Wednesday, 30 July 2014

The Other Name Meanings Story - A Dose of Encouragement


2 weeks ago I wrote about the meaning of my name
and Fred's name - Our Name Meanings.

Today I want to tell you about the names we gave our 3 children.





In September 1982 Fred and I had a baby boy.

We did not know we were going to have a boy from a scan but we knew we would have a boy because of the name God had given us for our baby.

Some months before this on a Thursday night we had gone along as usual to the mid-week meeting in our church.  That night our Pastor was speaking on the relationship between David and Jonathan and approaching it from the true friend Jonathan was to David.

At the end of the meeting Fred and I just looked at each other and both said


that is the name for our baby


There was no doubt in our minds that we were to have a boy and we knew the name he was to have.


When September came

we had a boy and we called him 






Because we had felt so sure that this was the right name we had not thought to check the meaning of his name straight away but when we did we discovered that the name Jonathan is a Hebrew name and means




Well this was very true of this our first child because we had tried for some years but I had not become pregnant and we had really prayed for a child.


Two years later again in the month of September we were sitting in the hospital waiting for our second child to be born.  All through this pregnancy we had not thought of a name.

We did however believe it was going to be another boy (again not from a scan but we both felt God was giving us a boy) so as we sat there we prayed and asked God to help us find the right name.  We then went through the book of baby names for boys simply reading out each name in alphabetical order and with the idea of saying

yes,  no  or  maybe.


All through the A's we both just said no to each name and then the same for the B's and the C's we kept saying we should at least have a maybe, but it didn't happen.

Then in the D's we got to




and we both just said yes, and we were surprised that we did but we stopped there as we felt that was the name.

Later that day we had our second son and knew we had picked the right name which means







Three years later our third child was born at the end of December.

Now this time we had no idea whatsoever whether we were going to have a boy or a girl and we picked two names in advance.
   

Timothy and Linda.




This time I just kept saying that if we did have a girl I couldn't imagine her being called anything other than Linda and Timothy was a lovely character from the bible, plus doesn't Jonathan, Daniel and Timothy just sound so good.


Because we already had the two boys everyone kept saying things like


"I'm sure you are hoping for a girl this time"


or


"Oh you're going for the girl then?"


neither of which were true, we did not mind which God was giving us although I felt we were headed for another boy because I had not had any morning sickness throughout the first two pregnancies and this one was just the same.


However

God gave us





and all through her life she has been as happy with her name as I was with mine


maybe especially because


her name means






And don't you think that Jonathan, Daniel and Linda sounds really good?





Our children are now 31, 29 and 26 years old and we truly feel their names suited them perfectly.

We are so thankful that we can even trust God to give us the correct names for our children.

But then we do know that He cares about everything single thing about them.








The Names for this post were created with
Cool Text: Logo and Graphics Generator




Monday, 28 July 2014

Murder on the Links - Book Reivew

Disclaimer:
There is an affiliate link on this blogpost.




I am trying to read through the novels of Agatha Christie in the order in which they were written and write a review on each one.

  





Murder on the Links. 
1923.  
A Poirot Mystery.



Shelfari Description


"For God's sake, come!" 
But by the time Hercule Poirot can respond to Monsieur Renauld's plea, the millionaire is already dead -- stabbed in the back, and lying in a freshly dug grave on the golf course adjoining his estate. There is no lack of suspects: his wife, whose dagger did the deed; his embittered son; Renauld's mistress -- and each feels deserving of the man's fortune. The police think they've found the culprit. Poirot has his doubts. And the discovery of a second ,identically murdered corpse complicates matters considerably.







MY THOUGHTS

I had read this novel twice before and seen the TV versions but yet this time rereading it I still did not remember properly how the murder was committed.
I had fully forgotten who the murderer was although other facts were very clear before I read them again.

Is this an indication of a good author that you can reread the book still having to work at solving the mystery?

The thing I liked least about this story was the names given to the characters as for some reason I had difficulty remembering who was who.  Perhaps this was because there were French names involved.

The plot is not deeply rooted around golf, regardless of the title, so you do not have to be a golf enthusiast to take on the challenge of trying to solve this crime and there are some good clues to get your teeth into.

I would not rate this as one of my favourites by Miss Christie especially as I am not keen on someone co-incidentally ending up living in the same small village as someone else they had known before - not quite sure if this is a spoiler or not.

