Thursday, July 30, 2009

Husbands Love Your Wives...

Husbands, love your wives just as Christ also love the church and gave Himself up for her that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having not spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherish it, just as Christ also does the church because we are members of His body. For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church. Nevertheless let each individual among you also love his own wife even as himself; and let the wife see to it that she respect her husband Ephesians 5:25-33

An unusual opening to a post I'm sure, but for good cause for today I have been given the example of two such men that loved their wives as Christ loved the church. Two men that probably don't know each other, yet they are brothers. Within an hour each of them witnessed their beautiful brides passing into the loving arms of their Savior to be with Him forever in glory. Each of these men loved their wives. They stood by their sides during sickness and in health, they kept their wedding vows to the bitter/sweet temporary separation that each felt last night - one at 9:45 PM and one at 10:17 PM. Different stories, the same ending. There is rejoicing in heaven today as these precious wives have met their glorious reward - to see Jesus face to face. And on earth we are relying on the Holy Spirit to bring comfort to those left behind. Yes, homecomings are both bitter and sweet, but because our hope is in the risen Lord, Jesus Christ, God's only Son who offered us redemption for our sins through His sacrifice on the cross, through this hope we can truly say it's not goodbye but a temporary separation. My sisters, I'll see you soon. I'll pray for your husbands as they continue this journey without you by their side. They have truly been an example of a godly husband and will one day join you again in eternity forever praising Jesus. Come quickly Lord Jesus!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More On The Fabric Bowls

This first photo was provided by Jamie Wallen as a promotional for the workshops held here last month of baskets made by him and his partner Rosanne Campisi - the designers for the fabric bowls and new DVD Mrs. Kings' Gallery Baskets. This is the premier week and if you act now you can order the 2 day/2 disk workshop at an introductory price. Visit Jamie Wallen's website for ordering information.

So what makes these baskets unique? First of all they are done on the domestic sewing machine -- someone e-mailed me to ask if they were longarm baskets, which would be a natural assumption since Jamie and Rosanne are both A-1 Longarm Quilting Machine dealers and since Jamie is a National Longarm Instructor. So breathe a sigh of relief and clap your hands while uttering a big "ye-ha" guys and gals - anyone with a sewing machine can do this!

The other thing that I find interesting, besides how relaxing and theraputic not to mention addicting this can be, is the fact that it's made of our scrap fabric -- I've now found a use for the left over binding fabric that I couldn't bring myself to throw away... Okay, that's not the only thing intersting...what IS unique to their method is the construction. I'm not going to give away the trade secrets (grin) but if you look closely you can see that there are no loose threads - in other words, no raggy craftie looking "unfinish" -- these truly are gallery bowls/baskets. The one pictured above is also shown pictured below with a bowl from my fellow workshop classmate (see June archives on the Jamie Wallen Workshops)

Aren't they beautiful! I wish I had photos of the ones my classmate has made since the workshops - but here's a photo or two of what I've done since class. I took the same principle and made a bath mat for my bathroom, it is scotch-guarded and when it wears out it wears out (grin)

This past weekend I made the matching bowl to sit atop the necessary spot in my bathroom holding a necessary item (grin)

So all that to say this -- check out the information on the DVD - there are several different styles and lots and lots of wonderful details on the 2 disk DVD. My friends Jamie and Rosanne really are top notch in their methods and ease of teaching, you will feel like you have them in your home for your own private workshop -- and the best thing, you can rewind and review as many times as your little heart desires!

I'm seeing pretty Christmas prints on my next bowl/basket making adventure. Looks like I've solved the Christmas shopping delima!

PS - when you order, tell them Karen sent ya' -- the Quilt Rambler rambling at her best (grin)

Monday, July 27, 2009

July Retreat

All too soon it's over. Isn't that just the way it goes, you look forward to something, you plan, you pack, and then it's over. Ah, but the memories live on -- and are documented forever in photos! If you want to see ALL the fun including photos of our wonderful facilities you'll need to visit my webshots.

And now for The rest of the story!

Trish (cute little blond front row second from the left) and I headed north to meet Cindy (Miss Smiles, the one in the pink far left) for a shop hop prior to our retreat on Friday morning. We breezed through downtown Houston and actually arrived earlier than expected, which was great because we hit Timed Treasures just about the time they opened. After a nice shopping spree we headed to another quilt shop that is new to the area, Quilt Works in Cypress. They are so new that that don't have a website. For the record I managed to NOT purchase anything in either shop. Amazing! Not that I wasn't tempted, mind you, but I was focused on my unfinished projects packed in the back of my new car and was eager to get to the retreat center!

