Monday, November 29, 2021

Advent: A Time of Repentance and Mourning

 That title up there -- Adam told me that yesterday as we drove home from church, and it's stuck with me. For many American Protestant Evangelicals, who have little historical understanding of Advent (or Lent, for that matter), it feels more like they are engaged in a month-long baby shower with lots of presents and enthusiasm. 

NOT to be critical, however. Joy is also appropriate, as the angels told us. 

The advent calendar is hung, waiting Dec. 1. I think I've somehow lost the inn keeper, if I ever had one.

The Christmas cactus is beginning to bloom.
I'm sick. Not very sick, but either 1) an allergic reaction to lots of mouse dust in the barn, or 2) a cold caught from my grandbaby, John.
If it's John's cold, it is worth every single snuggle and hug!

They were here for a week, and now they are gone back to their busy lives, and we miss them. He is a very sweet baby.

So, being sick, I'm drinking tea and taking it a little easier for a few days.

I'm knitting a scarf with two yarns together, an easy pattern.
Time on the couch with the humidifier blowing pillows of moisture into the air, and my lovely (fake) fireplace glowing away. I love it.
The blanket is for Tricky, who loves to sleep on it. I'll wash it tomorrow, but until then, it's hers.

For years, I've wanted an elegant snow globe, but they are so very expensive. Last month, while strolling through the Christmas section at WalMart, I found this:

It sparkles and churns silver glitter all around, and even though it might be on the edge of ... well, not tacky, but not elegant ... I am enjoying it a lot. 

What do we mourn during Advent? Not the birth of the baby, but perhaps the fact that He had to come at all. We mourn our brokenness and wickedness that made our rescue necessary, and His coming and rescuing of us essential in order for us to regain peace, a better way to live. I look at the world around me, and the church in our world, and it's hard to see that we have found peace, or any better way to live. But I continue to hope.

I hope to post once a week this month. We shall see!

Friday, November 5, 2021

November Before I Knew It

 October flew away, and now we are into the fast downhill race to Christmas. Can we slow it down? I'm spending my days mostly at home, doing my artistic work and household chores. Taking the dogs outside and resting when I need to. This does seem to slow things ... a little bit.

Julia now has a kitten called Leo. She found him in our yard. He was about 3 - 4 weeks old, and desperately looking for someone to take care of him. She is delighted!
Last week I enjoyed lunch with a group of dear friends from church. What a gathering of beautiful souls is our church! I may be the pastor's wife, but these women are all GOOD FRIENDS, and I'm so thankful for them.
I don't think I posted about my trip to West Virginia a few weeks ago. In addition to seeing my mother and other precious family members, I also got to see my grandbaby, John. He's grown so much and is so much fun! 
After canceling our church's community Thanksgiving Day dinner last year because of Covid-19, we are eating together again this year! Adam and I are so excited to enjoy this day again, even if our crowd may be a little smaller.
I participated in an Art Walk in Oriental last week! I felt like a real artist for the evening, haha. It was so much fun, and I sold quite a few cards. Adam and Julia came along for moral support and to help me haul my stuff. I set up by the waterfront and the Tiki Bar. Delightful!

It's downright chilly here now. The low last night was around 40. Brrr! I'm finally settling in to my new routine since Adam took a second job as a middle school science teacher (which he absolutely LOVES). My days are my own, and the house is mostly quiet. I'm making a loose schedule to keep myself accountable to get at least 2 things done each day. It helps. Yesterday was "painting in the morning and resting in the afternoon." (I only do "resting" once each week!) Today is "soap-making in the morning and yard mulch in the afternoon." We'll see if I get that done.

Here are some of my recent youtube videos, if you want to come along with my daily doings:

Making my first beeswax candle:

Making pumpkin bread:
My West Virginia trip (part two):

One more? Just toodling around outside in the autumn and inside my studio:

And here are a few cards I've painted recently:

Enjoy the season! Cherish and savor every day! Soon it will be January with plenty of time to rest and ponder. Now is the season for joy.