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Wednesday 30 September 2015

Clerk in Holy Orders

For twenty five years now I have been a Clerk in Holy Orders.  What an old fashioned ring that has but it is the legal description of my profession.  For on this day in 1990 I knelt before the Bishop in Leicester Cathedral for him to lay his hands on my head and pray that the Holy Spirit would equip me for the work of a Deacon in the Church of God.
Leicester Cathedral

It had been a long journey and I had a lot of rejections on the way but I was sure that God was calling me and eventually I was accepted.  By that time I had already been a Lay Worker for nearly three years and the lovely parishioners had passed a resolution asking the Bishop to ordain me.  What a wonderful affirmation!  I was (and am) truly blessed.

Nearly four years later I was ordained priest but I will always be a deacon too.  Deacons are literally servants and their can be no higher calling than to follow the Master who came not to be served but to serve.

I'm not going to pretend that these twenty five years have been years of uniform delight.  At times they have been very tough but I have never had any doubt that God has called me to this work.  

When I was preparing for ordination a verse of a hymn was with me constantly.  I share it with you.

Jesus, confirm my heart's desire
to work and speak and think for thee.
Still let me guard the holy fire
and still stir up thy gift in me.

Friday 25 September 2015

He's been!

Thirteen weeks today "He's Been! might refer to a gent with a white beard and a red costume, but today at Frugal Follies, the “he” in question, is the great Jack.

Whenever he comes it feels as though a whirlwind has parked in my little bungalow.  Today he was very busy.
A heart shaped potato makes a change from strangely shaped carrots

He painted the swing with another coat of preservative.

He planted some leeks
He outed the runner beans, the sweet peas and quite a few other things
He pruned the lavender.  
He painted a door
He dug the remaining potatoes.
He sorted out the veg patch.
He weeded quite a lot of garden.
Sabbath joy

We decided what he would do when he comes while I am away.

He drank quite a lot of tea.

And he ate a hook-free dinner including a very special potato.

And I am shattered.

But I have these last few sweet peas to enjoy on my Sabbath.

Friday 18 September 2015

OK. That's the third time this month.

Yup, I've been to Mandy'd today.  We made four cards but I've sent one already.  Sorry about that.

Anyway, here's the remaining three.  


And as well as making four cards I had a lovely morning with four other ladies.  

Thursday 17 September 2015

Quickest of quick updates

Just to let you know that I saw the eye consultant who prescribed medication and the pain is now gone!  Monday night I could have torn my head off but life is wonderful again.  My vision is slightly blurred still but I go to the hospital again next week.

Thank you for your concern.

Monday 14 September 2015

More cards

I've been getting out very little these last few days as my eye continues to be very uncomfortable.  I'm hoping to see a specialist tomorrow so I should get sorted out a bit then.

However, I haven't been totally idle.  I've been to Mandy's!  And here are the results.  
A simple card

Faux embossing

Cascade card
embossing and die-cutting
 As you can see it was a blue-and-white Christmas theme.  I really like all four but I think my favourite is the one I have called "Embossing and die-cutting" although it was not without difficulties.  I think I may try one or two more additions to the cascade card.
Once again thank you Mandy

Thursday 10 September 2015

Thursday is wonderful

I am a bit pathetic this week but don't worry - I don't need sympathy! 

 I've had a slightly gritty sensation in my eye on and off for several weeks and on Monday my eye became rather bloodshot and watery.  I've been to the doc who assures me that there is nothing seriously wrong so I'm just being quiet at home.

Except on Tuesday.  Tuesday I squawked.  The reason - I was preparing an avocado and I managed to stab myself in the hand.  The blood flow was quite startling!  Anyway I've sorted that and now have a suitably dramatic dressing on my left hand.

So with only one good hand and poor eyesight I was a bit limited as to how to spend my time.  One of my great pleasures in life is audiobooks.  A good book is great.  A good book read by an excellent reader is my idea of bliss.  So Wednesday I settled down to listen to a whodunit.  What could possibly go wrong?

