Sunday, November 12, 2017

AN AMERICAN THANKSGIVING

Thanksgiving display created by a Russian Evangelical Christian Church in the U.S.



I was taught that the First Thanksgiving to thank God for His provision in America was celebrated by the Pilgrims.  The Native Americans in the area were invited to join them and they did.  Wikipedia says this, "In the United States, the modern Thanksgiving holiday tradition is traced to a sparsely documented 1621 celebration at Plymouth in present-day Massachusetts, and also to a well recorded 1619 event in Virginia. The 1621 Plymouth feast and thanksgiving was prompted by a good harvest."

My family made a big deal of Thanksgiving while I was growing up in Virginia. Because we were at least 3000 miles away from our relatives in Washington State,  Alaska, and California,  we would invite other families who didn't have relatives in the area to join us.  One year we rented a hunting lodge.  Another year we had our meal in the basement recreation room of our house on Belleview Blvd.  I haven't found any pictures of our celebrations in those years but I have found more recent pictures.


1992 Redwood City

1995 Seattle


San Carlos 1996

Califronia 1997


Lake Forest Park 1999
Redmond 2005

Redmond


Chelan

Lynnwood



California 2015

California


Carnation

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  We get to see loved ones, we have good food, we might even sing some hymns (We Gather Together To Ask The Lord's Blessing), and we don't have to shop for presents!

From Wallbuilders:



Wednesday, November 1, 2017

GOOD FOR NOTHING

One of my all time favorite pictures of my kids. Photo by Chris Brown.

Today I'm so thankful to God for the faith He has given my kids, their spouses, and my grandkids.  I'm thankful for my parents who took us to church and modeled in their lives, not always perfectly, being Christ followers.  

My dad, in Alexandria, Va. at Calvary Presbyterian church, taught senior high Sunday school years ago.  He told his students that they should know why they are being good or else they are being good for nothing.  I was saddened to find out that several students have not clung to their Bibles like my dad did, but have been trying to be good for nothing.  One joined the Mormon church, another one put his faith in the Masons, a third has put his faith in politics.  But at least my siblings, and a few others from his classes, have dedicated their lives to seeking after God through faith alone and not of works.

Today I read this blog about our children actually belonging to God and not to ourselves.  I'm also starting a 30 day gratefulness challenge through Revive our Hearts.  If you would like me to e-mail you the link I get each day for this challenge leave a comment on this blog.

May God turn the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous to make ready a people prepared for the Lord, Luke 1:17 b. 

Another favorite.  Photo by Chris Brown.


I get a kick out of this one.  Photo by Chris Brown.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

UPDATE ON MY PHOTOGRAPHY CAREER



Chris and I discovered this display of pumpkins recently at our local grocery store.  We shot this one to add to our portfolio on Shutterstock.


Our most popular photo is of our son's African talking drum.  




Many customers have downloaded this close-up of  a Native American stone.

The next thing we need to do is learn how to put our photos on social media.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

THEY CALL ME BILLY BOB

Davy and Jay in 1954.  I recall telling Jay to comb his hair.

It was two years after Chris and I married that Chris told me that I didn't know why I believed what I believed.  He also said he didn't believe what I believed.  This challenged me.  I began to study the Bible.  My parents bought two Bibles for me.  First I read through a paraphrase of the Bible called "The Living Bible."   Second, I used the New International Version of the Bible to study for my class in Bible Study Fellowship. 

Jay babysitting Davy.

Shortly after that Chris nicknamed me Billy Bob after Billy Graham because I preached so much.  I began to recollect that I had preached to my brothers as well.  

Me babysitting Davy

First I told Jay to comb his hair. Then I told Davy not to kick people in the back of the head when doing headstands in the back seat of the car.  Then there was the time when I was fifteen and Wayne was two.  He refused to eat his peas.  I told him that there were children in Africa starving as they had no peas to eat.  He cried and left the table.  Many years later he became a missionary to Africa.  He taught Jr. High students how to plant gardens.  



Evy babysitting Davy

 Evy babysitting Wayne and Davy



 Davy babysitting Wayne


Me babysitting Wayne and Davy

If you ask me now I can tell you why I believe what I believe!

 Jay supervising Davy



Sunday, October 1, 2017

GRANDPA WAS CORRECT

Grandpa, Mom, and Davy in about 1955


My grandfather, (my mom’s father), lived with us on and off from the 1950’s to 1965.  He passed away in November of that year at age 84. I think the reason for this need to have him live with us was his depression at being so far away from his “girls,” and his lack of a regular job to keep him busy.  His increasing dementia may have had something to do with this also.

