Thursday, November 30, 2006
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
I just finished the household chores for the night and was preparing to go to bed, when I heard a noise in the front of the house. I opened the door to the front room and to my surprise, Santa himself stepped out from behind the Christmas tree. He placed his finger over his mouth so I would not cry out.
"What are you doing?" I started to ask. The words choked up in my throat, and I saw he had tears in his eyes. His usual jolly manner was gone. Gone was the eager, boisterous character we all know.He then answered me with a simple statement.
"TEACH THE CHILDREN!"
I was puzzled; what did he mean? He guessed my question, and with one quick movement pulled a miniature toy bag from behind the tree.
As I stood puzzled, Santa said, "Teach the children! Teach them the old meaning of Christmas. The meaning that now-a-days Christmas has forgotten."
Santa then reached in his bag and pulled out a FIR TREE and placed it in front of the fire place. "Teach the children that the pure green colour of the stately fir tree remains green all year round, representing the everlasting hope of mankind, all the needles point heavenward, making it a symbol of man's thoughts turning toward heaven."
He again reached into his bag and pulled out a brilliant STAR.
"Teach the children that the star was the heavenly sign of promises long ago. God promised a Saviour for the world, and the star was the sign of fulfillment of His promise."
He then reached into his bag and pulled out a CANDLE.
"Teach the children that the candle symbolises that Christ is the light of the world, and when we see this great light we are reminded of Jesus who fills our lives with light."
Once again he reached into his bag and removed a WREATH and placed it on the tree.
"Teach the children that the wreath symbolises the real nature of love. Real love never ceases, like Gods love which has no beginning or end."
He then pulled from his bag an ornament of HIMSELF.
"Teach the children that I, Santa Clause symbolise the generosity and kindness we feel during the month of December."
He then brought out a HOLLY LEAF.
"Teach the children that the holly plant represents immortality. It represents the crown of thorns worn by our Saviour. The red holly represents the blood shed by Him."
Next he pulled from his bag a GIFT and said, "Teach the children that God so loved the world that HE gave us HIS only SON... We thank God for his very special gift."
"Teach the children that the wise men bowed before the Holy Baby and gave HIM gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. We should always give gifts in the same spirit of the wise men."
Santa then reached in his bag and pulled out a SUGAR CANE and hung it on the tree.
"Teach the children that the sugar cane represents the shepherd's crook. The crook on the staff helps to bring back lost sheep to the flock."
He reached in again and pulled out an ANGEL.
"Teach the children that it was the angels that announced the glorious news of the Saviour's birth. The angels sang 'Glory to God in the highest, on earth peace and good will toward men."
Suddenly, I heard a soft twinkling sound, and from his bag he pulled out a BELL.
"Teach the children that as the lost sheep are found by the sound of the bell, it should ring to guide us to God. The bell symbolises guidance and return. It reminds us that we are all precious in the eyes of God."
Santa looked back and was pleased. I saw the twinkle in his eyes as he said:
"Remember, teach the children the true meaning of Christmas and do not put me in the centre, for I am but an humble servant of the One that is, and I bow down to worship HIM, our LORD, our GOD."
Sunday, November 26, 2006
I pulled into the line at the Koya Japan and ordered a special of the day, then was lucky to find an empty table right beside us. Apparently the tables were slim pickins. A 80ish year old woman approached and set her bagel and coffee on the adjoining table and said in a little voice 'there really aren't any tables to be found...'
Can I tell you how awful I am without you judging me? If not ...please skip down a few lines...
I was kind of uneasy when she sat down, I was thinking of how I'd have to make conversation, be all smiley, and try to keep Ashlyn under control, while trying to finish lunch. Selfish aren't I?
