Friday, July 17, 2020

A Little Stitching, a Crafty Project, and some Hope

I have not stitched nearly as much this week, but I am on #16 of 24 on my Christmas calendar. If I can continue with that pace I should finish them all in July which is my goal.

This is a part of the tablecloth that I am thinking of using to finish these.

I also did a craft project. Now, I am not the most crafty person and it is nowhere near great but it is better than what was it was.

This lampshade was just plain dirty. It has always been a cute lamp which is a small scale match to the larger table lamps in the room. The shade was just the cheapest little thing and was quite frankly yucky. I have tried to clean it but it is a magnet for dirt. I tried to find a new one over a year ago, but to no avail. Kind of a weird size. I would love one of those pleated lamp shades that I have seen for outrageous prices on Etsy, but not for the prices.

I decided I couldn't mess it up anymore than it looked so I went for it. I had the fabric, so I traced out a shade cover and sprayed it with Aleene's Tacky Spray which I also had. I was able to fold down the back seam and then glue it down with Aleene's Tacky Glue and I tried to trim the top and bottom neatly and folded over and glued them down as well. The edges were not finished.

I could have left it alone, but I saw one in a magazine with some cording, so I tried to do some. I really think I could have used a little lighter blue and maybe 4 strands of blue and 2 of the ecru, but you know it was a first time. It looks better than it did and I had all the materials, so I am happy with it.

Last Saturday, Jeff and I got up very early to go with Lindsay and Tucker to the Gulf Breeze zoo. Tyler had to do something else, so we gladly filled in. We are so lucky to have a nice zoo so close to us. It is small but a good one. It was not crowded when we went, but by the time we were leaving, it got VERY hot and the crowds were rolling in, so our decision to get up early fared us well.

Lindsay has always been a zoo lover which is so surprising since she is totally girly girl. Tucker loved it and his mama was as much fun to watch as him. He was not afraid at all of the goats and let them eat right out of his hand. I credit that with constantly feeding dogs.  He was a bit more intimidated by the larger animals AND the train ride.

I have had a rather long week. Mother is doing much better with her shingles so that it is a blessing. Tyler's grandmother passed away so Lindsay and Tyler had to go to Atlanta. I kept Tucker here as she had passed away from Covid. She was 91 and had fallen in her assisted living facility. She never was able to recover. This happened right about the time of the lockdown in March. She was in a rehab facility and came down with pneumonia and then the virus. It was tough on Tyler's mom and her sisters because they couldn't see her until the end. She never really fully understood what was going on. Tough times for sure people. 
I am no spring chicken. I was more than happy to help but keeping one the whole day and night is a lot. I have no idea how so many grandparents are raising their grandkids. 


I really have been digging into the God's Word instead of the world's views. I am not there yet with no fear, but I am here to tell you that it is helping. I am on a mission to stop this craziness of fear. I know better than this fear thing. Yes, I know these times are different, but as a follower of Jesus I should not be acting like the rest of the world.

Once I decided that I would tackle this fear thing head on, I have come across so many interesting reads, so many wonderful verses, and a great sermon by my own pastor this past Sunday that have affirmed that I need to keep up the focus. The Lord met me and has guided and helped so much.

Now, don't think for a second I have it all together. I have my own share of worries for which I will leave mine off because I want to start focusing on hope not worry.

I read a wonderful article, well actually several in the latest issue of Decision Magazine. You can read it online for free. 

I also had decided to do a study of Ephesians which led me to read the section of Acts where Paul was in Ephesus before I tackled Ephesians. A couple of verses really struck me in Chapter 19 especially the latter part of that chapter which  just reminded me trouble and chaos have abounded forever. While it is new to us as blessed Americans the chaos is not new. You can read it if you choose, but the people were in the streets yelling for "two hours." I thought it quite funny that several versions reiterated the two hours and they were quieted by a mayoral figure who told them they would be accused of rioting by the Roman government and that there were proper channels with which to be heard.

The piece of inspiration I am going to share is part of the message from this past Sunday. The Scripture was from Hebrews 11 and 12.

A few notes worth mentioning from the sermon.
He used the analogy of twisting a lens on a camera to focus what is right in front of you to be very clear and yet the entire image especially the background can become blurry. 

We can come so focused on the news of the day and the troubles right in front of us that we don't see what is in the background. We are so focused on what is right in front of us that we can't see God.

However, when we choose to spend time with God we can change that perspective. When we read the Bible, pray, sing praises that lens can give us a different perspective. We begin to see what Jesus has done for us. Now, I am shortening an entire sermon into a view paragraphs, but we see the truth of what He has already done for us. 

The things right in front of us lose focus. We fix our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer or author and the perfecter of our faith.

Faith is trusting the One who is faithful.

Hebrews 12:1-2 says....

Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,  [a]fixing our eyes on Jesus, the [b]author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Then I saw a piece on the new Mars  rover called Perseverance scheduled for launch this month.  I love the name....I want my focus to be on the virtue of persevering with faith.

I am working on trying to keep a positive attitude and stay focused on the Lord. I am fully admitting it has been hard with the news and the worries of the future, but I simply must try and be hopeful. 

