This blog was formerly titled "Sentiments and Scrapbooks."

Monday, January 16, 2017

He Can Create a Clean Heart {Bible Art Journaling}

Bible Art Ps 51-10

Create a clean heart in me, Oh God, and renew a right spirit within me. – Ps 51:10

My favorite thing about this verse, a favorite of mine since I was a young girl, is the miraculous fact that I have a Heavenly Father who can actually DO this—He, and only He, can create a clean heart in me. And He wants me to ask Him to do just that. So, I’m asking.

#BibleArtJournalingChallenge #BibleArt #BibleMarginalia #IllustratedFaith #ScriptureArt #FaithArt #PrismacolorPremiere #CreateaCleanHeart #Psalms

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Recreational Technology {My Philosophy}

Every January I re-organize, clean up files, back up files, and generally update my organizational system. The process involves looking at documents I may not have seen for years. I just came across something I wrote in 2010. I believe it may still apply, for consideration by me, at least. My words from that year:

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Recreational Technology:
How much is too much?

Recreational Technology defined: the use of technology for fun, relaxation, and/or virtual socialization.

Examples:
-Video games (“gaming”) or other computer games—alone, or with virtual community
-Online social communities such as facebook, twitter, instagram, pinterest

Having lived for a large number of years (smile), I have had opportunity to see some very dramatic changes in the “culture” in which I live. While many changes have been positive, even awesome and wonderful, there are some developments that I fear carry the potential of having more negative long-term effects than we might realize. One of those areas of “concern” is that of the rapid growth of recreational technology.

Now, I got my first computer in 1985. I can still remember taking the computer out of the box, trying to make sense of the manual, partitioning the hard drive, and installing DOS. I taught myself how to do simple programming and had an organizational system on my computer before Windows. In fact, I didn’t like Windows at first because it took some of the control of my computer away from me. I’m certainly not anti-technology. I just wonder if maybe the “use” of technology for recreation and socialization would best be experienced “in moderation.”

I propose these questions for your consideration, if you are seeking to determine how much is too much, for you personally:

*Are your relationships suffering?
*Are you lacking in adequate rest?
*Are you rationalizing your time at these activities (such as “If I weren’t doing this, I would be watching television.” In reality, if it replaces two hours of TV, would those two hours have been spent watching TV WITH family)?
*Are you spending more time with virtual “friends” or online friends than with family?
*Are you looking forward to that activity more than family time/activities?
*Are you uneasy and unsettled during “normal,” real-life people-to-people conversation, and feel in the back of your mind that you can’t wait to get back to your “real” world (computer, tablet, phone, etc.)?
*Are you sharing with the world INSTEAD of with family (unless they happen to be a part of your virtual community)?
*Are your online friends the first to know about meaningful events in your life (maybe even leaving out someone who has the audacity NOT to be on social media)?
*Are your “postings” (blogs, facebook status, etc.) taking the place of meaningful real conversations with real people?
*Are those activities affecting, or maybe even, controlling:
Your mood?
Your priorities?
Your outlook on life?
Your schedule?

Not looking for a score here. There are not a certain number of the above questions that will give you a definitive answer about how much is too much. It’s an individual answer, but the question is one that, for me, deserves consideration.

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#recreationaltechnology #mypersonalopinion #mylifephilosophy #toomuchtechnology #realrelationships

Monday, January 9, 2017

New Bible Study: “Walking in Wisdom” from LGG

Walking in Wisdom books

Looking forward to beginning my next Bible Study, starting next Monday. My first study with Love God Greatly was the Advent study, “God With Us.” I am impressed with the Love God Greatly belief statement, and I highly recommend their studies.

For each of their studies, there is an option to purchase a paperback book from Amazon (this one was $10.79, free shipping from Amazon Prime), or to download the study materials directly from their web site. I chose to purchase the book, as I think it might even be less expensive than printing out the 115 pages at home. Mainly, I like that this organization is not-for-profit, and so my purchase price goes back into the ministry. Their studies are translated and distributed in several languages.

Here is the description of the study from their web site:

“The Book of Proverbs positions us face-to-face with the wise and the fool and the consequences that follow their choices. The text is highly personal, at times uncomfortably transparent, and doesn’t mess around in zeroing in on the world’s greatest temptations that threaten to lead us astray from walking in the wisdom that God intended for us.

