Tag Archives: thanksgiving

#thesearethemoments November’s Song

Yes, it is true. From my Family-Table-November Spotify playlist (see it to your right), I can’t get the song by Sara Evans off my mind. It may just end up being the song of the month for me. However, I really have no idea what the lyrics are, except:

These are the moments I thank God that I’m alive

These are the moments I’ll remember all my life

I have all I waited for – And I could not ask for more…

That’s all I know. And I am pretty sure it is a love song and probably a codependent love song where she is putting ALL her stock in one person for her happiness, which is a lot of pressure for said person.  Haha.

#thesearethemoments aspens and blue sky

Just another November the 8th…I’ve enjoyed 55 or so of them so far.

But, the words I do know, the ones above, which I bookend with lots ‘o humming and made-up-lyrics, are reminding me to look for the simple moments I should be grateful for, the little, everyday snippets of life that don’t seem to amount to much, but are the Jenga blocks that make up my ordinary living, and give structure and solidity to dreams.

I went to sleep last night to the sound of the sweetest November rain. It signals a change on its way from the sunny, amazingly beautiful fall weather we have been having. Snow is headed this direction, they say. But oh, the sound of that cleansing, whole, full-on rain. That was a good moment.

It morphed in to the brightest sunrise, blue skies and raindrops sparkling on the windows. The earth was rejoicing for the deep, refreshing drink. My Aspens are half empty now, but the way the remaining leaves dance against that Colorado-blue sky takes my breath away. It’s such a savory moment. I’m dining on it still, as I write.

#thesearethemoments Hunter and 4 freckled-lemonades

It was Grandparent’s Day at Hunter’s school yesterday. So I reciprocated by making it Hunter Day. :)

#thesearethemoments Hunter smiles

The waitress gave him another one to go! Ay-yi-yi!

The grand-boys are here (it was a sleepover): Gavin (11) and Hunter (10). I cannot believe how many dishes they generate in such a short time. Meals, snacks, snacks after snacks. Soda-pop glasses, hot-chocolate mugs. Candy wrappers piled on the coffee table (blame their grand-poppa, I tell you!) and some candy wrappers just found a spot on the floor beside the couches where my little men piled blankets and cushions for movie-watching, boy-flicks. And as I load my arms with the dishes and debris to head for the kitchen, I can’t help but sing it, I could not ask for more.

We all make bucket lists and have grand plans and create goals and make Pinterest boards of exotic places we want to see and things we wish to do. But I never even took my kids to Disney World. Can you even believe that? And I took French all through junior high and high school and I have never gone to Paris. These trips would have made for the most incredible memories, moments-of-a-lifetime, for sure.

But this morning, my cutie-pie grand-boys helped me move the sofa away from the wall and what did we find? Birthday gift-wrap wads. We have gift-wrap paper fights at the end of gift-opening, every birthday. All the kids go after Uncle Rocky with zeal, because he deserves it for always getting me right in the face! And there they were: remnants of a happy celebration past.

And there were 3 or 4 Hot Wheels behind the couch because Malakai is all about those cars these days and a few are bound to crash off the back of the furniture at the speed they are going. A few crayons were there because this house is about my children’s children being able to express themselves creatively. And some wayward gum balls from the gum ball machine that supplies the grandbebes when they are here were back there, too. Those are things I found behind the sofa. And I could not ask for more.

malakai chasing the red ball #thesearethemoments

Kai-Kai is a boy on the go.

When Dave squeezes the middle of the toothpaste tube because he likes to do that, I try to remember that he thinks I tighten it all up from the end just so he can. And when he leaves the bread on the counter right beside the bread basket instead of in it {which may or may not make me slightly crazy}, I know it is just one of the things I will always remember about him. I’ll remember that he loves me like crazy, that he pays too much for rib-eye steaks {“Wait until they are on sale, honey!“} because he knows I love them and I could eat steak everyday. I’ll always remember that he wants to close the bedroom windows through the winter, but he freezes all night because I need fresh air. These are the moments, ya know? And I could not ask for more.

