Photo Challenge & Phavorites – Smile

“Raindrops on Roses, and Whiskers on Kittens…ummm…Bunnies?”

~ Oscar Hammerstein II

The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge for this week is Favorite Things. For me, as is true of most of us, God, family, and home tops the list. After these three there are hundreds of items, situations, places, that I love-the list could go on and on.

It’s pouring rain today. Most of the Northeast coast of the U.S. is experiencing rainfall. I thought it a perfect day to photograph a garden rose wearing a veil of raindrops as a favorite thing. When I went outdoors, instead of a dewy rose, the sweetest vignette presented itself: a bunny using my hanging plant as an umbrella. I think this clever bunny is guaranteed to bring you a smile.

Phavorites – The Nativity Story/Christmas Movie Listings Online Guide

I often reblog my favorite tips for seasonal projects or recipes. Every year I also repeat my recommendation of The Nativity Story as a reminder of the events that led up to Jesus’ birth.

My heart is always filled with gratitude as I watch this realistic depiction of God’s perfect plan to bring salvation, through his Son Jesus Christ, to all mankind.

It’s easy to become overwhelmed with holiday shopping and activities. For those of us who find it relaxing to pull up a seat for an hour or two of seasonal entertainment, here’s a terrific movie channel and schedule available through Countdown Until Christmas/Christmas Movie Database. The Journal Sentinel also has a day by day movie schedule that is worth a look. Take a look at this amazing collection of Christmas and holiday movies and their air times. There is also a search box on the site with an amazing database of movies.

Past & Phavorites – Throwback & Nurturing Thursday/The Waltons

I’ve already been playing Christmas music and loving every minute of it. One of my very favorite CD’s is ‘A Walton’s Christmas – Together Again.’ This CD was given to me by my sister many years ago. Not only is it a perfect choice for Nurturing Thursday, the  music and show are also an excellent selection for Throwback Thursday. It’s easy to see how well-loved and played the CD has been over the years by the battered state of the case. If like me, you are immediately uplifted by the opening chords of this song, enjoy listening to the Youtube video below. If you have never seen ‘The Waltons,’ try and find these reruns on your cable channels for enjoyable Christmas nostalgia.

Perspective & Phavorites – Don’t Worry

“Don’t worry about a thing
‘Cause every little thing gonna be alright
Singing’ don’t worry about a thing
‘Cause every little thing gonna be alright.”~ Bob Marley

As young as they are, my grandchildren already talk about memories they have of ‘Nanny’s house.’ My middle grandchild said to me recently, “When I was a baby, I came here, and I would sing.” It turns out this singing was Bob Marley’s song, ‘Three Little Birds.’ When my grandson was a toddler, I watched him several days throughout the week, we’d play Reggae and when our favorite, ‘Three Little Birds,’ filled the living room with its lilting notes, I’d pick him up and we’d dance together. He remembers these moments.


I came to love Reggae music later in life. I’d definitely say ‘Three Little Birds’ is one of my favorite songs. I’ve said before in these posts, the wisdom in the song, echoes Jesus’ words in the Bible.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”

                                                                  ~ Matthew 6:25-27

Today I read an article with a little more proof that Reggae music will make you smile. Dogs prefer Reggae.

Another Reggae group that fills me with joy is Christafari Band.

The dreariness of winter can put a blight on your happiness…take a few moments to listen to some upbeat music and smile.

Phavorites – Buttons


A favorite Christmas gift was this jar of buttons and note from my mother:

“These buttons were from Granny Broadwell’s button tin. Many of them were from the clothes she wore early in her marriage. I can remember some of them. The value of these buttons are not very much, but the person whose clothes they adorned is valuable and precious to all of us. I wanted you to have them. I know you will treasure them. Love, Mom”

I placed the note in an old frame. I want to find a piece of burnt sienna overlay to place over it, for protection, and to give it a look of age. If I can’t find what I want, I’ll try to create a piece out of things I have lying around the house.

Phavorites – Fixer Upper


Season Four of ‘Fixer Upper’ premieres tonight on HGTV at 9:00. I’m looking forward to another season of watching Chip and Joanna Gaines transform shabby houses and yards into unique and beautiful homes and landscapes.

