We all need beauty – so here’s some!
I’ve been in Chicago (Tinley Park, actually) for two weeks with my daughter, Hannah, who’s attending at ballet intensive with Ballet 5:8 (Romans 5:8), and we head home tomorrow. It’s been a marvelous time, truly, but I am ready to go back to my nest.
As to how Zero for Six-ing has worked while traveling, I will begin with my successes. I haven’t watched any non-helpful “entertainment”. Rather, I have seen and heard Creflo Dollar teach powerfully on manipulation (that last night at 2:30 a.m. when I was also privy to a hotel night clerk being read the riot act by an irate guest–don’t be that guest); I have paused to write this post in the middle of an excellent Bill Johnson teaching on the devil’s tactics (see previous post); and past that I’ve just had too much great stuff to do, and important naps to take, to be watching.
But I am doing a sort of watching–I am watching the world around me, noticing the people, praying and praying and praying. It has become not just second nature, but first offensive maneuver. Don’t talk about it, get mad about it, fret and fume and worry about it. Pray. The Word. Now.
Which is why I was up at 2:00. I woke up feeling a heaviness and from an unpleasant dream, and the more conscious I became the more I knew I wasn’t going to put up with it, wasn’t supposed to put up with, don’t have time for the devil’s lies and tricks. They seem so big at 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning.
But they can be vanquished in a matter of moments.
Then there are the negative words, the “non-essential” speaking. I have looked for and found so much to admire and appreciate and enjoy here in Tinley Park, as well as in Orland Park and Frankfort (where Azul Boutique is!) I don’t think I could be negative here if I wanted to. This is the land of Isabella’s, Rocco’s, Ed and Joe’s, Portillo’s, Gatto’s, and did I mention Isabella’s? Isabella’s is magic. It’s in Tinley Park and it’s the place to take those you love. For more love. I figured with a name like “Fat Rosie’s” we should try Mexican food, but we just haven’t gotten past the Italians.
But there is the “non-essential” spending–surely magical Italian restaurants qualify? No. Enjoying the very best of hospitality is essential to the soul, and worth the price. Making memories with a lovely daughter is not even to be considered in terms of dollars. I’ve said all I care to say about this subject, because I have to get it over with and talk about non-essential eating.
Let is suffice to say that when I had a little niggle to forgo the coffee shop this morning and simply make a cuppa tea in the room, I felt quite satisifed with my miniscule victory. Possibly I had one or even two too many sweets these past two weeks (Stan’s Donuts must not be missed, we were told, and it’s true). When in Rome . . . these Chicagoland people know how to cook, and how to enjoy what they’ve cooked and how to share it.
I’m thinking of adding a new Zero For Six category: Expect, Receive, Enjoy, and Give Thanks for the blessings of the Lord!
One of the innumerable blessings of homeschooling is abounding, wonderful, and marvelous wackiness. “You do know your brother is weird, don’t you?” asked my daughter’s friend. A better description is “uniquely quirky”. It was our Creator who decided each and every one of us would be unique in all the history of the world, and in so doing, made it impossible, no matter how hard we try, for any two of us to be alike–unweird. Normal.
Exploring normal. Normal breakfasts, for starters, are too fast and too cruel (like the remarks of that little girl who didn’t take the time to know my son before mis-pronouncing who and what he was). A not so normal breakfast is eggs scrambled by you and/or your children, maybe even from your own chickens, and eaten with homemade blueberry lemon muffins–baked by you and/or your children. Forget the fake OJ. This deserves a spot of tea.
“Normal” ice cream is filled with chemicals, egg substitutes, artificial flavors and colors, fake “milk” and high fructose corn syrup. Oh, and air. And not many nuts. Not so normal ice cream is made at home with such marvels as organic heavy whipping cream and eggs, finely ground vanilla beans and maybe a bit of lavender essential oil–to be had on a Saturday morning, or for brunch, or with a first breakfast of blackberry crumble made with oats, whole grain flours, sea salt, REAL butter, honey, and walnuts.
Or make that a peach crisp with pecans with a purely vanilla ice cream. Chocolate goes well with peanuts and peanut butter topping, or try adding toasted coconut and almonds to your almond flavored dream cream. It’s up to you–you’re unique and you deserve uniqueness, or rather, nuttiness.