#thesearethemoments Hunter Day

The baby who cries all night – means we have a baby to love, a little person to usher in to their destiny. Used diapers are a sign of health and life. Lots and lots of life. :)

The dirty dishes piling up in the sink, means we had food to eat. There are so many things in the fridge that I can’t decide what to have for breakfast.

The relationship that needs mending means we have people who mean enough to put forth the effort. We’re so lucky.

How on earth did we end up with this much laundry, except that we have so many clothes from which to choose? Leaf-blowers make tidy piles for us and a big truck comes and takes the autumn debris away, no-muss, no-fuss. Toys are scattered around the house because they don’t even fit in the designated boxes. Kids are loud, parties make messes, meal-making comes around three times a day, day after day. They are just mundane moments passing by. They are not glamorous, nor brag-worthy.

But they are surely divine – the things for which we can be grateful. Day in and day out, one foot in front of the other, faithfulness in the little things – I could not ask for more.

#thesearethemoments Gavin crashing

My life and times and seasons are soundtracked by songs and melodies. October was “Autumn Leaves,” feeling memories and melancholy drift by like the leaves of an old tree.

#thesearethemoments Hunter and Gavin

But November, November’s song is really less Sara Evans and more thankfulness, reflection, gratefulness for life, the things we’ll end up remembering with deep fondness. Maybe less about trips to Disney World. And more about all the candy wrappers we were privileged to scoop up and throw away.

NOTE: Ohmygoodness. I am just about to hit publish and in come my guys, Dave-the-husband, and Gav and Hunter, the first two of my nine beloved grandchildren.  They all three tracked mud all the way through the house. After I had vacuumed. Oh yes, they did! Haha. Oh my…

These days, these monotonous, wearisome, repetitive, routine and sometime tedious days: “These are the moments I thank God that I’m alive.” #thesearethemoments

What are yours? What makes you thank God you’re alive?

The Family Table, Songs of Blessing for November

I romanticize the family table.

I like the clinking of glasses and silverware, silly conversations and good music on the stereo.  I like the loud voices and the heaping plates of hot food. I like the life that fills our hearts and our tummies at the table. All of my best daydreams for the future include meals with my people. Kind of like these Pinterest images. :)

pinterest family table 1

And especially as we get close to Thanksgiving, I have familia on my mind and in my heart (the ones who’ve passed and those far away, but also the ones close, the present – those we almost forget or neglect for the nearness, sometimes).

I put together a little family-table playlist for November. It has silly songs, some Thanksgiving songs, a rousing Turkey in the Straw banjo number. There are food songs, happy songs, quiet ones, an unusually high ratio of country songs, some serious songs of blessing and thanks and some I’ll-remember-you–you-remember-me type numbers. You know, because. Family. And my melancholy tendencies. Haha.

Counting our blessings

counting my blessings

The song, Count Your Blessings, as sung by Bing Crosby in White Christmas makes the list twice. Because Amy Grant does it so beautifully, too. And it’s doubly-good advice, anyway.

What? You haven’t seen the movie, THE movie? Well, then, here is a little taste!

Now, don’t mind me. I have to go because Kai-Kai and I are happily dancing to the My Sweet Potato instrumental number. Because he is my little sweet potato! Feel free to enjoy my November songs, too, if you’d like. :)

pinterest family table 2

“I will follow my dreams wherever
They take me
I will stand upon the mountain and look down upon the seashores;

I will stand up when it seems
That my troubles might break me
I will listen even though I know I’ve
Heard it all before
But I’ll always remember
The family table…” -Bill Withers

pinterest hymns and verses

“I could not ask for more.”


Blog Repost: Have a Lovely Thanksgiving Day, My Friends and Familia!

From 11.22.12, see original post {{ here}}

The biggest meal of the year.

