A beautiful thing happened through the Sugar Pie  Girl-Talk Forum not too long ago…A sweet Sugar Pie Sistah named Angela from the Retro Farm Wife became dear friends with another “Sistah”  named Carissa from Stella’s Apron Strings.  Carissa had a brother, Jeff. Through a series of providential events, Angela and Jeff met, fell in love and were married this past December, just before Christmas! Had it not been for these Sugar Pie sisters meeting via the Forum, Angela and Jeff never would have met! Wow! I love how the Lord used this little spot on the World Wide Web to bring two hearts together!





Read Angela’s story in her own words:

“My life had taken an unexpected turn before I moved back home to live with my parents in Illinois at the end of August 2007-thus the name of my blog, The Unexpected Return Home (now named the Retro Farm Wife). As unexpected as the circumstances were, I was happy and relieved to be back home and thankful that I had my parents’ home to return to.


On April 27, 2009 I joined the forums on Aunt Ruthie’s Sugar Pie Farmhouse after following her blog for some time. I wasn’t a regular poster, but I did keep up with the site and posted every once in a while. A fellow poster, who knew the reason behind my return home, contacted me one day to point out that a fellow Sugar Pie “Sistah” had posted about going through a similar trial. I felt compelled to encourage her. In my reply, I shared a little of what I had gone through. When I replied to the lady’s post, Carissa from Stella’s Apron Strings blog saw my reply and noticed that my circumstance was much like one she had experienced in her own life, many years ago. She contacted me on January 16. The next day, she invited me to view her blog. I invited her to view mine as well and we began communicating via blog comments.






Carissa’s family

“During this time, I was in my final semester of college at age 29. I had a full plate and didn’t imagine that I’d keep up with her blog for too long because I was so busy. We really connected though. I loved her photography and the layout of her blog and the way she decorated her home. It was all totally my style. The love that she had for the Lord and her family flowed right out of my computer screen each time I visited her blog. It was refreshing to see a lady treasure her husband, children, and extended family so much. The more we communicated, the more I realized just how much we shared in common. I’d never had so much in common with anybody!


It wasn’t long after that, when her mother began leaving comments on my blog and emailing me as well. I was having a hard time dealing with my divorce, but the emails that her mother sent me were filled with encouragement. I longed to be a wife and mother more than anything else. The fact that Carissa had been down the same road as me and yet now had a loving husband and two wonderful children gave me hope. Carissa was living my dream.”





Angela soon found out that Carissa had a brother. A “very handsome” one at that! She saw of picture of “Uncle Jeffrey” holding his niece on Carissa’s blog and began to inquire about him and even felt led to pray for him. He became a topic of conversation when Angela, Carrissa and their mothers planned to drive half way to meet each other in person (they lived three hours away)…



“Carissa and I, along with our mothers, were planning on meeting each other at Starved Rock during my spring break. We’d never met any fellow bloggers in person before, but were very excited because we all had so much in common. I posted on my blog about our upcoming trip and shared this quote:

The most important trip you may take in life is meeting people halfway.

~Henry Boye

Was that appropriate or what? Of course I obviously had NO idea at the time! About two weeks before our meeting, I felt prompted to begin praying for this “Uncle Jeffrey.” I wasn’t sure why, but I knew that it wouldn’t hurt, so I mentioned him every time I prayed-that the Lord would ease his pain and perhaps give him, if it was His will, another opportunity to meet someone and have the family that he always longed for as well.”


Angela was delightfully surprised when she was given a bouquet of flowers sent to her from Carissa’s brother Jeff the day of their girls get-together…a sweet gesture of his interest in her. I’m sure joy-bells began ringing in her heart when she learned Jeff was thinking and inquiring about her! A thank you note via email to Jeff was the beginning of their love story:





“That began a daily flow of emails, which led to phone calls and a visit right off… April 2 to be exact. Our visits have been filled with LOTS of laughter; plenty of time spent with each other’s families; long hikes; fishing trips; endless games of Othello, Rummikub, Books and Runs; and him trying to teach me Pinochle (which I’m still not sure I’ll ever grasp!) I’ve grown to admire him, respect him, trust him, and love him dearly through this all. He exceeds anything I could have dreamed up myself. I’m still in shock that the Lord has brought this about because I fell oh-so-blessed!”



She said YES!
“I said “Yes” on Friday, October 1, 2010 to the man who is SO MUCH MORE than the man of my dreams.  I’ve never known his equal.
The Lord has been exceedingly wonderful toward me in all aspects of my life, but the fact that He has allowed me to meet such a man is too wonderful for me to grasp! I feel so honored. As if that weren’t enough, God has blessed me with THE BEST soon-to-be in-laws, one of which will be my new sister, the owner of Stella’s Apron Strings-a blog which many of you read and enjoy!!!”


Angela wrote about this photo: “Me, SO HAPPY, on my way home from Indiana after the engagement.

Thank you, Aunt Ruthie!”



From Jeff’s mom:


“A love story indeed… God’s love and grace dripping down over the two of you. Orchestrated beautifully. Far beyond our hopes and dreams… middle of the night prayers, answered… specific words cried out over many years, now glisten in the abundance of your love, Jeff’s love… God’s love. Tears turned to joy…. ashes to beauty. Mothers’ hearts sighing, lifting hands to heaven and thanking Jesus daily. He didn’t have to …but He did…He did wonderfully, awesomely, perfectly, bring the two of you together. What a love story. It’s called AMAZING GRACE.


