These are a few of my favorite things…Jesus

blog-for-christmas-post-004.jpgblog-for-christmas-post-003.jpgChristmas tree

This afternoon after lunch my Tony and I along with the boys will celebrate the birth of Jesus with some Walmart cupcakes and songs.  I can’t wait!  He is the reason for our celebration. 

As I look at my Sawyer, a mere 10 months, I think of Mary and how she must have marveled at her Son.  Sammy is 3, and I’m certain she took delight in Jesus at this precious age – busy, inquisitive, loving, compassionate.  Was she challenged with discipline issues??  As I do, surely she embraced each moment of challenge seeking God’s guidance.  A recent sermon our pastor preached on Joseph revealed a great deal about him I had not previously gathered.  Although we think we don’t know much about him, he was obedient to God’s leading each time he’s mentioned in God’s Word.  Certainly they knew their Son was special for many reasons. 

What I like about Jesus’ birth was his humble beginnings.  And actually, humble he remained.  He’s been my friend and held my hand for many years now.  I praise Him for He is as real to me as the air I breathe – yet I can not physically see both.  But I need both.  I can’t imagine my life without Him.  1 Peter 1:8 & 9 (NIV) says “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”  AMEN!  Oh, how grateful I am for the grace given me to believe in Him! 

As Sammy and I have discussed having a birthday celebration for Jesus, I can see the look in his eye, wondering “what do we give Jesus on his birthday?”  I’ve told Sammy the best gift we have to offer Him is ourselves.  I’ve trusted Father to convey the truth of that to Sammy’s heart.  The nativity scene was out this morning and when Sammy woke up he said “But where is Baby Jesus?” Literally, he’s on top of the fridge, but I told Sammy when we celebrated His birthday we would put him in the manger.  But he also wanted to know “Really, where is Jesus, Momma?”  So I explained that He lives in mine and daddy’s heart because we believe in Him.  Ah, Father, help me navigate these questions with truth and grace!

So Jesus not only had humble beginnings, but He remained so during His life here, because He came to serve, not to be served and to give His life as a ransom for many (Matt. 20:28, NIV).  He rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, as scripture foretold, “Say to the Daughter of Zion, ‘See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.'”(Matt. 21:5, Isa. 62:11, Zec. 9:9).   He bore my disgrace and shame willingly by being crucified for my sins – He was completely innocent of any sin (John 19).  He rose from the grave (John 20) Praise HIM!  He is indeed alive and seated at the Right Hand of God in the heavenly realms (Eph. 1:20)!  And He is coming back at just the right time. And when He does, according to John in Revelation 19:11-16, “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True….on his head are many crowns….on his robe and on his thigh he has the name written:  KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

Rejoice all ye people!

By the way, that’s not my Chevy Chase Christmas tree pictured above.  That’s a tree from Oakland Height’s Baptist Church Festival of Trees.  The tree had on it the Name’s of God.  It was my favorite of the festival.  Beautiful!


We’re wall to wall here, people!

I think in a previous post I made the statment that we had plenty of room here in our house.  I was wrong.  Add that 7 foot “Chevy Chase” leaning Christmas tree to our living room and there’s only one way in and one way out of that “box” called a living room!  It seems I have a thing for wood furniture.  Probably my enjoyment of anything wood began with my family pieces passed down to me.  I have 3-4 pieces of furnture, well, 5 now that I think about it, that I will not part with.  That leaves two pieces – well, 3, that are up for grabs.  Well, regardless, nothing is going anywhere within the next few weeks, so I’m still wall to wall.  Did I mention there’s a pack-n-play up in the living room?  This is Sawyer’s play place so it can’t come down yet.  His play place is quite helpful and since he and Sammy share a room, it allows him time to himself to play.  I believe everyone should have a place to themselves that’s all their own.  Can you tell I’m an only child and an introvert??  Anyhow, the pack-n-play works great but takes up space.  Since our plan is an “open” plan, our kitchen connects to our LR.  Sometimes I find myself going in circles just to avoid running into Sammy or Tony.  And somtimes I simply find myself going in circles regardless.  Can we knock out a wall anywhere?

