Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Morning Thoughts: Thanksgiving, Christmas Tree, and Just Some Random Stuff

- This time of year is so much fun for me, but gotta be honest ... even after only 4 days of the "official" holiday season ... I'm already wiped! We had a great time with family that came out for Thanksgiving. It was really nice to have our house full and, when I looked out before I prayed over our Thanksgiving dinner, I was thinking to myself how awesome it is to have so many people with us. It was good to visit with everyone, although am I learning that being surrounded by a bunch of small children sometimes wears me down. There was more poop, more runny noses, and a bit more crying than I'm used too! But, it was totally worth it. The picture above is when we went to get our Christmas tree. Cousin "Hoper" is in the picture and she and Ezra think they are going to get married. :) It's really cute watching them play together.

- Cutting our Christmas tree is one of my absolute favorite things to do. I love the challenge of trying to find just the "right" tree. I seriously think that a Star of Bethlehem was directly illuminating the tree we picked this year. Out of thousands of trees, this one just stood out among all the others. Too bad that once I find this incredible tree ... I chop it down. :) Ezra had a blast playing with the saw and was trying to "chop" everything in his path. It was fun watching him be a "boy."

- The only thing as fun as cutting down our tree is decorating it, although, I have to admit that decorating the tree was a bit more challenging this year. Above our daughter is playing with some of the ornaments and was pretty happy then, but she was a bit more "cranky" than normal during this time and her screams were drowning out the blissful sounds of Christmas music playing through the ipod. But, even inspite of that, it was so great to have her experience this little tradition with us. I can't wait to celebrate Christmas with her this year. It's hard to believe that this time last year she was still growing inside of Carol and that we were nothing more to her than muffled noises she could hear from inside. Now, I simply cannot imagine life without her. She has me wrapped around her finger but I hope she doesn't learn to use that against me. :)

- Ezra only broke 3 bulbs this year ... we consider that a success. He had so much fun decorating with us and he loves playing with baby Jesus in the little Nativity scene we have. He keeps putting baby Jesus on the roof of the barn. Above he is helping with the finishing touches on the tree. Something I found myself thinking last night ... we've had quite a few people give us absolutely amazing hand-made ornaments and I'm so thankful for the time and effort they put in to giving us those things. But, when I saw the two ornaments Ezra made last year ... a John Deere tractor and a guitar ... the paint is all messed up, the colors don't match ... but I found myself "oooing" and "awing" over those two ornaments more than any of the ones other people gave us.

- I go in for my follow-up appointment on my knee tomorrow. The pain has subsided quite a bit, but the swelling is still there making it rather uncomfortable to bend or kneel. Looks like I have a baseball underneath the side of my knee and when Carol accidently touched it last night during the Steeler game, she nearly jumped off the couch! It looks pretty gross.

- Speaking of the Steelers ... grrrrrrrr. A promising start to the season seems to be fading to mediocrity. Hope is not lost, but it's just not looking good at the moment. What I've noticed about the Steelers ... they are 6 - 5. In their 5 losses they have lost by a combined total of 18 points. 4 losses were by 3 points and 1 loss was by 6 points. They are in every single game, but for whatever reason haven't been able to do the little things to get the wins. It was just a good reminder to me of how important the little things are. I'm reminded of a quote by Jon Gordon: "Interestingly enough, for all their greatness, the best aren't that much better than the others. They are simply a little better at a lot of things ... they just do the ordinary things better." It reminds me that I need to constantly give my best and just do the ordinary things around me to the absolute best of my ability.

- I have several meetings and appointments this week along with the other stuff typically on my schedule. It promises to be a busy week.

- For some reason I think the drinks at Starbucks taste better in their holiday cups.

- Good services yesterday. Continued the We Are series looking at We Are Dysfunctional. There are some crazy, dysfunctional families talked about in the Bible. We looked at Judah and the dyfunction that took place in his life and in his family and yet God brought Jesus from the same family tree that Judah was in. We are not bound to our past and God can bring healing ... as improbably as it seems sometimes.

- I'm pretty sure I over use the "..." It's my one vice. :)

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