So today, we are saying good-bye to an old year as well as to an interim pastor. Today was Pastor Phil's last day with us and on my part, it was met with many tears. I was once okay with good-byes, but ever since my father died eight years ago, saying good-bye to anyone has been nearly impossible for me.
We managed to coerce him into singing the sheep song for us one more time and the praise team performed "Friends" as the offertory. After Sunday School, we presented both he and his wife with prayer shawls. I know that they will be back to visit, but I sure will miss him in the interim. I'm not so much sad that he will no longer with us as a pastor (though as far as pastors go, he is amazing) but I'll miss him as a friend.
And the New Year
I'm not sure as to why I make resolutions. Maybe it is so that I feel as if I have a game plan, even if I don't stick to it. But I am going in with the best intentions and we'll see what happens. Some I'll share with you and others I won't and at the end of 2007, we'll see how we end up.
1) Drink water: I could say "drink more water" but a tablespoon would be more than I currently drink. I generally start the day with coffee, and then have one or two Diet Pepsi's before the day is through. So, though I'm not drinking soda with lots of sugar, or even drinking lots of soda, my water intake still sucks. I'm going to do better.
2) Go back to Curves: Really need to get back there and stick with it. The goal is three times a week.
4) Spend less money: I can hear the Brit applauding from here when he reads this. I don't think I'm a frivilious spender, but I also don't hold back if there is something I really want (We're talking small items here; ie, yarn, a book, etc). I'm going to do better and only give a treat now and then.
5) Knit myself some hats! With the Christmas knitting done and only one more project that I promised to participate in, I am then going to do a little selfish knitting. One of my favorite thoughts about knitting was hats, because like my father, I have a big head, so finding hats that fit is always a challenge (my head is proportinate by the way. I don't want ya'll thinking I'm some kind of circus freak). Now, I could knit hats to fit and felt them even! How many hats have I done for myself in the year and a half since I started knitting? Right. Nada.
6) Write more: Whether it be blogging, or story telling, I want to write more. I haven't given up the dream of being published, even though I am not quite ready to completely commit.
Last year in review
I gave a lot of thought to what the lessons were from 2006, but fact is, not too much significant happened this year. There were no major changesm either good or bad, so there were only a few things I could think of that really were any kind of impact.
2006 was a year of healing spiritually
The split in the church occured at the end of 2005, so this year the congregation of CELC healed. We were blessed with faithful, good people, and a wonderful interim pastor. I've made some amazing friends in church that I didn't know all that well before when we were so much larger. All in all, the journey has been amazing and we are now getting ready to embark on a new chapter with our new pastor.
2006 began a knitting group and some new friends
When Lisa and Micki hooked up, a knitting group began. At first, the only new folks for me were Micki and Sheri, but now we have added a few others to the group, including a few sisters from Shepherdstown. This group is one that I look forward to every month, even when nearly everyone is a more advanced knitter than I am. The ladies there are a wealth of not only knitting, but of wisdom in general.
And honestly, that may be it, but sometimes an uneventful year is a good thing. I've had years I could hardly wait to get over with (like 2006 is for Shell and Robyn) and years that were incredible. This year was just quiet with no major upheavals, which turns out, was a bit of a blessing for me.
So, onward and upward! I have many pictures to show you; from Christmas and our open house, once I get them downsized to fit on here. In the meantime, happy New Year to all of you!
Sunday, December 31, 2006
Monday, December 25, 2006
I hope that everyone had a very merry Christmas!
I am not a huge fan of Christmas day; I do, however, adore Christmas Eve. I love the anticipation, and the carols sung in church. There is just something very magical about that day of the year and it doesn't matter if it is raining or snowing or if the sun is shining; the day just reeks of pure intrigue for me. Yesterday, however, someone(s) tried to ruin that for myself and for Aaron, though I am pleased to report that it was foiled in the end.
A bit of history
Back in 1980, I was the new kid in town, having just moved here from southeran California. I didn't really know anyone in school and then one girl latched onto me. For the sake of this story, we'll call her Psycho Mom or PM for short. It didn't take me too long to discover that PM really didn't have any other friends; in fact, she was often teased or ridiculed by the other kids. It didn't take me too long to discover why. PM was odd. I mean, really odd. I ventured into friendship with her tentatively and as most teens do, I spent a couple of nights at her house from time to time. There were times that she was perfectly, or at least realitively normal, and then there were other times when PM would be trying to convince me that while I slept, she had been busy levitating herself across the room. I, of course, did not believe this and to this day, I don't believe this, but as I said, she was odd.
The one positive thing PM did do, was to introduce me to her church, which is now my church as well and has been for twenty-five years. My parents soon followed me to her church as well. PM and I started high school and beings I was not "odd" and I was rather outgoing, I soon found myself with many other friends and started to pull away from the "supernatural" PM.
One day, my mom ran into PM's mom while out shopping. PM's mom proceeded to lament to my mother about how her daughter, PM, had no friends and no one liked her and PM was miserable and hated school. My mother promised to talk to me to see if I could help at all. I have always been a bit of an adopter of strays (cats in need, kids in need, you get the picture) so when mom told me about what PM's mom had said, I agreed to take PM under my wing and I did. That was when my high school life became a rollarcoaster.
PM could be a really good friend when she took a notion to do so, but when she wasn't taking that notion, she could and would do things that would cut me to the quick. As teens we are in a process of learning the ways of people and life and PM quickly taught me all about trust...or more like, who not to trust. She would say terrible things about me to my friends, knowing that they were going to tell me what she said. Once PM walked up to a boy I had liked for the better part of a year and planted a kiss on him right in front of me. Beings she was the school whackjob, he was horrified, but again, the stunt was carefully orchestrated just to hurt me. What makes it all even more shocking is that she referred to me as her best friend (I'd hate to imagine how she treated enemies.). Each time PM would do something hurtful, a day later, she'd come begging my forgiveness and I'd take her back. Finally in my senior year, I called it quits with her permanently.
We graduated high school and moved ahead, neither of knowing what the other was doing with her life. PM actually married long enough to have a daughter (we'll call her PMJ or Psycho mom Jr) before divorcing the husband (who by the way is a special kind of weird all by himself). When I returned to my church after a long absence in young adulthood, PM was no longer attending there, but after the split in the church, she returned with PMJ, who is now about ten. Aaron has carried a small torch for PMJ desipte my warnings. From what I had gathered about PMJ, she was an odd duck as well, which was bound to happen as she lives with mom.
