Archive for the ‘weather’ Category

I have been camera crazy this year, filled with intentions of having one of those beautiful blogs filled with artistic pictures that speak effortless, silent poetry. Life has kept me busy, stunned me with its picturesque every day. This is my small sample. Me in one of my creative Christmas outfits. Here in Colorado the weather has scarcely ventured above freezing for two weeks, so I’m a little bored of my usual sweaters, inspiring creative ensembles.

There’s another cause, too. In December, for several reasons, we should cancel laundry: 1. We are buying new clothes for Christmas parties anyway. 2. We are receiving new clothes at Christmas. 3. We are never at home, so laundry is impossible. 4. There’s going to be enough guilt from all the candy and baked goods we eat, and all the New Year’s Resolutions we instantly break. Why add unfinished laundry?

(To be honest, my laundry is all caught up as of about an hour from now. And I really don’t get new clothes at Christmas or make New Year’s Resolutions. Nor do I feel guilty about my sugar intake.)

For my birthday I hosted a party at which we watched the movie, Penelope (starring Christiana Ricci, James McAvoy, and Reese Witherspoon). The bright contrasting colors inspired me. For my parties I usually have either candles or flowers. These were too perfect, and looking exquisite in the daisy vase a friend gave me for my high school graduation.

Aren’t the colors so vibrant?
Fall lingered in Colorado. I’m glad I have pictures to remember it by, not only because it was beautiful, but also because now it’s so cold that I can’t believe the Indian Summer we had.

See. Winter.
For weeks I went around with my camera in the passenger seat of my car so that when I found beautiful colors, driving through the right part of old Denver, I could snap a shot at a stop sign! It turned out great!

This old house was so charming as I drove that I took a picture of it, too. Denver is a lot nicer place when you see the cozy residential areas near downtown.
It can be a frustrating place. There is something nostalgic about railroad crossings, I admit. And I’m glad I had my camera, because otherwise the wait that day would have been intolerable. Trains are such dirty, slow, loud vehicles!
Speaking of waiting, that is one of only two things that I have done this season. The other is enduring impossible stores with gifts impossible to find or afford. I’m ready to stop waiting in lines and in traffic and behind trains and for people to come or go or catch up. My idea of nice waiting is to be curled up in front of the Christmas tree with a book, Nat King Cole and Bing Crosby crooning in the background, a nice plate of fudge and a cinnamon roll handy.

These are some of our family’s signature cookies. Admit it. You never want just one of those regular-sized cookies. So instead of making you go back until you’ve had three or four, we put the whole serving into one cookie. They’re amazing. And my 11 year old sister is a pro at making them, attributed to her procrastinating style.
Mom tried to recreate the salad she likes from Chik-fil-a. It was so bright and pretty that I had to take a picture.
That’s all.
To God be all glory,
Lisa of Longbourn

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Between Storms


This past week has been an answer to my wishes. Too few storms had come to Colorado yet this season. I love to watch a storm out the back window, or from outside if it’s not raining (too hard). Now we’ve had storms the past four days, I think. In between storms my sisters and I took our digital cameras outside and enjoyed the eerie light. We didn’t know there would be another storm until we looked up at the clouds and saw this:


How beautiful is that? 

In about a week I’ll be up at a camp near Estes Park, Colorado.  The weather there is beautiful, so I’ll be sure to take good pictures and maybe video of that.  You can expect lots of thoughts when I get back, too. 

Even now the leaves are fluttering energetically above my window, and the sky is too dark for the hour.  I love it. 

To God be all glory,

Lisa of Longbourn

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My bones ache dully like an old woman’s when it storms.  There is nothing unbearable about it, and I feel as if nothing can be done.  Rubbing or stretching often are done, with no effect.  Just now I’m feeling this way, and gazing at the skylights – such a romantic word for the only romantic part of the industrial steel box in which I work.  Outside is a storm.  Spring is still here, its violence the infant compared to the full grown warrior of summer.  Today offered one blast of thunder, the long, patient rumble accompanying darker skies and a bit of rain.  I wouldn’t exchange the storm for freedom from pain for anything.  The pain may even awaken me to the conflict outdoors. 
Weather is a conflict, a paradox.  Bodies of air move over or under each other, affecting each other, fighting and at once altering.  It is a bonding and a divorce, a war and a peace.  The clouds hide the sun that formed them, only to be dissolved again or blown away by the solar powered wind. 
There are some kinds of pain I hate.  I rebel.  They are senseless, pure war on life and love.  Yet love always carries pain, the truth of pain against the empty imitation.  I would not give up the love to banish the pain.  They work together even, much as the weather, in its dance of wholeness and growth.  Love sometimes explodes in thunder, accompanied inseparably by the curtain of lightning for a moment giving sight to reality. 
To God be all glory,
Lisa of Longbourn