The thing I liked best was the fact that the story is told by Hastings (he is such a pet) and the fact of the time setting and pace of action being so different from today.








Here is a link to a list of her novels on Shelfari
Books by Agatha Christie



Disclaimer:
If buying through Amazon via the link above I get a little commission but that does not mean any extra expense to you.








Sunday, 27 July 2014

It's God's Love #4


It is week 4 already in this new Sunday Series.


There will be a simple, short post each week
consisting of a Bible Verse around the topic of
God's Love and I would be very pleased if you
would join me each Sunday.










Last month I spoke at a Ladies Meeting 



I had been asked to do so almost a year in advance but even then I felt that I should speak about


God's Mercy


which of course is so intertwined with His Love








God's Love.

Great Love.

Rich in Mercy.

That Love is for US.

We will never lack Mercy from God.









Friday, 25 July 2014

I'm Scanning Old Photos, is that FUN? - Housework/Funwork 28

Well this was supposed to be the time for the Shed overhaul & inventory.


However on closer inspection of the roof of the shed we knew that there was no point in starting on this because the roof was in such bad condition we really needed to get a new shed instead.

Fred went out with the tape measure on the day that our niece and her husband were visiting with their 2 year old son Adam (named after my father) and little Adam helped Fred to take the measurements of the shed (even though he can only count to 5 and despite my brave efforts involving fingers and toes he would not add the number 6 to that list).

You see any new shed would have to be the same size as the present one because the decking area around it had been just that built around the shed.  So now we are trying to find a non-wood shed that is 10 foot by 12 foot, with the door on the shorter side and is not green.
And guess what?    That is not the easiest of jobs here.


So what would I do this week for the housework?

Would I take a week off housework?       YES!  YES!  YES!

But would I waste time this week?       NO!  NO!  NO!

I decided to use the time to get on with another of the


The scanning of the negatives and photos into the computer.

Yeah this was definitely looking like FUNWORK this week.


In January I had moved all the photos and negatives from the storage under our bed to the Games Room on top of the snooker table.

They are all set out in piles of rough dates and I had been starting to scan the negatives and the photos to store these on an external hard drive because there are just so many of them to put on my laptop.

So the task involves three different jobs really.

1.  Scanning negatives with a Film and Slide scanner


2.  Scanning photos on my Canon Printer


3.  Filing all the Scans in appropriate files in the external hard drive (from the SD card I would scan them to)



Starting to do the negative scanning from upstairs in the Games Room would not be a good idea because I would have to stand and bend over at the snooker table and also wanting to organize them in months & years meant I actually wanted to scan everything by month and so would then have to go downstairs to use the printer/scanner when I had photos without negatives.

So I decided to bring the photos & negatives downstairs to the kitchen table a year or a month at a time and do the negative scanning there and then it would be a short distance to my study to use the printer/scanner.
Now I hear you asking why not just do it all in the study?
Answer is simply that I don't have enough free table/desk space in the study at the moment and you will understand that better when it comes to the overhaul of it which is going to take the whole month of September.

Now on to the Main Job

What did I need?
1.  Photos
2.  Negatives
3.  Soft clean cloth   -   to gently wipe dust etc. from the negatives and photos before scanning
4.  Film & Slide Scanner
5.  Printer/scanner
6.  Notepad & Pen   -   for any ideas or notes to be jotted down when I thought about something
7.  Good Storage for the actual photos and negatives   -   because some of the boxes I had previously had them in were not in great condition

So I got the slide & negative scanner and accessories ready


There was
  the actual scanner,
  3 holders (left to right -one for slides, one for a continuous negative roll and one for strips of negatives)
  a USB lead which goes from the scanner to the computer or mains adaptor
  the mains adaptor (mine is a European one because we bought this while we were living in Belgium)
  and a video lead which can link the scanner up to a TV or external screen

For me to get started I needed the scanner, Usb lead, mains adaptor, the negative strip holder and some negatives.



Firstly then I had to wipe the dust off a strip of negatives and insert the strip into the negative holder


making sure that the strip was in the right direction.

Then insert the SD card to save the images on to (you can also just connect to the computer and save them directly to it), slot the holder into the side of the scanner,



and turn on the power.
The scanner has a small but adequate preview screen so you can move the holder through until the picture is properly aligned.

Then you hit the ok button and a selection of options come up on the screen and you highlight the one you want and hit ok.



