Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Elegant Life

Pizza Dreams: Dreams you remember upon waking after one has had pizza for dinner the night before. This may be peculiar to my husband only. He has the most fanciful apparitions visit when he eats pizza the night before. He only remembered a bit today, "the doctor said maybe a hypnotist can make him smile again".

I am taken with the phrase "Elegant Life". I don't need pizza dreams, some things just resonate with me.

Resonate:World English Dictionary

resonate (ˈrɛzəˌneɪt)
— vb (often foll by with ) (foll by with )
1. to resound or cause to resound; reverberate
2. (of a mechanical system, electrical circuit, chemical compound, etc) to exhibit or cause to exhibit resonance
3. to be understood or receive a sympathetic response: themes which will resonate with voters
4. to be filled with: simple words that seem to resonate with mystery and beauty
[C19: from Latin resonāre ]

That seems like a great theme for the new year, elegant life.

Something to strive for. Not in furnishings and possessions, but in the quality of the whole scheme of things.

elegant: tasteful, graceful, superior, concise simple succinct, carefully chosen.

Here is something worth pondering from: Computing Dictionary

elegant definition  (From Mathematics) Combining simplicity, power, and a certain ineffable grace of design. Higher praise than "clever", "winning" or even cuspy.

The French aviator, adventurer, and author Antoine de Saint-Exup'ery, probably best known for his classic children's book "The Little Prince", was also an aircraft designer. He gave us perhaps the best definition of engineering elegance when he said "A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."

That makes perfect sense. Time to start afresh.

I hate to clean, there is so much else to do.


Suggests using a timer for 15 minutes in each room;

I love this guy; "[Stuff] robs people of so much," he says. "If your house is full of stuff, all the blessings that could fill your house can't get in. The stuff takes over. It robs you psychologically. You can't be at peace." Peter Walsh: http://www.oprah.com/home/Conquering-Clutter

Peter tells people if they haven't used it in 12 months, it needs to go. That includes the dingy sweatpants Janet's been hanging onto since high school. "If it doesn't fit the vision you have for your space, it's got to go," Peter says.

If it doesn't fit the vision, it's got to go.

I can envision a much better work space and living space, but can I get tough enough on myself to let go of stuff?

Interesting rabbit trail: http://hubpages.com/hub/Wormwood_What_the_Bible_says_about_it_is_amazing

Besties sent to you elegantly of course, xoxo

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Day After..

I love the day after Christmas. Not as much as the day of, it's true, but the day after is very special too. It is the day of new beginnings in my mind. I have learned over the years to find meaning in the holiday by keeping the birth of the Savior as the main focus of the day in my mind and heart. It is a meaningless disappointing holiday other wise. I love giving gifts, it's true, but I could transfer that need to the birthday arena, easily. I know the kids love the legend of Santa Clause and all the fun stories that go along, and I can play along to a certain degree. But the magic of a fat jolly man dropping down my chimney pales to the magic of the nativity story.

Angels, bright shiny stars, prophecy, babies, stables, straw, shepherds in fields, realms of angels, glorious singing, wise men, camels, gifts to the Christ child of wonderfully smelly  valuable items, that is where I find the meaning especially the birth of the Baby.

The birth is the beginning of a new era for mankind. Jesus introduced new thought new methods for living life differently that all people have embraced. A break from the ritual of the day, to embrace a relationship with God the Father. Treating people women and children included with equality and respect. A shift from the body to the mind and the spirit.

I can only imagine the day after for Mary the mother. Holding her son, finally all the anticipation and anxiety of the journey to travel to Bethlehem for the census is over, and she is gazing with wonder into her newborn babies eyes.

New life, I remember so well, that moment, with my own children and the birth of my grand babies. Looking back now, I would have done anything to savor those moments again. Time is a cheat...how fast we travel through but we think it will last forever. And so I begin again, the new life, the day after. The celebration is over and it is time to pack it all away and start the new year asking God to guide and direct us as He guided and directed the 3 wise men with the star above the manger.

May my road lead to the baby in the manger, show me the right road Lord, let me see the light of the star.

Wishing you God's richest blessings...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dear Santa...WHAT HAPPENED!!

I just happened upon this blog post and wanted to share;

"My open letter to Santa Claus

Dear Santa,
First, may I call you St. Nicholas? I'm much more comfortable with that name.
So St. Nicholas, now that the holidays are over I'm writing to tell you that I'm very concerned. I mean, what happened? For hundreds of years you were this beloved saint, a bishop who loved children and saved three sisters from a life of prostitution. You supposedly punched out a heretic at the Council of Nicea and then proclaimed the Truth. You were cool before cool was a word.

