Thursday, December 31, 2009

Long live new...

I like blogs that make me think...recently I read this...that had me struggling a bit. While I understand, and fully believe, the verse above...I worry that "long live new, death to better" isn't quite right. True, we become new...we can't jump back into our old fleshly sin...but being like Christ means "working out our faith in fear and trembling"...and that means...working to be better! Indeed, long live the new...but keep HIS DAILY SUFFICIENT improve and become more like Christ, our Savior.

That being said, I adapted the questions from this meme...and worked on some goals for 2010. As I mentioned's good to define things...
resolution-a decision to do something or to behave in a certain manner; "he always wrote down his New Year's resolutions". I want to behave more like Christ. That is the overall goal.

I struggled with whether or not to post these resolution thoughts...because while it does provide accountability of sorts, it also opens the door for criticism of the most intimate areas of the heart. I love HATE it when you share a personal goal with someone only to have them turn on you and say, "Weren't you going to do better at X?" Now, not everyone...some people in my life are entitled, by marriage or friendship, to keep me accountable. I'm talking about the few who maybe overhear you, and set no personal goals of their own (but should) and yet feel free to snap it to ya! *big breath* all that aside...I'm going to stick it all out there for your viewing enjoyment.

1. What skill do you most want to learn this year?
I'd like to become a better learning to talk less. I want to learn how to focus my attention on the person speaking...without interrupting or thinking in my head of what I'd like to say next.

2. What is one skill you already have that you’d like to improve this year?
I'm very friendly and outgoing but would like to improve my friendships and friendliness by (see #1) being a better listener and thinking before I speak or give advice.

3. Name your reading goals for 2010. (adapted from original meme)
Entire Bible in full year...with schedule guide.

All missionary/christian biographies in the church library.

All Agatha Christie mysteries in library.

4. In what specific area do you most want to encourage your spouse? What are some ways you can do this?
I want him to feel respected and appreciated as the leader of our home. I need to be doing things for him without expecting a reward (verbal or otherwise), by not scripting for him amid decisions, by not treating him in any way as I would our children, by building him up in our children's eyes, by making home a haven to return to after work...

5. Think of one of your major life goals. What will you do this year to make you one step closer to reaching that goal?
To become debt free. I will refocus my thinking and discover new ways to be frugal and be contented with what I already have.

6-7. Adapted...What are some ways to encourage your children as they grow this year?

My children are young and coming up with their strengths and weaknesses seemed a bit over the top. At two and four they need to be learning to respect and obey authority...not just mine but GOD'S. I want to encourage them to be loving and kind to each other too. I want to teach them to love God with all their little hearts...and lead them to understand their need of a Savior.

8. What is one of your strengths? Think of some specific ways you can exercise it this year.
I'm very organized but I'd like to do better at keeping lists (checklists) and keeping schedules throughout the that things don't
sneak up on me. I'd also like to figure out a way to be flexible at the same time...and not let a strength become a weakness.

9. What is one of your weaknesses? Brainstorm some ideas on how you can overcome this deficiency.
I'm very quick to anger. I'm going to try counting to 20 and humming. I don't want to make excuses...but repent quickly and ask forgiveness sooner.

10. Think of an important relationship aside from your spouse and children. How will you nurture that relationship this year?
Send notes of encouragement. Faithfully pray for them.

11. Name a few ways your physical health could be improved.
Take vitamins everyday. Drink more water. Run, do crunches...get rid of the baby paunch. All physical goals aimed at gaining more energy and a stronger immune system.

12. Name a few ways your family’s financial health could be improved.
See #5

13. In what way do you want to draw closer to God?
I want to become content with His plan...with Him being in control. I want to become His kind of beautiful, doing the good works He's laid out for me to do. I want to listen to His voice...and be a woman who prays for the eternal, not the physical.

14. What is one area of home management that frustrates you? Think of some specific ways you could improve your attitude about it.
The things I can't complete easily alone. I need to become more independent and learn to schedule actual dates for completion.

15. Have you ever created a family mission statement with your spouse? If so, why not do one for this year?
? Good idea...

16. Name one specific thing you could do with your spouse this year that will deepen your intimacy.
Be a real stickler on date nights EVERY MONTH. Schedule sex...I always thought that was ridiculous...but people with toddlers and busy jobs get tired and busy ya'll.

