I haven't written just a totally random post in awhile, so I thought I would write one now! I know, you can barely contain your excitement!
--First, can't wait until Sat!!! I get to unveil a cool new fundraiser for some friends raising money for their adoption. Their little guy's birthday is Sat (I think he'll be 2), so they are starting their fundraiser that day. You're gonna love it and you won't want to miss it, so make sure you come back on Nov. 24!!!!
--Some friends and I were chatting a few weeks ago about Christmas and traditions we've had a while and some we would like to start. I shared that I would love for Christmas to become a time where we don't really get gifts for each other, they are all just for others, family members and those in need alike. One friend pointed out that getting each other gifts (mainly getting our children gifts) isn't a bad thing and the I shouldn't feel that we have to cut that out entirely. (This, of course, is the same thing my husband has been telling me for about a year now!) As I got to thinking, I knew she was right...and I realized that not giving presents wasn't really what I was wanting. My dream for Christmas would be that it's a time when we focus on others, instead of ourselves. When my kids think Christmas, I no longer want their first thought to be, "OOh, we're going to get presents! I'd really like..." I want their thought to be "Ooh, do we have the gift catalogue, yet, so we can pick out some gifts for those kids?" I don't really want to NOT buy presents for my kids, I just want, for our whole family, to look at Christmas differently...as a really special time to be able to share our blessings with others....a time to really think of others first! I know this doesn't come naturally (thanks, human nature) and they won't ever become that way if they don't see it modeled (again, being a parent is ROUGH!) Lord, help Kevin and I to have selfless hearts that desire to do whatever it takes to share You with others. Lord, let this be something our children see and desire to emulate!
--For Christmas this year, we've decided to make or buy all of our gifts from organizations that use the profits to help the poor, the orphan, and the widow. I really thought this would be something that I would end up hating and being legalistic about, but I have really enjoyed it, so far. We haven't really made the gifts, yet, but sitting down and looking at different options and trying to narrow down what we wanted to get/make has been really fun. Hopefully our family members enjoy their gifts!
--On that note, the theme for the gifts for one side of the family is "The Wild West"...so, anyone has suggestions for things we can make to go with that theme for kids ages 3-6 and for adults would be more than welcome! (Hazelwood family members, just ignore any helpful ideas you see here so you can pretend you don't know what our gifts might be!)
--Our eucharisteo wall is outgrowing the wall space! Oh, how this warms my heart! I know his motives are probably not pure, but I love it when Ethan comes running out of his room just a little past bedtime and, with a HUGE grin on his face, says, "Mommy! I have a eucharisteo!" I know deep down he's really just wanting to delay bedtime, but every time he actually has something to say, so I know he's spent some time thinking about it! Lord, please help this month of focusing on your grace and gifts to soften our hearts and lead us to live a truly thankful life. Let the eucharisteo come spilling out as a result of the overwhelming gratitude in our hearts.
--I also love that Sophie's new obsession each morning is to wake up, run to the door, throw it open, and check for snow. She wants it to snow so badly! She has learned how to check the weather on the tab, so when she realizes there's no snow on the ground, she check the weather report to see when it might be coming! Oh, if only I lived as excited about Christ's return and life in Heaven as she does in anticipation of snow. Lord, teach me! Thank you for using my kids to teach me what I need to be doing! What a blessing straight from Your hand are these two amazing kids!
--I rode a bike today. That may seem small to you, but it's huge to this girl!
--I love Christmas music and am so glad I can unashamedly play it now! (Though, I must admit, I never took the Christmas CD's out of my car from last Christmas!)
--I have started the very beginnings of study for the James devotionals I am attempting to write. I was really not looking forward to this at all. I do not enjoy studying or research. Quite frankly, I would much rather someone else do all the work and I just reap the benefits. Lazy, I know! But, God is already at work because I have really enjoyed the study I have done so far. I really enjoyed the Beth Moore study on James that I did and look forward to learning even more. Lord, thank you for answering prayers and placing a desire in my heart to know and learn more about You from Your Word!