December 19, 2013

Christmastime at Gramma's House`

Christmastime 2013

This is the first and only artificial tree we have ever had.  We got it in 2006 when we first moved to Brundidge, Alabama. I started [ & have continued] a theme that consists of Gold, Silver, White & Clear Glass Ornaments.  Each year I have found a new ornament that fits with this color scheme. This year I found two.  There were 6 large Gold Balls & 12 faux mercury glass pine cones. The tree is 9 feet tall- the same as the living room ceiling. In 2006 our youngest grand daughter was very impressed by Gramma's decorating style. Now at almost 16 not so much.  Her observation goes like this: "But Gramma, there's no COLOR . You need some color!" [Yes, I know. I have to work on this photography thing!]
Looking Forward,
Contributors on

December 18, 2013

Reflections from Personal Facebook Posts August 17 - 2013 Forward

 August 17, 2013  [One More Day]
Major FAMILY TIME...sweet one on one time w their Dad/Pop /more coming tomorrow- we see gifts every day-and GOD DOES NOT GIVE .SHABBY GIFTS--good and perfect ones HE knew the friends and neighbors and church family who would support and surround us right now!!  
Ted Percel Harrison-
A God Fearing Man
September 11, 1937 - August 18, 2013 10:30 p.m. 

Now>Eternity in whatever Heavenly, Glorious form God has Arranged for him/us.
 The youngest child  of Daisy and J.T. Harrison
A Baby Brother of John, Betty and Trice Harrison
A Sweetheart, A Husband-
Father, Daddy, Dad...then "Daddy"-
-and My Silver Fox-
God's plan is perfect..that is not up for discussion or debate..
"This is the DAY [s] the Lord has made...

We will continue to rejoice in Him our Lord and Saviour.
forever and forever
*June 21,1959 - August 18, 2013

August 21, 2013
A note from a precious friend Pam Smith:
I met Ted and Jonell about 7 years ago. The first time I saw them, I thought what a beautiful couple. After my many years of being their friend I saw just what a beautiful, God loving, God fearing couple they are.

Ted was blessed by God. You can see it in his family and see how his walk with God impacted their very being. He left a legacy with his kids, hi
s grandkids and all of us who were fortunate to KNOW him. It is a legacy of godliness, faithfulness, goodness and hope. He made many memories with his family and not only did he teach them, he showed them and walked beside them.

He had faith in the future and he trusted God to be assured of the promise he was given that his home in the kingdom was real.

Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

My last visit with Ted and Jonell was a trip that I made home to be with them. I must admit it was a selfish one. He was having difficulty with nausea and vomiting. I came to find avenues to help him be rid of the nausea and vomiting and get stronger so he could have quality of life as the end was nearing, also to help Jonell with the difficulty of caring for him knowing that his time with us was limited.

I could tell that Ted being the strong man the ONE in CONTROL already knew how to walk these last few weeks. He didn’t need me. But he knew how very much I loved him and Jonell. While I was there he completed his funeral arrangements, making sure Jonell would have everything she needed without complicating her life, clearing up paperwork and then he was at peace knowing he had done what he needed to do.

Hebrews 11:16 says, “But now they desire a better place that is a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” Ted sought that better place and he has gone home to that heavenly city.

Ted not only showed us how to walk with God, he showed us how to die with dignity always in control. Even to saying that it was time to call Bob. What a role model. He not only knew how to live well, but how to die well, surrounded by his beautiful, loving family who were so blessed to share those last moments with him.

I know when he busted those doors to heaven wide open God said, Well done good and faithful servant……Come and share your master’s happiness. Matthew 25:23 

  *Pam Smith


August 30, 2013

Though my heart is full of tears at this farewell
For you are [wonderful], I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell
For you are wonderful, I have loved you dearly
[you have loved me dearly]
More dearly than the spoken word can tell
[These are words from a Roger Whitaker song]

  The "My cup runneth over " lyrics are an old ED Ames song..I blended the two songs together [ accidentally ] Beautiful words anyway!


August 30, 2013
7 a. m> '"This is Another Day the Lord has made...I will CONTINUE to rejoice and be glad in it!"