17. What is something that is continually undone in your life? What will you do to fully complete it this year?
Keeping personal goals such as those above. I'm hoping accountability and a sense of my own unworthiness will help. Remembering that only God can make changes in me...and refine me to make me more like His Son.

18. In what ways will you be involved with your local community?
Er, a better question is Will you learn to say no this year?...because I'm a great one for getting too much on my plate. I think I'll work on focusing on my family...thanks.

19. What is one thing you’d like to accomplish by your birthday this year?
All Christmas presents completed and ready to go.

20. Think of three words you’d like to describe your 2010.
Peaceful, Contented, Respectful

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

WordFILLED Wednesday: Time in view of Eternity...

I've been dong a lot of thinking. The season suggests it...planning resolutions...organizing another year...hashing over the past...

He has made EVERYTHING beautiful in HIS TIME...

...God and His ways are unfathomable...and that's something to be in awe of...and to be grateful for...that He's in charge...and I am not!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Blogging Along 2009

I will join the many out there who choose to reflect on the past year in bloggoland...I find it interesting that taking the first blog of each month throughout the year actually gives an interesting collage of my posts...varied and otherwise...

Thanks for your patience...

Memory Monday...Review Cop Out

Memory Monday...Finally...Isaiah 41:9-10

Wordless Wednesday of the past...
Foodie Friday...

Winners of the Golden Scoop...

Didja miss me? I'm back....

Saturday...ONE WORD!

Tube Tuesday: Bless the Lord!

Caffeinated Randomness: Septober...argh!

Evangelistic Opportunity...not just a fairy tale!

Eating...full of Jesus?

I'm working on a resolutions post...and reading through the past year has been the melancholy and the excitement it stirs up inside me! It's been a wonderful and blessed year...for sure!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

New Family, yeah...

Yes, we now have four little pets in our house. Using our Christmas money we bought four Anolis (AH-NO-LEES) and all their accoutrements. We got two males and two females...named...are you ready...Guacamole, Can-ole, Frijole, and Holy Mole!
The most excitement came the day they arrived...when I discovered that the lid we had for the tank had holes that were a bit too big...meaning...they could come right out and go up to the lamp. I figure they saw it as the greater light and had been thinking about it...then all of the sudden...ZOOP up they came.

Only one truly escaped...the others I bumped back into the tank. I got saran wrap and enclosed the lid...called Loverbrains and left a hilarious message...something like, "AHHHH, they're getting out. Come home NOW!!!! AHHHH!!! *little emmy screaming in the background, Duh leezards are out...ahhhh!*" I also called our friends who have these...where we got this crazy idea for hypoallergenic pets! They had unexpected Christmas cheer...and were grateful for a good laugh! I did capture the escapee in the deli container they came in...and she was quite unhappy for the rest of the day. Good grief!! Merry Christmas!!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday: Living Word...

God's Word is certainly living and can apply to many (or every) area of our lives at the same time. God's just awesome like that!! I had been studying the verse above this regard to respecting husbands...and then I read my Dad's post, Can Grouchy Be Godly?...and found it applied to me and this Christmas time very aptly! My prayer is that you would also be challenged to live humbly, kindhearted, brotherly harmony so that you may receive the blessings.

Join WFW over where Susan is Forever His!

TT: He's Born...

I received a comment in Chinese from a fully Chinese blog...that obviously I couldn't comprehend. Although it is quite possible that it was spam, the fact that it is possible that someone has a question about my singing shepherds today...their comment held several question marks...I just can't leave it alone. I didn't post the comment in case it is spam or viral...but I want to add some scripture to this post...for everyone to read...about what the shepherds said to everyone...

Luke 2 (NASB)
1 Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. 2 This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, 5 in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. 6 While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; 11 for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 “This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
15 When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, “Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger. 17 When they had seen this, they made known the statement which had been told them about this Child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at the things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Grow old along with me...

...the best is yet to be.

Merry Christmas and Happy Anniversary to my sweet Loverbrains!

Since Barbara and her beloved share an anniversary with us...I'm going to take her lead and list something wonderful for each of our years together. I have it much easier than her...she had to come up with 30....hehehe! Here it goes...

1. He's a patient and humble man...with me, with others, with our kids. In that way, he leads me by treat others as I should. I need to spend more time watching his approach. I feel this attitude and way of dealing with others and issues comes from his intense study of God's Word...and his desire to be a man after God's own heart.