When Carissa called and told me to check out your blog, I knew…she knew. :) We had prayed specifically and here you were. :) What fun we had watching it come together… and then at Starved Rock, sitting next to you, patting your hand… speaking of Jeff…(praying as I was and feeling the Holy Spirit’s prompting) there were tears in my eyes, in your eyes…we both knew (for you had been praying too). :) Now here we all are…


So happy for you, so happy for my son. Sometimes words cannot express such joy, it’s a matter of the heart. All of us are thrilled for you both. HOPE has a name, JESUS!

A love story with many pages to fill… and we’re all waiting with much anticipation as the next page is about to be written…


I remember Jeff saying to me, “Mom, I’m not going to go out and look for someone…God will bring that special woman to me if He so chooses to do so”, and HE DID!!


Psalm 126:3 The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad. “


The Wedding Day…


“Dear Aunt Ruthie,

I’m sending along some photos from our wedding day at Songbird Prairie Bed & Breakfast in Valparaiso, Indiana. The whole time was magical.  Our immediate families and some very close friends joined us in staying the night at the b and b before the wedding day.  We all came down in our pajamas and ate breakfast the morning of the wedding.  Then, everybody went back to their rooms to finish getting ready and the wedding guests began arriving.”


“The ceremony started about 12:30.  Just moments later, we were wed! “


“We took TONS of photos and then sat down to eat a multiple course meal that the chef had prepared for us.  People were so stuffed!  Then we served wedding cake.  We surprised the guests by having a mini individual cake made for each couple.  We dined in a sunroom with a lot of huge windows and bird feeders just outside of the windows.  It was definitely a bird watcher’s delight as we saw many different colorful breeds eating and flying among the trees.”



“People have not stopped talking about the day!  We love re-living it! Ultimately, I just wanted YOU to know how thankful I am that the Lord used you to bring us together.  I always wished to marry such a good Christian man and have a wonderful relationship where God is the center and the Lord has given me just that.  Jeff (my husband) is a very strong man but a very gentle man at the same time.  He loves the Lord and he loves me.  He always tries to put me first and shows concern for me no matter what the situation.  I feel so loved, secure, and cared for.  Every day is such a joy!

Happy New Year!!!

~Mrs. Angela W.
PS. “Welcome to all who are visiting from the forums at Sugar Pie Farmhouse! Aunt Ruthie…THANK YOU again and again! Pie is sweet, but love is sweeter!”
How amazing and romantic is this story!! It’s even sweeter to know that both families love the Lord and are so encouraging and supportive in this new family! Now that’s a Beautiful Thing!
I’m sure all of the Sugar Pie Sistas would join me in congratulating you Angela and Jeff, and pray a special blessing upon your marriage. May each day glow with sweet goodness as you walk in the light and love of the Lord! God bless you!
And speaking of Beautiful things…Do y’all know about this Magazine? Life Beautiful is jam-packed with yummy goodness for the homemaker! From gorgeous decorating ideas and recipes to simple things you can do with your family to create happy memories and celebrating the joys and beauty of each season. There are uplifting articles by Max Lucado, James Dobson, Janet Parshall, Dr. Gary Smalley, Joyce Meyer and others.
It’s published 4 times a year.Take a peek at this season’s issue…
Back issues are available here.
Planting Paperwhites Bulbs indoors is another Beautiful Thing! We still have a long stretch of winter ahead of us, and I’m itchin’ for a little-bit-o-spring! Most people plant these weeks before Christmas so they have some fresh greens and fragrant flowers to bring some cheer into their home after taking down all of their sparkly holiday trimmings. Why didn’t I think of that??  I’m gonna to do that next year by golly!
The great thing about planting Narcissus bulbs is they just need water! You can plant them in any container filled with  little rocks, sand, or potting mix and then just add water. In about 4 to 6 weeks you will have beautiful, fragrant paper-white flowers!
Take a look at this darling table with these gorgeous Paperwhite blooms! Photo: via 100 Layer Cake For more information on growing Paperwhites, check out this youtube video here.
Sugar Pies Valentines day is a Beautiful thing! It’s a wonderful time to show your loved ones how much they mean to you! Don’t wait until the day before February 14, I’ve been there, done that, and it’s too stressful!  Do yourself a favor and begin now to think of some special things you can do to bless the hearts of those you love.
How about making some adorable heart-shaped polka-dot cookies!
Heart Cookie Cutter Set

I shared on Facebook last week about my Heart Shaped Waffle Maker. After making some tummy-warming Chili, I whipped up a batch of Jiffy Cornbread mix. The fun part was, instead of using a pan or muffin tin for the cornbread, I poured the batter in my heart-shaped waffle iron. They turned out so cute and were easy to hold onto as we sat around the fire and gobbled them up along with the hot Chili! A perfect way to spend a wintry night by the way! I’ve also made Blueberry Muffin waffles this way too. They take just minutes to make!  It’s the little things we do that make life fun! This waffle maker beeps when it’s ready to pour the batter and beeps again when the waffle is done. How easy is that? I like easy!


Another Beautiful Thing  that I LOVE is this book Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey!

But the BEST BEAUTIFUL THING that’s happened to our family is…


Kimmy and Dusty are expecting their first baby!!! This will be my second grandbaby! Woo hooo!! As most of you know my son Dusty is the genius designer of my Web Site and my adorable daughter-in-law is amazing in her own right. I love the drawing that Dusty did on Kimmy’s t-shirt! This was their Baby announcement! How cute is that!


They are going to be fabulous parents and this sweet baby, who is going to be born in July, is going to be well loved!!

It’s good to take a look around at all of the Beautiful Things that God has blessed us with. A thankful heart is a happy heart.

Be thankful and happy!

May the good Lord bless you and keep you real good!

Hugs, Y’all!

Aunt Ruthie

PS. Sugar Pie Farmhouse is on Facebook! Come join us!!

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