Monday, March 25, 2013

Proverbs 31: 22-23

  Marriage Moment


22 - She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.

23 - Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.


According to, a 'tapestry' is:

a fabric consisting of a warp upon which colored threads are woven by hand to produce a design, often pictorial, used for wall hangings, furniture coverings, etc.
To me, then, verse 22 talks about a woman producing her own home furnishings and her own clothing, or at least knowing how to make her own.  When I was in jr. high school, there were two courses that the young women took (amongst all the academics):  sewing and cooking.  The young men took shop.  I know, sounds archaic, but that was a different time.

Sometimes DIY is a necessity, sometimes a matter of choice.  I'm not making a judgment.  If I need a loaf of bread for supper, would I rather pull bowls and spoons out of the cabinet, ingredients out of the refrigerator, measure, pour, mix, rise, punch, rise, bake and clean up or run down the block to the dollar store and grab a loaf?  That store-bought loaf would be back in my kitchen before you could finish reading this paragraph!

But what if weather prevented getting to a store?  What if there was a trucker's strike and already made goods in stores were sparse?  I'd surely want to have supplies on hand and the ability to make whatever I needed.  Unfortunately, I do not remember the source of this next comment, but like "they" say, "It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark".  Now that DIY was a necessity.  There were no Home Depots in Bible times.

Verse 23 shows that a P31 married woman helps to build and protect the good reputation of her husband.  I believe this is from a standpoint of doing good to someone you love rather than saying women are not as good as men.  But I'll save that particular debate for another day.

It doesn't mean that you go down to city hall, meet with the mayor, and tell him or her that your husband is a good guy that the mayor should really get to know.  (Although wouldn't we like to be a fly on the wall at THAT meeting!)

But when you love someone, you want to help that person succeed...whether it be in school, business, enjoying their hobbies, or developing their talents.  As someone you love honorably fulfills his or her obligations, they will be well thought of by their friends and associates.

I make no judgments about whether or not people actually do these things for themselves; that is not my place.  Everyone's circumstances and abilities are different.  I'm just saying the ability to make certain necessities and creature comforts can be a valuable skill.

I'll go first.  My husband returned to college recently, after a 20 year break.  He is taking basic classes now, and will major in anthropology.  He hates math, and thinks he cannot do it.  (I say that is half the problem right there.).  But since my degree is in Finance, and I've tutored math from a jr high to a post-graduate level, I am happy to help him

There are so many DIY skills that I need to improve ... I could go on for days.  I can make clothing for my family (with a pattern).  I can cook well enough to prevent starvation.  The point is, I'm not going to run out of things to work on anytime soon.

But say we are talking about developing new skills.  I would like to know how to make my own soap.  I don't really have a "good reason" for it, but it's something I've always wanted to try.

What about you?  What DIY skill would you like to develop or improve?

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Sneak Preview

Three days ago, I participated in Alex J. Cavanaugh's Blogfest, "The Top Ten Movie Countdown".  I visited and commented on dozens of blogs and got a crazy number of comments here on the Back Porch.  Seriously; more than I've ever had on a post before.  I'm still trying to respond to all of them.

The month of April represents two rather large commitments I've made to writing.  The first is the "Blogging from A to Z April Challenge", also co-hosted by the Ninja Captain Alex.  (See the button in the right sidebar.)  The premise is to write on April 1 (a Sunday) on a topic beginning with the letter "A".  Then, on each weekday of the month, write on a subject with the rest of the letters of the alphabet, at the rate of one per day.  There are literally HUNDREDS of bloggers signed up for this month-long event.

So, Mina Lobo at Some Dark Romantic and David Macauley at Brits in the USA, came up with the brilliant idea to have a reveal hop where people could preview the themes they were going to use for the A to Z Challenge.  

I went through several possibilities for themes, but (think) I have settled on:


I have loved acting my whole life.  I started out college in a Musical Theatre Program.  But I had self-esteem issues and could not bring myself to actually audition, which considering the line of work, could be a drawback.  At the end of my first year, I was told that I should find something else to do, because I had no future in live theatre.  And I listened to them.  I switched to "business" (which pleased my mother to no end), lost heart for studying a subject that did not fulfill me, and wound up dropping out of college ... for 10 years.

