This is going to be another of those “odds and ends” posts.

  • I tend to take a long time to make most any decision. When it comes to trends or decorating, by the time I decide I like something, then the trend has moved on and I can’t find those items and that color any more. I’ve been wanting to replace my bedspread/quilt, and wanted something in pink and blue. “Shabby chic” probably comes closest to the style I like best, though it doesn’t necessarily have to be in that exact genre. You used to be able to find that kind of thing, sprinkled with pink roses, in almost every store. My family has been asking me what I want for my upcoming birthday, and I thought this might be a good time to ask for a new bedspread or quilt. I’ve been searching online all over the place, and can’t find just what I want. Either the pinks are too peachy or red or too bright, or the designs are too little-girlish, or something. This one from Target has the right colors that I want, but I think I like a more orderly pattern. But I am thinking of going with that because it’s the closest I have found and because I think it is on its way out and I want to get it before it, too, is gone. I like this one, too, though it is a bit too reddish in places. I’ve even thought of maybe trying to venture out and make my own. But besides lamenting the time it would take, I can’t find what I want even in fabrics except on Etsy and Ebay in small pieces that get pretty expensive by the time you add shipping charges and such. Of course I am kicking myself for not getting one when I could find them everywhere.
  • Timothy likes to look at my cookbooks and pulled one out recently that I had forgotten about called Feed Me, I’m Yours by Vicki Lanksy, published in 1974. I had gotten it when my oldest was little, 30 years ago, but don’t remember how much I used it. Mostly it emphasizes creative but simple foods for kids at different stages. The main “enemy” at that time seemed to be refined sugars. It’s mainly recipes or ideas of what to try, but it has a few other tips in it. Mittu was perusing it after Timothy pulled it out and read out loud for us some of the more absurd advice. We were cracking up. One was, “When jam or jelly jars are almost empty, pour in cold milk. Shake and serve as a fruit-flavored drink.” I don’t guess anything is wrong with that, but it doesn’t sound very appetizing to me. Another I found odd was “For diaper rash, use your hair blower to warm a sore bottom.” But the weirdest was, “If your child won’t drink the needed liquids, try putting him/her into a clean tub of water equipped with a straw!” Bleah! I wouldn’t want my child drinking the same water he is sitting in! I did find there is an updated version of this book now: I’d be curious to know how it compares. It’s about 20 pages longer than the one I have.
  • I used to follow a few “homey” blogs, where the blogger just shared things she had done around her home, whether organizing, decorating, sewing, or crafts with an occasional tutorial. I found them inspiring for my own homemaking. Many of them have closed up shop. Some have taken down their blogs completely, others like The Sparrow’s Nest, have thankfully left them up but have not added to them in years. I’ve looked for some new ones, but the newer ones are too “professional.”
  • Speaking of closing up shop, 3 of my good blogs friends and most frequent commenters have closed and have taken or are about to take their blogs down soon. 😦  I am really, really going to miss their blogs.
  • Some weeks ago on a lengthy book review, I mentioned that I was thinking of posting just quick, short ones that didn’t take quite so much time so I could spend more time writing other things. Some of you graciously told me you liked the longer reviews, and I thank you for that. I decided to keep doing what I am doing in writing about books, partly because I am writing down the things I want to remember about them. I don’t know how many times I’ve thought about a book I read before blogging days and wish I had notes somewhere to remind me what it was about and what I thought of it.
  • I follow a couple of multi-author blogs, where a different Christian fiction author will post on different days. I was dismayed recently to see one author’s response to criticism about “PG-13” content in her books. I had, in fact, stopped reading her books over that issue. She had gotten some pretty harsh emails in response to this issue in her latest book. Of course, stating a problem in a harsh and attacking way rarely accomplishes anything except to make the other person feel wounded and defensive and close them off to hearing the issue. We need to “speak the truth in love.” Still, the first response to any criticism should be, “Is this valid? Is this something I should examine and pray over?” I didn’t see anything like that in the post or the comments. Most of the comments were along the line of, “Oh, you poor dear. You’re doing great: just ignore the stupid critics” and a plea for grace for both authors and characters. Though we definitely should extend grace, that doesn’t mean we never gently and kindly point out an area that might be going astray from what would truly honor the Lord. I tried to convey in what I hope was a kind way that I had a problem with that kind of content in books as well, that, yes, characters need to be flawed, but we can go too far in our descriptions, citing the Bible passages about David and Bathsheba and the simple man being tempted in Proverbs 7 as ways to convey exactly what was going on and what the problem was in a way that didn’t arouse the readers to lustful thoughts or pictures in their own minds. But apparently to no avail.
  • It’s hard to believe it’s “back to school” time already and still feels a little odd not to have kids in school any more. One of my favorite times when I was a student was getting supplies and get everything ready for class. One of life’s simple pleasures is a box of new crayons. 🙂 Though we have no students at this time, we’re still affected by the school schedule in living close to two school zones and having to try to remember not to venture that direction at certain times of the day unless we want to sit in our cars for a while. I’ve enjoyed the many “first day of school” pictures on Facebook. Wish I had thought to do that when mine were younger!
  • Though I am not really ready for summer to end, I am looking forward to some cooler weather hopefully in a few weeks.

What are you up to these days?


5 thoughts on “Ramblings

  1. What a fun ramble through your thoughts, Barbara. I do know what you mean about bloggers closing up shop. People blog for a variety of reasons and I’m sorry to see some go, too. When a community’s been built around blogs, it’s hard to replicate it elsewhere.

  2. Oh those excerpts from the book were funny. Though the doctor did give me the same advise for diaper rash when my kids were little because it helps to dry it out, sooths it and it heals quicker apparently. I am so sad about old blogging friends stopping too! Blogging just isn’t what it used to be. Very few of us are just here to connect with someone anymore. I think you stated it perfectly…it’s all just become too “professional”. Hope you find just the perfect bedding!

  3. Well, Barbara – there is so much to comment on here! As far as drinking bath water, I’m with you! No thank you! I like to visit decorating home blogs as well but like you, I don’t enjoy the more professional looking ones. They are very nice but I like the homey-done ones. I personally like your long reviews. It really gives me an idea of what the book is about and if I’d want to read it. Keep it up!! Your quilt is very pretty. Shabby chic is my choice of decor for my bedroom. I roamed EBay for a long time before I found my quilt. I could find nothing in stores around where I live. Have a blessed day.

  4. Oh no — is this a “thing” — many bloggers throwing in the towel? Blogging has changed so much since I began in 2008. I confess that at times I feel like I can’t keep up with so many “professional” blogs, and like you, I really prefer those that often aren’t as “slick.” Oh dear with the comments on the author’s blog. You are so wonderful about speaking the truth in love. It seems that in today’s “my rights” society, most do not want to take the time to reflect on constructive criticism. Online comments can quickly get out of hand and ugly, too. I am glad you entered the fray because I feel sure you were a voice of reason. And like you, I, too, enjoy reviewing books for my own good if for no one else’s!

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