Saturday, December 31, 2011

Scenes from December

Here are a few pictures from December.  
I didn't take as many this year.
There was something in me that just needed to let be.

We get into it around here, and it gets all over us.

None of these children are mine, but none need to be for me to love this picture.
That smiley one in the middle...she's ours.
We celebrated our 11th anniversary and escaped for three days.

Church friends...I have visions of these girls in youth group together.
The stomach flu invaded our house during Christmas break.
Then, Ella.
I am so thankful for modern medicine and iv's.
Ella spent part of a night in the ER.
She was a happy kid the next day. 
It took me much longer to get over.
Our Christmas was a quiet one.
Exactly what we needed.

With Talia's tin foil wrapped gifts that she picked up around the house.
Uncle Travis got a piece of paper and Bruce got a previously viewed When Harry Met Sally dvd.
We are putting 2011 to bed tonight.
I happily wave it goodbye.
Sleep in heavenly peace old year.
Someone recently reminded me that people still kiss at midnight on December 31st.
I had forgotten that.
I'm setting my alarm clark to wake up and kiss Bruce tonight.
2012 is already off to a great start with that planned. :)
What are you doing tonight?

Friday, December 23, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Celebrate Good Times

I don't know where to begin, so let's pretend we're having coffee together.
I'll pour you a hot cup of Sumatra.
I'm a sipper and I'll have to get up and microwave mine a half dozen times during the course of our time together...just so you know.
There have been many things to celebrate in the past week or so.
Thanksgiving Day was a meaningful repeat of delivering meals with Bruce's family.
 We were also able to spend part of the day with even more family.

Family we laugh with.
 We laugh a lot with them. Is there a better compliment than that?
I fully intended to shop Black Friday...but I decided that sleep was worth more to me.
Late morning I ran to Home Depot with a Senior Elf and an Elf in Training for lights.
 We also spent a day at a Jost Family reunion.
I would venture to say that a fourth of them were able to make it.
I kid you not.
The Jost tribe is a fertile one.
We also celebrated one of Bruce's co-workers with an indoor luau for his up and coming retirement. 
Isn't his wife beautiful? 
I want to be her when I grow up.
And of course we had a couple of birthdays to celebrate.
Some of you were right, and some of you weren't. :)
And now we've come through one season of celebrating and are looking ahead to Christmas.
Our tree has been up for a week, but the ornaments just came out of the box yesterday.
I'm having a hard time getting my Christmas motor going this year.
I find myself identifying with the word "weary" to a fault.
I am wearing weary too well.
It's starting to feel too known.

Just a few days ago I read these verses in the Message:
Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me---watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly.  Matthew 11:28-30
So, I am going to get away with Him for a bit because I need a real rest.
To recover my life.
To watch how He does it.
Walking and working...
To learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
To celebrate His birth, and a life renewed, to live freely and lightly.
Merry Christmas, friends.
I hope to see you soon.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Which is Which? {Happy Birthday}

Happy Birthday to my husband Bruce and his brother, Travis.
Care to guess which is which?
I'll tell you tomorrow.
When I do a long catch up post.
It feels like forever since I've been here with you.
And I miss you.
But today I'm wrapping gifts and eating cake.
You know, important stuff.
See you soon.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

30 Thankfuls

In no particular order...
Here is my thankful list.
Bruce, Ella and Talia are a given.
Here are the next 30 lovelies that came to my mind after them...

 1. Greek yogurt. Why has this only come into my life in the past year?
 2. Ella's "Morning, Mom" every. single. day.
 3. Friends who know when your love tank needs to be filled up.
 4. Texting.
 5. Long sleeved t-shirts from the Gap.
 6. Candy corn.
 7. Peanuts.
 8. Candy corn mixed with peanuts.
 9. Ruffles
10. Sonic happy hour.
11. Skype
12. The smell of Ella and Talia's heads right after a bath.
13. Chicken Caeser Wraps with croutons.
14. Adele.
15. Peanut butter.
16. Chocolate.
17. Peanut butter dipped in chocolate.
18. Heated mattress pads.
19. Mulled cider candles from the Wal-Marts. :)
20. People who laugh easily
21. the Message Bible
22. Helium.
23. Limes mixed with Dr. Pepper
24. Fireplaces lit.
25. Nutella
26. White sandy beaches
27. Cartwheels in the living room
28. Books
29. Etsy
30. My Pastor and his Wife.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you wherever you are reading this.
What kind of lovely are you thankful for this year?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Hello Monday

Hello coffee and conversation with a friend passing through.

