Beginning Anew – preparing for leave taking

As you begin thinking about where you might be going it is important to clean and organize where you are now. This is the time to close this chapter of your life.  You have a lot of decisions to make.  It is also time to clean where you are living now and to decide what you want to bring with you.  Packing for a move is the perfect time to make room for the new that lies ahead. Begin with the area you sleep in now. That way you will have a clean organized place to rest! There are lots of resources available on line and books to help you with this organization.  This is a great time to create a pretty memory box. You will be going through items and finding treasures. If you have children, you could encourage them to choose a few special items for their memory box.  This is a wonderful way to teach them about taking care of treasures and how to let go of items that they have outgrown.  Make a special box of toys or clothes they have outgrown and take items to a charity shop together. It is in the doing that the lesson is taught.  The words need actions to take them to heart. 

At one time in our married life we had been moved out of state by the company my hubby worked for.  A health issue caused us to have to move back to Pennsylvania.  This situation forced hard choices to be made.  What helped me was to find a home for some things with the friends I had made in the area.  One neighbor was happy to receive a sled and a child’s table and chairs. Another took an old oak dresser and to my delight she removed the legs, added castors and put on a butcher block top.  This she used in her kitchen.  Seeing others happy made my transition much easier.

When doing my spring or fall cleaning, I would always keep a charity bag near where I was working.  This has always helped me to keep control on clutter.  I make my own gifts by baking or sewing.  I have grouped baking items in a specific spot and all my sewing supplies in another.  If someone shares fabric, I wash it immediately and add it to the bookcase I keep fabric in.  If someone shares something I cannot use it goes into the charity box.  If I know of someone who can use it I also share but do so without pressure. It is vital that when something enters the house it be useful and has a place.

Move through out where you are and keep only what you truly love, that you use regularly, is needed for daily life or is a treasured heirloom. Things are meant to be used, keeping something because you feel guilt is not something to move forward with.  Try to find someone who would love it or donate it to charity. It will bring value and joy to another’s life.

I hope you have been following my encouragement for planning for your new home. I will share my dream list with you:

1. Sunlight
2. Porch or somewhere to sit with flowers
3. A Home Church
4. An eat-in kitchen
5. A spot where I could sew and not have to take down my sewing machine

Vital – Affordability — A place where we would be comfortable and be able to live within our means.

I would say that the kitchen was the most important room to me. We love to have folks around our table. This home allowed us to create a country kitchen by using the original dining room. We did this by purchasing only lower cabinets and a free-standing pantry. I had a china cabinet for my dishes. With faith we moved. With the help of Patrick, family and friends we made a home.  God has truly blessed us and we have been here going on 30 years. Your list will be different.  This was my dream.  Know yourself and learn what is important for you to live and find the mission God has planned for you. I will be praying for you.

Blessings, Trudy

Beginning Anew

On my last post I shared the story of being part of married couple for over fifty years.  I have had fun looking at different blogs on the internet about home decor.  I noticed a lot of similarities as I viewed a lot of lovely homes.  Then I read about the interest in organizing your home and even information on minimalism.  We are, all of us, constantly encouraged to see beauty and to create an atmosphere of a safe, ordered haven for ourselves and those that we share our home with.

In the years of my employment I have had an opportunity to visit many young families beginning to make a home.  I decided to share with you my thoughts and ideas to assist you who may be creating a new life in a new place?  This may be a first apartment, or maybe starting over in a new role in your life.  Life is always moving forward.  Change is a part of life. There is a book called “Who moved my cheese?”  by Spencer Johnson that deals with the human resistance to change. Change to our minds can mean uncertainty. We know the situation we are in, the loss we have experienced, and we may be very reluctant to change. Scripture explains to us that “To everything there is a season.” Ecclesiastes 3-1.  Flowers bloom, they nurture our hearts feed other life, then die.  If you are facing a change it is my hope that in some way, I may help you discover more about yourself, encourage you as you move forward and remind you that “we walk forward in faith.”2nd Corinthians 3-7.

To create a place that you call home requires you to discover what you delight in. What brings you joy?  All you need to start is a piece of paper and pencil.  Please do not think about finances at this time. This is the time for dreaming.  What is your favorite color?  What is your favorite flower?  Where are you happiest; beach, woods, mountains, lake side or city-scape?  Take time and ponder times in your life you were really happy. Where were you?  I have lived in many different places but my guide to creating a home always was guided by remembered times of love.  It is very important to my well being that I have some chairs for folks to sit and a small table to serve refreshments. My husband needs a recliner and a lamp. We both need a bed.  This would be our list of basic needs for furniture.  Most manufactured homes and apartments come equipped with a kitchen and bathroom. Many also have blinds or curtains included also.  What about a refrigerator?

Please think about things you need.  OK, now think about your wants. You need shelter. You need to be able to pay to have a place to live, for electricity, food and water.  These are necessities.  A TV, air conditioner, dish washer, fan, are wants.  What is important is that you have what you need to live. You then budget the funds coming in with meeting these needs. Waiting for a want is definitely worth meeting needs.  I am speaking from my heart when I say this is the foundation of a home.  Having expenses is part of life. Living above your means is not compatible with a happy home. 

The true magic of a beautiful home comes from the harmony that greets you at the door. This atmosphere is created not by beautiful things, but by feelings.  I found a chair at a flea market. All I did to it was to purchase some gold skeleton leaf decals and use a staple gun to create a new seat cover.  Almost 20 years later I am still using this chair.  It has given friends a place to sit with me. It has allowed me to share time and company.  A little 10-dollar chair. 

