Advent Conspiracy and How I am Like a Christmas Tree

I'm not sure when trimming the Christmas tree dropped out of the top ten Christmas activities in my opinion. Somewhere along the line I lost the magic of transforming the green bush into the sparkling personification of Christmas. It may have been, now that I think about it, back in high school when I realized my mom was tricking my friends and me into doing "her" job by offering pizza and cookies. It was a brilliant ploy, and one that…

Christmas Books: Thomas Kinkade’s On Christmas Eve

One of my guilty pleasures each Christmas season is to devour (yes, that's the appropriate word) a few light and fluffy Christmas novels from the display at Barnes and Noble. It's a ritual each November: when it's still too early to pull out the decorations and the first peppermint mocha hits the counter at Starbucks, I survey all the new Christmas tales and begin making my list.┬áThis year the book first on my list is the newest installment of Thomas…

My Christmas Card

Have you wondered where my Christmas card is this year? I have to admit that my Christmas Card history is shaky at best. So many years have come and gone, years when the hustle and bustle just hustles the plan to send cards right out the window. But most years I do try to get that yearly note out to family and friends. Not this year. This year I intentionally didn't send my cards. Know why? Because they cost roughly…

Christmas Lunch

Do you know what this picture is? It is the staff of my church, Christ Fellowship, gleaning in the fields. Yes, gleaning. The mechanical harvester has gone through, and now the gleaners are handpicking corn and other vegetables that are left. What they pick will be donated to local food banks. Know what's incredibly inspiring about this? On this particular day, the staff was celebrating Christmas together. It was their annual "staff luncheon" done in a whole new way. Genius.…

What I am thankful for this year…

[caption id="attachment_1455" align="alignnone" width="199" caption="Is there anything better than giggly girls in onesies around the Christmas Tree?"][/caption] When I was a little girl it seemed as if there were long stretches of time in which nothing exciting ever happened. Sometimes those stretches of time were heaven itself: summer vacations lying on my back of the hill in my front yard, or the winter afternoons between Christmas and New Years. At other times, those long stretches seemed interminable, such as the…

Are you ready to do Christmas in a whole new way?

What if the countdown to Christmas didn't make you groan? What if you looked forward to it again, like you did when you were a kid? What if, somehow, Christmas brought some good news to the world instead of stress and debt and extra holiday pounds? If that sounds good to you, you need to join a conspiracy. Advent Conspiracy is a movement to replace the consumerism of Christmas with the good news of hope. It is about giving our…

How many minutes do you have?

Today has been a day of small minutes: no big blocks of time, just disconnected moments to ponder. I could easily feel as if this was a frittered away day, but I'm not going to. For instance, I got to spend an hour in my car with the windows down, reading a good book and making a few plans for the coming year. An hour of time all to myself...lovely. I know that sounds like a big block of time,…

Wrapping up Christmas

These days of stillness between Christmas and New Year's always catch me by surprise. I'm unprepared for the state of suspension, not quite sated with Christmas and yet not ready to embrace the freshness of the New Year. I attempted, this year more than most, to be intentional about our Christmas. Compared to previous years I believe I made progress, though not as much as I had hoped. Rather than move on to the New Year's thoughts and plans, I…

Not so Silent Night

We just got back from Christ Fellowship's Christmas Eve service. We planned to go to the latest one, 8 PM, so that it would feel like Christmas Eve. I don't have the time or energy to write all I thought about tonight, and you are pretty busy as well...no time to read. So in random order, a few thoughts. I love our choir. I was watching them worship tonight. Wow. We happen to have, in our choir, several people with…

Christmas surprises

This is what David was holding when I met him for lunch today. And the first words out of my mouth were "You went to Apple? Cool!" There is just something wrong with that.

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