I find it crazy the amount of food we gobble-gobble up on Thanksgiving.  But there is something so ingrained about it, isn’t there?  I was watching an old movie the other day and they mentioned the Thanksgiving meal: there was turkey and ham and stuffing and mashed potatoes and gravy and cranberry, too.  For all the dishes that come and go, the menu doesn’t stray too much.  Even when we get crazy and add Cajun or Mexican sides (or even go vegetarian), it is pretty hard for most people I know to do away with these traditional fixings all together.

My own very cosmopolitan and trend-setting children by day, at Thanksgiving, are among the most traditional in their desires.  They will gather here today, Dave and Tara and Hunter magoo, Steph and Tris and the three Kelley kids (Guini, as always, will have first dibs on the wishbone), Tredessa and Ryan (this is their first Thanksgiving as a married couple, because the wedding was 2 days after Thanksgiving last year).  Rocky and Jovan and the 2 little girlies will be here and Stormie and Saber-the-German (Shepherd) and The Garcias and Leif (Ryan’s younger brother) will join us, too.

And as I stood at the counter this morning chopping vegetables and mixing ingredients in a quiet, sunny kitchen (Christmas music drifting in from the room where Dave is rearranging every piece of furniture we own to accommodate our little table for 23), I just found myself loving that we go to the trouble anyway.  There is something in the ritual of it, in fixing this huge meal that reminds us of the sacred and sweet and all the blessings we have had and all the blessings that will come to be.  And it is just this bountiful moment in time to thank God for all of it.

In everything GIVE THANKS for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.  1 Thessalonians 5. 18

And standing there, knowing we will have more than we need to eat and eat too much, I remembered all the Thankskgivings of my life (there have been more than 50, now) and how the crowd has changed so much.  All the Grandmas and Grandpas are gone now.  Some of the aunts and uncles have passed, too.  I remember thinking as a kid they were all trying to starve me to death because the meal was never ready “on time,” but when finally we could eat, ooooooh-delish!  Then later: mommy, my tummy hurts, I ate too much (Tara was 4 the first time this happened to her).  How glorious to have all the pumpkin pie I could ever want (and my mom always made THE BEST pumpkin pie, until Stormie came along).

thanksgiving chalkboard

I thank God for it all, the family I was born into and all the times they crammed all of us into tiny house with tables and tables and food and we ate all day long (pre-microwave, people!).  Mostly at Grandma Bakers, we also met Aunt Sue’s once.  But Aunt Rosie’s quite a bit, too…Aunt Rosie introduced me to the romantic notion of one very long table for all of us eat together – no kid table!  I am doing that for my grandbebes now.  They like it!  And I love that the aunts and uncles and all the cousins would descend from near and far because even though we were wall-to-wall people, the importance of all of us together saying “Thank-you, Lord,” was valued.  Stop life and say thanks – this was the message imparted to my heart.  We may not have a lot, we are just regular people, but we are blessed and we say thanks to You, Lord.

Oh my, in spite of their humanness and mistakes and oddities as a family (plentiful, for sure), oh how I cherish the fact that they all helped me settle on the solid foundation that is Jesus Christ.

Then there were the years the extended family times dissipated as grandparents died, and  my siblings and I, with our growing families, would gather with my parents (the new matriarch and patriarch).  The last time were all together for Thanksgiving was 1991, I believe.  That era ended too soon as we were living all over the nation, but we’d always touch base and today I think of each of them with so much love my heart actually hurts.  Happy Thanksgiving, my brothers  (by birth and the one we got when my sister married you) and my little sister and all my beautiful sisters by God’s design (and marriage to my little brothers).  Happy Thanksgiving to the nieces and nephews and to the whole big, colorful family I married into.  Be blessed, I decree it.

in everything give thanks decor cut outs

And how blessed and grateful I am to get to have this Thanksgiving feast with my own babies and their families today.  The little cousins will file away so many details of this day as trivial: running up and down the stairs, playing dress-up, maybe coloring and painting together or playing a board game.  They will eat and eat and be back in an hour for more.  They will go home totally unaware that in 40 or 50 years they will be standing at their kitchen counter assembling food on a sunny morning for a Thanksgiving meal for their beloveds and suddenly the memories in sharp detail, of being at Nonna’s house so many Thanksgivings past, will suddenly rush back in “like waves  upon the shore” and they will, like I am today, thank God for all the Thanksgiving Thursdays family gathered just to show gratefulness.  And they will know that is it good to give thanks unto the Lord.

