As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this nearly six-acre tract of land, this farmhouse, this domain—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.


Wednesday, December 31, 2014

{Gathering the Moments} December





As I gathered the moments of December, this glorious month in which we celebrate His first coming, something stood out to me: gatherings. This month was full of them!

~ We girls met Kristin and her girls for a performance of the Nutcracker Ballet.
~ Ron, Bekah, and I gathered with our not-so-faraway family when we traveled to meet our brand new grandson, Paul. What a happy weekend that was!
~ Then we celebrated the twelfth birthday of our oldest grandchild, Gavin.
~ Kati, Bekah, and I made time for one of our favorite Christmas traditions, a girls' outing to Starbucks for holiday beverages.
~ Joanne and I enjoyed an impromptu "Mama Coffee"...only this time it was snowflake tea instead of coffee. It doesn't really matter what we're sipping. What matters is our connection.
~ Forty-six people gathered for Ron's extended family Christmas party where there's lots of talking and laughter and singing.
~ After a quiet "just us" Christmas Eve, Christmas Day was filled with festivity, family, food, and fun!
~ And all this week we have gathered...a party at my aunt's house, visiting at Kristin's house and at my parents' house, and a gathering here with the Rabes.  


Last year, all of autumn and the holiday season was marked with sadness. Although life has changed (and we have changed), this season was marked by joy. Even so, we remember those who are in their own time of sadness and grief, and we pray for His grace to surround them.

This month, we have enjoyed many gifts. The gift of joy. Thoughtful gifts from family and friends. The gifts of fellowship and family. But they all pale in comparison when we consider the gift of eternal life made possible by Jesus!

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
II Corinthians 9:15





I thank all of you who have participated in this "Gathering the Moments" link-up over this past year, whether by linking your own post or by visiting my "moments" or those of the other participants. 

This is the final month of the party. Oh, I'll continue to gather my moments at the end of each month, and I invite you to do the same. It is such a good thing to reflect and to see how He has guided and provided. My heart is always moved to thankfulness. The only thing that will change is that I won't be hosting a link-up. 

But again this month, I am inviting you to join me in "gathering the moments." You may wish to share two or three photos, or several collages, or bunches of photos...with words, or without words. The link-up below will be a gathering place for us to reflect and share and connect. (The link-up will stay open for a week, so you have plenty of time to gather.)



Thinking About Home



Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Christmas Visit With Friends


The celebrations continue...

Christmas punch and hors d'oeuvres were waiting on the island. A pot of soup simmered on the stove; homemade bread and salad fixings paraded down the countertop, as we all awaited the arrival of our dear friends, the Rabes. "We" were the four of us and our daughter Kristin and her family. On this visit, "the Rabes" were Tim and Deanna, Rachel, Sarah, and Kyle, as well as Tim's sweet mama who is visiting from Florida.














handmade by Deanna


And what a delightful day we had! 

After a few moments of shyness, Ben's silliness broke the ice for the children. Or was it the bin of Lego? Whatever it was, they all played together happily until it was time for Kristin's family to leave.

With the children happy, we adults entertained ourselves with lots of conversation...all together, in small groups, one-on-one. With a little prompting, Tim's mom told us stories. What fun! She has lived a very full life and we loved hearing snippets. "Grammy" is a young 93 years old; she even joined the young adults in a game of Mexican Trains!

How the hours flew by! They always fly when we're sharing time together. 

Thank you, dear Rabes, for taking a little road trip to share a Christmas visit with us! A visit with kindred spirits is always refreshing! 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

The Gift of Christmas Day
































There are days when you live to the fullest. 

Do you know what I mean? So many days we just move from one thing to another, doing the next thing and checking things off the list and when you get to the end of the day you hardly know how you got there. 

But then there are days when you really live. 

You savor each moment. You see not just the present, but glimpses of the past, and hints of the future. It's almost as if you are an observer of your own life, and you pause and watch and enjoy little moments. You are filled with love. You are filled with gratitude. You are awed by beauty...of the big things and the little things. And your heart is overwhelmed by His gifts and by His grace and by your own unworthiness.

Christmas day was one of those days. My heart was full. 

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