If you have a chance take a look at their new magazine and book, just out this month on newsstands and in bookstores. The book can also be found on their website Magnolia Market.

Phavorites – Throwback Thursday/Aspenglow by John Denver

“Aspenglow was written about Aspen, which is a resort town in Colorado. They have a celebration every year called Winterskol where many skiers come down the mountain holding torches, thus the Aspen glow.” ~

I bought this first as a vinyl album, oh let’s see, probably many decades ago. Smile! I recently saw it in CD form in a Christmas Music Display. I’ve played it several times since then. A gorgeous song filled with beautiful words and sound effects.

Phavorites & Philm – McFarland & The Durrells in Corfu

One of my favorite films this year was McFarland. Released in 2015, the film is still available On Demand, Netflix, Amazon Prime, DVD, and other venues. Don’t miss this inspirational true story. Make sure and watch until the very last minute as the original McFarland Cross Country team makes a cameo appearance.

The Durrells in Corfu is another of my new favorites. Episode 1 of Season 1 premiered last Sunday evening at 8:00 on PBS, but you can find it online or On Demand also. I loved the ‘quirkiness’ of this sweet series and can’t wait for more episodes.

Phavorites – Poldark on PBS

Poldark Season 2 begins Sunday night on PBS. I watched the first season, and must admit, I am old enough to remember the original series broadcast on PBS in the 70’s. The first season was very well done, the characters compelling, the setting magnificent; I’m looking forward to enjoying Season 2.

Phavorites & Place – Morguefile and Mars

The planet Mars is close to earth in June of 2016. This week will provide you with a good opportunity for viewing the red planet. Nasa’s website provides good information on how to best view Mars. Nasa – Mars in Our Night Sky.

“In 2016, the planet Mars will appear brightest from May 18 to June 3.” ~ Nasa Website

Morguefile photograph courtesy of TomWildoner
Morguefile photograph courtesy of TomWildoner

Since I don’t have a photograph of Mars for this post, I searched one of my favorite royalty-free sites for a good example. I found this interesting atmospheric photograph, taken of Mars in 2014, on the Morguefile site courtesy of Tom Wildoner.

Pheathers & Phavorites – Barn Owl/Live Cam

I came upon this year’s nesting Barn Owl and realized it was time to repost the information for Cornell Bird Labs.

Take a look at the live-streamed “Bird Cams.” If you love birds you will love this site. To start the live cam click on the arrow. If it appears to be a still shot, look closely, you will see the soft movement of the owl’s breath. Thanks again to JaneM who shared this site with me.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology Bird Cam

Phavorites – November Reruns

This is my fifth year creating content for “Minding My P’s with Q.” Some good ideas and posts from past years are buried deep in the archives. I’ve unearthed a few November “phavorites” from 2011 to the present to share once again.

Sweet Potato Vine

Growing a Sweet Potato Vine is easy and a fun way to continue gardening indoors.

the stowaway

When you bring in your houseplants from the porch and yard be sure to check for Stowaways.

pumpkin cookies

Pumpkin Cookies, nutritious and delicious, are a perfect November snack.

pressed flower house

You can use Pressed Autumn Leaves to create structures within pressed flower cards.

milk carton cloche

A Milk Carton Cloche is an easy way to extend your growing season.


Amaryllis are available now as bulbs or potted plants for Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday cheer.

Paper Snowflakes on my windows are one of my favorite Christmas decorations. To have enough by December 1st, I will begin cutting at least five every day.

Last, but certainly not least, enjoy the beautiful “A Song of Thanksgiving” by U2.

Projects & Phavorites & Phlipping – Flea Market Flip/Vintage Formica Table

I love the how-to show Flea Market Flip. Recently, while walking through a local town, my husband and I passed a small red formica table. I loved it, and knew I had to have it; the price was right, only fifteen dollars. The table is about the size of a TV tray.  It is perfect for crafting, a computer table, eating, etc. Another advantage is the table is lightweight. I can carry it up and down flights of stairs, outside, and all over the house. Wherever it is needed the table goes.


I liked the aged look of the wood on the table, but the edges were a bit jagged and rough. Since I use the table for crafts, I decided yard sticks would be a quick and easy cover, useful, as well as decorative.