September 4, 2013
Psalm 92: 1-2>It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night,...

September 11, 2013
I know satan would want to defeat today remembering that 9-11 was/is Ted's birthday- so I am thinking the best way to find victory in that would be to turn it around by focusing on OTHERS...beginning with Others who have the same Birthday..   Psalm 48:1 Great is the Lord,& most worthy of praise!

September 30, 2013

Still trying to ORDER MY a world so new and different. A new start...maybe I can do better THIS WEEK!

November 12, 2013
Sitting on our front porch in the early morning I am asking boldly w expectation "Lord God, just show me how to do this" then give me the spirit, the will, the heart to wait, listen and hear from YOU." I am not aiming for a super woman title; I just want to be USABLE.
Life can at times be so difficult EVEN as we "walk with Christ" and lean on him...HOW CAN PEOPLE HANDLE IT WITHOUT that Security we have knowing where it's all leading and how/where we will spend ETERNITY !!!

I am trying to compose a one liner I would want to share with someone I love and fear they don't know Christ; HEAVEN IS REAL - HELL IS REAL-Come to Him while you can!

November 12, 2013
Sitting on our front porch in the early morning I am asking boldly w expectation "Lord God, just show me how to do this" then give me the spirit, the will, the heart to wait, listen and hear from YOU." I am not aiming for a super woman title; I just want to be USABLE.

November 13, 2013
We invest our ALL in our Children-Our energy, resources, heart -When done well we've GIVEN AWAY our selves and with the right heart never considered it a sacrifice until looking backward. Parenting just like MARRIAGE, when done well is in retrospect a life of sacrificial Choices. [not in sync w what our culture is SELLING at all]   

My [Obligatory] Thanksgiving Post

No the hollow, emptiness that washes over me so many times each day has not gone. No the sick inside feelings that turn to nausea have not stopped. At this point I cannot even imagine a time when tears will not be a normal part of days and nights. I don't have a clue about what's ahead.

BUT DON'T interpret that to mean I am a hopeless mess WITHOUT A THANKFUL HEART here at Thanksgiving. How could... I not be full of thankfulness when I have the security of my Savior-a lifetime of God's provision & mercy-mORE THAN HALF A CENTURY of being loved, cherished & protected by ONE devoted husband and this Ahmazing family he left behind...for a time. Just as we can have PEACE IN A STORM..we can still be so thankful while surrounded, even awash with sadness and emptiness...God is Good..Still~ Grab hold of that and don't let go ESPECIALLY if you too are [still] hurting in this Season of Thanks Giving

December 6, 2013
Such a rainy morning as this can be dreary or depressing I suppose but I react to it as another incredible part of Creation God put in place for us. The heavy almost pounding downpour gets my attention totally and then when it slows to various tempos of pitter patting it kinda slows me down within..So many weather moments like this found us on the front porch taking it all in..wondering why we the only humans stirring about, sharing prayer and devotion time talking about our family..the Grands and we usually remained there until the wind began to blow sharing too much of the wet stuff with us. As rain would set in it usually seemed like just the time for a fresh cup of perked Coffee. Ah, Yes- those were THE DAYS!

December 11, 2013
Such a Beautiful Sunny Cold morning outside-As I slowly awakened and lay in bed thanking God AGAIN for Life, Breath & Salvation & asking Him for another day to Show Me How to Do This- I bumped into this thought: "He knew/knows from the beginning what we would do /or not do with this LIFE....and He gave /gives it to us ANYWAY" hold that thought I think there's some precious food for thought worth pondering here.
Ahhhhhhhh, What a God we serve!

