Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 89

FOR TODAY: December 27, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...the snow covered on my parents' front lawn.

I am thinking...it is a good day for a drive which is a good thing because the whole family is about ready to hop in the car for a five and a half hours drive to see the Stewart side of the family.

I am thankful for...my sister who wrote a letter to Santa asking him to wait to deliver gifts till I could be with the family.

I am wearing...jeans, a red shirt, peas in a pod earrings and a Santa hat.

I am creating...a citron (knit shawl).

I am going...to Grandma's house, first we're going to David's for Christmas dinner then to Grandma's house.

I am reading...On Writing by Steven King.

I am wondering...why if my tummy is up set or just hungry.

I am hoping...that I am not getting sick.

I am looking forward to...seeing all of the Stewart and Willson families over the next few days.

I am hearing...my sister calling for my mom, my dad asking questions about my new gps TomTom, and the clock chiming.

Around the house...I'm not going to think about it till I get home.

I am pondering...about the NaNo novel I wrote in 2008. I was talking to my Aunt last night and the story came up. I forgot how much I liked the story and how much potential it had.

One of my favorite things...boterkoek (Dutch butter cake).

A few plans for the rest of the week: driving to Hamilton today, Stewart Christmas dinner tonight, hanging with the Stewarts tomorrow, visiting a friend tomorrow night, Willson Christmas lunch Thursday, diving back to my parent's Friday and supper with Aunt Beth, and then flying back home on Saturday arriving just in time for the Van Meekeren's board games New Year's Eve party.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Advent 2011: Joy & Love

The days have been zooming by. I blinked, missed a two Sundays of Advent, and Christmas was here. Where did the days go....It's Christmas already. It has been a busy three weeks but also very good days. These days have been filled with joy (third Sunday of Advent) and love (fourth Sunday of Advent). And it has been wonderful. There have been hiccups, bumps, and even dips into despair from my car being out of commission for five days to just feeling overwhelmed and lonely this last week. And in all of that it has still been good. I am blessed and loved.

In a few hours I'll be flying home, I'm almost able to think about it (if I let myself get too excited before everything here was done my head would "check-out" and I would not have been able to focus on the important things here). It is going to be an awesomely grand week with my family. Lee-Ann (my 11 year old sister) wrote a letter to Santa explaining that I would not be arriving till today so could he please wait to deliver the gifts till tonight so we could all open them tomorrow as if it was Christmas, she doesn't mind waiting. My sister is the sweetest bestest sister! I love her muchly! I hope your days are equally bright and full of hope, peace, joy and love.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 88

FOR TODAY: December 20, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...heavy grey clouds that look full of snow.

I am thinking...about home. Only five sleeps till I see my family!

I am thankful for...my church family.

I am wearing...jeans, Beauty Will Rise a Steven Curtis Chapman concert t-shirt, green hoodie, and tinker bell earrings.

I am creating...Christmas presents.

I am going...to have a quiet night either board games with friends or home packing and preparing for Christmas.

I am reading...nothing really. I finished The Soprano Sorceress last night. There a few books I could start but not really sure which one I'll read next.

I am wondering...why I'm feeling so off even though all the rush and big things have been accomplished. This next week is suppose to be light and relaxing and it is. I just don't feel relaxed.

I am hoping...to get some letters written.

I am looking forward to...Christmas caroling.

I am hearing...the computer.

Around the house...are good.

I am pondering...the phrase "there is a God shaped hole in all of us".

One of my favorite things...visits with friends.

A few plans for the rest of the week: boardgames, caroling, Christmas Eve services, Christmas Eve sleepover, and my Christmas Day flight home.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Christmas Parties

Tonight was the youth group's Christmas party. There was games, laughter, music, gifts, food, music, and this video...

It was a good night and I am thankful for that.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Simple Woman Daybook 87

FOR TODAY: December 13, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...dusk, it gets dark so early.

I am thinking...I have to start telling people about the mission trip I'm going on.

I am thankful for...the girls.

I am wearing...jeans, tinker bell t-shirt over a long sleeve shirt, and tinker bell earrings.

I am creating...gifts

I am going...I was planning on going to a card making workshop tonight but that depends on the car situation. The part didn't come in today so I'm heading to the car dealership to see if they have a solution for me.

I am reading...The Soprano Sorceress by L. E. Modesitt

I am wondering...what all I still have on my to do list.

I am hoping...to have car soon.

I am looking forward to...the youth group Christmas Party

I am hearing...questions.

Around the house...things are getting done and Christmas is going up.

I am pondering...do I have food at home to make supper

One of my favorite things...pretty toes.

A few plans for the rest of the week: Stampin Up Christmas card making (tonight), Christmas cookie baking with Kimberly & Life Group (Wednesday), Ugly Christmas Sweater Party for the youth group (Thursday), Christmas party (Friday), Dress Rehersal (Saturday), children's Christmas musical in both services (Sunday), and a long winter's nap on Monday.

Friday, December 09, 2011

December 9's Friday 5

Today's Friday 5 theme is "toppings":
  1. What’s your favorite ice cream topping?
    Hot Fudge
  2. What’s your favorite pizza topping?
    Bacon
  3. What’s your favorite thing to sprinkle cocoa powder on?
    I have never tried cocoa powder...hmmm, sounds yummy
  4. What’s your favorite thing to put whipped cream on?
    Hot Chocolate
  5. What do you like to put upon a cracker?
    Cheese

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Jon

I am thankful for...