Something made me realize my selfishness as the lady was making herself comfortable and I knew then that I needed to forget my needs and look at this as an opportunity. I began the conversation by asking if she was doing some Christmas shopping today..... She replied with a smiley yes and we thus broke the ice and throughout the next half hour she began to unravel a tale about her life. She told me about her husband, the fighter pilot in the war and about her 4 grandkids and one son, who wasn't married. She told me that today she was going to Sears because they had some wonderful specials on, and we laughed about how great bargains are. She asked about my life and was intrigued to hear I lived on a dairy farm, she leaned in closer to hear about the cows and told me I had a wonderful life, and what a great life I'd make for my children with 'all that fresh air'. She also said I must love my husband very much to be able to spend that much time with him, I told her I did....very much so. She asked where we had met and when I replied 'church', a very solemn expression came over her face and she quietly said 'oh.'
The conversation slowly ended then and she said she had to get going, but not before she offered half of her bagel to Ashlyn.
I couldn't help but think what it was that made her get so quiet about my response of 'church'...I wondered if she'd had a bad experience, or if it was that the idea of church was so foreign to her. She was so sweet and yet was so seemingly turned off by my even mention of the word. I wanted to know what it was ...
I enjoy the community of church and the comfort of knowing Jesus, without it, my life would be pretty lonely, I imagine. When you understand what Jesus did for you, it would have take all of your being to not want to believe. What an incredible sacrifice.
Here are the lyrics to a song by Nichole Nordeman titled 'Why'. When I first heard it, tears streamed down my face ....knowing I am this little girl, as are you.
We rode into town the other day
Just me and my Daddy
He said I'd finally reached that age
And I could ride next to him on a horse
That of course was not quite as wide
We heard a crowd of people shouting
And so we stopped to find out why
And there was that man
That my dad said he loved
But today there was fear in his eyes
So I said "Daddy, why are they screaming?
Why are the faces of some of them beaming?
Why is He dressed in that bright purple robe?
I'll bet that crown hurts Him more than He shows
Daddy, please can't you do something?
He looks as though He's gonna cry you said he was stronger than all of those guys
Daddy, please tell me why
Why does everyone want him to die?"
Later that day the sky grew cloudy
And Daddy said I should go inside
Somehow he knew things would get stormy
Boy was he right But I could not keep from wondering
If there was something he had to hide
So after he left I had to find out
I was not afraid of getting lost
So I followed the crowds
To a hill where I knew men had been killed
And I heard a voice come from the cross
And it said, "Father, why are they screaming?
Why are the faces of some of them beaming?
Why are they casting their lots for My robe?
This crown of thorns hurts Me more than it shows
Father, please can't You do something?
I know that You must hear My cry
I thought I could handle the cross of this size Father, remind Me why,
Why does everyone want Me to die?
When will I understand why?"
"My precious Son, I hear them screaming
I'm watching the face of the enemy beaming
But soon I will clothe You in robes of My own
Jesus, this hurts Me much more than You know
But this dark hour I must do nothing
Though I've heard Your unbearable cry
The power in Your blood destroys all of the lies
Soon You'll see past their unmerciful eyes
Look there below, see the child
Trembling by her father's side
Now I can tell You why
She is why You must die"
Friday, November 24, 2006
Whatever part of my brain it was, that whispered to my hands, legs, fingers and wallet, to 'go,...go shopping...,you can do it, ...you're awesome' needs to be removed. It's not functioning, and it's not holding any responsible purpose up there any longer.
It was a PD day today. Did you know that and not warn me? If you did ...please leave me your name and address and you just be ready for a letter from my lawyer. This is being filed under 'abuse' or 'neglecting to mention something that would have saved one's sanity'
Lemme 'break it down' for you:
*Didn't want to bring my stroller as it currently needs a scrub down from the summer months of regular farm wear...you know...like the country song goes .....'a little mud on the tires' ...'cept mine's poop. Of the cow and fly varieties. SOooo I decided to rent one of those snazzy mall carts with the BIG baskets....I WAS finishing my Christmas shopping after all. I was forced to park in the "Back 40" lot, you know the one...where the garden centre is typically set up in the summer months....approximately 2 kilometers from the closest available door. Not complaining....I could use the exercise so I huffed and puffed my way to the care centre where the strollers are. After giving my information and signing off on a waiver that holds me to not throwing my stroller off the balcony, or doing wheelies in the parking lot, the paperwork was all said and done. The receptionist looked at me with a certain gleam in her eye....(not a twinkle, definitely a gleam) she went to the back and came out saying 'Now I have to warn you..'