Well, that is it for this past week. I have read many things this past week that have inspired me and maybe at some point I can share more. I am in the thick of things too, folks. I have a cousin on death's bed and that is weighing on me, but she is a Christ follower. That is comfort.

Persevering...and trying to do it with hope,


  1. Great post, Sandy! The Christmas stitching is so much fun. I love how your lampshade came out. Beautiful and it now makes a nice little accent piece in the room.

    And your thoughts on hope and perseverance -- so, so good! The camera lens analogy from your pastor's sermon is spot on. And yes, keep on with your mission to stop the craziness of fear! Remember 2 Timothy 1:7. God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind! Truth to cling to in these crazy times!

    1. Definitely the truth we should be clinging too. I have decided I am going to do just that as much as I can. I am immersing myself in those truths.
      The little lampshade did come out good and saved me buying a new one. IF one thing coroanavirus is teaching me is too make do. Now, we did buy a new sofa, but that was kind of a need...well, maybe a need:) I will have it a VERY long time like the previous one.

  2. Hi Sandy: The Twelve Days is really coming along, I am looking forward to seeing them fully finished.
    I think your lamp is lovely, perfect fabric and trim.
    I am so happy to hear your Mother is doing better, I had shingles once for a year it was horrible.
    Tucker is so cute, I was at a zoo last Saturday myself, I love animals.
    Beautiful Faith readings, thank-you for sharing.


    1. The shingles have been so hard on her. I am so happy she is doing better. She has had two rounds of shots to just give her some energy. Thanks for stopping in.

  3. It is always great seeing your work and your Christmas Calendar is coming along nicely! Your lampshade is SO cute!! Good job! Hope. One of my favorite words!!

  4. Wonderful progress on your christmas stitching.
    Have a nice weekend.

  5. Thank you for this very positive post. I love the lampshade! That was a great idea! It really looks nice. Your words of wisdom about hope and not fearing during these turbulent times is very helpful and so needed right now. We need to keep our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. He will not fail us. Thank you for these wonderful reminders.

  6. P.S. Praying for your cousin also. May the Lord comfort her and give her peace. Amen.

    1. Thank you so much. I am not sure exactly just what is wrong with her. Not a good time to be that kind of sick in Florida with no ICU beds available. She is in a small town hospital which at this point may be good. I am praying so.

  7. Sandy, I am sorry to hear of Tyler's grandmother. My thoughts and prayers to you all during this time. I am glad that your Mother is feeling better. It looked like you had a wonderful time at the zoo. The Advent blocks are coming along and each one is darling. Well done the lamp shade; love the fabric you chose along with the cording. Thank you for sharing the words of hope and the reminder to remain focused on the Lord. Have a peaceful weekend!

    1. Thank you, Robin. I am excited about the Christmas stitching. I just hope now I can turn it into something cute. I am not the craftiest but I did like the lamp. And bonus was that it didn't cost a thing.

  8. Your words were just what I needed to read this morning....yes, I’m finding a lil comfort in His words as well. We have to find comfort any place we can find it these days.
    Lamp turned out SO cute!!! Great job

  9. What a great post, Sandy. I'm going to come back and re-read it again because there's so much meat here. It's very good to be reminded of these things... That chaos and confusion (on all sides) isn't a new phenomenon. And for Christians, there is a deeper meaning to be found and that deeper meaning can inform our response if we allow it. Fear is a natural human response to the kinds of things we're seeing and hearing. I'm so glad our God invites us to a place of love and peace and a greater understanding if we turn to Him.

  10. I love the did a great job. I think we should take this time to enjoy our family, spend some more times in solitary pursuits such as Bible Time and thank God for all our blessings. Thanks for the encouragment.

  11. Sandy, Your more crafty than you give yourself credit for!! The lampshade is darling, I love the pretty fabric and the cording adds to the charm. Great progress on your Christmas stitches, I'm sure you will come up with a great idea for them. I think your right about Tucker feeding the goats willingly because he is used to feeding the dogs. I feel for your Mother with shingles, I watched my FIL suffer with them and they are horrible. My condolences for the loss of Tyler's grandmother. How horrible to not have visitors as you lay ill in a hospital room. That would be heartbreaking to me if I had a loved one in that situation. Perseverance and Hope, we certainly need them now.

  12. The lampshade is so cute, Sandy, and the Christmas panels are coming along nicely. You will meet your deadline, I believe in you.

  13. There are just a jumble of things hitting us every day, it seems, with all that is going on. I am seeing the effects of the TV news on my psyche. The disturbance it causes in my spirit is real. I have begun making a concentrated effort every night, just prior to going to bed, to ask the Lord to bless my sleep, to rest my body and restore my spirit, to not allow bad dreams and to please be free to speak to me in my spirit as I sleep. I haven't had any big revelations as a result of that prayer, but the dumb and depressing type of dreams have gone.

    I am sorry Tyler's grandmother passed with hard circumstances. It is good news that your mom is a little better with her shingles. That's just a very hard thing to endure.

    We were up in your part of the state last weekend for the big party (you saw the blog post). I thought about you but knew it would not be a good time to try to schedule a time for us to meet in person. Would love to do that some day, but now is not it with all that's going on in your life and mine.

    I do keep you in my prayers, as well as my other close blogging buddies. Keep the faith, and I know you are. You have encouraged me today with your honest sharing.


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