Thursday, 29 December 2011

Gingerbread Party



We did not make it to a gingerbread party this year. 
I would love to host one next year. Maybe if we can figure out the space =) 
Do you guys like to decorate gingerbread houses?
Much Love,
L

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Monday, 26 December 2011

{On my Heart} Mondays. [Part 3: The Real Meaning of Christmas]

The Birth of Jesus
 1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.
 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
   and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 1718 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,
 21 On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived. 
{The Bible, NIV} 

Christmas is such a wonderful time of year. Getting into the Christmas spirit is mentioned a lot but what does that really mean?
If you dig deeper into the story about Christmas, it wasn't an extravagent celebration at all.
It involved a girl & her fiance having no place to stay upon the arrival of her son. After having travelled a long way because of a census.
The focus is on the arrival of the Son of God, his humble entrance into the world.
Christmas is such a wonderful reminder of love.
The Love of our creator, that He would send His son to redeem the world.
For a fun version of the Nativity....check out this video.


Hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas.
Praise God for His love & gifts to us.
Much Love,
L


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Friday, 23 December 2011

Annual Ornament: Your Tree

Source: pinterest.com via Lisa on Pinterest

Andrew suggested this idea earlier this week. 
I discovered today that I had saved this picture in my Pinterest. 
Every year you take a section of the bottom when you go to throw the tree out and mark it for the year it was from. 
I think he was mostly excited because he wants an excuse to use his wood burning tool =) 
Love him! 
Much love, 
L

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Monday, 19 December 2011

{On my Heart} Mondays. [Part 2: Joy instead of complaining]

'Lament is a cry of belief in a good God, a God who has His ear to our hearts, a God who transfigures the ugly into beauty. Complaint is the bitter howl of unbelief in any benevolent God in this moment, a distrust in the love-beat of the Father's heart. God's anger kindles hot when the essence of the complaint implies doubt in His love....'
~ Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts




For those of you that have been in recent contact with me, you know that I am in love with this book, One Thousand Gifts. I can't highly recommend it enough. Ann Voskamp has done an amazing job of encouraging & challenging me through her thoughts. 

Of the many things I have been challenged by, the one on my heart currently is: replacing an attitude of complaint with joy and gratitude. I have been remembering that God has my best interests in mind for the things which come into my life. He is a loving God who cares about me more than I can comprehend. If I complain about things occuring in my life am I really doubting that the Lord cares about me. That He doesn't care about my best interests? 

I have been learning to see joy in the mundane of life. To see each small thing as a gift from the Lord. When you start to see life in this way, you realise how many gifts He bestows on us everyday. It truly is a different way of seeing life. A far more beautiful way. A way which acknowledges the Lord and meditates on Him, constant communion with Him throughout the day.
It also helps me have a much better attitude. There is nothing worse than hearing someone complain when they could be choosing to see joy.

The other thought which the quote from Ann Voskamps's book brought to mind was the story in Exodus about the Israelites and the manna. They complained about His provision for them, ever thought that their attitude of complaint led to them not being able to ever get to the Promised Land?
Each time I see things differently, it feels like I am seeing the Promised Land, a new level of God's love. A new understanding of who He is. 
A greater Love.
My first Love.

Much Love,
L

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Friday, 16 December 2011

This Winter's finished Quilt.

Remember the quilt I was working on.


Well, I finally finished it. 
And also finally got around to putting pictures of it up for you guys to see.
This one definitely taught me new quilting skills. 
I had never machine basted the quilt together like that....or done the binding around the edges.
I am super thrilled with the way it turned out though.
It's also nice & warm. 
Perfect now the snow is well and truly on the way.
Much Love,
L


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Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Cold Hands, Warm Heart Swap


It is here. 
The moment that 150 of us bloggers have been preparing for during the past few months.
The Cold Hands Warm Hearts exchange took place =)
Thanks to Sandyalamode & MuchLove, illy for hosting it!
Be sure to check out all the Link-ups over on Sandy's Blog today!

I'm hoping you guys have had a chance to check out sweet Laura's blog, Abstract Grace.


I had the priviledge of receiving a package all the way from her in CA. 
How thrilled I was to find that box on my doorstep when I came home.
The same day my friend surprised me by visiting!!!!
Too much excitment in my day! Awesome times. 

I was SUPER stoked about this exchange.
So without further delay, I will share some of the AWESOME goodies which Laura put together for me.
Definitely warmed my hands & heart.

So excited about getting the package!

This little purse now holds make-up in my bag. Such a wonderful way of making sure that my lipbalm is handy when I need it now the weather is SO cold.
 Ok, LOVE these. I have already sent one to a dear friend.

Sweetest little box which now holds my earrings from Anthropologie.

 Working the sleepwear.
Gorgeous notebook. LOVING the Paris-ness.

She also included a sweet passport holder. Perfect for my upcoming travels. 
As well as one of her Reusable Coffee Sleeves, you should totally check those out! 

And of course, can't forget about the gloves.
All about the gloves.
My hands....



....are warm.

I had SUCH a blast doing this exchange! 
Thank you SO much Laura. 
You are such a delight. 
Hope you guys enjoy all the swap fun.
Much Love,
L


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Monday, 12 December 2011

This Year's Ornament

 

So on Thanksgiving my friend Jenny let me come and invade their home.
She makes an ornament for her tree every year on Thanksgiving. 
I think this is an awesome tradition! 
So this year's ornament is actually an idea she came up with.
Since I didn't want to spend like $20 on a special ornament this year I thought it was perfect.
So remember the post about the ornament with the photo.
Well here's how it turned out.