(Okay, that saying can never be good. Particularly when the sentence involves a baby and a stroller. ) "this is the only one we have left ...and it's a teeny bit squeaky.' I looked at her and said 'Oh that's no problem at all...' and really..I didn't care if it had a squeaky wheel, I was just so happy to put Ashlyn down and get shoppin'...woo hoo!
I got her strapped in and the diaper bag loaded up, and we were good to go. Good to go through THE MOST HUMILIATING mall experience EVER! ....this was no 'squeaky wheel' folks. This stroller had been pushed to Arizona and back with no tune ups. All four wheels screamed at the thought of having to go an inch further, they were barely holding on..I tried lifting the back wheels and just pushing on the fronts, but it was no use, the more pressure I put on the fronts, the more they cried out ' LOOK AT US, LOOK AT THE PAIN WE'RE IN ....EEEEEEEKKKKKKK' they'd even throw in a wiggle now and then, a crazed little hobble, Ashlyn was waving her hands in the air like she was on some kind of roller coaster. She began imitating the horrid, little, 4 wheeled beast. "EEEEEKKKK..." she'd shrill throughout the mall, while waving her arms wildly.
It went something like this....
No do that really quickly and really loudly over and over.
It was a sight to behold. I know all the other moms had to be feeling compassion and they were trying to look without staring at the 3-ring circus. they were all so thankful in that moment they saw us...the beast, the wild child and I ...the blushing, big mama. I made them feel better about themselves. 'Wow' they thought...'Poor lady, having to rent a stroller and all...' I wanted to scream...'I have 3 strollers and a wagon at home, you know. Could'a had the pick of the litter, but NOOoo, had to have the great idea that THIS would somehow be more convenient....'
I made my way squeeling through the mall and decided I could no longer put up with the glares, stares, and outright guffaws....I made my way back to the care center to see if someone had dropped off a silent stroller...to no avail.
The only place you couldn't hear the beast was in the food court, as insanely busy as it was, and that being the very place I had planned to avoid.....so we hobbled our way down....
To be Continued....
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Monday, November 20, 2006
See that nice fluffy mess beside the potty?? That's what happend to our MEGA roll of toilet paper. The hubs installed our fabulous toilet paper holder the other day, and I've been regretting it ever since. The roll just sitting on the tub was fine with me and now little hands can reach the roll and well.....create this.
There is a fascination among my babes with soft tissuey paper....yesterdays project was the kleenex box below. Ashlyn took her time to gently pull out each sheet and toss it onto the floor. I was busy with Gabe at the time and came into the livingroom to find miss muffett sitting atop a mountain of white. Of course it was my fault for leaving the box within reach of little arms, but c'mon ...we've had this head cold for days and kleenex has been a necessity...
I've let the house go. It's been too much to stay on top of everything....when the babes and myself are sick, it seems
It kicked me into high gear, and I was able to get things up to snuff in this ol' house, again. It seems un-ending....the same duties over and over again, the same clothes folded, the same dishes dried, the same carpet vaccumed, and the same furniture dusted......probably from the same old dust. But...once it's clean again, I get a wonderful feeling of satisfaction. It feels good to know I'm doing it for my family, that I'm creating a warm, loving, and clean environment for them to grow up in and for my husband to enjoy. I like that he can work a hard day and come into a clean house with a warm meal on the table. There will always be days that things don't get done....but then there's always tomorrow. As long as I feel I've done my best, and not lazed around for the day ...yapping or blogging (2 downfalls for me!!) then I can rest easy. I think I might tackle some Christmas decorating today...or some baking. Mmmm, love this time of year! Hope you're happy at home today too :)
Sunday, November 19, 2006
1. I am still in my jammies.
2. Ashlyn and Gabriel have both vomitted, had diarrhea, coughed, sneezed, had fevers, had several baths, in the last 24 hours...and were in jammies all the while (many different pairs, I might add :)
3. The hubs went to church this morning and brought home pizza afterwards....yummm!
4. I noticed this morning Ashy has a chipped tooth, very slight but still noticeable, I think it may have happened when she fell on the cardboard book and tore her frenulum....poor babe. Now her falls are beginning to leave long term effects!
