Friday, January 29, 2010

Weather, Weather

The weather has changed again - that's Oklahoma. We have been told we are under a severe weather situation. So last night, rain was changing to freezing rain (ugh!) which means a possible bad ice storm. Did that in January of 2007, more than enough, no need to repeat.

What would I find when I got up this morning? At 6am the temp at my house was 34-35 degrees. Not bad! There was ice on the trees, but not enough to break a limb, just make them hang down.

Today we should get 2-5 inches of snow. It is just now turning to snow outside my window (11am), so we will see. I really don't mind the snow, just not the ice. But...the streets are basically clear of ice, thanks to the above-freezing weather.

Sunday, we drive over to Tahlequah to preach (about 35 miles). They are forcast to get up to 10 inches. But surely tomorrow the roads will be worked on. Oh, well, we will just start early and be prepared for whatever comes.

It's winter, that's what you get!

Saturday, January 23, 2010


I have great friends! Everybody ought to have some. And my friends just have to know that I love giraffes, and collect them (because I tell them). Some of my great friends have given me giraffes.

Yesterday, I looked out the window to check the mail, and there was an oblong package on the porch. It was from a great friend of mine in North Carolina. When I picked it up, I knew what it was - a giraffe (see the picture above)! I have named this giraffe Sharon. Isn't that a nice name? It fits this giraffe, because the name and the giraffe show such elegance. It really made my day.

The natives of Africa have a belief that God made the giraffe with such a long neck so that he/she could look over the edge of the earth and see where the sun went. This giraffe is doing just that. And I believe that she is also announcing, "Here it comes again!" Sharon gives me hope for the new day.

My shelves are covered with giraffes of all shapes and sizes, from less than a inch to over a foot. Each one is very special, and many of them remind me of my friends who gave them to me. I have 23 giraffes that stand by themselves that are made of wood, brass, leather, ceramic or cloth. One is made from the root of a tree. I have two giraffe clocks, a giraffe candle, a giraffe picture frame, three giraffe pictures (one is a photo I took in South Africa and one is drawn by an artist friend), a giraffe magnet, a giraffe mouse pad, and many giraffe greeting cards. Below are some of my giraffes that share space with my books, and below that a single shelf on the wall that holds some of my friends. I am holding two (my latest one and a tall one made of leather) that stand on a chest of drawers in the corner of my office. I even have a VHS documentary on giraffes that a friend taped and gave to me. (My wife has a giraffe on one of her purses, but I am NOT going to carry that one.)

I hope you enjoy my giraffes, and if you visit me, I will gladly show you around. (Click on the pictures to make them larger, if you wish.)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

A Special Christmas Gift

Christmas has come and gone for another year, but I am still relishing every part of the Christmas of 2009. One of those memories is shown above. Jim and Kari, Olivia and Ava were in Tulsa, but couldn't get down to Muskogee until the day after due to 6.5 inches of snow here, and 8-10 inches in Tulsa. Because of the snow delay, they decided to stay over till Monday, thereby going to church with us!

Of course, our two Christmas packages (see their dresses above) sang us a song or two at church. The people loved it all, and we were beaming. I only wished we could have had our other two grandchildren with us, but scheduling was a mess with weather and other family commitments in Texas.

Also, in church with us that day was my "little" brother. Christmas this year was such a treasure. After about 35 years of the least possible contact because of James' lifestyle choices, we were re-united in '09, just before my mother's passing. James has turned back to the Lord and has changed and is changing his lifestyle. As a boy, he had the most precious personality. Everyone loved him, everyone wanted him around. He was just the best boy ever! Well, what made the 4 days of Christmas so special is that that personality was back. I was so blessed for the restoration. He is all the family I have left; father, mother and brother gone. (Let me say that I do have a sister-in-law who is a treasure, and far from an in-law.) I thank God for James and for the renewal we have experienced together. God is good!

Friday, January 08, 2010

Christmas 2009

We have so much fun decorating our house for Christmas. Judy has something like 8+ huge plastic storage boxes of items, and then there are 5 black bags of wreaths, garland, lights, etc. We don't always use all of it, and generally not all the same items each year. But we just begin the week before Thanksgiving on the outside of the house and work our way into December decorating. Above are pictures of what you would see passing by, and the front porch. (You also get to see inside a little.) This year we added the swagging garland with lights, and a wreath on 3 of the front windows that match the two wreaths on our double front doors.
Then this year, we had an open house for some of our friends. Judy made lots of goodies and munchies, etc. And we just had fun with everyone.
Kari's family was with us the weekend after Christmas, but our special guests for Christmas were Judy's parents and my brother, James. Because of the 6-inch snowfall on Christmas Eve, we were pretty much house bound, but we had fun anyway. James had never had a white Christmas, and certainly had never shoveled snow. Those firsts are behind him now. I would love to show you a picture of James, but I didn't keep my camera handy.
I hope you all had a great Christmas, as well. (I will make sure to keep my camera handy in the days to come.)