We lived in Virginia and his home was in Washington.  Because of the long distance from Spokane, WA to Alexandria, VA this involved tricky logistics of helping him travel to Virginia from Washington and back again several times a year.

I have the letters my parents wrote to each other and to others who helped with Grandpa’s transportation.  One time it involved my dad and Jay traveling with him.  Another time it was my mom with him.  They hitched rides from the Eau Claire, Wisconsin relatives many times as well. 

You may ask why I believe that my grandfather was correct in his thinking.  He was correct about the Communists.  As I recall he wanted to build a fall out shelter in our backyard in Alexandria.  I’m not sure how far he got on it.  My brothers may know.  I was out of the loop after I left home in 1961 for college. 

It could have been just some paranoia but I think Grandpa knew that Communism was an evil form of government.  It flew in the face of his faith in Jesus.  Communistic governments demand that the State is worshiped and not God. 

The Ken Burns special on PBS this month only covers one side of the war in Vietnam.  The Christians who still live in Vietnam today can tell the rest of the story.  They are persecuted and threatened with death and prison.  Here is a recording from the Voice of the Martyrs telling how a pastors wife in Vietnam struggled with the police over her Bible.  They wanted to take it away from her but she was willing to die or go to prison before she would give up her Bible.  Here is another interview on a podcast from the Voice of the Martyrs.  These same conflicts go on in every Communist nation.  Communism is evil and needs to be eliminated.  It will be eradicated in God’s timing. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

SOMETIMES PAIN IS GOOD

Iguana in Cancun, Mexico.  Photo by Chris Brown.


On one trip to Mexico we took advantage of the shuttle bus from the hotel to the various restaurants.  On one trip back to the hotel I noticed an iguana next to the curb.  As we departed the bus I asked Chris if he would take a picture for me.  He did.  

Today I read a blog written by Jared C. Wilson.  He is a C. S. Lewis fan.  He used a picture of an iguana to illustrate his reference to a boy becoming a dragon.  He talks about how pain can produce good results.  I thought of our iguana pictures.  Here is another one by Chris.  If you would like to read the blog click here.


Photo by Chris Brown.


Another interesting blog I read today was by Justin Taylor.  He points out the differences between the Protestant and the Catholic church.  I can remember as a college student I determined I would not date any Catholics.  But today some Protestants are actually joining the Catholic church.  If you would like to read his blog click here.

A third blog I liked today was about the excuses God will hear on Judgement day.  I thought Jordan Standridge made some good points.  If you would like to read his blog click here.


Wednesday, September 13, 2017

TO WATCH OR NOT TO WATCH THAT IS THE QUESTION

My aunt Evelyn did not believe that we had a 7" TV.  Here we are watching it.  I think this is in Alexandria at our Jefferson Manor house. Evy is sitting next to Davy and Jay is on the right.



My dad liked to watch TV.  It was a natural tranquilizer for him. My mom hated TV.  She would rather be reading.  The following, I think, is the story of why we had a TV before anybody else in Fairbanks, Alaska:

We lived in California in 1947.  California had TV stations at that time.  Apparently my dad purchased a 7" TV.  I appeared on the Howdy Doody TV show with my Brownie Troop. My mom watched the show and she said that they showed a close up of me.   

Then when we arrived in Alaska in 1950 there were no TV broadcasting stations.  We switched back to listening to the radio. Two years later we moved to Virginia.  In 1952 in Virginia there was at least one TV broadcast station.  We watched "Captain Video" and enjoyed it very much.  I remember one time two neighbors, Beverly Barrett and Rita Raybold came over to ask me to come out and play.  I turned them down so I could watch "my show."  After that I did go out and play with them.  Later I dressed the neighbors and Evy up in old costumes of mine and presented recitals.
Bottom to top Davy, me, Beverly, Rita, and 2 more I don't remember.

I don't remember the names of those five in this picture.  On the right is Evy, Davy sitting below.

  Jay watched cartoons.  I'm not sure how Evy, Davy, or Wayne felt about TV but I know Jay and I enjoyed it like our dad. (Jennifer let me know that Evy liked Seinfeld.  She also liked Mission Impossible as I recall.) My dad and I would bet on how many times Mannix got hit on the head during the Mannix show.  That was an enjoyable dad/daughter time for us. I doubt my mom ever watched the show.  Sarah reminded me that she watched and enjoyed Lawrence Welk. 

Now Chris and I  have cable TV.  We have 24 hour coverage.  I have at least 2 Christian friends who do not watch cable news. I am considering following their examples.  Here is a blog which asks some interesting questions to consider about cable news.  

Here is a You Tube of Springsteen's song "57 Channels (And Nothin' On).