The fire alarm went off.  After ten seconds it stopped.  Two minutes later I got a repeat performance.  Then two minutes later the same thing happened.  After the twelfth repetition I rang for help which arrived a couple of hours later.

So today is truly wonderful.  The house is quiet.  My hand no longer hurts.  My vision is still a bit iffy but my eyes don't hurt.  And I can sit and listen to my book.   Who knew silence could be so wonderful.

Wednesday 9 September 2015

Thank You, Ma'am.

I’m not going to press the publish button in this until after 5.30 pm because at that time Elizabeth 11 will become our longest reigning monarch.

Understandably she doesn’t want to celebrate – her long reign is partly down to the fact that her father died so young.  She would also effectively be celebrating the death of her great great grandmother, Queen Victoria.

But I think many of us want to say our own quiet "thank yous” to Her Majesty.  She’s been our oldest ever monarch for quite a while but to see her around you’d never guess it.  Her schedule isn’t as busy as it was but it’s still incredible for a lady of 89.  Today she’s out opening a new railway and doubtless receiving the cheers and thanks of many of her people.

I was born in her father’s reign but she became Queen when I was 15 weeks old.  She has been the stability of my country all my life.  On Sunday I shall use this prayer. 

Almighty God, who hast set our gracious sovereign Queen Elizabeth upon the throne of this realm and given her to surpass all others in the years of her reign: receive our heartfelt thanks for her service to her people, confirm and encourage her in the continuance of the same, and keep her in thy heavenly wisdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who took the form of a servant for our sake and reigneth now in glory with theee and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end.  Amen

Monday 7 September 2015

75 years ago today

I know that many people will be remembering the start of the Blitz today and I too will be thinking about that.

But I shall also be thinking about another event which happened seventy five years ago.  On 7th September 1940 my parents were married.  

They were married just a few miles from where I live now, and the wedding breakfast was at my grandparents farm. My great uncle officiated (he was rector of a nearby parish) and it was by all accounts, a wonderful celebration.  He was obviously a modern sort of vicar as he wouldn't allow my mum to promise to obey her husband which was just as well!

My parents met when my mother gave my father a boiled sweet at the end of a football match in which her brother was on the same team.  He always had a bag of boiled sweets with him when I was a child but I didn't know the reason until after he died.  

Their marriage was truly "till death do us part" which sadly came just over 55 years later when my father died in 1995.  

Friday 4 September 2015

Bringing jokiness and leaving joy

He's been!  Not Santa - Jack!  He had hoped to come earlier in the week but today was the day.

My (solar powered) nodding flower died recently after over two years faithful nodding so Jack decided to remedy the situation.  He brought me not just a nodding flower but also a joggling monkey.

He worked like a Trojan tidying the garden.  We had the first of the cauliflowers, this blushing beauty. The outside of the curd was a lovely pinky shade which disappeared on cooking.  I've never had much success with caulis but I've got three this year. I shall pick the other two very soon as they may bolt.

We some lovely runner beans and potatoes from the garden with faggots for lunch.  I've got loads of beans to freeze as well.  I'm eating cherry tomatoes like sweets!
Sweet peas
Asters and nicotiana
And before he left Jack picked these two lovely bunches of flowers.

Truly he brought jokiness and he left joy.  

Tuesday 1 September 2015

You'll never guess where I've been today!

Notelet with dragonflies
I had an e mail from Mandy today saying that owing to illness  there was a spare place at her crafting group this afternoon.  Hands up who was surprised that I said yes.

Sympathy card
Not exactly a forest of hands then.  I think you are getting to know me rather well.  I hadn't been out since Sunday and i have no other planned outings this week so off I went.

And this is what I brought back.

Pretty card - but a brute to make!
The first is a simple notelet with dragonflies with ferns in the background.  Before stamping the ferns on the card I stamped on to a piece of paper so that when I applied the stamp to the actual card it would look faint.  
My favourite

 Next is the sympathy card. This is quite straightforward and is just layers of various paper and card with the poppy stamp as its main feature.

 I struggled with the third one but it is rather pretty with its lacy trim.

And the fourth is my favourite. 

Well, whatever I was going to do today can be done tomorrow.