This morning as I was laying in bed, very ambitious thoughts were going through my head...this time it would have been better to have those 'sugar plums' dancing in my head. Being so far behind in my blogging posts that I am almost ahead of myself has weighed on me so I said I will go in and change my header and re-vamp some of my sidebars...oops, then there would be no post PLUS, if things went the way they did last time I attempted to re-do my blog, you would see a big mess. Instead here is a humble post, with apologies for not having/taking time to even post comments. BUT I ALWAYS remember to pray for all of you, so even if a 'catastophe' strikes, like dear Jerelene having emergency surgery, please be comforted by knowing that I am praying!
Here's a cute little snowman with a sweet little wand...now if he was magical, I would have him wave his wand on you and all your Christmas baking, cards, presents, shopping, cleaning etc. would be done....and you would have no money or health problems, you would be at a spa getting an two hour long massage, you would step on the scale and it would say "You lovely thing, thanks for stepping on me. I barely felt it and you seem to be losing so much weight and you don't even need to. Please hurry back, I just love you and you love me too." (when I fantasize things look REALLY good)....
Since taking pictures and downloading and then finding them all takes so much time, I went hunting for some online again AND I found the exact outside nativity that we had three years ago! It looked this good when we first put it out and then it rained...lots of rain....this is NOT really an outside nativity...it folded where it should not fold and bent and separated and then fell down...very sad...sadder still that it is still in our garage awaiting an impossible repair!.....
Still, incredibly blessed I found yet another nativity that I have but mine is in color not black and white...maybe this one is so old it was made before color nativities (just joking here). Last night I also just finished setting this one up, so how much more incredible is that? The pieces like to fall down as they are a light wood and very thin (so that they can be stored back in that nativity 'stable' you see behind the figures)...
Now, for those wondering what I have been doing and so that you do not think I have just been frittering my time away, here are some of the things going on around here...
Shopping...grocery, gift, Christmas tree children gifts (had to go to the mall for one requested gift), gift wrapping, putting out tons of nativities...redoing nativities knocked down or over by cats, dogs and people, searching for nativities and decorations, putting up tree, more shopping, visiting, putting up the lighted nativity above the door which is waaayy up there (just about nose bleed high),trying to get through writing and addressing and stamping over 50 Christmas cards, bill paying (what a challenge this was the other day, but that is another story), decorating house, baking and baking and baking...so far we have made homemade ginger bread, almond crescents, almond cookies, bird's nest cookies, molasses cookies, chocolate highlander bars (and we still have about six more recipes to make before the people start coming over to view the nativities)and a BIG mess in the kitchen each time that requires four or five maids to clean up each time but being short on maids I have had to put an apron on Michael and pretend (he does look cute in his tights and little French maid outfit...more fantasizing here), mailing packages and standing in the post office line for long enough to get to know all other 57 people on a first name basis (it did feel that way), going to meetings for the Consolation group, prayer group, painting and now our church mission...what WAS our pastor thinking doing it THIS week with all the chaos???, a lector's meeting for a poetry recital...what WAS this leader thinking doing this during this busy time?...hmmm, maybe no one is thinking and maybe I shouldn't be thinking either!
This post was partially done many days ago, so here is an exerpt from the Internet for you which teaches us that the message we get may be WAY more powerful than the message we expect....
"Children are able to communicate a message better than any adult. The story below will touch your heart. May your Christmas have Joy, Peace and Love in big overflowing portions.
Each December, I vowed to make Christmas a calm and peaceful experience.
I had cut back on nonessential obligations - extensive card writing, endless baking, decorating, and even overspending. Yet still, I found myself exhausted, unable to appreciate the precious family moments, and of course, the true meaning of Christmas.
My son, Nicholas, was in kindergarten that year. It was an exciting season for a six year old. For weeks, he'd been memorizing songs for his school's "Winter Pageant." I didn't have the heart to tell him I'd be working the night of the production.
Unwilling to miss his shining moment, I spoke with his teacher. She assured me there'd be a dress rehearsal the morning of the presentation. All parents unable to attend that evening were welcome to come then. Fortunately, Nicholas seemed happy with the compromise.
So, the morning of the dress rehearsal, I filed in 10 minutes early, found a spot on the cafeteria floor and sat down. Around the room, I saw several other parents quietly scampering to their seats. As I waited, the students were led into the room. Each class, accompanied by their teacher, sat cross-legged on the floor. Then, each group, one by one, rose to perform their song. Because the public school system had long stopped referring to the holiday as "Christmas", I didn't expect anything other than fun, commercial entertainment--songs of reindeer, Santa Claus, snowflakes and good cheer. So, when my son's class rose to sing, "Christmas Love", I was slightly taken aback by its bold title.
Nicholas was aglow, as were all of his classmates, adorned in fuzzy mittens, red sweaters, and bright snowcaps upon their heads.
Those in the front row--center stage--held up large letters, one by one, to spell out the title of the song.
As the class would sing "C is for Christmas", a child would hold up the letter "C". Then, "H is for Happy", and on and on, until each child holding up his portion had presented the complete message, "Christmas Love".
The performance was going smoothly, until suddenly, we noticed her--a small, quiet girl in the front row holding the letter "M" upside down totally unaware her letter "M" appeared as a "W".
The audience of 1st through 6th graders snickered at this little one's mistake. But she had no idea they were laughing at her, so she stood tall, proudly holding her "W".
Although many teachers tried to shush the children, the laughter continued until the last letter was raised, and we all saw it together.
A hush came over the audience and eyes began to widen. In that instant, we understood--the reason we were there, why we celebrated the holiday in the first place, why even in the chaos, there was a purpose for our festivities.
For when the last letter was held high, the message read loud and clear: CHRIST WAS LOVE."
And, I believe AND know, He still is and always will be.
Now time for some laughs....
Now time for some laughs....
~Other Uses For Fruitcakes ~
Paint a few white and place them outside on the grass
So people won't park on your lawn.
Use it as building material.
(This is actually what the Ancient Egyptians used to build the Great Pyramids.)
Keep one under your pillow for home defense.
Send one to the junk mail company with a note
Asking them to take you off their list.
It's colorful, use it as a Yule Log.
Carve the Presidents' faces in it and
submit as a science or art project.
Give one to your boss and tell him it's a life preserver.
Use it as a base for flower arrangements.
Donate to the local airport for use as airliner wheel blocks.
Grind a few up and give it back to your in-laws in a bag marked "lawn fertilizer."
For a community project, sink a few in the ocean
and build an artificial reef.
Tie one to each foot when you walk through
deep snow to keep your feet dry.
Into the Church
The hardware store humanely trapped the squirrels and set them free outside town. But three days later, the squirrels climbed back in.
Only the church came up with an effective solution. They baptized the squirrels and made them members. Now they see them only on Christmas and Easter.
~~~Heavenly Father, thank You for the blessing of being able to re-focus on the important things like reaching out to others and taking time for thankful prayers.