Great Words to Ponder


Great quotes

Words are powerful.  I have been thinking about this quote and wanted to share it with you.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.       Aristotle

It is important what we do.  What are you doing right now that will become the habit that will form you?  Are we thinking of who we want to become 20, 30, 40 years from now?

What a Sursee to practice now who we want to be.

I want to be more like Jesus, therefore I need to practice that now, today and then some.  Who do you want to look like?  Are you practicing that?  Do tell…

Read through the Bible in a Year

Whew…things have been fun and crazy and busy around here.  I purposefully pursued Christmas with the family and decided to put the blog on the back burner- BOTBB-

So as I perch here on the edge of 2013 and peer into the blank wildness of 2014, I am reminded of one thing.   It is almost time to start my  One Year Chronological Bible. I keep wanting to write about this, but other things press in and I think, later I will tell all.  Well it is later, and I want you to know this is the best, best, best way to read through the Bible.

It begins on January 1st in Genesis 1:1 and ends up on Dec 31 in Revelation 22:21.  IMG_3606

Reading through the Bible this way has been life changing for me.  A friend had recommended it to me a few years ago,  saying it was like reading a novel, and I thought, sure.  But, she was right!

As you read through David’s life, you also read through the Psalms he wrote.  So beautiful to see how these interact with each other.

The letters of Paul are interwoven throughout the reading of Acts.  The Gospels are all together, so sometimes you read an account of Jesus healing someone or performing a miracle three times.

When I read through some of the Old Testament books, they sprang to life as I saw God’s faithfulness to His people or read about His reminders to be holy, over and over.  I saw new patterns in passages that were familiar to me.  IMG_3611

The other aspect I like about reading through the Bible this way is the community I feel with other gals who are reading it, too.  Sometimes we text each other if we have questions or comments.  Sometimes we just talk about an amazing verse we read that pierced our hearts.  I like sharing with these gals what the Lord is teaching me.

I have tried reading through the Bible before with a reading plan and always failed.  Mostly because I got behind in my reading and then gave up.  I also didn’t like how you read in the Old Testament, New Testament and a Psalm…seemed disjointed to me.  This Bible has nice reading chunks that are very doable and has the date in the Bible so you always know where you are.  And when I do fall behind,  I play catch up over the weekend.  IMG_3608

I really started seeing the flow of scripture in my reading and how it all related to one another over the year.  It really was like reading a novel, with real people and a real God who loved me and was showing me how He has always been pursuing me.

I bought the Tyndale One Year Chronological Bible on Amazon.  With two day shipping, you could start with me on Jan 2!  Get some gal pals to read with you and form a community.  You will love it!IMG_3614

You will see the Word of God in a new way and fall more in love with Him.  What a great SURSEE and a great way to start 2014!  Ready?


Thank you, dear Paige, for introducing me to this wonderful Bible!

What I am Reading Now :: A Fine Romance

A Fine Romance by Susan Branch



A wonderful read


Oh my, is this ever a delightful book.  Now you have to understand I am a Susan Branch-o-phile.  I have her calendars, scrapbooking supplies, garlands, stickers and more.   I have even been to Martha’s Vineyard and stood across the street from her white clapboard house, willing her to come out.

Susan, are you home?

Susan, are you home?


Susan Branch Backyard

I heard the chairs calling my name, “Leslie, Leslie!”

I also longingly looked in her back yard and thought for a moment, I might steal a nap in her Aidorondack chairs….but I didn’t and I am still in the depths of despair over it.

Maureen, my partner in crime  in Susan's driveway

Maureen, my partner in crime, in Susan’s driveway

But back to the book.  This is a wonderful travel diary of Susan Branch and her hubby, Joe, as they travel in style across the Atlantic and then all over  England. She fills it with her winsome watercolors and stories about the charm and Britishness of all she sees.


I want to paint like this!