The $10 Chair

Please make a list about things that bless your heart.  With this list I will work with you as we

Please make a list about things that bless your heart.  With this list I will work with you as we brain-storm ideas to create your own little house of blessings.

Believe in the One who believes in you.
Miss Trudy

Fifty-One Years

Thoughts on our wedding anniversary 4/20/1968 to 4/20/2019

The past: 1964
I was an 18-year-old senior in High School. A date for the prom was arranged by the family. Two brothers flipped a coin to see who lost and had to take this poor girl. I was the youngest of six children. My adult experiences were all ahead of me .I had my Christian faith, a strong love for my father and dreams. My Father did not believe in continuing education for me. I was taught great faith and to work hard. God blessed me because the young man who lost the coin toss was a Christian, an honorable young man and a very hard worker. We were chaperoned to the prom. We became friends. With patience and respect he won my heart.  
We had quite a life of adventures as a young married couple. Mr. Pat worked two jobs for the first fifteen years of our marriage.  We had a son.  We were faced with heath issues, financial issues and dealt with day to day stuff.  What I want to share is that life happens. Sometimes, it is really important to place the one you love ahead of yourself.  What backing-up allows is the other person gets to see if their dream fits. You don’t know unless you try it on. Sometimes, it seems like the sky is falling, and you just have to find a shelter with the Lord then look at what broke.  Roll up your sleeves and see what or who you can help.  I discovered that a can of tomato soup and a box of pasta can feed six folks and allow us time for friendship. I focused my energies on creating a place for just being together and meeting the physical and emotional needs as best as I could.  Life is not just meeting a challenge but going beyond the challenge to discover the good. I was able to share my interest in and love of nature, music and reading with our son.  Now from where you are looking at this a half century later you may be thinking that’s a lot of giving. True, but you see when you put someone else ahead, you give them your belief in them.  I am not a rug.  I am a living person with beliefs and feelings. What I discovered is that in serving, we grow. At the age of forty, my husband and son supported my dream to work with young children.  I worked in this field for 30 years.  We supported our deaf son in his dream of being a musician and he has touched so many lives.
The present: 2019
We continue our lives together.  We continue to give and to receive from each other; faith, gratitude and love.  Each of us give of ourselves.  We have what money cannot buy.  We have each other, our faith, our church, our mission to share with others and our love for each other and for those who God brings into our lives.
The future:
God is there

Blessings and Hugs,
Trudy Groff Costello

Renewing our vows 4/20/2018

Easter Table

Easter Dinner Table
Second Photo Easter Table

Hello, it has truly been a special week. We had a beautify church service on Holy Thursday. I had my quiet time on Good Friday. It rained heavily last night. This morning we had choir practice and everything we saw on the way to church was the beautiful first green of Spring. Joy!
When we got home, Mr. Pat helped me make potato salad, corn pone and boiled the eggs for deviled eggs. Tomorrow we will cook ham in the crock pot. I hope to make a pie tonight also. I set the table so I could share a photo with you. I want you to know that it is a come together table scape. The cloth and napkins are from the thrift shop. Mr. Pat cut an empty wax paper
cardboard roll into 1-inch pieces. I hot glued a strip of fabric I had to make napkin rings. The centerpiece is my loving tree from Valentine’s day. I added a nest and eggs. My plates were a trade. I traded four blue and white plates for the four white ones. I truly enjoy these as a base for my collection of dishes with roses. I took three of my little tea cups and filled them with treats and a little bird. I tied a little ribbon to the handle. The beautiful antique table runner is an heirloom gift from a church friend. At one end of the table is a lady bunny sewing a quilt. Her little baby rabbit is in his cradle near her. The lady bunny was a gift and the tiny baby bunny was from my childhood. There is a little wagon full of carrots, thrifted ducks and another bunny from my childhood. Another church friend hand painted a little rock with a rabbit and chicks. The only things I purchased were the little birds, nest, eggs and treats. All that you see is a happy little collection gathered over time at very little cost. I truly wish you a joyous Easter Sunday. Mr. Pat, Patrick and I wish you and those you hold
dear God’s blessings. Miss Trudy

New Life

There is a lot of discussion in state legislatures recently concerning
prenatal and new born babies. I believe all life is precious. It is
important to me to act on my beliefs. Scripture tells us “Before I formed
you in the womb I knew you.” Jeremiah 1:5 and “Children are a gift from
God.” Psalm 127:3.

Maryland has a program called Safe Haven. This program allows new moms the option to give their newborns to a participating hospital, police or responsible adult within 10 days of birth. The mom says this is a “Safe Haven Baby” and no questions will be asked. I have a Safe Haven sign on the front of our home. I would accept the new-born and then take it to the proper authorities explaining that this is a Safe Haven Baby. It is my hope that this program may prevent a newborn from abandonment. You can find out if there is a program like this where live. Maryland’s program is under the department of health and human resources.

I have created a prayer for new life. I have printed out copies of this prayer and shared it and the Safe Haven information with my church family.
I hope you will join me in praying for new life. Thank you and God Bless,
Miss Trudy

Dearest God,
Maker, Creator, Father of Life.
Please hear my plea.
Protect the precious newborns and babies-to-be.
Let life unfold as it is meant to be.
In Jesus name, I pray to Thee.