Sunday, November 30, 2008
Winner of this blog challenge will be receiving this really cool pack of paper from Me and My Big Ideas: Noel Collection and one other surprise!I hope this paper pack will inspire you to do a really cool Christmas (or winter =]) project. I got a pack for myself and will be using some of it for my Days of December album. Here are some pics that I took of my pack.
Don't forget to come and comment on my December 1 blog post to let me know that you participated. Great job everybody!
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Okay, it's not so much the 27 cents itself that I am thankful for, but for what it represents. Yesterday, my church family surprised me with a birthday celebration. Since my birthday was last Tuesday, this really caught me off guard. I received some very lovely gifts from my dear friends. The children in the nursery (toddler age) each came out and gave me a balloon. The Sunday School children brought me notes and flowers...it was overwhelming really.
It wasn't until everyone was gone and we were packing up to go home that I decided to sit down and look at my cards and read the notes the children gave me. Well, one of the notes kind of jingled when I picked it up. Hmmm... I wondered what it could be. It was a business size envelope and inside there was a note that was folded in every which way and then I saw what made the noise. A quarter and two pennies.
I was immediately moved to tears. This young man is about 6 or maybe 7 years old. He is one of the sweetest young men you will ever meet. In his note he had drawn a picture of my family and he wrote all kinds of sweet things on it. I knew that this boy had given me his all with all of his heart. As I thought about it some more today, I was immediately humbled to know this kind of love. He really had a look of joy on his face when he gave me this gift. My thoughts flew to the gifts that I've given in the past. Was I giving out of pure love or was I hoping for something in return? Did I give my all when I was able to, or did I selfishly hold back? I need to realize that I am truly blessed in many ways. I don't have to be afraid to give. God always takes care of me and my family.
With the holidays just around the corner - what will your attitude be? Will you give it all? Will you trust and not be afraid to let go? This is not just about money and material things. Will you trust yourself to open your heart to your friends and loved ones? Will you give them another chance that maybe, they don't deserve? Will you step out of your comfort zone and witness to someone if the opportunity arises? Give freely. Material things, time, your friendship... don't hold back. You won't regret it.
I got tagged by my friend Carrie...read to the end to see if you've been tagged by me!
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper! I love the giant rolls of thick paper from Costco. I get the over-priced ribbon that matches and then go to town on making them as beautiful as possible. =]
2. Real tree or Artificial? Well, I used to be a die-hard "natural tree only" kind of gal. However, since living in So. CA I have become less and less enchanted with real trees, because it is so hard to find one that looks decent and is not brown by December 26. Seriously. So, I saved and saved and plunked down a pretty penny to get a very nice artificial one from Costco. It looks very realistic, but without the fire hazard!
3. When do you put up the tree? As soon after Thanksgiving Day as I can.
4. When do you take the tree down? Usually the first week of January or so.
5. Do you like eggnog? I've read many other answers of "Yes, the non-alcholic kind"...I didn't even know eggnog had alcohol in it. I have only had the kind from the carton or jug. LOL I do love it though... =]
6. Favorite gift received as a child? My favorite gift would have to be my stereo when I was about 13. It even had removable speakers so you could get a slight surround sound feel...LOL I really thought I was cool...yeah...I think it was 1983
7. Hardest person to buy for? Usually it's for my mother or Marco.
8. Easiest person to buy for? My sisters. They just tell you straight out what they need/want. LOL
9. Do you have a nativity scene? I have one very small one and really would like to get a big one soon.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail!
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? One year, I was in a gift exchange at church. Someone had wrapped up some salts and seasonings for making dehydrated meat like jerky. You were supposed to use it with a machine of some sort. Seriously people? I took it to Wal Mart and got back almost $5 for it. Hmph.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? Elf, A Christmas Story, and Charlie Brown Christmas.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Ugh. Every year, I swear that I will shop throughout the year and stock up and have a stress-free shopping part of Christmas. Does it ever work out that way? No. Why? Because I always end up giving the gifts away before Christmas. I can't help it. =]
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? I am sure that I have.
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? I love the whole she-bang. Are you surprised? =]
16. Lights on the tree? Yes. I love lights. I'd have a jillion on the tree if I could do it without risking a house fire. =]
17. Favorite Christmas song? O Holy Night and Mary, Did You Know?
18. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? We have traveled at Christmas...very long drives to Washington, but I prefer to stay at home and have everyone come to us. ;]
19. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeers? Of course - I can even sing them.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? We have a star, but I like Carrie's idea of a crown of thorns. I've never heard of that. Great reminder - of course that is what the star reminds us of as well.
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? We have let the kids open one gift when we've had family over that has that tradition, but normally we wait until morning. Stockings get opened (or looked through) first!
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? When people start discussing all the nasty parts of Christmas and how annoying things are and how they don't like blah blah blah. I don't like negativity in general, but at Christmas, it just bursts my happy Christmas bubble! :)
(kept this exactly as Carrie wrote it - I couldn't agree more.) ALSO, I can't stand it that people are afraid to say Merry CHRISTmas anymore. I don't do Happy Holidays. I wouldn't be offended if someone did wish me a Happy Hannukah or Kwanza or whatever, but from me? You're getting a Merry CHRISTmas. =]
23. What theme or color are you using? We have an anything goes attitude. I love putting out all the hand-made Christmas things from my children and my siblings. I love hand-made and store-bought items.