This sort of thing will cause your daughter to dance on the dining room chairs and your honey to show you a ballet step you never saw before. Nuts, not normal–both of them. And yay!
In my Zero For Six non-fatiguing foods adventure, it’s not going quite like I planned. I eliminated coffee four days ago, and until today I felt like the living dead. I suppose I was just getting all the poisons out?? Anyway, today the headache is gone and the energy is back! So glad.
Coffee will now be something I have as a very special treat, if at all. I’m so NOT against coffee–it is truly one of God’s greater ideas–but my body is protesting, and I am listening. It’s so tempting to blame everything but the real culprit–that food we love best. Diabetes? Oh, that just fell out of the sky because I was stressed. It had nothing to do with the fact that I put sugar in my coffee, sugar in my tea. I eat sugar at breakfast, lunch, dinner and any opportunity in between. And so it goes.
“I only drink one or two cups of coffee,” a friend said, holding onto her “mug” which was more like a jug. If your cup holds a pint and you drink two of those, let’s just be honest and say we drink a pot of coffee every single morning. If that quart is extra strong, light roast, filled with sugar and fake cream, you aren’t being very nice to yourself. You will, sooner or later, end up with a fatigue issue.
May I suggest that it’s time for a spot of tea?
This is another example of how good habits overlap, or sustain each other. In choosing tea instead of coffee, I am eliminating a substantial amount of money spent on the very best coffee (must be brewed in my French Press), as well as the only thing truly suitable for such coffee–organic heavy whipping cream (the non-organic has carageenan and it makes my joints hurt). Tea, on the other hand can be bought in bulk for pennies a cup, and it is perfectly fine as it is. Just a beautiful color steaming in a pretty cup.
And since it’s summer, it’s the pefect time to try iced teas such as blackberry sage black, ginger peach herbal, or just plain Lipton sun tea. Pure refreshment, and with a lemon or lime wedge on your iced glass, quite a treat.
In the previous post, “Dastardly Division” I mistakenly wrote that the Wyoming Impeach Liz Cheney rally was in Colorado. Very sorry about that!
That was the response of the beautiful and unmasked woman I talked to today at Scheel’s. And I could so relate. I’ll return to this story, but first let’s talk about getting yelled at.
It was yesterday and along with a friend in a local grocery store, I was maskless. I was picking out mushrooms when I heard someone say, “Thank you, Ladies.” She was thanking us for joining her in resisting the evil, unlawful, useless, stupid, unhealthy, devisive edict (not a law) to wear masks in Colorado.
Now, before I go on with getting yelled at, let me give you some background. I had discussed my reasons for wearing masks in small businesses, with my friend, who never, no not ever, wears a mask. I explained to her that I know of busybodies who call the health department, whose little minions then come and exercise their newfound power by threatening small business owners over not policing their stores.
Since small businesses are falling like rain in our state (this before a possible Biden Admin $15.00 minimum wage, which will be, according the those I’ve talked to, the end) I don’t want to add to their problems, and therefore I wear the stupid, useless, stifling, germ-filled, unhealthy, unlawful, and did I mention stupid and useless masks (if you don’t believe me, stop listening to the establishment media and so some research, such as Dr. Lee Merritt’s findings-see the bottom of this post). My friend was swayed not at all, but did talk to the store owners, saying, “Do you want my business or not? I’ll shop without a mask, or I’ll not shop at all. It’s up to you.” They assured her they wanted her business and so I joined her in, gasp, showing my entire face.
Back to the lady who thanked us for daring to show our faces in public, our buddy-in-bravery, Sherry. We’re having a great time. Sherry explains that her son was just fired for not wearing his mask on a construction site, but that the day was still marvelous as she’d talked a 19-year-old out of an abortion earlier in the day. She talked about how she and her husband left their mega church due to its pitiful and pathetic and faithless reponse to our evil state government’s unlawful edicts, about treating COVID with Ivermectin, about this and that, and so much more.
And then. From across the produce section and over by the deli, we hear a shout, “Put on your masks!” Sherry says, “Are you protecting me with that mask? I Conceal Carry, and I’m protecting you.”
