Hello.

Sooo, it’s a God one. There’s just two short tales I have to tell. They’re beautiful and brilliant, mainly because God is. I wasn’t sure whether to tell them, but after listening to a preach today, I decided to.

Number one – I was sat on my settee a couple of weeks ago maybe, at night, feeling pretty low. I call what I was feeling ‘the horrors’ and I was literally sat thinking and had this massive awareness of evil in the world and bad things that can happen or could happen to people I love or people in general. It’s difficult to describe how it felt. I was sort of slumped on the settee with my hoody up, just sat there feeling horrified and really low. I did speak to God, I think I basically said, so I’m here and I’m feeling like this and that was that really. Can’t remember if I said anything else. Then I got up to let the dog out and I went outside and just started singing. It wasn’t worked up, I hadn’t been listening to this song, I wasn’t in one of my ‘got to deal with this and worship modes’. I was just there, with God and I believe He just gave me this song. The song goes ‘you unravel me, with a melody, you surround me with a song, of deliverance from my enemies til all my fears have gone’. (That’s from memory, hope the lyrics are right, the song is called ‘no longer slaves’ if you want to YouTube it..) So I was just stood outside our front door, in the dark, singing this song, then I was absolutely ok. It was a lovely moment. God really does care and acts on it. He can change things in a minute, when it’s right.

The second thing was, not long after, the same week I think, I suddenly became very aware, a sudden realisation of ‘I have a good life, we have a good life!’ This may sound a bit basic but it was a bit of a game changer really. We all like to think we have it a bit rough, to have a bit of a moan, I’m no exception either, but I really did have this exclamation moment of ‘I have a good life! And thinking or knowing that, changes your perspective somewhat. So that was great. Hearing from and being changed by God is really quite something and I really do believe that all you need is a willing, open heart towards Him and He’ll do the rest.

Anyway! Thankyou for reading and good night!

Cathy.

A quick update on the birds.

Hi, just wanted to update people, we now have six 3 week old ducklings and 3 Light Sussex chicks (about a weekish old) in the house, the ducks will hopefully go outside at around 6 ish weeks, but maybe before that during the day if we manage to get the electric fence up soon. Here they are:

With the ducks, we have 4 Khaki Campbell and 2 Ancona’s, I’m hoping and praying that they’re girls! Unlikely, but you never know. They’re so messy, we have a huge drinker in with them, so they can get their beaks in, and even with a drinker they manage to fling water about everywhere. They’re worth it though.

We also have about 13 quail running about in a separate run inside the chicken run. We can’t put the quail out and about in the main run because they’d just fly off. They aren’t laying yet, hopefully soon will. They’re really funny. It was sunny yesterday for the first time in a while, it was gorgeous, and when they’re relaxing they lay outstretched with their legs sticking out like they’re reclining. If I hadn’t read about it I would have thought they were dead a few times by now, because that’s what it can look like.

Yesterday afternoon.

Now, just a word of warning for readers, I got some abuse on my last post from one person, just one person, perhaps obviously about my daring to say that God is good and that He saves us from our sin and frees us. I attempted replying but it was no use, so I ended up deleting the whole thing and blocking them. So comments that are helpful and inquiries that are genuine are welcome, but anything that is hurtful, disrespectful or intended for harm will not receive a reply and will be deleted.

Thankyou.

Cathy.

I’ve been thinking a lot..

I have been thinking a lot over the past couple of weeks, well, the past couple of years really. But a couple of things have happened recently that’s made me think again. I’ve been taking part in Church in the Peak online meetings since covid first arrived on the scene really, I briefly stopped when I came off facebook for Lent, but I rapidly decided to go back on, just on a Sunday for the meeting. It’s open to all, by the way, no matter where you are in the world physically or spiritually. The facebook page is here: https://www.facebook.com/ChurchInThePeak. But stemming from that and a conversation with one of the elders, I’ve started meeting up virtually with the small group we used to be part of (a smaller group that usually meets up in someone’s home during the week). I’ve only met up with them once so far, but it was lovely just to see them and hear them and actually talk about God with others. It was wonderful. It also broke my, ‘I’m not going on zoom or anything like it’ fear! It also broke my, I’ve left therefore I don’t belong thing…that’s rubbish, I do.