Every job I got, my mother had her brother give me the "you need to do something more important than that" speech.  (They weren't being intentionally mean.)  Finally I had a job in the International Department of a local bank.  I thought, finally they will approve.  *vile buzzer sound indicating a negative*  I decided I would not be able to progress much until I finished a degree, so I went back to college, and eventually did obtain a BS in Finance (magna cum laude).

One afternoon, I saw a sign up on a wall, telling of auditions for the play, "The Importance of Being Earnest".  I thought, "I should go do that."  Then I saw that the auditions were that afternoon.  Immediately my mind came up with all sorts of reasons why NOT to audition:  it's too soon, I'm not prepared...blah, blah, blah.  Then I figured, what did I have to lose?  If I sucked and the answer was "no", I'd be no worse of than I was at that moment.

I went.  I auditioned.  I got the part of Lady Bracknell.

Over the next 5-6 years I was involved with about 25-30 plays.  Half of these probably were acting, the rest in various tech positions (light or sound board operators, stage hands, directing one time, etc).  I still remember sitting at a light board one night before the show and having the stage manager come and hand me an envelope.  "What is this," I asked.  She responded, "Your check."  I was stunned.  "YOU MEAN I GET PAID FOR THIS???"  How cool is THAT?!?!?!

So for the letters of the alphabet have play titles in which I have acted or teched, etc., I will write about those plays.  On letters where I have not been involved with a play, I will write about one in which I would like to be involved, and/or maybe ideas for writing plays.

We'll all be finding out in about a week.  Hope to see you there!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Top Ten Movie Countdown Blogfest

Here are my top ten movies, in no particular order:

1.  Henry V (Brannagh version)

2.  Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

3.  Star Trek 2009

4.  Red

5.  Roman Holiday

6.  Galaxy Quest

7.  So I Married an Axe Murderer

8.  Stargate

9.   Lethal Weapon IV

10.  Miss Potter

What movies are on YOUR list?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Lucky or Blessed?

Let's Get Social Sunday  
It's been a rough couple of weeks (husband away helping his mother after her husband had an operation, our Mamaw passed, I got a cough that would not (and hasn't yet) gone away.  Sounds like I need to remember my blessings.  So here goes:

1.  My faith in God.

2.  My family.

3.  My education.

4.  The roof over my family's heads.

5.  A working vehicle.

6.  Living in a small town in Kentucky.

7.  The wonders of nature.

8.  The beauty of art.

9.  The pleasure of a good story.

10.  My continuing ability to learn.

11.  Hugs.

12.  Blog interaction.

13.  Good food prepared with love.
14.  My marriage.

15.  Good music.

16.  Prayer.

17.  That I have an endless supply of blessings.

This list is by no means exhaustive.  I will probably blog more in the future.  I may well elaborate on the blessings listed here in forthcoming posts.  

I call them blessings to acknowledge God as the source of all good in my life.  But to give the day a nod, I used 17 and colored the text green for St. Patrick!

So am I lucky .... or blessed?  I'm both!

I'd love to see a blessing you are lucky to have in your life in the comments!  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

National Wormhole Day

Acting Balanced

First of all, HAPPY BIRTHDAY EINEY!  In honor of Einstein's Birthday, I am participating in the National Wormhole Day blog hop hosted by Stephen Tremp, Laura Eno, and Luanne Smith (not to be confused with "LuAnn Smith", who I used to be before I got married!)

Also, shouting out for the Thirsty for Comments Thursdays hop (hosted by the Acting Balanced blog and DL Hammons' Blog Blitz group hosted at his Cruising Altitude blog.  Check them out too, you won't regret it.


If I had a two-way ticket for a stable wormhole, and could make a single out-and-back trip to anywhere at any point in history ... I'd probably go back and meet Einstein.  He could figure out the formula for stabilizing wormholes at will and I could make him a webpage to distribute the process to the masses at no charge.  We would also have to make some sort of "failsafe" code to ensure the technology was not misused by haters and/or trolls.  

Alternatively, I'd like to go back and see either the Sermon on the Mount or hang out with the shepherds on the night of Jesus' birth in Bethlehem.


Little Known Mostly Useless Factoid:  This marks my 46th post of the year.  In the rest of my blogstory I've made a total of 136 posts.  That means I am 1/3 of the way to making this the year that I have as many posts as I made in the last SIX YEARS!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sneakers Waiting For Daddy

I try to make it a truly "Wordless Wednesday" but this picture is so hard to see that it just requires a little explanation.

