Monday, December 2, 2019

Weekly Gratitude Journal


What a full and blessed Thanksgiving week we had! I love the wild, crazy, loud, chaotic times we have when our whole family gets together. It is never social media perfection, that's for sure. We were reminiscing around the Thanksgiving table about the time one grandchild, who shall remain nameless, had a full blown Thanksgiving meltdown at the table simply because the jam fell off her dinner roll.  We also observed together that our whole family are fast eaters. We have not perfected the art of lingering over our holiday meals. I love us, imperfect as we are, and I am so very, very thankful for this family and all of the multitude of  blessings that God has given us.

 ****************
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks, 
piling up gratitude day by day in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)
#12,723-#12,744

11-25-19-
-funny texts from my daughter about her attempts to wean our grandson from his pacifier
-God's provision for all of our needs
-friends to bear one another's burdens with

11-26-19-
-the promises of Isaiah 53 -by His stripes we are healed!
-the dear oldest couple in our church who intercede for us, our family and our church
-my guy taking me out to dinner and then watching a Christmas movie with me

11-27-19-
-the promises of Isaiah 54-no weapon formed against us will prosper!
-a quiet morning of baking and prep for our family Thanksgiving dinner
-a fun family evening at Zoo Lights





11-28-19-
-our granddaughters 8th birthday!
-cold, but clear weather so the two youngest grandsons could play in the backyard
-our family and the multitude of God's blessings in our lives

11-29-19-
-a quiet day home alone to clean and putter and decorate for Christmas
-pjs all day long!
-my husband getting to take our oldest son-in-law and oldest grandson to the football game with him

11-30-19-
-this beautiful cold and frosty last day of November
-ten year old granddaughter facetiming me with questions for a school history paper about what life was like when I was young, (she had never heard of encyclopedias before!)
-a bouquet of foraged greens for a centerpiece on our dining room table

12-1-19-
-the first Sunday of Advent-remembering that Jesus came and that He is coming again
-a really good post Thanksgiving Sunday at church
-our church praying together for healing for a family member

still following,

Saturday, November 30, 2019

A CHRIST Centered Countdown to CHRISTmas Idea


(Today is the first Sunday of Advent so I am reposting this Advent/ Christmas idea. It's not too late for you to start! Many young families in our church began a tradition of counting down the days to Christmas with their children in this way.  The tags are easy to make with whatever you have on hand and the Names of Jesus and scriptures I used are included below. )
Thanksgiving is now past and if we aren't careful Christmas will be here before you know it with the CHRIST of CHRISTmas forgotten in the midst of all of the holiday hustle and bustle. Some years ago I desired to find a simple way to make sure I was focused on Jesus, the reason for the season, during the busy month of December. I had an idea to countdown to Christmas using twenty five names of Jesus found in the Bible.  I made simple little tags with the name on one side and the scripture where that title is found on the other side. Starting on the first of December, each morning through Christmas day I would hang one of the tags on a branch I'd gathered from the yard, (eventually I bought a mini faux tree for that purpose). This simple ritual helped me to focus for a few moments each day on what that name reveals to me about Jesus.  This is a great advent activity to do with your whole family - I wish I'd thought of it before all my children where grown!  But, my grandchildren enjoy helping me when they are at our house.   (Join me for the rest of this post on Sunday, December 1st at Woman to Woman Ministries, where each Sunday I share a bit of Sunday Soul Food!)

still following,





Monday, November 25, 2019

Weekly Gratitude Journal


It's Thanksgiving week! I love Thanksgiving. I love gathering with our loved ones. I love the cooking and the baking and the feasting together. I love that we have a national holiday to give thanks. But, thanksgiving to God should be our lifestyle everyday, not just one day a year. I pray that you will all have a blessed Thanksgiving day, but most of all, that all of our hearts would overflow with thanks to God each and every day.
 ****************
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks, 
piling up gratitude day by day in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)
#12,702-#12,722

11-18-19-
-a specific answer to prayer
-a few minutes of quiet and prayer before waking the grandkids up for school
-the gorgeous sunrise and view of the Columbia River, the foothills and Mt. Hood 
wrapped in ribbons of fog with the fall colors on the trees peeking through 
as I drove our two middle granddaughters to school
11-19-19-
-an unexpected blessing
-my husband's dental problem that turned into us finding a solution regarding dental insurance
-food, laughter, learning and praying together with our small group

11-20-19-
-the neighbors huge weeping willow tree all golden yellow
-family group texts about Thanksgiving plans
-a day with nothing pressing on my schedule so I could take my husband to his dental appointments since he couldn't drive himself while on pain meds

11-21-19- 
-a successful dental surgery 
-holiday plaid pillowcases for under $4
-always God provides for us

11-22-19-
-our oldest granddaughter stopping by to see us for a few minutes
-her first job interview
-our beautiful Pacific Northwest

11-23-19-
-God's provision even through finding sales on Christmas gifts for our family
-Romans 8-nothing can separate us from God's love
-a pot of homemade Zuppa Toscana soup

11-24-19-
-early Sunday morning texts from my husband-
(thank You, God that he was well enough to preach an awesome message today!)
-hanging out with our granddaughter  between church services
-communication that clears the air

still following,

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Peace Be Still


With Thanksgiving coming up this week and Christmas right on its heels, to-do lists can be long, calendars can be full and budgets can be stretched. I'm typing these words as much for myself as for you."Peace, be still!" In Mark 4:39 Jesus spoke these words to the stormy wind and waves and immediately "there was a great calm, a perfect peacefulness".

