Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas 2011

Christmas was quite the celebration around here!  See for yourself...
click to enlarge

We had early risers, the Christmas story in bed, stockings, Christmas coffee, gifts, a yummy breakfast and then we headed to church.  We've decided that going to church on Christmas morning is awesome and we should do it every year!  What better way to celebrate our Savior's birth then gathering with His church to worship Him?!!  We were fortunate to be able to share a Christmas dinner with a full table of family and friends.  A wonderful day full of His goodness and grace that fill our lives!

Friday, December 23, 2011

December in pictures

So I don't forget it, the big and small...
 my three favorites...Christmas tree hunting
 the perfect Blue Spruce made its way home with us
 all dressed up and heading to "The Nutcracker"
 family tradition- Lebanon Christmas Parade
 best seat in the house at the parade
 Christmas crafting- torn paper trees
 progressive dinner with our home group
 good friends, sweet girls and good food
 Christmas program at church
 my two little cheeseballs
and again with my favorite peeps
 700 toys bagged up and ready to go
 what consumed much of my December- Toys for Tots
 cookie helpers-Mati was so proud of "his" apron
 little dough snitcher
 my big helper
 showing off their efforts
 the artists' work!
early gifts-hooded towels that became capes that became Mary and Joseph costumes

It has been the merriest, and definitely the busiest, of Decembers!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas in the making

Life has been full and good and busy the last week and there's no end in sight! I know this time of year is busy for everyone and we're no exception. It is the busyness that threatens to overwhelm me and make me miss what this season is all about: Our King who came, who is coming again. Ann Voskamp's words always encourage and restore me and that's never been more true then in some posts she wrote last week. Here's a few excerpts...

"Still unfolding it: the only place to be fully alive is right here.

There are dishes in the sink and balls of yarn on the floor and boots at the back door.

I profane this moment when I don’t stay in it.

Be all here: and be holy. Because the Presence of I AM always fills the present moment.

When I am mindful of this moment, the mind fills with God and the heart fills with peace, and joy-thanks fills the prayers, and isn’t the only way God can come to us is through the door of this moment?"

And this thought that I'm constantly coming back to, using it as a gauge for how I'm spending my time...

"Whenever Christmas begins to burden, it’s a sign that I've taken on something of the world and not of Christ. Any weight in Christmas has to be of this world."

There is joy in the serving and giving and reading and crafting and wrapping and choosing and when it becomes heavy to me, I need to step back. There has been lots of reevaluating and putting aside of some things that "we always do" and I"m okay with that. I want Him to be the focus, not our traditions or stuff or experiences. I want-no need- to be in the moment and allow Him to be there with me. I want it all to point to Him and He's helping clear my eyes to what that really looks like. It might not look that different on the outside, but the view from my heart has shifted.

And I love what I see.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Christmas Projects: Noel Sign

Raise your hand if you love pinterest?  Dumb question, right?  I've been so inspired by projects I've seen on there and this is my latest creation.  The original idea is from Pottery Barn and their version is made from forged metal, so this is not the same at all.  But that's the beauty of it all, one idea spawns another and we create something beautiful to us with our own stamp on it.

I followed the directions found here, but found that hot glue didn't hold and Cale ended up screwing the letters together.  Much sturdier!  MDF letters from Michael's painted in umber and crimson and they really look like stained wood.  My house does not have good lighting at all so these pictures stink, but you get the idea!  I wanted to show what it looks like on the wall but since its gray and dreary my already dark living room is really dark!  I love how it turned out and it cost me about $12 and an hour of time.  A great, easy project with big payout- these look great in my living room.  That's my kind of crafting!