My husband came home to Kentucky from helping his Mom and her husband in Texas for two weeks.  I think it's the longest time we've been apart in 16 years.  I was at home with the kids and our furry menagerie.  The momma dog, Sneakers, is a Daddy's girl.  When we got back to the apartment 2 weeks ago, she went sniffing around the Suburban, looking for her Daddy.

Anytime I went to lay down in the bedroom, if I didn't let her back with me, she would scratch at the door to be let in.

And today, in a move I had never seen her do before, she stood on a chair in the kitchen, nosed aside the curtains and looked.  I swear part of her understood that her Daddy was coming home.

I tell you what - I was only away from my husband for two weeks.  But I developed a WHOLE NEW RESPECT for military spouses.   I really don't know how I would handle something like that.

Thank you for visiting.  Do you have a/some furry babies?  Feel free to brag on them in comments here.  And then click the little "Wordless Wednesday" button at the top of this post and go visit some other WW participants, or become one yourself at

Monday, March 4, 2013

Proverbs 31: 20 - 21

 Marriage Moment

Proverbs 31

20 - She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth out her hands to the needy.

21 - She is not afraid of the snow for her household:  for all her household are clothes with scarlet.


If every good thing we have is from God, then it falls to us to be His hands here when the less fortunate need assistance.  This does not mean that we put ourselves or our families in a difficult way by giving away all we have.  But it does mean that helping the less fortunate is an integral part of our salvation.  I've heard some people say that they don't want to give money to a homeless person because they'll probably use it for drugs or alcohol, that they don't deserve it.  If we all only got what we deserved ... well, we'd all be in deep, DEEP you-know-what.

A Proverbs 31 woman/wife is also prepared for the future, so doesn't worry that her family will be worse off due to some disaster.  Several years ago we had a really bad ice storm here.  Several counties were without power for weeks.  My husband's Mamaw has a wood stove to heat her home ... and we got to hang out with her for a couple of days, until ours came back.  Again, we are not required to provide for the future to the extent that we neglect our present.  But do we really need the newest electronics the minute they come out?  I'm not saying that is necessarily a bad thing, either, just make sure you are prepared for the snow.

Now, for two of my goals:

Caring for self - I want to walk 30 minutes per day at least 3 days per week.

My idea here to have one of my kids come with me each day.  I have 3 kids, so DS1 (dear son 1) could come with me on Monday and Thursday, DS2 on Tuesday and Friday, and DD (dear daughter) on Wednesday and Saturday.  I'm 'surprising' them with this on Monday.

Caring for my children - I am going to teach my oldest son, aged 16, to drive.

A good first step for us would be to go to the DMV and get the Kentucky driver's manual, and go to a nice big parking lot for practice!  

At least I won't be short on things to pray about this week, eh? *ROFL*

Have a GREAT week, y'all!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

So When You Come to Visit

Let's Get Social Sunday

Since my theme this month is "Friendship", I thought it would behoove me to write a post on some of the things I would suggest doing in the area when a friend comes to visit.

1.  Watersports

Somerset is quite close to several areas of Lake Cumberland, and there are a few business that will rent you anything from a 'personal watercraft' all the way up to a houseboat.  There are even the occasional boat races on Lake Cumberland.  In addition, marinas usually offer holdiay related events such as fireworks on July 4th and drive-through Christmas light displays at the end of the year.  For lots of links and information, you can visit the Lake Cumberland Tourism site maintained by the Somerset/Pulaski County Convention and Visitors' Bureau.

If you have kids, there is always the Somersplash Water Park, open from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and the odd weekend before or after those days.  Attractions include a wading pool for the wee ones amongst us, a lazy river perfect for relaxation, a wave pool and multiple body or tube slides (including a bowl slide and a speed slide) for those more adventurous than me!

If you are into fishing, there is plenty of opportunity for that too.  (I don't usually go, but my husband and his father are avid fishers.)

2.  Cumberland Falls

There are lots of hiking trails around the falls and several scenic lookout terraces.  Probably the most popular time to go is on a night where there is a moonbow over the falls.

3.  Historical Sites

There are several Civil War ear sites around here, but Mill Springs is arguably the most famous.  They have a visitors' center and do re-enactments every so often, as well as some kid-friendly ghost-type activities around Halloween.