Anyhow, after two weeks, maybe 3 of having this Christmas tree in our house, I’m ready for it to move on!  It is barely decorated and I have TRUELY had to leave behind the perfectionist in me on this one.  What is it about Christmas that makes us go looney -especially us ladies/mom’s responsible (are we really?) for creating the “perfect holiday?” I must let go of that.  If I turn crazy on my family (which I have, by the way, this season), it certainly doesn’t add to a peaceful holiday – ah, yes, that’s what I desire to strive for.    Now I’ve found the replacement for “perfect.”  Brilliant!  And this makes sense considering one of my favorite pieces in my kitchen is a beautiful bright plate that says “Shalom.”  My Auntie brought this back to me from the Holy Lands.   So in my quest for an outward peace and inward peace,  I can leave behind several things:  1) Sawyer’s stocking will be a substitute sock – one of Tony’s of course, because my previous plan of a quilted reindeer stocking is not complete and I refuse to send myself to crazy land to finish it the next 24 hours.  2)  It’s OK that I didn’t bake this holiday and that the cookies Sammy and I will leave for “Ole’ Saint Nick” will be from the freezer!  Trust me, he’ll love ’em! 3) That my sweet Sammy didn’t get EVERYTHING he wanted for Christmas is downright OK!  Years ago I heard wisdom of limiting the # of gifts a family gave their children to 3 each.  Well – I think this is wise.  And wiser still the older they get since the “toys” become more expensive!  and 4) It’s ok that I had to make a last minute run to Walmart – no one died!  I finally have finished my shopping!

I was sharing with Tony that I thought I’d heard the definition of Christmas one time as “Making much of Christ.”  So we asked Sammy why we celebrate Christmas and he replied “It’s baby Jesus birthday!”  YES!  Thank you for the joy of teaching him the REASON FOR THIS SEASON, and bless his MDO Teachers and Sunday School teachers for reinforcing that!  Tomorrow after lunch we will have a cupcake (storebought – another peace) birthday celebration for Jesus.  We will make much about Jesus and leave the rest behind, or rather, rest leaving unneccessary things and thoughts behind. 

 Come, let us Adore Him. 

These are a few of my favorite things…coffee

dec142007-all-676.jpgcoffee mugs and makerWhen I was pregnant with my first child coffee became one of those things on my list of “do not….”.   I didn’t know I was pregnant at the time, but Thanksgiving morning of 2003 the smell of coffee caused an unpleasant “irk” in me – “How strange!” I thought.   After having Sammy I tried to pick up the habit, but since I was nursing and he was my first, I tried to limit my consumption of caffeine (and at the time thought decaf wasn’t very good…).  

Just recently I passed on my 13 year old coffee maker to my mom since hers was on the fritz.  (Little does she know she’s getting a new one for Christmas!)  Now I’m not a big spender on coffee makers.  It doesn’t have to look fancy.  However, I do like a timer and automatic shut-off. 

To continue this post, this morning I find myself, well, actually, my children up much earlier than I anticipated considering they went to bed later.  So I’m taking some time to chill alone with a cup of my semi-favorite coffee and working on my blogs.   The reason is my semi-favorite is because I’ve combined my favorite, Bakers Treats by First Colony, Cinnamon Roll coffee, with Folger’s Breakfast Blend.  I’ve done this in order to conserve my CR coffee until I can make it back to Albertson’s for a one item purchase.  I hope I can find that silly card all the grocery stores like you to have, except of course, Walmart and Super 1. 

This coffee is a delightful treat and I usually have it in my favorite Snowman coffee cup.  I recently cleaned out my coffee mugs and have no idea what I will put it in once the holidays and flakey winter season in East Texas is gone.  Try it!  You might like it!

The Mouse ran away with the cheese

Well, since last report of declaring war on the mice, we have terminated (isn’t that a nicer word??) 9.  Yes, 9.  Ugh and Yuck!  Tony dug under the cabinets again to see if there were any holes he missed and set 2 more traps.  No mice the last two nights and I’ve heard no “mice dancing” before going to bed or when up during the night.  Sammy set the trap off next to the fridge yesterday with a string of garland he was playing with…other than eating at Cheddar’s after church, I think that was the highlight of his day.  Previously he’d gotten his finger caught not once, but twice, in the trap.  Boys.