We got lost somewhere between the second shop and our retreat center. Hum. I think I'm going to ask for a GPS for Christmas! Arriving about an hour after we could have checked in at noon, we quickly unloaded our sewing machines and projects and joined the 4 ladies that 'got there first'!

Quilter's Cabin is really peaceful and wonderful retreat center. Everyone loved it. We laughed, we ate, we sewed, we listen to music as we sewed, we talked as we sewed, we enjoyed seeing each others projects as we sewed, and did I mention that we sewed?

Most of us bring several different projects to work on, some are already started and we hope to get them completed during the course of the weekend. Others are started there...Donna decided since this was her first retreat to make a small autograph quilt which we all signed so she'll now have a memory quilt to hang in her sewing room. This was an impromptu Square in a Square lesson where I taught her how to do the diamonds. Yep, fast, fun, finished!

Kris brought a work in progress and was able to complete the blocks, add borders and later add applique flowers to the top.

I had high hopes...wanted to finish my purple and lime green project and hoped to move on to another one. It took longer than I thought, but I did get all the blocks together. Now I just need to add borders to call it done. By the way, the blue project that I brought, I did pull it out the last day but decided that I really didn't want to work on it, now or ever. A little friendly bartering and my UFO went home with someone else! How's that for checking one off the to do list!

Annette was able to sew all the blocks and complete her flannel quilt that has been sitting on a shelf for several years, she's looking forward to having it quilted and being able to cuddle with it this fall.

The "grand finale" was demo-ing the fabric bowl technique I learned from Jamie Wallen (The DVD has just been released!!) I think I've pre-sold some DVD's for my friend Jamie and his partner Roseanne! This little bowl matches my bathroom rug and looks great on the back of the throne holding "the spray" (grin)

Yep, all too soon it was time to pack up and reload the car. As we had almost cleared out the sewing room when Trish noticed someone carrying out their pillow and said "Oh, I have clothes!" then hurried to the bedroom to pack up her personal belongings! Funny how to a quilter the most important things on your mind is your sewing machine and fabric!

I'm thankful for the friends that joined me to celebrate my birthday with a sewing retreat. We had a great time! Again, for all the photos visit my webshots!

PS I forgot to say "for the record" I turned out the lights at 3 AM each night, AND I hold the record for sewing the longest WITHOUT a bobbin -- eight and a half blocks!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Something old, something new, something purple, something blue

No, it's not the wedding saying, it's my birthday! (hence the purple part) And the title will make sense in a little while (grin).

First things first. In response to inquiring minds that want to's a picture of my kissing cousins thread. The one on the left is Melcomart's ARC and the one on the right is Isacord. These are the staples of my thread drawer. ARC is no longer available having been replaced by Madeira, which I've been told is good thread, but I'm going to be replacing my color stash with Isacord, which I've been building up over the past year or two anyway. I run these threads exclusively in the bobbin no matter what thread I use on top (King Tut, Rainbows, ARC, Isacord). And that's my story and I'm stickin' to it! Did I mention that they have over 200 colors!!

You are seeing a sneak preview of my birthday wholecloth. I didn't get started until late afternoon and didn't get as far as I wanted to, but the night is still young.

I've tried to make it a habit since 2004 to make a birthday quilt every year...more on that later...this one is some of the hand dyed fabric from the workshops last month with Jamie Wallen. It's just a little piece, somewhere around 28 x 40 I think and it's going to be yummy.

Son #2 is my artist, this is a picture he painted and gave to me today for my birthday. He knows my colors doesn't he! He's on his way over and we're going to bake cookies tonight.

This is my REAL birthday present, even though it arrived a little early (last week). Pixxie is checking out my new ride! (This is my something NEW, or at least new to me)

Tomorrow in celebration of my birthday I'm going on a road trip to my favorite retreat center in Tomball, the Quilter's Cabin This will be my third time hosting a sew-in. I've dubbed this one "49 and holding!" and can't wait to pack up the new ride with all my quilting projects.