But anyway, stemming from this and talking to God, I just wanted to lay out part of what’s been on my heart for a long time. Just briefly. And share a word/brief picture that God gave me when we were first here. I don’t think I’ve ever said it, partly because I’ve been a little afraid to (who is she to say that sort of thing, which is not right).

Firstly, the word.

As anybody who’s looked at any of our posts knows, it is a beautiful place. Ireland is a very beautiful place. But in the first months we were here, I was driving back along the road to our house, I glanced briefly at the hills and fields and for a moment, they were black and almost burnt, it looked like a battlefield, it was barren and horrible and then it went back to normal. I felt God said in that moment that it may look lush and green but the picture He showed me was what it was really like underneath in so many ways. A broken place. He then said ‘but I can restore it and bring it to how it looks, I can make it green and lush’.

I’ve thought about this from time to time and prayed sometimes, but I’m going to make this a prayer now, because if he has said this, we need to partner with Him and do it His way. To do and be what he wants us to do and be.

My vision for people in this country is that people, no matter whether they’re Catholic or Protestant or anything else, I don’t care. They will know God, they will know His freedom and His love, they will know life through Jesus. Eternal life which starts now. A turning around of their lives and this country and the UK (I will always have a heart for the UK). More than anything they will be born again worshippers of Jesus and know the love of God and turn to Him and be changed. There will be forgiveness and freedom from sin and shame and both a turning back to Him and restoration and new life of people born again.

Have a good day!

Cathy.

Happy Sunday!(have some ducklings to look at)

Hi, here’s a video to make you happy, our little ducklings running about and eating and drinking and things! It’s not the best filming in the world, but it’s a lovely sight!

They’re between 3 and 5 days old. They are mucky, but I did clean them out this morning. they LOVE the water!

We’ve had to put them in our old bath because two of them escaped through the gaps in the bars of the cage we had them in last night. J found them curled up in a corner this morning. They all seem very happy and healthy. The last one to hatch had a curled up left foot and I was a bit worried about him, it curled right under. Then I read up a little bit and read that they sometimes uncurl and come right on their own during the first day. So I left it and it has uncurled and he/she (don’t know yet) is now walking properly and seems really well. Praise God! They’re already eating peas and running about and playing. Even Chris loves them.

Happy Sunday! May God bless you to know Him and the hope and love and meaning that only He gives. He even gave life to and cares for these little ducks! But He cares for you so much more (see Matthew 6:26).

Ta ra!

Cathy.

Social?

I’ve come off facebook for lent, mainly as I knew it was getting to be a bit of a problem with how often I log on and scroll and a distraction and a bad habit… but I’ve still been surprised at the effect coming off it has had really. I find myself wanting to log on, but I also find myself hating it, because to be quite honest, it does not do much for me in terms of producing good things. It puts me on edge, it makes me uptight, I find myself checking it over and over and over again, scrolling for absolutely no good reason and it’s very easy for me to react to things without thinking as well, none of which is good. So I think it’s good to have a rest for a bit.

It’s the ultimate comparing yourself to others type site really (almost without realising). and that drags you down. I’m not who I should be or doing what I should be if I’m getting distracted all the time and I think it is one of the ultimate distractions.. I’ve also realised that I’d quite like proper friendships and relationships and again, not often to be had on facebook. It’s a deceptive place, with it’s ease of commenting (or not commenting)/reacting and likes and loves and hates and hugs and sad faces and algorithms and friending and unfriending and reading things into things and blah, blah, blah…… I think I probably will go back on at Easter but not as much, I’m not quite sure how I’ll actually do that yet, but I’m sure it will come clear.

I really like blogging and I also really like not seeing the facebook reactions in a way, it’s good for me, for a while anyway. Hello to people who do react though and thankyou! (this isn’t meant to be insulting towards you, it’s more about me). I’ve thought about stopping everything for a bit, but the blog stays.

Again though, it’s funny (but not really), I came off facebook and then immediately went overboard on Instagram, I then stopped Instagram too and then went onto Twitter (I don’t really post much on Twitter, just blog links), now I’m stopping scrolling Twitter too. I stop one and start to compensate with another. YouTube is a different matter, I’m still thinking that one through. I’m rapidly coming to the conclusion that scrolling though social media and seeing whole heaps of opinions is bad for me (and my family).