The empty ornaments came from Michaels. They were about 60c on sale when I went on Black Friday. I then used dymo tape to write the year on it and attach ribbon to hang it with.
Such a simple cheap idea for an annual ornament.
Much Love,
L

{Please excuse that this is supposed to be an On my Heart Mondays post....My brain is still getting used to the new series. More next week.}




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Saturday, 10 December 2011

Surprise Visits.

You know those friends in life who are just friends for life.
The ones you only see once every few years.
But it's as though no time has passed.
The ones you can call or skype and talk to for hours about things on your heart.
I am SO blessed to have several of them in my life.
Girls who are so dear to me. Such wonderful friends.
One of them schemed with my loving husband & surprised me this week.
By coming to visit! 






Best surprise ever!
What an awesome way to spend 2 days.
This woman is amazing. I have been priviledged to know her for 6 yrs now.
I have watched her grow closer to the Lord & become an incredible woman.
I am SO thankful she is in my life.
Much Love,
L

Proverbs 27:17 Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.

P.S. Watch out for the upcoming post about the Cold Hands Warm Heart Swap ekkkk! 

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Friday, 9 December 2011

Advent for the Tree


Great idea for ornaments. 
I've been trying to think up homemade Advent calendar ideas.
This might be a keeper for next year.
Much Love,
L

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Thursday, 8 December 2011

Advent in Story Books


This is an awesome idea.
Wrap 24 books you already own for December & unwrap one each day to read at bedtime.
What a great idea! 
Much Love,
L

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Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Christmas Tree Fun Part 2.

 We decorated the tree once we had it up in the tree stand.
Using the lights from our wedding was an awesome idea =) 
No need to buy Christmas lights.
 We laughed hysterically at the ornament we bought on our honeymoon & forgot about.
A turtle making a snow angel in the sand....sand angel?
It was great discovering all the ornaments that hadn't been on a tree before.


 We even got a star for the top of the tree.
I have always wanted a star for the top of a Christmas tree.
We always had an angel growing up. Now we have a gold star which looks super pretty all lit up.
 The finished living room. Looks so festive with the lights, tree, stockings, gingerbread cushions & seasonal candle burning =)
 This is the ornament from last year.
A hallmark special. Literally.

 I found these awesome reindeer in TJMaxx this year.

That is the finished effect of our tree.
I love coming home after a long day and putting my feet up gazing at the tree lights.
Makes the cold weather so much more enjoyable.
Let it snow. Let it snow. Let is snow.
Much Love,
L

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Monday, 5 December 2011

{On my Heart} Mondays. [Part 1: Be All There]


‘Wherever you are, be all there.’ - Jim Elliott

I think Jim Elliott said this extremely well. There is nothing more frustrating than meeting with people only to have them spend most of the time on their phone, texting or seeming important in the world. Perhaps it is the lost art of etiquette which grieves me so much, as a people in our generation we are so comfortable with casual. Perhaps we are so casual that we seem almost rude in our behaviour towards others. We lack the art of making others feel honoured by the way we interact with them. Even to the point where we don’t seem to be able to focus on someone when in a conversation.

‘Very few of us understand how to behave socially in a way that truly brings glory to Jesus Christ and showcases the stunning beauty of our King.’ – Leslie Ludy, Set Apart Girl Magazine (Sept/Oct 2010 issue)

I realised how hard this is today at church when we had a potluck. I was so desperately trying to focus on the person talking to me, but with the noise level around me and constant distraction of others bumping into you in a small space it becomes increasingly difficult to truly give undivided attention to the other person. That bothers me because it is not the kind of interaction I feel would bring glory to Christ.

The other aspect of Jim Elliott’s quote which came to mind upon reading it is of contentment. I have two friends in particular in my life who are such a source of encouragement to me. They have mastered the art of being content with where God has them. They would have every reason according to the world’s standards to be unhappy and even complain about certain things in life. They fight the battle to not ‘be all there’ where God has them, to be discontent until God brings along that right guy in their life. Yet both of them are victorious in bringing honour to Christ in their attitudes, they trust & wait, knowing His love for them exceeds that of an earthly love.

An attitude of discontentment with where God has us is something that truly bothers me. Even in myself. He is teaching me so much about what it means to find joy in the situation He has put me in. Where He has called me to live currently. What people He has living close to me right now. To find joy in every circumstance, like Betsy Ten Boom even in a concentration camp. He has not called me in my life so far to find joy in a place as dire as a concentration camp, therefore I feel silly for not being content if Betsy can find contentment in that circumstance.

So wherever I am in life, whatever place I am in. I am learning to be all there. To not have an attitude of discontentment but to truly seek to honour Christ & trust Him with where He deems fit for me to be.

Even in something as small as a conversation with someone.

If you aren’t all there, you may miss a precious moment like that pictured.



---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

{On My Heart} Mondays is a new series.
I hope to share things I am learning or things close to my heart in these posts.
May they encourage you on the inside as we meet through our shared love of making things beautiful on the outside =)

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Saturday, 3 December 2011

Christmas Tree Fun Part 1.

 Since we didn't have Christmas in our own home last year, we never got to buy a tree.
So this year we went shopping for our first Christmas tree.
Super exciting.
We got the space in the living room all set up before we headed out.


 We looked around the lot for the perfect tree.
I never knew that there were different types, call me naive =)
 Then, we found it. Our very own Douglas Fir tree.
 Here it is in our living room.
And we set about setting up our tree & decorating the home.
Anyway I will have Part 2 showing the finished tree up soon.
I gotta head to work.
Much Love,
L
P.S. I spent the morning working on this year's quilt so hopefully photos of that soon also.

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