Aaron had made PMJ an ornament for Christmas that said "I love you, PMJ". PM and myself have a strained relationship at best. Though we only see each other at church occasionally (I attend first service and sing on the praise band and she attends second service and sings in the choir) conversation to this day is kept at a minimum between us. I have not been fond of Aaron's crush on PMJ, but it was, after all, only a crush. After all, he is only eleven. But knowing the weirdness which is PM, I did not think Aaron's ornament was a good idea, so I ventured out to the mall before Christmas to a little ornament place and purchased a $13 ornament that said "Aaron" and "PMJ" and in between their names was the word "Friends". He was happy with it and I was resting easier about his gift to PMJ. I will now relay the events of yesterday as they became known to me.
The Brit did not attend church yesterday morning because we would be attending the candlelight service that night, but it was a combined service and both the praise team and the choir were singing, so I took both boys and headed to church for 9:00 Sunday School. Aaron had his gift to PMJ in his hand when he headed to Sunday School (they are in the same class) and I headed to the santuary to rehearse. After rehearsal, I went into the office and Sandy, Aaron's Sunday School teacher and a good friend of mine, was there running off some copies for her class. I asked her if Aaron had given PMJ the gift and Sandy smirked and said "yes". When I asked what was wrong, Sandy told me that PMJ had said something to him after opening it that had upset him, but she didn't know what was said. I rolled my eyes, only able to imagine. Aaron is pretty backwards and awkward around girls, and though annoyed that maybe he had gotten his feelings hurt, I didn't think too terribly much about it. When he appeared for church, he seemed fine and he was going to run the powerpoint for the opening song. He was sitting in the first pew with me directly behind him. Just mere minutes before the service was to start, PM comes up the aisle, choir robe billowing out behind her, she puts her finger in Aaron's face and says "No physical contact. PMJ did not appreciate being tackled." Then without a word or a glance at me, his mother, she turns on her heel and heads back.
I was flabbergasted. Fact is, had I had time to collect my bearings she would have gotten a mouth full, but I was so shocked (as history repeats itself and PM has always loved to shock me with her behavior) that words failed me. I looked at Aaron after she left and said "What did you do?" He muttered something about them playing a game and PMJ getting knocked over. Though not angry with Aaron, I told him he was to stay away from PMJ from now on. Period.
I seethed through the service, but smiled the whole time as PM was sitting up in the choir loft looking like the sour puss that she is and I was not about to let her see me angry or upset. So, I smiled the whole time. After church, a few people who had witnessed PM's attack on Aaron were questioning me about what had happened (PM has no friends in the church, so situation is still normal...everyone finds her very odd) and I helplessly told them what little I knew. Then Sandy's husband told me that he had been present for what had occured. It seems the kids were playing keep away with a stuffed toy and two of the boys (Aaron being one of them) were behind PMJ and she got knocked over. It was not intentional and no one was hurt. Again, I rolled my eyes. Then I asked Aaron what PMJ had said to him when he gave her the ornament. Her words were "I'm just going to smash it when I get home."
Now, had I known this when PM came forward to make her little diva scene before church, I would have had ammunition about how maybe Aaron didn't appreciate her daughter's lack of manners and grace when receiving a gift. I struggled all day yesterday with whether or not to confront PM at church that night and I decided against it. Though if she ever pulls a stunt like that again, she is going to have me and a Brit in her face. If PM ever brings this up to me again, she is going to get told that if she has a problem with my child, she is to speak to ME and not to wave her stubby little finger in my child's face. The only thing that saved her last night was that it was Christmas.
Aaron was in tears after the service over PMJ's words to him, but I had a chat with him that was perhaps too honest. I told him that it wasn't really PMJ's fault; that she had weird parents and that is who she is learning from and that unfortunately, she is already taking after her mother. It's a shame really that the unhappy teenager that PM was at one time, is going to repeat on her daughter. But already, PMJ is learning mommy's way of biting, hurtful words and actions, which will probably leave her with very few friends as she gets older. Aaron seemed better after our talk and was fine by the candlelight service where he neither looked at nor spoke to PMJ. In all honesty, despite the fact that he got his feelings hurt, I do breathe a sigh of relief at knowing that the "little romance" is over. There was no way I would have been able to stomach the inlaws.
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
This past Sunday was our annual Christmas Sunday School program. Watching the program from a pew, I was reminded of how blessed we are, given that a year ago, many of us had our doubts as to if we, as a church, were going to make it. Our youth were so few, you could count them on one hand. The sanctuary was pretty empty and everyone was feeling pretty apprehensive.
Now, here we are a year later and take a look at our "few" youth now!
We have totally grown in the past year. Everyone very much enjoyed the program.
Pastor Phil and Carol played the grandparents in a skit done by the elementary school kids.
These are a few of their "grandchildren", including my oldest in blue, black and white coat. He's grinning because the little girl he is looking at is the love of his young life.
Amy gave us a beautiful rendition of "Away in a Manger".
What our preschoolers lack in number, they make up for in adorableness. They sang "The BIBLE" and were loved by all.
Our teens did a wonderful job with their skit, all of them playing a part of an object at Christmas time with their own spin on the personality.
I'll continue tomorrow with the retirement dinner we held on the same day for our beloved interim pastor. *sob* we only have him for two more Sundays!
Okay, so I've been really busy! I can't believe that I blogged for thirty days in a row and then pretty much disappeared off the face of the blogospeare! I'm still trying to catch up to Christmas, which is still somewhat in the lead!
But, back to business. On December 9th, our little knitting group had a little Christmas party!
The sisters really went through a lot of trouble for us to make it a special day! They are some wonderful ladies!
We had decided that instead of exchanging gifts within our knitting circle, that instead we would give gifts to our hostesses. We had all bases covered, from herbs to candles to cards to even a sweater and treats for Annie:
to some yummies for Molly, the rabbit:
Dear little Molly lacks ears because when she was a wee baby her mama had them for lunch apparently. But she is the cutest sweetest little bunny, so she had to be included in the day's festivities!
Here's a few more pics from the day:
This is the Deb (on the left) and Liz. Deb just joined our group in December and she pitched right in to help me with the still unfinished cat.
Kelly, with Annie of course, and Sister Mary Martha.
Sheri and Liz watching as gifts are opened.
Robyn and Micki look on. I'm not sure what Micki is looking so pensive about, but it is apparently not something that is troubling Robyn.
Sister Mirium and Sister Mary Martha check out their loot.
