Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Wonderful Friend

Phia has left the room momentarily and has also left her computer open.
So, I'm taking this golden opportunity to tell the world how awesome, sweet, amazing, talented, beautiful, and what wonderful friend my sister is.
I would love to go into more detail but I hear her entering the room.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Conclusion of the Matter ...

{after all of the festivities this weekend, lack of sleep, etc. my creativity is at an ebb ... howevah, for your sake, I shall endeavor to muster what little remains. =}

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me twelve drummers drumming.

Just as drummers beat out a loud, steady rhythm for marchers to follow, so the Apostle's Creed sets forth the beliefs of those who call themselves Christians. The twelve drummers represent the twelve vital Christian beliefs as stated in the Apostle's Creed.

I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father. He shall return to judge both the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. "

[You can't convince yourself. Have the past twelve days, honestly been nothing more than -
a dream?
That wee sister of yours has just cheerfully jumped on you (dumbfounded that you could still be sleeping at 6:00 a.m., Christmas morning!), until at last she had the satisfaction of seeing your eyes reluctantly open. She extricates you from your awfully snug kingdom of blankets, and leads you (perhaps drags you is more befitting) out to the living room, so that you too can share in the excitement. Your senses still a bit foggy, you humor her by counting the number of packages bearing her name, and help her discreetly shake/feel and otherwise try to discern their contents. Leaving her contentedly counting, you make your way to the study. Almost hesitantly, you open the door. Not a feather to be seen. You look out the window - confirming your hunch, there is nary a barn in view.
As wrapping paper is joyously flying around the room, you sit and ponder quietly to yourself, sipping tea from your favorite mug. Interrupting your reveries, you hear the delighted laugh of your merry sister, who has just received an ornament of a dancing ballerina. She immediately declares that it has reminded her of a song, and commences with (lisp and all ;), "On the firtht day of Chrithtmath, my true love gave to me ... " A smile plays at the corners of your mouth. You shall never think of that song in the same manner again - you join in with the rest, thanking your True Love for sending His Son.
For that is the greatest gift of Christmas.]

It is my sincere desire that you have enjoyed and learned something new from these posts ... my apologies that they were not always consistent; nor I daresay, what you were at times anticipating . =/ All of your kind words of encouragement and comments have been a treasured gift. Readers are what make a blog possible - so, thank you muchly!

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!


Friday, December 23, 2011

A Festive Outing ...

[This morning, you received a telegram, giving you instructions to attend the annual Christmas parade (hosted by a neighboring town). You are to devote your particular attention to the Medieval Pipers. The meaning of this venture shall be explained upon your return home. Even though the eight maidens (and their bovines), nine ladies, seven svarns, six geese (and the newly hatched goslings!), four calling birds, three French hens, two turtle doves, and your little partridge have all become dear companions (in some way, shape, form, or another), you think that perhaps it would become slightly awkward to bring them all; thus, you have purposed to attend the event alone.
The eagerly anticipating crowd is noisily mulling around, endeavoring to acquire the street corners with the most advantageous views.
It begins.
You see the float with the live Nativity pass by; followed closely by walking candy-canes and gingerbread citizens, who are distributing ... candy-canes and gingerbread cookies (ironically). Ah, you can hear them now! The tune of Good King Wenceslas reaches your ears, and you watch the Pipers approach. You feel strangely beckoned to follow - their melody is both soft and strong (like cheese ;). Pushing your way through the crowds, you smile to yourself - reveling in your child-like pursuit of the Eleven Pipers Piping. Upon your arrival at home, you find another telegram awaiting you - the sequel to the one prior.]

On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me eleven pipers piping.

"Eleven pipers represent the eleven apostles who were chosen by Jesus and remained faithful to him. (there were twelve before the betrayal and suicide of Judas.) Like children joyfully following a piper, these disciples followed Jesus. They also called others to follow him. they piped an everlasting tune of great joy - the salvation message of Jesus' resurrection from the dead.