I loved how she took her paints and her knitting and sometimes found time to knit by a pub fireplace or paint on a dreary rainy day while she waited out the bad weather.


she writes in her own handwriting- not kidding!

The book is filled with her wonderful watercolors and illustrations and chatty conversation.

You feel like you are on the trip with Susan, and she is such a good travel companion.  She talks of what she sees and tastes and lets you know all her thoughts. I wanted to go on the  trip with the Bear after reading the book.

Susan talks of  ideas and thoughts and captures your imagination.  I had to force myself to read in bite size pieces because I didn’t want to finish it!  She includes recipes and travel plans and maps and all that you need to go on your own trip of trips.


recipe for butter cookies

So look over here on her website and purchase for your favorite gal-pal.  It will be a SURSEE she won’t easily forget.  Or make sure you put it on your wish list or gal, why not go out and get it right now!  SURSEE yourself!

Do you like reading travel literature, and if so, what are your favorites? Do share.

Look what I saw on vacation

Traveling is always great fun.  Experiencing new cities, towns, views.  Peeking into gardens, seeing what grows.  Eating the yumminess of the region.

I also like the signs you see. Here are a few that I want to share with you from my recent trip to Charleston.

love this tile!
This was cemented into the threshold of a new store on the main drag.  I love the romance of the old five and dime with the wooden floors and the waft of popcorn and all things trinkety to see.

When was the last time you have seen this sign?  It was posted in a stable, where the beautiful draft horses that pull the charming carriages, are kept  I guess the chicken we saw in the hay was this attack chicken.  I am scared!

Who knew this fun fact?  The word Pecan is from an Indian word meaning a “Tough Nut to Crack.”
Love learning the meanings of words.

And here is what the gum package declared:

Practice safe breath, please!
Last sign, in front of a floral shoppe.  (love saying shoppe, sounds so British and elegant)
I also love chalkboards!
I couldn’t agree more!

So can you share a SURSEE that you saw in a sign?  Wouldn’t that be a fun contest to have?

Words For the Times We Are In

Headlines crying out. My eyes crying tears as I read stories about Boston.  How do we live in this world, Lord?  How do we encourage others?

Then I read this, this morning, and it is rolling around in my head. Thought you might like to have these words roll around in yours as you go about your day.

In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation
Psalm 5:3
But I will sing of your strength, 
in the morning I will sing of your love;
For you are my fortress,
my refuge in times of trouble.
O my Strength, I sing praise to you;
you, O God, are my fortress,  my loving God.
Psalm 59:16-17
I sought the LORD, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant;
their faces are never covered with shame.
Psalm 34:4-5
The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them;
he delivers them from all their troubles.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
Psalm 34: 17-18

Thank you, Lord, for David, who knew fear and cried out to You, knowing You hear.  Thank you for giving us his words to ponder when things are crazy in this world. Words that direct us to sing and remember He is our Fortress. No matter what.


Happy New Year!

Here it is 2013, and here I am thinking about resolutions and plans and schemes.

Boxed up Christmas today.  Felt good and it looks great.  Something about the year changing makes me want to get Christmas down and put up.  Did it, check.

Started my new Ann Voskamp devotional.

Started my Chronological Bible again.  Genesis 1:1.  Love it.  Love reading through the Bible like a novel. More about that later.

Bear and I are starting a project that I gave to him for a Christmas present.  The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.  Starting today.  Has 12 chapters and each chapter has an overall theme with smaller goals in it.  We each have a journal and will read the book and then discuss and try to work on the goals for the month together.  I am excited.  More on this project later. (Imagine a picture of the book here.  Can’t get my Iphoto to work.  Ugh.)

Just had to check in and write- another goal for this year.  Plus, Number 2 son is blogging, too.  And he said he wrote something today.  So, I decided I needed to write, also.

Looking forward to 2013 and all that the Lord has for me.

Thanking Him for the gift of writing and the sursees waiting to be discovered this year.