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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Eve Play

Unfortunately, we didn't make it to Noelle's Sunday School Christmas play last week. She was supposed to be the sheep and was disappointed that we didn't make it. Hubby and I felt bad too. As a result, hubby promised her that we would have a play at home, in which she could be the sheep.

Thus, last night (after very little planning:) we put on a little play during our annual Christmas Eve tradition of Chinese food! We added pizza and ribs to the menu this year, and once everyone was full, the entertainment began. My parents were the audience.

Baby Jesus is Born
Luke 2:1-7

Joseph: Kenneth

Mary: LaSandra

Baby Jesus: Noah

The Sheep: Noelle, Bella, and Caleb

Inn Keeper: Ricky

The man who helped Mary and Joseph: Ross

Narrator: Tiffany

Costumes: Tiffany and LaSandra

Song: "We Wish You a Merry Christmas"

As you will see, this was so funny, it was hard for us to keep our composure:)

Merry Christmas to all!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Today is the Anniversary!

I held Noah in my lap the other day and told him the story of the night we found out he was a boy. That was so special for hubby and I because we had earnestly prayed for a son. Today is the 2-year anniversary of that night and I still feel the excitement every time I think about it!

Do you remember it too? You can re-live the moment by clicking here!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Confident Homemaker

When I was in college, I majored in Social Policy. There were students in my Social Policy classes that struggled to understand the concepts; but it seemed as though my life experiences and way of thinking made that field of study a perfect fit for me.

On the other hand, in order to graduate, I was required to take a certain number of science and math classes. In those classes, I felt lost. No matter how many office hours I attended or how many tutorial sessions I sat in on, I was always very slow to catch on. Still, with a lot of work and the help of the Lord, I was able to at least get a passing grade out of those classes.

When I think back to college, I realize that everybody was not good at everything. Although I am sure there was great ability shown in every academic department; I know that every individual was not showing stellar ability in every academic department. People had their niche. People majored in their areas of interest and in areas in which they excelled. That was the way it was. It made sense and no one seemed to have a problem with it.

When I think back to those good ole' college days, I remember feeling comfortable when it came to my academic strengths and weaknesses. I knew where I flourished and I focused my energy on those areas. In other areas, I did what was necessary to perform adequately; however, if I wasn't going to beat myself up over not getting straight A's in those areas. When it comes to homemaking, I realize that I need to approach things with a similar attitude.

In her book, "The Confident Woman" author Joyce Meyer writes, "Confident people do not concentrate on their weaknesses; they develop and maximize their strengths." She goes on to explain that while we should know what are weaknesses are, it is not conceited to think about what you are good at. As homemakers, it is easy to focus on what we don't do well. What we didn't accomplish during the day. What goals we still have not met. We also begin to look at others around us and what they do well and feel bad if we don't seem to flourish in the same areas. Focusing on these things will only leave us drained and discouraged.

On the other hand, what would happen if we focused on the opposite? What if we said "Hey, I fall behind on laundry, but I do a great job at menu planning!" or "I may not find paying the bills an exciting task, but I am great at planning and executing family traditions!"? Of course, the laundry and bill paying are important and need to be done. Still, if I tend to fall behind in those areas, I shouldn't judge my entire ability to be a good homemaker based on that! I can grow in those areas that I am weak in enough to do a good job for my family until God moves me into another season of life. Still, those areas may never be my niche. God has not called every individual to have a niche in every area.

Look at the body of Christ. 1 Corinthians 12 says:

Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit...

...For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;

To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;

To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:

But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will...

For the body is not one member, but many.

If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?

And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?

If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?

But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him."

Now, God has given us all different spiritual gifts and abilities, and he expects us to be content with not having them all. So, why should I feel bad if I do not have every natural gift, as it relates to homemaking? God has not made me a natural at every homemaking task, and that is okay. I can still be a confident and efficient homemaker without trying to be the same kind of homemaker as someone else. Our homes will look and function differently because we have different strengths and weaknesses.

Meyer writes, "Make a list of what you are good at and rehearse it daily until you gain confidence in your abilities. Thinking about what you are good at is not conceited; it is merely preparation to do your job with confidence." She explains that anything we are good at is because God has gifted us in that area.

I want to approach homemaking with more confidence as we approach this new year. Thus, I have chosen to start my own list of strengths in order to stay encouraged and to further develop these areas.

Some of the strengths I listed are directly related to my family life and others are more general strengths that I believe God has given me. Here is my list:

I am good at encouraging others.
I am a supportive wife.
I enjoy daily devotion with my children.
I am a loyal friend.
I can admit when I am wrong.
I am good at keeping my children well-groomed and healthy.
I enjoy reading aloud to my children.
I am a good public speaker.
I am good with directions.
I have strong communication skills.
I enjoy listening about my husband's day.
I am good at planning and executing fun and memorable family events/traditions.
I am a good writer.
I am good at long-term planning.
I acknowledge when I need help.
I laugh with my husband and children everyday.
I am determined.
I get along well with most people.

This list is a start for me as I continue to seek God about what his will is for my family and home and how he desires to use my gifts and strengths to be a blessing to my husband and children.

If you had to make a list of strengths, what would you write?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

In which I (d)evoultionize.

Currently, I'm at the point of the one sitting on the floor with her head slumped down. But, in just five short weeks I'll finally reach the point of that last one lying on her back!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

He's a Wonder

won·der (wndr)


a. One that arouses awe, astonishment, surprise, or admiration; a marvel.

b. The emotion aroused by something awe-inspiring, astounding, or marvelous.

2. An event inexplicable by the laws of nature; a miracle.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Apple Pickin' We Went

It started snowing on Tuesday, which reminded me that fall 2010 is just about officially behind us!

Although I wasn't able to post as many pictures as I would have liked, let the record show: our family had a beautiful fall this year! With moving into our first home, keeping up our family tradition of going to the apple orchard, and having a terrific costume-themed party for Noelle's 5th birthday, I think this is one fall our family will cherish for years to come!

Thankfully, my good friend Tiffany took some great shots of our trip to County Line Orchard this year!