2. He's a wonderful Father. Turns out he's the better disciplinarian between us...because he can remain emotionless...which comes in really handy when a two year old does the same awful thing repeatedly. I learn a lot from him in the remaining calm and FIRM...I get wimpy and feel sorry for them...but he is wise and knows we must teach them to obey.

3. He's a great griller, garbage taker outer, and lawn mower! All jobs that I don't like or want to do...he does gladly and well! Yeah!!! He even fills my bird feeders...and has joined in my birder activities. We spotted a red-headed woodpecker together just yesterday!

4. He's warm blooded. I mean that figuratively and literally. I'm always cold and he's nice to let me put my cold hands and feet on him and snuggle me close. He also makes me feel beautiful and desired after two babies and body changes!

5. He's got a hilarious, dry sense of humor. Usually, it's based off nerdy math or political topics...but watching the news with him can give me a lift...depending on what he says in response to the screen! He helps me smile at the end of the day!!

6. He talks things through with me. No matter how frustrated or angry...he continues to talk and work with me on our difficult issues. Yup, we have them...and haven't figured it all out yet. Maybe when I've reached 30 years...Barbara?? *Smile*

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Awww! A whole stable of cute animals...

Don't you just love her expression..."come on Mom, are we done yet or what?"
Loverbrains was Joseph...and he had his lines memorized and did a fabulous job. This is the only picture I could get...because I was sitting in the choir loft during his actual speaking part!

For the adorable videos...focused for the Grandparent viewership (meaning I zoomed in on my kid)...go to my other blog...MomE & Loving It!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Saturday Snowman Cartoons...

My grandparents sent me these...and I just had to pass them on! Enjoy!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Caffeinated Randomness: You asked for it...

I was born into a very musical family. I often say I'm an eclectic music lover...meaning I love all music genres...reggae, jazz, veggie, classical...I do struggle with hard rock and rap...So, my Christmas selection is wild and wacky...a little like me!!
This is my favorite song to dance about with the's just silly!!
This gets me groovin''s really funny to watch me sing this one...hehehe! Don't worry you won't be given this opportunity.
Well, do ya...huh, ya have Christmas JOY down in your soul!??

I like this little Veggie Tales song...the whole singing Christmas tree thing cracks me up!

This is a fun Cuban version of Oh Come Emmanuel...
This is a beautiful choral version of the same song...Still, this year I think it's my favorite...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Our Greatest Need...

If our greatest need had been information,
God would have sent us an educator.

If our greatest need had been technology,

God would have sent us a scientist.

If our greatest need had been money,

God would have sent us an economist.

If our greatest need had been pleasure,

God would have sent us an entertainer.

But our greatest need was forgiveness,

so God sent us a Savior.

~Max Lucado

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tube Tuesday: Mary Did You Know!

"Mary Did You Know"

[Originally written by Mark Lowry and Buddy Greene]

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has come to make you new?
This Child that you delivered will soon deliver you.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy will calm the storm with His hand?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little Baby you kissed the face of God?

Mary did you know.. Ooo Ooo Ooo

The blind will see.
The deaf will hear.
The dead will live again.
The lame will leap.
The dumb will speak
The praises of The Lamb.

Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
that your Baby Boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know
that your Baby Boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
The sleeping Child you're holding is the Great, I Am.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Wise Men...revisited...

Last year, I posted some thoughts on the Bethlehem Star...and I still think I'm odd in my belief that something can be supernatural and scientific. I guess that comes from believing in the Creator and His marvelous abilities! I can see that it would be easy to spend too much time on the star worked, what the star was, etc. but sometimes speculation is just plain cool. God is greater than anything discovered or it had to be neat, right? God used the entire universe to make His son known. He still does...

Yesterday, our pastor brought up some interesting thoughts to my mind. As you recall...last year I wondered about the odd gifts. You remember the dynamic, frankincense, and myrrh. I realized yesterday that I'd been dwelling on the physical objects themselves...and not the worship in giving.

Acts 17:25, "nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things;"...indeed, it would be a great dishonor to give our God and King something as if we saw him as having need!

Duet. 10:17, ""For the LORD your God is the God of gods and the Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God who does not show partiality nor take a bribe."'s definitely not a bribe for their kingdoms blessings...

