FOTD, April 27, Hopeful

As spring really begins to open in the Midwest, there is an old adage that says “plant nothing until Mother’s Day”. Even though the days are warmer, the nights are still quite chilly and I think some of the bush flowers are still in “hopeful” mode that it will be warm soon.

Miniature white azalea bush

Last fall I had to trim my lilac bushes as they was getting into the cable wires going to the house. It was well over 12′ high. I was concerned it would not bloom this year since we cut it back so much…but it did…carefully and hopefully.

Other plants are showing their hopes as they creep out from under bushes or pop out from between blocks, determined to grow.

The purple flower goes with the green vine and I have no idea what it is called. It was in a flower pot of various plants that broke at the end of summer…still, it was determined to live. The lily is from an easter lily that I was given last spring and I forgot that I had laid it on the ground. The dog got into it in the fall and looky here, its trying to show its beauty. Nature has a resilience that people should learn from her. Stay strong, stay true to yourself, and beauty will come.

With this beauty and strength, we must also be kind. Kindness has a strength that shows everyone of its ability to breakdown most any wall that is willing to receive love in kindness.

All of God’s creation understand kindness. We should use it more often with each form of His creation.

The Mighty Mississip’

Those of us from the south fully understand what the Mississippi River can do during hurricane season where it empties into the Gulf of Mexico. But here in the Midwest, we don’t worry so much about hurricanes…we worry about snowmelt. These first pictures are from last summer at the bandstand down at the river where we have weekly outdoor concerts.

But this year is one of the flooding years. They don’t always look this bad but this year may set a record. If you can see that white dotted line across the center of the water…that is the tops of the white chairs from above and the current water level is almost to the bandstand floor level. The water is not due to crest until Monday. The concerts may be late this year.

Picnic anyone?

I was not able to take a picture because I was driving across the bridge, but they were cutting the grass of the baseball field. The building in the thirds set of pictures behind the Bandits sign is the baseball stadium and they have floodgates around it so the stadium stays dry. But I chuckled at the irony of them cutting the grass.

Always remember that life can throw you curve balls. Some you get to hit out of the way and some knock you down. But God is always there by your side to help you either way. Feel His love surround you and reflect His kindness.

FOTD, April 23

Yesterday was Earth Day and true to Midwest spring, all earth type weather was present. It snowed, it rained, the sun shone, the wind blew…and its flooding. Welcome spring.

While I love all the seasons, I think spring is my favorite, even with minor allergy issues. Everything is waking up from winter’s nap and stretching their arms toward the warmth of the sun. A favorite spring flowering tree is the Red Bud. this particular tree is across the street from my house and seems to dare the evergreen from stopping it to show its beauty.

As you look closely at the branch, you see clusters of small flowers, each beautiful in its own way.

Flowers popping out in spring are great reminders to us all that there is life, beauty and hope to be shared wherever we are, regardless of how you feel.

Let us always remember that there are ways to bloom to share our beauty within. Let us bloom and always be kind as we share our inner beauty.

First Spring Walk, FOTD

Many of you who read my blog, know that we were hit with a devasting storm the first week of April. We are still cleaning up downed tree from the 90 MPH straight line wind. I was reminded today, on my first official walk and photo fun of spring 2023, that God is always in charge. While some homes were damaged(including mine), there were no deaths from this straight line beast. The small tornado that touched down at the same time about 1/2 mile from us, did however take a life. Spring storms can not be taken lightly here in the US. Last week, I noticed my neighbor had lost an lovely ornamental fruit tree. It was super sad to me as it was in full bud. But today as I walked by the pile of debris ready for the tree service people to pick up I saw the buds had opened, still showing their beauty, even though torn from the tree and laying on the ground. Spring still came.

Mother Nature has powerful storms and a beauty she shares in all of the nature that surrounds us. Below are some of the pictures I took today on for first walk of spring. I hope you enjoy them and are enjoying the spring in your area.

My neighbors pear tree is beautiful but while I was at the stoplight by the park, I got rained on by magnolia flower petals and had to go takes some pictures.

The flowers in my yard are just opening up and I wanted to share their happy faces as Cee reminds us with her FOTD challenge.

As we begin the warmer weather, where the beauty of flowers begins to make us smile, let us not forget the kindness they are reflecting with their beauty and always be kind.