Psalm 71.17-19

Since my youth, God, you have taught me,

and to this day I declare your marvelous deeds.

Even when I am old and gray,

do not forsake me, my God,

till I declare your power to the next generation,

your mighty acts to all who are to come.

Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens,

you who have done great things.

Who is like you, God?

My intent in writing this blog, when I began it a thousand words ago, was to say this (I am so wordy, huh?) in ONE paragraph:  Happy Thanksgiving, from our family to yours.  Like all families, the treasure must be guarded and tended like a garden to make sure it lives and thrives.  We are just normal people with issues and oddities, too.  But today, we gather in His name to tell Him we are grateful.  This foundation is firm.  So, I pray you will be blessed and happy in all things today, just as I am praying for my family.

I simply cannot help being so graphomaniacal.  Just can’t. xxoo

Happy Thanksgiving.

My Table is Full of Good Wishes

During an agonizing {excruciatingly painful} Broncos versus Patriots game (the very reason I do  not want to watch football), Guini and Gemma and I made 33 air-dry clay wishbones for Thanksgiving.

Since the turkey can only provide us with one, and everybody always wants a chance to make a wish and win the contest ~ well, we are solving the problem by providing every single family member a wishbone of their very own.

wishbones for thanksgiving

While a perfectly sweet, light snow is drifting down this morning, the wishbones are just drying in the air (www.sculpey.com).  Tomorrow I’ll spray paint them…gold, maybe.  They are very magical wishbones, you see.  For, no matter who gets the bigger piece after they are broken, both contestants will get their wishes!  Who says so?  Guini, Gemma and me.  That’s who.

I saw this project on Pinterest, and you can see the tutorial from the Oh Happy Day blog {{here}}.

So Much Thanksgiving Food, So Little Fridge Space

Here is how I have decided to see the cooking and food consumption for Thanksgiving Day:

Cook one day, eat 7.  Yes, seven!  You know – like those blogs and cooking shows teach?  You can cook big one day and prepare lots of meals ahead?  Well, break out the Tupperware, my friends.  Let’s just admit that three major meat offerings (turkey, Texas brisket and a spiral ham) plus dumplings and mashed potatoes and gravy and 37 other sides, not to mntion a half dozen desserts and asssorted appetizers = this is what you’e going to be eating for a period of {safe, of course} time.

tredessas wedding

This was actually part of the dessert buffet at Dessa’s wedding two days after Thanksgiving 2011, ahh…good times

Prepare for it, Dave.  It’s all leftovers until December 5…or so.

Sweeeeeeeeeet November

How does November smell?

Spicy, like cinnamon.


How does November look?

Golden, like autumn squash.


How does November sound?

Crunchy, as you shuffle through the leaves.


What color is November?

November is Topaz, a multi-faceted golden, orangy, yellowish amber Topaz.


What is November’s mood?

Lovely, filled with gratefulness and love; chock full of thanksgiving.


What is the texture of November?  Does it feel like something?

Yes.  It feels like a chenille throw, soft and fuzzy, warm and cozy, by firelight.  Naturally.


How does November taste?

Sweet.  Like the purest honey.  Sweet is November.


Remember the movie called “Sweet November” ?

Overall, pretty lame, as Keanu {so very cute, but seemingly pretty empty-ish and not much good at dramatic parts), plus the melodramatic storyline will most usually end up (did you recall hoiw much hope I had for “A Walk in the Clouds”?   *sigh…).  Anyhow, rather unsatisfactory and weird story, but a few interesting quotes I am fond of and the title is nice! ;p

Nelson:  Why a month?    Sara:  Because it’s long enough to be meaningful, but short enough to stay out of trouble.

Nelson:  Try to be wrong once in awhile.  It’d do my ego good.

Sara:  You’re my immortality, Nelson.