At the beginning of the approaching busy holiday season, I am choosing to speak these words over my own mind and heart, my own thoughts and emotions, "Peace, be still!"

We don't have to let a storm of anxiety or frustration or grumpiness rage on uncontrollably within. We have the authority, like Jesus, to speak to the storm and tell it to cease.  (Join me for the rest of this post on Sunday, November 24th at Woman to Woman Ministries, where each Sunday I share a bit of Sunday Soul Food!)

still following,




Monday, November 18, 2019

Weekly Gratitude Journal


We had the three middle grandkids all weekend-our oldest daughter's two girls and our middle daughter's youngest son. Our granddaughters are back home now and our grandson is going home this evening.The house is cleaned and tidied after letting the grandkids camp out in the living room together and cover the dining room table with craft projects. I think a good time was had by all. Now Nana needs a bubble bath and an early bedtime!

 ****************
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks, 
piling up gratitude day by day in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)
#12,676-#12,701

11-11-19-
-Veteran's Day! Thank You, God for those who serve/ have served our country
(my dad)
-taking the day off together since we'll have three of the grands here on our usual day off
-taking our two youngest grandkids on a walk on this beautiful day

-a delicious dinner at our youngest daughter's 

11-12-19-
-thank you God, for an unexpected blessing
-catching up with a friend I haven't heard from in a while
-pork chops in mushroom gravy. Yummy.
-God's provision 

11-13-19-
-a friend coming to see me
-a beautiful autumn sunset on my walk
-God who works out the details on our behalf

11-14-19-
-God working out today's busy schedule
-our neighbor who leaf blows our whole cul-de-sac
-a single, large, golden colored maple leaf floating in the air
-the workers and volunteers who keep our neighborhood park clean
-a powerful night of worship and prayer

11-15-19-
-a quiet Friday date day morning before getting the three middle grands for the weekend
-dinner with the kiddos at Spaghetti Factory
-doing crafts together
-watching old movies on the new Disney app

11-16-19-
a good night's sleep for all of us
-an afternoon snack for the grandkids of cookies warm from the oven and a glass of cold milk
-ending a fun and noisy day with with the grands by reading a Bible story, worship and prayer

11-17-19-
-a fabulous message at church this morning
-our youngest daughter and the grandbabies surprising us by visiting our church
-the grandkids and I spending Sunday afternoon in our pajamas

still following,

Saturday, November 16, 2019

The Lord Directs Our Steps


There have been times when I've questioned the direction of the Lord in our lives, times when things didn't turn out the way I thought they should, times when He led us through valleys that I didn't think we were going to make it through. It's afterwards, (Not always right away. Sometimes it's taken quite a while!), that in hindsight I can see how He set us up to not only make it through, but to come through the valley stronger in Him. Looking back I see His handiwork in the details, the ways He provided just in time or the way He would send some encouragement when we were just about to give up. (Join me for the rest of this post on Sunday, November 17th at Woman to Woman Ministries, where each Sunday I share a bit of Sunday Soul Food!)

still following,





Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Weekly Gratitude Journal

We took an extra day off on Veteran's Day since this coming Friday on our day off we will be caring for three of the grandkids. For that reason, I'm posting my weekly gratitude journal a day late. 

 ****************
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks, 
piling up gratitude day by day in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)
#12,651-#12,675

11-4-19-
-Romans 8
-a walk around my hometown with my youngest grandson
-youngest granddaughter's toothy grin
-taking our two middle granddaughters to Starbucks after picking them up from school 
and a fun visit with them while we enjoyed our treats

11-5-19-
-sleeping in a wee bit
-a big cup of coffee made for me by my guy
-foggy mornings outside and a warm, cozy house inside
-making homemade bread and soup for tonight's small group, 
(I love to cook and bake!)

-our small group

11-6-19-
-lunch at my favorite restaurant by the river with my sister and brother-in-law
-the smell of woodsmoke from the neighbor's fireplace while out on my walk
-"God is kind, but He's not soft. In kindness He takes us firmly by the hand 
and leads us into a radical life change." Romans 2:3-4MSG

11-7-19-
-a sweet friend and her baby boy coming over for tea and a visit
-a good book that made me cry at the end
-a really good prayer and worship night at church

11-8-19-
-Friday date day
-God's provision through finding really good bargains on Christmas gifts
-dinner with my guy at one of our favorite iconic Portland restaurants

11-9-19-
-a wonderful prayer time 
-God's work in people's lives
-a walk on this drizzle-y beach-like day while having a good chat on the phone with G.

11-10-19-
-all of our dear ones from Truelife Espanol
-a great combined Sunday service and a great dinner together afterwards
-God at work in making us one
-returning visitors and more new faces

still following,