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Friday, September 28, 2012


backyard at Sweet Briar Cottage
                                                To everything there is a season,                                               
                                                a time for every purpose under the sun.
                                                A time to be born and a time to die;
                                                a time to plant and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
                                                a time to kill and a time to heal ...
                                                a time to weep and a time to laugh;
                                                a time to mourn and a time to dance ...
                                                a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing;
                                                a time to lose and a time to seek;
                                                a time to rend and a time to sew;
                                                a time to keep silent and a time to speak;
                                                a time to love and a time to hate;
                                                a time for war and a time for peace.
                                                            ~ ecclesiastes 3:1~
Hello dear friends!   First I'd like to thank all of you kind and gentle souls that wrote to me to inquire about my absence and left me encouraging little notes.  Words will never express how very dear those words have meant to me.  
We have  arrived at  a new season of life at Sweet Briar Cottage.    My darling Ran has retired and now has taken up residence.  We have managed to squeeze him in, but it has taken a lot of organizing and disencumbering to reach the point where he now has a place for his necessities and treasures.   Retirement is like all important steps in life, first you analyze it from all angles, then you pray over it, then, like all major decisions you just take a giant leap of faith and do it!   Just like deciding to marry or to have children, if you get too analytical about it, logic would say it's impossible, but in the end you must follow your heart.  

Retirement means big changes in our lives.  For one, we will be as poor as church mice. But that's fine with me, because I've always loved the challenge of making a dime stretch into a dollar.  There's always something new to learn about being thrifty.  Do you know what I did yesterday?   I made my own vinegar from the peels left over from the apples I was freezing!   Now that I have a "mother" batch, I'll never have to buy cider vinegar again, as long as there's windfall apples in the world! 

Another exciting event for us, is that our house renovation is finally finished!   Above is a picture of our little cottage.   The first I've ever shown you of it taken from the front.  I had always hated the big ugly picture window and the aluminum siding  that was scratched and really just an eyesore.    The final touch was placing the "Sweet Briar" quarterboard  over the door.  Ran and I have scrimped and saved for years to  redo this little cottage.   Even before we owned it.  We always dreamed of a little cottage on Nantucket, but of course, some dreams are out of our grasp, but now we live in a little seaside town with or gray weathered shake Cape Cod and we are overjoyed.  Lesson learned - find a way to make your dreams come true, even if it is not the conventional way.  I had to cut down all of my roses so the workers wouldn't complain, but I can't wait until the grow back and travel up and over the roof again.   I'm sure Jeff, our contractor, will have a fit, but the cottage has to live up to it's name, so he'll just have to look the other way when he drives past!   Don't you think the front yard is crying out for a white picket fence?

My dear friends, this will be my final post.  I have discovered that life with Ran leaves very little free time!  I really admire all you gals that  home school, knit beautiful things, put three meals on the table AND blog.  Maybe time management is something I need to work on!   Goodness!   By the time I make breakfast, do the dishes, get cleaned up and dressed, make the beds, gather what needs to be gathered from the gardens, and  walk to the post office, my morning is over and it's time to start in on making lunch.  How do you all do it?  Anyway, I'll still leave my blog open, so that those that wish to communicate with me can leave a note in the comment section. Or you can e-mail me.  I will still try to leave comments on your blogs as often as I can find a spare moment.  

So I leave you with my final piece(es) of wisdom.  Never borrow trouble.  Always seek joy.  Never try to keep up with the Joneses, but look for contentment in your own little world.  Be encouraging, rather than discouraging.  Remember there's no such word as "can't".  Self-sufficiency is the only true path to freedom.  Jealousy is such a useless emotion, no one get richer, thinner, or happier by envying others.  Never complain about the cards you have been dealt in life, others have it much worse.  Speaking of which, there will always be someone that is more  talented, more beautiful, richer, thinner, luckier, than you, so you best just get on with learning to be content with "you" and your lot in life before the whole shooting match is over.  But most importantly always remember that this is a day which the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it! (Psalms 118:24)

                                      LOVE, PEACE, AND HAPPINESS TO ALL!