Wednesday, January 18, 2017

I've been thinking... about something new...

I've been fairly silent lately.  Part of it has been that developing those new habits I last spoke of has made me somewhat cranky, I wanted to keep that off here, but it's also been that there is just sooo much going on in our world right now that my head has been spinning.

I don't want to comment on all that, I think there is already too much commentary out there, and who wants to know what little ole me thinks anyway?

But I have been thinking and well... I was wondering...  You see I write a little email daily devotion every Monday thru Friday morning for my little churches.  It's short and sweet.  They don't take more than a minute a two (5 tops) to read, but I thought it would be a great way to get our morning started with a little bit of time with God.

They aren't anything grand but I was wondering if maybe others might enjoy getting this little daily devotion to start their day, so... what do you think?  Would you like to subscribe to a daily devotion that comes straight to your email?

No obligation and no spam.  Just a short little email Monday-Friday.  If you'd like to subscribe.  Fill out this form or the form on the sidebar.  I think it will be fun to share a little devotion time with you!



Subscribe to my daily devotions

* indicates required

Friday, January 6, 2017

New Year, New Habits

We are on the 5th day of this new healthy eating lifestyle and it's going well.  I absolutely love it!  Well, the food anyway.  I love to cook but the clean up is killing me!  As soon as we finish a meal and get the kitchen all cleaned up, it's almost time to start the next meal!  There are other things in my life that need to get done too!  You know, like sermon writing, laundry, showering... those crazy things.  So this weekend, I'm hoping to do some meal prepping to see if I can cut down a little on the daily kitchen time.


This week we have had wonderful meals breaded pork chops, baked potato, steamed broccoli and salad, or Sloppy Joe baked potatoes, and fried potatoes, scrambled eggs with veggies.  It's been amazing! So Yummy!

There are a few things I'm missing but not too bad and I'm sure as I get into the full swing of cooking every meal again, I'll get a rhythm again and it'll go much more smoothly and quickly.  It always takes time to get into new habits and we definitely need these new habits of eating well.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year!

Can you believe that it is a new year?  Today we start with a blank page of life (just like every day by the way), what will we do with it?

Last night my little family, DH, DD and I got all dressed up and went out to dinner together.  We seldom ever get dressed up to go to dinner, but we decided that it was New Year's Eve and well, we wanted to end it looking nice.  When we first got to the restaurant, a new one for us, we felt a little self-conscious as others were going in in their jeans and t-shirts but we decided we didn't care what others looked like, we were ending our year looking good.  

We loved the restaurant and there were lots of people inside dressed up for the night out and we enjoyed ourselves immensely.  After dinner, we went looking at lights.  There was one house DD and I had been dying to drive by but we couldn't figure out to get to it... but we found Candy Cane Lane and it was beautiful.  

Then we came home and put on our jammies and watched a scary movie and then a comedy and they ended just in time for our count down to the new year and a toast with sparkling grape juice.  It was a fun evening with family.  It ended perfectly with DS and DIL (Daughter in love) calling to wish us a Happy New Year.  It was perfect.

This morning, I'm up early finishing preparations for worship and putting the ham in the oven for a delay start and chatting with you.  ☺

I've heard a lot people saying that 2016 was a bad year, but I have to say it really wasn't for us.  We had good times and bad but last night as we were toasting we started listing all the good things of 2016.  DS and DIL were married and both graduated college.  DD was accepted into a new dance school where she is getting pre-professional training.  I have been given the opportunity to serve two lovely little churches as their lay pastor.  DS is leading his team at work successfully and has been taking classes and completely then very successfully as well!  We still have a home, and plenty of food, we are all for most part healthy and life has been good to us.  We are happy, not perfect but we are happy and looking forward to a new year, new adventures.

So, how are going to start filling in this blank page we have been given today?  How do you plan to live this year?  My sermon this morning talks about living the way Jesus taught us, with compassion, forgiveness, and love.  How do we do that?  How do you plan to live compassion, forgiveness, and love this year?

