The Porch Light copyright by Revka (2006-2010). All rights reserved.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Layne's Funeral Details

It's hard to believe this picture of Layne, Sharon, Jason, and Krista is about 5 years old. It sure does being back memories!

Sharon has posted the funeral details at her blog, including information about Layne's memorial fund. I've been asked to play the piano at the funeral, and I count it an honor to do so. Please pray that God would use me and the service as He sees fit.

There is a song that Layne sang at church several times that is fitting for his family now. I leave you with its words.

God on the Mountain

1. Life is easy when you're up on the mountain,
And you've got peace of mind like you've never known;
But then things change and you're down in the valley;
Don't lose faith, child, you are never alone.

For the God on the mountain is still God in the valley,
When things go wrong, He'll make them right;
And the God of the good times is still God in the bad times,
The God of the day is still God of the night.

2. We talk of faith when we're up on the mountain,
But the talk comes easy when life's at its best;
It's down in the valley of trials and temptations,
That's when faith is really put to the test.

For the God on the mountain is still God in the valley,
When things go wrong, He'll make them right;
And the God of the good times is still God in the bad times,
The God of the day is still God of the night.


Monday, September 22, 2008

Until We Meet Again

I just received word that Layne Daniel went Home to be with his Savior about 8:30 p.m. - nearly 45 minutes ago. I know Sharon, Jason, and Krista are experiencing new depths of grief and loss, and my heart aches for and weeps with them.

Layne was our pastor for 6 years. He had played a big role in Mr. Incredible's life from the time he was a teenager, and he and his family have been wonderful friends to us and our family. We will miss him here on earth, but we are thankful that we know that we will see him again one day - in all probability sooner than we would think.

Funeral details have not yet been set, but we expect his wake to be held within a couple of days. I'll let you know. In the meantime, here's the link to his blog one more time in case you would like to leave your condolences there.


You Are in the Presence of Genius!

Your result for The Commonly Confused Words Test...

English Genius

You scored 100% Beginner, 100% Intermediate, 93% Advanced, and 100% Expert!

You did so extremely well, even I can't find a word to describe your excellence! You have the uncommon intelligence necessary to understand things that most people don't. You have an extensive vocabulary, and you're not afraid to use it properly! Way to go!

Thank you so much for taking my test. I hope you enjoyed it!

For the complete Answer Key, visit my blog:

Take The Commonly Confused Words Test at HelloQuizzy

Aren't I just swell? *laugh*


Layne Daniel Is Nearly Home

I just stopped by Layne's blog to see if there were any updates. There have been two posted since I last wrote. Excerpt from the latest post:

Layne took a turn for the worse today. His fever began to go up along with his pulse rate. Both signs that it is almost time for the Lord to take him home. ... This night watch will be difficult but what joy awaits for Layne.
You can read the full update for yourself; however, it is the previous post that I highly recommend your reading.
...We celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in July. I have had 20 wonderful years with Layne. His love shines out on every page. We have been so incredibly happy. 20 years just doesn’t seem long enough. I long for 20 more. ... Letting Layne go is the hardest thing the Lord has ever asked me to do. It’s so easy to think you have given God everything until He asks for the dearest thing of all. ... The coming loss is so great the grief is crushing. Only God’s grace lifts it from our hearts. In the face of such great grief though, there is still joy. ... Our road has been hard, the suffering has been long, our sorrow has been great; but, in the midst of it all we have had a loving, ever present, compassionate Heavenly Father. We know Him so much better now than we did a year and a half ago. We trust HIm more than we ever have because through it all He has never failed us. We love Him more because He has daily drawn us closer and closer to His heart. I have nothing but praise and thanksgiving to Him tonight. ...
Read the full post "Certain Victory"; you will be amazed and encouraged what God's grace can do for those going through such a trial.


Friday, September 19, 2008

Layne Daniel Significantly Worse

Sharon, Layne's wife, posted a new update at his blog this morning.