The food was good, the company was wonderful and I think a good time was had by all.
Thursday, December 14, 2006
It almost makes me crazy that Christmas becomes such an insane time of year and no matter how much I state in the middle of July that I am going to start my shopping NOW, December 14th still finds me scurrying from store to store, grabbing last minute gifts that I have put off, wondering when on earth I can get candy finished off this week because next week I need to start baking and knitting until my fingers cramp on two scarves that I aspire to have completed by Monday. (And wow, was that not the longest sentence EVER???).
So yes, I have been caught up in all of this, giving myself tension headaches and wondering how on earth, I, as one woman, can possibly get it all completed by December 24th. I get some help, but not enough to really lessen the burden and I hate thinking of all of it as a burden anyway. And when did Christmas get so hectic? Why am I stressing out about "Do I have enough gifts for <insert family member's name here> or do I need to buy them something else? And "Oh, I just know I'm going to forget to buy for someone and did I buy enough Christmas cards? Did I forget to post one to someone that I should have?" Why does it all have to be so BUSY? The world will not end tomorrow if something doesn't get completed. And since when did Christmas become about how many gifts you get someone? Why can't it just be simple?
The first Christmas was filled with simplicity. A little baby born in a stable, and shepherds and wise men coming to honor him because they wanted to, and not because they were afraid of what anyone would think if they failed to show up at the party. The wise men gave him gifts and didn't expect anything in return and I'm not sure that anyone brought homemade chocolates or cookies.
I don't think that little baby born in that stable ever intended for us to become so incessantly insane when remembering his birthday. I think maybe what he intended was for us to "be still" and right about now, that sounds like a really good idea to me.
Stillness. Stillness in knowing that no matter what happens that it will all turn out perfectly in the end and it has nothing to do with how much we accomplish at Christmas or any day of the year for that matter. It doesn't matter how much time we spend working, or baking or shopping or parenting, or fretting. Doesn't matter. He loves anyway and it will all work together for good.
Now, how simple is that?
Sunday, December 10, 2006
So, remember the secret? Today is the day and the news is that we now have a permanent pastor!
This whole thing has been so amazing. Our new pastor was our seminarian either three or four years ago before any of the conflict ever began at the church. We all loved him and were sorry when his time with us was over. The feeling was entirely mutual as he hated leaving us, and any Sunday he was free, he would come and pay us a visit. One of these visits occurred amidst all the turmoil and he sat in on one of the Sunday school classes where they were teaching the "Evils" of homosexuals and women pastors. He was very upfront about what he thought of how and what they were teaching (just as a reminder, I am not "for" homosexuality. I am for not judging and loving everyone as Jesus taught us to do).
Despite all the conflict, when our former pastor retired in 2004, he told him that he didn't know how he could leave this congregation. After the split in the church, this man continued to show up on our doorstep from time to time. He was still in the seminary and his presence was still very comforting to us. He was there for the yard sale and for our healing service. I was told by our interim pastor, that the one thing this pastor said he needed forgiveness for during our healing service was that he had been unable to do more (to maybe stop the split from ever occurring). There was really no more that he could have done given the fact that he was still a seminary student.
When we began the Call process, knowing that our interim pastor would be going back into retirement after Christmas, we very much wanted this man, who would be graduating January 2007. We spoke with the Synod who told us it all depended on where he was assigned (he could have been assigned anywhere in Maryland or Delaware). Several weeks ago, we got news from the Synod that he had been assigned to our area and our Call committee jumped at the chance to interview him.
After the interview, the Call Committe unanimously voted to recommend him to become our new pastor, to the Church Council. The council also interviewed Mike and then the council unanimously voted to refer their recommendation to the congregation. Letters went out informing everyone of a special meeting...today. The congregation UNANIMOUSLY voted this pastor to become our new pastor! I literally had tears when the verdict came back only moments later.
God has brought us full circle and I can't help but to look back on all the amazing things he has done. Four years ago, when we first met pastor, no one knew the terrible things that would occur within our particular body of Christ...except for God. He already knew what would happen and he planted a seed in all of us with our new pastor. Three years later, the vote to leave the ELCA fell short...by twelve votes (you know what just now strikes me about that? Please don't think I've gone off the deep end....twelve disciples). The old council resigned and people left the church. Some wonderful people who had felt persecuted before the vote, returned to the church after the split and a new, strong council was formed. The former secretary chose to leave as well, giving me, without a job, an opportunity for a wonderful job. Pastor Phil stepped forward out of retirement, asking to come and be our interim pastor and what an incredible blessing he has been. The church united and we have truly become a family. We had a successful annual yard sale, an abundant VBS and have started up a prayer shawl ministry that has been so well received. Our choir and praise band grew once more, replacing those that have left. Now, our church....Christ's church...has unanimously voted in a new pastor, which to me, truly shows how united we are. We all are on the same page and want the same things and we are allowing God and not people and opinions to guide us.
God is good...all the time.
Friday, December 8, 2006
I am still around, but every spare moment has been spent knitting the kitty for Paula for Christmas. Tomorrow my knitting group has their December meeting and I need help/moral support for assembling this thing! I just knit the last stitch at 11:05pm! I promise to post pictures of the kitty regardless of what it looks like when assembled (I have a retardo kitty phobia).
The holidays have obviously hit as I have been insanely busy and I venture to say that most of you have been too! It's been: work, leave work, run errands (Christmas shopping, stamp buying, grocery shopping etc), come home, clean up house, cook dinner, clean up dinner, knit. That has been my life this week. There is also still more candy to make, cookies to bake, presents to wrap and shopping to complete...oh yes, and we still need to get a tree!
I'll be here when I can be! In the meantime, ya'll be careful out there...some of those shoppers are nuts!
Tuesday, December 5, 2006
As promised, church pictures (whether you care what it looks like or not )
This is the front of the santuary obviously all decked out for Christmas. I also give you a close up of our nativity, which I love:
If one object would come to mind when I think of Pastor Phil, it would be his guitar:
I love to walk in on Sunday mornings to see this sitting up in the front, because I know he is going to play and sing with the children for the Chat with the Children. I am so going to miss this man when he leaves us at the end of the month.
I took a few pictures of our Christmas window dressings and one turned out kind of dark and the other much lighter. I actually like them both and couldn't decide which I prefered.
Okay, as I have resolved to spend the evenings knitting Christmas gifts, I must run!
