holidays


Gifts. Presents. Shopping.  Just about finished.  Whew.

Let’s face it, some people are easier to buy for than others. There are gifts that I knew immediately would be “just right” for someone, and then there are gifts- that I’ll sweat about until long after Christmas.

There are picky people- that are tough to shop for- and then there are people who are genuinely thrilled with whatever you may give them. Honestly- there are people that I shop for out of “duty, and then there are those ai shop for out of delight.  Regardless- it’s also true- that I love to give gifts. Especially to the people who are dearest to me.

I always have. It isn’t about cost- or impressing, it’s about thought and blessing. An expression of love. Years ago- I read a book- “The Five Love Languages” I was not surprised to discover- that one of mine, is “Gifts”.

I love to give them, and yes- to get them. The more thought and care that is involved- the more I love it. Whether it’s knitting slippers to warm feet on a cold December morning- or surprising someone with something they really need, want or love– I’m there.

But honestly- this has been a struggle- in my walk with God- see—I love Him… but God doesn’t NEED anything, nor want for anything….besides— what have I that I can offer? In light of the glory and sovereignty of God— I have nothing to offer HIM!  Do I?

On the way to the post office- from the back seat of the car.. I heard a little voice singing…… “Ba rum pum pum pum…. ra pa pum pum…. I play my drum for Him, ba rum pa pum pum..”  And, I think I found my answer.

As I’ve been making my way through Luke (a chapter a day for the month of December- to help me keep “Christmas in the Context of the Gospel” ) I came to todays reading Luke 21- about the “widow’s mite” and was once again reminded of my favorite “Christmas special” of all time….The Little Drummer Boy.  I think they are related.

Lyrics

Come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum

A new born King to see, pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
So to honor Him, pa rum pum pum pum,
When we come. Little Baby, pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too, pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring, pa rum pum pum pum
That’s fit to give the King, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
Shall I play for you, pa rum pum pum pum,
On my drum? Mary nodded, pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him, pa rum pum pum pum
I played my best for Him, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
Then He smiled at me, pa rum pum pum pum Me and my drum.

Luke 21:1-4

The Widow’s Offering

1As he looked up, Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. 2He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins.[a] 3″I tell you the truth,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 4All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

In these verses- we do’t really learn much about the Widow- only simply that she was a widow- and that she gave what she had to give- and Jesus saw, and took delight in it. More so than even over the extravagant “offerings” of others- why? because she gave all she had, while others gave from their excess.

I often feel like I don’t have much to offer God- I am impoverished in heart- in Spirit I am not rich. I’m not particularly talented. Yet- like the wisemen- and the little Drummer Boy— when I come face to face with all God is- and all He’s done- I want to give-  so I offer, my heart.

Re- published from December 06;) 

New post by me, will be up tomorrow, at Laced With Grace…

“Force  Bulbs, not Fun, for Christmas”

christmas gridHave yet to knit-

 A hat (copy of a Hollister Co. Hat ) (already started…fingers crossed, which makes it hard to knit, I’ll tell you that.)

Tiny little ballerina slippers for my niece.

 Have yet to do….

Oh- way too much to list here. Let’s just say I have 3 spreadsheets I’m working from…

Christmas Spreadsheets: (yeah, I’m crazy like that)

1) Christmas gifts– bought to buy and wrapped columns.

2) To do list- cleaning

2) To buy- cook/bake list for parties- (Christmas Eve and Christmas day)

 PS- have to make a trip to the vet- our girl Sami (aka: bad dog Sami) had another (much smaller) seizure this morning… please pray for our girl. thnx.

molly and her cohortsIt’s just one of the many things I am culinarilary (just made that word up- I like it)  dependant on. 

It takes up my counter space and requires constant cleaning.  (Why can’t ANYONE put paper-towel or a napkin over what they are cooking????  Including me:()

Like a magic black box- (sometimes considerably brighter than me) it heats everything from spaghettios to cold coffee-it has faithfullyu served.

In addition- as a SAHM- it is one of my few and much trusted friends/co-workers. The microwave- has just been so close to me- being in the kitchen and all— where I spend so much of my waking LIFE!) (along of- course, with the washer-dryer, the  stove, dishwasher and fridge- we also chat- but they tend to be more reserved.)