Layne’s condition changed significantly yesterday. ... I called the Hospice nurse and she came to check on him. The conclusion was that there has been another significant change in the tumor growth and swelling in the brain. ... The doctors and nurses believe Layne is quickly coming to the end of his long battle with this disease.
Read the full post

Time appears to be very short for Layne. Your continued prayers for him and his family are appreciated.


Get Cosy, Josey! Blog Tour

Thanks to LitFuse Publicity for providing a free review copy of this book. No other compensation was received for this review. The opinions contained herein are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.

I love being a book reviewer because it means I get free books to read. And Get Cosy, Josey! is a fabulous book - fun, realistic, inspiring, and addictive!

I cannot tell you how in the world author Susan Warren managed to weave in themes about wifely submission, witnessing, and everyday married life without making this book "preachy" or dull, but she did! Perhaps one reason she was able to accomplish those tasks is because she wrote from her personal experiences as a missionary in Siberia.

The story begins with the heroine of the story, Josey, agreeing to her adventurous husband's plea to move to Siberia to minister to the people there. Josey is a very real person - we are privy to her innermost thoughts, good and bad, and therefore can relate to and empathize with her struggles with finding her place, being kind and gracious, submitting to her husband, and adapting to a very harsh living environment. But Josey is in no way a depressing, sanctimonious, or wet-blanket character. She meets challenges with good humor and a steady determination to give her best as a Christian, wife, mother, and missionary.

Even though Josey did not want to move to Siberia, she did so out of submission to her husband. Throughout the book, she struggles to figure out what misconceptions regarding submission have shaped her attitudes and what true submission is.

In and out of scrapes, Josey will have you alternately laughing and crying as you tag along for her journey to Siberia. Whatever you do, don't miss out on this book!

Here's the official blurb and info:

Visit Susan’s blog tour post to read what other bloggers thought of this book.

Get Cozy, Josey by Susan May Warren: How do you get cozy when your new "home" is a frozen tundra? Josey's dreams of small-town Minnesota bliss melt away when her hubby's relocated to a Siberian village. No indoor plumbing...or junk food! But this feisty former missionary knows how to multitask: juggling toddler twins, empowering local housewives, spreading God's word - no worries, Josey. It's finding time alone with the man of her dreams that will take some real work!

About Susan: Susan May Warren is the award-winning author of seventeen novels and novellas with Tyndale, Steeple Hill and Barbour Publishing. Her first book, Happily Ever After won the American Fiction Christian Writers Book of the Year in 2003, and was a 2003 Christy Award finalist. In Sheep’s Clothing, a thriller set in Russia, was a 2006 Christy Award finalist and won the 2006 Inspirational Reader’s Choice award. A former missionary to Russia, Susan May Warren now writes Suspense/Romance and Chick Lit full time from her home in northern Minnesota.


Buy book here:

Read first chapter:

Susan’s website:

Susan’s blog:


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Saluting Our Heroes

May we never forget what happened on this date in 2001. May we always be thankful for remember (I am so sorry I accidentally wrote what I later scratched out! I put it in the wrong place.) those who died during the unprovoked attacks and always be thankful for the men and women who volunteered their time and strength to search for victims and to cleanup debris.

My friend Dana's husband, Joe, is one such volunteer, and she wrote a moving tribute to Joe and his service after 9/11. (Note: While this particular post is family friendly, I must attach a language advisory to the rest of her blog.)


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Layne Daniel Update at His Blog

I checked this morning, and there is a new update from Sharon, his wife. Please take the time to read it and, if you feel so inclined, to leave a nice comment.


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Thoughful Tuesday

I haven't posted a Thoughtful Tuesday in over a year, but I really like this series. Besides, I came across something today that just cried out for a Thoughtful Tuesday post.

"We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of the Sahara. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton."
- Robert Dawkins in Unweaving the Rainbow

The man is talking about the endless DNA variations possible, but his words instantly made me think of aborted lives.


