One last Christmas picture while it's still 2006....
I did get my ornaments finished! I tried several different things for the top and finally settled on the ribbon bow hanger. I'm quite pleased with them!
And in fact, I actually went to my knit group last night at the coffee shop - woohoo! It's been three loooong months since I've been able to go and I feel like a new woman. :) I had a childlike glee last night and kept wanting to jump up and down in my chair clapping my hands and saying "I'm here, I'm here, I'm here - oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!!!" Had such a nice time and it just seemed so normal.
The picture of Keith and Joe was taken during our family Christmas on Saturday. James, Loni and Xena got Joe some Sizzlin' Bacon and Chicken Barbecue flavored bubbles! Joe and Xena both had a lot of fun chasing bubbles and eating them and as you can see in the picture Joe was perfectly happy licking the bubble wand.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. - 2 Corinthians 5:10
Right now he's pretty irritated at us as we have rocked his kitty world by putting presents under the tree. He's lost his favorite sleeping spot to a bunch of boxes and he's taking it pretty hard.
But he doesn't just enjoy sleeping under the tree...he also finds chewing on the tree highly amusing. And the vision of a certain cat in the movie Christmas Vacation always comes to mind. So we don't leave the tree lights on when we're not around - just in case you know.
My Beloved and I have been off work all week and have thoroughly enjoyed it. We've done some serious Christmas shopping, some leisurely walking around shopping and following these, some lazy napping. It's nice to be able to face all the holiday "to do" lists without the accompanying frenzied feeling.
We now have the tree decorated and the garland and lights up in the living room. The glow of the lights on the panelling is just such a warm feeling. Very late last night I sat in the living room with only the glow of the Christmas lights and was struck by how beautiful it was. I almost went to get the camera and take a picture, but then I realized that it wasn't really a photo of the lights that I wanted. What I truly desired was to totally capture that moment in time and place it in a very special place to be brought out any time I might need to feel comforted. The beauty of the twinkling lights and the peace in that room was so perfect.
I just sat for some time reflecting and praising. It was almost like time stopped and there really was nothing else I felt I must do right then other than what I was doing. Shortly thereafter the dog came in and sat at my feet and the cat came and sat on my lap, purring his contentment as well.
These are the stolen moments of time that make all the running around worthwhile. May we all have moments that are this special sprinkled throughout the craziness of our day to day lives.
While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. - Luke 2:6-7
Besides some boring things I accomplished - some laundry, picking up, etc. - I finished my glitter ornaments. These were so easy to make and are sitting in their little box just filled with bling. All they need now is a coordinating jaunty bow at the top and they will be finished.
One such visit was this morning. Dawn and I have been looking forward to the movie The Holiday since the movie trailers first started appearing on tv and today was the big day. She came to pick me up this morning and had to come in first to bring a treat to Joe. I suppose that might have just a little to do with why he's happy to see my friends!
When we pulled into the theater parking lot we had a bit of a surprise and then lots of laughing - the parking lot was virtually deserted and this NEVER happens! Of course, we were seeing the 10:25 showing and I guess that one doesn't have a big turnout. Dawn did point out that perhaps we could get the senior citizen early bird special that early, which would have been nice considering how costly movies have become. Or how "old" I'm becoming to start noticing that sort of thing!
The movie was wonderful and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think one thing that I loved was my lack of embarrassment over "those kinds of scenes" if you know what I mean. At one point the couple on screen were talking about...um...hitting the sheets and the next thing you saw it was the next morning - woohoo! I do not need to see every detail of that sort of thing plastered on the 40 foot movie screen!Gratitudes
For the Lord loves the just and will not forsake His faithful ones. - Psalm 37:28
Today was my first day back to work since my shoulder surgery. I had been cautioned that it would be difficult, but I don't think I realized just how tough it would be. My arm hurt, I was tired and I started getting very down again. Then it hit me that we do not have to face these things alone, even when we feel very lonely. Not only do I have a loving God to turn to, I have Christian girlfriends that I can always count on for prayers. I hesitated to ask for prayer at first because it just seemed like such a silly reason. But I swallowed my pride and sent an email, then went out to my car and took a nap for my lunch. When I came back in there were some very warm and loving emails waiting for me. How honored and humbled I felt to have these wonderful women praying for me.
And the afternoon did start getting better. One of the coolest things is that I (?) suddenly realized that if I would raise my chair then my arm wouldn't be resting on my desk at such an odd angle and wouldn't hurt so much. Again I'm going to use my grandmother's quote - "It's not odd, it's God!" The power of prayer is awesome indeed.
I do know that we feel the most vulnerable when we are tired and hurting and that's when Satan reaches in to get a foothold. As time passes and my shoulder continues to heal and I get more used to the work routine I know it will get easier for me. And knowing that I have friends that are praying for me makes it even better.
1. Friends and loved ones that care enough to listen, really listen.
2. Grandbabies-to-be! I got to see the ultrasound picture today of that precious baby.
3. Thankful that even with as much as my shoulder is hurting, that we have modern medicine and surgeons that are able to fix things.
Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. - Hebrews 4:16
I followed this link from somebody's blog and discovered that I am Sunrise. I don't know how accurate the description is, but I do know that I most definitely am a morning person and really enjoy the opportunity to witness a sunrise.
|You Are Sunrise|
And since Monday has always been my favorite day of the week, it just seemed fitting to start fresh with my renewed attitude and joy. It is so comforting to know that when we are hurting we can turn to the Lord and get our focus back and our feet headed in the right direction again.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." - Proverbs 3:5-6
Sometimes it can be difficult to humble ourselves and ask for help and forgiveness. I find this to be especially true of women in the regard that we tend to be "fixers" and want to make things better. And when I think of the many things the Lord has to take care of it can almost feel trivial to ask for His help. But that is so what He wants us to do. The contentment I felt this morning after prayer and Bible reading was enormous.
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened." - Matthew 7:7-8
1. Having the Holy Bible readily available in our country to turn to when we have questions.
2. Early morning quiet time.
3. Beautiful fall leaves and gentle, cool breezes.
"Gratitude is born in hearts that take time to count up past mercies." - Charles Edward Jefferson
I've heard explanations having to do with the temperature and amount of rainfall. But I believe it is a sign of God's great love to give us this gift of beauty. For to look at the splendid colors on display truly is a gift, as long as we slow our busy lives down enough to see and appreciate it.
As an aside - the surgery went well and I am in an immobilizer sling for four weeks, which translates to one handed typing. :)
The rarest Autumn morning,
of leaves set all ablaze.
The mildest touch of sunlight,
amid the Autumn haze.
The booted feet of daybreak,
falling to the ground,
The cool clear air a stirring,
God's poetry profound.
One of the things we found most interesting is the difference in basketball and hockey games. Hockey games are famous for the player fights, but I gotta say that basketball in general has some really fired up fans, players and coaches. It was fast paced, loud and FUN! We will most definitely go again, though I doubt we'll be able to afford tickets in the same place.
And on the way to the game I-35 came to an absolute stop headed into downtown. Five lanes of traffic stopped behind some police cars parked across the highway. We quickly switched radio stations and discovered that President Bush had just landed at the airport and was on the way to another arena downtown, so I guess they were clearing the way for him. So far I think this might be the closest I've ever been to a President! :)
2 days until surgery and I can't wait. I am so ready to get this arm taken care of and start healing!
My tongue will speak of your righteousness and of your praises all day long. - Psalm 35:28
Early Sunday morning we got on the road to Texas Motor Speedway. On the way a friend called and was already at the track. I of course had to give her a hard time and tell her that MY driver would beat HER driver in the race. Alas, her driver won and I did call later to congratulate her.....and eat a little bit of crow!
One of the best parts of this sort of thing is watching people. TMS is the largest Nascar venue and holds 200,000 people! With that said I will add that this race didn't have that many as I saw the two end sections of the back stretch had no people. Regardless, that's a lot of people. The photo above was a trailer on the midway for one of the most popular drivers, Will Farrell as Ricky Bobby! It really tickled us to watch people start laughing when they saw who was on the trailer.
The first few laps with the pace car featured Terry Labonte in his car and his son Justin driving the car that Terry won his first championship in! This race is Terry's last, so many a tribute was given.
We had great seats and even though Tony Stewart (admittedly one of my favorite drivers) beat Jr (our personal favorite), it was a great race.
We got home last night at almost 10:00 and were very pooped pups! And speaking of pups, Joe was very glad to see us as he did not get to go. He hardly ate while we were gone and Lynne' said he stayed in his crate and pouted the entire time! ;)
And only 3 days until surgery - woohoo!
We had a really nice time at the shower and got to see the twin boys, who are just starting to eat solid foods now. They are such beautiful babies and seemingly didn't mind the crowd of people or the being passed around at all!
The nine patch quilts were also made by mom - one for each of the twins. When my cousin opened them she immediately put them on the floor and had the boys on them! Mom also used her embroidery machien on these quilts and put the boys' name on the back of each one.
Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart! - Psalm 32:11
Barely visible in the background to the left is Lise's Fetching glove that was oh so pretty. And behind my cup is the pair of 1776 socks that Ronda made that caused me to sigh and want to pull my yarn out of the closet and actually get it on the needles! Ah well, all in good time.
The quasi-knitting was me, sitting with the left arm in a sling, knitting vicariously through the others. It was still fun to be with them and watch and laugh and talk, but it made my fingers itch to be stiching!
And since the boba tea place was so close to James and Loni's house I followed them after work and we went out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant first and had a really nice time. The weather is so beautifully fall right now and we were able to sit out on the patio and truly enjoy it. Then of course a quick stop by there house to love on my grandpuppy and out the door to meet my friends.
