Thursday, December 14, 2006

So, I've got Wilson Pickett playing "Mustang Sally" on the radio, and shortbread cookies in the oven. My house smells like buttery cookies rolled in coconut - and I love it!
Derek's taken the kids to the 50 cent theater, and I have some space and time to get my Christmas gifts made. Sweeeeeet.

Our lives are about to be in a period of transition again... in only a matter of weeks. And, I'm not sure how I feel about it. Not sure I feel anything about it. Not sure if that's good or bad. Either I'm out of touch with reality, or I have greater faith than I thought...

The holidays are upon us, and I really wanted to be ready for it this time. Really wanted it to be special for my kids. And, I'm putting sentimental gifts together for the rest of the 25 people that will be there in the afternoon. (Not including some of my favourite people at church.)

So, I've made some fanastic photo gifts for my mom. Hinged framed gifts, a nightlight, and have a small memory book in the works. I hope she'll love it. We're just not made of dough, and we've lived apart from my family for soooo many years... Usually our Christmases are so small. But, not this year. I had to do something, but I had to something inexpensive. And, being me, it had to be meaningful.

So, shortbread thumbprint cookies rolled in coconut and topped with raspberry jelly are piling up in crinkly Christmas bags and topped with ribbon. Those are for the teen boys.

I'm making photo bracelets on ribbon for the girls.

Custom made and personalized photo memory books are in the works for the couples.

Candles have already been made and personalized. Those are for the older couples.

Anyway, I'm up to my eyeballs in paper, cookies and ideas.

Gotta get back at it.


Friday, December 08, 2006

Hm... must have been in a funk when I wrote my last post.

I started yesterday in a pretty good mood. It was hubby's day off. That's always a good start.
I turned on Christmas music after breakfast and danced with two of my three kids in the living room. Hopefully Derek hasn't installed some hidden cameras. My kids get their rhythm from their daddy... hehe.

I created gifts for my family for Christmas. I found some old pictures of mom and dad (back in the '50's) and made a hinge-framed picture set. Worked on some candles, beadwork and then spent the rest of the afternoon making Martha Washingtons and peanut butter balls. Yummy!

I was wiped by the end of the day. And, sooooo sugared out.

Derek brought home a load of already chopped wood and started a roaring fire for me. I finished decorating the mantle and settled down for a hot cup of chai.

It was a great day off.

I work today. Ugh. But, after work, I'm going to start where I left off.

Something about the previous post made me wonder... Do we (Christians) lead people to Christ or to church? Huge difference.

BTW, on the church's answering machine this morning was a message left for Jesus Christ, this fella wants Jesus to call him back. He left his name and number, I think my hubby will give him a call.


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Can I get real for a minute?

(Sensitive viewers consider yourself warned. This post may be spiritually explicit. Not suitable for spiritually immature viewers.)

Why is it so hard to convince folks in the church of Christ that God wants a personal relationship with him? Hm? What's up with that?

The balking, the cringing, the whispering... the dead silence in my class was enough to shut down the most experienced of teachers.

I didn't teach apostasy, blasphemy... so what's the deal?

Or is this news to us? That God actually desires more from us than a punch in and punch out card that's perfectly filled...


What kind of church have I associated myself with that cringes at the thought of having an intimate, delight filled relationship with it's creator? What is so foreign about that? You gotta tell me that wasn't meat... puleeeze tell me that was milk and they just got it down the wrong pipe! They were choking on it! How on earth have they made it this far in their spiritual warfare without a personal relationship with their redeemer! What have they been doing for the PAST TEN YEARS?!!! Ugh. I'm so thoroughly frustrated.

Mind you... it wasn't the whole class. But teaching it was akin to swimming upstream in molasses.

Naturally, I have one heckler. A whisperer. She's above it all. This is all beneath her. She "doesn't need this" she tells me every class. And, yet she shows up every week. I suppose God has her there to keep me humble? I silently prayed for her right in the middle of class. We'll see what happens with that.

I can't even begin to explain to you how difficult it is to teach a class... a bible class... when you know you are right in the middle of a spiritual assault. NO... a loooong spiritual battle. I feel so incredibly weak... vulnerable... unqualified... I have come a long way from leaning on my own understanding and strength... but during these latest weeks my personal strength has run dry and I am strictly surviving on spiritual fumes. Certainly aware that I am not the best qualified for the job. And yet... no one else will step up. Hopefully when I am done, this will change.

I am baffled by this realization that wanting a closeness with God makes me a liberal nut to my obviously "conservative" sisters... Mm Mm. I never considered myself liberal or conservative... and I don't know what this make me now.... or makes them.

I'll forge on as long as God requires me to...

Signing out unapologetically...

You know, when you're 12 you think you're going to be like this forever. Just as you are. Your body will never wear out. You already know everything there is to know. All that's left to look forward to is marriage and babies.
Then you finish middle school and Jr. High, and move on to highschool. And, it's there that you just know you will never change. You know so much more than you did when you were 12, and now, you've got the marraige thing pretty much lined up with the boy-of-the-month.
Then you graduate. And, you're in limbo-land. Too old to be hanging out with highschoolers, and too young to be hanging out with the young adults. Most of which have started their degrees and talk in code: "I got my AA, only to switch majors and go for a BS. I'll start taking 300 classes early, but only if I can change my GPA..."
So, you jump into the college thing. And, that's when you KNOW that you will never change. You're living in a dorm, 3 meals a day, and you take the classes you want to take. At least, you HOPE you never change. The guys are hot here.
Then your college money runs out, and you're living in town, hoping to get back into college again.
So, you get your own place. You fanaggle over the rent with the landlord, and begin to decorate with other people's leftovers. And, though it's kinda weird, you never really thought much of working a full-time job and holding down your own fort. Paying rent and utilities is the most grown up thing you do all month. Every month. But, you still hit the movies and hang out at Subway with your boyfriend... and life is pretty much perfect. No plans to move forward, but wouldn't go back to highschool for nothin'!
Then you start talking marriage. A breeze, right? It'll be the same as now, except one of us will move in with the other... You'll never change. You'll have the endless energy you have now, only a few more responsibilities when the baby comes.... I mean, who doesn't love babies, right? You've been looking forward to this day since you were 12. You've had it planned out for nearly a decade!
Then the baby comes. No one told you they have a different clock than you. (Funny how I didn't mind being up at 3am with my fiancee, but it's different with an infant!) Suddenly, you realize everything has changed. YOU are no longer the center of the universe. And, you slowly realize... even at 3am... you're okay with that. You'd do anything to provide and protect this little crying creature. And, motherhood isn't anything like you had imagined when you were 12. It's so much harder and so much better!
Then you're infant turns 1 and is into everything. Turns 2 and says "no!", and gets it's first paddling. She's 3 and asks "whyyyy?". She's four and gets bossy. She's 6 and toothless. She's eight and has drama with her little friends. She's 10 and wants her ears peirced. She's 12 and she has it all figured out. She'll never change.
So, you try to tell her that she will... and she looks at you blankly and asks if she can start wearing make-up.
My daughter turns 12 next year... and she's got it all figured out.