Funny thing is I went to look for my triangle of parmesan cheese last night and again this morning…nowhere to be found in the fridge.  I had it out at some point a few days ago…so I’m thinking the mouse ran away with it.  Lovely ending to the story, er, saga.  Could be why there’s no more in the house – they carried the cheese away!

Let’s hope this is the end of this story!

Five Blind Mice

I have 2 thoughts.  1.  Gross.  2. Sad.  But not so sad as to let them stay.  We have removed 5 mice from our home and still counting.  I’m thinking they’ve been residing in the “inn” under the fridge.  Those caught in the trap next to the fridge have gone looking for the ones who haven’t returned from their escapade under the sink. 

There will always be room for Jesus in the “Stone Inn” but there is no room in the Inn for MICE!  “BE GONE!” as a friend would say!

More Mousecapades of the Unashamed Mouse Family

Yes, there was actually a family of mice, three of them – a Momma, Daddy and Baby in our house.  Just in case it was family of more than three, we’ll be setting some more traps today. 

As I sat down Sunday night to read in the living room after all was quiet in the house, I heard a mouse rustling around in the kitchen (remember, Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse….except in the Stone house).  Of course, that makes me a little anxious cause I know he’s under the sink and I’m waiting for the dreaded “SNAP!” of the trap.  It doesn’t come before I finish my chapter.  Off to bed.  Sawyer was awake a few times that night and at one point I thought I heard a faint “SNAP!” in the distance.  I’m too sleepy to go check this out.

So Monday morning  I checked the mousetrap by the fridge (where one Unashamed Mouse had previously trod) and all the marshmellow was gone!  So I call Tony and give him the “Mouse report” for the morning.  When I get home from a long day of errands with the kids (we all survived, including a few of Sammy’s “throw downs” in Khol’s over “no candy is on my list today” reply), I check under the sink and Viola!  “Ding Dong, the  mouse is dead!”  Sammy and the “Exterminator” checks him out after our dinner has settled and Tony’s reply is that he’s bigger than the first.  Well, of course he is!  He’s continued to eat, what I do not know!  But this does mean that the Unashamed Mouse is still with us, b/c I know he was very small. 

So Monday night after all is quiet, except the stirring of the mouse, I hear another one under the fridge.  I can’t believe this….there are 3!  Tony sets a good trap next to the fridge….and viola!  the baby mouse is history! 

“Why my house, you three blind mice!?”  I almost resorted to getting a cat, but a trap had to do instead.  Next time I’ll post a sign on the back door, “No mouse allowed!”  Does that work like the “No Solicitor” sign on businesses?  Toot toot was certainly no help on the back patio!  She was probably cheering they got to stay inside!

These are a few of my favorite things….great customer service!

I’ve been searching (as best I can..) for the “perfect” Reindeer Stocking for Sawyer.  He seems so like a Reindeer – cute and laid back, so easy going.  Few things rock his boat.  Sammy has a Snowman stocking – perfectly describes him; he’s either ready to roll or melting! 

So today I took myself (without kids) to Sharman’s Sewing Center in Longview.  What a brave adventure for those sales folks.  They were so kind.  I know little, very little, about sewing.  I can’t even seem to change the bobbin thread on mine/mother’s sewing machine.  Sad. 

So I explain what I’m looking for and am pointed in a direction of these wonderful books of sewing projects that I hope to check into later.  Beautiful.  One is of a beatitudes quilt.  I think I would enjoy that project at a later date.  Anyhow, I settle on a pre-made reindeer stocking (Cute!) that needs sewing and embeleshments.  I’m really looking forward to putting this together and will NO DOUBT need the help of my Heavenly Father (who did teach me how to paint my front porch in the most wonderful way) and I’m guessing and hoping He’s going to let my precious friend Jerrie help me out.  Binding…. how on earth does one accomplish that?  I cannot wrap my mind around it.  But I am excited about hand stitching around the reindeer and adding stitching to make it our own. 

The folks at Sharman’s were so nice, dealing with an “I don’t know, but that I want a reindeer and willing to do anything to make it a happen” kindof gal like me.  Thanks!