Thursday, December 31, 2009

Reflection for the New Year!

On this eve of 2010, I wish you all Love, Peace, Health & Happiness. I received the following in an email and have decided to share it here.
The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday Morning Commentary.

My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are, Christmas trees.

It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu . If people want a creche, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where theAmerica we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could God let something like this happen?' (regarding Hurricane Katrina). Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'

In light of recent events... terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school The Bible says thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said okay.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

If not, then just discard it... no one will know you did. But, if you discard this thought process, don't sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.



My Best Regards, Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein

Be safe and happy my blog friends.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Christmas!


This will be my last post until after Christmas. Tomorrow we are going out to buy all the fish we traditionally consume on Christmas Eve and more goodies for Christmas Day. We have a very "homemade" Christmas at our house. Most of our ornaments and house decorations have been handmade by me and/or our daughter. Many of them, including the tree skirt, are 17 years old!

These two reindeer pals always sit on this speaker for the holidays!

This soldier is made of cardboard paper towel rolls, oatmeal boxes & styrofoam, and he has patrolled our living room for many, many years with his trusty reindeer friend!

The stockings are hung by the fireplace--the one of the left is our daughter's. It is needlepointed and I began it when I found out I was pregnant. I actually was working on it when I went into labor! The other two are not quite as old--Mom and Dad needed stockings, too! The little pillow I filled with pine needles & some pine scent, but alas over the years it has lost its smell.

Last, but not least, this cute Hallmark reindeer family that I started collecting about 30 years ago!
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and wish you all the best in 2010!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Another Party, Another Cancellation!

Yes, that's right...Our second holiday party invitation for last night wound up canceled, too. The weather again came into play when a nor'easter was predicted to dump 6-12" beginning after sunset & last till the next morning. In actuality, the snow did not start until 8 pm and we only got 4-5" total--not that I am complaining, however!

Obviously, I have not had time to start the ceiling project (see this post)because I have been baking goodies to take to the above party that never happened! Now our daughter will take some to school to give to the teachers who wrote her college recommendation letters. I have also been running back & forth to the supermarket almost everyday to purchase carefully timed ingredients for Christmas Eve & Day dinners. I hate that the ceiling won't be done & we are having a housefull for Christmas Day--but I'm getting over that.

Our daughter has now been accepted to 7 of the 9 colleges that she applied to! Yipee! We are all so happy that she has been accepted to her first & second choices. We are awaiting the decisions of the last two and then we will plan to visit all the possibles again so a decision can be made--but a lot of the pressure is off!

So things are coming together quite nicely! I'm trying to stay organized, as in what needs to be done when, and I am finding that Christmas is a finely timed holiday! In the next day or so I will be doing a few posts to show you some of our Christmas decorations, but for now I leave you with this....

The Nativity has been in my husband's family for many, many years. My Mom, who passed away in 2003, made the stable. Two very special heirlooms come together to identify the most important part of Christmas. It's all about Jesus, family and tradition!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Horror on the Highway

So today we were supposed to go to a relative's home about an hour away for an annual Christmas Party. We look forward to this every year since we don't get to see many of these relatives any other time during the year. (My husband's side of the family)

I got up at 7 a.m., ate breakfast, and exercised on the elliptical for 30 minutes in anticipation for the wonderful feast I knew we would be treated to.

Next I started the cream puffs that I happily make every year as our contribution. Having made the cream last night, I was right on schedule. I made two recipes of about 2 1/2 dozen each and each tray bakes for a total of 35 minutes. In between, I ironed our clothes, cleaned the windshield of the car, polished my nails & changed the bed. We got in the car about 1:15 pm--slightly behind schedule, but still okay.

The weather was rainy and the temperature was hovering just at the freezing mark. We had less than one mile before we come to the entrance ramp of the highway, and the road was backed up before we even got on. An ambulance passed us a short time later--although at that time we did not know whether it went on the ramp or straight ahead. But that should have been our first clue. We decided to get onto the highway and see how it goes. I think we went less than one mile when we heard the traffic report about all the accidents, so we just decided to get off the next exit & go home. As we called the party host to give regrets, the traffic came to a complete stop. We were stuck there at a standstill for 2 hours.

My husband and daughter started eating the cream puffs--none of us had had lunch. I was too nervous. We shook our head at the man two cars back who got out of his car to relieve himself, and we gave directions to the car next to us who said they had no heat and were running out of gas. Oh, three more ambulances passed us on the shoulder of the road, so this must have been some accident.

I am thankful that we finally were able to get off the highway. The side roads by then were salted/sanded and we made it home safely. I took out the old pasta machine & made home made pasta--tomorrow is my husband's birthday & this is his favorite! While we feasted at home, we thought how fast plans can change, how being in the wrong place at the wrong time can lead to disaster, and said a prayer for whomever those four ambulances went to assist.

Be safe this Christmas Season my bloggy friends!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Snow Day!

The weather people finally got it right this time! Woke up to 4-5" of snow to be followed by heavy rains....School closed....husband has sinus infection....he's mad because I went out and pushed the snow off the driveway-he'll get over it....it's going to be an interesting day!

Hope your day goes well!

Sorry no photo today--I took one but the camera captured a nice shot of the screen window rather than the snow outside!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Neat Site!


Today I want to share with you a neat site I found. It's called, "Find How". You can find out how to do just about anything by searching on this site. I came across it when I was searching for how to fix a hole in drywall. Yup, that's it above. We really don't know how/why this hole came to be...it is right outside the upstairs bath & the paint in this little circular area has been bubbling for many years. We always left it alone, but this past summer it started falling down in big clumps! Our temporary solution as you can see was to use handy-dandy duck tape...or is that duct tape?

Now since we are having nine or so guests for Christmas, I figured it was high time I fixed this! I hope to have some "as I go photos" to show you!

If you have any home improvement project that you've been putting off, check out this site--it's really helpful! And, it's not only for home improvement--you can find out how to do almost anything!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Afternoon Tea Break


There is nothing like a good cup of tea in the afternoon (or morning for that matter!) with a couple of ginger snaps. Today, I am enjoying Stash Fusion Tea, this one a mix of white & green tea. This is a favorite cup of mine because I love purple and it had belonged to my father-in-law who passed away in 1998. I had long admired this cup & by the time it came to me, he was gone & I could not bear to use it. Time does heal all and I am able to enjoy using it and remember him with happy memories.

Speaking of purple...here are my latest french beaded roses in purple. Maybe, I'm going through a purple period like Picasso's blue period! Not that I put myself on a par with Picasso! But, I'm also doing an oil painting of purple bearded irises--similar to the art card a few posts back. Do you find yourself creating in the same color for awhile? Anyway, the roses are up in my shop if you want to have a better look.

Happy Tuesday!