These are the twelve [Jesus] appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter); James son of Zebedee and his brother John...Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him. ~ Mark 3:16-19."

I cannot fathom that tomorrow is Christmas Eve *shakes head in disbelief* ... Merry Christmas Eve Eve to all!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Not Happening ...

I tried, and I tried (and others tried for me =) to think of some feasible scenario to fit the Ten Lords a-leaping into this little narrative - from police officers on pogo sticks, a group of ten bungee-jumping lords from England, a traveling troupe of Irish step-dancers, to presidential bobble-heads that bounce, etc.; alas, the sting of defeat was inevitable. I am greatly saddened if I have dashed any (or all) of your expectations for the ten lords ... come, come! Not to fear, I shall still share with you the special meaning behind these lordly chaps. =)

On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me ten lords a -leaping.

"Lords were men with authority to command people's obedience. Ten lords a-leaping symbolize God's ten basic laws, otherwise known as the Ten Commandments.

You shall have no other gods. You shall not make and bow to any carved images. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain. Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Honor your father and your mother. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor's things. ~ Exodus 20:3 - 17 {paraphrase}."

Only two days of Christmas remaining, and then - voila! - it's Christmas. =) I do hope that you have had (unlike myself) a head start on your gift-giving. I tell you the truth, each December, Christmas springs upon me more swiftly than the year previous. =} Our little Smoo is coming to visit tomorrow! And if he isn't enough to fill my {earthly} cup of Christmas-cheer to overflowing, I don't what is. =)


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Swirling, Twirling, Spinning 'Round

[To be sure, the means by which some of the gifts have arrived, up to this point, does have you quite befuddled; however, this one takes the proverbial cake! This morning, you blithely make your way down to the barn (amongst other responsibilities, to see if those baby geese have shown their beaks), fully expecting to be received by the sound of lowing and squawking, etc. Instead, your ears are greeted with the voices of fiddles, banjos, and the like - you hesitantly open the side door and peer in. Positioned in the loft are the eight maidens, displaying their un-spoken musical talents; below, are ^nine^ ladies, do-si-do-ing to their hearts' content, in time with the Virginia Reel (the menagerie of onlookers adding their voices to the music, when they feel led)! The song just ended. You timidly approach - the ladies are laughing and trying to catch their breath, after their jolly frolic. One glances in your direction, seeing you for the first time; she calls to the others, and they all rush to meet you! Introducing themselves, and eagerly grabbing your hand in turn: "Patience", "Joy", "Peace", "Charity", "Kindness", "Gentle", "Essie (S-C)", "Goodness", and "Faithful".]

On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me nine ladies dancing.

"The nine ladies remind us of the nine different fruits that the Holy Spirit produces in the lives of God's children. Just as these ladies dance joyfully, so can every Christian rejoice over the life changing fruit of the Holy Spirit. Gifts like love and joy and peace are worthy of great celebration!

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. ~ Galatians 5:22 - 23."

A most Happy Winds-day to all you dear readers!


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Expansion Project

[It's confirmed. You had been entertaining the idear since the French Hens; but, after today's gift, it is an absolute necessity - you must build a barn. Eight cows will simply not be tolerated in the house (not to mention the eight maidens who so kindly offered to stay for an allotment of time, to help you take care of the newly acquired kine!). In addition, it might also be prudent to build several bunkhouses - not knowing how long you will be called upon to house eight additional people. As you inspect each of the bovines, you find a meaning-note secured to the bells around their necks; 'poor in spirit'; 'mourn'; 'meek'; 'hunger and thirst'; 'merciful'; 'pure in heart'; 'peacemaker'; 'persecuted because of righteousness'.]

On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me eight maids a-milking.

"The eight milking maidens represent eight unique teachings of Jesus sometimes called the Beatitudes. These words of Jesus, from his Sermon on the Mount, nurture and strengthen us much the way milk nourishes a child.