Monday, December 4, 2006
Yes, I finally did take a day off from blogging yesterday. I had to break the cycle and it took a lot of work for me to do it. I actually wanted to blog despite having worked most of the weekend, but I knew it was simply a whirlpool I was caught up in, so I forced myself not to do it.
Yesterday, we started on the traditional Christmas candy making because nothing says "I love you" to friends more than homemade candy (Well, maybe other things do say it better, but for blogging purposes, it's my story and I'm sticking to it.).
We did chocolate creams, vanilla creams and raspberry creams yesterday, but we still have more to make. They make nice small gifts for people you don't really exchange with, by putting 4-6 pieces in a Christmas-y bag tied with a pretty ribbon.
JJ was on hand to help where Aaron opted to stay outside playing with the
hellionskids up the street. The Brit finally sent these children home because they were determined to wrestle and everytime that happens, someone gets hurt.
I have more potential good news that I'm still keeping a secret until I can clarify the rumor tomorrow. Though I would very much love it to be true, I'm not convinced that it is, so we'll wait on that one.
I'm in a good place at the moment. It seems that when church life is going well, most of the rest of my life goes well too and yesterday, we had 5 people come back to church who had left over a year ago when all the trouble was at its worst. The folks who returned yesterday were not the trouble makers, but maybe some of the folks who followed blindly or simply left before the vote because of all the tension. One of the women said she had been to the "new church" but she couldn't handle hour long sermons and that she didn't like change. I smiled and told her, "Well, we're pretty much the same here." And it's the truth.
A few of us got to talking today during our prayer shawl time about some of the things that went on while the other group was at the church. The weirdness of it all still astounds me and I compare it to being under a controlling dictatorship. Those of us who wanted to stay with the ELCA would be followed around the church if we were trying to talk to someone, and some of the "leaders" of the other group who attended the first service would then stay for the second service, standing in the back of the santuary like guards to make sure that nothing was being said about their plans to leave the ELCA. Those examples are only the surface stuff; the weirdness went much deeper.
Remembering all of this feels like images from another life. Now, when I walk in there on Sunday, there are warm greetings and smiles. There is a feeling of family that was never there before. Everyone is so much more relaxed and happy and financially, we are doing very well (The rumors coming from the other church is that we will be closing our doors the first of the year. Yeah. Okay.). The Holy Spirit is present in that place and it fills me with much peace. The church was decorated for Christmas yesterday and I'll try to get some pictures tomorrow.
Saturday, December 2, 2006
So, tonight we drove over to the park with the new camera to take a couple of pictures. They had luminaries up and burning and all the lights were on, as well as the Christmas tree on the lake:
The Brit took the pics tonight as it has gotten cold and there was no way I was getting out of the car. The boys were along for the ride.
He even looks full of himself, doesn't he?
Upon arriving back home, we took a picture of our house:
I do love all the lit up houses at Christmas!
Friday, December 1, 2006
So, would you believe that I'm having separation anxiety...from my BLOG?? I've been sitting here at the computer for the past hour, arguing with myself.
I feel like I'm forgetting to do something....cats have been fed, meds have been taken...oh, right! Blogging! I don't have to do that today (insert tiny happy dance)! *surfing continues and I find myself going to read the blogs of bloggers I met during the month of November. Some of them have written entries today* But I don't have to blog today. It was not in my plan to blog today. I've just blogged for thirty days....IN A ROW and I don't have to blog today! Wow, it's 11:30...if I were going to blog today, if NaBloPoMo were still going on today, I'd only have thirty minutes left to get a blog submitted....BUT, I don't have that pressure today! No blogging required today...no siree....
Yeah, right.I never said I was mentally stable.
We took the kids to see "Happy Feet" tonight. We all loved it! Adorable! We went in celebration of Aaron making the honor roll! This was my C/D student last year in elementary school! I'm very proud, very impressed and the Brit and I wanted to make a definate big deal about it, so dinner and a movie and he'll get the skateboard he has wanted. Kudos to him!
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Was a sense of pride in knowing that with a little discipline I could indeed blog for 30 days in a row! It is a bit of an accomplishment. Will I continue with a daily blog? Hard to say really. I know that there were days when I was dog tired, and really had little of value to write about and that had I not been involved in this little venture, I would have skipped blogging that night. Then there is also the Christmas is right around the corner thing, and I have much knitting, shopping, wrapping, baking and candy making to do. So, the best I can say is "We'll see."
For the final night of NaBloPoMo I thought I'd give a proper introduction to each of my feline friends. Like people. each one is unique in his or her own special way, but every bit as sweet and entertaining, and I don't know what my life would be like without them. I also want to say that I don't know how Crazy Aunt Purl does it. She has a knack for getting amazing pictures of her cats, so I can only assume that my cats are totally not photogenic, or that Purl's cats are hams for the camera, or that Purl sits around for hours on end just waiting for that pose assured that the cat will not move before the camera is focused. So, as I did not have hours to accomplish this, two of the pictures are old ones because one cat refused to look at me, and Alex decided to avoid the photo shoot altogether.
The matriarch of my feline family is Princess Jasmine (though we just call her Jasmine )
She looks a little drunk here, but that is normally not the case as she is quite regal. Jazzy was the first kitty the Brit and I got together and she was a tiny little ball of fur when she came to live with us. Her name was nearly Mrs. Poofball, but thankfully, I vetoed that idea. Though she was free to a good home, that was where her inexpensiveness ended as two years ago, we nearly lost her due to a uterinary blockage. Even after surgery it was touch and go for awhile, but she pulled through and made a full recovery. Jazz is a talker, especially at night once we go to bed. She wants to chat and make bread on us. The odd thing about her, is that she loves to make bread on the living room pillows and she used her back feet as well, as she straddles the pillow. I have my own theories about that, but we won't go there.
The next in line is Alex (short for Alexandra):
I got Alex when my first feline baby, Sam, was having declining health. I knew Jasmine would miss him terribly (As would I) and I wanted her to have a friend. Alex was a rescue from a vet's office (and this is a pattern that was bound to be repeated). She has one of the most even tempered nature's of any cat I've ever met, but I am her human. She loves attention, but also likes to give it in the way of kisses and head butts. She is famous for being one of our most agile kitties as well, which says a lot as she is not a little thing. She has a hiding place somewhere down in the basement that we have not yet been able to identify, other than to know that it is off the beaten path and she only goes there on occasion. How do we know? Because her snow white feet are suddenly dark gray.