December 2013
Such a time for reflecting and considering all the challenges of this season, 2013 for our family-it COULD be overwhelming
-so I'm choosing to rejoice and dwell on the sweet family gathering and Sunday worship with a son, our daughter and a grand dau and an unselfish gift of lunch on Sunday with one son. A treasured moment in time to hold dear.
If you walked in our house right now w only me here you would wonder at the Christmas music TOTALLY FILLING THE HOUSE [yes LOUD] LOL... perhaps to drown out & drive away any small flicker of a discouraging spirit ???
Oh lord God fill our spaces, our hearts and minds w so much of YOURSELF that there is no room for defeat, discouragement only for tender hearts filled w HOPE...and where hearts may not be tender we pray for BROKENESS..and submission -and where there could be blindness to TRUTH open eyes to see truth....Ahhhhhhhhhh after that a willingness to act upon that truth ...THEN - VICTORY [in YOU]

Editorial Note:  Keep in mind my purpose for this blog and record of a time I could accurately describe as The Most Awful of  Days and The Most Wonderful of Days.  This  Like Gramma's House blog's intent has always been to be placed in the hands of our Children and Grands for a time when we are no longer a physical presence in their lives.  Jonell Harrison

December 14, 2013

Our House~Tis the Season


Just For You


A little scene on the front porch beside Ted's  Rocking Chair-using  cones from Magnolias at our Library

 For the past 8 years since we've had an Artificial tree
 I find a new ornament-
This year it's 6 large Gold Balls from a shop
in Georgia at Thanksgiving
Once I get it up...I don't want to take it down.
Ted was always ready to pack it up and send it
back to the attic a couple of days after Christmas,
Not me...'Just two or three more days~'

OOPS, I see something missing from
the Mantle Scene-
The Glass Jewels in the empty panes-
It will get done but I won't promise
the pictures will get posted
It is STILL Christmas
Because Christ Came, Died,
Arose & Lives
It's CHRIST mas  Still!
Looking Forward ~

December 11, 2013

This I Know-

This I Know

Oh Lord, My God,
You are mine 
Of this I am sure.
I know Whose I am.

There are days when I don't study the Word You left for me.
Some days I don't devote significant time to talk with you
But I know Whose I am

 Many moments I don't know
 which turn to take
What my earthly purpose is now.
This I know -
To whom I go for the Answers
  direction or  comfort.
You carry me when I cannot.
 You never promised to take me off the
Life's Storms list
But you did promise to walk with me...
Carry me and still be there on the other side.
I know Whose I am.
this is not up for debate or discussion
 Humanly I wish for this time to "not be'
However the way to avoid this painful path
 is to have lived a life without Loving deeply 
Or being loved so completely.
Thank you  for this Love Story
  I have experienced and
 For this amazing family  surrounding me
Continue to hold us close
and place a hedge of protection
around all our relationships.

Now, I come  humbly asking for
the Grace and direction for
 the Next Chapter.


Looking Forward,

Contributors on

November 09, 2013

Looking Back While Trying ~ To Move Forward~

May 2013

As long as I breathe  my Love ~
I will look at this world for both of us.
As long as I can,
I will TAKE PICTURES AND COUNT  the birds.
I will plant, prune, gather and dry the roses.  
 I will gaze up at the night skies
and marvel at  the stars
for both of us,
As we did together.

As long as I breathe,
I will continue to soak up Creation around me..
for both of us,
as we did together.

I will continue to gather the naturals in the ditches and woods as the seasons produce wonderful specimens for  decorating and remember how you always tolerated it [until  you understood]  at the beginning of Fall.
I  will remember how I  always reminded you to  be on the lookout for  sweet gum branches or perrrrfect small pine cones or gnarly branches. At Easter I reminded you  to hunt for the branches with thorns for a GUM DROP TREE.  [or was that Christmastime? ]

Remember the  lichen I peeled from fallen rotting trees by the creek? And the remnants or  layers of  almost completely rotten trees? They might be called "driftwood wannabees."  It's what you settle for when you live nowhere near the beach.  Long ago you would ask "What in the world do you want with that?" Over time you saw the unique one of a kind  creations they came to be and stopped asking.  I suspect you were even proud of my strange creativity. You must have bragged about it...considering the things your work friends would save and send home to me...hornets nests, huge acorns and pink, rose shaped  rocks from Colorado.

You were always willing to tackle anything. .if someone else had done it you could learn to and when we became farmers for a decade we worked so hard together and had such  a full rewarding taught me so much.  I learned the value of very basic tools.  I am so impressed with what one can accomplish with pulleys, levers, ropes and 'a come along.'