This suitcase if full of my living room fabric left-over scraps. I've made curtains, a wallhanging that isn't quilted yet, and a couch quilt that just needs the binding sewn down and still have scraps!. My goal for this weekend is another scrap quilt (see the EQ6 pattern?) and cover some pillows for the couch. (This is my something OLD, even though some of the other projects are older - just work with me here okay)

This is another project that I'm bringing to work on. Several of the gals are bringing the same "block of the month" that we never quite finished. Off hand I can't remember what year Quilts By the Bay in Galveston offered it, but I'm sure one of the gals will refresh my memory. I'm going to try to come up with something creative and use the 5 blocks that I managed to actually make and turn this into a smaller quilt than the original queen 3 x 4 setting with sashing. The retreat center has fabulous design walls and I'm eager to take advantage of them! (This is my something BLUE)

And here's my something PURPLE. It's also my unfinished 2007 birthday quilt. The plan for the quilt was to contain 47 purples to celebrate my age, now I have to figure out if I can work in 49 or just call it done and not worry about it GRIN. This was the only year (2007) that I didn't complete a quilt for my birthday. The others have all been pretty simple patterns, I guess that's why they got finished!

Oh, and I thought I'd throw in another something NEW just in case. These are fabrics that I collected when I did my Dangling Carrot quilt but decided not to use, I just used the fabrics that my friends shared with me. Well, one of those cyper friends was Le Ann Weaver author of Loose Change. If I have the opportunity I think these fabrics would look great with one of the patterns in the book. It's a great book, I'd highly recommend it.

Well, Son #2 just arrived, I'd sent him out for eggs. Plan on making enough cookies for hubby's lunch and a co-worker who keeps asking "when is your wife making cookies again", son #2 and his roommate, son #1 and his roommates, and enough to share at the retreat this weekend. That's a lot of cookies!

Stay tuned, there WILL be photos from the retreat! In the meantime, check out the webshots from previous year's past. We have a great time! Wish you all could come GRIN

Monday, July 20, 2009

Guns and Quilts? What's the common denominator?

Simple. The common denominator is the George R Brown Convention Center in Houston!

Sunday we had an afternoon "date" to the gun show. Okay gals, equal time here. Hubby goes to the quilt shows so I go to the gun shows and car shows!

I love taking the bird's eye view photo from the third floor of the GRB looking down onto the floor. The gun show was in Hall B where as the quilt show takes up Halls A-D AND all the classrooms and ballrooms throughout the facility. Gosh, it's still 3 months away, but it was great to be in familiar stomping grounds even if the booths and vendors were a little foreign to me (grin).

You have to realize that I'm a Texan, and yes, all those things about Texans being conservative gun toters is pretty much the way it is, at least at this show! Have to admit that I had a blast and managed to do a little shopping for myself....

Okay, now on to quilts!!! I worked really hard the past week or so on a beautifully HUGE king size quilt that was custom quilted with lots of feathers. You may recognize it as one of Pam Bono's designs that was featured in a magazine last spring. My customer was very eager to have it returned to her quilted this past week, and I enjoyed quilting it.

Of course I have to take close ups of the back side....other photos will be uploaded later in my current quarter of customer quilts on webshots.

In between the king size quilt I squeezed in two small quilts that are a part of a "buddy quilting classs" at the local Pinwheels and Posies Quilt shop. You really need to go to the shop to see them in person. This one is custom quilted with freestyle feathers and my special butterfly logo sprinkled in...

And this one is done with a pantograph of feathers. Both are beautiful and made of the same fabrics, just reversed or something (grin) You need to read the class description. Two folks work with the same kit together and then the end result is two different quilts with the shared colors. I'd love to have time to make these as I think they are really pretty.

I will be putting close ups on the webshot album so you can see the difference in quilting....right now I'm ready to join hubby for a DVD and a little popcorn all safe inside our home with the freedom of quilts and guns that make Texas, and America, great.

Betcha' learned something new about the Quilt Rambler -- I enjoyed the gun show (this was really my first)... can't beat'em join'em -- after all, they enjoy my quilts!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

So where's My computer?

Inquiring minds want to know (grin)

I gave up the desk top for a lap top around Christmas time - hence the ease of rotating the computer desk out of circulation in my new corner of the studio. I purchased a laptop 'tv tray' at Wally-world the other day and I can conduct business anywhere in the room since the tray is on wheels (and I have a wirelesss printer! too cool!)

So there you have it guys and gals! The mystery is solved.

