Five Minute Friday Writing Prompt—Story

Attending the Highland County Maple Sugar Festival this past weekend has become a fun, yearly family outing.

Maple sugar camps are open for tours. Maple doughnuts, candies, and cotton candy are delicious! We buy our supply of good Virginia maple syrup there at the local sugar camps.

While waiting in a long line for lunch, my daughter-in-love and I decided to look into a recently restored lovely, old home now a destination for over-night guests.

While heading up the stairs, the young girl told us a most interesting story. “Be careful, the top of this newel post is loose.” Our puzzled look brought the answer. “It was the hidey-hole for their illegal liqueur during Prohibition.”

We had never seen that nor heard a story like that before!

Worse than Instagram!

Our entire afternoon was spent in front of the computer looking, looking and placing bids. We had a great time! What held our time, attention and potentially our money so long?

An auction. Not just any auction. This sale of household items was of a large, local estate.

Passing by the property on trips to town brought questions of the layout of the house. It was not typical. Well set from the main road and up on a small rise of land, the property has a commanding view of the countryside. The layout of the house was rather hard to figure while passing by. I often wondered about it. That all changed with the passing of the owners.

Household contents were recently auctioned off. Two days were set aside for visiting the property to view the items, though the entire sale was on-line. I excitedly joined my friend for viewing the items. I was finally going to see this house.

What a fun time we had in this fine, grand home. It seemed no expense was spared in building it. Marble floors, high ceilings, padded fabric wall treatments, lovely millwork, and elaborate custom drapes were second in comparison to the magnificent circular staircase. It formed the centerpiece of the home.

From a beautifully finished ‘basement’, it wound gracefully around the first floor, up to the second floor. Rooms opened into the well-lit circular hall that completely surrounded the staircase. Behind a door on each level waited an elevator prepared to assist those unable to traverse the staircase.

It was interesting to see the items that we had been bidding for on-line in person. Even great photos cannot compare to real life. Some items were dropped from our list, others were added. We went home and glued ourselves again to the computer.

I had been bidding for days on several items, thinking I won it! However, the final minute of open bidding was the most intense. A bidding frenzy starts in that final minute for a much desired item.

This is worse than Instagram, AND more expensive!”, I laughingly told my friend.

We both won a few bids, and visited that house one more time to pick up our items. Auctions are fun, but they are not for the faint of heart.

Going, going, GONE!!

Five Minute Friday Writing Prompt—Choose

I did choose very well eighteen years ago today. Casey Creek Farm in Kentucky was an adoption farm for abandoned nurse mare foals. We were adopting a beautiful, tiny one-month old buckskin filly. I choose her from a pile of photographs they had posted on their website.

Never having had any experience in raising a foal without its momma made it a scary yet exciting adventure to undertake. High Hope seemed the perfect name for her and me.

I could write pages about how High Hope has touched and blessed the lives of so many people in her eighteen years of life. She is a fine mare and one of the greatest joys of my life.

The photo I choose High Hope from.
Happy foaling day today, High Hope! Eighteen years ago today, March 10, 2005!

Write 28 Day Challenge—#28 Stewardship

My husband and I are stewards. We run our household, domestic concerns, rents, and keep accounts of our properties. We take our stewardship seriously. Truth is we are all stewards over something or someone.

We have been called to stewardship in Scripture. God instructed Adam to tend the Garden (Genesis 2:15). Joseph was given stewardship over all of Egypt, answering only to Pharaoh himself (Genesis 39:4-6). The king appointed Daniel over his entire kingdom (Daniel 6:1-3).

He who tends the fig tree will eat its fruit. And he who cares for his master will be honored. Proverbs 27:18

We also answer to our governments, local, state and national in regards to our stewardship. However, not everyone is responsible in equal ways. “The poor” Jesus said, “will always be among you.” Just the same, our caring for our personal concerns, household and personal accounts are our responsibility.

I grew up in the Shenandoah Valley. We have a large Mennonite community in our area. They live very differently from us, according to their Christian beliefs. It is wonderful. One belief that is different is in regards to the poor. They help one another in many admirable ways. Yet they believe that, though one may be poor, it is no excuse for being dirty, nor sloppy around their homes and farms.