Monday, September 08, 2008

We're Fine/Please Pray for Layne Daniel and His Family

Thank you to all who prayed and expressed concern for us as Hanna went by. Praise the Lord she gave us a pretty uneventful time, although we did lose power from 11:15 12:30p.m due to a tree falling across some lines. It's rather nice to be able to just pick up the phone and tell Mr. Incredible we don't have power rather than having to call the power company's hot line. :)

Mr. Incredible worked for fifteen hours on Saturday and then worked 10 hours on Sunday. He's rather tired, but I can't wait to see his check! *laughing*

I haven't mentioned our former pastor, Layne Daniel, in quite a while. Unfortunately, he had some major complications since the last time I posted an update: blood clots in his leg and lungs, a stroke, an infection at the site where he had a port inserted for his chemo, and several seizures. Due to those complications, he was not able to receive his antibody treatments for some time.

During that time, the cancer reappeared in his brain and started to grow larger. Layne has grown weaker, and if my information is correct, the decision was made about two weeks ago to bring him home to be with his family for his remaining days.

Those days appear to be very short now, and we keep dreading the call that will tell us that he has gone Home to be with his Savior. We dread the call not for him, but for us and for his wife and two children. We do understand that he is really suffering, and it would be a mercy for him to go home, but we selfishly would like to hang onto him.

Pray for him and his family as they walk this valley. I'll let you know when I hear any news.

It might be an encouragement to him and his family if you were to leave a comment at his blog. It hasn't been updated since August 15 when he ended up in the hospital for the last time, but I believe they still check it.

Thanks, my friends!


Saturday, September 06, 2008

Hanna Update

Mr. Incredible did go to work early this morning and is not yet back. I really don't expect him back any time soon.

The good news is that our house hasn't even lost power, and the worst part of the storm is passed. In fact, my relatives who live an hour and a half northwest of us ended up getting more of the storm than we did. My in-laws just told me they have gotten over 5 inches of rain. Even that is good, because our state has been behind on rainfall the whole year, and this storm will certainly help with that problem.

All in all, we are happy to have gotten off easy. Mr. Incredible might have some tales to tell when he comes home, but I rest in blissful ignorance at this point in time.

Thanks for you concern and your prayers. :)


Friday, September 05, 2008

Coming Closer

I'm sitting here working (yes, I know it's after midnight [my settings must be off because it's nearly 1:00 a.m. as I type this, but the post shows almost midnight]), and the wind is definitely picking up. We had three rain bands come through today, but I haven't heard much rain lately. That may just be because I've been engrossed in my work, though.

Because Hanna slowed down a bit today, she is expected to come through our area in a few hours, probably between 6 a.m. and noon. Mr. Incredible has to be at work at 6 this morning - right when the weather is supposed to be at its worst.

Thanks to those who have said they will be praying for us. We appreciate it.

Oh, and home school has gone well the past three days. We picked up some really neat free math manipulative sets today. They were offered through our local FreeCycle board and had to be picked up today. It was pouring buckets when the kids and I got to the place. But the supplies were totally worth it. :)

I'm off to bed. Have a good night!


Giveaway and Sale at RS Designs

We have put all of our pre-made blog designs on sale for 25% off during the month of September.

Also, we are giving away the winner's choice of a personalized Zudi and Vi baby blanket from GiggleBug Boutique. Entering the contest is as easy as leaving a comment at the giveaway post. The blankets are both lovely and unique, and even if you don't have a need for a baby blanket yourself, they would make a great gift. Entries are being accepted until 11:59 p.m. on September 15, 2008, so hurry over to put your name in the hat.


Hanna Homing In

The tracks from the last 24 hours continue to show that she will most likely come through our state slightly to the west of us. If she moves to the right, she could come directly over us. Even if she doesn't come directly over us, we will most likely be hit pretty hard. Because of the way these storms rotate, the east side of the storm is typically the side that gets the brunt of the storm.

Mr. Incredible is a lineman for the local power company and does not expect to come home today until late tonight, if at all. He already knows he will be working all day tomorrow, and depending on how severe the damage is, he may be working on Sunday, too. Pray for him and his co-workers to be kept in safety and to be able to restore power quickly.

We didn't have any tropical storms or hurricanes affect us last year. With Ike and Josephine coming behind Hanna, this year is shaping up to be quite different.