Hello giggling girls.
Hello vacation from work, school, and all things routine.
Hello memories to be made.

Hello making lists and checking them twice.

Hello neighbors who share.
Hello sleeping in.

Hello reunion made up of Josts too many to name.

Hello hand holding. 
Hello Monday....I've been waiting for you.

Linking up with Lisa Leonard today.

Friday, November 18, 2011


"What I'm interested in seeing you do is:
sharing your food with the hungry,
inviting the homeless poor into your homes,
putting clothes on the shivering ill-clad, 
being available to your own families.
Do this and the lights will turn on,
and your lives will turn around at once."

Isaiah 58:7-8
The Message

Thursday, November 17, 2011

PinterTest Kitchen: Ginger Cookies

Jessica held another PinterTest Kitchen this month...two weeks ago.
I'm totally on top of it like that.
So today, when I made Ginger Cookies, I thought I would post it next month, but then I decided I couldn't wait.
Oh. My. Word. These are so good.
I rolled them in Sugar in the Raw, which puts them in the out of this world category.
And bonus! They smell better than any Fall candle I've ever owned, making my entire house smell wonderful.
Bake some soon.
These totally passed the test!
Click here for the recipe.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Baby Names {we are not having a baby}

Talia brought home her singing assignment for the 
preschool Christmas program last week.

All of these wonderful names caught my attention even though naming 
anything (including a dog, apparently) is not in my future. 
I just love to name people.
And dogs.
And cars.
 I love finding out what someone has named their newborn.
Don't you?
That was my favorite thing about being pregnant...the thrill of talking names. 
So if you're talking baby names, I'm just a wee bit jealous. 
Not jealous enough to get pregnant, but all too eager to play the name game.

Let's start with girls...I could kick myself now, that I never had a Meryl. I know. I know. You're thinking Meryl? Yes, as in Streep. I had a Grandpa named Merrill, and he would have loved having a great granddaughter named after him. 
I also currently love Dane (the spelling would change)and Anya.

Boy names have always been tough for me, but as soon as we found out we were having girls, I didn't give much thought to them. Bruce tried to talk me into Axel during both of my pregnancies.  I finally got so worried about his obsession for the name (Axl Rose) that I made him promise me that if I died in childbirth, Talia's name would not be Axel. 
He was that serious about the name---boy or girl.
But today...if I had to choose a boy name...maybe Axel. 
I kind of like it now. 
It's grown on me.
But don't tell Bruce. 
 Because seriously...
I couldn't pull the trigger and give the name Axel to any... 
Sweet Child of Mine.
Maybe I could have a... 
Sweet Dog of Mine.
Most likely the name Axel is perfect for that...
 Sweet Van of Mine.
Nothing says "Take me home" like a van named Axel, does it?
That's what I thought.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Anything But Strong

Talia was happy to see Saturday come.
She wasn't alone.
When I woke up this morning I sort of exhaled.
I had the kind of week where there were several days in a row that I couldn't make sense of anything.
In my weakness He is strong.
 I couldn't express myself well. In my weakness he is strong.
I knew what I was trying to say. In my weakness he is strong.
I certainly knew how I felt: tired, weak, anything but strong.
 I couldn't get my thoughts and emotions to present themselves into anything anyone else could understand.
This morning I woke up and still felt weak. In my weakness he is strong.
But I was at peace.
I laughed so much today.
I cooked and prayed.
 And ate by candlelight.
I am held together by His strength when nothing, including me, makes sense.
That realization was the gift of this Saturday.
He is far too good to me.
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