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? I miss my dad's turkey and gravy. I miss my grandmother's creamed corn...mmmmm....
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? I do not have anything in particular in mind. I have been eyeing a special item at Michael's, but I am hoping I will have enough birthday money and gift cards to cover that (if it goes on sale)...a nice purse would be cool...more scrapbook stuff never hurt anybody....I like Carrie's idea of a mother's ring, too.
Okay...I am going to tag: Hannah, Tabitha, and Shirley (I left my other siblings for Tabi to tag. ;])
Go to Peggy's blog for more Simple Woman's Daybooks
FOR TODAY ...November 24th
Outside my window... the sun is just peeking it's way through the dark shadows and I can hear my two pups rustling around as day breaks.
I am thinking... about my busy schedule this week.
I am thankful for...the chance to spend time with family and friends.
From the learning rooms...a few Thanksgiving crafts, lots of math to be completed by both girls and some writing that needs to be tackled...
From the kitchen...chicken breast is as far as I've gotten... LOL
I am wearing... my flannel p.j.'s ("passion killers" says my friend Miriam =]) and a robe
I am creating... another Quince album for a young lady in my church.
I am going... to be running lots of errands today...haven't shopped for my 2 Thanksgiving dinners! Yikes!
I am reading...The Gift of a Letter by Alexandra Stoddard...I am hoping to revive my love for good 'ole fashioned correspondence
I am hoping...that I get a good deal on the things I need and that I stay with the plan I have written down. =]
I am hearing... a new Christmas CD that my hubby got me for my birthday... Josh Groban's "Noel"
Around the house... I have piles of books to be put away or marked for reading, some laundry to be done and some cleaning to do.
One of my favorite things...is my church family. They spoiled me yesterday with a surprise birthday celebration and I am still smiling at the thought of all the love they expressed for me.
A few plans for the rest of the week: Well, today I've got a full day of errands and shopping, a Thanksgiving service to attend tomorrow, Thanksgiving dinner at our church on Wednesday, Thanksgiving at my house Thursday, hoping to get to Michael's early on Black Friday for something special, scrapbooking on Saturday at a friend's house and in the Lord's house on Sunday!
Here is picture thought I am sharing...
Sunday, November 23, 2008
...my blog readers! Yes, that's YOU! I started this blog so that I would have an outlet when I wanted to just "write" or share pictures or share my feelings...I didn't care whether anyone commented or read...I just needed this place to "be".
Now that I have had it for a while, I can honestly say that I do love the comments and I am interested in my readers feedback.
It is my hope that you come here to know me more. =] So, please - leave a comment and make sure that you have your name with it! I often have an anonymous commenter that lets us know that they love us or miss us...but I don't know who you are. =[
Have a great evening...be grateful...we all have so much. God bless you!
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
2. What I look forward to most on Thanksgiving is the Macy's Thanksgiving parade, getting together with family and my mother-in-law's turkey. (if you don't celebrate thanksgiving, insert your favorite holiday)
3. My Christmas/holiday shopping is started.
4. Thoughts of the Twilight movie fill my head.
5. I wish I could wear skinny jeans...LOL...not really....hmmm...a smaller size.
6. Bagpipes remind me of the song Amazing Grace and men wearing skirts.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to some rest and relaxation, tomorrow my plans include a church yard sale and Sunday, I want to enjoy some time with my family and friends!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I feel like we have gotten closer in our relationship, but we are farther apart in distance. Not only do I love my siblings, but I also love their families. My SIL Kim is like one of the sisters, as far as I'm concerned. My BIL Miguel is someone who is a wonderful father and husband. I haven't had a chance to really get to know P.J. or Clint, but I know they are great guys. Don't even get me started on my nieces and nephews. They are all adorable and very smart. =]
Recently, my siblings and I have started a photo blog. None of us are professional photographers, we don't even have a fancy camera in the whole lot of us, but we thought it'd be cool to share a picture a week with each other and the blogging world. We post a new set every Friday. Check us out by clicking here. QUINTESSENTIAL
Love you guys!!
My sister-in-law and friend...Kim
Pink: Esther Yellow: Deborah White: Tabitha
Red Tie: Ondray Printed Shirt: Me =]
Allexia (Ondray and Kim's) Logan (Ondray and Kim's)
Abby (Esther's) Lucas(Ondray and Kim's) Naomi (mine)
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Today, I use my camera to capture moments that I want to remember of my children, my family, and everyday inspiration.
One day, I may even take some classes or learn what all the settings are on my camera. LOL Until then, I will just let my family and friends think that I am the paparazzi! =]
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
These pictures were taken tonight as we celebrated my birthday together. These people are my life.
My youngest...my big guy...
My three silly girls...I could cry just thinking of how they've made me a better person.
Monday, November 17, 2008
7And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Outside my window... it is already warm. There is a strong smell of ashes and soot. The OC fires are not that far away.