Periodically we need to truly understand where our strength comes from….is it our own making or are our burdens doing their magic work from God in making us strong.

This morning’s devotion with Oswald Chambers assured me that God is always with us carrying the heavier part of our burden as we grow in strength to see the joy of His profound love.

The burden that God places on us squeezes the grapes in our lives and produces the wine. Oswald Chambers

While we don’t enjoy any burdens we know they do have a purpose in proving His love for us.

For His hand is never far from us, filling is with the hope that proves His love.

No power on earth or in hell can conquer the Spirit of God living within the human spirit; it creates an inner invincibility. Oswald Chambers

So rest assured that whatever burden you mat be facing today, God id holding you hand and He will carry you through to the shining glory of His love for you.

Have a great day and a beautiful weekend. And always remember to be kind, even when it is really hard. For kindness shows your inner beauty of love.

Reverent Sadness

Today, for Christian belief, is Maundy Thursday, or Holy Thursday of Holy Week. It is the day commemorating the Washing of the Feet(Maundy) and the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with his disciples right before he was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane.

This night was a very long and painful night for Jesus, not because his torture had started but because of the betrayal and desertion by his followers, the disbelief of Jewish leaders, and the weight of what was to come.

The following day was Friday. We call it Good Friday, not that it was a happy day but because Jesus willingly suffered and was crucified on the cross for atonement of sin. But we must fully understand its purpose. My devotion this morning from Oswald Chambers says it where I can understand it best so I share that with you.

The Cross of Christ is the revealed truth of God’s judgment on sin. Never associate the idea of martyrdom with the Cross of Christ. It was the supreme triumph, and it shook the very foundations of hell. There is nothing in time or eternity more absolutely certain and irrefutable than what Jesus Christ accomplished on the Cross— He made it possible for the entire human race to be brought back into a right-standing relationship with God. He made redemption the foundation of human life; that is, He made a way for every person to have fellowship with God. Oswald Chambers

The cross was not something that man did to Jesus, it was the reason Jesus came in the first place. To redeem our souls. We can’t think of the cross as a cross of man, for it is a cross of God…for man because His love for man is so strong, even when we don’t deserve it.

The heart of salvation is the Cross of Christ. The reason salvation is so easy to obtain is that it cost God so much. The Cross was the place where God and sinful man merged with a tremendous collision and where the way to life was opened. But all the cost and pain of the collision was absorbed by the heart of God. Oswald Chambers

    Let us never forget the extent that God went to to assure that we could remain in His care and ultimately join with Him on that heavenly day with the multi-million voice choir as we praise His name.

    As you go through these next few days of the Easter season, remember the unfathomable kindness God has shown us and try to show kindness to others.

    The Lion Continues

    Our area of the midwest is under sever weather warning…again. The first band that came through at 9 a.m. had to have had 60-80 mph winds, trees were broken like twigs. Mother Nature can have a really ugly side and I hope all are safe from this latest storm front. I am enclosing a few shots of the trees down at my house – proving that I am glad I have no trees of my own.

    This was a huge fir tree that snapped about 20′ high. It came completely across the alleyway and I had to move some branches out of the way to get my car in the safety of the garage in case the storms this afternoon and evening are worse. Fortunately, there was no hail in this wind or there would have been broken windows in my sunroom. My neighbor totally lost their prefab sunroom in their backyard.

    This picture looks toward the other direction of the ally. A total of three trees were knocked down crossing it.

    The houses across the street are on a rise and they were hit harder by the wind. This tree seemed to have twisted before it gave way and it was a sizable tree.

    I always close with a reminder that even in chaos we can always be kind. I got the chance to interact with a neighbor who has never liked me, and we had a nice conversation. Sometimes tragedy brings people together to find a peaceful ground.

    So always be kind even when others are not kind to you.

    It messes with their head.

    April 1st, Favorite Color

    Citysonnet has posted her photo challenge list for the month of April. I think that I can honestly say that, even thought I love shades of blue, a soft yellow is probably my favorite. It is such a happy color. My kitchen is small so I painted it a creamy yellow to make the room lighter and to give the feel of a happy place.

    I decorated this grapevine wreath to add more yellow accents to the room. Yellow always reminds me of the many bright colors of yellow flowers, happy flowers. Below are a few of mine from last year – can’t wait to see them this year.

    In closing, I remind you of the beauty and happiness of kindness. Share it often.