Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I know that Christmas is over but I thought I'd share a few photos from you can see from the picture of our Christmas tree, we again got way more presents than we need or deserve. I generally spend much of the holidays feeling 'overly-blessed', even spoiled, by all of the gifts, cards, food options, and family members I have. This is magnified even more when we spend time in other countries, like we did this past summer.
Then there are my Grace in the photo of us in our Christmas finery (it rained a lot this year so we opted for the stylish black). I read the Christmas story from Luke many times in December, but always, always, when I get to the part in Luke 1 subtitled 'Mary's song', where she calls herself the most blessed of all women, I inevitably think, "Well, maybe, for back then, but she didn't have my family," for I do consider myself the most blessed mom of them all. Over this Christmas break, Grace is going on a mission trip to help homeless people in LA. And as a Christmas gift to his sister, Jason gave a donation to that will feed 75 kids in Africa a warm, nutritious meal. I know that getting to be the mom of Jesus was an amazing, unique blessing, but I'm just saying, I wouldn't trade this family for anything, and I think they're pretty hard to beat!
To keep me humble, I've added a photo of one final Christmas tradition - the annual burning of the wrapping paper in our barrel. Jamey noticed the white-trashiness of it, especially since you can see the trailer and canvas garage in the background. It started as a chance to keep the recycling bin from overflowing, and when the kids discovered that foil paper 'makes pretty colors', it stayed as an annual event. Like I said, it keeps me humble....
I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas, and, like me, you have had a chance to reflect on your blessings - I'm sure there are some, and it's good to count them as we head into the new year.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Neighborhood Birds

Lately we've had ducks wintering in our creek, and a flock of wild turkeys (probably about 30 total) hanging out in our neighbor's field in the early morning hours. I love seeing them when I take Jason to school. Yesterday I took Max The Dog down to see them, and he did absolutely nothing. Not even a sniff or a double-take. Pretty disappointing. Lazy, lazy dog! Although it was hard to see in the fog, I did notice that one turkey didn't quite look the same as the others. The tail was longer. It was confusing, until I realized that it wasn't a turkey at all! It seems my neighbor's peacock had crossed the street to hang out with some birds more his size (he normally lives in a yard with all chickens, and mostly bantams at that!). Later on, when the turkeys had gone back over to the pasture where they spend their afternoons, I saw that the peacock was back in his own yard, strutting around like the big man he is. And this morning, he was in the field again, an honorary member of the flock, hangin' with his turkey friends. It made me smile - I was happy for him. Maybe they swap stories about their different lives. Maybe he likes to show the ladies his fancy tail. Maybe he just enjoys being around large birds for a change. I don't know why I find all of this so entertaining....maybe it's from reading all of those "Mother West Wind" books when I was little.