The personal stuff that we see on Facebook relating to people we know and love is really lovely and I also love posting things for people back home who can’t see us at all at the moment, partly because we live away and partly because of the pandemic, but for the nice stuff, there’s a whole heap of the nasties and distractions to occupy my mind and thoughts when there’s no need for it.

And no, I’m not having a meltdown 😀 or a breakdown, cutting my hair off and isolating myself, it’s anything but that really. I’ve just decided like I mentioned earlier, I’d quite like some proper relationships, not just facebook ones. I’d like to go outside or do things without thinking about posting, just be outside. Also, really, really need some space to be with Jesus. Just to be with Him and also to read my bible, I have bouts of reading and then bouts where I don’t, mainly, again, because I get distracted. Also, my eyesight isn’t as good as it was a year ago, so I’m reading via an app mainly at the moment aaaaaaagh, growing older…! so hello to YouVersion friends too :D. (I prefer the paper version.)

I’m still thinking about this and surrendering it to God, I sort of think it shouldn’t really be a big deal all this and if it is, what does that say? I also don’t want my kids completely obsessed and on phones constantly when they get older…so yes…surrendering.

Good bye for now.

Cathy.

Down to earth with a bump :D (and ducklings!)

So, after I wrote yesterday about the ‘perfect’ day haha, Littlest stuffed his trousers down the toilet when I wasn’t looking. I then nipped up to the chickens and quail late afternoon, whilst I was up there I realised the quails bedding was soaking, so I was quickly replacing that in the wind and the rain with the quails trying to jump out of their house at the same time. I then got broadsided by the cockerel (well he tried) whilst trying to fetch some fresh sawdust, I then realised the dog had run off and disappeared and on swearing my way back to the house was met by J who informed me that I (the youngest) had flooded the dining room. It turns out he’d upended the dehumidifer in a fit of rage because J wouldn’t make a triangle for him with the magnets. It was quite good actually, there’s an multi extension lead on the floor and somehow the water had missed that… the dog had firmly disappeared.

Anyway, Chris got home around six, went to look for the dog and found him prancing around in someone’s field, thankfully a field without sheep, so all was well in the end. Testing times for my temper..! I find I still have one…

Also! the ducks have started hatching, they’re so beautiful. They’re a lot cuter than chicks. I was a bit nervous about the hatching because I’d read they can be trickier than hens because the hatching time is about a week longer and they need a slightly more humid environment, but they seem to be hatching well so far. Today is actually the official hatching day, four hatched yesterday, one more today and one more is in the process of hatching. There’s three eggs that so far do not look like they’re hatching, but we’ll see. Very excited about having ducklings! Our house may be a bit mad for a bit, we’ve still got young quail in a cage in the dining room, I need to get or make an outdoor run for them, they’re not quite ready to go out. We’ve got a large cage for the ducklings and some chickens are due to hatch in about a week too…I love it most of the time, Chris thinks it’s like a pet shop but seems quite enamoured of the ducklings :D.

Time.

I was thinking this morning, I asked J to draw his best day ever and then I just sat and wrote about what my best day ever might be like, just really quickly. It went something like this:

I would be with my family and be walking somewhere either by a river or out in the peaks (peak district, Derbyshire), it would be warm with a slight breeze. We would just be relaxed and walking but not focused on anything but where we were and that moment with each other. God’s presence would just be all around and literally tangible, almost reach out and touch Him. The kids would be playing and happy and running around and climbing on rocks and we would be relaxed with them, not needing to get anywhere in a hurry.

That’s when it hit me, it’s so important to take time for people and with people. Particularly those close to us. Not the fake time and energy or fake attention, no looking at your watch or over the person’s shoulder for someone else, no sighing and acting like a martyr, no fake love. If we’re going to be like that, we may as well not bother at all. The reason it struck me was that my favourite day would just be ‘being’ with my favourite people and that’s it. No outside pressures, no agenda’s, just being and letting them be. I’m actually not that great at it a lot of the time, but I’m starting to register how important it is. It’s also obvious what my love language is from that I guess :).

Just wanted to get this down.

Also, one more thing, I’ve recorded the first part of my story of getting to know Jesus (my testimony) and uploaded it onto youTube if anyone would like to hear it. This is the link https://youtu.be/kYjI0zAyqx0.

