Tuesday, December 2, 2014

December Daily | Day One {We Welcomed Advent Slowly}

The season of Advent has arrived. For the last three years I have documented our celebration of the waiting for Christmas by doing December Daily. If you are unfamiliar with what Ali Edwards' December Daily Project is, read THIS.

Here is today's story:

My love pulled all the Christmas decorations out of the attic space. When I heard the metal pins in the ladder lock into place I felt ready to welcome Advent. However, we welcomed Advent slowly.  All day the tubs and boxes remained stacked, at the end of the hall.

Instead I sent my love to Lowe's to pick up a $15 bundle of 48 inch sticks to start a project I have been dreaming about doing. Into the evening we constructed simple giant stars. Adjusting. Gluing. Stapling with Daddy's help. Then repeating, each of the girls getting their own turn using the staple gun, with Daddy.

Until we had four giant stars. Step one, done. They still need to be lit and hung.

Instead of wrapping with lights and hanging, we had hot chocolate in tiny tea cups, with mini marshmallows and mint chocolate chips with popcorn for dinner.

And it was good.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Slow Down You Move Too Fast

Slow down.

I went to Family Ministry Conversations last week. I left reminded of a few things, one of which was to slow down, so that ministry could happen, not just programs. Honestly, that's hard for me to do. My to do list is always playing in my head.

I'm reading a book, The Leader's Journey. It's talking about slowing down so that you can hear the Holy Spirit and experience personal transformation. It seems to be giving steps how to make that happen. And I am wrestling through, like I do with books and someone else's ideas, authenticating the new ideas as I go. I can be brutal in my scrutiny. There seems to be some rich truths in this read, but I am still testing some of the ideas.

The blog post If You are Rushing, Something is Wrong happened across my Facebook newsfeed yesterday. And it was incredible and made me take a deep breath and whisper "me too."

My kids randomly break into song, singing Simon and Garfunkel's "Feeling Groovy" thanks to an awesome public school music teacher. And when I do, both my mother and my mother-in-law's voices chime in, in my head, because when the kids start singing it, so do they.

Recently my pastor quoted C.S. Lewis' Screwtapes. Looking for the quote I stumbled on Screwtape Writes on Church Volunteers. I had to shift in my chair several times as I read.

Slow down.

My pastor, when teaching, reminds us that when something is repeated in God's Word we need to pay attention, God doesn't want us to miss what He is saying.

When I am moving more slowly I think before I speak (James 1:19).
When I am moving more slowly I look at people in the face.
When I am moving more slowly I remember what's most important.
When I am moving more slowly I hear His still quiet voice more clearly.

As we move into advent, I want to slow down and move more slowly.

Lord, help me to slow down.


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Right Now I am Thankful For | Week Four

Right now I have loved linking up over at AngelaStrand.com, where she's hosting a thankful link party. Document your gratitude and then go link up too.

Right now I am thankful for...

A husband who is competent with a chainsaw and is able to safely fell our own trees.

Two girls who aren't embarrassed, but proud when all three of us put on black boots.

A little girl who loves to help with whatever project I'm working on.

My Silhouette Cameo.

Getting mistaken for a homeschooling momma at the local library.

A local farmer who raised beef and the local butcher that cut and wrapped the side of beef that filled up our freezer.

Good friends for my kids to play with on a day off from school.


Friday, November 14, 2014

Right Now I Am Thankful For | Week Three

I didn't post yesterday. I didn't have photos. I still don't. (I read somewhere once you needed to have a photo with every post and every since then I have a hard time posting without one. Words don't seem like enough.) But I do have lots and lots of thankful thoughts, so I am posting now, anyway. I really want to link up over at Angela Strand's blog. You can too. Go Here.

Right now I am thankful for...

A momma who prays with me on the phone when I tell her my feelings hurt. Then she comes running over so she can hug me and be with me.

Right now I am thankful for...

A God who extends lots of grace and mercy, heaping it on my head and covering over a multitude of sins and shortcomings and mess ups.

Right now I am thankful for...

Three precious children who seem to hug mommy tighter when I need it because I feel like a failure.

Right now I am thankful for...

Redeeming love that can make relationships beautiful, not because of perfect people, but because of imperfect people who God chooses to redeem anyway.

Right now I am thankful for...

The cleansing feeling of a cold hard fall wind that whips around you with so much speed and ferocity that you are reminded of your very small place in the world and the corresponding greatness that God loves me and would have sent His son to die, just for me.

Right now I am thankful for...

Music. Oh the sweet balm of music written to heal and inspire.

Right now I am thankful for...

The truth that His mercies are new every morning and that so many shadows are gone in morning light.

Right now I am thankful.

What about you?


Friday, November 7, 2014

Right Now I Am Thankful | Week Two

Right now I am thankful, so I am linking up over at Angela's blog.

Little girls that want their fingers and toes done with Mommy.

Property. Husband who has walked the property and already taken down any trees that could fall on the house and do damage. So when the winds come, I am not afraid.

There freedom right now to spend a morning taking off to shop and try on clothes without kids, even when I don't get much.

A boy who still loves Legos and plays for hours with them.

Flannel sheets. Oh how I love flannel sheets living in the Pacific Northwest.