Monday, January 16, 2017

Impetus ~ that’s all it takes

Hi Folks ~ I hope you all had a good weekend. From reading blogs I’ve seen that a lot of you have snow, snow and more snow. Your temps of – degrees are mind boggling. I don’t see how you handle it. I’ve read about your staying warm and cozy, making soups and breads and working on indoor projects or crafts. Although one dear blogging friend had a catastrophe as frozen water pipes unthawed and burst causing her living room ceiling to fall to the floor, creating one big mess. Keep dear Sandra in your prayers as she deals with this and the chores and critters she takes care of on her farm, Thistle Cove Farm.

The temps did drop here a week ago Sunday, down to 42 and felt like it was 36. The only plants I did something about was putting most of the orchids in a sheltered area. Ferns got burned, but they’ll come back, never fear. They just look awful being all brown.

Thank you all so much for your encouraging words.  Being a widow has certainly changed my world. The past few weeks I’ve been having ‘down’ thoughts of what is my life about now. Nothing seems worth doing. I lost my job 2 years ago, and I don’t have my dear love here to share everything with like we did. He knew me inside and out, he loved me, he encouraged me, we were a team. As a believer in Jesus as my Savior, I am to do all things as to Him, not just for myself. That kind of puts a different slant on things. He is with me at all times, so, may I do all that I do with joy and thanksgiving for each new day I am blessed with. Each day is a gift and I can either squander it or make the best of it and move forward with graciousness. I choose the latter.

I’ve been watching you-tube videos, reading blogs and being inspired. Well, yesterday morning I was given a lovely gift from the ‘butterfly lady’ at church. She was doing some redecorating in her kitchen, and the piece she gave me she felt just belonged in Plum Cottage. I opened up her gift after I got home and I just kept smiling as tears filled my eyes. It is perfect and I love it. It was the ‘impetus’ I needed to make a change in my living room. ‘Impetus’ ~  the force that makes something happen.

Isn’t this beautiful?


My mind started thinking on how to change the ‘faux’ mantle and the wall above it, and I looked forward to getting up this morning to start working on the project.

Here is a ‘before’ photo this morning. There is a huge TV under the ‘faux’ mantle, an old top I pulled out of storage. I screwed a 1x1 inch strip to the wall at the level it needed to be to rest the back of piece on.  The front rests on the TV. I don’t watch it, and it’s too dang heavy and big for me to move it out, so I camouflaged it. Winking smile I did that project in October of 2013. I liked the look, but that was done in the throes of grief, now that I’m into my 5th year I needed a lighter, happier look.


I put on my accoustic Spanish guitar playlist on you-tube, lit a nicely scented candle and got to work. I shopped my little cottage for a new look with this space with my lovely gift front and center so to speak.

Below is the ‘after’ look.

The two pineneedle framed paintings were painted by my dear husband’s grandmother, Mama, and Papa, grandfather, made the pineneedle framework around them. Pineneedles collected from this property. Mama taught herself to paint in her 60-70’s I think . She also taught my dear husband, and I am thankful for the love and encouragement she gave to him as a young teen.



Two shell floral pieces, don’t remember where we got these, flea market or yard sale.


The two amber/pink vases were bought at a yard sale many, many years ago.

I’m not sure where we got the bronze deer. They used to have riders, which were sort of a lid, we only had one rider. I believe they were inscense burners.

I bought the pink Himalayan salt lamp last year. It has a dimmer switch which is great for setting different moods. They are supposed to have good health benefits.


Everytime I look at this display now, I smile and am thankful for so much.

Have you ever watched ‘The Secret Millionaire’ show? This will make you feel thankful for your blessings, no matter the size. I have been thinking about ‘how’ can I, living on my very limited income, help others and have felt burdened. Then I got an upliting piece in my email yesterday or this morning.

“We can make a difference and huge differences.

Every Christian woman has access to a tremendous source of power—PRAYER.”

We may not always see answers to our prayers, but we can know that God is working in every situation and hears our prayers. So, when you see or hear of a need, pray.


Before I end this post, here are some roses for you.







Pink ‘Drift’




Below is the latest heart that I am working on.



This is what I did with the little weaving I made from my ‘Weave-It’ loom.

A little pin-cushion.


