Sunday, December 13, 2009

At Our Home...We Are All About the Christmas Spirit!



Ever since I was a little girl I have loved and adored Christmas. I love celebrating the birthday and gift of Jesus! I love the colored lights outdoors and driving around at night, sipping hot chocolate, and going "Ooooh" and "Ahhhh" over amazing landscapes of outdoor Christmas scenes. I love recounting old Christmas stories from when I was little and making new Christmas memories with those I love. I love all of the shopping and decorating...I LOVE it all and look forward to it all year long.

Here are a few of the the sights, smells, and activities that are blessing us this Christmas:

1) Going to the The Lion King Musical With Emma!



What a great way to start the holiday season! Some years back Bert and I took Jessi and Amy and their families to the Lion King musical in Spokane. We absolutely LOVED the fabulous story, all of the music, the realistic sets and the most amazing costumes ever! The huge (and I do mean huge) animals parade through the theatre and are almost in your lap. Emma was so little at the time we went that she didn't go with us as we thought she might be frightened. So when the Lion King came back to town, Bert and I invited Emma for a solo lunch and musical event. It is so great to have one-on-one time with our grandchildren (and it's not easy to do since we have 12 of them). We loved every minute with Emma and will always remember her amazed face during the opening number!
Thanks Emma for sharing this fun Christmas "date" with Boppa and with me!


2) Decorating Our Home For The Holidays!






At Christmas time I love taking special care with creating little scenes or vinyettes in our home. I change what we do every year, and it's a chance for me to do some of the decorating and design that pleases my heart! This year, instead of the usual red and green theme, we went with more neutrals and "subtle scapes" with creams, tans, golds, silvers and bronzes. We even used sea shells we have collected in Hawaii! While our home doesn't "scream" Christmas (as it often does :)) it has been soothing to my heart to try this new gentle reminder of the holidays!

Here are a few of Christmas scenes at our home:







3) Special Books For The Christmas Season!


For us, Christmas is all about opening our hearts and appreciating God's gift in Jesus!

I am always an avid reader and once my grades are in at the college you may find me next to the fireplace, coffee mug in hand, reading some old and new "favoritos"! Here are several that came to me from special friends in my life":




*have a little faith- by Mitch Albom, the amazing author of Tuesdays With Morrie!
This inspiring true story details the author's eight year journey between two world's of faith- Christian and Jewish, rich and poor, white and African- American and two men... the author's rabbi and an inner city poor African-American pastor. A perfect Christmas read.
My book review: WOW! *****


*Advent and Christmas-Wisdom From Henri J.M. Nouwen , one of my all-time favorite writers of faith.
This powerful little book has daily lessons and devotionals for Advent and the Christmas season that really open your heart to the real meaning of Christmas. A very humbling and introspective read about what it really means to follow Jesus when you are a flawed human being like I am.
My book review: Double WOW! *****
Thank you Ashley Ulmer, consulting client and friend, for knowing exactly what I needed this Christmas season!

4) Amazing Christmas Music- New Favorites!

Andrea Bocelli is one of my all-time favorite singers. His heavenly voice in a new CD- "Andrea Bocelli-My Christmas" is beyond wonderful. Many years ago Jessi, Rog, Erik, Theresa and I saw


Andrea Bocelli in concert. It was a life-time memory for me. And here he is again singing Christmas tunes with Natalie Cole, Mary J Blige and others. What an amazing musical Christmas treat!


5) Special, Spontaneous Time With My Hubby!

Both Bert and I have busy and conflicting schedules. He works late three nights a week, has choir practice for our church, and I am busy with school and consulting activities. It is SO wonderful during the Christmas season to slow down the pace and have some fun couple's time together.
Most recently we went to Anna Seppa's fabulous Christmas concert with the Spokane Children's Choral group. What beautiful Christmas music, and Anna did an amazing job! She looked gorgeous in her long green skirt and black velvet top. Before the concert we went to our favorite Thai restaurant and had soup and capped off the evening following the concert with dessert at Lindamans. We both even got dressed up!
Thanks for inviting us to your concert Anna! We loved it and we are so delighted that you liked your flower bouquet!


6) More Christmas Memories to Follow!

I can hardly wait to see the Nutcracker Ballet with Jessi and Emma, have time at our church to celebrate Jesus, and precious time with family and friends. I may even get my annual Christmas card drawn, who knows! Besides all of the fun activities, I hope to still my life an my heart to make room for the real reason for the season...the birth of Jesus!
May you have a blessed Christmas too!
God Bless!
Love Linda

"Just Plain Hard"...

                  Stand up straight and                   realize who you are,                   that you tower over your               ...