Sara:  Nelson, do you want to be my November?    Nelson:  Yes.

Nelson:  November is all I know, and all I ever want to know.

Nelson:   This is it.  Life will never be better or sweeter than this.


If only the movie had been as lovely as these lines…FYI:  A really really great movie to see each November is “Pieces of April”   starring Katie Holmes.  It is a sweet Thanksgiving movie (thank-you Rob and Carol Ann for introducing me to it!).

PICTURED:  The K-kids – Gavin, Guinivere and Gemma; and Hunter-Magoo!


One Week Later

c-thanksgiving-gavin img_6233

We gave thanks.  And we ate…a lot.

taras-152 img_6266

Today is trash day and I threw away enough leftovers this morning to have fed the whole group again!  Tsk.  I mean that gravy?  Was a.m.a.z.i.n.g.  Really.  Amazing!  If I do say so myself.  Lots of other wonderful food, too, by all the great cooks who came to the table.  Stef & Wrex’s famous Red Hot Jello, and Tristan’s homemade bread (o the toast I have enjoyed this week) and Dessa’s corn casserole and Tara’s o-so-creamy mashed potatoes and Leah’s Mexican Pasta (the woman cooked like it was all in her court) and Stormie’s fabulous, fabulous pumpkin pies and so much more.  It was 6 or 7 meals in one!

img_6248 img_6305 

We sang karaoke like maniacs.

Wrex reeeeeeeallly loves to sing those country-boy-tractor-woman-lovin’ songs!  Us girls all did a rousing rendition of “You make me feel like a natural woman!”  And songs by the Monkees were popular!

The people who got the “wear black” memo.

taras-148 cooks-in-the-kitchen

Left: Dessa. Leah, Stef, Ali, Stephanie, Dave, Stormie. Right: three cooks in their aprons.

Those Thanksgiving boots were made for walking.

c-boots-1 c-boots-2

Ali, Stormie, Jovan, Stef, Tara, Tredessa

Boots were definitely the fashion footwear of the day.

We played the arguing game* and Wii.

And a certain rather large contingency disappeared into the basement for XBox 360…or something?  Dave even brought out his childhood electronic football game so the kiddos could see an antique toy. : )  

*The “arguing game” is actually Cranium Party Play-Off, available at Starbucks.

Sweet children ran and tumbled and jumped and spinned round and round.

img_6216 img_6255 taras-155

img_6303 img_6306

Gavin and Guini, Hunter and Gemma, Averi and Samuel and Moses.  They got along so well and were so sweet!

Family, by blood, by the Spirit, by choice.

taras-163 taras-157

Tredessa and Tara; Andy and Leah

taras-149 taras-156 taras-158

Leah and Tara; Tara and DP; Stefanie and Wrex (aka “Sexy Wrexy”)


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Full of Thanks

Last year’s list of things to be thankful about:  http://www.jeanierhoades.com/stuff-i-actually-think/so-thankful


I walk in the door just before dark while a twilight indigo still colors the sky.  Home from a wonderful Heaven Fest meeting where we thanked God for what He has allowed us to be a part of and dreamed big dreams for 2010, Tredessa pulls up to the curb from the same meeting to visit.  Into the house she goes, arms full of her current Christmas projects, so excited to pour her love into the gifts she is planning for her siblings.  Dave has been working on the “big” tree, stringing 5 or 6000 lights on the 12-footer.  The whole lower level is ablaze in light, Stormie in the kitchen baking her famous pumpkin pies with Martha Stewart’s dough recipe.  Spicy cinnamon scents the pre-Thanksgiving air, even as Christmas music is playing.  We are moving furniture to accomodate the people who will join us around the table tomorrow to give thanks.