I made another weaving and thought it was going to be just fine, but three sides came out with the nice scalloped edge, and the fourth was awful. I tried again, the same thing, so for now I’ve given up. I have a new blogging friend through this. She told me she also had the same problem with one side and has also given up. Maybe someone out there can help remedy the problem for us.

Ok, that’s it from Plum Cottage.

Have a nice week ~ FlowerLady


Darcie said...

Yes! What we can give to help others is not determined at all by the money in our wallet, but by the 'talents' 'gifts' that God has bestowed on each of us. A listening ear, a hug, an email, a flower, your presences when someone is all is useful, and doesn't cost a penny. Just our willingness to be open to when the spirit prompts us, and then trusting his leading to make that difference. I know you have made a difference in my life...and I've never met you, and you haven't spent one've just been you! You are a dear lady, and I consider you a dear friend!

Love, love, love your new very pretty!

Nancy J said...

" After"is totally beautiful, light, airy, each piece has its own wall space. and I can see you there, well done. love the weaving piece, and your blue heart, gorgeous. Hugs from a warm NZ today, even with wind that hasn't stopped for days.

Jane said...

Love the new lighter decor Rainey! Isn't it fun to redecorate? There is much to pray about these days, should keep everyone busy!


Deb said...

I love the new change! Looks great! Those salt lamps of nice mood setters! I love the new heart you are working on. You are so right about prayer - it is powerful. God bless you during the coming week!

Ruth Hiebert said...

Your redecorating looks great.That new gift is vey precious.

Cheryl said...

You certainly are a creative gal, Lorraine! I love how you created your faux mantel -- an ingenious solution to removing your huge TV. And now freshened up to suit your fancy, it is so pretty and cheerful.

Oh my, I will pray for your blog friend Sandy. That must be so awful for her!

Terra Hangen said...

It is hard to be on the widow's path and you are an example to me of how to keep moving on. Your mantle area looks much more cheery now, with your new rose plate gift and the paintings. I had not heard of pine needle frames before, see, you showed me something new today.

Debbie Harris said...

Your new make over looks fabulous! Fresh, new and uplifting.
I loved seeing your reflection in the mirror. :)
As always, I enjoyed the photos from your flower garden.

Much Love~~

GretchenJoanna said...

That looks like a very successful makeover to me - I love it! It's days such as you had today that are so encouraging - when we break out of a slump and take an idea and run with it. May the Lord give you more experiences like this where He shows you the path to walk in, and it turns out to be easy and fun. It seems we can't force them - but when they come, what a gift. Love to you today, Flower Lady!

Jessica Jarrell said...

It's been cold here, but no snow or ice thank goodness! Talking about your friend with the burst water pipe, I'm just thankful ours burst outside and not a lot of water made it's way inside. What a nightmare! I'll definitely keep your friend in my thoughts. And that flower plate is just gorgeous! Loved the wall makeover, it looks beautiful! The best gifts are the ones that mean something :-)

I hope you have a great week FlowerLady!

Rebecca said...

Yes! Sometimes just a little change-about can make a huge difference! I like how you edited your faux mantel ♥ And, of course, photos of your beautiful flowers are always a welcomed sight...

Becky said...

I love your new faux mantle set up so pretty. The deer are amazing! Beaded needle cases are on my to do list for this year.

NanaDiana said...

What a pretty piece that lady gifted you with, Lorraine. It gives a whole new look to your wall. I think it is wonderful that you are feeling re-energized and that you feel like doing something fun for your home again.

I read about Sandra's plight with her house earlier. That is just so awful. I am really sorry that she has to deal with all that. I know she misses her husband/companion, too.

Have a blessed day, Lorraine. xo Diana

A Joyful Cottage said...

You are an inspiration to everyone who reads your blog, Rainey. We all have down times in our lives, but believers in Christ have something the world can never give. . .the power to overcome our struggles. In His strength all is possible, which is basically your message. You chose to lean on Him and move forward. I like the changes you made on your wall very much. The plate given to you by your church friend is lovely, and everything you added fits beautifully. Keep inspiring us, my friend! You are a treasure. xo

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

The new look is appealing with lighter colours and I like the addition of the salt lamp.