Blessed are the poor in spirit...blessed are those who mourn...blessed are the meek...blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness...blessed are the merciful...blessed are the pure in heart...blessed are the peacemakers...blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness. ~ Matthew 5:3-12"

Don't think about it too much, but tomorrow is already the middle of the week ... =O! Unfathomable. This year has been *incredible*, and I am sad to be bidding it farewell soon; yet, I eagerly anticipate experiencing what God has written for next year! Oh the thought of it gives me heart-thrills. =)

God bless us, everyone!


Monday, December 19, 2011

An Eternity Of Birds ...

*heavy sigh* I am deeply sorry for having missed posting yesterday ... on the bright side, you get ^two^ posts today! ;D

[You are out on your afternoon walk (just before tea-time =) - there is a very light snow quietly drifting down, tenderly caressing the earth in it's placid merriment. You dust the whiteness from your coat, as you approach the door, and are almost instantly greeted by your effervescent child-sister; who is predicting, quite adamantly, that you will receive more birds today. You laugh to yourself as she begins naming possibilities (inwardly cringing at the word pigeon). Entering the 'Bird Cage' (which was formerly your study), you make your way around the cooing/clucking/calling/honking occupants, towards the window that overlooks the backyard. And there, as if to defy your {wishful} doubts, are ^seven^ svarns* a-swimming - it's as if they came down with the snowfall, they look so peaceful and white. You sigh with relief, to find that they do not match your sister's list of candidates. As you make your way to their location, your eye catches something bobbing in the water - you gently pull the note from the bottle and discover the significance of this gift.]

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me seven swans a-swimming.

"Seven swans symbolize the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. Just as baby swans grow and change from "ugly ducklings" into beautiful graceful birds, so do God's children grow and change through the work of the Holy Spirit. The various gifts of the Holy Spirit are distributed for the benefit of the entire body of Christ.

We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. ~ Romans 12:6-8"

*I have been having fun researching the different animals that take part in The Twelve Days of Christmas, and found that 'svarn' is Old Norse for 'swan'. Possessing a great fascination for languages, and a joy when it comes to learning new words, I thought perhaps some of you might enjoy it as I did. =)


Sunday, December 18, 2011

Six Potential Feather-Pillows

Geese - they are as familiar to me as grass or trees. On the surrounding property in my neighborhood, there are several tribes of - geese - that somehow manage to *always* prolong their summer holiday ... through the entirety of winter, to be precise. I've given it some consideration, and I have arrived at the conclusion that they're all dyslexic; the reason being, *most* sane fowl fly [South] for the winter, correct? Mmmhhmm, not these special birds {perhaps, in their minds, it's because they're already South of Canada? Anyhoo...}. It is their tribal tradition to be unconventional. My point being, there would have to be an enormously special reason for me to accept a gift of *six* geese a-laying (goslings, I'm fine with). ;) So let us learn something new! =)

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me six geese a-laying.

"In many cultures, eggs symbolize new life. Six geese laying eggs became reminders of the six days of creation when God, by his Word, brought forth life on earth. God spoke and filled the earth with plants, birds, animals, and people during the first six days of creation, as found in chapter one of the book of Genesis.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth ... God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. and there was evening, and there was morning ~ the sixth day. ~ Genesis 1:1, 11"

Oh what a glorious day! I had the very happy privilege to Carol the Good News of Christmas with a group from my church, and share the gift of Jesus' love with those who were walking by, or who stopped to listen. =) "It is more blessed to give, than to receive" - I concur! And to consider, that sharing Jesus' love with others is not just something you can do with your church, once a year at Christmas time - you can *choose* to do it every day, anytime you are able to interact with other people ... be it only a smile, or having the opportunity to talk with them. My Jesus is awe-some! And may I never be so selfish as to keep His free gift all to myself - He intended for me to share it with others. <3

*sigh* May your day be as merry and bright as mine was (and even more so)! =)


Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Respite from Feathers

Argh ... this will be brief. =}

[Today, you are anticipating the post-man's arrival - knowing that whatever your True Love will send, it will be special, and have some sort of purpose. You're trying not to think about how much it would be appreciated if he would stop sending you poultry -- focusing on the positive here. The familiar sound of the doorbell rings. You take the package from that ever incorrigibly cheerful post-man, half anxious about what it's contents are; yet, irresistibly curious. The package is smaller than all the previous ones "Aha!" You think to yourself, "No more birds." =) You open the top, and enclosed are five well polished pieces of jewelry. You smile, and eagerly search for the meaning-note.]

