Christmas Fun!

Fun and Family, what a great combination.  Christmas day was such a nice time of relaxing and enjoying time with my extended family.  Life gets so crazy, but times like this are the glue that hold us together.

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The gifts are under the tree, just waiting for the kids to open them.  We started a tradition many years ago with opening gifts on Christmas morning.  We didn’t want the kids to engage in a fanatical rip fest of opening presents.  So The Inventor goes first each year and picks a gift to GIVE to someone else in the family.  That person opens the gift, and picks someone to GIVE the next gift to.  This way the emphasis is on giving more.  It has worked out so nicely, I really enjoy watching everyone get so excited to give someone a gift.

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Candy for the Inventor and a fruitcake (that actually looked delicious) for Grandpa.

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The Inventor making a fruit salad for the family, and SportTman eating it as she makes it…..typical boy! 🙂

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Grammy and her grandson

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My niece with her new princess tea set, and does she ever make some delicious tea!

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The  ham was such a ham and insisted on having his picture taken………..ok, ok, I know that was bad.  But the ham was delicious, it’s from the Honey Baked Ham Co.

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Here is my whole family…..sometimes it’s hard to believe that we are old enough to be at the big parent/adult table!  No longer sitting at the kid’s table, burping and blowing milk out through our noses! 🙂

And no holiday seems complete in our house, if one of the kids isn’t doing some kind of sport! So here is SportTman at his holiday basketball tournament.  He had 2 games on the 26th and 2 on the 27th!

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O Come……..

I have been so busy shopping, baking, going to basketball games, attending music programs etc that I have not been blogging much…..so sorry, I know there is much to catch up on.

But something has been on my mind all week since church last week……this song.

O come, all ye faithful,
Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem;
Come and behold him,
Born the King of angels;
O come, let us adore him,
O come, let us adore him,
O Come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord.


Baking toffee, coffee spice bars, peanut butter/cornflake squares, mint oreos dipped in chocolate, sugar cookies, lots of baking, mixing fresh ingredients, wrapping presents while the cookies are in the oven…busy….busy….busy. The laundry pile is always growing…..baking, cooking….oh my

O come, all ye faithful,
Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem;

Shopping, so much to buy, trying to get the best deals, being creative, oh and I must get my Christmas cards finished and in the mail.  I don’t want them to arrive AFTER Christmas!  Sales, bargins, surprises for the kids, finding the elusive stocking stuffers….much to do.

Come and behold him,
Born the King of angels;

SportTman’s basketball games too,  fun activities for my students, crafts to get ready for school, oh more shopping, stopping at the outlet to check out a going out of business sale, volunteering at our local rescue mission with the Inventor and her friends, more basketball, SportTman’s birthday fun.

O come, let us adore him,
O come, let us adore him,
O Come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord!

.…O come, let us adore Him……O come, let us adore Him.  Yes, those 6 simple words are truly ALL that really matters. They have been ringing and singing in my mind all week.  And heck, even singing aloud at times, and that isn’t always real pretty, but that’s ok. 🙂

Amidst this busy time of year, I have been constantly reminded this week to simply,  Come and Adore Him!


Yolanda Adams – Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful

Fourteen

He is entertaining, a goof, annoying to his sister at times, a typical boy who leaves his stuff laying around the house, his room isn’t the neatest, and his clothes are rarely put away in his drawers.  He is a boy who has a passion for sports.  He is also currently raising our weekly food bill by eating constantly, he stands tall at 6 feet, and is wears a size 13 shoe.  As an 8th grader, he plays for the 9th grade school basketball team, he also plays for a competitive tournament baseball team.

But I also see a leader beginning to emerge, he helps lead a bible study at his public school middle school, he isn’t real captivated by cell phones and the current popular clothes, he is content to be himself.   He enjoys going to youth group, and is not embarrassed that his mom is also his Sunday School teacher.  He enjoys playing drums for his Jr. High youth group praise team.  I am starting see glimpses of a Godly man forming.

Yes, this young man, my son SportTman turns 14  today.  He is a blessing to our family, and I am thankful that I can watch God form him into the man He wants to use for His glory.

Happy Birthday SportTman!

And yes, that is a tie he happily wore to school yesterday for an away basketball game……yes he is growing up!

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Technology Stress

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I had “TS”lately. Our router at home hasn’t been working, and then my laptop from school has some major “issues” So I have been with out a computer for 2 days. Right now I have a “loaner” which is working fine and I am happy to be back as a 40-something tech mom! However, all this TSS ( no, not Toxic Shock Syndrome) Technology Stress Syndrome got me thinking how much I depend on technology!