Me?  I'm still working this...  I plan on being there for my family and neighbors when they need me.  I plan on giving more.  I plan on smiling more, loving more, laughing more.  I plan on living more.

~~~~
Had to run to DD, she isn't feeling well and needed medicine, poor thing.  

Anyway, Have a Wonderful, Meaningful, FULL New Year!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Reflections

I've been reflecting... as I've been thinking about my sermon for Sunday, I've been reflecting on the last couple of weeks and I've realized that I feel like I've kind of found myself again.  It's nice.  

I think that since I've started serving in my little churches, I've lost a little of myself and over the holidays I've slowed down a bit and have been letting myself just be me.  I've been doing things I enjoy.  I've been taking time to blog, to tidy my house, to hang out with the family.  I've enjoyed it so much.

As we are preparing for a new year, I've decided that I want to really continue to find me, to be me.  I don't want to let me go.

One of the ways I'm going to do this is by getting back in the kitchen again.  I love cooking!  We are going to as a family, work on being more healthy and developing more healthy eating habits.  I can't wait to get in the kitchen and get started.  I'm looking forward to feeling better as I get rid of the junk in my diet.  I'm looking forward to playing in the kitchen! 

I may even let some of this roll over into other parts of my life too!  As I work to get rid of the junk in my diet, I may work a bit on getting rid of some of the junk in my closet and off my desk and dresser.  Just thinking about letting go of the junk in my life makes me feel lighter!

I don't know how much I'll succeed at this but if it will help lead me back to me, if it will help me to feel better and live more fully, then it is so worth it!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas at my House

I can't believe that Christmas is over...  Well, technically it's not if you go by the church year but you know what I mean.  It seemed to go so fast, but we had a wonderful time.  I didn't even let myself get too caught up in missing DS.  That was a real possibility with me but I knew he was with his little family and having a good Christmas and I talked with him and his dear wife often so I was able to focus on those here with me.  It was nice.  We had fun.  We started on the 23rd by going to see the lights at the Crown Center.

They were magical!

It was so beautiful!

So is she.  

We had so much fun enjoying the lights and the trains.  We stopped for frozen custard on our way back to the car and it was yummy.

We came home and watched Christmas movies and just spent time together.

Christmas Eve was a fun day too.

It started with DH running out to get propane so we could fry our turkey the next day and coming home with these cute blinky necklaces.  DD's and mine were a daintier version.

Next we worked on our Christmas cookies!

And they were yummy!

and beautiful.

Next DD worked on her music for the service that night and we worked on our song for Christmas day services too.  Of course then we had to take some family selfies around the piano.

They got a little silly...

And fun!

Isn't this girl beautiful?!

It was a foggy night.  We felt certain, Rudolph would be needed tonight.

The service was great with lots of people.  It was 2 churches combined.  We had 46 people there! It was wonderful.

And the candlelight was beautiful.



Then we came home and watched my most favorite movie EVER!! 
 "It's A Wonderful Life"! 

Christmas morning was great too and my house was filled with beautiful music. DD had to practice for the church and then she also got this!
Yep!  A Ukulele.  She played it for hours.
And then I got this... It's not new but it is fixed!  I've haven't played in years but I played all day on Christmas day!!  I need to get me a book to refresh my abilities.

And then we had this for our yummy breakfast before church.  Cinnamon Biscuits.  Oh, they were soooo good!  

And then we headed to church.  Unfortunately, we didn't get any photos but we had a good crowd then too.  More than I expected actually.  We came home and some took naps, others played their instruments and then we leisurely prepared our Christmas dinner.  It was delicious.  Then after cleaning up we went down to the family room for "A Christmas Story".  It was a lovely day full of family, music, worship.  

I'm quite ready for it to over.  It's been a great Advent season, a little busy for me but I so enjoyed it.  Christmas night as I was telling DD good night, we talked about we weren't ready for it to be over yet and I said, "Well, we are supposed to keep Christmas all year through.  We should be living Christmas Every Day!"  And she replied, "YEAH!  Let's do it!"  

So... for my New Year's resolution, I think it be to live Christmas every day.  To keep Christmas in my heart the whole year through.  Christmas isn't just a day, it's a feeling, it's a way of life and it's what I want for my life every day.




Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas Eve!

Well, I had a little trouble sleeping last night... Today is Christmas Eve and I think I'm a bit nervous about the Christmas Eve service and probably the Christmas day service as well.  These services should be beautiful and leave people feeling closer to God and well, I just don't want to let anyone down.

As I was typing that I thought to myself that what I described should be EVERY Sunday!  So, maybe I don't really have anything to worry about and I'm just a silly worrier.

I am excited that Christmas Eve is finally here!  What I'm especially excited about it the fact that we will have a neat, as in tidy, living room when we wake in the morning to open gifts.  That is my aim every year but I don't know that we have EVER succeeded before so I'm pretty excited!  It's the little things.  ☺

We have a relative busy day today.  We have cookies to cut out, bake, and ice.  We have a cake to make and then a few Christmas dinner preparations to make too.  We have to be a the church at 4:15 which means we have to leave by 3:45 but knowing me it will be earlier.  But in this busyness, I'm going to relax and have fun.  It's going to be a great Christmas Eve!

I hope yours is as amazing as mine will be.  Merry Christmas Eve!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Busyness of the Season

Morning came much too early for me today.  I didn't have to get up when I did but I just feel like I have so much to do and not enough time to do it!  I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed and not, all at once.

This Christmas is a little different.  It's our first without DS, so it's a little sad.  It's also my first as a Lay Pastor, so I've been more busy than usual.  I've been busy with sermon writing, and worship planning.  You might be surprised how much time goes into this.  If you haven't lately, thank your pastor for all they do and if there is one, the church staff too.    

Then there is all the usual stuff that needs to get done for Christmas... mailing packages, wrapping gifts, baking, cleaning, time with the family.  

I wrote a devotion this morning for my little churches about taking time to be quiet and listen.  I've been working on that.  I think that's why I enjoy getting up so early, even when I don't want to, so I have this quiet, peaceful time.  Time to reflect, to listen, to just be.   

Then I shared questions with our online Bible study and reflected on them too.    The questions asked about Christmases Future.  What you envision for them.  How might you better glorify Christ in future Christmases and it got me thinking about the busyness of this season.  Example:  This morning, I wrote and emailed the devotion, posted to the online Bible study, need to go get ready for the in person Bible study, eat breakfast with DD, do the bulletins for Saturday and Sunday, tweek my sermon for Sunday, make arrangements to have the elements consecrated for Saturday, take DD to dance and the list goes on a bit but you get the general idea.  It's a bit much for me.  I'm pretty much a homebody and truth be told... a bit lazy.  But I don't have time for the lazy anymore!  

But I digress... in the busyness of the season, how am I finding times and ways to glorify Christ?  I'm thinking I need to work on this bit and I would like to see it better in my future.  How do you glorify Christ during the Christmas season?  Share your ideas in the comments!