This six-week Love God Greatly Online Bible Study on Proverbs points to a topical look at Proverbs and the key themes of wisdom in our speech, our relationships, our work and wealth, and in the face of temptation.

Trust in the Lord instead of your own understanding is where the book of Proverbs ultimately leads us. God is the source of all wisdom, He uses these proverbs to show us the path that leads to wisdom, and He reveals to us the fruit of walking in this great wisdom… so that our trust is ultimately not in our floundering ways, but can be found securely in Him.”

#BibleStudy #LoveGodGreatly #WalkinginWisdom #Proverbs #SOAPMethod

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

ChristmasTime

Had a wonderful and special Christmas with my family. Just edited around 100 pictures…sharing a few here.

Bubble Bread

Bubble Bread-a Christmas morning tradition

Happy to be together again

Red Velvet Cake-another tradition

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FaceTime with our granddaughter Tory in Mexico

My Children

My two…

Snack Buffet

Traditional Holiday Snack Buffet

Mark and Kristy, their son Conner and his wife Caroline (daughter Tory in Mexico)

Son Mark and his wife Kristy

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Grandson Conner and his wife Caroline

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Daughter Sharida and her children Alyssa and Dawson

Our two beautiful children with us

Mamo and Grandad with all our grandchildren except Tory (on mission in Mexico)

The old folks

#Christmas2016

Friday, December 23, 2016

Christmas Vignettes Around My Home

Just little bits and pieces from my home today…

Upper Level…

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On the large tree: If you click to enlarge, you can see the diaper pins, one blue and one pink, from my two children’s diapers—yes we really used them (Pampers had just come into existence, but no way was I going to put paper diapers on my babies)…also the last pacifier (so it would’ve been Sharida’s) and two baby spoons, short one with curved handle was Mark’s, long one was Sharida’s. Tucked way inside by the trunk of the tree is a plastic book and a red firetruck, both from Mark’s first stocking.

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On the tree in the music room, several of these little grand pianos.

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Music Room

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In the music room, ready for singing around the piano, always a part of all our family gatherings.

Lower Level…

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#ChristmasVignettes #HurryChristmas #ReadyforFamily

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Sibling Christmas

This year our annual celebration was hosted at the home of my sister who is married to my husband’s brother (seriously-we have been married 51 years, they have been married 48 years). We were joined by my brother and wife (they live in Illinois).

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Our celebration always includes the reading of the Christmas story from Luke 2 (Daddy always read it until he passed in 1988; since then, my brother reads it). As is our custom, we sing Christmas carols at their relevant places in the story.

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We still draw names and enjoy the gift exchange. I hope we always do this.

We always take “family pictures” by the tree (a tradition in the Wilson family passed down from my Mamo and Grandad Wilson).

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Russell and Barbara Ford

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David and Janene Ford

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Keith and Michele Wilson

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After Mother’s death in 2013, we found our childhood stockings (from grandparents’ Christmases) in Mother’s things. They were handmade by our aunts and Mamo Wilson, and they hung over the fireplace at Mamo and Grandad’s all our growing-up years. Now, we take turns being the Stocking Santa and filling the stockings with nostalgic items like pick-up sticks, paddle ball, jacks, and candy like Bit o’Honey and ribbon candy. And, because our Mamo-and-Grandad stockings always included a tangerine or an orange (in the toe), so do ours!

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We love traditions, as they remind us of the fabric from which we are made, and it gives us reason to celebrate our bond of family love, for which we thank our Heavenly Father.

#SiblingChristmas2016 #FamilyTies #Traditions #VintageStockings

Monday, December 12, 2016

Thankful for Christmas {Gratitude52 Art Journal}

G52Prompt49 The Holidays

The Gratitude52 Journal Prompt #49 is “illustrate your gratitude for the holidays.” I am thankful for Christmas for many reasons. I love the spirit of giving that I see more at this time of year.

I am thankful mostly that Christmas is the celebration of the coming to earth of Jesus, who was born as a baby into this world so that he could live, fully as man, while maintaining his Deity, to die as redemption for the sins of mankind, offering the gift of salvation to all those who will accept the gift of grace, by faith.

(Note: I did not sketch this piece. It is a stamp that I painted with watercolor. I applied a digital border to the photo, using Pxlr Express.)