Instead, the wise men had traveled really far...bowed down...and gave gifts...not for reward...but because they longed to please God and worship Him alone! Giving to God something you could use says, "God, YOU are my desire...not these physical things." I don't know about you...but that sure touches my heart during this time of year.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Caffeinated Randomness: If you've never seen must!!!

My FAVORITE Christmas movie of all time is White Christmas. I love love love it! Every year I say I'm going to buy it...but I don't...cuz it's on TV...and then I get all bent out of shape because they chop it all up to make it fit the time slot. Loverbrains then hunts about for me until he finds the one time they air it as the full version (cuz he's wonderful like that)...and we watch the WHOLE thing! I love all the songs and dance numbers. I love the story too!

One of my favorite childhood memories is of my Dad laughing hysterically over this "Sisters" number that Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye mimic! We couldn't tell if we were having more fun laughing at them or him!

I sing this song, "Count Your Blessings (Instead of Sheep)" to my Sweet Boobah boy when he's sick (which has been often in his little life)...and it's sort of his lullaby!

This is one of those songs they always chop out of the TV edited versions.'s one of my FAVORITES! I love the mustard colored dress on modest and gorgeous!!

I love this sexy crooning number by Rosemary Clooney...AH...what a great movie. It has two of the best crooners of all time in it. Aren't Bing's eyes the clearest blue you've ever seen!? And her dress...wooowooo!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Frugal Friday on Thursday!

Just to keep you on your's Thursday...but I'm feeling frugal. Speaking of expressions...I've had a killer headache today...and was taking a break lying on the couch trying to get a grip on the pain...and my little people were crawling all over my body...cuz they were worried about MomE...and my baby girl decided to be my Dr.

She was poking and prodding me...and then she plunked her dress up shoes on my stomach. I laughed and asked what they were for...and she said, "They're to keep you on your toes!" HAHAHA...she must have heard that expression somewhere...and is trying to make sense of it. I loved it!

I decided to re-purpose a sweater and some scraps from Loverbrain's shirts to make Bible bags for the kids for church. Caleb desperately wants a "purse" to carry his bible and "money for Jesus" on Sundays. I've been putting them in a ziplock baggie but he's not satisfied and neither am I.

My Mom got this sweater for Emmer...and it was too she gave me permission to chop it up! Eeek!
Do you like my little rose with leaves. Okay, I've never done that be nice!
I sewed the bottom inside and then outside. Just for the record, felted angora doesn't like to be sewn through the machine. You have to push it!
Isn't it so cute...and snuggly. I was telling her how it could keep her hands warm too! Neat!
NEXT, I used the two side panels of a shirt, the pocket from another shirt, and some random scrap pieces. I chopped around a CD to get the size I wanted for the bag...I know, how original and er, crafty of me!
Isn't it adorable? I'm glad it looks masculine...
AND...what are the odds...the buttons matched up and buttoned! HA HA ....I totally didn't do that on purpose. That's so funny...when I try to match things they won't...hehehe!

Tasty Thursday: Chocolate Peppermint Cheese Ball!

I recently made this for a Ladies Christmas Fellowship at our church.  It was a big hit...and I loved it!!!  I love how cute it looked in my little garage sale twenty-five cents glass globe cloche too!!

Chocolate Peppermint Cheese Ball

Serve with chocolate-flavored "Nilla" wafers or chocolate graham crackers  
I used plain grahams and they were fine!

2 (12 ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips
1 cups peppermint candies (about 36 candies)
2 cups pecans
8 ounces cream cheese, softened

Process the chocolate chips, peppermint candies and pecans in a blender or food processor until finely ground. Place the mixture in an airtight plastic bag until ready to use. There will be enough mixture to make several cheese balls.  Holy Cow...they aren't kidding...this makes enough for about 4-5 cheeseballs!

When ready to make a cheese ball, place the cream cheese in a bowl. Remove 1/2 cup of the ground candy-nut mixture from the bag and mix with cream cheese. Shape into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours or until firm. I rolled mine in the mixture for the outside ...and obviously decorated with candy canes and button candies too!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

WFW: God with us...

Today as the wind roars is so wonderful to ponder IMMANUEL...God with us...WOW!!  Join all the Word FILLED Wednesday over with Lori at all you have to give.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Shine...don't be Scroogie!