Next re-do will be the corner next to the couch to the left -- that's my domestic sewing machine nook and it's in a bad way....but, in time it will be transformed too. Gives me something to look forward too (grin)

Oh, and one more thing -- more than half the books in my cabinet were purchased from half-priced books or guild auctions, so for the record I've shopped wisely for my collection (double grin)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Time for a Studio Re-Do

My studio has been a work in process for over 3 1/2 years now. I keep rearranging and reorganizing, it takes awhile to come up with the ideas and then a while longer to be able to finance those ideas. I call it 'phases" as in Phase 1, Phase 2, etc. I'm not sure what phase I'm on now, but it was time to de-clutter and regroup a portion of the studio.

This is the corner of my studio that was screaming for help - the business center (Ha! More like the clutter center). To the right in the photo is the door to the kitchen, only we never close the door -- too much trouble to move the quilt rack. This is the entrance to my studio, and it's sorta a narrow passage for my customers to enter an otherwise spacious room.

The other door on the left leads to my laundry room. Since that is also Pixxie's exit to the backyard the door is typically open. You can't see it, but to the immediate left is the end of my longarm. When my chair is at the computer table it's a pretty narrow passage to get to the laundry room...Plus it's an unsightly mess and I've been embarrassed way too long - no matter how hard I try, there I can't seem to win the paper wars..

So Friday night after our dinner and a movie we went shopping at Lowe's and came up with a solution. As you can see I have a most accommodating hubby...he had to work late on Saturday (as I did, a huge king size customer quilt on the frame) but knew he'd be working late in the studio. He's a willing partner as well as Pixxie being a willing helper. This photo is the corner diagonally across from the re-do corner. It's somewhat cluttered with all the mess I had to move out of the make-over area. Why is it that you have to mess up to clean up? Something I've never totally understood but have proven over and over!

By late Saturday night (and I mean late!) Part one of this phase was complete. Including removing the kitchen door that we never use. That alone freed up some visual space.

Naturally nothing goes together easily. Even with reading directions they somehow don't know how to write them in English any more these days, and if they do, they somehow manage to leave out important details that you have to discover for yourself, then undo what you just spent 30 minutes doing and do it a different way.

Well, it's been a long Sunday afternoon! First things first, we truly enjoyed worship this morning. Pastor Ron has started a new series. He preaches verse by verse and covers one book at a time. Today he began the book of Revelation and anticipates spending about 6 months in this study. If you are interested you can purchase CD's of the sermons or just go to the website each Tuesday and download the podcasts! Then knowing we had a lot of work to do this afternoon we opted for lunch out at a local pizza place...

Okay, back to the rambling and reporting in of the makeover.

Hubby finished the other two cabinets while I began the re-arranging of items...We finished up about 8 PM and are fixing to settle in for that leftover pizza we brought home. I still have some loose ends but they will have to wait until after work tomorrow....

I am so pleased with my new little corner! Not only is it brighter and more organized but there's more floor space. I still am 'living with' the paneling that we have wanted to paint since before we moved in, but there is never a good time to shut down the production of the studio to be able to accomplish this task. One day....

In the meantime I now have ALL of my quilting books in one place (and one room!), DVD's on the top shelf, machine quilting books on the second shelf, then the remaining shelves for piecing/quilting books. I've determined that I can't squeeze one more book in this cabinet (and hope that will curb my appetite). I am so truly blessed with such a wealth of information that now I just need to use what I have and re-discover the treasures in my new chest. I'm almost giddy with the excitement of that thought!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Update on the Wedding Dress Quilt

Thanks to all who have left comments about the Wedding Dress Quilt. My customer picked it up Thursday and has a week to sew on the binding and all the embellishments before the 10 year anniversary date. I am hoping to get a final photo from her, it is a SURPRISE for the happy couple -- whom I am hoping does not have any reason to check out quilting on the internet (grin) and have their surprise spoiled due to my photos!. Here's a link to my webshot album where you can see all the close ups including the front and back!

As a quilter, I sometimes like the back as much as the front. And yes, wool batting is fabulous to quilt on. I haven't tried silk yet, even thought I have a sample...on my list of 'one day I'll do that"

In the meantime I'm working on a king size Pam Bono design quilt that the customer said "quilt as desired as long as it has feathers!" So stay tuned!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

What on my frame?