Because I had the negatives placed in the holder correctly I simply clicked ok for saving to the SD card each time.

Storing the Photos
I am always obsessive about having pictures/photos stored where I can find them and in a really organized fashion which makes sense but unfortunately my husband is not.

I hate it when he takes several pictures that are very similar and keeps every single one of them instead of deleting most and only keeping the best.

I also hate it when there is a blurred picture or one that makes someone look horrible and he doesn't delete it (like when he tends to take photos of me while I am eating or in an animated discussion with someone or when I'm standing outside a country church on a hill and the wind is blowing so that my hair looks like it has a life all of its own - yes all of these have happened and in the last year).

Our other problem is some photos would be on Fred's computer and some on my computer and then some would be on his old computer and some on my old computer and then some we suddenly would think of but didn't know where they were - PANIC

So with all of this type of thing making me rather annoyed about my photos I wanted to do this job right.

I made a folder for scanned photos, then folders within this for groups of years and then folders within each group for more groupings.

Here is the example of the 1970's Group



Then here is the example of the folders scanned so far within the 1970-1977 group




Here is one of the scanned pictures (my penpal & her mum) from the Barcelona 1970 folder as it was scanned



and then here it is when I cropped the sides.



Not bad for a 44 year old negative!

I'm thankful we bought the scanner when we saw it at a bargain price and I'm thankful we will be able to enjoy the memories these photos will bring.

I'm also enjoying the scanning but it is going to be a long job.












Wednesday, 23 July 2014

I Missed His Hands - A Dose of Encouragement


Being a blogger means that there is always something I can be doing in preparation for another blog post, or for revamping the look of the blog, or for future scheduling, or in social media, or reading other bloggers.

So when my husband has to go away on business trips I know that all of those things plus other family, and friends and church activities will keep me busy and I will not really miss him all the time.






However this last time he went away, I found that I was missing him a lot.

Now the strange thing about it was that I missed his hands.

A few different times I would suddenly picture his hands in my mind and I just missed not seeing them and holding them.

Of course I did naturally miss the things he would do for me around the house.

And I did sort of miss the things he would do that often make me smile - playing the guitar, playing the keyboard.

But mainly I missed his hands.
I missed not seeing them each day.

Maybe it was because we can face time (even when he is in Morocco or Azerbaijan) and so I can see his face even when he is away but don't normally see his hands while we chat.




But whatever the reason it really struck me as odd that I missed his hands.

Then I was drawn to think back to one morning in church when the message was on the hands of Jesus.

How practical his hands were.

Considering all the things He did with His hands.


The hands of Jesus were the instruments of His Blessings.





  • He placed His hands on children to bless them and on others.
  • He placed His hands on lepers to heal them.
  • He used His hands to break the bread and fish before feeding the 5,000.
  • He used His hands to pull Peter out of the water.
  • He placed His hands on the funeral bier to raise the son of the widow of Nain.


In church we sometimes sing a kids chorus called "Jesus' hands were kind hands"



Fred's hands have not been used in all of those situations but they have been used to help me and comfort me and they hold mine each morning as we pray together.


I am thankful for Fred's hands.


Some of the things Fred's hands have been used for to help and encourage me:

  • To Praise God
  • To play the guitar
  • To play the piano or keyboard
  • To read the Bible






  • To pray with me
  • To show me the beauty of God's Creation (he knows more about nature than I do)
  • To make me coffee each morning
  • To help our grown-up children with practical things
  • To lift down things from high shelves for me
  • To drive me about when my foot is painful
  • To hold and carry heavy objects for me
  • To help to keep our grandchildren safe





I am thankful for Fred's hands.

We are all thankful for the hands of Jesus.

BUT

We need to be the hands of Jesus at different times for one another.













Sunday, 20 July 2014

It's God's Love #3

Welcome back to this new Sunday Series.


There will be a simple, short post each week
consisting of a Bible Verse around the topic of
God's Love and I would be very pleased if you
would join me each Sunday.










When Paul is writing to the Corinthians he obviously thinks something is important and needs to be said as the finishing note for the end of his letter.


2 Corinthians 13:14


He exhorts them to pay attention to how they should live


Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.


BUT

he is not finished yet


He then leaves them with a great blessing





Love of God.

Grace of Jesus.

Fellowship of the Holy Spirit.

Be with us all.


