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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A White Christmas Party

One of our Christmas highlights was
hosting a dinner party for our Dinner Club.

I knew right away that I wanted a "white Christmas" theme.
So I kept my eyes open for inexpensive and unique things.

It was SO WONDERFUL putting it all together.
I love this kind of thing.....

I used a lot of what I had on hand with
some ornaments & flowers added here and there.
I frosted the tall candle holders by spraying a small amount of water in them and then sprinkling sugar inside. It drys nicely and sticks well and looks lovely. Took some Polaroid pictures of some of the decorations
around the house and then placed the pictures on the table as favors.

Fresh tulips from a local flower shop and white carnation mum thingys from Costco.

Ornaments are from the Dollar store.

For the ladies I made a jar filled with marshmallows
which said, "LOVE and JOY come to you."
I found the Christmas gift tags here. You'll love them!!
This was actually my gift for many of my family & friends this year. We started getting together earlier this Summer,
really out of nowhere. Many of us are related, but rarely saw one another. So one day we decided, "hey, lets start a Dinner Club."

And so it began!!

After dinner we retired to the living room.

I've always wanted to say that. :)

Vitamin Soda??
oh well, it was tasty and festive!!

Made some regular candle holders come to life by
making a copy of my favorite Christmas card, cutting it out and taping it
inside the candle holder.
And of course Fiona was serenading us.

We are so blessed to have these friends beside us in this journey of life.....and hey, why not start YOUR OWN Dinner Club in 2011??
It's a blast!!!!! For most of us this is our only time out each month and so it IS GREATLY ANTICIPATED!! We each take turns hosting it and each couple brings one main dish and one dessert. Couldn't be easier......except this time we ordered from Olive Gardens which was even easier. They forgot to place 2 of the main meals in the bag so Jake had to go back out to pick them up. I said to the General Manager when I called to tell her the problem, "and if you could fill a bag with desserts that would be wonderful!" I know, can you even believe I said that?? And fill she did.......the manager FILLED a bag to it's brim with every dessert they had AND gave him a $25 gift card, so it was worth the extra trip!! They were very sorry and really, it wasn't that big of a deal, but a nice compensation for our time.
We were delighted & sent on a sugar rush!!!

"I felt it shelter to speak to you."

~Emily Dickinson~

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmastime is here.

Merry Christmas
from our living room
to yours!

Thank you for journeying alongside me this year here in blogland!
I'm truly looking forward to 2011 and all that may be in store for each of us.
I trust that wherever you find yourself this Christmas weekend
YOU WILL FEEL the HOPE He brings!
He has come to our cold, dark stable of life and FILLED us ANEW!!
And He is near to ALL who call on Him!

*the joyful*
*the brokenhearted*
*the lonely*
*the glad*
*the hospital bedside*
*the wanderer*
*the free*
*the homesick*
*the shipwrecked*
*the sad*
*the bound*

"Love divine all love excelling, Joy of heaven to earth come down;fix in us Thy humble dwelling, all Thy faithful mercies crown; Thou alone are all compassion, pure, unbounded love Thou art; visit us with Thy salvation, enter every longing heart; Love divine, Love divine, Love divine, Love divine, Love divine."
~by J. Stainer found in a beautiful music book, dated 1909~

Be back later next week....until then my friends.

"One of the most glorious messes in the world
is the mess created in the living room on Christmas day.
Don't clean it up too quickly."
~Andy Rooney~

Monday, December 20, 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010


Do I really matter? A loaded question to be sure. Something that can sometimes take over our thoughts and our spirit and weigh us down, suck us dry and leave us feeling like.....we don't matter!
On the other hand we have those that feel they matter TOO much, we all have someone like that in our lives and it's just....annoying. There's such a balance in knowing that we DO matter, BUT not THAT much! In talking and visiting with my Mom and sisters this morning we shared some thoughts and desires on FAITH, HOPE, GRACE AND BELONGING. We talked about our perspective of God's Presence in our life, His doings, His non-doings, (that we perceive as His absence).

The way He may answer or be silent in any given way in our daily lives.
One subject that really stood out to me this morning was learning to realize how little we matter APART FROM GOD. He needs us to build His Kingdom, not ours.

To FACILITATE His redemption & restoration, but not to BE His redemption or restoration.

Our life can FEEL worthless and meaningless V*E*R*Y quickly when we are searching for our OWN goals, paths, ways and doings. He wants to have HIS WAY in our life, He is the POTTER and WE ARE THE CLAY....something we so easily forget. He wants us to surrender to His way of doing things, His way of EASY TO SAY, so HARD TO DO.
OUR SOUL IS LONGING FOR HIM, even when we don't realize it or choose to shut off that longing by filling it with something earthly, something filled with dust. What SWEET RELEASE comes when we SURRENDER to Him....and not just for the sake of SALVATION, the sake of being ON OUR WAY TO HEAVEN......
May we, (I) remember that on our BEST days WE*ARE*STILL*JUST*CLAY!

You are the CREATOR and I am WHAT YOU MAKE!!

In Ephesians 2 it says,
"But because of his great love for us, God,
who is rich in mercy,
made us ALIVE WITH CHRIST...."

"....The purpose of this action is not so that we can live lives that matter.
Instead, Paul says that God did this so that he might display the riches of His grace expressed in Christ Jesus for the ages to come."
~If you're interested in more on this subject please read this beautiful article called
"The Fear of Not Mattering."~

"God of ALL, God of me, bring us to a place of TRUE SURRENDER. Help me to realize it's not just a little prayer on a Sunday morning, it's a cry on a Tuesday night when the house is quiet and on a Thursday afternoon when I'm tired and worn out and living in Grouchville. You are SOVEREIGN and most of the time YOUR GRACE COMES IN WAYS WE CANNOT SEE . BUILD OUR FAITH TO MATCH THE FAITH OF THOSE GONE BEFORE US.....not the faith that LOOKS GOOD to others, BUT THE FAITH THAT PLEASES, DELIGHTS AND STIRS YOUR, the way
amen. so be it.

*pictures from snow storm February, 2010*