Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Blessing of Peaceful Mind

As I continue on my attitude of gratitude, I have to apologize for not posting the last few days. My desire to share thankfulness is still going strong and when things got crazy this week I had great foundation already in my head to look back on to give me a sense of tranquility.

My daughter took a really bad fall last night while trying to give her brother back a stuffed animal before bed. I was down the hall and out of sight of her when I heard a big noise followed by a scream for dad and mom. Alan being closer to her than I was got to her first and shouted for a towel as I came down the hall.

A bit confused I went back to the kitchen for a towel. Upon returning within seconds of Libby's tumble quite a puddle of blood was on our floor. Not quite sure of where it was all coming from I began to ask questions. Before I got any real answers Alan sent me back for a few more towels and our son, Aaron went for ice.

After gathering up supplies I headed back to my Lib. By the time I returned, Alan had discovered the blood was all from her nose and she had begun calming down. Helping her up, we headed to the kitchen and sat her down. While we waited and tended to Lib's nose minute after minute passed and I started to feel a bit panicky. Aaron and I had said a quick prayer after getting Lib in a chair but I felt an uneasiness welling up inside of me.

Praying again quietly to myself, the anxiety left me as I began remembering she is not only my child but my sister in Christ. Peacefully I was reminded of my sweet daughter that at even the early age of 10 has a great love for the Lord. I thought of how amazed I felt when the first thing she asked for a Christmas gift was a nativity. Her desire never wavered, steadfast she repeated her desire to all that asked her what she wanted.

I have always struggled with showing my appreciation for the blessings around me. I have learned an invaluable lesson this holiday season by the examples of others. So many took a challenge to express their gratitude for a couple of weeks leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. I felt remorse that I didn't share any of blessings at that time and felt compelled to share them this Christmas Season.

Sharing how God has blessed me, changed my focus to have more of a positive outlook and gave me reassurance to have peace during a difficult situation. I am so grateful for having a daughter who has begun her own relationship with the Savior and that my lovable girl who now has a growing collection because she received an abundance of differing nativities.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Jesus is the Reason

Focusing on Jesus for the Season and being thankful for all I have been blessed with I came across this funny picture of Santa and literally it made me laugh out.

Is he late, just hurrying to the mall? I thought it was funny. Put a smile on my face when I have struggled for a couple of days.

I am thankful that my Lord has given me a sense of humor to laugh at things of this world while I am still serving and loving Him. Hope this picture makes you laugh like it did for me. God Bless.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Kids Health

Dropping the kids off for practice of their Christmas Program, they seemed energetic and ready to run through lines and sing all the songs they will perform in the upcoming week. I gladly took my turn in the nursery to snuggle babies during the sermon.

About a half an hour later Libby's teacher burst in saying Lib had fainted and they needed me. With a replacement on the way to help the other nursery workers I bolted out to check on my daughter. She was still on the ground and not all together with it. Libby's teacher brought her some juice and as she drank it became more aware of her surroundings.

We left church early and went to the urgent care on our way home. The doctor gave a couple of things that could be wrong with Lib and that we would know more in the next few days. Well here we are two days later to say Lib has strep and other than having to miss school today things are back to normal.

I am so thankful that this Christmas Season God has given us our health. I know how blessed I am in that . Thank you, Lord.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Candy

Homemade Christmas Candy is such a yummy gift to receive this time year. Neighbors, co-workers, friends drop off packages trimmed with ribbon to your house or desk. Recipes are exchanged and thoughts of making our own special gifts arise in our heads.

I enjoy making candy for others and have found a few great recipes over the years. I made candy with my mom as a girl and then we bundled up and delivered them to all of our neighbors. When I married into a family with the same traditions, I started making candy for our friends to share during the holidays.

I gained more recipes from my mother in law, Claudia, and began making some of my husband's favorites. Rice Krispie rolls are Alan's most treasured. The recipe is not hard but my mother in law had added a twist of her own to jazz them up and be a little more fancy.

The first year we were married Claudia explained how to make the rolls but promised to send extra and to teach me when our lives weren't quite so hectic. Holiday after holiday passed as we grew as a family. I knew I would eventually get to her house to learn the secret of the round Rice Krispie Rolls.

I took time for granted. My husband and his mother had a falling out and we didn't see them at all the next few Christmas'. When it began all I knew to do was to pray and so I started to pray for renewal for our family. Christmas after Christmas I prayed and no change came. Not holding out much hope for rekindling after such an extended absence I prayed less although a yearning for their relationship still tugged at my heart.