"On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me five golden rings. Gold rings are among the most valuable and treasured of all gifts. The five golden rings represent the first five books of the Old Testament: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. These books, known to the Jews as the Torah, were treated with great reverence and considered to be worth more than gold. In these books, Moses, the commonly accepted author, records the creation story and the beginning history of the people of Israel.

No prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord kew face to face ... for no one has ever shown the mighty power or performed the awesome deeds that Moses did in the sight of all Israel. ~ Deuteronomy 34:10,12 "

Not much for words at this time of night/morning. =} So, I had better say,


Friday, December 16, 2011

And yet *more* Birds

Once again, I crave your indulgence, there being no pictures in this post either. =/
Quite honestly, I didn't think that I would last this long...posting every day and all of you who do post every day, my admiration for you increases by a great percentage - it certainly takes dedication. =P

[You find yourself sitting in your study one fine day, endeavoring to block out the sounds of the household. You muster all the concentration at your disposal, trying to write your family Christmas letter (the deadline of which is impending!)- when you hear a noise, resembling that of a Rook; but, not quite the same. You lift up your head and pause, then think nothing of it, and return to your task. The sound comes again, this time sounding more impatient. Still you disregard it, and press on with the letter. Suddenly, and most surprisingly, the latch windows in your study are thrown open, and in fly four birds, about the size of a Blue jay (perhaps a bit bigger), with red bows tied around their necks. One comes over to your desk (their audacious leader no doubt), and begins to peck at your papers - as you are shooing him off, a note falls from his bow to the desk. You pick it up, and it reads, "Merry Christmas, darling! I do hope that these fowl will not inconvenience you too dreadfully; it's just that they represent something special, that I wanted to remind you of. Please take care of Luke, Matthew, John, and Mark. Fondly, Your True Love." Somewhat puzzled, you write in your journal entry that evening:

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me four calling birds.]

"The four calling birds are reminders of the four Gospel writers: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. These writers of the first four books of the New Testament proclaimed the testimony of Jesus' life and teachings. Like birds calling out with loud and distinctive voices, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John spread abroad the news of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection. They called people to faith in Jesus as their Savior.

Jesus did many other miraculous signs...which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. ~John 20:30-31"

I wish you could come over to my house ... we would sit in the living room (where our shimmering Christmas tree is standing, quite contentedly), and I would bring you a warm cup o' tea, with a serving of raw Baklava, and we would discuss merry Christmas-y things. =)Ah well, perhaps in the future...


Thursday, December 15, 2011

This Late Hour ...

*gasp* There are no pictures in this post! =O I attribute it to the lateness of the evening . You have my deepest apologies. =( You shall simply have to use your magnificent imagination! =)

"Merry Christmas ma'am/sir! These just arrived, registered mail - three chickens, addressed to you!"
[You silently take the clucking crate from the amused post-man, and wonder where you will keep the hens...pondering about what you could possibly receive next.]

On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me three French hens.

"French hens were valuable poultry during the sixteenth century - only the rich could afford them. These costly birds symbolized the three valuable gifts given to Jesus by the wise men: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
Gold was the most precious of all metals. Frankincense and myrrh were expensive spices used as incense and for burials.

When they [wise men] saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child ... and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. ~Matthew 2:10-11"

It has been a most unusual, exciting sort of day, and I am looking forward to an equally grand one tomorrow! =)

Merry, Merry, Merry Christmas dear readers!


