Tuesday, December 25, 2012

my favourite things/ Christmas Past/Christmas present/Christmas future

Christmas past
Christmas present
Christmas future

It looked like white Marzipan icing
tonight under the moonlight
and stars

I turned off the outside lights
I didn't need them
soft shadows melted into the moon's gaze
the touch soft upon the sleeping snowy earth
or at least here sleeping

in South Africa
Shoshanna set up the computer
and with Skype
and early morning
we saw all that Father Christmas
had brought the wee ones
so joyful this game we play each year
around our celebrating Jesus
His birth and coming to set us free

tonight the kiddies are free
not abandoned
not waning in weakness
and despair
laughter filling the air
all the way to Gramma's heart

Jedaiah doing a Mexican Christmas
Bethany doing a Prairie Christmas
Eduardo and I back to the Christmases past
just us and friends along the way

I look forward to Christmas future

I  see Grandkiddies on my knee
and hear their giggles
as we play young

any kind of Christmas

my favourite things

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

my favourite things/ happy celebrations

a birthday
61 years
I have shared almost 40 of them

think of all those cakes
all those friends
all those smiling faces
foods of the Birthday Boy's choosing
phone calls
and all those loves

no matter that the school day was hard
that a cold rattles slightly in the throat
that the age clock clicks forward on

we had all things ready
the choices for "your" day all prepared

your smile grew with each phone call
all that love

your sighs lengthened with each mouthful
of your favourite foods
you had waited all day for this

your heart warmed with each gift you opened
knowing the love

your laughter grew as you scored almost double
in our games

The Lord picked your cards
He knew the cherry on top of a great day
must be placed by Him
how could anyone get all the wild cards and all the Aces
like you

God walks with us
and soon we will celebrate His Birthday

God with us

I have been singing Christmas carols
I have been enjoying every thought
that holds Him captive in my heart
I want to hold on to all He is
God with us
always surprising us
with His goodness

May we be present Him with full and happy hearts
when His day comes

Happy Celebrations
my favourite things

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

my favourite things/ grandkids

not many words today
just the tingle in my heart
the warmth in my song
the thought of grandkids

three in Africa
one in Canada


a heavenly
where neither moth nor rust can ever destroy
we will share forever... forever
Jesus walking the shores of the river of life
all us beloveds

~my children's children
my children
~my Eduardo
and all our every other beloved ones

with Jesus

that is heaven

walking the shores together

Psalm 139:16

my favourite things

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

my favourite things/ our kids

they come and go
these kids of ours

and say
you know mom
you know dad
you know how much we love you?

the empty nest is never really empty

I find in it the days of laughter
and some of tears
and all the fun we've had
and all the prayers we've laid before
His throne room

This empty nest is really
very full
joy overflowing
a new son
grandchildren coming
and all the days shared
that all together

our kids
God's gifts
our favourite things

Sunday, November 11, 2012

my favourite things/ remembrances

a gift
this photo

it came today

a 'lest we forget'

some 'loving memories'

William Barnard... he died young
and left a wife and two wee ones
years later my mom, Marianne Cossette Marchand Fennings died young
and left a husband and two wee ones
and these two families joined

moms and dads give so much to raise a family

soldiers give so much to allow us this freedom

Jesus says If I make you free
you shall be free indeed

Lord keep us in your ways
Lest we forget

my favourite things
In Flanders Fields by John McCrae, May 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

my favourite things/ the return home

I heard the door open
I heard the sighs
and laughter
Eduardo said
maybe cries

the return home
is always sweet

today Stephen came home

he was away making a new home
for his lady
and his baby

fences to put in for horses
house painting
struggling through the winter weather
to make it all just right

he could hardly walk
but said he was just fine
his body worn but his heart burning bright
for his special one
with laughter all day
a brightness around her
a chocolate cake fresh baked
and iced
her heart on her sleeve

no hiding the love these two bear for each other

our own hearts sit warmed
Eduardo and I
wrapped in our own smiles
days of old


return home

our favourite things

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

my favourite things/ outside

I should be on my way

it is my last run of the day
the night hour
the opposite of the morning run
when the sun creeps up and warms the frosty mornings
Autumn set in
preparing the way for winter
the northeast wind cold
but the sun giving hope
like the Son gives hope
on the cold in the heart days
when a warmth is needed on the inside
to set the rumblings aright
and to fix the night of unrest...

