Friday, November 2, 2018

Welcome November!

last year's pilgrimage of the Pilgrim People to the main floor
Sunrise on November first is always welcomed with a smile in this house. To me the best thing about Halloween is that it comes to an end. 

While I could launch into a sermon of why I dislike that day so much, I'll spare you because with many of you, I'd be preaching to the choir anyway. 

We have run the gamut through the years from the costumes to the parties to church replacement events of the day to stapling gospel tracts to every wrapped piece of candy, to ignoring the doorbell with the lights out, and now to the compromise I've collaged below.

Halloween collage at my house

This year we propped up a pumpkin Welcome sign on the foot ladder, pointed a spotlight on its message, and then stationed ourselves on the porch bench to distribute candy to whoever (or whatever) showed up at our door, no matter how cute or scary. 

Every person has to decide what they should do about Halloween to  maintain a clear conscience with themselves and God. In today's political climate where it seems everybody is mad at everybody about anything they can possibly think of, it seemed best to Beloved and me to just show good will to fellowman (or goblins, as the case may be). Our neighbors may or may not know we are Christ-followers, but at the very least, they get the impression we are a safe place with friendly smiles and good candy. 

We gave out over 100 pieces of chocolate and yes, that included many children who came into our neighborhood from someplace else. Hey, if our place is safer than theirs, then sure, come on!

By 8pm the crowds were thinning and our bowl was nearly empty, so we turned off the lights and went back inside, done for another year.

Those who've been following my blogs over the years know we have an annual habit of parading the Pilgrim People out of their storage boxes and up the stairs from the basement, or down from the upstairs closet (depending where we were living at the time) to station themselves strategically in decorative fashion for the celebration of Thanksgiving. 

Since our house is on the market right now, the seasonal decor will be seriously reduced. I mean, how much sense does it make to unpack decorations while I'm packing everything else? 

Cheery crewel needlework by my mother from the 1970's

Moving on now to a note of success for me today:  I saw my family doctor (who was not available the last time I visited his offices a month ago) and got satisfaction regarding my shoulder pain. 

For those who have not been following this most painful saga of my life, I'll summarize by saying in early September I somehow injured the shoulder that had a replacement implanted nearly ten years ago after a disastrous fall from the kitchen counter. Six weeks ago I was referred to an orthopedic doctor who won't see me until my surgical doctor in Denver sends my medical records. 

In spite of repeated attempts by the local orthopedic practice and myself to obtain those records, alas, I still wait while suffering a great deal of pain.

Today's victory came when my family doctor diagnosed most likely I have "Biceps Tendonitis."  He explained it well after examining me and gave me specific instructions to carry out in addition to what I've already been doing. He is also sending for my records from Denver and set me up for physical therapy. He assured me they can give me some help, even if it's limited, due to not having my shoulder replacement surgical records yet.

THAT IS WHAT I HAVE BEEN HOPING FOR ALL ALONG but apparently I was appealing to the wrong people (appointment receptionists). I am so grateful.

What he said is that since I have no rotator cuff (that was lost when I was injured ten years ago and could not be replaced), my biceps tendons are trying to do the work the rotator cuff would normally do. Over time, this repetition of a task they were not created to do produced this terrible pain. 

Part of the prescription now is to rest that arm, which means I will be seriously restricted as I pack for this move. Oh well. We can deal with that.

some of my quilts on ladders

As we prepare for this move, I decided I wanted one of the ladders displaying my quilts to be painted. Beloved sawed off the top 6 or 8 inches on that ladder because as  you can see,  it is nearly too tall for our ceilings. The ceilings in the next house will not be any higher than these.

The artist in her studio - 'scuse the fluffy hair. (Beloved caught me at an odd angle)
The color is Valspar's Ivory Lace 7003-6 in semi-gloss. I'm just using one coat because I don't like to paint and I'm going for the Shabby Chic look anyway.

Have I told you I'm using more white in the new house? The kitchen cabinets, backsplash, and tile floors will be various shades of white (eggshell, ecru, ivory) for a lighter, airier atmosphere. This one coat of "Ivory Lace" will look good no matter what room this ladder adorns with its quilts.

Cross stitch update: I think since August 1 of this year I have now completed at least ten projects. My latest, as of Thursday night:

destined to be a tree ornament
This candy cane delight is from the book I checked out of the library so many times that I finally bought a used soft cover copy from Amazon. This was a fun project on 14-count Aida. I started with the greens first (there are 3 shades of thread in greens alone), which required some serious concentration on my part, but after that, the stripes were pretty easy and the outlining -- well, that just makes the design to POP! don't you think?

Update on my last blog post, "Business Venture" Revealed (click on the link if you missed it), our builder has, as promised, broken ground on our lot.

preparing the foundation 
We were told they would break ground this week, but during our Monday phone conference with our construction manager, it sounded like they had actually done it the end of last week. Yay! We will be traveling down there soon to see the progress for ourselves. Right now the anticipated move-in date is somewhere in late February to mid-March. Houses built on a cement slab with concrete walls don't take as long to construct.

