I am content. I don’t think I’ve learned the great lesson in how to be content in every situation – no, not by a mile. But I am right now. And I really really think I’ll have contentment if & when a great tragedy hits my life. I think I’ll still have joy, although way down deep. It might be mixed with confusion or sadness or anger for a while. But it will remain. I know my Savior loves me. And I trust in His goodness and His plan. So there are no “but what-if…”s to ponder, for me. I’m strivin’ for holiness – a cleansing of sin – a searching and doing of the Word – Godliness. I read somewhere that along with it, if you have contentment as well, there is great gain.
We moved to Oregon without a steady job or place to live, but just 3 weeks after the move, everything would change. We didn’t know about how Rick’s business would explode with dependable leads, making it possible for us to move from my parents’… to an apartment… to an amazing home in less than 6 months.
But God knew.
Portland was added to the Nat’l campaign. I didn’t know the first thing about large-event planning.
But God knew.
(owner of a sign shop)… he didn’t know what to do.
But God knew.
My new friend saw the signs on my car. And reached out to me. Out of desperation. She didn’t know how or if she would be received.
But God knew.
Before the New Year rolls around with all its goal for the future, and my holiday decorations are all packed up in their 18 gal.bins and stashed against the garage wall, I thought I’d take a few moments to reminisce about Christmas and 2011.
Every Christmas brings with it a different combo of family with which to spend good time – eating, laughing, unwrapping, celebrating and relaxing. This year, 2011, it included
Christmas Eve-Eve ~ We welcomed Rick & Jan into town from Southern California. They made the long drive up to Portland just to see us kids and grand kids. It was pretty special! We all went in on a Greenberg turkey that Jamie thought of ordering way in advance and brought with her. Jan stopped by Thriftway for some extra ingredients to complete our dinner that turned out to be so yummy. Riley, 3, had fun running around the house with Bray and Angel, until his obsession with brownies got him in some trouble. Bray absolutely loved his personalized ATM machine to help him save and Angel, her Barbie Beach House from Granny & Papa Rick (and Amazon.com)! Tyler was here too, which made the evening extra special. Here’s a link to some more thoughts on this evening – as well as some more shots!
Christmas Eve ~ We slept in, our kiddos re-organized their gifts for the 3rd or 4th time, and we watched “It’s a Wonderful Life” – well, the kids and I did. Rick who I am convinced has some kind of repressed horrid memory having to do with classic movies and/or traditions in general, escaped the house for some last-minute shopping. It was still a special time for me because it was B & A’s 1st time ever watching the Jimmy Stewart movie…forever a classic in my book – one that I remember watching (or at least having on TV, muted, during the festivities) while I was growing up. Braylon especially, seemed to like it…which made my heart smile. Speaking of movies, Bray opened his present from Gamma and Papa Bob – and he cannot wait to purchase it when it comes out 1/17: the movie they saw in the theater together when Gamma was here visiting at Halloween: Courageous…+ some extra cash to save. And Angel & I got to put her new Hello Kitty sheets, pillow cases & decorative pillow on her new full bed, with a giant smile. Thank you Pilands!! I, still with no make up on, opened up my gift from Rick – an iHome speaker system for my iPod touch, a personalized coffee mug written on by all 3 of them, and the unexpected.
He’d paid off the ring I have been paying on for the last year. A new, white-gold wedding ring with feminine sparkles and swirls. After 14 years, my original ring was pretty worn out, constantly losing little diamonds, snagging its prongs on clothing & the main diamond ring was was not even centered/secured right on the wrap. The silver-colored rhodium plating would also rub off so the gold would show through on the highest parts, every year or so. I was pretty patient if I do say so myself! And it totally paid off. I thought it’d be at least another year til I was able to finish paying on it with extra money, here & there. But it’s on order now…being made for me from scratch, and should be in by the 10th or so. I’m keeping the main diamond that was originally from Janis’s wedding ring… just using it in the new one now. So SpeCiAl!
That evening we piled our things into the car and headed to the Bebb’s for presents and a delicious Indian food feast – tenderly marinated chicken in an Indian sauce over rice, I brought Pita bread w/this home-made thick cucumber-mint-yogurt dip stuff – Raita? …and home made brownies w/real whipped cream. You can always count on Charity to bring good food to gatherings. Fresh veggies, a pretty sun-dried tomato & basil cream-cheese and cracker plate, and lots more.
My mom & dad both broke the rule of not getting ea.other gifts – he got her a big canvas painting/photo of their favorite beach in Hawaii, and she got him a real ukulele – which he’s really gettin’ quite good at playin’!