He wants His beloved to rest

waking on my bed to pray
and only having groans
I feel so inept
for the not finding of words
and so I start at the beginning
again and again
I name the names
again and again
but for the asking I am unsure

I do not want to guide the hand of God to my will
rather I wish to be guided by the hand of God

so I settle in with my moans and my groans and my thanksgivings and my blessings
and my 'Thou art worthy's
and my 'Your will be done, Lord'
and my praising the One who is able
to do above all that I could think or ask
I think on all that is honourable and lovely
pure and blameless...
and I see Him...
my heart is settled from its rumblings
knowing they were heard and translated
by the Spirit of the Living God
my heart's peace tells me this
His Spirit bearing witness
to His truth
and His love

rest comes

His grace teaches my heart that all will be good
that evil will not always reign
that His kindom will come
and that already a piece of it sits within my very soul
This Christ who lives in me

I must pick myself up
and do this last run of the day
my last milking
the animals already fed
stalls and paddocks cleaned
the hammerings and nailings done for the day
Christ was nailed once to the cross for us
long ago
the work finished
those were His words...

daily as I nail and repair before the winter storms
I remember His final storm
and bearing of my shame

I bear it no more

I remember
the tender One
who asked that this cup may pass Him by
this cup of bearing my shame
but He chose to accept whatever God's will was
and it killed Him

O death where is your sting
HE set the captives free
HE lives
this great I AM
The grave could not hold Him

I am going out now
As I lift my face to the evening sky
It is to behold Him alone
and His glory, this risen One
my heart overflows with Thanksgiving
that He considered us all worthy


I will lift my face to the night sky
and like last night when He pulled the soft haze off the horizon
and opened it up ablazing for me
then set an arc across the heavens with refiner's fire dancing to His song
the Big Dipper resting beneath the streaming brilliance
I will rest beneath this display of His love

Each night I will go out
again and again
to this closet of mine
where I find Him waiting
where I find Him painting His glory
for me to find
to thrill my soul
to set my feet a dancing

I should be on my way
I don't want to keep Him waiting

my favourite things

I will also remember my mom, Jessica Louise, one of my moms, one of the many God sent to love me...
This is her birthday!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

my favourite things/ Birthdays

Bethany's Stephen is celebrated today
a whole 26 years old
Bethany has been 26 since February

Stephen said with a grin
he would always be younger

Bethany has been excited for weeks now
and today with table all set
and gifts wrapped
and flowers and Autumn leaves circling his plate
a hearty breakfast prepared
cake baked
(by the two of them and all the giggles and hugs you could imagine)
and frosted
(whipping cream and icing sugar and cocoa)


What a fun celebration
it was!

for me it is the smiles
and the giving
the sharing
and the knowing
that just maybe they will know they are special
they will know they are loved

a candle of life
blown easily
(no girlfriends)
singing happy birthday
for the second time
because the first time was without the cake

for the van Dijks
a birthday is a wonderful day
a 'we will all do all you want day'
a 'your day'
a 'do all you want day'

Stephen chose to wash the dishes
and I couldn't chase him out
like I could yesterday after a Thanksgiving feast
because like the Prince that he is
this is his day to do what he wants

they are off now
to laugh
and walk
and play
Happy kids...

He is a blessing
this new son

I have two now
lucky mom

blessed of the Lord

my favourite things

Monday, October 1, 2012

my favourite things/ in the waiting

it is good
all this dreaming
and wondering
and hoping
and praying

I could not see the wind tonight
but it let itself be heard
as it rushed Autumny
through the forest
the hush of the day gone
instead my head spinning for the gustings
a warmth caught up in the coming cold
spinning together in a calypso dance
caught up in the excitement
of cherished Autumns past
remembering the waltz of the leaves
as they swoop and fall and swoop again

Sam was curled in a tight ball at the back door
I knew Blue dog would be looking for a sheltered corner near the chickens and goats
Saphira was already counting sheep in her sleep
and Canoe on the leash beside me swaying from side to side as he covered for my aged steps
his youthful gait caught up in the dance of the night

I could not see the Lord tonight
but He let Himself be heard
a still small voice in the storm
caught above the rushing of the leaves
against the night
a still sure voice
reminiscent of other nights
beneath the stars

My dear child
it is all in My hands
completely as it unfolds
it is in My hands
trust Me
all will be well

you cannot see the wind
but It is here

you may not see Me
but I Am here

trust Me

it is good
all this dreaming
and hoping
and praying

and to believe that
God is here
unfolding a prize tapestry
of all life

it is in the waiting

this comfort
this peace

in the waiting

my favourite things


(photo) iron hot shoes made by my Beloved Bethany
.............when we have been tried, we shall come forth as gold