This is not the kind of person who approves of Conceal Carry. This is the type of jello person (and she looks the part) who will hide under the tomatoes and scream and cry and beg and plead with a shooter. And die. My buddy adds her two-cents about the masks being worthless, and our assailant is yet unmoved.
It’s my turn. “We’re not supposed to live in fear,” I call out.
“I’m not afraid,” she yells.
“Yes, you are. We’re commanded by Jesus not to fear.”
Game over. She’s gone.
The moral of this story: Whatever the problem, situation, or conversation–Jesus is the Answer.
Back to Lady Beautiful in Scheels.
I’m standing next to John who is checking out and I notice this marvelous looking young woman on the other side of the checker. She has luxuriant black hair, down to her waist and curly. Her skin is flawless and her make-up perfect. Most of all, her face is compelling–intelligent and lovely. I step around in front of her (I’m maskless, by the way). “Thank you,” I say, “For not wearing your mask.” She looks wary, like she’s waiting for the “punch” line. I smile. “For showing your entire beautiful face.”
She relaxes visibly. “Thank you for not yelling at me.”
Ladies and Gentlemen, if you think that dog-training mask will save you, if it makes you feel (SO FALSELY) safe, then by all means wear it. But remember, if it’s really that almighty and powerful, you don’t need to worry about my not wearing one. Just be glad of my certain and emminent demise.
And just one more thing while we’re at it. Stop with the child abuse of making your kids wear masks. JUST SAY NO!
Dr. Lee Merritt’s Impressive and Astouding Findings
Each time I do a bit of straightening I am amazed anew at what’s right under my nose, what treasures are in my house. In a recent re-rereading of Alexandra Stoddard’s Living a Beautiful Life I was inspired to deal with some of those little things, those seemingly unimportant details, which get let go when life, elections, holidays and worldwide pre-planned panic attacks occur simultaneously.
Renewing a friendship with old fave authors is the very thing when taking to heart God’s admonition, “Let not your heart be troubled.” And if that trusted friend reminds me of an old truth–that the beauty of small things are worth notice and even close attention–it’s off to the races.
Yesterday I cleared my mind as I cleared drawers and closets. I gladdened my heart as I cleaned and organized my pantry. Heeding Alexandra, I made my fridge a joy to behold–everything straight, neat, and beautiful. I even took the eggs out of the big egg flats and put them into a lovely burlap-sided fridge basket. I may have to pause here and go stare into my fridge.
Homemaking is art.
And art, no matter who says otherwise, pays. It pays to discover there are peppercorns in the pantry, when I had decided I must have been mistaken about buying them. It pays to find my tape measure when I’m going through drawers in the utility room (I had decided to buy a new one). There was great joy in my heart when I found missing lingerie (I had decided I must have given this item away, and wondered why) when I cleared and organized my lingerie chest.
And the great joy to be had simply by straightening shoes in the closet and finding the missing mitten (one I personally knitted which therefore has a bit more “personality” than your ordinary mitten) I’ve been searching for and mourning for almost a year–this is good news, Reader. Why isn’t it on national TV? Bev found her mitten!
And in her Lazy Susan what did she find? As always, lids without bottoms and bottoms without lids (I store containers and a few other items in the Lazy Susan cabinet to the right of my kitchen sink). But I also created order out of chaos as I made my kitchen a bit more user-friendly, and a lot more attractive.
And what wondrous joys await me today? Today, or so I say, I am going to clean the “junk drawer.” I can see myself now: throwing this away and that away and this away and that away; putting the stick pins in thier own little slot, the rubber bands all together; and rejoicing in the “finds”, those things that got stuck in the drawer because I didn’t know what else to do with them. But now I will know.
You can say I am easily entertained, and I will agree with you. It’s quite the life skill, and as I said, it’s amazing what you can find. At home. Right under your nose.
Day in and day out I am reading scriptures about praising God, about shouting, singing, going into battle prefaced and protected by songs of praise. Last night as I went to sleep I began singing snatches of a forgotten song, and as it began to come together I sang it over and over, knowing my sleep would be sound, my dreams beautiful.
Phil Driscoll’s New Sound was, I believe, a gift to my heart from the Holy Spirit. There’s a new sound in the earth, there’s a new voice to be heard.
Listen. Be blessed. Praise Him.