Monthly Archives: November 2012

24 Days of Christmas (part 2)

And here is the rest of our Advent calendar. You can find part 1 here.




As you can see the fashion police hadn’t stopped by our house that day.

So, for the tree I used felt and sewed 24 buttons onto it. To attach it to the fridge I glued business magnets that we have gotten for free at various places.

In the 24 bags I put an ornament from thisbook and one of our daily activities.

24 Days of Christmas (Part 1)

I am SO excited for the Advent season. I don’t think I have ever been this excited to prepare for Christmas but because Dieter is now old enough to begin to understand the basic meaning of Christmas (that we celebrate Jesus’ birthday) I get to enjoy the season through the eyes of a child. I made him an Advent calendar that I’m still finishing up and I’ll post once its finished but I thought I would write down the most exciting part of his calendar (at least it’s the most exciting part to me!). Every day we are going to do a different activity. It’s going to take a little prep work for some days but it will make the month of December memorable for both of us.

Making snowballs last winter.

24 Days til Christmas (in no particular oder, yet)

  1. Buy food and donate to a food shelf.
  2. Bake Christmas cookies and share!
  3. Drink hot cocoa and watch “The Snowman”
  4. Take a Christmas gift to an elderly person from church.
  5. Make ornaments for the birds (pinecones, peanut butter, birdseed).
  6. Drive around and look at Christmas lights.
  7. Build a snowman using styrofoam balls.
  8. Watch “the Muppets Christmas Carol” and drink apple cider.
  9. Visit a living nativity.
  10. Go to the Holidazzle Parade.
  11. Make a Christmas card for a soldier.
  12. Decorate ice cream cones to look like Christmas trees (I’m not making the cookie filling even though it looks delish!)
  13. Go to store and buy a new Christmas book.
  14. Take the usually dreaded bath time and add bubbles and candlelight.
  15. Go ice skating (this will be interesting with a 2-year-old!).
  16. Make Christmas cards for family members.
  17. Read “Frosty the Snowman” and make sock snowmen.
  18. Read “If You Gave a Moose a Muffin” and bake muffins.
  19. Christmas-themed “I Spy” bottle.
  20. Buy a new outfit for Christmas Day.
  21. Go to the pet store and look at puppies.
  22. Play a new game Mommy got for you (I’m thinking Memory or some other toddler-friendly game).
  23. Leave a yummy Christmas gift for the mailman.
  24. Buy a toy to donate.

See why I’m excited??


Here’s part two!


Isn’t that what makes life so beautiful? That God in His artistic perfection ties pain and sorrow and joy and laughter all together to make this extraordinary tapestry, full of such beautiful colors. The suffering adds depth whereas the bright fragments of intense joy make it something to stare at for hours. What a shame it would be for someone to try to cut out all of the deep richness that pain brings into their tapestry, in fact if they do this, even the brightness of their joy will lose it’s vibrancy. No, you need both. A life with both suffering and joy is one that people will admire. It’s one that will be made into an heirloom and passed down from generation to generation. It will be hung on the wall, pointed at, and the countless inspiring stories that it holds will be told during large family get togethers as well as small intimate moments of openness and growth. It’s one that will not be forgotten, but will continue to change those who see it. It will live on through the people it touches.

I think I copied this from a friend on Facebook.  It was awhile back and I regret that I didn’t attach a name to it but the words are so beautiful and are so fitting for this past year.  On Thanksgiving I want to reflect on what has made this the most horribly difficult year of my life and also the most beautiful and life-changing year.  As a family we experienced heartache and loss that no parent should have to encounter.  Simply heartbreaking and and at first I felt like there was no reason to have hope, that we would simply live under a dark cloud with no possible chance for healing.  But as the pain began to dull and the wounds began to heal an amazing thing happened.  I began to have a vision of the wonderful ways in which God could use our loss to bring people near to him.  It takes a lot of trust, almost a superhuman amount of trust, but His plan is both immeasurably greater than my own and also unknowable.  So, even though I often fail I try to give thanks to God in all circumstances, praise him for all blessings and come alongside those who are hurting and need to see His love through me.

Some days it seems an impossible task, to look beyond the pain and see the greater picture.  But how beautiful this tapestry will be when God is finished creating it.  This year has added a lot of depth and I know there will be more years of depth woven into my life but I also know there will be bright fragments of intense joy.  I do not know where the joy will come from or even the pain but I anxiously await the ways in which I can use them to bring glory to His name.

Thank you God for every blessing you have given me, for every lesson you have allowed me to learn, and for the grace you extend to me daily as I continue to discover what it means to live a life pleasing to you.

Healthy Breakfast from a Special Guest!

Whew, life is crazy around here but that is for another post. All in good time and I promise I will be back at some sort of regularity soon. In the meantime, I had asked my mom awhile back about writing a post for the blog. She put together a great post that I’m really excited to share. I’m experimenting some changes in our food around here that she alludes to and I’ll share more about that later as well.  Thanks for sharing, Mom!

Stephanie had this fantastic idea the other day. She said: mom, wouldn’t it be fun for you to do a guest entry on my blog? Well I instantly loved the idea, and I thought what could I write about? So I waited for inspiration to strike.

She was telling me about starting to experiment with soaking grains. How it helps your body be able to absorb the nutrients better and so forth and that reminded me again of how I used to make “frisch Korn Brei” for our family for breakfasts. It is a soaked grain muesli / cereal.
I dug out my old coffee grinder and ground up some of my wheat berries to soak for the next mornings breakfast.
 I know I’m probably a bit of a geek, but that kind of thing makes me feel really good. It has always been fulfilling for me to feed our family things that I can feel super good about. Things that will build their bodies up and give them the energy that they need for their daily activities.  Their were times when they probably want to have more junk food around the house, but now that they are all grown up it has been incredibly rewarding for all of them to tell me how much they appreciate the way we emphasized good healthy food as they were growing up.
I tend to ebb and flow with my motivation when it comes to making and eating what I know is good for me. So it is good for me to have a few woman around me that inspire me back to that. I’m so proud that my daughter is one of them. So for all of you young moms    Out there, hang in there. It’s well worth the effort.

I ground the berries ( wheat kernels) coarse.

Mixed the ground wheat with just enough water to cover it.
Covered the bowl with a plate and set it out or the night to soak.
The next morning I added a shredded apple, some chopped nuts, some cream, a bit of lemon juice (not pictured) and a little honey.
This is the end product. Yummy! Hubby agrees:)
I know not everyone has a way to grind grain or even has the desire to do that. So here is the link to a soaked oat meal that is also very good.