I measured the table, sawed, sanded and attached the yardsticks with Aleene’s Tacky Glue.

red table collage one jpg

I’m real pleased with the finished table.


Check out Flea Market Flip!


Phavorites & Phun – Throwback Thursday – Birthday Song

I had a good time visiting Birthday Jams. You enter in your birthday, and they tell you what song was #1 on the charts that week in the US. The drop down menu also allows you to check out what was #1 in the UK, Top Dance Tracks, and Alternative Hits. Number one on the US charts when I was born, way back in 1957, was Elvis Presley singing “Jailhouse Rock.” Give this fun site a try…I would love to hear in the comments section what was number one when you were born. Number One Song the Week You Were Born.

“Diana” sung by Paul Anka, was number one in the UK.

Plants & Phavorites – Lemon Grass

Summer is at an end. I thought it would be good idea throughout this week to take time for some reflections on the garden…successes and failures, and make note of what I want to plant again next year.


At the top of my list is Lemon Grass. I found this plant in my local Amish Market. I must have planted it in the perfect spot this year for it has thrived and grown to about a thirty inch height in the afternoon sunshine.

I found some terrific information on WebMD on the benefits of Lemon Grass.

“Lemongrass is a plant. The leaves and the oil are used to make medicine.

Lemongrass is used for treating digestive tract spasms, stomachache, high blood pressure, convulsions, pain, vomiting, cough, achy joints (rheumatism), fever, the common cold, and exhaustion. It is also used to kill germs and as a mild astringent.
Some people apply lemongrass and its essential oil directly to the skin for headache, stomachache, abdominal pain, and muscle pain.
By inhalation, the essential oil of lemongrass is used as aromatherapy for muscle pain.
In food and beverages, lemongrass is used as a flavoring. For example, lemongrass leaves are commonly used as “lemon” flavoring in herbal teas.
In manufacturing, lemongrass is used as a fragrance in soaps and cosmetics. Lemongrass is also used in making vitamin A and natural citral.

How does it work?
Lemongrass might help prevent the growth of some bacteria and yeast. Lemongrass also contains substances that are thought to relieve pain, reduce fever, stimulate the uterus and menstrual flow, and have antioxidant properties.” ~

There are some side effects and dangers when using Lemon Grass –
LEMON GRASS IS UNSAFE DURING PREGNANCY – It can start menstrual flow.
From my own experience I can caution you to be aware of the sharp edges when you gather the grass. I experienced a painful cut, pretty much like a deep paper cut while picking the grass to use in tea.

“Lemongrass is an aromatic storehouse of essential nutrients providing a wide array of health benefits. It is a source of essential vitamins such as vitamin A, B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin) B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), folate and vitamin C. It also provides essentil minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, copper, zinc and iron, which are required for the healthy functioning of the human body. It offers no harmful cholesterol or fats.” ~

I was astounded by all the benefits of this plant as I researched facts for this post. Lemon grass is widely available as an ingredient in herbal teas. Check out the labels in the tea section and drink more tea this winter!
Benefits of Lemon Grass

Before the grass falls victim to Autumn frosts, I plan on gathering and drying more of the grass to use throughout winter. I have had great results harvesting the grass, gently washing off any garden debris, cutting into 1/2 – 3/4 inch lengths, and drying for a day or two in the heat of my car.

Phavorites – Two Philms and One Series

I recently viewed two movies on DVD. Both were quiet, thoughtful, and completely satisfying. Cedar Cove, a series on the Hallmark Channel, has also been a nice respite this summer.

Far From the Madding Crowd, by Thomas Hardy, is a beautiful love story. I have never read the novel, but will remedy that situation after watching the movie based on the book. The film was beautiful; the story satisfying and believable.

I loved the ‘Age of Adaline”, a story of a young woman who lives her life without aging. The premise might be way out there, but the storyline makes it all believable. It was interesting to see Harrison Ford in a non-leading man role.

Cedar Cove is a television series on the Hallmark station based on the books of Debbie Macomber. I missed the first two seasons, but was able to purchase the first through Amazon at a great price. Andie McDowell is terrific as the heroine and small town judge.