Musings from the Threshold

Category Archives: Misc.

Enroute to Kansas Bible Camp

On Friday, September 4th, Jonathan & I, the Blessings, and Papa and Mama Byrd (who had driven in from Florida the day before) headed out for Kansas.  There was a Work Retreat at KBC, and we were all looking forward to it.  Jonathan and I were especially looking forward to being home in Kansas.  It had been over two years since we had been back for Stephen’s birth.  The Lord blessed us with a beautiful day as we drove toward Hutchinson.  Here’s a sampling of the beauty He displayed for us in Kansas

August/September Birthdays

Jonathan’s requested birthday dinner was potato soup, salad, and chicken pot pie. His Coffee Cake-Literally birthday cake was a critically acclaimed surprise. He received a penny whistle and a harmonica (with Mel Bay manual) from his parents and fancy pipe tobacco and some mad money from mine. Alas, I have not yet managed to get him a birthday present… though I did take him to see the Steve Miller Band with my birthday mad money. Surely that counts?

Here’s some pics from J’s bday:

Josiah and Elanor had an interesting party arrangement this year. Ellie’s birthday was the day before we left for our Kansas trip; Josiah’s was the day we drove back. Ellie had her chosen birthday dinner on her birthday, but wanted to save cake for their official joint Bday party. Josiah had his Bday cake the night we got back from Kansas (Gpa and Gma Smith even came over at 9pm to be there for the cake!), and he chose the dinner for their joint party. The presents also happened at the joint party. Crazy planning, but it was a lot of fun.

Hope Chest Traditions

A little over a month ago, I began doing some freelance work for an online studio. For my first assignment, I accidentally did the wrong title. Ha! (I realized it was the wrong title before I turned it in, don’t worry.) It was good practice, and it was about something in which I’m interested, so I don’t consider it a waste of time. But I thought I’d go ahead and post it here, so it doesn’t just sit in my file. Hope you enjoy it!

Hope Chest Traditions

Spanning centuries and continents, the hope chest has traditionally been a place to store the treasures of young women awaiting marriage. Popularity has waxed and waned, but an online search will quickly reveal that hope chests are still desired and used today.

Hope chests were used to collect and preserve a woman’s trousseau as far back as the late medieval times. In some cultures, hope chests contained the only possessions a woman actually owned.

Traditionally given to young women by their parents, hope chests were filled with the goods needed to set up a household, often items handcrafted by the young ladies themselves as they matured.

In different countries around the world, hope chests have had various names and forms; the Italian cassoni, the Dutch kast, the German schrank, and the English glory box are examples.

Cedar is commonly used for creating hope chests, due to its resistance to bacteria, fungi, and decay, as well as its insect repellant properties.

Fun Fact
Sulfur inlay is a decorative technique, used the late 18th and early 19th centuries by Pennsylvanian chest crafters, that involves filling carved channels in the wood with molten sulfur.

photo by RichinMN, CC BY-NDW 2.0

Cedarwood Furniture – Cedar Facts

Wright Kids Stuff

Cedarwood Furniture

A New Addition

We’ve been considering the possibility of getting a dog for the last several weeks, after losing 5 chickens in about a week’s time. On Tuesday, thanks to some amazingly generous friends, we brought home a new addition to our family.

Juilin is a full-bred Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie). He’s almost five months old, and has a very sweet disposition. Most of us have totally fallen for him, and Jonathan thinks he’s pretty okay for a dog. His name is pronounced jew-linn; he’s named after a “thief-catcher” in a series of books J and I enjoy. We’re hoping he stops our chicken thief, though we doubt he’ll “catch” him!

I was planning to tell you more about Juilin, but right now I think I need to go out and let him run around some. More later!


Stephen has had a tiny dimple near his left eye for quite a while. It’s cute, but doesn’t show up that often.

Here’s Stephen on July 5:

Very cute. But no dimple.

Then on July 9, he got in a fight with a cabinet… and lost.
See the deep bruise showing up on his cheek?

And here he is on July 29, with his new dimple in full bloom:

Fascinating, eh?
I don’t know how long this dimple will last, but I think it is adorable!

Memory Dishes

Laurie commented recently about how dishes hold food memories, and asked if any dishes in my life hold memories of certain foods. I’ve been pondering this, and want to pass on the question, as well as answer it for myself.

Mama had/has (Mama? do you still have it?) a lovely flowered china tureen that is always associated in my memory with spaghetti. I’m sure she used it for other things, but spaghetti sauce is what I picture in it. I also hear our friend Brian moaning, “Oh, E, my belly!” because he’d eaten too much of Mama’s wonderful spaghetti.

A pan might not be the kind of dish Laurie was thinking of, but I have LOTS of memories of Mama’s “chicken fryer.” Beef A’La Mom, tuna and rice, the aforementioned spaghetti sauce… I could go on and on.

Then there are camp pans, which conjure up memories of baked chicken, wheat rolls, zucchini cake… and scrubbing!

What about you? Do any dishes in your life hold memories of certain foods?

A Giveaway!

Giveaway at Apron Girls sponsored by great cookware and beautiful desks!

I love these baking dishes, and to stack the deck in my favor (since I’ve never ever won a blog giveaway), I’m passing it along to you. How’s that for irony… I selfishly want the dishes, so I’m letting you know about the giveaway… ha!

Good luck!