54-40 or Fight, A Real Battle

No matter the amount of planning, if one doesn’t have the skills or equipment to accomplish a quilt challenge, there is a way to participate and enjoy a finished project. Above is my take on 54-40 Fight; believe me I fought every inch of this challenge.

The challenge was to use elements from a traditional block designed in a past time of our history. The block is called the 54-40 or Flight.

Here is a quote, “It’s about land acquisition, and in the 1840s many suggested the northern edge of Oregon should be drawn at the 54°40′ north line of latitude. And they were willing to go to war to make that happen. “Fifty-four Forty or Fight!” After much negotiation (but no war), eventually, the 49th parallel instead become the US-Canada border, and the phrase lives on only in history books and quilt blocks.”

This is the block. We were to use the pattern or historical event to capture the spirit of the block.
My snowman fabric represented the Canadian boarder, the Stars and Stripes the US and the shiny fabric the snows of the north.

Thank you Persimon Dreams

Check out https://kimlapacek.com/2023/01/14-3-54-40-or-fight-challenge-3-of-project-quilting-season-14.html

Monday: Snow

Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool.

Isaiah 1:18

As many leave for warmer climates, I continue to stroll snow covered woodland paths. I rather enjoy the beauty of a winter walk with its crisp air. A bit of sunshine is a welcomed friend on a chilly January day. I savor the occasional day when the sun glistens on freshly fallen snow.

This year, I for the first time since I was a child, don’t mind being tucked under a blanket of snow. I’m set aside from the problems of the world. Not hiding, mind your, but on a temporary retreat of sorts. It becomes a time to ponder the craziness of other season’s festivities.

Snow also brings a fresh look to God’s creation in the great outdoors. It defines woodsy branches, enhances kettled land and becomes a canvas to the most gorgeous sunsets. Snow is a part of the variety we have with the seasons in Wisconsin.

Of course, there are elements snow brings which are unwelcome: rough roads, systematic shoveling and slippery sidewalks. At the same time it refreshes the earth, cleanses the landscape and reminds me of spiritual truths.

Sitting on a stiff bench, studying the white backdrop of my yard bundled from head to toe, I am reminded that Jesus laid down His life for us. All the dirty little sins we have been carrying around were nailed on the cross where Jesus died. We too can be as white as fresh fallen snow.

Happy wintry Monday. It’s a new week to serve the Lord!


She is not afraid of snow for her household, For all her household is clothed with scarlet.

Proverbs 31:21

Snowflakes collect like cups on a shelf
stacking high and lofty in jumbled mess;
as I wonder, is the cup half empty or less.

Snow plows move and groan as a bear
awaken from his short seasonal slumber;
in great despair, dizzily his body lumbers

Snow drifts and dances as a ballerina
on stage drawing the attention of all;
the audience suddenly groans at her fall.

Snow shovels scrape and etch, as an artist
labors over a fine masterpiece which flows; there’s artistry in the language of the snows.

Monday’s: Fellowship

For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Matthew 18:20

I had the pleasure of organizing a ladies event this past weekend, at my church. It was a time of fellowship, spent in enjoying warm soups and smiles. What a special afternoon to brighten a rather gloomy January weekend.

There was nothing fancy to the event. All attending shared food and testimonies of things God was doing in their lives. Huddled in groups of 3 or 4 I heard abundant laughter. A genuine feeling of loved filled the room.

Somewhere in the middle of the event, I received a phone call. Prayer was needed for a young family member facing impossible health issues. I was deflated. In the midst of joy, the enemy was attempting to steal it away. Then someone prayed for the situation; and another prayer need, still another as the laughter in the room turned towards peaceful prayer. 

No matter how gloomy the situation, remember there is always prayer!

Folly Flows

He sends out His word and melts them;
He causes His wind to blow, and the waters flow.

Psalm 147:18

Trees speak, “Drip, drip, drip, drip, drip;
singing a sad lament of distant spring.
Droning tones, empty from any truth.

The woods are a stir, dazzled, confused;
as January marches in long hesitation.
Small foliage pops up, shades of jealousy
in dollops of thin, icy snow now shrinking.

Pines stand stately, straight, still awaiting
their turn for the next season’s celebration.
Still I hear a drip, drip, drip as I march
down muddy, slippery path in dazed fright.

The sky is gray; horizon filled with fog.
Crows are alive: calling, calling, calling
speaking truth, “Winter’s not finished.”
Cawing ever so loudly in empty, dense air.

“Winter has not finished its damage here.”
Yet, the small green foliage peak through hibernation drinking in the melting slush
wondering when it surely be their turn.

Strolling slowly, on muddy path, wondering
if the trees know when the next snow
comes; snow so thick, even April couldn’t
thaw it, I wonder with each careful step.

