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 home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—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.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Thanksgiving | 2021

The table was set for twenty this year.

We were missing some. Kati, Andrew, and their babies were celebrating with Andrew's family. Mom and Daddy were home because Daddy was feeling under the weather. They were all greatly missed! But we believe that you celebrate big with the ones who are here! 

Two folding tables were joined to our dining room table and all were draped with white tablecloths. We set a variety of brown transferware, a variety of white cloth napkins, and a variety of silverware. Lots of variety . . . but it all flowed together. 

It can be challenging to decorate a looooong table. One centerpiece doesn't feel like enough, and if we did one, it would be on the middle table which is one of the narrower ones. So we usually go with long-and-narrow meandering centerpiece which means a lot of items needed to fill the space. This year, we started with small burgundy potted mums from Trader Joe's and interspersed them with pewter candlesticks with white candles. We added two different sizes of votives with white candles. Then we  gathered all of the pumpkins and gourds we had in the house (we actually pulled some from outside too) and spread them along the length of the table. (We used all but the bright orange ones.) We added pomegranates and Bosc pears for a sort of cornucopia look. Finally, we strewed faux acorns and preserved leaves for filler and for color.  

The tables were set. I had my Thanksgiving playlist streaming through the speaker. Our portion of the feast was prepared. We were ready for our loved ones! 

Are these not the cutest little turkeys? 

Some father/daughter teamwork: Kristin is making the gravy, and Ron is filling the bowl with his mashed potatoes. 

For the first time, Nora accompanied our pre-dinner Thanksgiving hymn. ๐ŸŽœ๐ŸŽ

We all sang "For the Beauty of the Earth." 

Ron prayed the blessing, and then we sang Happy Birthday to Peter! Peter was born on Thanksgiving Day in 2011, and this year he had a Thanksgiving birthday. We had a big celebration for him! ๐Ÿ˜‰

If you've been reading here long, you may remember that we have "servers" each year for our Thanksgiving meal. It eliminates a long buffet line or having all of the food on the table which is already pretty full. I neglected to get a photo of the servers this year, but they were Kristin, Bekah, and Maddie and they did a fine job! 

Brian helped us with our Thanksgiving selfie, which we texted to faraway Kati and family. They texted one to us too. 

This year, Ron went around the table and had everyone share something that they were thankful for. He followed that with asking us our favorite food on the Thanksgiving table. 

This was Baby Joanna's first Thanksgiving.  I got to sit beside her at the table! After she ate, we played peekaboo with our napkins. So much fun! 

Eve made a beautiful apple pie!

Bekah and I took plates of food over to Mom and Daddy. 

This picture is gold! What helpful guys with servant hearts! 

The cousins presented a new musical creation, Thanksgiving themed. "Going to a New Land . . . " ๐ŸŽœ๐ŸŽ

Judah (3) checking out the dessert buffet! Lots of choices there, Judah!

I was happy with my choice! 

"It is good to give thanks to the LORD,
And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High."
Psalm 92:1

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

An Oreo Birthday Celebration

Once again, a family group chat inspired a birthday idea! (In October, it was the candy corn cookies.)

We had been discussing all of the many flavors of Oreos that are sold these days. So when we realized that the best Sunday for the celebration was going to be the Sunday before Thanksgiving, I decided to keep it simple and have an Oreo-themed party. Instead of birthday cake, we'd all bring a package or two of some special flavor of Oreos and have a taste test. 

On Sunday, we gathered to celebrate Peter and Paul, brothers whose birthdays are one day apart. Paul will turn seven on the 24th and Peter will be eleven on the 25th. The birthday boys requested ham and cheese sliders for lunch. Sarah made potato salad and we had individual bags of chips.

We labeled our cups with different flavors of Oreos, from "original" to "dulce de leche." (Who knew there were so many?)

Papa sneaking a kiss from pretty Joanna (8 months)

Our game was a quiz to see how well we knew the birthday boys.

Judah could not resist touching Joanna's head. It was the cutest thing! 

We sang to the boys and they blew out their candles which were perched in scoops of vanilla ice cream . . . 

. . .  and then everyone was invited to sample as many flavors of Oreos as they wished! ๐ŸŽ‰

We had Java Chip, Carrot Cake, Dark Chocolate, Chocolate Marshmallow, Mint, Chocolate Hazelnut, Fudge Covered, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie, Apple Cider Donut, and Birthday Cake Oreos. 

Then . . . discussion on favorites and losers. Very subjective! 

Before everyone left for home, I gave out baggies for everyone to take home some of their favorites, or some of ones they had not tried. 

It was a simple party, but lots of fun and we loved celebrating those special brothers! 

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

November {Catch Up?}


I believe I said that I would be posting more frequently in November. 

I had lots of plans. If you could take a peek into my draft folder, you'd see what I mean. But life is full these days and so I've decided that today's post will be a photo sampler of the past couple of weeks. 

I don't bake often these days, 
but when Ryan and family were coming for coffee and dessert,
I made a cranberry upside-down cake and a batch of spicy hermit bars.

Baby K is now 22 months / Joanna is 7 months

Someone arranged the Thanksgiving mice in the tea cups after playing with them. ๐Ÿงก

Can you see him?

Caleb (18 months) knew exactly what he wanted to wear on their nature walk!

The leaves were late to turn this year and peaked only last week.
I can't get enough of these views!

Annual Mother/Daughter Christmas Shopping Trip

He is neither a mother nor a daughter, but it was good to meet Tom (my uncle-friend) for lunch!

Does morning coffee taste better in the fall? 

Ellie (4 months) looks happy in her fall clothes.
Maybe she's an autumn girl like her Gran?

Bekah performed in a local production of All Together Now!, a Broadway review benefiting local theater companies. It was her first time in such a venue and she thoroughly enjoyed it!

Bekah's fan club!

A cozy November evening at home.

What have you been up to this November? 

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