Friday, January 15, 2016


I just changed out of my clothes...from yesterday. So gross. But I fell asleep on the sofa. Then I had to get my big guys out the door early for the church ski trip. Then I accidentally fell asleep and didn't wake up until...LATE. By the time we did school and it was graded and reviewed (I am moving at a snail's pace because the last 6 weeks have been nonstop)it was 5:30!! My upgrade from 2 day old clothes was one of Andy's sweatshirts and my fat jeans. Winning.
*No picture included

Thursday, January 07, 2016

My word

I have no idea how an entire week has slipped by in this new year already. This week has been extremely busy, each day with many things left undone. And we are looking ahead to two weekends in a row with a full calendar and a major house project in the works. Needless to say, my exercise and house-keeping goals are NOT off to the best start.  But I have been in prayer that God would use my time as He sees fit. I have already in the seven days of 2016 had phone calls from friends who need help, been able to offer our home for a retirement celebration and small group gathering, and hosted friends.  I have had coffee with a Mom who needed advise and had some really rich conversations with my children. I feel like God is keeping me busy with the people under my roof and those outside my family. This is a beautiful thing. So all is well.

In the rush of it all, I haven't recorded my word for 2016.  It is CELEBRATE. I hope, in all the days and circumstances of this upcoming year, to celebrate the Lord's goodness and faithfulness.  I have found that a life of celebration is always possible and when I am willing to embrace it life is rich and good.  I look forward to looking for opportunities to celebrate, both the special and mundane, all year.

Here are my words from previous years:


Psalm 118:24
"This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it."
Proverbs 15:15
"All the days of the afflicted are evil, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast."

Saturday, January 02, 2016

A change of heart

January is so lovely. I used to absolutely hate this month. I grew up with happy Christmases. My parents loved us and loved each other. My Dad is a gift-giver. And our grandparents really enjoyed us and were always so happy to have us in their home. If holidays made them feel tired or weary, we never knew it. They hosted all of our holidays until I was beyond high school. We were so blessed with so much love and happiness during Christmas time.

So naturally, when it was all over I felt so pitiful. January was the dreaded month. All the Christmas décor came down (my Dad would even use our tree for firewood which would break my heart), the parties were over, and there were no birthdays until April. I hated winter once Christmas was over, and with good reason.
But eventually I grew up and now have three beautiful children of my own. I absolutely love Christmas still. Some years my husband and I host Christmas and/or Thanksgiving and always Easter. We have our own family traditions and parties, too. There are shows, crafts, and baking projects that are yearly traditions. And when it is all over, I am so sad. But unlike recent years past, I long for January.
I have just in the last few years realized that January is the sweet month of quiet and calm. The twinkly nostalgic Christmas tree is put at the curb. But it is replaced with winter décor... snowy, white, peaceful- which are such gifts for me in this stage of life. I am so thrilled for January this year. What made me so desperately sad in earlier years- no holidays or birthdays- thrills my soul now. I strive to make Christmas time full and magical. We make messes, attend every party, and always go a little over budget and stay up late. We watch Christmas movies, drink hot cocoa, read our beautiful books and devotions, sing and celebrate until I am exhausted. Then comes January and my body longs for the restoration it will bring!

I am so excited to get back to the rhythm of our usual days again. Chore lists? Yes! Resolutions? Love them! Lists of books to read? Squeal!  A new calendar that does not have events written in every day and along the margins? Yes, please. It's all so slow and good.
When the children sigh and groan, maybe even shedding a tear or two, at the end of the Christmas season I whisper with confidence, "Christmas comes back every year!  It's not a once in a lifetime event!" And they begin counting the days...363, and so on. They can hardly wait for the month of endless treats and events. They haven't found any appreciation for January yet. Probably won't until they are much older.

One of the greatest joys I have in knowing Jesus is that there is ALWAYS SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO! The joys never end. Even in death itself there is life! Every season possesses beautiful gifts if we mean to find them. Including dreary, cold, boring January!

*List of things to love about winter from a few years ago when I still dreaded it!
*Something I want to make on a cold, dreary day coming soon!