Thursday, September 27, 2012

my favourite things/ harvest friends

harvest friends do call me
out to play I go
with golden sun and fallen leaves
I walk these streets of gold
the owl is loud in the valley
the magpies tease from the trees
the goats are trying out two step
with Blue dog and Sam
in the breeze

the bumble bees harvest their nectar
with sunflowers bold on each stem
they dance among all of this brightness
with humsongs of joy on each tongue
I pick my bouquet in their presence
and never a note do we miss
I  hum right along
I learn each new song
all in praise of God's Son
who's redeemed us

these gifts from above
sent from our Father in love
bring us joy
and His peace
ever gracious is He
to be mindful of me
and of all His creation

the cat's in the cradle
the dogs with the goats
my flowers all trimmed and so pretty
my husband eats corn
from our harvest adorned
by God's kindness
and love never failing
the dogs do laze
in the sun's warm haze
with crab apples laced all around them
rose hips
bouquets all ablaze
with God's 'grace'


harvest friends
my favourite things

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

my favourite things/ the old and familiar

the old and familiar
remained my closest friends today
and tonight as I closed my eyes
and listened
I could hear my heart beat
in my chest
its pulse
set to the music around me

and I wondered ...
does the train always rumble so

I hardly notice it
with my eyes open

so familiar all these games I play
when at home all are settled in cozy
and I take my bucket
and Big dog [Canoe]
and head out
to milk goats
and tonight ...
to play with the new kids
on the block.

I was so proud of Blue today

I knew this morning
as I sent the goats to pasture
and one lingered half field
while the others were forest bound
and leaping
Blue dog trailing behind
that she would be delivered

tonight my Wintergreen
the last of the triplets to give birth
stayed back in the forest with her two
and good dear Blue dog ran me to her

two bucks
still wet and fresh
under the spruce grove
nestled in moss and soft needles
working wobbly legs
up down up down
trying out
tenor voices
mama Wintergreen
proud and
in love
Blue dog proud
to show me
their secret

The rest of the herd following close behind me
baaing loud and celebrating
the last of the birthing
we carried them  young'uns to the barn
and with fresh straw and delicious hay
all around
and a warm lamp
we showed them how to find the first milks
mama calm trusting
with being
in the family way


everyone tucked in
my last round to the chickens to close their door
look for egg gifts
over to scratch
the bunny tender
and whisper soft
I love yous
her fur like angel wisps
beneath my calloused hand

I linger
I have today
I don't want to forget these gifts

I gaze straight up
the milky way thick and dripping fallen stars
God's hand annointing
our newlife

the Big Dipper
sits snug over my grand Cottonwood
I walk carefully in the thick night
remembering each lift and fall of the earth
along my path

I remember how earlier Eduardo thought of trading
our farm for another
it might be better he said
but the price was too high
and I smiled
and cried all in one
to be where all is familiar
where sweet memories sleep
waiting for the morning Son to awaken them

I will go where the Lord leads

for today
in my aging days
I find strength in familiarity
I have watched the same trees grow for thirty two years
I know every wild rose bush
the huckleberry
the chantarelles
the old fir and cottonwoods
the flow of Spring run-off
the sound of the creek
the call of the wild around us
the sun setting and rising
where rain will make her puddles
where the frogs come out to play

people have changed
grown up
moved away
some come back to plant joy
in an old friend's heart
others gone forever

At night when the world around me sleeps
and aloneness is like a warm cloak
it is the familiarity of my Lord's presence that woos me
completes me
as I meet with Him
in this land he has planted me in
He has tilled my soil
thrown on rich manure
and waited
for good soil
and then planted

His seeds are love and peace
and goodwill
compassion and encouragement
strength to be weak
so another may be strong
joy wrapped in serving
laughter wrapped in kindness
gentle perseverance
patient longsuffering
and praise
...and grace

all watered with the river of forgiveness
bittersweet and lovely

I am praying for a bountiful harvest
on the day of His appearing
I want to be a joyous garden

Every year my Bethany
sweet Rose
gifts me with seeds
on Mother's day
and a card to say
"You gave me life
helped me grow
kept me close
then let me go...
You taught me everything I know..."

Those seeds now grace our table and home
and that of many others
flower gifts
full bloom with radiant beauty
they bring sonshine to the hearts of friends

they once were only seeds
and a thought
and a hope

I know my God gives me life
has helped me grow
kept me close
and let me go...
He has taught me everything I know

the old and the familiar
my favourite things

baby goats
a cat named Oliver

my favourite things