"Oh! But he was a tight-fisted hand at the grind-
stone, Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping,
scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner! Hard and
sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out
generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary
as an oyster. The cold within him froze his old features,
nipped his pointed nose, shrivelled his cheek,
stiffened his gait; made his eyes red, his thin lips blue;
and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice."

A Christmas Carol: Stave 1, Marley's Ghost

I'd love to say that I thought Christmas brings out the best in everyone...but...there seem to be more bleak spots than bright this season so far. No matter how hard I try I always end up over scheduled...often faking the cheerful spirit...often grouching at those I love most. I'd love to say that celebrating advent has solved all my scroogie problems...but it hasn't.

So, should we all be like Polly Anna and "look for the good" in everyone? We could just ignore the bad...right? Well...first one is good...we're all sinners...

Romans 3:23, "
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God," looking for good might just run us into the ground. Not that there isn't any good...I mean today...for example...a nice lady got me a shopping cart and another nice guy put it away. (I must look like I have my hands with two toddlers in the snow! HA!) AND...I'm grateful for their kindness...but the bigger issue isn't really how to deal with the nice people...the do's those scrooges...oh...

For example, those grouchy postmasters who treat you like an idiot cuz you don't quickly hustle to the counter because you are trying to gather your packages and toddlers first...and repeats himself loudly to embarrass you in front of all the other patrons.

OR...those ladies in the checkout who glare at you when you break out your coupons...

OR...the drivers..."holiday shoppers"...insane people who didn't go to driving school...

OR...the people who hammer on you at church to do everything and anything cuz you're young and you have don't work, right? Ugh...

I find myself praying that God would help me me all costs POINT TO CHRIST!

Philippians 2:14, "Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe."

That's my goal for this crazy season... matter how scroogie the individual I encounter may be matter how tired I might be
...even if it's my Loverbrains who should know better (haha)...

Focus on Christ...and maybe it will keep you from road rage, glaring back, or telling someone off this season...if so, I'm glad. Even more important though...share with others about Christ...the GIFT of Christmas...

Matthew 1:21, "She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."

I'm struck by...Isaiah 9:6,
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

That is my God...who can surely help me with any awful scrooge out there...who can help me see scrooge with compassionate, Jesus like eyes...who can share the free gift of salvation with matter how much they embarrass, anger, upset, or demean me...after all, they killed him!

Isaiah 53:7, "He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth."

Align Center

Friday, December 4, 2009

Caffeinated Randomness: How Bizarre, how bizarre...

I'm happily caffeinated...and excited to be with all the caff, half caff and decaf gals again! Today we were instructed to share our most bizarre ornament(s). We're supposed to take pictures and 'splain why we possess these jewels in our collections!
I should start by saying that I LOVE all my Christmas stuff...especially our new Willowtree nativity...that's growing slowly each year.

This year we gained the shepherds, some sheep and the CAMEL. Seriously, that's bizarre...and in my humble opinion a marketing ploy to get you to buy the wise men.

And ya'll know...I have issues with the wise men being at my manger scene...I've already planned for them to be on the bookshelf across the room (which is a two to three year journey for all those interested, ha ha) I was going to leave the camel in the box...but my Loverbrains thought he was cute and felt bad for now he's off to the side...I've decided he belongs to the innkeeper! How bizarre!?
Also bizarre is the use of many decorations from our wedding. We were married Dec. 21st ...almost six years ago. Yeah! I figure it's sort of odd to use things from one's wedding each year...but very cool too...right?!
Okay, I think my most bizarre ornament is this noodle angel. She's made of four types of pasta...bow tie (wings), penne (body), elbow mac (arms), and that Stelline (hair)...a tiny bit of ribbon, music, glue and a wooden ball...and VOILA...a noodle angel. A tad bizarre but pretty cute!!
I get a kick out of this bizarre little melting snowman each year. I should make some more and send them to my Southern relatives. He he he!

Every time I hear the word bizarre I start singing this song...which I know nothing about so had to look up the lyrics to make sure it's er, kosher...I didn't really understand them but there wasn't any I thought I'd include the imeem link in case any of ya'll wanna bop along while reading this...hehehe! Have a very Merry and BIZARRE week!!

How Bizarre - OMC