The next to join the family was Jonah:
Jonah was a rescue from the SPCA and as 5 of our 6 cats, he came to us as a kitten. Jonah is best known for being a bit of a klutz (the picture of him? He did that himself. We woke up to finding him this way and he is not meowing in pain, but because he wanted his breakfast) but he has this endearing personality. He loves to knock things off the counter or dresser if he is awaiting a meal. He is the "rub my tummy" kitty in the house as well as one of my two "Look what I caught, mom!" talkers when he is carrying a toy around in his mouth. He is personality plus and has become a bit of a love bug in the past few months.
Hannah came to us next from the vet's office where I once worked:
She was a tiny little thing when she was dropped off at the office and very sick with vomiting and diarrhea. She had to be dropper fed and during her stay there, I fell in love with her. Now an adult, she is my quirkiest feline. She has a sweet disposition, but when she feels she is not getting enough attention, she will nip you (My mother, who has thin skin hates Hannah because she has broken the skin on her twice). She has the loudest little purr, and also likes to talk to toys when she is carrying them around. She hates to hear anyone yell (like when I am calling one of the boys) and she comes running and talking and very upset. Quirky at its finest. She also answers to "Hannah Banana".
Micah was another vet's office rescue:
Another little wee kitten drop off and again, as I tend to do, I fell in love with him. We call him "Special K" which is short for "Special Kitty" because he is not so big in the brains department (Shhh..don't tell HIM that). He has jumping issues and occasionally litter box issues, but he is a sweetheart. He has never bitten, even in play, has the loudest purr of all the cats, and loves to sleep on my feet at night, which I love in the winter. He is almost all black other than his bow tie and a couple of his toes (Lisa has always called him Twinkle Toes because of this).
Finally, once we thought we were finished, Grace came to stay. You can find her complete story here:
She was our stray who decided she was going to live indoors regardless of what it took to get there, and now we wouldn't trade her for anything. Sweet disposition, loves her family and never tries to get out (she knows when she has a good thing going). She is the Brit's cat as she loves to stretch out beside of him in his chair when he is watching television.
So, there you have the six kitties! NaBloPoMo, it has been fun! I've met a few amazing bloggers through this event that I will continue to keep up with. I salute all of you for your success in this venture!
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
People discourage me at times. This may be old news to some of you but I just found out today that some whacko dumped kittens on a road here in Hagerstown...and every one of them was hit by a car, because of course, the person dumped them along side a fairly busy road.
It's just one of those things that makes me want to smack myself upside the head because of my inability to understand. We have a Humane Society...not the best one on the planet, granted, but way better than allowing these innocent little creatures to be killed by a car.
I really hope the individual responsible has trouble sleeping at night. I suppose I should be forgiving them, but it's hard for me to do that when abuse to animals or children is involved (I still struggle with my feelings about my boys' biological parents). KITTENS! They were wee little baby kittens who did not deserve the hand that life dealt them, all because someone couldn't be bothered to take any time to find a suitable and socially acceptable solution.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
1. I'm too tired tonight for anything but random. After not being able to fall asleep last night, I woke up with a headache, had a ton to do at work today, left work to go get JJ at school for a doctor's appointment that took TWO FREAKIN' HOURS because the doctor was running behind. After that, met up with my mother and Aaron because I had promised the kids I would take them out shopping to spend their gift cards from
last Christmasawhile ago, which entailed three different stores. If you've never taken a kid toy shopping...don't. It can take forever to pick out one ten dollar toy. So, after leaving my house at 8:25 this morning, I finally arrived home at 5:40. Tired, I tell ya!
2. The camera arrived today! Have not yet installed the software, so no pics to download yet (Tired!) but very cool that it has arrived!
3. The Brit is my favorite person today for offering to order pizza tonight instead of my cooking. He knew a tired shopper when he saw one.
4. More shopping to come tomorrow....grocery day at Walmart. The fun never ends around here.
5. Paula called tonight and was actually wrapping Christmas gifts. I have bought paper and tags but that is as far as it goes. In fact, her knitted kitty is still not finished and I sat on the couch tonight for three hours, thinking about how I should be knitting, but just didn't have it in me (Tired!). Four Christmas gifts on needles and not a one of them completed.
6. After sleep, tomorrow will be way better.
Monday, November 27, 2006
So, my dear friend, Mandy, managed to capture the essence of my two boys in this picture:
Is that adorable or what? She got several great pics of them, but this is by far, my favorite because it is one of those moments fortunate enough to be caught on camera. Mandy had just positioned them and then told them not to bang heads, which of course, JJ had to do exactly that and Mandy was able to photograph the result.
Speaking of cameras, the Brit ordered our new digital today! What is even better is that it has already been shipped from New York!
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Can someone please tell me how this child can possibly be seven years old?
Here is JJ with little sister, Kaitlyn at Chuck E Cheese just a couple of hours ago. I remember when this little guy came to us at three years old; big brown eyes, chubby cheeks, full of noises and sounds but no words. But even without a vocabulary, this little three year old was full of mischief. If he was able to get the garden hose in his hand, watch out because you were destined to be soaking wet. He was always a problem solver. In this picture, you can see what he calls his "little hand", but let me tell you something; this kid can climb trees, ride a two wheeler, ride a scooter...there really isn't anything that he can't do (and he has no prosthesis as of yet either as he is too young for it and really doesn't need it at this time.)
He had a speech teacher at Head Start when he was four who wanted to discuss with me "alternate means of communication" which translated into "I don't think he is ever going to speak other than the sounds he makes, and with one hand, sign language is not an option, so you need to figure out a way to communicate with this child." I told her it was not necessary. JJ would talk. He was as bright as a new penny and though he could not say "cat" he could make the sound "meow". He would and could talk.
An evaluation at Johns Hopkins speech department and they agreed as well. We needed to get him into some REAL speech therapy, which we did and lemme tell you, the kid took off. He struggles with only one or two sounds now, but is completely understandable all the time. He is excelling in school, and has a wicked sense of humor. He loves the girls (I am already dreading those teenage years) and is a little free spirit.
And as of tomorrow, he is seven.
JJ requested that Kaitlyn help him to blow out the last candle. Isn't is amazing how much they look alike?
Paige takes a ride on the mini ferris wheel.
As does Delaney.
The siblings all together. Aaron actually gave all of his tickets he won playing games to his little sister.
Happy birthday, JJ. Don't grow up too fast.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
I kind of put this little story to the back of my mind since Thanksgiving Day, but apparently it is festering there as I dreamed about it last night.
