Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Newsletter - 11/1/11

Hello Dear Friends!

Note that today's date is all ones. Makes me think something very special should happen today.

Randal Holding Carrot Cake
We celebrated Randal's 57th birthday last weekend.  He wanted to stay at home and that surely worked well since one of our friends began the celebration early when she brought a card over and two scones from a new bakery that opened nearby.  Randal had his first scone when we moved to this area and decided quickly that he loved them.

On his actual birthday, one of our neighbors brought him a Mexican dish, called John Wayne, and also a huge carrot cake with candles.  How sweet (literally)!  This woman can really cook and her husband is grand at delivery!  Randal loves Mexican food and he'd been wanting a carrot cake for his birthday from a bakery an hour away. We were going to be over there 5 days after his birthday so he planned on a late birthday cake .... while God planned one on the exact day. Cancel the one from the bakery which doesn't have LOVE as an ingredient.

Another neighbor couple dropped by singing a duet of the birthday song that even had harmony in it.  We were both wowed by the performance on our front porch.  They brought a card and a tall glass container of mixed nuts with a special wire-hinged lid.  They had just returned from a trip to Italy, so maybe the container was from there.  Randal loves nuts.  Do you get the picture that everybody knows Randal loves food? :-)

The cherry-on-top part of the day was a 2-1/2 hour conversation with our son.  That's always a special treat.  He always has a variety of topics to talk about and we learn so much when he fills us in with his latest news and interests.

© Donna L. Watkins - Monarch on Butterfly Bush
I had mentioned not seeing many Monarch Butterflies after migration was supposed to have begun. I guess they were a bit late because we're still seeing them passing through our habitat. They love the white butterfly bush. I was out one day and there were seven of them on the bush besides a Fritillary butterfly.

We've added three more large perennial verbena plants to a spot for the butterflies. They are not the only ones who like verbena.  The Purple Homestead Verbena (Verbena canadensis 'Homestead') attracts a variety of butterflies and bees, but especially birds. Its sweet nectar beckons to hummingbirds and orioles, while its seeds bring in finches, swamp sparrows, cardinals, juncos and other wild birds. More info on this verbena.

One night I was reading in the bedroom and I heard a dog barking right outside the screened porch, but it also sounded like a cat sound. It was very loud and certainly made me think something was terribly wrong outside, so I went out and turned on the light to see the barking dog chasing a cat. However, the dog turned out to be a Red Fox because after he chased the cat around the corner of the house, he came back to the area where we put our scraps for the wildlife. I walked out on the deck and he looked up at me while I spoke to him a welcome greeting. I seemed to remember that foxes bark, but went online to match up the sound. Hear a red fox bark. I've seen the Gray Fox here but not the Red Fox so that is exciting for us. Read more about red foxes.

© Donna L. Watkins - Ruby-crowned Kinglet in Migration
Five years ago I was grateful to have some migrating birds come through and begin to consume the cottony scale problem we had on our pyracantha (aka Firethorn) bushes. I identified it as a Pine Warbler at the time, but have since discovered they were Ruby-crowned Kinglets.

It's been a few years and this year we have cottony scale again ... and yes! ... we have the kinglets back to consume them. How amazing!  View a short video clip.

Be sure to read my article about Cottony Scale and Ruby-crowned Kinglets. Included is a list of birds that eat scale insects. What a joy to use birds instead of chemicals for gardening problems.

After my computer crash, I had mentioned my decision to take three days a week off of this computer to keep it from being an issue of frustration. Previously the only way I knew to manage my time was to spread it throughout my days, mixing God time, household work, garden time, my job, etc. into each of the six days.

After I took the first step I found that God made all things possible. I've tuned into the Holy Spirit to know what tasks I need to continue doing and what to eliminate. When I am on the computer, it goes so much more smoothly and quickly. I don't seem to have the glitches which makes it a joy to enjoy my work.

In this age of time, the computer seems to be the device that steals so much family time away from real relationships, families and individual lives in general. Physiologically, it's not good for the eyes and working on one definitely doesn't burn many calories. For some reason I seem to absorb these types of realities and grieve over them in my spirit, so all of that was going around inside me with the subject of computers. The crash helped me to make some decisions to continue to streamline what I want my life to look like.

Quite a few folks told me that I'd not be able to take that much time off and get my work done. I've been amazed that I'm much more focused after having days off the computer. Since I know my time is limited, I batch things and find that saves a LOT of time. I do have to push back email to a snail mail mode, but it's still a great way to stay in touch with special friends and you, my subscriber friends. I've also received emails telling me it's great news since they were inspired to not be so fastidious about email response.

Working with my photos, writing, doing my blog, working in our corporation, and staying in touch with friends is all fun. My pace has been purposely slowing for many years and this is yet another step down.  Not that I don't stay busy, but it's not the scurry-worry busy that I lived in 11 years ago.  I meditate often on the pace of Jesus and desire to emulate that instead of what today's expectations are of a day's worth.

I began this new journey at the beginning of the month and I've had 13 days off the computer in October.

