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Archive for November, 2009

I just wanted to pass this on! If you are in or around Oklahoma you might want to check this out 🙂 Hubby and I will be participating, and even with all the work, its a joy to see people experience this. Here is a link to the info (and pics!) and I will copy and paste some info below:

http://www.fhcc.org/fhcc/jtb.htm
“JOURNEY TO BETHLEHEM”

This holiday season, treat your family to a 3-D Christmas without the glasses! Over 6,000 area people experienced this event just last year! Begin a family tradition as you step into the true story of Christmas, traveling back in time, and experiencing the people, places and circumstances that surrounded the birth of Jesus Christ. Dress warm, because you’ll find it hard to believe you’re still in Oklahoma City when your mind is whisked away to another time and another place as you follow a guide couple on an OUTDOOR journey through a wooded area on the actual Church property. This Journey will give you the experience of traveling for the census to the town of Bethlehem. See over 300 people in costume as you encounter Old Testament Prophets, shepherds tending their sheep, the Wise Men from the East, marketplace vendors, and even other travelers. Don’t be afraid as you are approached by Roman soldiers on horseback, or when you discover the notorious King Herod. Register for the census in Judea and witness the sights and sounds of the town of Bethlehem, including the Marketplace, the Inn, the Stable, and the Christ Child lying in a manger. Your children will delight in the camels, donkeys, llamas, sheep, chickens, and many other LIVE ANIMALS! Encounter the Christ Child in a way that will impact your family’s Christmas season for years to come. This Christmas, don’t just read the story – come and be a part of it!

At the conclusion of your Journey, enjoy hot chocolate and home made cookies in our Winter Wonderland! Also, feel free to leave a prayer request on our special Prayer Tree. If you visited us in the past, you’ll be surprised at our new improvements. We have added new scenes and characters to enhance the experience. Also, we have added an entire new path, so that we can accommodate two groups simultaneously. This addition will help lines move much faster! We’ll be able to have many more people in the wooded area at a time. As usual, our parking directors will greet you immediately to help you find a convenient location. The Sanctuary will host spectacular entertainment as you wait for your group to depart on the “Journey”. Each year is a new experience waiting for you in “Bethlehem”!

There is NO CHARGE for this “Journey to Bethlehem”. The interactive tours and refreshments are FREE to all! No tickets or reservations are required. This is our gift to Oklahoma City and the area. Tours will depart every two minutes from 6:00 pm – 9:00 p.m. each evening, on December 3rd-6th at Forest Hill Christian Church, 2121 N. MacArthur Blvd., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. For more information, please call (405) 495-0439 or visit http://www.fhcc.org.

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I’m still here…

Just a little busy with stuff as of late, and sick kids! Right now its a stomach bug, overall its not too bad, but its lingering! The next week or so is incredibly busy with Journey to Bethlehem at church, so I won’t be able to blog much.

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I just wanted to share this with you all 🙂

Shane Claiborne – Letter to Non-Believers by Shane Claibourne – Esquire.

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Its finally getting cold, and tonight we are supposed to have our first freeze in this part of Oklahoma! Its a little later than normal, but that’s ok 🙂 I am so looking forward to no flies, mosquitoes and other creepy crawlies.

Homeschooling is going well, the SOS curriculum is still working, and the kids are handling it pretty well. They are a bit challenged on some of it, and that’s good. They got to watch the shuttle launch yesterday, which they enjoyed, and it just happened to coincide with their lesson on manned space missions that was in SOS.

All our health is holding up pretty good, no flu! It seems though that a cold is going around, both DH and Lilly have the sniffles and feel just plain yucky.

That is all that is going on around here.

Now for part of what I wanted to blog about 🙂

I answered a comment the other day on one of my blog posts, and it got me to thinkin’ about some stuff. In all the online modesty, headcovering groups I am in (or have been in) there are a bunch of ladies who talk about wanting to be part of a like minded denomination (one that embraces headcovering and modesty to the standards they observe) and/or move out in the middle of nowhere away from all the “sinful” stuff in the city (I have already blogged on that one, see I want to be a Shaker please!) I briefly went through a similar phase when I started out on this journey, but this is yet another area where God has said, “Do this where you are.”

I guess what I am trying to say is this : Do not feel like you HAVE to be a part of a headcovering denomination, do not feel like you HAVE  to be part of “Plain” dressing community to dress modestly. Yes, it *was* hard at first being the only headcovering person in my church, or to be one of the few that has stricter standards for myself and my daughters in regard to modesty. I think its possible to do this because God led us to a church that was right for us, and they have been accepting of me and my whole family! I think this is viable option for most, and I believe it could also serve as a lesson on contentment. To be honest, I seriously doubt I will *ever* find a church that we would agree with *everything* they believe in, I am pretty sure that’s the way it is for most folks.

With that being said, I want to share a passage I read this week in the book, Becoming the Answer to Our Prayers by Shane Claiborne and Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove (from pg 48) In this section they were talking about how liberal and conservative Christians tend to think they are better than the other in what they do and how they believe. The scripture they are referring is Luke 18.

