479. Hymns - glorious hymns about God's blessings. Showers of blessings, showers of blessings we need...mercy drops round us are falling, but for the showers we plead. So thankful for His tender mercies as I continue this journey to 1000 gifts.
480. Beautiful glorious pink sunrises through the pecan trees on the farm. Welcome morning!
481. This gorgeous tree is in full bloom...although Spring is still 6 weeks ago, this big tulip magnolia (magnolia lilifloria) is a JOY and sight to behold (downtown Perry, GA).
482. Sweet grandgirl Miss Madie wearing her new shirt Gran Jan made for her (see gift #477). She calls me "Jan Jan" instead of Gran Jan. Melts my heart.
483. I am loving the JOY of my embroidery machine - this is a little "dot font" monogram I put on a shirt for my sweet grandgirl!
484. A big beautiful LIVE OAK tree in Savannah, GA...the official state tree of GEORGIA and one of my favorite trees.
485. Sweet times with sixteen of the most wonderful women as we planned and prayed together at our annual women's ministry team retreat last weekend. God is so good to give JOY and FELLOWSHIP and KINDRED HEARTS as we shared around the table. We went to a neat place called New Ebenezer Retreat Center that was a delightful respite.
486. Bunk Beds, delightful bunk beds in our retreat cabin. It has been YEARS since I climbed a ladder to the top bunk. We laughed until the late night (early morning). Our youngest team member is 24, the oldest is 71. Pure therapy for the soul...girl time.
487. A long walk Saturday morning to the bluff of the Savannah River which is where the retreat center is located. Came across this old church that has been "in continuous worship of God since 1734." Amazingly serene.
488. Lunch on River Street in Savannah before we headed over to the Retreat Center!
(Melissa, Stephanie (our new pastor's wife), Julie, Joy, Debbie, Jennifer)
(Leia, Cindy, Teresa, Doris, Charlene, Kathy)
(Taneea, Lanie, Patsy, me)
489. Someone built seats and a pulpit overlooking the river bluff. I can just imagine sitting here for a glorious Easter morning sunrise service.
490. Sweet surprise visit from Jonathan and Jackson this past Saturday - another winter day that felt "just like Spring." And a visit to the farm always requires checking out the cows and chickens...
491. The sight of these daffodils blooming in my garden always brings me joy - God's glorious creation, gifts of His grace...the promise of a "new season."
492. I've enjoyed watching this beaver dam being built (about 2 miles from our home). My husband pointed it out to me recently. He knows how I enjoy all things "outside by God's creation."
493. Just finished a baby quilt yesterday for some dear friends awaiting their first grandchild. His nursery is a "John Deere" theme. Yes - yet another John Deer quilt...
494. Have I mentioned how much Travis Cottrell's music blesses me? Can you tell by this iTunes list on my computer? Thankful for his ministry.
495. Speaking of music, this is little Jackson sitting on the floor near his daddy in the back of our church's worship center listening to his Pop (my husband) leading worship...generational joy! Grace.
496. A wonderful chocolate covered sweet cream-filled heart-shaped donut - yes, I took a picture of my donut and got caught doing so. Didn't bother me one bit. Enjoyed every sweet bite.
497. Bulbs, bulbs, bulbs. Springtime cometh. Oh the joy in each of those little planters. It was all I could not to get one of everything. But I restrained. For now. It's still winter. But not for long!
498. My sister Jean would have celebrated her 52nd birthday this past January 18. I wrote a blog post about Jean's brief life here . Her daughter, my niece Amy, is so much like her. Amy was just 3 weeks away from her 2nd birthday when Jean died. She looks more like her momma every single day, especially in this picture...
499. And here is the silly side of me (I am actually silly on all sides) from a trip to Wendy's for lunch...it makes me smile every time I look at it, so I saved it. I love to laugh and be silly, which I hope will help me grow old gracefully. I really pray about that. That I may never lose the wonder of each day. Counting His gifts to 1,000 is sure helping me on the journey. Amen?
May God bless you and hold you close,