Sunday, 23 September 2012

Dance of joy...can you see me? The bathroom is DONE!!! It is so good to be finished, and to be able to enjoy the fruits of our labor!

You may remember that this reno was rather involuntary: a pipe broke in the wall, and the only way to fix it was to tear out the (ugly) tile and wall behind the tub. But since the whole bathroom was nasty, we decided to go for it and do the whole room sooner rather than later.

I will let the pictures speak for themselves. If a picture is worth a thousand words....well, then, this would be a compacted epic. Enjoy the tour!


Lovely not-so-surprising mold behind the wall

Sharpie art

The Story of Love by Nora

Dad, may I help too?

Plumbing upstairs from downstairs

more Sharpie art

How it looked for the summer while we were in Ontario

back from vacation, working together on mudding and taping

balancing act

exciting progress! We are very pleased with our tile selection!

Trim and paint

Craig laughing away and keeping Daddy company

And the reveal! Here is AFTER:

hooray for storage!

My favorite letter and a hydrangea blossom from my garden courtesy of Emmett

The ugly moldy wall now trimmed and more mold in this bathroom!

The very best part for us is that we did 100% of the work! It is so exciting to see this vision come to reality! Thanks to Todd for all his hard's good to be married to a handy perfectionist! And I loved getting my paint and trim groove on...

now for a bath!

Monday, 18 June 2012

of wings and calamities...

Be merciful unto me, O God,
         be merciful unto me:
   for my soul trusteth in thee:
   yea, in the shadow of thy wings
         will I make my refuge,
   until these calamities be overpast.

                               ~ Psalm 57:1

Some thoughts as I've taken great comfort in these words lately:

First, a prayer: mercy. I love that I can pray along with David for mercy. I love that God instructs us how to address him, that he is both the source and the object of our prayer. And that he uses David to reveal that it is not selfish or pathetic or weak of us to seek mercy.

Second, the reason I can make the petition: my soul trusteth in thee. I will look only to God for mercy, because he is the only object worthy of my trust. My only rock. The one who keeps me steadfast. I can only cry out for mercy because I have already hurled my soul headlong, confident of his trustworthiness in catching me.

Third, the place to find mercy: in the shadow of his wings. I love that picture! According to David, the shadow of his wings is the place I MAKE my refuge. It isn't a place I happen upon, or a place I may or may not find. It is the place where I have chosen to let my soul find quiet rest. It is the place where I have firmly planted myself, for the reason of trust and for the purpose of finding mercy. What rest I find in the midst of the storm when I have purposed to hide myself in the shadow of his wings!

Finally, the promise of relief. Someday, these calamities will be overpast. And there is mercy there. And comfort there. And peace HERE. Because in the midst of the calamity he provides shelter, while at the same time promising ultimate deliverance.

What comfort, what peace is found, when we hide ourselves in the shadow of God's wings, knowing that calamity will pass and mercy will prevail.

Friday, 18 May 2012

planting of the LORD...

I have a giant flowering crab tree behind my deck. Most of the year it looks like this:

Not a very good picture, since I had to dig it out of a long-forgotten digital album of random pictures. But you can see why my husband hates it. It is overgrown, thick, unruly, and just plain ugly for at least two seasons.

But in my opinion, all that ugliness is worth it. Because in May of every year, this is what happens:

And if smell-o-vision were available, you'd be able to sit in your living room and drink in the heady fragrance of spring and beauty and promise and sweetness.

This tree reminds me of the work God does in us through Christ. We look in the mirror and see our ugliness, our unrighteousness, our overgrown parts that need pruning. We see twistedness and tangled messes. And we see correctly. Because apart from Christ we are all those things. But in the spring of salvation, God clothes us with the righteousness of Christ, and brings beauty. Not just a little spot of pretty. Not just a dab of color. But he causes our ugliness to burst forth into radiance and sweet smelling incense. He takes the pile of sticks that we have to offer and turns them into flower-laden boughs.

So this tree, this ugly, twisted tree, brings me back to the cross every time I look out my kitchen window. Truly. As I bake bread in autumn, and look at the tree as the crabs are falling off of it and littering my patio, I am reminded that all we have to offer to God is shriveled up pathetic little sour crabs. But I know that

         I am the vine, ye are the branches
He that abideth in me, and I in him, 
                         the same bringeth forth much fruit:
for apart from me ye can do nothing.

~ John 15:5

As I do dishes, and look at that tree in the dead of winter, I am reminded of my sin and its ugliness. But I know, as I look at that twisted mess, that

Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, 
                            and whose hope the LORD is.
                     For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters,
                                 and that spreadeth out her roots by the river,
                                              and shall not see  when heat cometh,
but her leaf shall be green;
                                                and shall not be careful in the year of drought,
                         neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

~ Jeremiah 17:7-8

And now it's here. Beautiful spring. And as my flowering crab bursts into bloom, and fills my kitchen with a pink glow as the light filters through it, I revel in the work that Christ has done on the cross for me. I am so thankful that he is able to

give unto them beauty for ashes,
                           the oil of joy for mourning,
the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
                          that they might be called trees of righteousness,
the planting of the LORD,

~ Isaiah 61:3

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

it's gardening time...

While I have been pondering a really good hasn't come together in my head yet. But it will be awesome when it does!

In the meantime, here's where I've been doing my deep thinking:

Built a new garden...

Mostly to hide the hideous well head awkwardly placed in our yard. 

And utilitarian has become beautiful!

Todd and I hauled the rocks out of the hill next to our property, and I pulled up all the sod and roots, brought in lots of soil, peat moss, and mulch...

Transplanted some hostas from another garden bed, and found those pretty fiddleheads in the forest.

Hens and chicks, freshly watered...

Some blooming heather for some winter and early spring color...

Our "found" art...discovered on a day spent roaming the small towns around Edmonton, AB. It reminded us of home, and now it's at home here in Nova Scotia. Yep, we've been around!

Promise of new growth and years of blooms on my new hydrangea.

There's something about fiddleheads that sings "spring" to me!

Looking forward to seeing the flowers and grasses come up and fill out this quiet place...


that's funny.

who am I kidding? there's no quiet here!

but I can dream.

in my garden.