Ft. Boonesboro (of Daniel Boone fame) is a little farther away, but makes a nice day trip.  You go into the fort, see a short multi-media presentation and then can walk around and see shops and cabins as they would have appeared in Boone's time.  I liked seeing the progression of cabins (first where it is just a room really, with a dirt floor) showing how living quarters improved from just after move-in until after they had been there for a while and made improvements.  My boys really liked the blacksmith.  It is my understanding that several people/guides etc live there much as they did back in the day ... including having to make their own fire.

4.  Festivals Etc.

Two things for which Somerset is probably most well-known is the Master Musicians' Festival and Somernites Cruise.

I did not know much about the MMF until my brother (who is in music at the University of Utah) mentioned it some years ago.  Being that he thinks it's a big deal, it must be!  Their site hasn't been updated for 2013 yet, but they do have a rather active Facebook page.  And one year, MMF had Nuttin' But Stringz there, which is like one of my favorites.  I'm going to try to embed a Youtube video:

Somernites Cruise is draws the biggest crowds to Somerset on the 4th weekend of each month, April through October.  On Friday night there is a block party downtown for the cruise.  On Saturday afternoon, people park their vintage vehicles along main street and people walk by and they all gab about cars for the entire afternoon.  Parking can be a bear at times, but that's to be expected.  There are food and craft, etc, vendors around as well.  Then, Saturday night, the cars cruise up and down Highway 27.

People are setting up lawnchairs, blankets, coolers, etc etc up and down Highway 27 and setting up in front of the various businesses to get the best vantage point for see the cars cruising by.  This usually starts early Saturday morning, but I've even seen folks out the night before!

Anyway, when folks come to visit, we can always find something to see or do, even if they want a true "vacation" and want to rest.  But how often does that  happen, really?

Saturday, March 2, 2013

25 Questions to Ask Your Grandparents

If you want to start (or are in the middle of) gathering family stories and family history, it helps to talk to older relatives.  In case you don't already have questions in mind, I compiled a short (and by no means comprehensive) list that you can modify to suit your needs.  It's good to already have a list of questions prepared before you speak with your grandparents, aunts & uncles, great-grandparents, etc.

1.  What is you earliest memory?

2.  How many siblings do you have?

3.  Can you tell me about your mother?

4.  Can you tell me about your father?

5.  What was your schooling like?

6.  What pet/s did you have growing up?

7.  What is your favorite color?

8.  What's the farthest away from home you've ever traveled?

9.  How did you meet grandpa/ma?

10.  Do you keep a journal?

11.  What was your favorite present you've received?

12.  What was your favorite present that you've given?

13.  How do you keep in touch with friends from your younger days?

14.  What's the bravest thing you ever did?

15.  What do you feel most proud of in your life?

16.  What do you feel least proud of in your life?

17.  What is your favorite food?

18.  What was going to church like when you were younger?

19.  What is the most important lesson you've learned?

20.  What's on your bucket list?

21.  What was dating like when you were younger?

22.  What is your favorite book?

23.  Can you tell me a funny story about my mother/father growing up?

24.  How did you use your talents?

25.  How can I help you?

I'd be thrilled if you would share a question you would like to ask one of your ancestors, so the list will keep growing!  Thanks and have a great weekend!

Friday, March 1, 2013

31 Affirmations About Friendship

  Lots of Love Link Up

1.  I am a good friend.

2.  I make friends easily.

3.  I have great friends.

4.  I have a lot to offer my friends.

5.  I am there for my friends.

6.  I nurture my friendships.

7.  I encourage my friends.

8.  I am friends with positive people.

9.  I am grateful for my friends and let them know it.

10.  My friends love me for who I am.

11.  I love my friends for who they are.

12.  I choose my friends wisely.

13.  I cherish my friends.

14.  I enjoy time spent with my friends.

15.  I support my friends.

16.  My friends and I care for each other.

17.  My friends and I support each other.

18.  I am a friend I would like to have.

19.  I share of myself with my friends.

20.  I actively listen to my friends.

21.  I help my friends when they need a friend.

22.  My circle of friends are loving and supportive of each other.

23.  I introduce my friends to each other.

24.  I help my friends enrich their friendships.

25.  I like myself and my life, and therefore can be a friend to others.

26.  My friends know me and love me.

27.  My friends rekindle my inner spirit.

28.  I walk with my friends in dark times and light.

29.  My friends are people of good character.

30.  I am fluent in the language of friendship.

31.  My friends live in my heart.

Which is your favorite affirmation?  Do you have any other affirmations about friendship that you find useful? Let us know in the comments!