Shockingly after almost three full years, a phone call came and restoration came between Alan and Claudia. Joyfully I spent a day with her and my father in law, Arlo, this week making candy. I now know the secret to rolling the candy, and made two batches with a friend the next day at my own home.

I am thankful this Christmas Season for rebirth of relationships, between mother and son. Reminding me of the birth we celebrate on Christmas Day. Let me share her recipe with you.

Rice Krispie Rolls

3/4 C sugar
3/4 C Karo syrup
3/4 C peanut butter
5 C Rice Krispies
4 oz. chocolate chips

Measure out Rice Krispies and put in a large heat proof bowl or pan, set aside. Add sugar and syrup to 2 quart pan. Stir til sugar is dissolved and bring to a boil. Immediately remove from heat and add peanut butter. Pour over Rice Krispies and stir til blended quickly carefully spread on cookie sheet(10x15)while hot with buttered hands or spoon, cool slightly. While still warm spread melted chocolate chips leaving about an inch from each edge, cool slightly. Cut into quarters on the 10 inch side of pan, roll each piece mashing back into place if it separates. Continue to roll and compress until quarter width and the slice about 3/8 sections. Repeat with other sections. ENJOY! If you do not want to roll spread the chocolate to the edge and cut into small uniform pieces.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Tunes

Sleep in Heavenly Peace, Joy to the World, It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas, great lyrics that brings smiles to a face and voices out of those that don't normally sing.

I just love Christmas music. Old, new they all help me be happy. I think it might be that we get to enjoy the Season of our Lord with the rest of the world. Yes there the other classics like Frosty and Rudolph but I enjoy hearing Silent Night while grocery shopping for the twenty seven people headed to my house.

OK twenty seven is an exaggeration but don't we feel like that as we are preparing at least I do. My sweet Jesus has the answer for me when I am at my wits end.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28,29 NIV

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.Galatians 6:9,10

And of course it doesn't hurt while we are in the midst of preparing to crank up those tunes and sing along to the carols.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Story - Shepherds

While turning to Luke 2 to follow the sermon on Sunday my interest was perked as our pastor skipped the first few verses of the chapter. Luke 2 is the Christmas Story what was he thinking skipping past the part God played through the Holy Family.

I have heard the Christmas Story for as many holiday seasons as I can remember. I have always put emphasis on the Holy Family. My faith has had boosts as I fell in love with an obedient woman, a kind husband and a son's sacrifice on my behalf.

But he was going to talk about the shepherds. I remembered the shepherds, I have them pictured in my mind as sitting on the hillside watching their flock when an angel instructing them to visit the King of Kings lying in a manger nearby. Soon after a heavenly host, a thousand angels, came down praising "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." The shepherds were obedient, did see Jesus, did share the news to others and then went back to the stable and praised Him.

I think the sheer volume of all the angels has made me scan right over top of the shepherds.

Shepherds were nomads making sure their flocks had food and water. They lived with their flocks and didn't have much of a chance to go into towns for religous services. They were alone most of the time with dumb, smelly sheep. Homeless, loners, who were too busy to go to church, how amazing is the Lord to add in the part that reminds us we are all children of God and he loves us and sent His Son for us.

Thank you Lord, today I am grateful for the Shepherds and the rest of your Christmas Story. And to a pastor who is in tune to listen to the whole story.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Continuing on the journey of thankfulness now through the New Year. I am grateful for Christmas movies.

Today our family watched Polar Express. I am glad to know that for the most part I can sit down with most Christmas movies and watch them as a family. It is not always the case when it comes to pick a movie for a lazy Saturday afternoon.

A friend of ours calls parenting "living the G rated life!" Keeping a careful watch on what our kids see and hear is a part of parenting and I am thankful to have more choices at this time of year.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Thankfulness

The Christmas decorations are up at our house at least on the inside. My husband made the comment that it looked as if a Christmas tornado blew through here. I am usually stressed at this time of year. My husband works in retail and is busier than ever.

I was so inspired by all of the joy that thankfulness brought during Thanksgiving this year that I am going to be more grateful for those things around me between now and Christmas and I have a feeling that it may just work so well that I carry on til the new year.

Today I am grateful that my house smells of Christmas. Not the smell of cookies baking but of the candles that are placed about with the fun votives I have been given over the years. Makes me think of the spices that the wise men brought to my Savior after He was born.

Thank you Lord Jesus for being the reason of this season and showing your love to all mankind through your sacrifice.