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

As to the cold we wear layers :) Sometimes I have a sort of undershirt, then a sweatshirt or something over that, and then a big sweater or heavy sweatshirt jacket over that. THIS is just inside the house :)

Right now in PA, it's crazy again and has warmed to 62 degrees this afternoon with rain versus snow. Lots of mud here. But the gas bill will not be horrible so I am thankful.

What a wonderful IMPETUS gift you recieved and I always enjoy seeing your flowers as well as inside Plum Cottage :)

Junkchiccottage said...

What a sweet gift just when you needed it most. Love the pretty change up. Wishing you a great week ahead.

Melanie said...

I always like reading your posts because you are honest about how you are feeling, but yet you always find a way to look on the bright side and have some encouraging words. You also make me realize how grateful I am to have my husband...not that I'm not grateful for him...but when I read how hard things are mentally and physically for you (and the same goes for any widow), it makes me even MORE grateful for my wonderful husband. We've been married 32 years and I pray we will have a lot more. He is my "rock". I'm no stranger to loss - I've lost a child (7 years ago; he was 21). Somehow I manage to go on after that, but of course, I have my husband by my side to help me through that and vice versa. Anyway, I'm rambling. Love your new lightened look. That mirror is gorgeous. And what a pretty gift from your friend.

As far as the bitter cold temps, I guess we deal with it because we simply don't have a choice! We stay in as much as possible and when we have to go out, we bundle up. Right now it's 35 so doesn't feel so bad. ;-)

Maryann said...

I love the new look, much brighter and lighter, perfect for this time of year. You must know you are really an encouragement to me. You don't sugarcoat the difficulties in be a widow but in the end you always look to the Lord. I think we can all learn something from that in our own hard places

Cathy @ My 1929 Charmer said...

I also like the lighter look. It nice that you were helped and also give back. its been more dreary and rainy here the last week or two. Strange winter for us in IL. Never had much luck with orchids.they require too much time for me, but good for you.

Being a widow must has its bad moments and turned your world upside down. Right after the holidays is always such a hard time for me...feeling totally burnt out and don't want to do anything..maybe it's because there's been no sun.

Thank you for your kind words on us losing our beloved Little One.

PS.. we're always here to listen!

Morning's Minion said...

In these retirement years I sometimes feel let down in the middle of a project--the 'why am I doing this'--'does this really matter?'
Perhaps this is a normal phase when we no longer have jobs or a young family to provide for.
Thankfully these moods don't last too long and I am blessed with the energy to be creative.
Your roses are lovely even when a bit weather-beaten.
I like the way you've been 'fluffing up' your cottage--cozy with pretties to enjoy.

September Violets said...

How nice of your friend to give you this beautiful piece. I like that it inspired you to make a change. The new look is so light and pretty now, you made a great transformation. You've written a nice post about prayer and how we can help each other through prayer. Have a great weekend in your warm & sunny home :)
Wendy xox

M.K. said...

Prayer -- it is every person's immense wealth. So true!! Thank you for that reminder. Quietly, with our heavenly Father, we have the ability to change the world and give needy friends the thing they need most. And roses in January! Amazing. Blessings, dear FL.

Sandra @ Thistle Cove Farm said...

Yes, praying is our weapon and unleashes Heaven's angels. Have you found the salt rock to be useful? I've thought about getting one but where I live is so clean, not sure it'd make a difference. Rainey, thank you for your prayers and mention; it's been a process, still continuing, but God has a plan.
As to being a widow...still difficult, probably will always be difficult but I keep busy and that helps me but there are times it all seems...what's the point?
The point is Jesus and pointing the way toward Him.


Hi Lorraine. I heard about the potential for tornadoes in your neck of the woods. I hope and pray all is okay with you. I wanted to mention that I recently heard that those salt lamps can be a fire hazard. But if you've had it for a few years without any problems it's probably okay. It might not hurt to research it though. Take care and have a great week. Love you.

Deborah Montgomery said...

Isn't it wonderful how one beautiful thing can inspire us and change our whole outlook? So glad you found some inspiration to lift your heart. Your embroidery is just lovely. xo

Kate R said...

Your posts are always so uplifting Lorraine and it was lovely that your friend gave you such a beautiful piece that inspired you to make over your mantel - it turned out beautifully. Hugs to you for 2017 - hoping it is filled with many blessings and kind friends.

L. D. said...

I really like seeing your flowers and your creations. The mantle area works great and the new piece fits right in to the area.