85 N. Main St., Norwood, NY 13668
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Blog“Just Over the Hilltop”

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Hello and welcome to just over the hilltop in Norwood where the sun has been shining all morning and still going. What a glorious sight it is and how the rain-soaked leaves and flowers are reaching upward once again as they dry out and open their lovely, colorful blossoms. The yellow and purple Irises are beautiful and the tiny ants are busy working their magic on the peony buds.

The blackcaps are beginning to show their white knobs while a wren is trying to find a perfect spot for a home along the side porch. There is definitely much activity and many changes going on on the hill today. I am watching in wonder and awe at the happenings going on on the hill just because of the sun. “It’s such a pretty world today – look at the sun shine.”

It’s such a pretty world today – look at the sun shine!

There was a day last week that I was able to fit in a little weeding and in doing so found myself thinking about the parable of the wheat and the chaff. It certainly is easier to see the weeds (chaff) when you let them grow up with the flowers, thus making them much easier in locating and pulling them. With the damp ground after the days and days of rain, the weeds pulled out very quickly and easily. I suppose one could say I was lazy concerning the weeding, but I prefer to think it discernment to wait and not have to bend over so far or struggle so hard. Either way, many of the weeds have been pulled temporarily in two of the gardens and now I need to get to the one on top of the hill.

Activities abound

Writers’ group met last week, I served fifteen men breakfast on Saturday, visited at Eric’s and family Sunday evening, and went to get new glasses and have my eyes checked yesterday. It has been about seven or so years and I noticed recently that I needed to be closer to the oncoming road signs before actually being able to read them. My eyes had changed slightly but my glasses have been repaired one too many times. So, I’m getting new ones with the updated lens!

Dick is starting to prepare for his part with a husky puppet for Vacation Bible School coming in July. If you remember, he loves acting and using puppets so he is “right up his alley” and the enjoying the prospect of entertaining and teaching children with this new friend. He has named him, “Ditty” in honor of the Iditarod.

Stones and Debt

When in Vermont and at Stickney Brook, there was a young mother with three little children, maybe six, four, and eighteen to twenty months. They were wading along the edge of the flat area and the little girl (about four) kept smiling at me and following as I walked along the brook. I yelled “hi” over the sound of the rushing falls and asked if she’d ever found a heart-shaped stone. She looked at me questioning but never spoke a word which was okay because I was a stranger though her mother was right there. She continued to smile and follow me. Quietly I prayed to find a heart-shaped rock to show and give to her. Lo and behold, there was one off to the edge of the road. And this was a perfect one. It had been buffed smooth and had a perfect shape. Even its edges were round and soft to the touch.

every time I see a heart-shaped stone it reminds me that Jesus loves me

I gave it to her saying, “See, this is a heart-shaped stone” and before I could finish my sentence she smiled brightly and ran to show her brother and then her mother. She kept turning to smile at me as she held this precious stone in her little hand. They left and began to travel downstream following the brook and came upon Dick who was returning up stream.  She, delighted, showed him the little stone. He oohed and awed over it and was grinning the rest of the way because if you remember he collects heart stones as a reminder of his new heart and his love for me. Anyway, the rest of my sentence was going to be, “every time I see a heart-shaped stone it reminds me that Jesus loves me.” She won’t think of that but maybe she’ll start a collection of heart stones and one day think of me and where it all began. Stickney Brook in West Dummerston and maybe one day she’ll learn that Jesus loves her, too.

One more thing. One of the reasons we had lived in a camper for so many years was to begin the process of getting out of debt. Buying the schoolhouse and opening the diner had put us farther in debt than we ever wanted to be, other than a home mortgage. We prefer to save and pay cash for our second-hands cars or second-hand clothes. Anyway, Dick was gracious enough to help but it took longer than we expected or wanted as we desired to keep currant and not go deeper than we were. If we had never started the process and plan to get out of debt, as overwhelming as it seemed at the time, we would probably still be there. But we aren’t! And that is my one more thing. I want to say thanks to Dick, to my Dad’s plan, and to God’s blessings, for I have now paid off the last remaining debt concerning the diner. Romans 13:8a tells us to “owe no man anything, but to love one another” and now I’m free to do just that. Lovingly, Sharon