On Thanksgiving Day, my brother and the sister in law that I blogged about a while back, came over to my mother's as well. The first thing out of her mouth was "I'm still upset about watching my mom's neighbor beat the hell out of his dog." Obviously, this was meant to be a conversation starter. The story was that her parent's neighbor, who is a twenty-two year old alcoholic (I don't know the guy, this is just what she told us), who had beaten the crap out of his girlfriend awhile back, resulting in her leaving, has a Jack Russell Terrier. The little dog apparently got out of this guy's yard on Thanksgiving Day, and the guy spent "an hour" trying to catch it. Once he did catch it, he proceeded to punch it in the face three times, then apologize to everyone who viewed this.
Being who I am, which is a huge advocate of anything with fur, I asked "Did you report it?" The reply from my brother was that they were afraid the guy would then take it out on his inlaws. Does this feel wrong to anyone else? Upon waking up this morning from dreaming about this poor little dog, the thought struck me of "What if it had been a child he was punching?" Would that have changed whether or not this incident would have been reported and if so, why is it different for a dog? Neither animal nor child can defend themselves against someone bigger and stronger than they are, so is it just that a child holds a greater worth than a dog, or would it not matter to these people regardless because the result could still be that the abuser could potentially take it out on his neighbor?
I can totally understand being concerned about this guy taking it out on the neighbor though. Let's face it, we live in a strange world where being involved could possibly, at times, cost us our lives. Think of the stories of the past of someone being in harm's way, screaming for help, and people ignore it because they "don't want to get involved." However, with that being said, I think that attitude is exactly one of the reasons why our country is in the shape it is in today. No one is willing to get involved as there could be repercussions. I am not trying to be self righteous, but I do know for a fact that if this had been my neighbor, #1, I would have hollared at the moment the dog was being pounded instead of being a quiet bystander and #2 if that didn't stop it or possibly even if it did, I would have reported the incident to police and/or the Humane Society. I would prefer to be worried about some vandalism to my home then to wake up one morning and find a little dog beaten to death and knowing I had done nothing to help it.
As a society, we need to stop being so afraid of being involved. We're so often quick to stick our noses in where they don't belong but painfully slow to speak up on behalf of someone unable to take up for themselves. If more people spoke up, we would probably have less abused animals and children, but not wanting to "be involved" causes many to say "Well, it's none of my business anyway" and for a reign of terror to continue for someone.
Some may say, "Well, it's just a dog" but in so many cases, that is only where it starts...abuse with animals can lead to violence with humans.
Friday, November 24, 2006
....that in order to really deep clean a house, you have to tear it up first? I spent part of today Christmas decorating, which leads to cleaning (putting away some things until the Christmas season is over so I can put out Christmas stuff, or in other words, dusting etc), which leads to organizing. Though it is 10:15 at night, I am actually only on a break and plan to do a little more shortly.
Every Christmas season, we do a holiday open house and this year it is on the 29th of December. I'm trying to get some of the fussy cleaning (definition=stuff I only do a couple of times a year) out of the way so I don't have to mess with it next month. Primarily that means cleaning up clutter and my dining room/knitting room is a cluttered mess. That room is my catch all room and it is sadly showing that fact. So, I am currently waiting for the Brit to go up to bed, so I can do a little more work and heaven help me, run a vacuum (an obsession of mine).
But I did get my nativity up today and a few other things and once I have done a clean up, I'll snap some pictures for y'all. Also ventured out mildly into Black Friday shopping! VERY mildly! We hit up The Abundant Garden which is not in or near a mall, so there were no crowds and I was able to pick up some little gifts for the Sisters where we knit. Robyn needed to go to a craft store for card stock, so we did AC Moore, which was a bit more insane, but not too bad. The worst was the woman two ladies ahead of us in line who kept addding items from the counter to her order everytime the poor sales girl had her totalled!
Okay, that's it for now...back to the Cinderella-ing!
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Can I tell y'all how full I am? Still! Dinner was like at 5:00 and I am still stuffed! In other news, the kids are away with the grandparents and a few days of peace has settled over the house. I didn't think they were leaving until tomorrow but when we got home from my mom's place, there was a message asking if they could be picked up tonight. So, that assures my bit of sleeping in tomorrow!
One Thousand Gifts
92. That my cooking ability has improved over the years, though I still don't totally enjoy it, I do enjoy experimenting apparently.
93. For old written words that mean so much to me, even though they make me miss what once was.
94. Chocolate milk
95. Getting to briefly speak with my sister in California today.
96. An apology
97. For jokes about bags in a closet
98. Kitties to watch the Macy's Day Parade with.
99. Slightly warmer weather coming.
100. Looking forward to peaceful Christmas decorating tomorrow.
101. For NOT having to shop on Black Friday
103. For finding mom's missing cat under the sofa.
105. Knowing what the Christmas season is really about.
106. Plans with Robyn tomorrow.
107. For all the blessings I have been given.
108. For being too full to finish my pumpkin pie.
109. Alpaca knitting
110. For God's grace each and every day.
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I think the season has officially opened as they lit the decorations downtown on Monday night:
It's a little blurry...I was trying to drive at the same time while coming home from the Thanksgiving service at church tonight.
I had a very happy surprise today! I was cleaning up the computer at the church (the former secretary never got rid of ANY files and I have been cleaning up that machine for nearly a year now) when I found a file for the employee handbook. Beings I am a member of my church and we are pretty laid back, I have never had any need to read it, but for some reason today I had a little look-see. What I found under Paid Holidays was "Thanksgiving and the day after"! Whoo Hoo! So glad I looked or I would have been there on Friday! Three days of no alarm clock! I'm also thinking the boys are going to go visit grandparents on Friday, so I'll have all day to decorate!
Our absolutely delightful interim pastor (I think I will cry when he goes back into retirement after the first of the year) sang to the kids last Sunday for the Chat with the Children while accompanying himself on his guitar, The Turkey Song. I had never heard it before, but I just loved it:
If God can love TURKEYS,
God can love you... ;
You are a TURKEY,
but I am one too;
So if you're lonely (waaaaaaaooooooooooooo)
or...., if you're blue (wa,aaaa,aaa, oooooooooooo)
just remember friend,
if God can love TURKEYS ... (and surely he can!)
God can Love You!!!
He's such a hoot. He has taken the time to do many different songs with the kids, but our favorite will always be the sheep song:
I Just Want To Be A Sheep
I just wanna be a sheep (baa, baa, baa, baa, baa)
I just wanna be a sheep (baa, baa, baa, baa, baa)
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
I just wanna be a sheep (baa, baa, baa, baa, baa)
I don't wanna be a Pharisee.