The house is warm and happy.  But I can’t resist the deepening blue sky and nippy air so I head out for a vigorous walk through the neighborhood.  And I think about simple things that make me happy and things I am thankful for and how sometimes I have selfishly pouted over not getting what I wanted when really, I have been blessed so far beyond what I even deserve.  I am blessed.  I need to say it more, I need to recognize it more.  I need to remember and speak it out and be grateful for all that has been and all that is.    I have been blessed.  And it is the simple stuff that just makes life so rich, isn’t it?  The little things, the silly surprises and the unexpected moments of grace – the stuff we almost forget to acknowledge.  So as I passed houses lit up in the emerging night, already smelling good food as my neighbors are surely preparing for tomorrow like we are, I listed off simple things for which I am grateful, deeply thankful and I thanked God, from Whom all blessings flow.  He has been so good to me.


5 little reasons to be thankful: Gavin, Hunter, Guini, Gemma and Averi

Simple things for which I give thanks:

a gentle rain…the smell of rain (not enough of that here)…being able to remember the lyrics to any 1970s song because I lost so much memory 3 years ago-it makes me happy to be able to sing along with Karen Carpenter (“Long ago and oh so far away…”)…currently having 2 really great-fitting pairs of jeans – seriously!  That is a miracle!…that pumpkin pie with whipped cream is going to be so. flipping. awesome!…true friends, true even when you are a crud…new friends – so much ahead, but you just know when you have met a “keeper”…old friends, because they knew you “when”,  in a certain time and space and even though you come from nowhere, they remember you somewhere in time and they become your roots and your home, the keeper of the proof of you…and good friends, the ones who count forever even if you don’t get to see them as often as you’d like…I’m thankful for the tire swing where I first started singing love songs from my heart to Jesus…autumn colors and what my friends are now calling “Jeanie green”…

…the brilliantly-colored sunset I witnessed from the Northern Hills Church cafe during our meeting and all sunsets I have enjoyed this year…sunny days are here again!…crystal-clear views of snow-capped mountains these November days that remind me of God’s faithfulness…I am happy about things that make me smile a real, genuine, heartfelt, eye-wrinkle-inducing smile (“polite” smiles aren’t, really, and forced smiles are tragic)…wry humor…my old mangy, but o-so-loving dog…quiet mornings and strong, black coffee…the girls downstairs singing “My Heart Will Go On” together- right this second-very loudly, so cute!…don’t you just love music?….

…a full moon…3 jackets from the beautiful Stef at the swap, I love jackets because coats make me too hot…the fireplace in the early dark morning so when I get out of the shower I can remain toasty and being hot is a good thing…google, that’s right, google.com, I love it.  It has changed everything for this information junkie…I am thankful that dark chocolate is actually good for your health…

…So grateful for the seed catalogs that will be arriving in the next couple of weeks reminding me that these short days and long nights will have an end and spring will come just when I think I cannot go on…good conversation…funny conversation…Tredessa and Stormie are on a singing spree having moved past “My Heart Will Go On” to “Hotel California” and then Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire.”  It is making me smile an eye-wrinkle-inducing smile…I am thankful for a movie or book or point of view on some one’s blog that teaches me something or surprises me or just plain entertains me…for anything that can actually entertain me, because that is not an easy feat…Can you believe the girls are singing “Dancing Queen!?”…that’s entertainment!

…for God trusting me to be a mom…for God just giving me 5 grandbebes and all the ones to come…for great siblings and parents and a husband who has endured me…for the great GRACE of God (the Holy Spirit empowering me to be who He called me to be and to do what He called me to do)…for these things and more, I am thankful.  And I am humbled.

Thanks, anyway

Too much food.

The funny thing about Thanksgiving…is that you spend 12 hours shopping for it and then chopping and cooking and braising and blanching. Then it takes 20 minutes to eat it and everybody sort of sits around in a food coma, and then it takes four hours to clean it up. ~Ted Allen

 screenshot shenandoah jimmy stewart

Don’t be like Charlie

Jimmy Stewart’s character on the classic movie, Shenandoah – Charlie Anderson: “Lord, we cleared this land. We plowed it, sowed it, and harvested it. We cooked the harvest. It wouldn’t be here and we wouldn’t be eating it if we hadn’t done it all ourselves. We worked dog-bone hard for every crumb and morsel, but we thank you Lord, just the same for the food we’re about to eat, amen.”