My sisters are professional real estate agents. They say they have often seen neater, tidier mobile homes than some of the largest homes in their area. That, gentle reader, is what stewardship is all about. Taking good care of what has been entrusted to us.

So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God. Romans 14:12.

Write 28 Day Challenge—#27 Favorite

Who at my age, having grown up with Julie Andrews and The Sound of Music, does not think of her singing ‘My Favorite Things’ to the frightened children? Remember? The thunderstorm and her singing this song to comfort the children?

I have carried her advice from that song ever since she cheerfully sang it:

When the dog bites; when the bee stings; when I’m feeling sad; I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad!

I wonder if she had any idea just how much her song would influence so many folk. It encouraged us to count our blessings in the midst of our pain (when the dog bites) or real fears of life. Recall the children went to her for fear of the thunderstorm.

The Sound of Music is one of my favorite all-time films. Filled to the brim with all the hope and joy available to us all, if we choose. While not leaving out the fears, doubts and sad disappointments we also experience in our real lives.

The ultimate win against evil as a result of their bravery and working together to gain that win makes it the best family show I have ever seen. Little wonder it is one of my favorite things.

I think it is movie night tonight. Guess what is on the play list? 😊

Write 28 Day Challenge—Saver

I do not think I ever considered myself a saver of this sort until I looked up the meaning in my Webster Collegiate Dictionary, copyright 1936. My second favorite book, next to the Bible. Saver: verb; To make safe; to rescue or deliver from danger. This is going to be an easy word prompt.

For most of our nearly forty-five years of marriage my husband and I have saved dogs in dog pounds. From all over Virginia we have picked our rescues. The joys these dogs have brought to us can barely be told.

The last two dogs that owned our hearts were from the same pound. I had picked one for our Mom, and the other for me and my family. Whoopie, was Moms dog, she lived with Mom until her passing. Upon which Whoopie came home to our house to live. Here she and Dandy (our rescue) lived happily together for years. I love “100% Pure Pound Dogs”, as I always called them when asked what breed they were.

The smiles and company they brought to our lives cannot be measured. Constant companions with smiling, happy faces. Who ever dared to complain about that? They both are gone, buried side by side here on our farm.

We have new dogs now to fill those empty spaces, which is a joy. Still I would like to share with you some photos of two good dogs we chose to be the saver of.

Sweet Whoopie
Our boy Dandy

Write 28 Day Challenge#22—Danger, Common, Problem, Threat

I am following an example from a fellow Write 28 Day Challenge neighbor, blog, Words, Photo, Art. That is I am incorporating four word prompts into this one post.

These four words are descriptive of the threat the CCP, Chinese Communist Party (it’s common name), is to us in the United States. Officially known as the Communist Party of China (CPC).

Communism is an economic system that operates on collective ownership of property and organized labor for the common advantage of all members. Controlled by an authoritarian regime that claims a higher social order where all goods are equally shared by the people, thereby producing a communal society. It is a power-hungry, oppressive, Godless system/lifestyle, that sounds ‘good’.

The common problem, danger and threat is to our capitalistic system and society as a whole. These two economic systems, capitalism and communism, are like oil and water. They are antithesis to each other.

Why is this a threat and danger to us? In case you have not been listening, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) hates our capitalistic system, our freedoms, our country, and is in the active business of trying to destroy it.

They are buying land, and factories, setting up their own police stations in our big cities and infiltrating our universities. They are not playing games with our country, freedoms or lifestyle.

I am not writing this as a scare tactic. This is a real threat, danger, and problem that affects all our common way of life. This post is an appeal to consider just what we can do to avert their willful actions against us.

First and foremost, stop giving them money. Pay attention to just how much of your daily spending goes to Communist China. Made in China, Made in CCP, or Made in CPC is money supporting communism. It is quite a challenge to avoid buying from Communist China but it can be done. Another thing to seriously consider is the widely popular Tik-Tok social media app. It is owned by Communist China. Please consider not giving your life’s information away to a country that is bent on destroying us. And finally elect officials that know and understand the real threat communism poses on the free world.

P.S. a side note–for anything purchased at a second hand store—point of origin does not matter. The money goes to the owner of the store! Isn’t that great?