In another era you would have been a FARMER....AND STILL FURTHER BACK IN  TIME YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN THE Pioneer people tell stories about.  I've  loved observing that you spent your days gathering information ...but never  compelled to impress the world with how much you had stored away...not even family.

I learned from you that our culture needs today to learn anew  words and traits like:  Honor, Respect, Submission, Obey,  God Fearing, and  Gentleman.  You mirrored those traits for not only our children but anyone else who was perceptive.

I always admired that you never learned pretentious, flowery prayers.  I don't think I ever  saw you intimidated by wealth or one's  station in life.  Some might have thought at times you were racist or prejudiced however I have never known you to treat anyone differently or badly based on the color of their skin. You did have zero tolerance for people who backed away from responsibility but that
had nothing to do with race.

When I am alone I will sit and remember [or read, or cry or pray] in my beautiful wisteria arbor..another labor love from you for me.  Even though I had it on your honey do list for about 5 years  you set out to get it done after the cancer diagnosis last year .another in a long list of  'a labor of love' from my silver fox.  I always  knew it would get your own time. And, by the way, I did notice when you planted the additional Knockout Rose bushes this past spring..especially the one over by the wisteria arbor. I knew what you were doing.

I will swing in the back yard swing you built -
and remember the last talks we had there
I will hide out alone on the deck. 
And on the front porch I will  cry my heart out,
again and again
 as I glance over at your Rocking Chair.

I  will remember the day  we tried to sit for Ursula to take pictures -in the back yard swing. It was just too hard.  We were not prepared for that. It was not possible to hide the pain and emotion from our faces. I so hate those pictures..they break my heart all over again.  We did better the next day with the whole family there. You endured by your own choice a long hard day with company ...then at night whispered as you slipped into the bed ..  "It was a good day. It was a good day."

I cannot even imagine how our four children would have turned out had they been raised only by a loving mother...and without the balance, the strength, steadiness and wisdom of the God fearing Dad and devoted husband you were.  That 's what God intended family and marriage to be.

We had months to talk about our feelings, our fears..our life, our wonderful life. We covered it  all those mornings on the front porch.  So many prayers, tears. I don't have to speculate about what you would want me to do, how you would want me to live without you. I know. You want me to go on with life and not grieve forever. I never made any promises there.

Oh, that someone could show me how to ORDER  MY DAYS
 in what is now a different and new world..
a world
without the rest of myself.

As long as I can, my Love~
I will look at this world for both of us.
As long as I can,
AND COUNT  the birds.
I will plant, prune, gather and dry the roses.  
 I will gaze up at the night skies
and marvel at  the stars
for both of us,
As we did together.

As long as I can,
I will continue to soak up Creation around me..
for both of us,
as we did together

....for both of us

Later, My Love ~ jh /2013

  Contributors on

November 06, 2013


 I've set up a large table on the deck at the rear of our house..
 With the use of a wonderful handcrafted bench [ reclaimed wood ]
my husband built on the spur of the moment two years ago as we
were setting up for a pre wedding family party 2011...
and freshly painted metal chairs this table can seat either six or eight easily enough.

I started with my generous stash of Burlap by the Yard
Then added  my most recent Flea Market Napkin find,
Throw in everything that speaks Fall to me
 gathered from the entire house and a stack of
FIESTA dishes

I seldom set a table with ONLY ONE COLOR of Fiesta..
I usually mix the colors, but  very deliberately
Today I just threw them out there..
The end result comes out
Every's a no brainer ladies!

I love FRESH materials to work with...
I adore dried NATURAL materials from the wooded areas
[sometimes  gathering fallen leaves from my yard]
I cannot live without a supply of small  bottles  [for weed flowers]
Green glass is my favorite..
And it's okay to mix up a few [cheap, cheap] Dollar Store pumpkins
Along with some perfect & distinctive Ceramics..
Just Mix It Up girls!

I hope you took notice of the
Grampa Goblets
Nooooooooo, it's not fine crystal
but it brings along with it FINE MEMORIES
of my Grandpa Mobley always drinking from those..
thus the 'tag' Grandpa's Goblets ~

Note: You did see that there's no room for serving platters
and dishes of  scrumptious seasonal foods...that's okay
We'll do this thing Buffet Style - setting up another large table ..or two as the food shows up!