With out my computer I couldn’t access my iCalendar, I didn’t know what I was supposed to do on Thurs. I actually had to THINK and not rely on my nifty iCal. Imagine that…..thinking….at my age! 🙂

All this TS also got me thinking………….I did not grow up with iPods, cell phones, Facebook, My Space, laptop computers, Cordless phones, answering machines, Bluetooth, a Blackberry, PlayStations, Wii, etc…… With out technology what did I do?

Well……..I actually learned a lot of things growing up with out all of this tech stuff.

I learned important life lessons like;

I learned that I had to wait for things. I couldn’t talk to friends wherever and whenever on a cell phone. I also had to wait and go to a record store to buy music. I couldn’t just download it instantaneously from the internet.

I learned a great love for the outdoors. I would spend hours outside playing, being in the house was boring and there was nothing to do there. There were no video games to keep me inside. There was a great world to conquer outside!

I learned to communicate, and problem solve with friends face to face, not by texting or sending them an instant message.

I learned how to be content. I would sit a watch the same TV show for an hour, I would sit through the commercials, and not switch the channels constantly. I was happy to watch The Brady Bunch, and just sit on a couch and not have to multi-task, or text a friend. I sat, calm and content.

I know these may seem like small things, but many of these exact lessons have helped to guide me through the trials of life. And even thou I count myself as a tech geek……there are times when I wonder if all of this is helping society and the next generation? What do you think?

Thankful Thursday…..

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We lost our internet service for 2 days, so I am a bit behind in the blogging department. Ugh! But what better way to jump in then to list all that I am thankful for! For more Thankful Thursday click on the button.

#1 – I took a personal day on Tues. to do some Christmas shopping! I can’t begin to tell you how fun, and helpful that was. 🙂 I am very thankful for that day.

#2 – I am working on our Christmas letter and cards that arrived this week from Snapfish. I just love getting Christmas cards from friends. It’s always fun to hear from old friends. 🙂

#3 – I really enjoy hanging out by the Christmas tree and listening to Christmas music, and just relaxing by the tree. There is something about that just calms my heart and spirit.

#4- I am thankful for this cool, and very delicious carmel popcorn recipe. And yes it is SO simple and FUN. It involves using a brown, paper grocery bag!

#5- Here is an interesting one………I am thankful for the migraine I got yesterday! I am so glad it went from bad, to worse to BETTER after I took the migraine medicine. I couldn’t teach my Girls Alive class on Wed., but I have two great helpers this year. So I am thankful they so willingly could fill in for me at the last minute.

#6 – The Inventor had her annual cookie baking party last Sat. Oh what fun, and memorable that tradition has become. They baked 352 cookies….and yes they counted.

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It still stands!

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I have been driving past this lovely, and beloved creche each morning on my way to school.  Each morning as I sit in traffic I ponder it’s significance.  I think how our town still proudly gathers together to erect a nativity in the middle of town each year.   I ponder what it represents in a world that is trying the take the Christ out of Christmas.  I admire it’s simple beauty. It’s the same simple, and humble beauty that sent Jesus to this earth on a lowly night in Bethlehem over 2,000 years ago.
I am also reminded of the “battle” that took place to keep this creche in town.  The story of God’s handiwork in that creche is such a great story I just wanted to share it with you.  It really warms my heart each year when I see Jesus, Joseph and Mary right smack in the middle of our town.  So allow me to indulge you a bit in the history of this creche.
Back in 1994 several residents asked the ACLU to step in and see if this nativity was even allowed to be displayed in town.  The lawyers first demanded the nativity be taken down. They complained such a “religious” figure had no place in any town.  In an effort to combat the ACLU, many in our town gathered together one COLD December night right in the middle of the town square to pray, we even had recording artist Wayne Watson come and sing a few Christmas songs. It was a heartwarming event, yet we were all unsure as to what would become of the beloved creche. After the lawyers researched for weeks the ownership of the little tract of land in the center of town that the nativity sits on……..they found out that the local Moravian Church that originally founded the town in the mid 1700s’ still owns the square!! Since it stands on private property the nativity can still be displayed each year at Christmas.  Amazing isn’t it?
I always admire the the simple beauty of this magnificent symbol. It’s the same simple, and humble beauty that sent Jesus to this earth on a lowly night in Bethlehem over 2,000 years ago. That is why our family celebrates Christmas! Thank you God that a precious nativity can still stand in my town and be a strong, visual reminder to all that pass by that your birth and sacrifice is the true reason we celebrate Christmas.

Simple Things

Sometimes it’s just the simple things in life that bring joy.  We went to get our canoe this past weekend at a local lake. And I had a rare Martha Stewart moment, while there I spotted a bunch of pine cones under several huge, old, pine trees.  I picked up several pine cones, and lots of free greenery and made this basket.

It’s a simple thing, but I am enjoying it this Christmas season!

For more Wordless Wednesday, click here and here!

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