Glad you asked! (grin) I've been working all day on a beautiful 10th anniversary quilt made entirely from the bride's dress complete with the lace trimmings!

I'm in awe of the piecing! Nice 10 inch blocks that are either full of digitized embroidery, many of which I believe are Sharon Schamber designs (talk about intimidation factor, how do you quilt behind a Sharon design!) or are blocks containing pieces of lace from the dress or are crazy patches containing photos of the bride and groom.

Amazing. What a wonderful heirloom. And I'm having so much fun quilting it. Again a quilt as desired quilt, freedom to do what I think needs to be done. I truly work best within this freedom -- once I get started that is (grin). Sometimes it takes me a while to be inspired.

This is slow moving, it's not a big quilt by any means, just lots of detail and I'm having to remove the lace trimmings that have been pinned in place so I can have a visual of how it will look once it's embellished.

Some of the beads have found their way around my studio, but the piecer said that wasn't an issue, she had the same spillage when she was cutting up the dresss. There is no other fabric in this creation besides the dress (and photos). There are two layers of Hobbs Heirloom Wool batting and it's making a faux trapunto look behind the embroidery designs as well as the photos.

Blogger is being goofy again, and flipping my photos -- turn your head sideways and place the hopping foot at the top to see what I see as I'm sitting at my machine. Of course the lighting isn't the best, but I'm loving the way the quilting is so dimensional. There's some tiny feathers in this 10 inch block.

And even tinier pebbles in the middle of this digitized design. I can hardly wait until it's finished and I can hang it in the studio to get really good photos. I wish I could see it when it was completed with all the embellishments and binding. Quilts have such a metamorphosis don't they?

So this is what is on my frame today and all of tomorrow. Hopefully it will be finished tomorrow night as the owner has an appointment to pick it up the following day -- the anniversary is next weekend and I know there will be one happy bride as she holds in her hands the memories of her special day.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Perserverance (and Prayer)

Monday. Who would have thought.

A wonderful Monday! Typically Mondays are met with a groan. Not today.

Woke up to the radio DJ talking about having an "attitude of gratitude" and things just went up from there.

Who would have thought "normality" would have been so long in the coming. So easy to want to give up, to be discouraged. Yet how many verses and numerous songs do I know that talk about "waiting on the Lord". Umm humm.

And then there was that little sermon yesterday that is still mulling around in my head (and my heart)....speaking on being "armed" for spiritual warfare....the topic "weapon of prayer"...certainly something to think upon today - good thing I took notes! (1) the frequency of prayer - always. (2) the diversity of prayer - general requests and specific requests (3) the power of prayer - praying in the spirit - when we don't know how or what to pray the Holy Spirit in us leads and guides (4) the watchfulness of prayer - being careful of sinful interruptions that separate us from asking God's forgiveness (5) the perseverance of prayer - that was sorta my keyword today - not giving up, but keepin' on keeping on. Prayer is hard work, but we grow when we are challenged to persevere. (6) our object of prayer (in the context of Ephesians 6:18-24) is to pray for the believers that they might be strong in spiritual battles and (7) the perspective of prayer - to be a bold witness. This has been a good series, and if you are interested in the real meat of the subject be sure and check out Calvary Houston and download the podcast to listen to on your computer or iPod.

Okay, so back to Monday. My Monday. Perseverance. Normality. Well, maybe not totally normal, but a new normal, a good start to a new routine. At least it felt more normal than I have experienced for the past three weeks with travel and guests and not having time to quilt for hire....but wait, I'm getting ahead of myself.

It's good to have goals, and it can be discouraging when there are road blocks to those goals...but instead of dwelling on the past failures or temporary detours and giving up, a little perseverance kicked in this morning -- by way of an alarm clock! Yep. I actually made it back to the Y today for my water aerobics class -- haven't been in over 3 weeks and it felt soooo good to be back in the water. Never mind the class is at 7 AM!! It's Texas, and the water was warm!

A great way to kick off my Monday, love the fact that I can shower at the Y after class and be ready to meet my day. Home by 8:30 AM and ready to face the longarm! And this time not for workshops or practice quilts or even my own project, nope. Time to re-establish normal and load a customer quilt! And boy did it feel good!

Of course, it helps to have a pretty quilt on the frame (grin) Even though these aren't my colors (purple, lime green, anything bright and bold) I really loved the batiks. And I loved the freedom. This little quilt is a shop sample and I had free reign to quilt as desired. My machine was really humming, it was timed perfectly and I couldn't have asked for better tension (yes, even on batiks front and back and with a batting that's not number one on my list).