What better choice for Fall tablescapes than

Let's all run over to Heather's
and check out her Tips & Tricks
being shared for our inspiration today!

Contributors on

October 31, 2013

The Christmas Penny Auction- 2012

About a family activity this past [2012] Christmas
I called it a PENNY AUCTION. The items up for auction were from my personal Gift closet inventory..some from super sale shopping and others were re-gifting offerings.  Let's face it, at this point in my life there is just no more space available-walls, floor or attic storage. I NEED virtually nothing...but 'if you must bring me a gift could we make it something I can eat, drink or burn [ like CANDLES].

 I announced the Penny Auction to our family group  of 18  as we celebrated on December 23rd in Brundidge.  Instructions and information given to the Christmas gathering:
  • Check your  pockets and purses for money - Coins folding money
  • Share your money with anyone who has no coin stash
  • The Auctioneer makes the rules-Gramma designates the Auctioneer 
  • The rules may change at the whim of the auctioneer
  • The auctioneer can decide what to do with the money he takes in*if this has not been addressed beforehand.
 Everyone participated enthusiastically with minimal manipulation. [do you believe that???]

 It was  fun  and 17 and 12  yr old Grandsons  proved to be a really good [ pawns ] auctioneer...taking direction quite well.  Who would have thought the  12 yr old  grandson would have been willing to seriously compete for an Apron!

 -That gift closet is definitely not empty so after a few conferences among us in recent months IT HAS BEEN DECIDED: 
 The Second Annual Penny Auction 
will be  this year on the weekend immediately preceeding  December 25th
 at the Harrison House.

Note: No copyright or ownership of any kind here..feel free to MAKE IT YOUR OWN w Gramma's blessings!

Sharing with Heather  :

*  All these can be changed - This year 2013 we may add FOLDING MONEY  instead of loose change. Perhaps this would be the year to use this money raised for something we choose to do in Memory of our  Much Loved One.

Contributors on

October 25, 2013

The Heart to See ~

Early morning sounds- late October Morn~
Created by God,
Broadcast throughout Creation ~
 pausing in the deep south,
 Right here on Fleming Street~ for me!
As I slip into my freshly painted yellow [willow] chair
with my chunky
Favorite  YELLOW Mug
 of hot  freshly brewed
Perked Coffee
[ no Hardy's coffee here today]

You are not seeing & hearing a congregation of BIRDS?
That's because
They Are ALL here in
There's  Chirp, Chirrrrp,  cheep, Cheep, Cheeeeeeep
Twit, twitter, tweeeeeeeeeet, twip, twirrrrrrrp

Praise God from whom all blessings flow~

Looking Forward,

Contributors on

October 19, 2013

Part 2- Social Gatherings of Another Time

I  shared  a post with you some time ago about Cane Grindings in the rural south.  At that time I promised you we would talk about other social events common to the the rural south.  Now on to another way we entertained ourselves: Note that I am referring to mid century, deep south/Georgia.[ 1940's ]

[ Please note these are the personal photos of Jonell W. Harrison- not to be copied without specific permission  2013 ]

Obviously not many of us have vintage [ or older ] photos of these wonderful old buildings and very few photos  of the place, the people, the social gatherings we are sharing with you from our own personal recollections.

For that reason you are seeing posts of a few remnants of the far past that others have lovingly restored  or in some cases reconstructed . What a labor of love these primitive homes, bridges, churches and other buildings were.

In  the Fall, Families would gather for  PEANUT can ditto almost everything in the account of cane grindings-It was the same event  featuring  PEANUTS pulled from the earth/fields, hauled  often in tobacco sleds to the farmhouse/outbuildings, rinsed in wash tubs etc to remove all the dirt, pulled from the bush [that was above the ground-peanuts grow attached to roots in the soil]. then turned into often that same cast iron syrup pan with fire underneath and boiled..Another difference was Peanuts were eaten on the spot, not packaged for sharing and taking home like the syrup.

Oh, yes the peanut boil came  late summer and the sugar cane was a little later in the season around thanksgiving. We always had things to look forward to. Can I convince you this was a real social event we actually anticipated  as one would a dance or birthday party? True!