” Rather than separating ourselves from everyone we consider impure, Jesus seems to say that we are better off beating our chests and praying that God would be merciful enough to save us from this present ugliness and make our lives so beautiful that people cannot resist the mercy.”

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I remember as a child, my parents getting one of those charming glass jars with fabric on the lid. I can’t remember what was in it, but it was one of those things deemed “too cute” to use, at least at first. 😉 A couple of years ago, I found myself wanting to do these as gifts, since we can’t afford much to give to others outside our immediate family.  I found a couple of recipe books  for these at an estate sale, and I purchased several for my children’s fundraising while they were in public school.  This year I find myself wanting to do this again (last year we were in the process of moving!), and I wanted to share some tips, suggestions, and links to recipes, that might help some. And don’t limit yourself, there are recipes for drinks, bath salts, and other things to try!

* Do not be afraid to use those disposable plastic storage containers or storage bags (like the Glad or Ziploc containers). I have even noticed them in Christmas-y colors and decorations! Its cheaper than jars, and they ship much better (and cheaper!) It may not look as pretty, but its more practical. Personally, I would rather have the plastic containers since I use them anyway! Nowadays, jars usually get put up way in the back of the cabinet, not to be seen until its time for a garage sale!

* Use simple recipes. In a couple of the cookbooks I have, there are lengthy lists of ingredients just to make the jars! The last thing you want is to have to buy all these ingredients, and then you are left with the extras you may never use! I pick recipes that are classics (like chocolate chip cookies or chicken soup) or stuff I *know* the recipient would try.

* Make extras for yourself! What a great way to have homemade convenience foods on hand! It would be a great way to have the kids help in baking or making soups. I have been wanting to do this, so we can eat more homemade foods. They could also make excellent last minute gifts anytime of year

* Do a “jar exchange” or “jar party”. Get together with your friends, and everyone bring  their stuff to make a bunch of jars of their choice. After you are done, you can swap 🙂 Great way to have a variety of gifts with out having to purchase a whole long list of stuff. If each person brings the stuff for 1 or 2 different jars, then this could cut down on the surplus ingredients you might be “stuck” with after 😉

* Don’t go out and buy those gifts-in-a-jar cookbooks. Yeah, I said it 😉 I made that mistake after feeling the pressure from fundraising! LOL Now if you find them at a thrift shop or garage sale and they are super cheap, then go for it. Let me say this: the following links have many of the same or similar recipes that I have in the books I have, and the info is *FREE* You can make your own tags on the computer or by hand, or have your child (with semi-neat handwriting) help you out 😉 Use a search engine, like Google to search for more, if these aren’t enough!

Links:

http://www.recipegoldmine.com/foodgift/foodgift.html

http://www.allfreecrafts.com/giftinajar/index.shtml

http://www.giftinajarrecipes.com/

http://christmas.organizedhome.com/gifts-crafts-gift-tags/gifts-in-a-jar

http://www.recipelink.com/holiday/merrygifts.html

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November 2, 2009

This is what I love about this time of year…weeks that are supposed to be in the 60s and 70s! I can open windows, and do some yard work…well I am not too excited about the yard work, as there is A LOT of it, but its pretty easy stuff like raking leaves and clearing out stuff.

It seemed like a busy weekend, as every other day (well, at least as long as hubby is in school!) Speaking of which, I think I going to be counting down the days until he is done this semester! And then only 2 more classes (YAY!) We stayed home Saturday night, and the kids were a little disappointed I didn’t have something special planned…but they have gotten over it quickly. Sunday, there was church and Bible study…and it was a real blessed time 🙂

Sunday afternoon, we went to my Grandma’s house to visit. I am sad because I don’t see her often enough, but there is not much I can do about it, since we only have 1 vehicle. With the time change, I am able to get up a little bit earlier, so maybe I can take Hubby to work, so me and the kiddos can go see her 🙂 I can’t say how much I have grown to love my Grandma, as a person! That may be a weird thing to say, but when you are a kid things are a bit different with grandparents. I talk with her, and I hear the stories about her and Grandpa (now deceased) and my family 🙂 This may be another weird thing, but for most of my life, I have felt so different from most of my family. Its not necessarily “black sheep” different, but just a little bit odd, I guess. 😉 In the past few years, while spending time with her and hearing her talk, I see that I am so much like her…and 10 or 15 yrs ago, I would have been ashamed to say that…but now…I see it so clearly, and I am ever so thankful! As I write this, I am crying, because I know that she is getting older, and I don’t have much time left, to get to know the 1 person I know, that I am like. I see in her eyes, how lonely she is, and it crushes me, because I have seen what that does to people (while working with the elderly a few years back) and I know that is something I struggle with myself.  I am just praying that God helps me make more time to spend with her, and helps me figure out ways…I am sick of bein’ so busy! Lord, help me prioritize my life, putting loved ones ahead of trivial stuff!

It’s getting to be that time of year again…Journey to Bethlehem time at church. I will have to post more on that later, as I will try to do a separate post today, we will see how time allows. 🙂

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