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Turtledoves ... Two of 'em =)

On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me two turtledoves.
"For hundreds of years, Jewish families used turtledoves as offerings to God. The gift of two turtledoves is a reminder of the sacrifice offered for Jesus by Mary and Joseph. When Jesus was forty days old, they took him to the temple in Jerusalem. They brought a sacrifice of two turtledoves as was required by the law.
Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord ... and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: 'a pair of doves or two young pigeons.' ~ Luke 2:22, 24
{The chocolate was Heid's creativity ;}
Jolly Little Gift-Giver =)
We have had a happy afternoon reading cozy books by the fire, staying dry, watching the rains come down ... it's been a regular duck day, I say! =P
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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Partridges - A Hidden Meaning?

It has always been a puzzlement to me as to why 'My True Love' was so inconsiderately generous ... I mean where is one to store 23 fowls (not including 8 cows!), and 50 surplus people?? That isn't even taking into account that one is responsible to feed them all ...
It wasn't until yesterday evening that my curiosity was satiated, when Mum read to us from a book titled, The Real 12 Days of Christmas
{by Helen Haidle}.
It begins by explaining that in England, sometime during the sixteenth century, any religion, other than the proclaimed state religion, was forbidden. Thus, over the next three centuries, the individuals who refused to adhere to this law developed creative ways to teach the children their beliefs.
The generous benefactor, 'my true love', is referring to God. =)
On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me a partridge in a pear tree.
"The original gift of Christmas is Jesus, sent to earth from God.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son. John 3:16
The partridge was known as a valiant bird, willing to fight to the death in order to defend its young. This bird's readiness to die for its young made it an ancient Christian symbol of Christ. The pear tree represents the cross.
I am the good shepherd...I lay down my life for the sheep. John 10:14-15"
It is my goal to be able to share with you the meaning of each day of Christmas until we reach ... December 25th! ;)

This past weekend was the annual IBLP staff Christmas Conference!
It has ever been a highlight for me. +)
The speakers were incredible, and there were also really awesome people there that I got to see. =D
Tell someone about the true meaning of Christmas - you may be the first person who's ever taken the time to tell them about our magnificent Savior! <3
Happy First Day of Christmas to all!
Post Script - I do apologize for being unable to post last week ... what with a hectic Christmas sche-dual and all, I trust you understand? =) I'm going to make up for it by posting every day until Christmas - highly unusual, I knowr. =P We shall see what transpires!
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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Let GOd

It is my personal opinion that keeping a journal is a good thing to do - write about what made you smile on July 17th, 2008 (I wish I would have, because now I don't remember what happened that day); look back through your journals and chuckle softly to yourself as you observe how your handwriting, punctuation, spelling, and grammar have improved as time has progressed (or, perhaps, not improved =P); but, ultimately, your journal should be a testimony of God's faithfulness - write about how God has transformed your life! Keep an account of how He has lovingly answered your prayers to the letter - share about those times when He didn't necessarily answer them how you hoped He would ... and rejoice, because He had something far greater in store for you. <3
I've been reading some of my journal entries recently and it's incredible how reading something from over a month ago fits the exact need I have - whether it's to be reminded to smile, or to remember that He is always faithful and true.
"There is so much to learn every day ... I love to learn! Sometimes it is difficult; but, God is right there with us. And He delights to see His children hold onto His hand, and embrace the experience, keeping Him at the center."

{This amazing image was given to me by the stellar Evangeline Renee}
I'm always convicted, yet comforted at the same time when I look at the above photograph. Convicted, because I think of all the things/people that I, Sophia, am desperately trying to hold onto - instead of relinquishing them to Jesus, the One whom they rightfully belong. I'm convicted that I need to Let Go ...
Comforted, because I know that He can do unimaginably far greater things with them!
I need - I want - to Let God. <3

I've been having a grand week with Smoo. =)
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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Don't take it for Granite - or was it Granted?