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In a couple weeks I am planning to go on a weekend roadtrip with a friend.  This being January, and living in the blizzard-prone midwest, I am praying already for good weather.  (You can join me praying for good weather, too.)  My excitement over this trip is such that I’m rather worried about the disappointment a weather cancellation could bring. 
While pondering these facts in church this morning (not because I was distracted, no-o, but because church is relevant to real life), I decided that if the weather changed my plans, I would delight in what God does have for me that weekend.  See, the weather is quite out of my control or yours, and it is my belief that whatever not in my control is particularly in God’s.  (This is only a way to look at the world, because I believe that God is in control of everything; but I must take responsibility for my stewardship of the things over which I have “control.”)  So weather is a gift from God.  Every gift that comes down from above is good.  God works all things together for good to those who love Him and are the called according to His purpose. 
So weather is God’s good gift to me.  I often feel that way.  I could lie back on the ground and watch wisps of fine vapor float over a few stars at a time, contrasting the sharp clarity of the uncovered stars with the pearly veiled stars.  Or there is the brilliantly blue sky deepened and darkened by scattered enormously tall cumulous, filtering out the sunlight to let us glimpse the midnight color of the sky by the light of day.  While out sledding over the Christmas holidays, I lay back in the foot-deep snow, crossed my arms beneath my head, and watched the currents blow geese across the wind-swept sky. 
If the weather alters my plans, I can only conclude that is because God’s plans were so much better.  Whenever God doesn’t give me something I deeply want, I’m almost excited, because it means He has something else – some other course for me.  His ways are always better than my ways. 
Weather.  Lightning.  Rain.  Snowflakes.  Clouds.  Fog.  Wind.  Sunshine.  God’s gifts. 
To God be all glory,
Lisa of Longbourn

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For a couple hours Monday, August 20, beginning at 5:30 AM we experienced the thundering remnants of tropical storm Erin moving up from the gulf, arguably causing more damage by flooding than if she had been a hurricane hitting the shore. We don’t get storms like that in Colorado. Maybe they’re not all that common in Missouri, either. About fifty miles to the north of us 14 inches of rain fell in four hours. Incredibly bright lightning seemed to strike just across the lake from where we were staying, and its thunder echoed through the hills.

The same storm flooded parts of already saturated Texas, wreaked havoc in Oklahoma, as I said, downpoured on Missouri, devastated a town near Toledo, Ohio, and knocked down trees in Chicago, shutting down streets during rush hour.

No sooner did we get home than the weather reports here promised cooler weather and precipitation thanks to the remnants of another former tropical storm, the much-feared category 5 hurricane Dean (much weakened from having spun over arid Mexico before turning north). Here, however, I believe we have only had sprinkles. The usual suspects for flooding got their typical share of rain on the other side of Denver, but we are in the no-rain zone. Tornadoes don’t come here, either. One was seen near Broomfield today, which is another Denver suburb.

We see the neatest weather, then, when we travel. I took the picture below on our passage through Kansas for our vacation.

I also took the week to really begin studying the weather. Moving across parts of three states, from one mountain range, over the Great Plains to another mountain range, made it difficult. And in Missouri we were most of the time stuck in a boring, fair-weather pattern. I think I learned a lot, though, and started a weather journal. I’ve neglected it since returning home, though. There aren’t many windows in my house, and we keep them curtained. At work I am in a closet, dimming or brightening through warehouse skylights being my only indication of weather.

If I ever learn anything really neat or if I see a tornado, I’ll let you know. Many nights I’ve dreamed happy dreams of finally getting to see a tornado, and I wake up almost sure it was real. (My dreams are very real. All the tornadoes look fantastically like those in Twister!) Have any of you had thrilling weather experiences?

To God be all glory.

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