I don't wanna be a Pharisee.
I don't wanna be a Pharisee.
'Cuz they're not fair, ya' see.
I don't wanna be a Sadducee.
I don't wanna be a Sadducee.
I don't wanna be a Sadducee.
'Cuz they're so sad, you see.
I don't wanna be a hypocrite.
I don't wanna be a hypocrite.
I don't wanna be a hypocrite.
'Cuz they're not hip with it.
I don't wanna be a goat, nope.
I don't wanna be a goat, nope.
I don't wanna be a goat, nope.
'Cuz they've got no hope, nope.
The thing about this interim pastor is that not only is he a wonderful pastor, he's one of the best men I have ever known. He just knows how to relate to people and he knows how to make people feel good about themselves. He has this amazing sense of humor and is just so laid back. One of the first things he told us about himself is that every night before he says his prayers, he makes up a joke to tell God. He explained that in the same way, parents get a kick out of their children telling them a joke, God must surely feel the same way about us.
We have been so blessed to have this man in our midst for the last nine months (I can't believe it's been that long!) but for me, he is just tangible proof of God's love for us. I am very thankful tonight for both this pastor and a God that is good...all the time.
Wishing all of you a safe and happy Thanksgiving tomorrow. Regardless of what your religious or spiritual beliefs are, take the time to name aloud the things in your life you are thankful for.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
I have a secret. I have a secret. I wish I could tell ya'll what it was, but I don't want to jinx it in any way. Look for big news on December 10th! I actually don't really believe in the power of a "jinx" but I do believe in people who may want to make trouble (none of my regular readers and none of my friends. Ya'll I will probably tell face to face but this is nothing I am willing to put out in blogland until it is all finalized).
To all my fellow bloggers that I read, my deepest apologies. I am way behind on reading but am hoping to catch up over the holiday weekend. This week has been busy and today I was barely on the computer due to kitty knitting and grocery shopping. Tomorrow, I have to journey to Frederick to Costco as we buy a lot of our meat in bulk to freeze as it is so much cheaper to get it there. Jarrit's 7th birthday is Monday, so we are having his party at Chuck E Cheese on Sunday. Yes, lots going on!
It's also about time to break out the Christmas decorations (and take down the Halloween decorations. heh.) and that will probably take place on Friday as the kids should be away and I in no way go out shopping on Black Friday. I did that twice in my life and then gave it up for Lent....and for the rest of my life. The last time I ventured out on Black Friday, I only went to one store....The Walmart! They had televisions on sale and as the Brit and I were just starting out, he wanted a small television for the bedroom. I had to get up at 5:00am, which goes against all I believe in, to be there for the doors to open. It was madness and mayhem beyond my wildest dreams. It took nearly twenty minutes to get to the back of the store where the televisions were (generally about a minute walk tops) and when I got one, some chick stole my cart! There was no way I could carry the thing, so I stood in the middle of the crowds guarding my item until I found a sales person who found me a cart. By the time I finally got out of that store, I was cured from ever shopping on the day after Thanksgiving again! No sir-ee, I save my shopping for late at night once the mall starts staying open till 11:00, as fewer people are out and about then.
One Thousand Things
71. A secret!
72. God's amazing grace and His constant watch over us.
73. For my mom
74. a relaxing night knitting while watching "House"
75. Friends who make me laugh
76. A good medical report back on Paula's son, Dane
77. For knowing the truth even when other people would lie about us
79. bedroom slippers with soles that I can wear out if I'm not going any place I have to get out of the car.
80. Clean clothes
81. Anticipation of a new camera
82. Christmas surprises
83. Sugar Snap Peas
84. Scented candles
85. An amazing picture Mandy took of the boys
86. Hair compliments from my hubby and my mom
87. Crazy Aunt Purl's hair story week
88. A warm down comforter
89. Sunshine on crisp mornings
90. Being God's daughter
Gee, only 910 more to go. I'm in so much trouble.....
Monday, November 20, 2006
With this being "Hair Story Week" over at Crazy Aunt Purl's place, I have a little story of my own. Ya'll know what my mood has been like with the pms from hell (Feeling better today thankfully), so last night, I headed out to Shell's so she could color and highlight my hair. I found my first gray hair on my 25th birthday and have been coloring it ever since, and I was way past due as the gray roots were really showing. I had decided on the highlighting as well because I felt that I needed a change.
Got to Shell's and we headed out to the drugstore to pick up color. I go for anything that has auburn in it, so after much price comparing, we finally settled on one. Highlight stuff was a bit foreign to me as I had never done this to myself, so we picked out one that should put chestnut highlights in my hair. Everything else they had was blonde and I didn't want to go that drastic.
My hair is VERY thick and despite the fact that I recently had a bunch of my length cut off, I always need two boxes of color to get the job done. Shell had done that before, so that was the easy part, but during that process she made the remark of "I think you're going to have to come back another night for the highlights as we are coloring this. I don't think we should do both on your hair in one night." Well, me and the pms...not so much agreeing.
I dug out the highlight instructions while the color sat on my head and insisted I could not find anything stating not to highlight after coloring. Shell called her mom (who highlights Shell's hair) and her mom consulted with a beautician friend and called us back. The consensus was not to highlight the same night. I think at that point Shell was sure I would come to my senses though she boldly stated that she would do whatever I wanted. I'm not sure she was expecting my answer of "We're doing it."
My hair has always been my hair. I perm it, color it, cut it short, grow it long, etc. My feeling is that if I screw it up, it grows back and I'm gonna do what I want to do with it. Period. Minimal fear for me, which was a good thing as Shell was more than slightly frightened. I continued to cajole and assure her that no matter what happened to my locks, it would be all my fault. I even offered to sign a waver dissolving her of all responsibility. We highlighted. She was sparse at first, but I kept checking the mirror and directing her as to where to put more. It was so funny (we had of course, already rinsed out the color crap, and completely dried my hair before using the highlighting kit) as the highlight stuff goes on blue so you can see where you put it. I was sure I was gonna resemble one of those little old ladies with blue hair when it was all said and done.
The wait before rinsing is 45 minutes, and during that time we decided that the worse case scenario would be that it wouldn't show up at all on my freshly colored hair. Shell kept trying to peer through the streaks of blue to see if anything was happening (obviously she was unable to see anything) and about that time, I found some fine print in the instructions that said "Can be applied on freshly colored hair." HA! So we rinsed and it showed up and I like it. There are moments I think the highlights look slightly orange, but I think that is just me getting used to it.
