Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Day 6- St. Nicholas Day

I told the story of St. Nicholas the night before so the kids would leave out their shoes. If you don't know about St. Nicholas and the traditions surrounding him here is a brief synopsis.

The true story of Santa Claus begins with Nicholas, who was born during the third century in the village of Patara. At the time the area was Greek and is now on the southern coast of Turkey. His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus' words to "sell what you own and give the money to the poor," Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God and was made Bishop of Myra while still a young man. Bishop Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to the those in need, his love for children, and his concern for sailors and ships.
NIcholas Day
One story tells of a poor man with three daughters. In those days a young woman's father had to offer prospective husbands something of value—a dowry. The larger the dowry, the better the chance that a young woman would find a good husband. Without a dowry, a woman was unlikely to marry. This poor man's daughters, without dowries, were therefore destined to be sold into slavery. Mysteriously, on three different occasions, a bag of gold appeared in their home-providing the needed dowries. The bags of gold, tossed through an open window, are said to have landed in stockings or shoes left before the fire to dry. This led to the custom of children hanging stockings or putting out shoes, eagerly awaiting gifts from Saint Nicholas. Sometimes the story is told with gold balls instead of bags of gold. That is why three gold balls, sometimes represented as oranges, are one of the symbols for St. Nicholas. And so St. Nicholas is a gift-giver.

In several countries around the world children leave their shoes out and their shoes are filled with treats in the morning so we filled the kids shoes with a little toy, an orange, and chocolate coins. Autry received a little flashlight, Claire a little unicorn, and Addie a little bunny.

Around 10 we headed over to a new friend from Southwest's house and we made Christmas cookies. Since we first came to Southwest Bible Church Autry has become friends with a boy named Micah. Their friendship has been such a blessing to me. Leaving our last church was so difficult for us , leaving our friends and community has been the hardest of all, but from the beginning seeing Autry form this friendship with this little boy made me feel hopeful. I do feel hopeful now of starting over in a new community and thankful for the new friendships we have and the new friendships that will continue to form.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Advent day 4

I realize this is out of order but we just hung up the star ornaments and I didn't want to post until we had a picture of them. Sunday we read verses that refer to Jesus as the Morning star and then we made star ornaments to remind us of Jesus. One of the ornaments even comes complete with a Jedi, I wonder who made that one :).

Advent day 5- plum pudding

Today was Randy's first day of postman class. After a month of having him home I was a little nervous that I wouldn't get anything done today but it was actually a super productive day. We even were able to have a little fun.
I forgot about doing the verse today put the activity was make plum pudding and that's what we did. We listened to Christmas music, learns about Christmas in England, and Plum pudding. I even put a coin in it wrapped in foil for someone to find and receive something special. Claire's piece had it in it and she was thrilled. The pictures arn't in order but you can still see the fun we were having. Mixing, stirring, and a cute little Gibson yammering away. We had a lot of fun and the plum pudding was good too.

Pallets pallets and more pallets

I have an obsession with Pinterest. Everything I cook, bake, and create is from Pinterest. Recently Randy has caught the fever and has been creating things and getting ideas from Pinterst. He is super creative so he doesn't need much help but he has made some super cool things as of late. I love things made from reclaimed wood (pallets) and since Randy found 6 pallets recently he has been making things from these pallets. Here is a picture of a bar he made in our garage and a shelf he made for the inside.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Advent Day 3

John 3:19
And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.

It is so humbling to realize that Jesus coming to earth is a blessing for some and a curse for others. If we know Jesus we have been called to recognize His light but those who have not known Jesus have chosen darkness instead.
During the Christmas season we see our neighborhood come alive with lights and decorations. As we look around and enjoy the lights I want to take time to thank " THE light of the world" for choosing me so that I do not have to live in darkness.

We colored candles today to signify light, and are making them into Christmas ornaments. Autry has been busy masking new ornaments all day we now have a ty fighter, Yoda, General Grievous, and Mace Windu.

On a completely different note, other fun activities included killing our chicken who wasn't producing eggs. Fortunately I was at work when this all happened. I had already told Randy that I wanted no part of the butchering, not that I have a problem with it I just can't handle those kind of things. I love the idea of living off the land but when it comes down to it I am kind of a wuss. I always tell Randy that there is a reason that I was not born in a previous century, I just couldn't handle it. I can barely get myself to eat our chicken's eggs. The first time I collected the egg and it was warm I wanted to throw up. I Sound like such a sissy admitting all of this but I guess it's good to be honest :). Anyways, the chicken was killed tonight and here is a video. You can't really see anything in the video, I pit it on here because hearing the kid's reaction is the funny part.

I will download the video tomorrow because my blogger phone app isn't letting me put on a video.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Advent Day 2

24 days until Christmas! Claire and Addie ask constantly if it's still going to be Christmas tomorrow? We are all loving this Christmas season.
Today was super busy with errands, and on top of that Randy and I have been having boughts with the stomach flu so needless to say we didn't get to our advent calendar but the activity was decorate the tree and we got that done. It may have happened right before bed buy we fit it in and that's the important part.
When you are looking through the pictures you will have notice our new collection of Star Wars ornaments made by Autry. They come complete with Luke, Leia, Chewbacca, Han Solo, and the Millennium Falcon.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Advent Day 1

We had a fun filled day of getting out Christmas decorations, house decorating, and getting our Christmas tree.

Today we talked about Isaiah 11:1-2

Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, And a branch from his roots will bear fruit.
The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him,
The spirit of wisdom and understanding,The spirit of counsel and strength,The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. (NASB)

The kids and I talked about how Isaiah uses a tree to symbolize the coming of Christ. I told the kids that everytime we look at the tree we can remember that Jesus came to earth to save us from our sins.

Some of my favorite moments of the day where Addie over and over again asking on the way to the Christmas tree farm, "are we at Christmas yet?"

Second, today I told the kids that because we have a little terrorist at our house(Gibson), we are going to limit the amount of ornaments that we put up (I would like to say this is a good training opportunity but I have had so many ornaments broken since we've had kids, I really want to protect the ones we have) and we are going to make a lot of ornaments to put up this year. Autry got really sad and began describing all the ornaments that we HAD to have up. I conceded and said that everyone could choose three, including myself. I ended up choosing five. I love how sentimental Autry is about traditions! This reminds me of being a child and not letting my mom forget a single tradition ever.

Also if you look close at Gibson you will notice he has purple girl pants on, there was a small leakage problem and I wasn't about to let that stop me from getting our Christmas tree!

Here are some pictures of the day.