Each pace I trod mud mingles with slush treacherous as I steady my self with a staff.
Yet, I’m out here in the mix of slush and mud
wondering what oddity this day may bring.

Trees speak, “Drip, drip, drip, drip, drip;
singing a sad lament of distant spring.
Droning tones, empty from any truth.

Great Books

Some spiritual based fiction worth your time.

By Broken Birch Bay

“Set in the early twentieth century, single mother, Petra Livingston, and her young son, Jefferson, have come home to Broken Birch Bay, Minnesota braving the town gossips over her sordid past.”

Author Jenny has masterpiece another amazing story. You never can go wrong with her stories, that captivate your attention with heartfelt stories that are entwined with love, family unity, family bond, mystery, suspense and a full group of strong characters. -Lizeth

The Traveling Prayer Shawl

“Cami Madison’s grandmother died, leaving her with a task she must complete or all the inheritance goes to charity. Plus her boss handed her the ad campaign that will win her the coveted vice presidency opening.”

I don’t have words to describe how good this book was. It will touch your heart and soul. It is full of emotions and God’s love and grace. This book is a *must read* for anybody that likes Christian fiction. I wish I could give it more than 5 stars! -Ann

Biltmore Girl

“New York City, 1968. Elka Hansen, a former teen cover girl, is done with modeling. Now she’s a hostess for the Palm Court restaurant in the beautiful Biltmore Hotel. As she sees it, Elka’s other job is to watch out for her younger sister, Colleen, an idealistic but reckless college student at Barnard.”

What a wonderfully engaging story! Characters you want to know, a plot line that keeps you turning pages, and descriptions of the setting that make you feel like you’re there! Bravo! -Elizabeth

Monday: Doulos – Slave

Do you not know not know that … you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price.

I Corinthians 6:19-20

The book, “The Gospel According to Jesus” by John MacArthur, has been around for some time. This past week, I had the opportunity to turn its pages as the sun glistened through my window.

Having been a warmer week, the pond struggled with whether to stay stiff or fluid. Nature has a way of tetter-tottering back and forth with its state of being in short periods of time. Rain or snow, hot or cold, and balmy or blustery can all happen in a day’s time. As I partook of the information in “The Gospel According to Jesus” I realize the Greek word “doulos” has something in common with Wisconsin weather.

You see, I needed to grapple with an idea so many people have had to decide for themselves as to it’s meaning in the Word of God. Doulos, if translated properly, actually means “slave” not servant. Because of the negative understanding of the word slave through centuries and of its misuse by man, most Bible transitions prefer to place the word servant into the spot slave actually should be used.

When I read this statement, “A servant gives service to someone, but a slave belongs to someone,” by Murray Harris, a light went on for me. And it shown almost as bright as the sunshine pouring into my window on that cold winter day. Perhaps, I decided, I needed to tussle with whether daily I am just in service to God (going about my duties to family or ministry) or am I dutifully bonded as a willing slave to serve God. Am I just giving of myself or do I truly belong to God who paid my price of sin, which had kept me from Him, by the blood of His Son Jesus Christ?

I realize there is a thin line between rain, sleet and snow depending on the temperature. At any one point, precipitation can control the weather and our daily lives. Is it so, with the words servant or slave? I think that it may an issue we each need to deal with as we follow a risen Savior.

Witness in the Sky

His seed shall endure forever, And his throne as the sun before Me; It shall be established forever like the moon, Even like the faithful witness in the sky.

Psalm 89:36-37

Crystal moon on bed of twilight sky,
trees stretch tall then groan a call;
to iridescent moon so sober and shy.
From prickly branch owls hoot why;
next to luminance orb I am so small.
Stillness comes and cease the cry.
All is nigh, all is nigh as time goes by.
Yet, moon is a witness in ageless sky.

Monday: On Frozen Pond

A year ago this pond was dry. Most of the wild life found new homes. After a year with plentiful rain, it is full to the brim. It’s amazing what a good year of rain can accomplish.

During winter months, small troops of deer stop to visit as they gracefully skate across the stiff water looking for a mouthful of grass. A solitary fox strolls along the bushy edge looking for his lunch or a place to make a den. For the most part, the pond lies still as the winter allows brittle grass to tinkle and glitter on sunny days.

The pond is ever changing. Come March elegant cranes will dabble in fresh cracks of water. There they’ll find spring peepers endlessly calling for a mate. One morning, several pairs of geese will attempt to claim pond’s rights for nesting. As the big birds argue, small ducks will have already laid their eggs. Only thin layers of ice will remain, as the March thaw begins.

I wonder if our spiritual life faces change. Is it stiff and frozen or flourishing as a spring pond. As I see strings of new life grow in my marshy pond, my hope is to see new life in my spiritual walk. My prayer is that you too are flourishing in your relationship with God.