AMEN - So be it.









Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Our Name Meanings - A Dose of Encouragement


Well in a way it all started with my sister and a minister.

Of course it was all before I was born many years ago.






Fred's parents were trying to choose a name for this their third child, their second boy.
In the end they decided to call him after an uncle & a minister so he got Frederick S.... but has always been known as Fred (except on some occasions when I'm a bit annoyed at him or really want him to know that I need his attention and then he gets a very long drawn out Frederick!)


So what has my sister got to do with the minister then?

Nothing personally, but just as the minister was responsible for one of Fred's names my sister was somewhat responsible for my name.


My sister was 10 years old when I was born and there had been no other brothers or sisters and later were no other children born to my mum and dad.
When my parents were choosing a name for me they thought they should let her have some say in the matter.
Each name they suggested she didn't like for one reason or another, some because she didn't like people she knew at school who had the same name.

Then when they suggested Sandra apparently she said that would be ok because there was a girl at school called Sandra and she was ok.

So I was named Sandra.

And I am thankful that they named me Sandra.





Lots of people have said at times that they don't particularly like their name but I have always liked mine although I do remember as a child trying to imagine that I had a different middle name from the one my parents had chosen for me.


Many years later Fred and I met and fell in love and got married.
The only other person that I had known with the name Fred was my mum's cousin who I always called uncle Freddie but my Fred was always Fred.






When our children were born we thought it was important how we chose their names and we wanted to make sure we gave them the names God wanted them to have so we got a book of name meanings and read it through.

Of course I checked out Fred's name to see what it meant and found it was of Germanic origin and meant


Very appropriate for my husband.

But I could not find the meaning of my name.


I could find Alexandra and some suggested my name was short for that but I had been named Sandra not named Alexandra and then had it shortened.

I tried other ways but could not find anywhere that would simply give the meaning of Sandra.
However I was convinced that one day I would find the meaning of my name.


A few years afterwards when the 2 boys were small and I was basically a wife, a mum and a teacher, I got to thinking about what role I should have - what did God intend for me.
I clearly remember praying and asking Him what is my role and I also clearly remember the answer that came me.




Perhaps I had better explain.

Fred became an elder in our church before our first child was born and about 6 months later he became the leading elder.  It was a small church so we were both involved in a lot of things and he was also the worship leader.

So I sort of accepted what I felt I had heard as my answer for that time and was ok with that.


Some years later after we had had our third child our girl, I came to thinking about that same topic again and so again I prayed to know from God what I was supposed to be.

Again I heard



and again I accepted that.

Shortly after this we moved to live in America for 3 years and then back to Northern Ireland and back into the church we had previously been in.  
Then raising three children with a husband who was now travelling often with his work and still so busy with church was not always easy but I suppose you could say we settled into a routine and coped with it all.  

However there came another time when other ladies in church were talking about what roles God had for us all in life so again I went to God with the same question as before and this time


I got the same answer




Well I reckoned that this had happened three times now so maybe I should just truly accept this and I have never asked this question of God again.


Now I did not ever consider that God was telling me that I was not of as much worth as Fred and Fred has never made me feel like that.

I also did not think that I was in a second rate role.

Nor did I think that it meant that I was to sit back and not do anything while Fred did everything, and I certainly did not believe that I could only do things to support Fred.

As well as actively supporting Fred wherever I could I also supported him by being the wife he could rely on to make the right decisions while he was travelling with work and giving a good stable home situation for our children.

This did not mean that I did not use the other talents God had given me so I was active in the women's prayer group in church, the craft club and also led the children's work.


Later when our children were teenagers I was still interested in crafts and joined a group of ladies in a "Country Market" organisation.  One of the things I made was a selection of Name meanings and so again I was back in the position of looking for the meaning of my name.


This time I finally found it,


                  Sandra is of Greek origin and means




Well I was right and I am thankful that I had heard properly from God.

I was also thankful that I had listened and accepted and acted on it.






Just because I did not play an up-front, titled, leadership role or preached to everyone in the church (I did lead women's meetings and speak occasionally at them) I never felt that I was not of value or not using the talents I had.
Our children were as important to us as the people within the church and our responsibility was first to them and then to the church so between us we had plenty to do to bring them up in the nurture and knowledge of Jesus.

God's purpose for each of us is unique but it is always within the boundaries of scripture because His Word does not change as He does not change.