Over and out.

Cathy.

Frustrated..

I’m currently sat at the table with my laptop with the phone next to me playing music and saying intermittently ‘thankyou for your patience, you are moving forward in the queue and will be answered as soon as possible’. Yes, I’ve been locked out of my online UK banking account and am ringing from Ireland to the UK and the messages inform me there’s probably a 25 minute wait. I can get on the app, but I need to get onto the account via the computer to do something…. I feel like I’ve been on the computer trying to sort stuff and not succeeding all day. I feel very, very irritated….. Plus, it’s probably going to cost quite a bit on the phone I would think,,, Oh well!

It’s been a funny day, I’ve been looking for online learning for J for the homeschooling, I think we’ve decided on two, one for reading and one for maths, to complement what we’re doing together. Then I’ve tried to login to a credit card we have for emergencies but can’t because they’ve got our old phone number, so we have to ring them as well, but Chris has to do that one because it’s in his name. He’ll be thrilled! Just looked at my phone, I’ve been on hold for 20 minutes already, the joy. Can’t be helped, I also maybe should have been more careful with logging in to the account, then I wouldn’t have to be doing this….

The kids sound like they’re wrecking upstairs, I doubt it, but it sounds like it. To be fair though, you only have to walk about upstairs and it’s quite loud down here. J was most disappointed that I couldn’t find him something to do, but I’m sure he can manage to find himself something to do for an afternoon. We tend to do the formal stuff in the morning and have the afternoons quite fluid (also so I can do jobs too). Oh, now there’s screaming…also a common theme from today! It will get better.. Turns out they butted heads, so they’re ok now, better than earlier when the littlest bit the eldest when I wasn’t in the room. Poor J.

Anyway, hello. How’s life where you are? It’s still pretty quiet here. With regard to seeing anybody but us that is. That’s ok though, it’s not forever. I’ve sort of got used to just being here in a lot of ways, which is sort of ok, but also a little worrying sometimes! Will I ever go out again! haha. (It is a bit, but not enough that it actually should worry anyone.) I am actually just starting to miss travelling a bit though…just intermittent pangs..

Life is good in general, it’s still beautiful here (obviously) and I’m gaining a bit of a new appreciation. I was looking out of the skylight upstairs last night and remembered when we visited to view the house and Chris stuck his head out smiling (he was excited) and I took a photo, it was very different then! It was a good memory.

There’s always stuff to do, I don’t think we’ve actually been bored since we got here, there’s so much it can send your head in a whirl if you don’t get a grip on it! But it’s good.

The original quails who are about 4/5 weeks old I think, are now outside in their little pen and quite enjoying it and the others are still under heat. We now have eight which look really healthy, out of the ten, one died and one isn’t doing well, I’ve had to separate it for a while to try and feed it up a bit, the others were bullying it, so I’m not sure how it’s going to do, it also runs backwards which is a little odd. But that’s quails apparently!

I’ve been answered! yes! and they were lovely and sorted me out very quickly, I actually managed to remember my memorable word too after a bit of time and a lot of thinking. So thankyou Coop bank!

I’m freeeeeeeeee. Almost. Just got to reset things and do the thing I need to do 😀

See you later (figuratively).

Byeee.

Cathy.

Two years.

Got to mention it today, two years ago today since my dad died. Balk at mentioning it in a way because I can imagine some going, aah she’s on about it again. But yes, I am, two years ago and it still affects me quite a lot, for various reasons, the most basic of all being, he was my dad. But anyway, we’re ok and we’re going to celebrate his life today, or I am anyway, because as far as I can see, I have two choices, celebrate or descend, I descended a bit last night and now I’m just having a relaxed day with the boys. God bless you dad, I’ll light a candle today and think about things and pray.

It’s also been two years since I saw my daughter who lives in London, she was at my mum’s that week, so it’s quite a long time really. Here’s hoping to see people some time over the next year or two. If it gets to September it’ll be two years since the boys and myself actually went back to England! It also marks two years since I started looking at Catholicism, that started more seriously after my dad died really. I’d been Christian for about 10/11 years before that, but things started changing again after he died and God started taking us on a different journey to what we were used to!

