I've been missing in action in the blogosphere for 3 months! I've been busy living life without any leftover time or energy to write about it! But it's a new season and a new year, and with the rest of the world, I've turned a new page on the calendar.
Before proceeding I just wanted to briefly fill in the blanks...
*For the first time in as long as I can remember, I am happy to say that I fully embraced this past Fall season. I love summer so much that I usually slip into a little self-pity party when it's all over ~ something like being told to put all my toys away and go to bed. I don't know why this past year was different. Perhaps it was a good fruit from my earlier resolve to live each and every day intentionally and to the fullest. I loved decorating my home more than ever with pumpkins and leaves and good smelling candles, and I also busied myself in my kitchen more than ever, enjoying fall soup making, baking, and just nesting in general. We were thrilled to have the opportunity to have our three SC grandboys stay with us for several days in early November while their parents celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary with a trip to NYC!
Pumpkin Spice Pancakes
*My brother Don finally had his stem cell transplant in mid-November. We are all thrilled that he is recovering well and gaining strength every day. His numbers are good, and he is back to work on a part time basis again. PRAYER CHANGES THINGS!
*Thanksgiving was way different for us this past year. For the first time ever, we had no kids or grandkids around our table. It was just us and our two mothers. I still did the traditional Thanksgiving meal, just on a somewhat smaller scale. We were able to talk in complete sentences, as I like to say when there aren't children around, so it was a special time with our moms. A highlight of the season was our participation in our church's Thanksgiving basket outreach.
My mom came over the day before Thanksgiving to help bake pies and make the turkey dressing~a longstanding tradition of ours!
*Our Christmas season was merry and bright! So many wonderful things to do in the month of December that have become traditions for us: The annual Christmas tree display at the Knight Center; the presentation of The Nutcracker at the Civic Theater; The Tuba Christmas concert at The EJ Thomas building; our church's annual Christmas concert...Hubby and I took an evening to do a craft together (small "blackboard" signs with names of Jesus to decorate three small pencil trees); much baking and crafting with the grandchildren...I hosted a small but fun afternoon Christmas Tea for my new swapping friends; Hubby played Santa to five families that I chose from among new friends as well, blessing 12 children on one snowy night! Our annual Lichi family Christmas party was a huge success, with four generations being present; church on Christmas Eve, my favorite day of the year... And to top it all off, our South Carolina family was here to spend a week with us, and we had 14 here for Christmas Day dinner and festivities.
*My heart is full, my body is tired, my mind is spinning with thoughts of the new year and all the opportunities, challenges, and possibilities that lie ahead. I am grateful for God's provision and care of us in the past year. And I'm looking forward to reconnecting with you here, my friends! Happy New Year and God bless us, everyone!