About Me

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I love to laugh and love with my family, read, exercise, cook and sew, all the while giving thanks to God for his immeasureable love and faithfulness to me.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Service with a smile

One area where I feel that J and I have kinda fallen down on, is in the area of service.  It was something that we both felt was important for our family to participate in, but it was never really high on our list to make happen.  Other things usually got in the way.

Then this year, I decided to make it a priority.  It started because the Noodle got involved with American Heritage Girls.  If you're not familiar with the organization, it is similar to Girls Scouts but with more of a Christian focus.  Giving back in the way of service is a major focus.  Love that!

We belong to a pretty big church.  It is easy to get involved but it is also easy to get overwhelmed and just go with the flow and just take, take, take.  It comes down to being intentional.  For both us and the girls.
The holidays provide a bunch of ways to give back.  One option that both AHG and our church participate in, is Operation Christmas Child.  The Noodle and I went to a packing party and had a blast!  We spent two hours and between the two of us, packed 25 boxes.  It wasn't even a dent in what was done, but we did our part.  The coolest part of the whole event?  Each of the boxes that was packed was prayed over--for the child who would receive it, for the items that would go inside, for the hands that were filling it.  Awesome!  Both Mei Mei and the Noodle also packed boxes themselves and so enjoyed picking out just the items that they thought their recipient would love.
Another opportunity came up through a mission that our church supports called Care for AIDS.  The focus?  Caring for the parents who have HIV/AIDS so that they can care for their children.  This is done through providing medicine, food, skills, community and faith.  300+ members of our church got together to package up 50,000 (yes, you read that right!) meals to send over to Kenya to help these families.
The missional community that we're a part of worked together and had the best time!  Afterwards, when we were eating together, we cooked up a bag/meal (of leftovers) and each sampled some of it. One bag is a serving size for 6 people (rice/lentils/vegetables/salt) and actually tasted pretty good.  It provided for some great discussions about how fortunate we are and all of the things we take for granted.
I know they are just a few things, but hopefully we'll keep plugging away.  Every little bit helps, and we've been given so much, we can be generous with our time and our service. "Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble.  Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon."--Isaiah 58:10.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Christmas, Christmas time is here........

Yes, I've got the Chipmunk's song playing away in my head...thankfully it is not on the Pandora station or I'd really be doomed!

So today we're doing it.  Bring on the Christmas decorations!  Boom.
I'm feeling a bit late to the game, since it seems that quite a few people are now decorating BEFORE Thanksgiving.  Do you?!  I know it was late this year, and all, but still.  I feel that the turkey deserves his day to shine.  Perhaps that will change as the years go by?  Never say never, I guess!!

It pretty much rained non-stop all day.  Perfect to stay inside and get our Christmas on.  The girls were troopers--cleaning, carrying, helping organize and setting up.  The two of them basically put up the tree by themselves.  J was just there acting as a guide--ha!  My bet is that by next year, they will have it totally under control!
It is always fun to stop and read the Christmas books.  Especially Elf on the Shelf...Cupcake could be coming back at any time!!!  Stay tuned.
The Little People nativity set is always a hit too.  Setting it up.  Re-arranging it.  Acting out the Christmas story.  Pressing the angel on top of the manager so that 'Away in a Manger' plays--ad nauseam--majorly annoying your sister.  Good times.
By dinnertime everyone was pooped and I hardly wanted to think about what to prepare.  So I let my fingers do the walking and Chinese food it was.  And if you know my crew, you know that no one complained one bit.
We ended the night in my most favorite way.  Champagne on the couch with my favorite guy at one end and the lights twinkling in the background.
It's the most beautiful time of the year!

Stuffed...Thanksgiving re-cap

Well.  We got our turkey on (most of us, anyway) and gobbled until we literally wobbled!  Ugh--too.much.food!!

We started our Thanksgiving morning much the same as other Americans, I'm sure.  Pouring through the circulars.  Not because we hit the Black Friday sales but because neither of the girls had made their Christmas lists for Santa.  This was the perfect place to start.
Ah, the peace and quiet with a side of chaos, while J and I finished reading the paper.
Then it was time to head out to visit Grandma and Grandpa.  No holiday feast is complete with out the required hors d'oeuvres.  And a photo bomb.  In our family, it is the buffalo chicken wing dip--always, and I threw in a brie with cranberries and pistachios into the mix for an added choice.  Yum!
There were lots of silly antics with the cousins.
A bit of parade watching.
Superhero memory.  Lots of superhero memory.
And tons of snuggles, cuddles, kisses and hugs.  It is Thanksgiving, after all, and what better way to let those around you know how thankful you are for them, than by smothering them in love?!
#thankful #blessed
The feast.  Delicious.  Nap-inducing (which quite a few us did partake in, I must admit).
After we finally dragged ourselves out of our chairs, we took a walk on the beach.  The wind was from the South, so there was lots of sand and it was crazy warm for this time of year.
This guy.  His favorite place is by the water.  Love him so much.  God knew what He was doing when He brought us together.
And just like that, it was time to head for home.  We had such a lovely Thanksgiving--family, love, laughter, food, shelter.  Such simple things but such BIG things too.  I don't ever want to take them for granted.

This is what followed us home.  Beautiful!!  Can you see how the Lake is just illuminated by the moon's light?  It was that bright.  Just another visible, tangible reminder that God is so good.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!