But now you're seen as just being a fat guy in some silly red suit. Sure, people think of you as jolly and an all around good guy, but you've been stripped of all your coolness and left as little more than a large elf who gives overindulged kids whatever they want for Christmas...
.....PLEASE go finish, this is a great post.
It has been an incredibly busy holiday season and I still have much to do. We are celebrating "on the cheap" this year, first there is no extra money to spend and second, my kids are grown and buy stuff as they need it. We did get the grandkids bright and shiny new toys because they are God's gift to us and we like to spoil them. But everybody else is getting handmade.
The gandkids are at the Santa age and I have mixed feelings about the whole Santa legend. It is a lot of fun, so true, fun little songs, concerns from them that Santa will burn his behind so we can't have a fire on Christmas eve...etc etc. My husband and daughter morph into stone faced liars as they perpetuate the myth, I squeem as I look at the impersonators dressed in red, waiting to take the kids adorable handwritten lists...as one lonely reindeer looks on. You know, I'm just not sold on this whole thing.
When I was a young mother we went to church. Now there is a reason for the season.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

Here is a very nice compilation http://teampyro.blogspot.com/2010/12/6-part-harmony.html pretty easy to understand, useful for a family sharing time. And some substance for the holidays.

Turning holiday into Holy Day...

 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to Mary. And he came to her and said, "Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!" But Mary was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end."

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger."

Well, my best to you, I hope you are in the middle of a very meaningful merry holy holiday!

The best gifts of all around any Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family wrapped up around each other.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Bright Christmas Greetings!

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens;
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens;

Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Cream-colored ponies and crisp apple strudels;
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles;

Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes;
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes;

Silver-white winters that melt into springs;
These are a few of my favorite things.

When the dog bites,

When the bee stings,

When I'm feeling sad,

I simply remember my favorite things,

And then I don't feel so bad.

Confession: I have a lot of Christmas stuff. Ok, I should say I have a LOT of Christmas stuff. Some of it is old, some of it is toddler shiny plastic, some of it has precious memories, some of it is for making precious memories. There is nothing like those last moments before going to bed at night with the fire glowing warmly and the house dark except for the Christmas lights. It is the time for peace, and it's so easy to settle my busy brain down and just wrap that Christmas joy around me like a blanket. 

Wishing you warm Christmas joy and the peace that comes from the light of the world!

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14

And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy–the Son of God. Luke 1:35

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). Matthew 1:23

And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. (10) And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. (11) For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. (12) And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”  Luke 2:9-12

And suddenly there was 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 those with whom he is pleased!” “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”  Luke 2:13-14

“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times. ”    Micah 5:2

(6) For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (7) Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore.   Isaiah 9:6-7

And if you were around back then, here's a little treat!

haha, can you believe we were ever that young?

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Starting the Christmas countdown...What a cute idea to recycle some stuff into an advent tree!

By the looks of how they ordered the numbers on the drawers, the creator had already had one too many cups of Christmas cheer...

but still cute. The matchboxes are big enough that you could hide a real little treat in there. I especially like the idea of the hershey kisses...wink.

and this one...

I love this pop out tree advent calendar, it is a reproduction from the early 1900's.

This one looks really nice too, a little more grown up.


So what is Advent?

Ad·vent noun \ˈad-ˌvent,

Definition of ADVENT
1: the period beginning four Sundays before Christmas and observed by some Christians as a season of prayer and fasting
2a : the coming of Christ at the Incarnation b : second coming
3not capitalized : a coming into being or use
Origin of ADVENT
Middle English, from Medieval Latin adventus, from Latin, arrival, from advenire
First Known Use: 12th century

Advent is the 4 week period before Christmas when the Church celebrates the first coming of Christ and anticipates his second coming. An advent calendar is more than a way of marking the days until Christmas,

take a look at this one!

This one is a 'Jesse tree'.

"The Jesse tree is a symbol of Jesus' family tree.It also takes us through that first long Advent which lasted from the Fall to the Incarnation." She has included printables for all 4 weeks so you can make your own tree. The one below is the first week.

What an awesome tradition to bring life and deeper meaning into this holiday season.

There is so much fluff and falderah that comes eagerly and willingly in my Christmas plans, decorating, cookie making, gift buying, Christmas books and tv, toys and games...I just love this season. I was really happy to find this page with crafts and activities for the kids that give a spiritual  reason why we celebrate so here's the link..
Lots of fun stuff to pick and choose from. There's even candy recipes. hehe.
Of course I notice the candy recipes...

and...yes... in case you're wondering, these fat rolly polly guys are the spitting image of my fine self!

So as we begin this advent season this is what I want to share with you.

First Week of Advent

"Jesus said to his disciples: 'Be constantly on the watch! Stay awake!...You do not know when the Master of the house is coming.'" Mark. 13:33 First Sunday of Advent

O Jesus, your voice sounds through the house of my world: Be on your guard! Stay awake!