5. I know that Tim Horton's is now serving hot drinks in their Christmas cups ( I was also treated to a hot chocolate when the hubs got home!)
6. Gabriel was playing with the cat (not very gently) and was scratched on his arm, we cleaned it up and put 2 band-aids on it, then, because he had been crying for a while (feeling badly about how he treated fat-cat AND because his scratch hurt) he worked himself up too much and vomitted.......on his band-aids! So we had to replace them and wash his arm again...
7. I haven't been outside at all today.
8. I don't know what we're eating for dinner (...although I'm sure it involves leftover pizza...aren't I just SO NOT a good cook today!!)
9. I found a wonderfully inspirational blog today for keeping your home it's best: http://www.thesparrowsnest.typepad.com/
10. I'll be going to bed very early tonight...!!!
Friday, November 17, 2006
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Sunday, November 12, 2006
Saturday, November 11, 2006
We had our friends Tom and Christin over for dinner lastnight and after enjoying our dinner, I had to put Ashy to bed and Christin had to make a pit stop. Wellllll wouldn't you know it, the plumbing starts to act up when guests are over AND when they are sitting on the potty having a tinkle. Poor Christin, didn't know what to do when the water began to bubble beneath her. The toilet nearly overflowed,and luckily Tom was on the alert with the plunger and saved the day! (Let me mention, before I completely mortify Christin, that it was the plumbing, and certainly not her!!)
Well Dwight and I were worried about things getting worse and decided it would be a good idea to empty the ol' septic tank. You city slickers get sewers, we get an old tank that brews and bubbles and sometimes can't handle it's contents any longer. 'BRING FORTH THE HUBS...'
Allow me to give it to y'all, re-neck styyyle. (please read as a southern red-neck would write..)
It sure was a rainin' this mornin'. My Maan was out ther', diggin' like no temorry. We's been havin' some problems with the poop tank. Er at least the piipes. Gosh, I ain't never been so m'barrassed as when we's did have some folks over fer supper last yesterday and the pooper started bubblin'...While she was on it. Darn Tootin...wouldn't ya know it, you'd a thought the way my hubs uses that thing, it woulda' been 'im, but a'course not. Anywho, he's out ther diggin' and yells at me through the door, 'It's a huge lid honey, Don't think I can lift 'er.' Well, shoot, if ma maan can't lift 'er, nobody can... He went and got his pappy and they 'cided they ought'a get the jack. They done dismantled ma porch ..took the stairs off, just to get at the dang thing. They had BETTER done get that thing put back together, er ther's gonna be hack to pay, I tell ya's. So they gott'er jacked up and wooooweee, I had to laght my purdyest candle ta the beat the stench...I tell ya, it made ma eyes run. Ya see aout her' in the boonies, we can't see the point in hirin' it done, when we's got a perfectly good spreader in the back shed. Uh-huh, you got it, we done it all by r'selves!! My husband makes me so dog-on proud! Ther' he was, up to his knees in mud diggin' out 'r tank. Lid was off and the suckin' pipe was in, she sucked 'er right clean! Aa was in charge a flushin' poopers, so when my maan yelled, aa was a runnin' up an down the stairs, flushin all the while! hyuck! When it wer' all done, my maan surely knew he just had to put the porch back togetha'... he was so happy...he gave me a big grin and I was just feelin' his luuve, so I done my womanly duty and made 'im a big ol' breakfast. It was just super-dooper.
It was a red-necks dream come true.
Friday, November 10, 2006
The roast is done for tonight and I still have to vaccum and clean up some dishes from lunch but overall I'm feeling the wonderful sense of exhaustion that comes from doing your best. My Shoulders are aching, my legs are freezing, my nose is runny, I need a shower....but dang do I feel good! Can you see my smile?