© Donna L. Watkins - Elegant Stinkhorn (Mutinus Elegans) Mushroom
I mention all of this because I have heard many others frustrated trying to manage their computer time. When I compare some of the things I was doing to what I really want life to look like, I realized that many tasks that we believe we "need to do" are not necessary.  Maybe it's a feeling of importance that keeps us trying to juggle more tasks than we should.  I know one thing ... it's not God wanting it to be that way.

This gives me more time for things that feed my spirit.  More time with God and His Creation that reflects the wonders of Who He is.  More time to see the little things like this fungus at the edge of a trail.  It's a Elegant Stinkhorn (Mutinus Elegans) mushroom.  My friend, Diane, the mushroom guru, tells me that chocolate looking stuff attracts flies that will then carry the spores off to new locations.

We were created to fellowship with God in the Garden.  Even if our garden of life doesn't look much like a garden now, with some determination and lots of weeding, we can make it what we truly desire it to be deep in our hearts.  And that is where God wants to see us arrive because He's always standing at the door and knocking.  I have a major task to move my healing in the spirit realm to the physical realm, but now that I see the Light, it's only a matter of time.

One of my fun things on an off day was to begin to set up a bird buffet on our deck. I've done it as a front porch buffet before since I sat at the dining room most of winter to work. Having the covered roof makes it nice for the birds in bad weather and keeps the seed dry. It also provides a safe place for bathing in the heated birdbath.

Beginnings of a Winter Bird Buffet on Deck
A Side View From the Breakfast Area Window
This winter I will be 'stationed' at the breakfast area since I intend to bring in my chaise lounge chair from the screened porch to enjoy the solar warmth of that south-facing window. So I'll be able to see the bird feeders and the deck buffet on my God breaks throughout the day. We had a table with a hole in the center, but have never had an umbrella for it so I used an old umbrella that somebody gave us.

I'm now waiting for the birds to figure out what's under that. I'll let you know in the next issue of this newsletter how it's working. By then I'll have thistle seed added to the buffet and the heated birdbath. The birdbath will put on the deck rail since the squirrels and night animals use it also. I don't want them on the table. All the foods there are not preferred by squirrels (safflower seeds, thistle/niger seed, and mealworms).

Much of my time is now spent meditating on God's Word.  Mulling over new teachings and resting in His love. 3 John 1:2 says, "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. (KJV)" Somewhere our soul (mind, will and emotions) are not lining up with the spirit. God wants us well.  I have believed in healing and in my spirit I've known I "will be" healed ... but what my spirit is trying to tell me is to ASK, SEEK, and KNOCK (Mt. 7:7).  Passivity is not God's way.  Yes, I can live joyfully and at peace with these diseases ... but it's not God wanting me to do that.

I Peter 2:24 says, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. (KJV)" I've read that Scripture many times, but as we tend to do with Scripture that doesn't seem to be "happening," we modify the Word to fit our current beliefs so our souls feel okay with it all. But at the same time our spirits are thirsty and our bodies are dying.

Great Place to Meditate on The Word - Our Screened Porch
Either we believe the Word or we don't and I've always said I do believe the Word is the inspired Word of God. So I've been working on these verses that have never quite gotten filed into my belief system because the teaching I've had for so many years taught me something different than what the Word said.

Now I'm seeking God to get these unfiled bits of the Bible broken down and assimilated and that's taking a lot of renovations to my soul, so it lines up with the spirit and then my physical body will line up with what I believe. We are Spirit, Soul and Body. If you've been battling a long time with sickness and disease and nothing else is working, you might consider this series: "Spirit, Soul and Body" by Andrew Wommack. We've had to pray through some of the information, but your spirit will come alive when it is hit with Truth, as long as you don't allow your mind to rule over your spirit's discernment.

Randal and I have finished this series and have gone on to other series on the website as God leads. It's all loaded with Scriptural backup. It's not been easy to have our faith shifted around, but since we made a commitment to make Him first two years ago this month, we have had to be willing to allow God to tear down foundations built on sand and built new ones built on The Rock.

We had wrong thinking in many areas which is why Christianity seemed confusing at times. Justifying it by making God somebody that we don't totally understand, is not the way to go. I've been there and done that to justify things not happening in my life.  I am no longer willing to be satisfied living my Christian life that way.  We are now willing to dig into our very heart and spirit to determine what gives more Life, which is what Jesus promised us with His work on The Cross ... as the Bible says, "The Truth will set you free."

Wish you could come sit with me on the porch (dressed warm).  I'll make a large pot of herbal tea while we chat about the beauty and love of our Father!

If you enjoy this newsletter ... share the website with somebody else.  Maybe you know of somebody who needs something in this issue.  There's a "Share This" option on the right side.  Thanks!

Love and Hugs,

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The photo(s) and article are copyrighted. You may use either of them if you include the following credit and active link back to this website: © 2011 Donna L. Watkins - This article was reprinted with permission from TheNatureInUs.com. The link to use is: www.TheNatureInUs.com.

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