Yet I hardly hear you. Busy with so much, I go about the things I do like a servant trapped in household routine, hardly giving a thought to what my life is about. My spirit within has grown tired and you, my God, seem far away. How can I hear your voice today?

Speak to my heart during this season of grace, as you spoke to your prophets and saints. Remind me again of the journey you call me to make and the work you would have me do. I am your servant, O Lord. Speak to me in this holy season and turn my eyes to watch for your coming.

O Emmanuel, Jesus Christ,
desire of every nation, Savior of all peoples,
come and dwell among us.

find the other 3 weeks here: http://www.cptryon.org/prayer/adx/admedit.html

And I know if you merely read this recipe, you can just about smell it coming out of the oven.

Buttermilk Gingerbread
•1 cup all-purpose flour, sift before measuring

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
 2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 egg, lightly beaten
5 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/2 cup dark molasses
1/2 cup buttermilk (or use 1/2 cup regular milk soured with a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice)
1/4 cup melted butter or shortening
Sift together the flour, salt, soda, and spices. In a mixing bowl, combine beaten egg, sugar, molasses, buttermilk, and melted butter. Add sifted dry ingredients gradually; stirring to blend. Beat until smooth. Turn batter into a greased and floured 8-inch or 9-inch square pan and bake at 350° for about 30 minutes.

So here's wishing you seasons greetings, happiness and true joy beyond what you can even imagine, God's gift to His people!

PS please leave a comment and a link with your favorite advent activities!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday

Happy Day After! and for your consideration, a handy little prewrapped gift for a special man in your life.

Presenting beautiful white bars of soap flecked with blue and bright white. Cut ruggedly square, each weighing 5 to 6 ounces.
"Roanoke Rapids is the perfect men's fragrance. Roanoke Rapids is a crisp, watery fragrance that is surprisingly also adored by women. Brisk and fresh, but casual enough not to overwhelm the senses. An invigorating accord of citrus and herbal notes of bergamot, coriander, rosemary, & sage. A lingering dry down adds woody notes and the crisp ozone of air."

In honor of Black Friday on Etsy...

Black Friday Free Shipping plus save when you Choose 5 Bars for Twenty dollars

The perfect element to include in a gift basket, or to get for yourself.

This perfume oil blend is complicated and sophisticated. A night out on the town. Dinner, theater, drinks, clubbing. the city is strung with lights and life.

Top notes of exotic white tea leaves with a sparkling accord of mulberry, fragrant mimosa, and plum wine. Sophisticated notes of Peony and rare white flowers blend into a floral bouquet with violet, lotus, rose, & waterlilly, grounded by a slightly powdery white musk base.

Wishing you a very happy start to your holidays, may they be merry and bright!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

The time whisks on by,

 just w h o o s h e s doesn't it.

I am going to use lots of recipes from Food Network this year, specifically here.  I don't think I can copy and paste any better than you just taking a hop over and they're all my favorites!  "Clair's Thanksgiving" has some great stuff that I'm going to try.

I will not be posting before turkey day, so I am wishing you lots of gobble gobbles, a huge Thanksgiving hug and blessings from above.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


Weekends are always SUPER busy around here. They are blinks. I go to sleep on Friday night, and Sunday night rolls around in the blink of an eye. Where did the time go? That happens more and more often it seems. Blink (rhymes with jinx) and it will be Friday again and you will find me scratching my head, just-a wonderin...where did the week go.

Well here's something that I can't believe I'm doing... thinking about Christmas, and looking at all the lovelies that are out there. Wouldn't you just love a table or two staged with a few of these items?
Yes, I do find them somewhat inspiring, as in 'I could make that kind' of inspiring. Just look at the precious little deer above, and the wreath accent on the door.
and this little guy looks just like a goat!! Maybe there is such a thing as a Christmas goat, I admit I haven't heard of the like, but I do lead a cloistered life.

And this goofy reindeer really got my attention, I just love this little guy.
all these little pretties are found at World Market.

I just love pepperment bark. It is the perfect finishing touch after a big holiday meal.

This is the recipe I am going to try:

1 pound white chocolate chips
1/2 cup peppermint candy, finely crushed

Preheat oven to 250. Line a 9x13 pan with foil, letting it hang over the sides. Spray foil. Pour the chocolate chips and crunched pepperment candy 'sugar' in an even layer on the foil. Place in oven for 5 minutes or until almost melted. Remove from oven, smooth with an offset spatula or knife. Place in refrigerator until cold and firm, about 20 minutes.

SERIOUSLY simple! I love white chocolate and pepperment, no dark chocolate in this one.

Wishing you lots of sweetness this week!

PS, here's a little sweetness you may have over looked on etsy...
Who knew such things even existed?

