Monday, November 24, 2014


Trust me, folks. We're fine. 

Here's what we awoke to yesterday:

Please notice--no snow. (Our snow in my header photo? We call that a heavy frost.) We're in a suburb north of Buffalo, well away from those huge snowfalls. We had high temps yesterday and I even happily raked leaves in the afternoon.

The river outside our window is two blocks away and has never flooded (not much, anyway) its wide banks, even with its annual end-of-winter ice flows.

We're due for high winds this afternoon, but if we lose power, we'll be okay. I stay prepared for this stuff, remember? We've lived in this town for over three years and have never lost power for more than one minute at a time.

So repeat after me: "Tom and Debra are fine. They do not live near the trouble spots."


But really, I do appreciate your concern for us! Right now, though, our South Town neighbors would appreciate your prayers. It's gonna be a hairy next 24 hours for many of them.



I wish you all could hear the 20-second videos our local tv station is sharing. People are giving thanks for their neighbors and others who've helped in extraordinary ways this past scary week.

I love this state where I live, always have, even from Moment One. Yeah, even with the snow.


Free Kindle book:


"Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness.” 
― Mary Oliver

“Is it snowing where you are? All the world that I see from my tower is draped in white and the flakes are coming down as big as pop-corns. It's late afternoon - the sun is just setting (a cold yellow colour) behind some colder violet hills, and I am up in my window seat using the last light to write to you.” 
― Jean WebsterDaddy-Long-Legs

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Your Talent. It's More Vital Than You Realize.

"Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young (or have a seemingly small talent), but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity."   ... 1 Timothy 4:12


If you've ever felt that God forgot to give you a helpful-to-others talent/gift/calling, read on...

You know how I've given you peeks of my grocery stockpiles like these here at Hobbit Cottage?

Well, unless you went news-less last week, you heard that our local Buffalo South Towns got socked with so much snow that they weren't allowed out on the roads for any reason for 5 or 6 days, lest they be ticketed. I even heard of 'walking bans' for the very first time. Imagine not being able to legally walk down your own street or to the corner market! (Not that many markets were even able to stay open.)

Well, at the Facebook page of my favorite local coupon blogger, she received lovely thank-you's like this one:

" I just want you to know that this isn't "mouth service". Without all the help from your page, I don't know if we would have had enough food in this house for 6 people for this long. I still have tons of soup, spaghettios, beefaroni, ramen get the idea. I've made 2 loaves of bread in my breadmaker today. I told hubby I have about 4 boxes of pancake mix...that might be his bread after today LOL. I just want and need to tell you how important your page has been to me! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!"

And that was only one of the notes.

Now, is our local coupon blogger famous? Would you recognize her name? Is she a big time preacher/teacher/politician/musician/singer/crusader who's reshaping the lives of millions of people? 

No, but she's still a hero. 

Daily she shows the rest of us how to afford to feed our families in today's expensive world. She helps us create a bounty of provision for 'such a time as this'--last week's record breaking snowstorm. Because of her coupon and sale match-ups, hundreds of Buffalo's South Towns families had food inside their homes. And more? This may have saved lives, even, for some deaths occurred when people ventured out in their cars into the dangerous, life-threatening conditions.

But only God knows those sorts of numbers. 

Perhaps you have saved lives without knowing it! No deed is small or goes unnoticed by the God who knows exactly what's going on. What remains is that we daily obey and trust that what we do matters. And may we remember that someday we'll see what happened behind the scenes--not through a clouded glass--but clearly. And it will all be important.


Volunteer Snow Shovelers Hit Buffalo Streets...


"'Forward, the Light Brigade!' 
Was there a man dismay'd? 
Not tho' the soldiers knew 
Some one had blunder'd: 
Theirs not to make reply, 
Theirs not to reason why, 
Theirs but to do and die..."   ... Tennyson

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Of Burt, His Bees and Conventional Books Never Written

"Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content."   ... 1 Timothy 6:6-8


Wow. Tom and I just finished watching the most interesting (dare I say fascinating?) documentary at Netflix; Burt's Buzz, a film about the quirky, eccentric co-founder of Burt's Bees products.

Except that Burt doesn't seem quirky and eccentric to me. Each word he spoke made perfect sense, especially since he's a classic introvert, albeit an outdoorsy one. I totally get him. Totally.

And truthfully? This was yet another film/life on a screen which illustrates why I don't want to write a book. At least, not the type attached with an agent/publicist who could legally whisk me away from this life I've chosen to write about. You know, so he/she could sell more copies.

Uh, no. I desire nothing that would change 'what God hath wrought' and what He's wrought is a happy homemaker who's in love with Him and the simple life He led her to find at one Hobbit Cottage.

May I never be dragged away from here unwillingly as Burt sometimes is from the simple life he prefers.


“Writing is something you do alone. Its a profession for introverts who want to tell you a story but don't want to make eye contact while doing it."

[Thoughts from Places: The Tour, Nerdfighteria Wiki, January 17, 2012]” 
― John Green

“It's not that introverts aren't good team players. We just don't need to be in the same room as the rest of the team at all times. We would much prefer to have part of the project carved out for us to squirrel away with it in our offices, consulting as necessary but working independently.” 
― Sophia DemblingThe Introvert's Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World


Weather Report: We've still had just 3 or 4 inches of snow here north of Buffalo. But now the problem for the South Towners is that our temps are rising, it's raining, and flooding is on everyone's minds. Your prayers would be appreciated by all, I'm sure!


Don't have time to watch the documentary about Burt? Here's an article about it.