As some will already know, we’ve hatched yet more quail, ten more, to be precise. It’s the first time that one I’ve helped out of it’s shell has been ok. Doesn’t seem to be struggling at the moment. I let it push itself out, I think that’s the most important bit for their leg strength to develop. I try not to help, but it was taking too long and I think it would have died if I hadn’t. They’re very cute and tiny! Seems weird to think that in a few weeks they’ll be looking like adult birds. They’re funny little things, you really have to keep an eye on them when they’re little, I’ve already had to rescue one from the side of the heater in their brooder this morning, it was stuck on it’s back. They can get too cold very quickly at this age and that would kill them. (I was going to upload a photo but the signal isn’t playing at the moment, so you’ll have to do without.)

We also have 9 duck eggs incubating at the moment, I think there’s just under three weeks until they’re due to hatch and I’ve ordered some hens eggs to incubate as well, they should come today, then, I think my incubating for this year will be done… I think….maybe…

The bad point about hatching your own is that if you have too many males you have to deal with that, and as there isn’t really much market for cockerels or whatever the male bird is, there are only really two options which are, keeping male colonies, which would be fairly pointless and expensive but always tempting, or killing them. I don’t like the killing as I ‘ve said before, but, it is the sort of life that we came for, to produce our own meat, or that was one of the aims, so it’s part of it. I’ve chosen duel purpose ducks and chickens (suitable for meat or eggs), so I’m hoping there aren’t many males, but if there are, we will be dispatching them at the right time. As I saw someone write recently, don’t hatch if you can’t dispatch….

The weather’s getting better and it’s fairly warm in the polytunnel, so we’ve planted some seeds – salad mainly. Some of which are germinating already. I love this part of the year, when plants start growing or sprouting new leaves and buds. I’ve also planted some raspberry canes and have 5 redcurrant canes to plant this afternoon. Chris has also planted some Silver Birch seeds and is going to try growing them, which is really interesting, we’ve never grown trees from seed before. Chris has also planted a Copper Beech hedge all the way along the front wall, hopefully they’ll grow well and change the look of the place once again.

It seems weird to be sharing this to facebook but not actually being on facebook until Easter at least (if I hold out), but also sort of cool, that I won’t see anything or any reactions! Hello!

I’ll leave it at that for now. God bless you one and all.

Cathy.

Take my hand now, lead me closer, Lord I need to meet you there.

Take my hand now, lead me closer, Lord I need to meet you there.

I’m just sat in the living room with youTube on in the background. The River, by Brian Doerkson has just been on. I love that song. Take my hand now, lead me closer. Yes please Lord.

I didn’t really get Lent until this week, didn’t really get why it was different to other times of the year, I mean, I got the basics like it equating to Christ spending 40 days in the wilderness fasting and resisting the devil and that the tools spoken about were fasting, praying and giving and that it was preparing for Easter, seriousness and sorrow prior to Jesus crucifixion, almost suffering with Him and then having rejoicing and joy with His resurrection. But somehow, I still didn’t ‘get it’. Perhaps this is due as well to the general view of giving something up for lent and people generally give up sweets or alcohol or social media and all that, stuff that generally isn’t very good for them. But I failed to see how that was anything to do with Jesus in a lot of ways, I guess it isn’t in a lot of people’s lives.

I then asked a friend about it and when it was described as (as part of it) a yearly mot, a way of looking and getting rid of any baggage that was getting in the way of your relationship with Christ and living the gospel. Going deeper with Jesus and submitting fully again to Him. Denying yourself in order to be closer to Him and be changed by Him. Being honest about absolutely everything with Him. That the liturgical year is actually a gift from God, guided by the Holy Spirit. Then I got it. I got quite excited about it really and asked God to lead me through it. So I believe He is.

I’m not going to go into the personal aspects, I just want His will in our lives, so I’m submitting basically again, being honest about things that aren’t good in my life (we all have stuff) and trusting Him. And I’m expecting exciting things, I always find some very small things are very exciting, such as when he changes little things/ways in us that aren’t the best and it has a knock on effect of us walking in His ways and His will rather than ours. Change at the very core of ourselves, change that is real. Change that effects other people’s lives too. Change that has eternal consequences.

Cool? I find it all very exciting.

Holy Spirit you are welcome here.