Monday, October 29, 2012

2012 Four Sisters Farm Family Fall Party

Pumpkin Decorating is a must at our Family Fall Party...note the "Picaso Kitty" pumpkin face by SuperGirl!
Superman summed up this year's fall party like this, "Pop, I'm having so much fun it almost drives me crazy!"

Iron Man on Duty
I think I know what he means!  The grandkids went full speed all day - not only with our planned activities like the costume parade, hay rack ride, food, and games - but with just sheer, all-out running and playing with their cousins.  They loved the new climbing wall Pop had just installed at the tree house and challenged each other to new feats of strength.  The tree house was well protected with Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, and a Secret Spy.

The Climbing Wall at the Treehouse
The Fishing Game
The weather was a little chilly but didn't freeze out any of our plans.

We were missing a large part of our usual party participants this year!

PhoJo and his folks (who usually come party with us) were gone to a memorial service many miles away - They made a decision for Rock Star and the superheroes to stay home instead of logging all the miles.

Romeo's parents had a 60th wedding anniversary celebration to attend and adopted grandkids from church so their weekend was already packed as well.  I'm guessing they will have a little Bitty Princess costume parade of their own! :-)

We missed the Unconventionals in a HUGE way now that they are residing in Indiana!  We also missed Doc's parents who usually come to the fall party.

Pop and Grammy with 9 of the 13 GRANDkids
We partied on with our much smaller troupe and did have a great time.  Pop surprised us all and dressed up as Cousin Eddie from Christmas Vacation and Grammy donned a crown (an extra from Cinderella) to become the Camo Queen.

The pictures tell the story of good food and fun.  Enjoy!
Farm Chick, Rock Star, and Pretty Princess hamming it up

The Superheroes helping make pies

Super Girl and Q sharing a moment

Bitty Princess and her daddy, Romeo riding the horse swing

EJ (aka Angry Bird) flying

Q enjoying a cake pop made by Aunt Pretty Princess

Friday, October 12, 2012

A Safe Place

A precious young friend of mine came to visit us at Four Sisters Farm recently.  She has an incredible heart for the Lord and for His children.  She works as a Children's Pastor at her church several hours away from us and takes her job very seriously.  She was in need of some refreshing and we were privileged to have her here.

I enjoyed feeding her, visiting with her, and just basking in sweet fellowship. I had an opportunity to love on her and to pray over her. She got some rest....even a short cat nap in the our cat Boots snuggled up with her! I hope she will be able to return soon as her schedule allows. I was blessed beyond measure to see God use Four Sisters Farm as a safe haven for her and pray that He will continue to bless this place as He uses it for His glory and the good of His children.

“Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” 
Mark 6:31b (NIV)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

A Pole Cat at the Farm

Not a smelly skunk or musky weasel critter...Just Ranger...Pole Sitting.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Not for Us

Pop and I had a busy day today.  He was off work, so of course we worked at home!  He has had plans for some time to clean up the "mountain" by our pond.  I helped him for part of the day planting grass and clearing brush. What Pop sees as he does the work is our children and our grandchildren enjoying the pond, the dam, and the hill.  He sees sledding in the winter and picnics in the spring, summer, and fall.  He envisions a bench atop the hill for us to enjoy watching the kids as they play.  The work he does is not for him.

Later in the day, I left Pop still working on the hill and headed back to the house to do one of the things on my list.  I needed to seal the porch decking today so it will be ready for winter.  In the quiet of the afternoon I thought about the work we do at Four Sisters Farm.  As I applied the sealer, stroke by stroke with a wide paintbrush, a thought came to me softly from somewhere deep within..."The work you are doing isn't for you."  

I paused and pondered that thought and realized how true it is.  Oh, it is "our" place; "our" house; "our land."  In reality, it belongs to God like all things and we are the grateful stewards of what He chooses to give us.  

The work isn't about us at all...this place is a tool to be used as God sees fit.  We bought the place knowing that God had plans for it that we knew nothing about.  It brings us joy to share it with our family and our friends; and to wait and see what God will do with it...and us.  

As I continued painting, I came across the dents in the porch decking made by our young superheroes with small hammers.  I had no idea how strong they were (and are)!  Then I came across evidence of spilled wine that Daina and I enjoyed as we played with tiny kittens one evening.  There are red marks from the rocking chairs I painted for EJ and Farm Chick when they lived here that defy being covered by the "honey oak sealer" and skid marks from a small bicycle that was ridden on the porch when it rained one day.  As I came across each of those "scars" on the porch, the memories associated with them warmed my heart.  We could sand out those stains and dents...but why?  

Those imperfections in the porch are hallmarks of our lives here.  They reflect the growth of our grandchildren.  They bring to mind times we have sat on the porch...We once sat there with friends on a summer evening, sharing funny stories until it was later than any of us intended to stay up.  Another time, Jewel and I sat in rocking chairs praying for her mom when she was taken to the hospital (glad to say she is fine and still baking pies).  Of course, our Fourth of July fireworks are viewed from the porch as well as our annual costume parade of the grandchildren at our family fall party.

I realize that the work Pop and I are doing out here at Four Sisters Farm, means so much more than just physical labor.

As we work, the images that come to our minds have far greater implications than completing the task at hand... We see our young grand children at play...our children visiting and drinking coffee on the porch...evenings spent with friends...sunrises and sunsets...changing phases of our lives coming. 

Ecclesiastes 3:9-13, "What do workers gain from their toil?  I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race.  He has made everything beautiful in its time.  He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live.  That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil -- this is the gift of God."