#Gratitude52Journal #Gratitude52Community #G52Prompt49 #PennyBlackStamp #NeoColorIICrayons

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Thankful for Warmth {Gratitude52 Art Journal}

G52 Prompt 48 Warmth

This is Prompt #48 out of 52 for 2016. Only four more to go!

Yes, I am thankful for warmth. I do think about that every winter. I think maybe that is one of those blessings that I do not often take for granted (there are many that I do, sadly).

A year or so ago, I learned of this happening in some city parks: People tie hand-knit scarves around the trees in the park, and anyone who needs a warm scarf can take one. I love the idea. I did an art piece on this about a year ago, and for this prompt on “Warmth,” I decided to create another one. I sketched with pencil and then painted with acrylic paint.

Interestingly, PRIOR to receiving the prompt from Gratitude52 Community for this week, I was thinking about being thankful for warmth, and a couple of weeks ago, I posted this on our Family Wall. My children/grandchildren were fascinated.

#ThankfulTuesday As the weather really does finally turn wintry, I am thankful for a warm house. I can remember the times when the only warm place in the house was right in front of the gas stove. Felt great while there, but when I ventured away from it, it was SO COLD. We would put our PJ's on top of the stove to warm them up before changing, to give us a little added warmth while we ran to our beds and jumped under the covers. True.

#Gratitude52Journal #Gratitude52Community #G52Prompt48 #ThankfulForWarmth #artjournal #acrylicpaint #SweaterTrees

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

His Name {Bible Art Journaling}

Bible Art Isaiah 9-6

I am currently studying the second week of the advent lessons in “God With Us” from Love God Greatly. This Bible study is well-written, inspirational and affirming. I highly recommend the studies from this ministry. They offer ongoing studies that are free, accessible on their blog and on device apps. This time, I purchased the study journal from Amazon, as I wanted the physical book, although I could have printed it at no cost, from the web site. I also like the fact that this is a non-profit group, so when I purchase the journal from Amazon, the proceeds go directly back into the ministry. They provide translations of the study in several languages, and I love that as well.

God With Us Advent Study

During the first week of the study, I was reminded of the prophecies of the coming of the Messiah. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in the actual “Christmas story,” the telling of the story of Mary and Joseph, the birth of Jesus, the stable, the shepherds, the angels, the wise men—that I forget how important it is to realize that this baby was the fulfillment of prophecies throughout the Old Testament.

The Love God Greatly studies use the SOAP method: Scripture (write it out), Observations from the passage, Applications from the Scripture, and Prayer over what has been learned that day.

Here are some of my SOAP notes for the first week:

God is in control of His creation, and He had a plan from the beginning (Genesis). The penalty for the sin of man was overcome by the plan of redemption, through the Messiah.

From Isaiah 9:6 (my Bible art passage), I observed a royal birth announcement of One who would be the Messiah; He would be a counselor (how awesome is that!); He would BE God; He would be eternal; He would be the definition of peace.

This Messiah, to be born of a virgin, was predicted 700 years before the birth. In my notes, I paired this part of the study with a quote from a sermon by my son, Mark Ford, December 6, 2015: “Who you believe Jesus to be will determine who you are—and it will determine not only your identity, but your eternity.”

Lastly, at the conclusion of the week, attention was drawn to the adjectives in the listing of the names of the coming Messiah.

My thoughts:
Wonderful – He is awe-inspiring.
Mighty – He is all-powerful.
Everlasting – He is eternal.
Prince – He is on the throne.

I love all the Bible passages about the names of Jesus. Simply repeating this verse, “His name shall be called…” gives me a sense of peace and joy.

“For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulders, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” 
– Isaiah 9:6

#Advent2016 #GodWithUs #LoveGodGreatly #Messiah #NamesofJesus #HisNameShallBeCalled #BibleArtJournaling #ScriptureArt #Illustrated Faith

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Blessed Thanksgiving 2016

This year we were blessed to have more of our family with us than usual. Our son and daughter-in-law were here from Washington state, our grandson and his wife from Kansas City, our daughter and her son from southwest Missouri. Our son’s daughter is serving as a missionary in another country; our daughter’s daughter had to work.

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After the company had all departed, we put up our Christmas trees.

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#Thanksgiving2016 #familytimeisthebesttime #soveryblessed