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
1 lb. browned and drained ground beef
1 box oven ready noodles (this is key! or you'll be boiling them before hand)
1 can thick spaghetti sauce
1.5 cups shredded cheddar
1 container cottage cheese
1 container ricotta cheese
1 egg - beaten
salt and pepper
Combine in a large bowl ricotta, cottage, beaten egg, 1 tsp parsley, and salt and pepper to taste.
Pour and spread a small amount of sauce on the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish. Lay noodles to cover bottom of dish. Cover noodles with browned beef and pour a layer of sauce over it. Do another layer of noodles. Cover noodles with cheese and egg mixture. Lay final layer of noodles, pour sauce over to cover and spread shredded cheddar on top. Sprinkle with 1 additional tsp. of parsley.
Bake at 360 for 70 minutes. Enjoy!
I just received my Kraft magazine today with an abundance of holiday recipes covering each page. I can't wait to sit down with a hot tea and flip through, picking out which new recipes I will try next....If you weren't convinced enough to sign up for this free magazine the last time I mentioned it, then you can view it online by clicking here. They also provide a link to sign up to receive it in the coming months....( they write 4 a year)I'm not sure if you'll receive the holiday magazine, but you can at least view it online.
Stratford turned out to be more of a work related trip than expected. The Hubs promised to devote a full day to this little city so we can browse, someday in the next couple weeks.
Monday, November 06, 2006
I've made my self a 'daily duty' list that I hope to scratch off by the time the holiday arrives. It involves big cleaning projects around the house as well as some other prep ideas...here's a few:
*pick out Christmas cards, and write letter
*have kids photos taken on Nov. 16th
*write a baking list
*get hair cut and highlighted for the holidays
*clean fridge and freezer
and many many more...
I've also read some ideas on how to cut down on laundry, and this is something this momma needs to do. It involves streamlining your closet, picking through your clothes and cutting back. As it stands I have FAR too many pyjamas and too few pants. (Gives you an idea of what I'd be wearing if you just 'popped' over....hee hee...please call first :) So the idea is to have 2 dressy outfits, 1 work clothes outfit, and 5 regular outfits. (there's a little more to it than that...for the full story, click here)
So I think this is something I would love to implement once the hub bub of the holidays are over. This will give me something to focus on and keep my hands busy. I find the days after Christmas to be some of the most tiresome days of the year, The weather just makes me feel down. The plan is to prevent it this year by having some great project ideas on hand, Dwight is also in a lot more at this time of year as the ground work is done, and he likes to get into house projects too.
Today we're off to Stratford to pick up some farm supplies, but my alterior motive is to look in some shops....I love the way the little shop windows are decorated and can't wait to start getting ideas for my shopping list. The Hubs knows I love this kind of day trip and he's rushing around trying to get the farm chores done so we can get going... Gotta love him.
I'll let you know what trinkets I find....
Sunday, November 05, 2006
We used the dining room table as our assembly line.
This is one of my favourite times, spending time with my mom talking. over food. We shared a tea while snapping noodles and pouring sauce and it was delightful, and for supper tonight?? you got it....homemade lasagna....Mmmm.
Friday, November 03, 2006
Sorry about the dead link....I've refreshed it, and it's now in working order. To read about the chemical burns caused by Mr. Clean sponges, click on the word 'BURNS' above....
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
This is the second barn fire for these folks, they just re-built from a huge fire approx. 2 years ago...It's such a sad situation, They are a family with 4 small children and I'm sure are so stressed out right now....please pray for their family.
UPDATE: Dwight just called from the barn and has informed me that 27 of 40 cows are now being sent away....During the fire the vinyl ceiling began to drip hot globs of plastic that landed on the backs of the cows, some of the cows were able to break free of their collars (which hold them in their pens) but most were freed once Harold arrived. He was sleeping at the time, the smoke fumes blew over to a neighbours who smelt it and came racing over to wake up Harold and Joanne. Some of the cows had burnt udders and some have smoke inhalation.