complete in Christ and only the enemy would have you see yourself as anything less than that. Gods is working everything together for good in the end.”

Jane stayed and saw it through for her first term and eventually was able to share a house with college friends.

Friday, 10 April 2009

The Passover Seder

On Wednesday evening we had the privilege of taking part in a celebration of Passover. I have in the past enjoyed the Passover Seder on 2 occasions but this time a member of the team at Pilgrims Hall decided to invite a few of us involved with the hall to share in this celebration with her. I think more Christians are becoming aware of the importance of this occasion in Jewish history.

So we arrive in the beautiful oak panelled hall of Pilgrims Hall which includes this beautiful oak staircase.

The Passover Seder is an ancient ceremonial meal which can be traced back to the Exodus from Egypt. The Seder tells the story of the redemption of the people Israel from Egypt and foretells an even greater redemption, of all mankind through the sacrifice of the Messiah, Y'shua, Jesus, our Passover Lamb

Here we have progressed to the ritual hand washing before partaking of the Passover Plate where we find:

Karpas - Parsley, or similar green representing life.

Hagigah - A baked egg, reminiscent of the Free-Will Offering that accompanied the Pascal Offering, and a token of grief for the destruction of the Temple. At the same time a symbol of new life.

Z'roa - The shank-bone of a lamb, to represent the Pascal Offering.

Haroseth - A compsition of apple, almonds, raisins and cinnamon, symbolising the mortar used by the Israelites during the Egyptian bondage.

Hazareth and Maror - the bitter herb (whole and ground) which typifies the bitterness of slavery.

We are now at the point of celebrating the feast which for us includes beautiful roast lamb from our own fields at Pilgrims Hall

Our meal was fairly intimate as there were only 18 of us and much of the ritual(which I have only given a glimpse of here) was interspersed with song and worship.

As Passover symbolises new life, a very significant part of our time together was looking to God to reveal the things that had held us back from being all that we were meant to be in Christ in the past year and trusting Him for newness of life in the coming year.
For new visitors to my blog, Pilgrims Hall is a Christian Conference and Resource Centre that I am involved with and there are many photos and information on previous posts which can be accessed through clicking on Pilgrims Hall on the 'labels' in the right hand sidebar.
Sending Easter Blessings to all who visit.