Yes, I always used to think that people said, "Don't take it for granite!"
I was perpetually stupefied - all that my seven year old brain could come up with was, "And don't take it for marble either!" =P
No need for fear, citizens! The word is granted - I know that now. =)

Which ever way you wish to take it, don't take it for granted.
This year has been positively overwhelming in the Department of Blessings Received...sort of resembling last year...annnnd the year before that...and then there was the year before that - I love finding patterns, and there is definitely a pattern going on here, people! Every year, to name all of the blessings that God has given - whatever way, shape, or form they may come in - would be incredibly difficult.
I am thankful for:
New Experiences and Travel to New Places

I am thankful for:
New People
{friends & relatives}
{photo credit - Evangeline Renee}

I am thankful:
For a God Who remains the same Yesterday, Today, and Forever - always loving, always forgiving...always holding onto me.<3

Don't take it for granted, please.
Oh! And Happy Thanksgiving y'all guys!
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Sunday, November 20, 2011

I was tagged ... =)

So, whenever I get emails or notification-thingies telling me that I have to do this hard techy thing - I get all panicked (because I'm not good at doing hard techy things!)! But, really, for the most part, it isn't really hard and techy ... I'm just irrational sometimes. =} So, after I was told by my dear friend, Allie, that it wasn't really that difficult, I was like, "OH! I can do that!" Thusly, here you have it:

Rules: If you are tagged, you must answer the following questions, then tag at least one other blogger (up to three). Notify them by email. If you really don't want to, you simply have to put a link on your blog to mine, and explain that you were tagged, but that you are passing this time.

1: What was the first craft that you remember making?
A knitted scarf - well, it was intended to be a scarf, but it never got that far (it got turned into a chew toy for my kittens ;).

2: What is your preferred craft?
Ohhhh, probably scrap-booking and sewing. =)

3: Who taught you to do that craft?
I really don't claim skill in either one - but, I was inspired to scrap-book and sew by my oldest sister Evy, and me mum taught me how to sew. =)
4:What was the prettiest thing you've ever made?
Harr-harr-harr ... I have a slight propensity to be a perfectionist in some areas - namely crafting - so, quite honestly, there is nothing I have made that I would consider 'pretty'. =P
5: What was the sloppiest thing you’ve ever made (not including very first tries at something)?
A baby blanket for a friend - it was sloppy, because I had to make it in the space of two hours! =P Not my cup o' tea...
6: Who are you going to tag, and email to alert them to their tag?
Hey, have a great week!

Life is Good, because God is Good!
{photo credit: Evangeline Renee}

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Her children will rise up, and call her blessed ...

I love my Mother <3
I do praise the Lord for the blessing she is to me and my family!
She's been through a lot with all of us. ;P
Yet, she still loves us and patiently listens to our trials, lovingly shares her insights, and faithfully keeps us on track. =)
It was Mummy's birthday this past Saturday!
Happy Birthday, Mum! <3

It's been 22 years of marriage
{23 if you round ;}
for my parents, and quite honestly, I can't recall a cross word spoken between them. They are an incredible testimony to me. <3
God is good!
{photo credit: Michaela Potterbaum}

I give her nicknames ... =)
{I like giving those ;}

All six of us children get our brown eyes and brown hair from dearest Mother. =)

This was her birthday pie!

One of her birthday gifts - getting to have Tim, Evy, and Evin up here for an entire week!
{photo credit: Evangeline Renee}
I love you, Mum!!

Sooooo, this weekend, Evy took my senior portraits

{All of the following photos are credited to Evangeline Renee}

Check out her blog for more!
My Buddy! <3

Have a grand day!
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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Blaze Orange - Not for the Faint of ... Stomach

This is one of my Happy Places ... waaaaay up North in Bagley, MN. =)
My Grandma Fredrickson lives there on a farm. It has been my happy privilege for the past four Summers, to spend a month or two with her. And every year in November we all go up there ...

It was a jolly good time of frolicking with cousins and ...

... Hunting the Elusive White Tail!

