Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas blessings thus far

( picture of the nativity at our church )

What a busy week we have had in our little corner of the world.  To start out, a week ago Sunday, my daughter who has severe food allergies, suffered a reaction to breathing in some powdered milk I was using in a recipe for the boys.  It was quick and severe enough that I had to give her the epi pen.  We then spent the next couple of hours in the local ER.  In that time, I had time to think.  First, I was of course very thankful for the miracle of  a drug that is in the epi pens.  I was of course thankful for her being able to breathe once again.  But I experienced something else. I was able to see Jesus in a dear friend.  I have considered this friend a friend since I met her but she became an angel to us that night.  My husband had posted a quick request of prayer on facebook  due to us going to the ER.  He stayed home with our boys.  My friend didn't ask, she just showed up in the ER to sit with us.  She knows her way around an ER from spending much time with her husband who has a failing heart and is waiting for a donor heart himself.  She knows what it is to just sit in a hospital.  She also knew better than to ask if I wanted her to come up.  I would have said no, I'm fine.  I could be trying to move a mountain and refuse help if it was offered.  I am just that stubborn.  I had stumbled coming into the ER with Lily Rose that night and sprained my ankle.  The meds in the Epi Pen raise your heart rate and can make a child of less than 40 pounds bounce off the walls.  Because my friend was there, she was able to walk my daughter up and down the hall which is something I couldn't do because of my ankle and play with her in a different way than old mom.  Because she was there, it allowed me to sit quietly and absorb the emotions going through  my head and heart. Because when you have to give your child life saving meds, you need time to gather your thoughts.  My friend showed me Jesus that night by simply being there.  It makes me wonder how many opportunities we miss of showing others Jesus.  So my first two blessings are of course that my little girl is OK and for my friend Kathy for being there.
Our blessings continued with a wonderful time of spending time with family on Christmas Eve.  I hear so many complain about family gatherings, but on this side of the family it is normal to be together  and we have fun even with each others quirks  We  left there to get ready for Christmas Eve Mass at our local parish.  The church looked beautiful as we entered to candle light and enjoyed beautiful music. Jesus had very humble beginnings but I love that we pull out all the stops to celebrate the birth of our savior.  I think it is just how it should be.
Christmas morning was a blessing to see my children enjoy being spoiled.  We don't do big gifts but they are always happy.   I think a smiling, laughing child might just be music to God's ears.  I loved seeing my 11 year old and my 13 year old help their little sister play her new game without being asked.  This is not the norm, I can assure you.  But for the day, it was as if it was.
We went to my parents that night and enjoyed Christmas with them.  It is always a blessing to watch my kids play with their cousins. I have so many fond memories playing with my cousins growing up and I am so thankful that my kids to have a relationship with their cousins too.
And lets not forget that for us Catholics, Christmas is not over yet.  So I am going to enjoy the rest of Christmas break with my kids and husband  and enjoy the blessings of our family.
Wishing you and your family a blessed Christmas season and a blessed new year.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

right over their heads

I was determined to make a  gingerbread house with my oldest 2 this Christmas.  This is something I have planned on in the years past and just never got around to doing it.  This year was it, I said.  After the house was ready, we decorated with our picked out buys of candy from the local dollar tree store.  I think it looks good, I tell the boys.  Then my middle one looks at me and says with the straightest of faces, "mom, it looks like a waste of perfectly good candy to me"  Whoosh, right over their heads.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

family outing

A picture from a family trip to a local pumpkin patch all decked out for Christmas.  We enjoyed a live nativity, Christmas music, beautiful homemade ornaments and decorations.  And some very cute sheep and donkeys.  I plan on taking my youngest back this Friday for a Christmas field trip.  Kids can paint ornaments in a make and take.  On a side note it took about 15 shots to get 2 good pictures to choose from for our cards. 
What are your plans for these last 2 weeks in advent before Christmas?  I feel some baking coming on when school is out for break.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

advent blessings.

Sometimes we talk to our kids and we don't always know if they are getting it.  This is even more true I am finding in the teenage years; my oldest is 13.  We try to make them aware of others and give them the tools for a kind, giving heart.  But sometimes they do not even seem to be listening.  I have been overjoyed as we have done our nightly Hail Mary prayers in honor of someone.  It  has been the kids choice as I mentioned in my previous post  on who to pray for.  They have taken that responsibility and made me very proud.  Maybe they are paying attention to me and those around them.  They have said  prayers  for very real needs in our community and for things and people around them.  I have always said that kids don't get the credit they deserve, and I will say it again.  Many times it is just assumed that  something or a situation is over their head.  Children and teenagers are much smarter than we give them credit for also.
Share those requests of your community with them.  No, we don't want to put too much on them, but I truly believe if we teach them to take it to God, it isn't putting a burden on them.  It is simply practicing what we preach.
Blessings this 2nd Sunday in Advent.