At least- it was. Until Sunday night.

When my microwave gave up the ghost. 

We (ok- maybe it was just me)  quickly went through all the phases of grief:

Shock- (WHAT? Something is wrong with my microwave?)

Denial- (It’s just a fuse- it’ll be fine) 

Bargaining- (Maybe, if I clean it- it will work…)

Guilt- (maybe I worked it too hard…I should have cleaned the vent more often.. it’s all my fault.)

Anger- (I can’t believe I ever bought such a piece of crap!)

Depression- (I have no microwave. *sniff* )

Acceptance/hope- (I can get another microwave… maybe it will even be better!  I CAN live without a microwave!)

By Monday night- I could stand it no more.  There was no popcorn… I am incapable of cooking vegetables on the stove-top and I had a pile of pans with burnt spaghettios begging to be cleaned (that part isn’t true- I swear FlyLady!- but sounded funny) …so I trudged off to Walmart- in search of a replacement.

I stood in the microwave aisle like a deer caught in the headlights of oncoming traffic.  I had no idea there would be so many demands on me so soon after my grief.  Overwhelmed, I looked from shiny microwave to shiny microwave. 

There were: White ones.  Black ones. Stainless steel ones.  Microwaves the size of my first car.  Microwaves barely big enough to make a bag of popcorn.  Microwaves with grilling capabilities and microwaves with more buttons and options and computer memory than my laptop.

I settled on a (cheap) stainless/black model with a grilling capability.  (Which I will probably never use- but- my kids (probably to bring green army men to a painfilled, melting doom) will.

As you can see in the pic above- she now proudly sits on the countertop.  Maybe, a little too proudly.  Although, she’s already proved competent in the cooking of last nights green beans, I have a concern.  She seems to be glaring at the toaster and cavorting with the coffeepot.  I think she is unhappy with the cultural diversity on the countertop. 

Apparently the toaster is not of their “ethnicity”.  White plastic is frowned upon by the much  prejudiced stainless crew.  Too bad.   It’s my house.

I like cultural diversity.

I think I need to get out more.

Instead- I’ll distract you with my  shiny pretty current knit:

flowerbasket shawl zephyr wool/silkIn a fit of unoriginal hat overload  rebellion- I cast on a new piece of lace that I plan on wering for Christmas. 

 It’s the Flower Basket Shawl- from Fibertrends/ interweave press. A very simple 10 row repeat.  I love the yarn- Zephyr silk/wool laceweight- 2 strands held together- Ruby and Garnet.  I’m knitting on US size 5 Addi Turbo Lace Needles.

Maybe this will calm my Christmas cleaning- shopping nerves…. more pics are on flickr.

Personally- I think it’s mis-named.  To me- it looks like angels with their wings raised over their heads…. like this-  but then- I think I need to get out more— or maybe use less fumey cleaning supplies;)

And now- to work on painting the trim where the bad cat has scratched away the wood AND the paint….

crqanberry relish

Ingredients:

2 – 12 oz bags fresh cranberries

1 1/2 Cups sugar

1 giant (Christmas stocking type) Navel orange- zested- then pith removed and cut into large chunks

1) Wash- pick over cranberries (It’s our traqdition to have the kids do this part)

2) Zest orange (I use a very sharp peeler- make sure you there is no pith- it’s nasty-bitter)

3) In Food processor- pulse the sugar and orange zest together

4) Add your cranberries- pulse to a coarse chop

5) Add the orange chunks- pulse till your preferred consistency.

Caution- my oldest has been known to eat this by the bowlful.  (SO has my step-dad) Also great with pork- and chicken.  My FIL requests it…. He’s diabetic- and I’ve subbed in splenda for him- it works- but isn’t quite the same.

I will be making 3 huge batches.

Refrigerate over night.  Serve with turkey n trimmings;)  & a side of  handknits if you got em;)

At the bottom of the mosaic you can see 2 more Yarn Harlot’s Unoriginal Hats– one in Ironstone Orange yarn and one in Malabrigo Chunky- Snowbird… the CHristmas knits continue;)

Tomorrow I’ll be baking my “famous” apple pie- want a tutorial?  *** my guys call my simple apple pie famous- what can I say;)