I am thinking... about the funeral that I am preparing to go to today. My heart hurts and I am feeling anxious.
I am thankful for... my little Taryn that woke up and right away saw me and offered to make me a cup of coffee.
From the learning rooms...the girls will be taking a break today because they are going to spend the day with their grandparents.
From the kitchen... it will stay clean for now - we will be away most of the day and evening.
I am wearing... my tan and orange floral p.j.'s. No socks or slippers - it is hot this morning already!
I am creating... a scrapbook for someone's Quincenera and for a couple that recently got married.
I am going... to a funeral today for my dear friend Sally.
I am hoping... that I can be a help to the family today.
I am hearing...the sound of my children starting to stir for the day.
Around the house...things still need to be picked up. We had a party here Saturday evening and still have not had time to get things back in order
One of my favorite things...the new Caramel Apple creamer I bought for my coffee...Desi says it would taste great in hot chocolate for you non-coffee drinkers. =]
A few plans for the rest of the week: Dinner tonight with some friends, Open House at the girls school tomorrow, progressive dinner with the youth group on Friday and church yard sale on Saturday.
Here is picture thought I am sharing...
Sunday, November 16, 2008
With thanksgiving around the corner, some people may want to start or share this tradition or way of remembering how truly blessed we are.
At each table setting, place 5 kernels of corn. Then share this story with your guests once they are seated at the table.
On November 11, 1620, the Mayflower dropped anchor in a natural harbor on the inside of the northern tip of Cape Cod. There it stayed. The location was not the Pilgrims’ first choice; they had planned to settle near the mouth of the Hudson.
The area where the ship made landfall had belonged to the Patuxets, a fierce tribe that took intense delight in murdering anyone who would dare invade their territory. A sickness, however, had wiped them out, leaving their land free for the taking. (Other Indians, fearing “bad spirits,” would have no part of it.) The Pilgrims didn’t even have to clear fields for planting. They were alread there for them.
The nearest neighbors were the Wampanoags, a civilized tribe ruled by Massasoit. The chief and his people accepted the Pilgrims and helped them. Squanto, a lone survivor of the Patuxets, made his home with this new inhabitants and taught them how to survive in this new and challenging land.
Although the bounty of the summer of 1621 brought a time of heartfelt gratitude (the first Thanskgiving), the Pilgrims’ obligation to repay the backers who had financed their voyage left them dangerously close to starvation. Food stores had all but disappeared.
At one point, a daily ration of food for a Pilgrim was 5 kernels of corn. With a simple faith that God would sustain them, no matter what, they pulled through. History records that not a single one of them died from starvation that winter. Not a one.
The harvest of 1623 brought a surplus of corn, so much that the Pilgrims were able to help out the Indians for a change. So joyous were they that they celebrated a second Day of Thanksgiving and again invited Massasoit to be their guest.
He came, bringing with him his wife, several other chiefs and 120 braves. All sat down to a feast of 12 venison, 6 goats, 50 hogs and pigs, numerous turkeys, vegtables, grapes, nuts, plums, puddings and pies. But, lest anyone forget, all were given their first course on an empty plate.
They were each given 5 kernels of corn.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
The Walkers...Naomi, Junko, and Raena
My dear friend Michelle
Super-Awesome friend Desiree
Crazy friends Cindy, Danielle and Michelle
Friday, November 14, 2008
1. Please feel free to leave me a comment and leave your name so I know you stopped by!
2. When I buy a new book I can't help sniffing it occasionally.
3. My favorite thing to cook is chicken taquitos.
4. Hugs and kisses from my children and my husband is something I can't get enough of.
5. That's the thing I love most about family.
6. Young girls and women that use foul language out loud and in public always makes me think to myself, what the heck?
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to taking Taryn to cheer practice and getting ready for her party, tomorrow my plans include cooking a ton of taquitos and celebrating Taryn's 9th birthday and Sunday, I want to spend time with my family in the house of the Lord, have a great lunch together and take a Sunday nap (those are always so nice)!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Okay. Dropped the girls off for school and headed out to see the newly renovated Michael's. Desi said it was really nice and I had to see for myself. She was right. I got a very nice arrangement for 80% off!
I decided to drive thru downtown Riverside on the way home. They are starting their decorating for the Mission Inn's famous Festival of Lights.
This was on one of the walls. I've never noticed these faces before. Kinda startled me!
There are lots of historic buildings downtown like this old church.
Had to send some stuff to South Carolina!
Naomi picked out some Dora the Explorer stickers in the $1 section at Michael's. She wanted to "scrapbook" with me. So, I made a little album out of construction paper for her.
Marco taking a break right after work with his "Big Guy". Will be getting ready to leave soon and go to his other job - church.
Practice does not make perfect, in my opinion, practice makes permanent. So, here's Taryn - getting ready for Open House next week.
Hannah decides to play a bit for us as well.
Here is my best friend doing the job he loves most. Ministering to the people at our church.
I was catching up on some blog reading and this was the word capture that I had to type in to leave a comment on someone's blog. I thought it was pretty fitting. =D