As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Gathering the Moments | May

May was the first full month in our new house. 

We began the month with scenes like this (note the boxes, bags, rolled up rugs, and lots of "stuff without a place)...

But as May drew to a close, we had unpacked many of the boxes and bags, unrolled our rugs, and begun to settle in a bit. Oh, we still have a ways to go, but it's beginning to feel like home.

One of the first little spaces I claimed was the coffee nook. (You know how serious we are about our coffee!) And the day we unpacked the Blue Willow and tucked it into a kitchen cupboard, it was a happy day. No more paper plates. (And opening the door and seeing those cups hanging makes me smile. It's the little things.) 

I called Kati my "homing pigeon," so named for her uncanny ability to recall what is in what box. "Where are the blue towels?" "Do you know where my pewter candlesticks are?" "How about the candles?" "Where is my school notebook?" "Batteries?" All located by Kati in short order! Her services were invaluable!

Yes, it's beginning to feel like home. 

On the first Sunday in May, we had our first "normal" Sunday afternoon at The Pineapple House. We put a 6-foot folding table at the end of our dining room table and we and our children and grandchildren gathered around a simple meal.

The next Sunday, Mother's Day, we had our first holiday gathering. And we have continued to have family and friends over...from dear friends who have come to share a cup of coffee and see our new home (my friend Joanne calls it the 25-cent tour ~smile~) Kati's first game party with her a gathering of our church fellowship for a potluck meal. 

We love to gather...and we love our new gathering place!

May also brought some special outings. 

My mom hosted a birthday celebration for her sister Robin (my aunt who seems too young to be my aunt). We went out for lunch, then back to Mom's for tea and treats!

My daughter-in-law Sarah invited us over for a lunch to celebrate the end of a successful school year. (No, we're not finished yet, but everyone else is and we celebrated too!) It was a beautiful day and the children had a grand time exploring the pond and watching tadpoles and bullfrogs. The afternoon ended with sweaty kids enjoying sherbet cones and sharing their highlights of the school year. Good times! 

Our homeschool book club ended the year with an international luncheon and discussion of the books the girls had read from countries around the world.

Bekah performed beautifully (a little mom-bragging!) at her spring piano recital. Her beautiful and talented teacher is her cousin (and my niece) Amy. It was a lovely night!

Also in May, we met buyers of our old home, The Farmhouse! You may recall that The Farmhouse adjoins the property of Ron's brother, which adjoins the property of Ron's sister, which adjoins the property of Ron's mother. (Did you get all that?) So, my sister-in-law invited the neighborhood, including the new owners of The Farmhouse, for strawberry shortcake...and invited us too! We were thrilled to meet them and to talk with them and to learn that they love the Lord which thrills our hearts! Again, we thank the Lord for His plan in all of the events of the past year, even the ones that were painful and uncomfortable. His plan is good and His mercies are unending!

We never know what a month (or a day!) will hold. My dear blog friend, Vee, could not have known that at the end of this month she would say good-bye to her beloved and that he would be "safely home," as she so tenderly wrote in an email to me. 

We were privileged to meet Vee and John when we visited Ryan and Sarah in Maine a few years ago. I already loved Vee through our online friendship, but we also fell in love with John immediately. He and Ron hit it off and they talked every bit as much as Vee and I did! He was warm and engaging. From Vee's words about him through the years, I know that he was a generous, loving, and hard-working man. He was certainly a gift to Vee (as she was to him) and his loss will be keenly felt in their home, their family, their church, and, yes, in the blogging community too. I continue to pray for God's grace for Vee. 

As I have "gathered the moments" of May, the lyrics of this old hymn play through my mind...
I don't know about tomorrow
I just live from day to day
I don't borrow from its sunshine
For the skies may turn to gray. 
I don't worry o'er the future
For I know what Jesus said
And today I'll walk beside Him
For He knows what is ahead. 
Many things about tomorrow
I don't seem to understand.
But I know Who holds tomorrow,
And I know Who holds my hand.


  1. Good to see a good long post and to have a nice "blog visit". Have been mising the regular posts as you get settled in your lovely new home. Love seeing little bits of your home and hearing that it is already well broken in to your gifts of hospitality. My prayers for Vee as she goes through this valley. Blessings to you and your family, Sharon D.

  2. It's all beautiful Cheryl, and I am coming to visit you soon! I'm delighted that you got to meet the owners of the Farmhouse. I'll miss that house, but this new one has stolen my heart just from your photos!

    I'm grieving for Vee, though knowing John is 'safely home.' Its hard to think of one without the other, isn't it?

  3. Sweet post Cheryl! So glad you are "settled" in. So many lively memories will be made in your new home. I too am sad for Vee!!

  4. Oh Cheryl, your post has left me in tears. We really don't know what the future will bring, but we know who does. We trust that He will hold Vee close and comfort her.
    You are really getting settled into your new home. It looks like you, Cheryl with all of your lovely primitive pieces. Your grands are really getting big. The babies have really changed. The tea sure looks lovely. And I think you should brag on Beckah, playing Bach and Chopin--how wonderful. Thank you for sharing such beautiful times. ♥

  5. This almost seems to be a house warming post, Cheryl! It certainly is heartwarming! You seem at home in your new house, and the icing on the cake is that your old house is filled with a family that loves the Lord. Indeed He gives us these little bonuses of joy, doesn't He? Thanks for including the words to the old hymn. A fitting ending.

  6. Another lovely post. So glad you are mostly settled in and able to gather with family and friends.

  7. Cheryl, your new home is so lovely and it is easy to tell you put so much love and thought into making it a haven for your sweet family. I always enjoy the photos of your gatherings! So much activity and the food always looks heavenly! Thank you so much for sharing your post about meeting Vee and John...I don't remember reading it before. What a joy have that meeting in your treasure box of memories!

  8. Cheryl,
    Your home and family look so welcoming. It's encouraging to me that amidst all of the bustle of setting up a new home, you are so intentional about stopping and celebrating the moments with your family. I needed to be reminded of that. When I'm on a project, I am so focused that I neglect the moments. It appears that you are a very authentic person and that you are comfortable with people seeing you and your home as you really are; not all put together and perfect. When I see your lovely photos, I can tell your sweet spirit flows into your home and your family. Thank you for these glimpses of a life well lived and for the encouragement.

  9. I'm so happy to see that your new house is already broken in with great gatherings and love! How fun to meet those who purchased your home, too, and to know that they love our Lord. I didn't realize that you had met dear Vee and John in person. Sweet. Love the words of the song at the end of your post. May the Lord continue to bless your new home and household!

  10. Your Pineapple house looks like a warm and welcoming Home!!! So cool that you met the new owners of your Farmhouse. Thanks for the sweet words about Vee and her John. She is in our thoughts and prayers.

  11. So glad you are settling into your new home. I know it is a blessing to you. And how wonderful to meet the people who bought the Farmhouse and find out they love the Lord as you do. God's hand is in everything and His timing is perfect.

    I too have been praying for Vee along with my Bible Study. So sad. We don't understand why but we know we have a loving Savior who does all things well. She and her family are in my thoughts frequently.

  12. Your new home is taking shape beautifully, and how blessed you are to have family from several generations all so close. Your family photographs are what really spoke to me of 'home' today.

  13. What a beautiful May wrap up! The song at the end of your post says it all... Seeing and sharing your life from a distance is such a pleasure. Your house fits your family beautifully :)


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