Friday, November 5, 2010


From wiki:

"According to Cicero, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of the virtues but the parent of all others.” Multiple studies have shown the correlation between gratitude and increased wellbeing not only for the individual but for all people involved. The positive psychology movement has embraced these studies and in an effort to increase overall wellbeing, has begun to make an effort to incorporate exercises to increase gratitude into the movement. Although in the past gratitude has been neglected by psychology, in recent years much progress has been made in studying gratitude and its positive effects."

I am going to try to be grateful this month. Am I usually? No. Not purposefully mindful of my blessings in idle moments, I am always thinking of what I should be doing... being angry, or some other emotion, or in the middle of a huge project. Seriously, never practicing random moments of Gratitude. If I am praying, I can be thankful to God from whom all blessings flow but then it is gone in the wind.

Now my husband, on the other hand, he tells me at least 10 times a day on the weekends when we are with the grandkids, "we're so lucky". I have to stop and smell the roses then, because we really are just so lucky. I admit it, I am a lucky girl.

So I will share my thoughts this month on gratitude, and I really am going to try to practice that attitude without the gentle prodding from my dear husband, we really do have so much to be thankful for.

November blessings sent your way!

apre Halloween....

Wow how fast did the month of October just seem to evaporate in the mist... and here we are almost to the end of the first week in November. I have a bad feeling about the holidays this year...it will be February before I know what hit me!

We had plenty of trick-or-treaters this year including those of the over 50 age group! haha. Family was here for the revelry and we really had a lot of laughs and a lot of creativity running amok along with just some general run amokness.

I had way to much candy, the baby only likes the mandm's and skittles.
And there was a lot of candy in that bag that walked back in the door as the grownup chaperones were having way too much fun as they were 'leafing' each house.

It was a great year for kids to knock. Lots of little sweeties!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Lately, for my craft fix, I've been creating fabric brooches.

I guess this makes it official,

I formally declare it's time to get out the winter coats

and scarfs.

If you are interested in techniches here's a cornucopic website!

On the rabbit trail today,

 the hook of all hooks ...
for halloween decorations for me, is papier mache and as a public service (wink) I am sharing my unbelievable luck at finding this website

I think Halloween is so popular because it is a way to vent some uncomfortable feelings in a way that is comfortable. It takes scary stuff and makes it a cartoon or a fantasy for an evening.

I have a whole lot more trouble understanding the truth sometimes, for example in my devotions this am:
Acts:5 5Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Christ[a]there. 6When the crowds heard Philip and saw the miraculous signs he did, they all paid close attention to what he said. 7With shrieks, evil[b] spirits came out of many, and many paralytics and cripples were healed. 8So there was great joy in that city.
If I was in that crowd, and heard the many shrieks due to evil spirits leaving bodies and seeing the crippled and the paralyzed walking around dancing and jumping for joy, I think I would be a bit amazed. And I think that should be a costume ...some guy in loose flappy bandages with his crutch lifted high dancing in the street.

And then the tale of Simon the Sorcerer, a guy who just didn't have it quite right...
  9Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, 10and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, "This man is the divine power known as the Great Power." 11They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his magic.
I tend to be human and do the same thing...follow something because I think it's neat. I probably would have been tricked too by the magic of this sorcerer and his convincing speech on his greatness.

12But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13Simon himself believed and was baptized. And he followed Philip everywhere, astonished by the great signs and miracles he saw.
Ah, big, obvious difference here I think, of the genuine power of God, and the phony power of the devil... the words are so telling. It says that Simon the sorcerer  himself was astonished by the great signs and miracles he witnessed, so much so that he got baptized with the rest of them.

14When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. 15When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 17Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. Now there is something worthy to celebrate the receiving of the Holy Spirit.

18When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money 19and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit." ooooo... not good. The Holy Spirit was gifted to mankind at the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is a gift that you have to believe and receive. There is no way that a person can purchase this gift. And I find that that is the way with the devil. There is always a price, a very costly price and with Jesus the price has been paid by his death and resurrection.

20Peter answered: "May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin." Again, a very telling clue is here for us as to the attitude of the human heart... The Apostle peter said,"Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord" here is what happens next:

24Then Simon answered, "Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me." Oh that poor guy. He was so lost in his own self centeredness and need to perform for people to impress them and be the big Kahuna, he missed it again! How often are we like that, we completely miss the point. Peter says, repent and pray to the Lord, and Simon the Magician says..pray for me, he doesn't say OK I'll pray, he says to them -you do the praying.

Peter says he was full of bitterness and captive to sin. That tends to blind a person to the truth. May we walk with the Lord, freed from our bitterness and set free from the bondage that we enslave our selves in, only through the power of the Holy Spirit.

May all your spiritual pursuits this season be seasoned with the Love of God, no matter if you do eat the candy that you got for the trick or treaters or not! Go with God. 


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