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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Favorite Christmas Traditions

My favorite tradition has nothing to do with puppies, but they were so cute, I couldn't resist!!!
I have two favorite traditions from my side of the family.  The first was when I was a child we lived in the Netherlands {Holland}.  They celebrate the first 5 days in December by putting their shoes out on the doorstep.  If they have been good, Father Christmas, {Santa} fills them with gifts, If they have been bad, His elf, short Pete, throws them in a black bag and carries them off to spain, where Father Christmas lives.  No gifts are left in those shoes.  I am not sure we celebrate it exactly the way it is supposed to be done, but after we lived in Holland, for many years we would put out painted wooden shoes from Holland and they would be filler every night from Dec 1st to the 5th. 
Father Christmas, doesn't always make it to my house now, but some years he has brought
presents to my husband.  I must not be a good girl, because he never brings me anything!! :]   [Short Pete needs to whisper in my husbands ear!!]
My 2nd favorite tradition stems from my childhood as well.  As children we would shop for each other a few days before Christmas at the local bargain shop.  We would spend the whole time hiding from each other and then hiding our gifts at home until we could get them wrapped.  Berrett and I have continued the tradition by going to a store together but splitting up and buying for each other.  It's fun to hide from each other and then sneak in the gifts to wrap.  Walmart is usually the store we choose, and its big enough and busy enough that we seldom see each other.  I cannot wait to carry on both of these traditions with our own kids.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Just a thought...

 I was watching the link on LDS.org today about the Video's of the Life Of Christ.  I was really interested in the videos about the angel telling Mary of the impending birth of Christ and her visit to Elizabeth.  http://lds.org/bible-videos?lang=eng
I was watching this and was suddenly struck by the fact that the Lord asks us to endure hard things to receive the most wonderful blessings.  Mary was unmarried, virtuous and yet she still carried the Christ Child. It is amazing to me that she accepted this so willingly.  She must have been treated so badly by those who did not understand.  She could have been rejected by her family, her friends and her Beloved Joseph.  And yet, she said.... " And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her." Luke 1:38
I have been occasionally feeling sorry for myself.  I have watched others get pregnant with no difficulties, or held babies I love, only to send them home with their mom's at the end of the day.  Adoption is not easy!! You go through so many emotions, You have to be interviewed, you have to lay open your personal life to a stranger, You have to find the money to pay for it.. You have to be patient and wait for someone to choose your family.   It can feel like too much sometimes.  I have put some of all of that on the back burner while dealing with my mom's health issues and in some ways it was a relief to do so.  My younger sis is pregnant, and I am happy for her, but also a little sad for me.  I found out recently that some friends adopted and I am happy for them but now curious about their experiences.  I guess I am ready to do more to make this miracle happen.  I am ready to face hard things to receive the miracle.  The Lord requires the best from His servants and sometimes the Very Best can be the Hardest, but I am willing to show myself ready.  I guess I am echoing Mary, by asking the lord to make me His Handmaiden, to let it be unto me.. according to His word.  Whatever that may be.