Please pray that damage will be minimal for us and for everyone else in Hanna's path. I'll let you know as soon as I can how we fared.


Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Back to School

all images courtesy of Fotosearch Stock Photography

Yesterday didn't go at all the way I had planned, but it turned out to be okay anyway.

I had a new piano student scheduled to come sometime in the afternoon. Since she lives an hour away from me, we had agreed that she would stop in for a lesson on her way back from a nearby town. I spent much of the morning finishing the cleaning I had started the day before but hadn't finished. The house was in better shape than it had been in a while. Great!

We took a break for lunch. I intended to have school after lunch, and the girls were very excited about it. Then I got a phone call from my student saying that she was finished in town and was on her way to my house. The town is 30-45 minutes from my house, depending on where you are in the town. Okay, school will wait.

Only... an hour and a half later, I am still waiting for my student to arrive. It turns out she got some bad directions from two people in the town. It was 3:00 when she finally found my house, and it was 4:15 when she left.

I had the foresight to put supper's entree in the crockpot in the morning. Shortly after the piano lesson, I decided to go ahead and put the butter beans on to cook. (Around here, lima beans are called butter beans.) From a frozen state, they take a good 45 minutes to cook completely, and I wanted to have supper ready around 5:30 for a change.

I received a call and was talking to my friend. All of a sudden, I smelled burned butter beans - not a pleasant aroma. Oh, no! Turns out the water had boiled down quite a bit and the butter beans on the bottom had burned pretty badly. I threw out the beans and put some more on to boil.

By this time, I knew Mr. Incredible would be getting home at any time, so the girls and I proceeded to pick up their messes in the living room. (He doesn't like coming home to a messy living room.) At least the house looked nice again!

Mr. Incredible arrived home, and supper was ready when he got out of the shower. We ate, and then it was finally time for school - at 8 p.m.! *rueful grin* School was rather backward from start to finish. The girls helped me hang some old posters and visual aids and the new ones we had purchased for this year. As we hung the items, we went over them together, providing a good review. We ended the session by saying our pledges, singing the national anthem, and having family prayers.

Whew! What a way to start the school year! :) At least the girls did enjoy it, and, surprisingly, I actually didn't get too stressed out yesterday, even though nothing went as planned.

Today, I have to go to town to stock up in preparation for Hurricane Hannah which appears to be headed our way on Friday or Saturday. Yippee skippee.

How have you been doing?


Monday, September 01, 2008

Frumpy No More! (It's All About Me)

I hope you have all had a good labor day. Mine has lived up to its name. *laugh*

Though that sounded funny, it wasn't a joke. I've had a productive day around the house today - finally got Buddy Bear's room cleaned and all his gifts put away (now I can show you photos of his cute room!), folded and put away multiple boxes of girl clothing, and got all the dishes washed (no small feat, let me assure you).

I really didn't have a choice. We begin school again tomorrow (still have to clean the school room tomorrow morning), and I have a new piano student starting tomorrow. And here I thought my life was busy already...

About the title. I am so happy to be able to say that! Since Mr. Incredible likes long hair, I let my hair grow. I also took the advice of some of my girl friends to let my bangs grow out. What a mistake! I started having to braid my hair at night just to keep it from being a horrifically tangled mess in the morning, and without bangs, my face looked fatter, and my forehead and nose were even more prominent, as you shall see.

Mr. Incredible kindly suggested that I cut my hair on our anniversary trip. I was relieved he suggested it, because I would never have felt like I deserved to spend the money on myself. But I hated how I looked.

The stylist was nice and did a good job cutting my hair. Here are before and after pics. I look less happy after the cut because I still wasn't quite happy with the way I looked.

I wasn't entirely happy with my new look because I still didn't have the bangs to cover my forehead like I wanted. So a couple of days ago, I cut them myself. Here's the end result.

Much better, no? I finally feel confident and happy with my appearance once again. I took the pictures myself, too. They are actually reflections of me in our bathroom vanity mirror. *laugh*