No, that is not right.

A Thankful Tree, the Flu, a Light Snow and a “Blogoversary”



Can I just say the sooner the leftovers are gone, the better (except for Stormie’s pumpkin pies)?  But all delish.

We did a “thankful” tree on Thanksgiving, everyone filling out little “leaves” and hanging them with things for which we are grateful written.

Thumbnails (click for larger image):

  • The Thankful Tree
  • Wrex, whose medium was colored pencils, wanted his art on the “family art wall.”  The picture was drawn by Amy Jo Becker and includes the lyrics to a little turkey ditty (Five Fat Turkeys are We) to the tune of a song from The Mikado.
  • Turkey-bread by Stefane (who, as a devoted Texan, also introduced us to “Armadillo Eggs”-which are fabulous!)
  • Fake Thanksgiving-food cupcakes by Tredessa and Stormie for Jovan, who does not like one thing  – not one  Thanksgiving-related food (not turkey, not dressing, not mashed potatoes, nor gravy…not green bean casserole, not cranberries, not even pumpkin pie!)!  So the girls made cupcakes (which she loves) that LOOKED like Thanksgiving food using icing, white chocolate, Starburst candies and melted caramel.

    The Flu.

    In the middle of the night following Thanksgiving, I got hit with a full-on, horrid stomach flu, complete with fever, chills, and wrenching.  I won’t say more.  If it hadn’t been for the entire Kelley family having contracted and suffered through it just before Thanksgiving (Gavin does go to public school now – germ breeding grounds!), I’d have been thinking food poisoning.  But no, just a very untimely stomach bug!  So I spent Friday, while my husband and daughters were all shopping madly, in bed – when I wasn’t running to the bathroom.  Truly a “Black Friday” for me!

    I wish the google image above really did reflect my 3 a.m. view Friday morning!

    Snow at Last.

    At about 11 o’clock last night, we looked outside to see the most beautiful snow.  My nephew Zach from Montana, living with us while he completes a ministerial internship here, had just asked 2 days ago, “Yeah-so when do you guys get snow here?”  I am not a huge fan, but since it has so politely remained largely at bay this year so far, it was a welcome sight.  This morning the grass is almost covered and every branch has a puffy white coating and it is lovely and makes you want to watch Christmas movies and wrap presents.

    This is the snow-on-the-branches view out the back door this morning at 7:15 a.m., just after the bunny rabbit, who’d been looking in at me, hopped away.


    Teena from Toronto left me a “Happy Blogoversary” message this morning and I realized that, yes, it is indeed my “blogoversary.”  How did she know that?

    Two years ago today, I started blogging.  The kids found and bequeathed the image that adorns my blog banner to get me started.  They all said she looks just like me, and I am happy they understand the inner me, for surely that is what they see. 

    To blog was both exhilerating and trepidatious for me.  I was so afraid to hit the “post” button back in those days, fearful of what my words would reveal of me, but also needing a place to tell some truth and speak some words I was struggling to communicate, especially to my children.  I was so cautious and agonized over how much to say, carefully wondering how much I could really tell truthfully, lest my truth hurt some one else.  You can read my very first blog here. (from 11.29.06)

    Now I blather on with both spiritual epiphanies as they come (they are for me, anyway) and the torrid, word-filled minutia of my life (like telling you about my stomach flu, for crying out loud!!).  This is my 398th post and I have 30 drafts in the folder waiting for me to finish off and publish – there is no end in sight, people!  And I always wonder about when I am gone – if my offspring should really ever begin to read this stuff, investigating it as they look for meaning and understanding of their past and their own lives – how really weird will they think I was? 

    It all remains to be seen…from the ever-graphomaniacal Jeanie

    NOTE TO FAMILY:  To all the Rhoadeses in every direction-hope Thanksgiving was warm and wonderful for you.  To the whole Moslander bunch, far and wide, always think of you and miss you on these days. 1991 was our last everyone-together Thanksgiving, and that does not seem right!