Jon Dixion

Jon is the youth and children's pastor at another church in the area. Since I moved here, five years ago -wow it's been five years, Jon has been a great friend, mentor, and supporter. Every few months we get together for coffee. We talk about what's new in our ministries, what is working, and what is needing improvements. We bounce ideas each other and suggest resources. I always leave inspired. I am thankful for all this suggestions, chats, and ideas.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Advent 2011: Peace

Have you ever needed a Christmas tree decorated quickly? I have a solution -relay race. Yes, a massive tree decorating relay race with 24 children. It is chaotic but hilarious to watch. The kids loved the game Sunday and the aesthetic results are decent(minus a child being accidentally & temporarily being tied/tangled to a tree with garland).

Standing in the middle of a blur of children, lights, ornaments, filled me with joy and peace...which is crazy. December has become associated with same same rush and pressure the kids were under in the race. It is all hustle and bustle. There are gifts to buy, food to prepare, cards to send, trees to trim, halls to deck, and so many events to attend. There are concerts, parades, musicals, special services, office parties, club parties, cookie exchanges, craft days and community celebrations. It is to do list is worst if you are volunteering or involved in behind the scenes because you have added meetings, rehearsals, practices, preparations, setting up, recruiting helpers, and clean up. I love the season but it can get a little overwhelming. Christmas can be chaotic.

The first sermon I ever wrote was about living at peace in the midst of chaos. I looked at Matthew 11:28-30, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30). True peace is not the absence of chaos but the discovering of how to be at rest in the midst of storms. I have a great story that goes with this...but I can't find it. I believe it is by Katherine Marshall but that doesn't help. I'm not going to stress about it, I'm going to go eat supper.

This past Sunday we lit the candle of Peace.

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God,
Everlasting Father,
Prince of Peace.
-Isaiah 9:6

The Simple Woman Daybook 86

FOR TODAY: December 6, 2011
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...the blinds are closed to stop the glare off the computer.

I am thinking...about writing group, Christmas schedules, the up coming children's Christmas musical, and "safe" places I could have put the things I am missing.

I am thankful for...my writing group.

From the kitchen...is a mess that must be dealt with tonight. I can no longer push "editing" issues off till December because December is here...and the pile of dishes is too high.

I am wearing...A black t-shirt with a formal black skirt (which I normally reserve for Sundays) laundry is another important life element that must be taken care of tonight.

I am creating...since I'm letting the novel "breath" (I actually found that term in an article on how to edit your novel) I'm back to knitting a shawl and debating finishing the baby blanket. There are also Christmas cards to make at some point.

I am going...for lunch

I am reading...The Soprano Sorceress by L. E. Modesitt

I am wondering...what the difference between thinking, wondering, and pondering is and why all three are in the daybook. I realized today that I was missing a few simple woman categorizes wondering and pondering were two of them (I added all the "new" ones).

I am hoping...to be productive.

I am looking forward to...the church's Christmas banquet.

I am hearing...the distant murmur of people talking.

Around the house...much to do.

I am pondering...world construction for my novel.

One of my favorite things...the Golden Apple.

A few plans for the rest of the week: cleaning the apartment, open mic, youth group, play practices, church banquet, church, Christmas card making craft day, a celebrating a friends birthday, and the last writing group meeting of 2011.

A picture to share...
The Golden Apple

Friday, December 02, 2011

December 2's Friday 5

The Friday 5 theme is "BRRRR!":
  1. What’s your favorite thing about cold weather?
    Outdoor activities like skiing or sledding.
  2. Soups and hot beverages seem to be everyone’s favorite cold-weather culinary combatant, but what’s another food that seems to take the bite out of the cold?
    Grill cheese sandwiches.
  3. When the weather is just starting to turn cold but is not yet in full frigidity, what do you add to your bed until it’s time to break out the heavy artillery?
    Afghans.
  4. What household chore seems especially unkind in these colder months?
    Laundry since I have to leave the house to get to the laundry room.
  5. Among people you know, who seems most oblivious to cold weather?
    Zach

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Thankful Thursday -Chris Baty

I am thankful for...
Chris Baty

We have never met, never chatted, never exchanged emails (unless you count mass emails) but I am thankful for Chris Baty. In the summer of 1999, Baty had a crazy idea that it would be possible to write a novel in 30 days. 21 people participate. The next year they moved the project to November "to more fully take advantage of the miserable weather" And that was the start of National Novel Writing Month.

I discovered NaNoWriMo in the summer of 2007. I have participated every year since then. This high vilocity write by the seat of your pants approach to writing has added creativity and joy to my past five Novembers. The experience has always been rewarding even in the most stressful moments. I am thankful to Chris Baty for creating this writing challenge and community. I am thankful for his pep talks and inspirational videos every year. And I am thankful that because of him Best Word exists and I have met some great writers and amazing friends.

Yay for Chris Baty!
Some Great Chris Baty-ism:
“The biggest thing separating people from their artistic ambitions is not a lack of talent. It's the lack of a DEADLINE."

"The quickest, easiest way to produce something beautiful and lasting is to risk making something horribly crappy.”

“The world is a lot more fun when you approach it with an exuberant imperfection.”

“There's an old folk saying that goes: whenever you delete a sentence from your NaNoWriMo novel, a NaNoWriMo angel loses its wings and plummets, screaming, to the ground. Where it will likely require medical attention.

"The world needs your novel"