And when we had the garage sale in Arkansas it was an absolutely stunning day. The morning started off quite chilly, so I pulled out my hand knit socks and clogs to wear that day. Silly as it might sound, I truly did have happy feet all day long! There's something intensely satisfying about knitting your own socks and each time I would slip my feet out of my clogs and wiggle my toes it would give me a smile on my face.
She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. - Proverbs 31:13
Speaking of his tricks, when I got home from scrapbooking on Saturday Keith said he'd taught Joe a new trick that day! He is now able to "shake" hands. Seems funny to us that we never taught that one to him. But here is what he does know:
3. lay down
4. let go (when we play fetch and he thinks he'd rather keep the toy than give it back)
5. dead dog
10. growl (This turned out to not be a good trick to teach him. It started out he'd lay on the bed with us and we'd play "growlies" with him where he'd growl for us to pet him, then when we'd stop he'd growl again, etc. We think it's adorable that he'll growl on demand and it looks silly to see him growl while wagging his tail. But what we didn't think of is that when he goes to the vet or boarding and he's sitting in a crate and growls to get attention it ends up with the exact opposite result of what he's wanting! People that don't know him are not going to run over and pet a 100 pound growling dog!)
11. dry off (This one cracks me up totally and probably was the longest time to teach him. He will now do that full body shake that dogs do to dry off when they get wet! The funniest part of it is that if he's not totally in the mood he'll just do a little shimmy of his hind end and it looks quite silly.)
12. get the ball (or whatever toy we say)
13. and now shake hands
Pretty impressive I think!
This is a picture of my workspace after cropping for almost 12 hours on Saturday! And as I gaze upon this photo it hits me that it's really no wonder that I get so little done at crops! I still contend that the most important part of a crop to me is the fellowshipping and laughing - and if I'm honest with myself I'd add the "eating, Starbucks and Sonic runs" as well. ;)
When I got home late Saturday night and was telling Keith animated stories about the day he just shook his head at me. Among the stories was another chapter of "and we have to move up there when we retire honey because I just love the area and people so much"! Of course I'd have to keep our current home as well so that I could still play with my friends here. It really presents quite a pickle, which is probably why he just shakes his head and pretty much ignores me on the subject.
My arm is still very sore and I had to baby it quite a bit on Saturday with the sling - except for when I threw that baby off and did the YMCA like a crazy woman! The problem with doing things like the YMCA when you're my age is that after the "performance" was over I sat in my chair panting for quite some time. Hard lesson to learn about yourself, but really I'm just not as young as I used to be! The bright side though is that I'm no longer as inhibited either. When I was younger I would never have done the YMCA in front of a group of people - LOL!
I'll admit to being a wee bit awestruck by this vision and it set the tone for a good part of my morning that day. I seem to be getting a plethora of advice lately on my faith, both from real people and reading things online and it's not always good. How is it that everybody seems to be knocking so many things lately? Are we not of one faith? The pettiness is just too much sometimes and I was getting way too tense about it all. I have come to the conclusion, through much prayer, that I have given way too much "power" to other people that perhaps I shouldn't. The online people especially as I really don't know anything about them. But even the "real" people that seem bound and determined to change me to their vision of what I should be. I believe now that I will just let them talk, smile sweetly and let my Bible do my teaching. I also have an awesome pastor at church, a knowledgeable Sunday School teacher and a Bible study leader that can help to guide me. The path of my feet seems to be uncluttered again and all is right in my world. :)
Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way. - Romans 14:13
Last night at our knitting group we turned in our scarves for the Think Pink Challenge. This scarf is the Single Cable Scarf from the One Skein Book and is made from Blue Sky Alpaca - oh so soft! I'm very pleased with this scarf and will most definitely do it again. I also did a fuzzy, novelty yarn scarf. I think there are about ten scarves from our group and I can't wait to see the picture of all of them together!
And before we met at the coffee shop for knitting and such we first met at a Vietnamese restaurant for dinner. Really good and I'm glad I went with some "pro's" since I'd never had this cuisine before. Quite tasty and I hope we return!
All in all we had a very nice weekend. Yesterday was the first time in a very long time that we did absolutely nothing and I have to admit that it was nice! I wasn't feeling great, so we just sort of hung out on the couch watching tv and enjoying the rain together. We did watch the nascar race, which gave me some quality knitting time, and Lynne' brought in the Blue Man Tour dvd for our evening's watching. When Keith switched to the Dallas Cowboy football game was about when I had enough of the couch!
I have been pretty good about doing the exercises on the big blue ball and still enjoying it. Now last night Joe was pretty revved up and thought it grand fun again, so while leaning back on the ball I had a golden retriever holding his tennis ball right in my face! Ah well, it's hard to get on to them when they are being so cute!
Saturday Keith had to work, so all of our best made plans for the weekend changed. This did give me the opportunity to head up to the scrapbook store and see a friend that was in town for the weekend. She moved to Omaha about a year ago, so it was good to see her again. We all had a nice visit and lunch together and it's always fun to catch up. Fun to see pictures of her son's first day of Kindergarten as well. He is just adorable and hard to believe he's getting that old.
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. - Psalm 19:14