515. If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales. ~Albert Einstein

Child of the pure, unclouded brow
And dreaming eyes of wonder!
Though time be fleet and I and thou
Are half a life asunder,
Thy loving smile will surely hail
The love-gift of a fairy tale.
~Lewis Carroll

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The Toadstool

THERE ‘s a thing that grows by the fainting flower,
And springs in the shade of the lady’s bower;
The lily shrinks, and the rose turns pale,
When they feel its breath in the summer gale,
And the tulip curls its leaves in pride,
And the blue-eyed violet starts aside;
But the lily may flaunt, and the tulip stare,
For what does the honest toadstool care?
She does not glow in a painted vest,
And she never blooms on the maiden’s breast;
But she comes, as the saintly sisters do,
In a modest suit of a Quaker hue.
And, when the stars in the evening skies
Are weeping dew from their gentle eyes,
The toad comes out from his hermit cell,
The tale of his faithful love to tell.

~Oliver Wendell Holmes

They send forth their children as a flock: their little ones dance about. ~Job 21:11   ✝

**Today is my daughter’s birthday, and although she’s a grown woman with children of her own, I always loved reading her fairy tales when she was young.

239. Blow, blow, thou Winter wind… ~William Shakespeare

How can those who do not garden,
who have no lot in the great fraternity of those
who watch the changing year
as it affects the earth and its growth,
how can they keep warm their hearts in winter?
~Francis King

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Blustery was the north wind that came up last night.  As it ran groaning around the corners of the house, it rattled the windows and doors.  But there were no snow flurries nor threats of icy assaults, no misery other than the cold sting in the sound of creaking tree limbs, in the sound of the rushing gale.  As the Sabbath dawned, blue were the skies and bright was the light from above, but the relentless, chilling winds kept on and in check the thermometer.  The endless gusts and leafy flutterings throughout the day intimated over and over again that tonight will neither be inviting nor without loss.  To lower the risks inside faucets will be left to drip, cabinet doors will be opened in front of the pipes below, and thermostats will be turned up higher than usual.  So I will not feel the bite of the chilling wind nor will my heart for, oddly enough, I know where lay outside what will keep it warm. Though I know not how they survive, the larkspur seedlings in the photo will make it through this long, cold night as well as others like it.  I may not be able to fathom all that God built into Creation, but I can and do praise Him for all His goodness.

From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from scattering winds.  ~Job 37:9  ✝