Monday, December 01, 2008
SWB: The beat of Thanksgiving and Advent's beginnings
The tempo of Thankfulness, turkey dinners, family, friends back home in J-town for the holiday, worship, advent's beginnings and lots and lots of things being made have been the hallmark of the last week in my household. Let's see where the beat took us...
There seems to be this wall of "business" that is trying to invade my mind and home. For the most part, I've tried to remain at rest and peace, but there are times where I'm feeling pulled in too many directions. There is that transitional pull at work that is simply amplified by the whirring engine of the church holiday pace. It would be easier to pace myself vocationally if I was not abiding in the constant learning curve, but I am learning again that the little word, "No." is a good, good word to keep in my vocabulary and life.
On a sad note, I got news that my Aunt Carol is very ill. She's been struggling in her health for several years now, but last report is she's now fighting cancer throughout her body. I keep bracing myself for the call, but have yet to hear any more news.
My electric oven died this last week. I was in a panic as it would only half broil the contents I would put in it for the last month or so. In the midst of considering repairs or replacement, I opted for replacing as the cost of repair was too close to the new closeout oven I decided upon.
There is a ton of laundry to do. In fact, I believe that in the business of the holiday, I have a laundry blob replicating itself in my bathroom and on my landing. Its on my to-do list to reteach my children how to do laundry. Help is another word I'm trying to embrace.
Clutter has taken over in the midst of our Make Something Friday. There are art/sewing supplies covering the kitchen and dining room tables. I keep reminding myself that all this stuff is evidence of the works in progress that are being made for holiday gifting. Note to self: someday I will have an art/sewing room. :) Someday.
I picked up the book Contemplative Youth Ministry by Mark Yaconelli and have really been enjoying the gentle yet challenging tone of the book. I was encouraged with his teaching on the spiritual value of centering prayer and Lectio Divina (deep listening). It was good to hear how he was so fulfilled by this practice and it reminded me of how it has been a great blessing to me over the years. I had been wondering for a bit if I needed to reframe my own quiet prayer time, I'm affirmed knowing I love it for a reason. It's life-giving to me and I'm sticking with it.
We celebrated Thanksgiving at my mother-in-law's with a house full of family, food and noise. Just the way I like it. I gave my great nephew a book for advent to help him on his vocabulary - one of the I spy books with beautiful photos of things to find. We had time to sit and read it together.
By the way, the new oven made cooking for Thanksgiving a breeze. My sweet potato souffle actually was a souffle! Due to the addition of a great tool, I'm thinking I'd like to make cookies and have a cookie exchange. Let me know if you are interested in trading cookies with me!
Make something day was full of sewing, painting and gluing. We have more making to do in the weeks ahead, but I prefer this activity with my family this year to spending time a the mall. We also had a make something night last evening at church to kick off the advent season. It was another example of noisy fun that filled me up to brim. I especially enjoyed helping the little toddlers with glitter and glue as well as seeing my daughter enjoy the time of unplugged creative fun.
As a side note, on a whim last week, I submitted my article I wrote for the December church newsletter and posted to my blog( Set the pace for peace), to the Jesus Manifesto website and was excited to have them publish it! It was so exciting to see my words in this forum.
My children and husband have made the last week so fun and full. Ian enjoyed a long weekend off and we just enjoyed the time together so much. My daughter had some friends over and kept me connected to life at our favorite coffee shop, Labyrinth Press Co., for some great local/visiting bands and friends who were home for Thanksgiving.
My son's 12th birthday is coming this weekend. He's is a lively, creative, and fun-loving tween. This past weekend he put his video and musical skills to work and made a beat-box movie. What makes this so clever is he's more of an old school rock and roll fan. He adores the Who. He switched up his musical style and put this together on imovie.
PS> You can see all the art supplies on the table behind him... here's to a lively advent and Christmas season for all!