Please ignore the fact that my makeup is gone for the day and my eyes look like they want to sleep. What do ya think of the highlights?
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Since it took me forever to get godaddy to work for me tonight and given the fact that it is 11:25 at night and I need to be heading for bed, the hair story will have to wait until tomorrow. However, I was not to be out done by NaBloPoMo!
Hope you all had a wonderful weekend and I'll talk at you tomorrow!
Saturday, November 18, 2006
I really have nothing constructive to say today as it has been a zinger of a day. The pms is so bad, that in one day alone, I have cleaned like a maniac in the morning, became very sensitive by the afternoon, have burst into tears upstairs in my bedroom because no one understands me and have been barely tolerant the rest of the day. Ugh. Why does the whole pms thing get worse after 40?
A couple of years ago, I went on 50mg of Zoloft because the pms was so bad. I would have crying jags that lasted for hours and would feel so depressed I could barely get out of bed. The medication helped tremendously, but now at 40, the symptoms seem to be worsening once more. I'm not sure if I want to see about upping the dosage because some have said that it is harder to lose weight on Zoloft.
I'll just be glad when my monthly friend arrives so that the tidal waves of emotion will once again calm.
Friday, November 17, 2006
I will say that the two words in my title really have nothing to do with each other for the purposes of this blog entry. The "lights" part of it, is because our church got beautiful new lights this week in memory of a member's husband who passed away nearly a year ago:
They change the whole look of the sanctuary and makes it so much warmer.
The "theater" part is because tonight, Robyn and I took the boys to see "Cinderella" with Potomac Playmakers. Playmakers is the oldest theater group minimally in Hagerstown (not sure on the stats for the rest of the country) as it is in its 81st year. I have done several shows with them in the past, including "Barnum", "Oliver", and "Where's Charley?". They've always been a group to be a part of; it's just that since I've had kids, theater has taken a backseat until they are older. I'm looking forward to returning to it one day.
But, my very good friend, Tod, played the part of Prince Charming tonight:
Sorry for the darkness of the photos but my digital camera hates the dark....big chicken.
The boys seemed to enjoy the show as their first theater experience and it was nice to see something local again (actually, Sight and Sound was my first theater experience in quite awhile for someone who once did back to back shows! I miss it).
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Ever have one of those out of control times of your life, when you know you need to reign in control of yourself or else you are going to crash hard, but yet you still can't seem to get a grip? Welcome to my world.
The last few
daysweeks I have not been able to get enough sugar or bread into my diet. It has been particularly bad the last two days, but I think the increase in bad food behavior may be related to PMS. Whenever I go into one of these binges, I really try to work it out as to why I do this. I can trace back some history which includes an early childhood trauma, followed by nearly being raped when I was 18. Ever since that time, I have not been comfortable with anyone noticing my body in a positive way, because I just didn't trust men. I'm just not sure of how much sense that makes now that I am married and have put most of those issues behind me. The weight continues to be a constant battle.
Then I get myself into this quandry about weight loss surgery (wls). The thought of it terrifies for a couple of reasons, one of them probably qualifying me for long term therapy. That reason would be that I like food and once you have wls, you can't really eat much of anything (for the record, I am not generally an overeater, but I tend to reach for the wrong things. I have an incurable sweet tooth or in my case teeth.). Then I have to try to analyize what my relationship to the food really is. I know I am a stress eater, but I have trouble realizing that my life indeed is pretty stressful. I burn the candle at both ends but I don't really think about it until the end of the day when I am wondering why I feel so tired. (For example, today started off with work, and assembling light fixtures, then leaving there to go to the blasted toy store to accomplish all Christmas shopping for the kids, then to Chuck E Cheese to pay the deposit on JJ's bday, then home to vacuum both up and downstairs, wash dishes, then go to pick up Aaron at school, then help JJ with homework, dinner, then both kids to Kid's Club and then I have to keep them with me at praise band rehearsal while they try to drive me insane. That is a pretty typical weekday for me.). But I don't think I realize stress in the midst of stress because when it becomes insane, I go to find my loyal buddy, food. As I am so often insanely busy, the quickest things to grab to eat are not generally the healthiest.
The other thing I think about with wls is that it scares me. What if something goes wrong? Then there is the psychological part of "This is stupid and a cop out....you can lose the weight yourself if you would just stay motivated!" But my motivation comes and goes. When it is coming in full force, all is good. I'm working out, I'm eating well, and in turn I'm feeling great. But then the tide turns and when motivation goes, I come crashing down. Workouts cease right along with any care as to what I'm putting into my mouth. I eat when I'm not hungry and even eat more than I generally would at a time. Then any weight I have managed to lose returns and brings along a few of its buddies.
And I've been doing this since I was a kid. That is what is so discouraging. I was on diets in 3rd grade. In high school, I lost nearly all of my weight but was still convinced that I was fat...and eventually, the scale started inching back up again.
Would wls stop this? Would it make me feel so good that food no longer needed to be my best bud? Is it a trade off indeed or would I wind up mourning things that I could no longer have?
I just know that something has to give somewhere.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
So, today, bus trip! It was absolutely awesome. I have seen one other production at Sight and Sound several years ago; "Noah", but I had forgotten the incredible theatrical experience it is. This was, of course, the story of the first Christmas and you just have to see it to believe the magnitude of it. The sets are amazing. Live, on stage, we had: horses, camels, llamas, sheep, dogs, goats, doves and parrots. We had actors dressed as angels descending from places in the ceiling. By the end of the production, I had tears in my eyes.
I wish that I could show you pictures of the production itself, but of couse, that is prohibited. But I did take a few others outside.
This was at the entrance to the theater, as well as this:
and once inside there was also plenty of Christmas eye candy:
The above is an "Advertisement" of their next show. which begins in May and is the story of Adam and Eve. It looks amazing and we plan to go.
After the show, it was back on the bus, heading to Shady Maple Smorgasesbord for dinner. I didn't mention that for our trip, we were in the middle of Pennsylvania Dutch County, and it was wonderful to see the horse drawn buggies everywhere we looked. Dinner was good, way too filling and nearly sent a few of our guys into a coma:
They napped while the girls took in the ginormous gift shop downstairs.
It was a lovely day. I got to catch up with friend and fellow blogger Stratcat, who was also on the trip as well as with some other church members that I didn't know that well before today.
A wonderful day. I recommend it to anyone.