It's been a good couple of weeks here, and productive on several fronts. We sent off our mail-in ballots early while praying our fellow Americans will vote responsibly. We pray for peace in our nation and protection from those who have misread our constitution and seek to weaken our resolves. 

I urge, then, first of all,
that petitions, prayers, intercession
and thanksgiving be made for all people --
for kings and all those in authority,
that we may live peaceful and quiet lives
in all godliness and holiness.
This is good, and pleases God our Savior,
who wants all people to be saved
and to come to a knowledge of the truth.
I Timothy 2:1-4 NIV


  1. Love your pilgrims! And, so glad you are getting some treatment for your shoulder and it is such a process today to get records or even get appointments. Have a great weekend!

  2. That is a cheerful group of eclectic Pilgrims. I do love Pilgrims. Yes, glad that Halloween is over as well. You did well to take such good care of trick or treaters in your corner. So glad that you were able to see your own doctor and that he will handle getting those records. Good heavens! Everything moves so tediously slow. Can’t slow hou down all the same...especially, if you are painting and doing cross stitch.

  3. Love your Pilgrim tradition. Glad you got into your doctor and got some good counsel. Hard to sit still when you are anticipating a move for sure. Praying as I type that your shoulder will heal and that you will have less pain. Wow! 100 trick or treaters. WE had 0 except our kids drove over with Addy to enjoy some treats. Last year in the Seattle area and "safe neighborhood" we got at least 50. Happy November to you!

  4. You and I are traveling in a similar journey right now...trying to sell our house...and wondering just how much decorating to do. Seeing your pilgrim parade has inspired me to go dig mine out and put them up. I know we will have Thanksgiving dinner here with family (actually the day AFTER Thanksgiving) so, no matter what stage of house selling we are in I should at least decorate some for Thanksgiving. I'm kind of hoping to skip the big Christmas decorations this year, but we shall see. I am excited for you that your new house is underway. I know you will be anxious to watch its progress. I would have a difficult time staying away. I LOVE to watch houses be built. Love that your new house will be light and airy. That will be refreshing and easy to decorate for any season of the year. We don't have any trick or treaters here where we live...too far out in the woods to be safe. So we don't have to do anything. I do enjoy watching the children in their costumes, however, and love the fun side of Halloween. It seems to be a happy time for families with children. We always tried to have some kind of party either at church or bobbing, etc., to make it a safe and fun time...not spooky or dark. Harvest parties, Hobo parties, etc. just good clean fun. Praying for your shoulder to finally heal. Yes, you need to pace yourself as you think about packing, moving, etc. Don't overdo it. Give yourself time to heal. Blessings to you today. Enjoy your fall days!

  5. I am happy to learn you have a diagnosis and can work on getting your shoulder healed. Praise God. Exciting news about the ground-breaking!! I'm glad for the reveal so we can follow along on your journey!! Love & hugs!

  6. Wow. You are a busy gal! Love to see the pilgrim friends making their arrival! Yes, I can sense Thanksgiving in the air already and my husband's Sirius channel has Hallmark playing Christmas music! : )

    Aha! You are going to have your work cut out for you with the new business venture. Oh my... We have a real estate company, Jem's a broker so we too have moved quite a bit. I totally get that. I know it's a fun venture in many ways.

    I'm so very glad to hear you have found a good doctor to help you with your shoulder. It must be miserable waiting around like that for some type of help, it doesn't seem right but maybe a blessing in disguise.

    I know what you mean on Halloween, our family with four daughters, never participated but do like to give candy with little tracts designed for children, one of my married daughters found some tracts about Creation. In the forest here, we don't have trick or treaters hardly ever so I don't worry about it any longer.

    Take care now!

  7. Barbara, always a pleasure to visit here and see what is going on. I can't wait hear more about the building process and the potential move. smiles

  8. So glad you have gotten some answers on your shoulder. Can't wait to see the progress on your new home!

  9. I am glad to hear you got some answers on the shoulder. Hope it continues to get better. I guess moving is something we need to do on all the joints. If we quit moving...not so good results.
    I would pull those little Pilgrims out even earlier. My mom loves to decorate with Thanksgiving stuff. She pulls hers out way earlier. She considers it all fall, so little turkeys have been gracing her home for weeks now:)
    Love the little candy canes. I have been so busy with the baby that I need to get a move on it with my Christmas stitching. I had a few ornaments I wanted to get done. We will see.

  10. Your candy cane stitch is adorable. I am glad they are going to do something for your shoulder and the pain you have been experiencing even minimally while they await your records. Have a fabulous week!

  11. We've done the same with Halloween. This year our church did not do their usual replacement festival and we sat at home with the lights out. :) But my son had that dinosaur costume!

  12. I hope your physical therapy helps your out, Barbara. It is so hard to deal with chronic pain.

    I have a white kitchen and have had it for the past 22 years--absolutely love it. I couldn't go back to dark cabinets again :) Your new house sounds very exciting--can't wait to watch it grow!

    Happy November and I wish you a blessed Thanksgiving!

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  14. Your candy canes are so adorable...what a great stitch. RJ