Now, remember these gatherings were opportunities for the children to romp and play, creating their own brand of fun and games..Also, the teenagers found this setting ideal for their social activities like games designed with the end result presenting  them with times with that girl/boy they already had a crush on..a chance for pairing up for a little walk down the lane under the Moonlite Autumn Sky. ..hand in hand, of course with delightful whispered conversations  unless they were overtaken by a sudden attack of timidity. Then of course they were both relieved to join their groups of friends again.

Some of these photos were taken in Troy, Alabama at the Pike County Pioneer Museum.

On the road back [from Iowa] through Branson, Missouri-headed south to Alabama
If you will find time to run back to this spot for a visit  I will share another group of incredible primitive remnants from another time..located not from from us here in south Alabama.

Looking Forward~
Contributors on

October 07, 2013

F A M I L Y ~ F A L L ~ F E S T I V A L S & F U N

October usually seems like a great time for a family gathering - Even in the deep south of the U.S.A we can find a few fall leaves and branches with that AUTUMN look...shades of Fall. 


There are always pine cones and with a little diligence one can gather up a handful of wonderful acorns then all you need is a small basket of pecans and won-der-ful armload of dried corn stalks.


Now all you need is  a big pot of home made chili, some great southern cornbread, a few guests volunteer for bringing a salad and a dessert and finish off with a crowd of people...not just anyone. This gathering requires  people who love to spend time with loved ones -that would be both friends and relatives-LOVED ONES!




September 12, 2013

Falling Into Fall 2013

Ahhhh Another Season- 
Just a while ago I thought we might be rushing the Fall season-
Now here we are just days away from what our calendars tell us is officially
Autumn or Fall
Which word do you prefer?
I usually call this simply
But I must admit I do love  the word 

While I am most definitely a 
I find I am not ready for all the wonderful changes I love making around me
That's why I refer to  what is happening [ or not ] as
Confession time my Blogger friends
You Can make a difference with a little touch here and there
When you cannot find the wonderful little fall accents in the attic and
Your local stores can't seem to get the new Fall inventory onto the shelves
You can still perk things up with a few basics-
We'll just call it Minimal Decorating
~not "making do"..
This is intentional
[I hope my Falling into Fall will encourage you who like me may have been overwhelmed with LIFE
recently and thought you might just SKIP THIS SEASON ]

This setting is much the same year round
The wild life and natural gourds and baskets are basic
I just swap out seasonal accents [like the pumpkins]
as the seasons call for a little change

Remember that beautiful fresh wreath you  splurged on for fall 2012?
It can represent your "good taste" as a
FOR 2013

Yes I do love that once a year extravagant fresh wreath but
It is so neet to be able to pull out a good silk fall wreath from the Attic Stash-
It covers nicely until I can make that annual Fresh Wreath purchase

Keeping it simple again-
Just a little natural/gourds, some basic Fiestaware,
a little Dollar Store, a small treasured gift,
several flea market finds [always!]
and of course

* Special invitation for you to join
Second Annual Fall Home Tour

Looking Forward,

September 08, 2013

Keep It Simple Small Bath Ideas

A Realistic use of  the space and  Keeping it Simple -
The end result is a Fresh, Clean, Uncluttered small bath
With just a W h i s p e r  of Luxury

Join me today at
Heather's for Tips & Tricks Tuesday

Actually we DID DO THAT- Sooooooooooooo we spent $500. to relocate the toilet in order to make use of the over the head space on the wall. The right hardware made possible the floating shelves. Even I could do that!
And...what's not to like about the subway tiles?
Did I mention  I love Black  & White?

We went with the Keep it Simple plan...
 I forgot to mention that I invested in a new, [tastefully feminine]  shower curtain - reduced at World Market.

We had a choice. We could whine and complain that our main bathroom [mine] was too small
and a remodel would be a major expense we could not afford to tackle...Or we could make the best of what we had
We chose to focus on  the wonderful old lavatory- pedestal sink.
 That's a good thing in a small bathroom. 
The floor is those old 1inch tiles from 'days gone by'. 
We could work with that!