Had to throw in a Karen's Special Butterfly for good measure. The quilt just needed it (grin). A few times I had to remind myself to perservere - especially when the phone rang or an email came through. I needed to remain focused and do my best to get this little quilt done today.

Ah, but interruptions are a way of life. Not all interruptions are bad, as in the case of today. A most pleasant interruption. New customers. A couple of ladies from across town had made an appointment to bring their quilts tops by today. When I say 'across town' you have to realize down here we mean an hour or so away, a real effort sometimes with the ever increasing traffic. These ladies multiplied. I had an appointment with two and four showed up on my door step. When quilters gather you know it's going to be a fun time.

And it was. I managed to squeeze in a lot of yaking while measuring and 'taking in' a quilt. Design ideas discussed. Thread chosen. Paperwork complete. Time to get back to quilting. Did I mention that it's always great to be listening to uplifting music while quilting? That or a good audible. Today it was music and I have to say I was very happy in feeling at home with a familiar routine of normal.

So what do you think? The lighting in my studio doesn't lend itself for good color sometimes, especially in the evening, but trust me, the colors on this baby are pretty. How could anyone go wrong with batiks! They are just yummy.

Ya'know, machine quilters are kinda weird in a way. We tend to look at the quilting more than the piecing...and when you have a busy quilt...well...the back is what really tells the story... so I took a bunch a'bunch of photos of the back. Can you tell I had fun today? If you double click on the photo I think it makes it bigger (grin)

Perseverance paid off this evening too. That and prayer (#2 SPECIFIC prayer)....seems on the way to my summer ladies Bible Study I found that my cell phone didn't want to work...said I wasn't activated or something silly. Now I'm a coward when it comes to going without my phone. I know, my ultimate trust is in the Lord, but the way I've figured it, He's provided me with common sense and a cell phone, so I never leave home without it. Hum...I don't want to miss Bible Study, but I don't want to travel into town without a phone....

Son #1 is my wireless cell-phone guy. No kidding. He works for one of the major companies. Used to be in sales but is now in customer service. I think he was good at both, he's a people person and he knows his stuff. Well....seems over the 4th of July weekend Son #1 and his cool buddies had gone to the hill country to do some river rafting. I get this email on my blackberry from one of his friend's number that is actually from my son informing me that his blackberry didn't make it down river, but that everyone else was alive and well so not to worry.

First thing that comes to my mind when my phone doesn't work is I bet Son #1's deceased phone has something to do with this. So I detoured on my way to church to his house. Chalk up another one to perseverance. Keep knocking till the answer comes!

Sure enough, he's home and on the phone and the internet with his company. Seems when they reactivated his number on a new phone that they actually pulled up my number instead of his (two blackberries on the same family account, simple error I guess). Twenty minutes later I'm be-boppin' down the highway to my study, knowing good and well that the only praise and worship I'd be hearing tonight was on the radio and from my own singing in route.

Yep, I arrive about 30 minutes late. To my utter surprise the entire parking lot is full, I couldn't find a place to park! What a wonderful problem to have. Surly there must be several things going on at the church tonight, couldn't all be women. As I find a place to park I see a gal heading towards the new sanctuary. Hum. I made that mistake last time - we still have our studies in the "old" worship center...I was glad I was late so I could direct her. Come to find out, this was her first time there. Who knows, perhaps in God's sovereignty He allowed me to be late so that this lady wouldn't have been discouraged, given up, and possibly gone home because she couldn't find the group ....who knows? All I know is that my perseverance to NOT give up and go home myself paid off. We had a record crowd of ladies for our summer series Bad Girls of the Bible. If you are local please check out Calvary Houston and join us. If not, wait for the CD's of the series, and/or check out other studies. I know you'll be blessed.

Tonight's study was on Tamar...I'll save some of the thoughts for another rambling...but have to say that it's amazing what you can learn by reading the stories in the Bible -- it's always applicable to our lives today. Throughout HIS story I am reminded of His mercy and grace AND forgiveness. Things keep reminding me to persevere and to "wait upon the Lord" - wherein lies my strength.

Yep. A good Monday. A great start to what promises to be a fantastic week. I mean, just look at Pixxie! Can't you tell she's glad to be back to work too!