Doing one of my favorite things, at one of my favorite places. =}
No, that is not My Deer - my cousin, Anthony, bagged this one.
(But somewhere - out there - roaming the forests - is - My Deer)

And yet another one of my cousin's - blessed fellow. ;)
{Heidi was posting with us in the mornings and evenings - but next year, we're letting her loose!}

This is what Dad has grown up doing every year ...
In his element. =)

Ah, the last drive of the day.

Sometimes I wonder why tree stands aren't built a little more - structurally sound?

The Mighty Hunter
(After tearing his ACL in a football incident last year, we were all glad that Anthony could hunt with us this year =)
Our freezers are full, and we'll be having nice warm venison stew this winter. =)

Guess who was waiting for me when I got home??

He is smiling and laughing now!
Three months old tomorrow ... how the time does fly. =O

His first piggy-back ride on Uncle Erik!
I've never seen Erik so willingly tolerate anyone pulling his hair. ;)
(Not to worry - I was holding onto him the entire time =)

Gran came back with us, and got to see her first Great-grandson for the first time!
Life is such a grand adventure!
To say that I enjoy every minute of it would not be true - because sometimes the adventure is not so pleasant; however, by God's grace, I can say that I am grateful for every minute. <3

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

WOW ...

Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow!
There is so much that has happened in the past three weeks ... and 'wow' describes it purrrty well. =)
Three weeks ago last Sunday night, at 8:40-ish p.m., the opportunity arises for me to leave the next morning at 6:30, to go to the UP of MI, and help work in the kitchen at - - - -
The Northwoods!
Wow, so that was grandly random ... I was in a daze the entire night as I make an effort to pack.
Please do not mistake me - I love the Northwoods and Journey ; it's just that I deal best with spontaneity when I can :plan: for it. =}
But, God's ways are much higher than my ways ... and I am so grateful that they are. <3
To discover how God divinely appoints everything is such an adventure and joy!
The entire week was a blessing - the one sad part I remember is that in my dazed state of mind, I forgot to pack my camera. ='( Thusly I have not a one picture from the week.
So, here is a picture of our now completed coat rack!
A book shelf - spray painted + random board found in our back woods - spray painted and cut + plus 50% off decorative knobs from Hobby Lobby + being taught how to use a drill ;) =
another thing that actually got done!! =D
A great thank you to Dad, Andrew, and Evy for helping and inspiring me. =)
{O, S, and H =}
After having a nice wind-down week at home, Olivia and I headed back up to the Northwoods the next week to, once again, help cook for the last young men's Journey of the year.
And this time, I remembered my camera! =)
The Beloved Dish Machine
(I at long last know how to work one now =)

Harr-harr ... I forgot ... the only other unpleasant thing from the first week (beside forgetting my camera) was reenacting one of the ten plagues of Egypt.
Yes, flies.
I loved the flies so much, that I composed a poem in their honor.
~A Fly Observed~
When I gaze upon a fly
I ponder means that I can try,
to swiftly say "Goodbye!"
to inconvenient Mr. Fly.
{these sticky things are my very good friends ;}

Did I mention that I got to work with amazing people the entire week?!
Well, I did. =)
{haha - we wore our EXCEL polos when we cooked for the ALERT guys on the Journey ;}
The Serving Line

Drink more Water!

Very fun!

Amazingness about to happen =)

I have this thing - for oatmeal. =}

Oh, highlight!
We took one of the girls snipe hunting.
That was definitely the hardest I had laughed all month!
Didn't you know that you catch snipes using paper bags full of salt?? ;)

The Anticipation!

And voila! She caught a 'snipe'. =)
She was such a good sport! That made it fun to teach her how to hunt snipe. =)
What grand memories ...

Cody - forever smiling! =)

Annnnd there was a very special birthday while we were up there! Caitlin made an incredible cake, from scratch, and creatively used what we had in the kitchen.
She is increable!

Then home again - back to my people - taking walks. =)

God has been teaching me so much - He is good, and He is my God. <3
Go, take a walk.
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