I am thinking/I am thankful for: being able to act as the "middleman" for two families in our neighborhood who provided another family's total Christmas. Getting the wonderful chance to see the joy of those who anonymously gave and see the heart felt gratitude from those who gratefully received. I got to call the mother and tell her that her children would have a Christmas. She had no idea that anything like this would happen. No request for help. A total surprise. The mother and father picked everything up at our house on the afternoon of Christmas Eve.
These types of things make this the sweetest part of my church calling as Relief Society president. A joy I'll absolutely never forget. This needy family was provided with bikes, a wagon, presents and more presents, and bags of groceries. I cried. The family cried.
From the kitchen: Lots of leftovers. Ham. "Funeral" potatoes (a regional food specialty). Fudge. Cookies. Dips. Chips. Seven boxes of sweet cereal. All the crap I never have around. I'm not handling all this temptation very well. Rationalizing while stuffing my face, "I'll just get rid of it by eating it away!" Where has all my will power gone? Why am I too lazy and sugar obsessed to make one of those green smoothies I'm always raving about? I'm tempted to give the kids the rest of the box of Dots and my half eaten bar of Swiss chocolate I got in my stocking. Or just be brave and throw it all away.
I am creating: I'm not in a creative mode anymore. I've had my fill, but Eliza is sure going strong in the art department. She's been engrossed in her new Beatrix Potter~ A Journal book we got her and is having fun playing around with this artist's "style" and technique.
I am going: to go downstairs in a bit to watch It's a Wonderful Life with the family.
I am hoping: I can feel motivation to go on a walk tomorrow morning. Haven't done anything besides one day of yoga last week. My hips and leg are hurting more than ever. Even with no running or walking at all for the last few weeks. They hurt even while sitting down or lying in bed. I'm worried and not sure what I can do about it.
I am reading: Am liking this book I got from Keith called The Minister's Wooing by Harriet Beecher Stowe. Wasn't aware of her other books besides Uncle Tom's Cabin. Found out that she didn't start writing until she was in her 40's and already was the mother of seven children. She was a part of a writing club called the "Semi-Colons". Now, that's inspirational.
Also looking forward to reading the C.S. Lewis books The Problem of Pain and The Screwtape Letters I got for Keith. I'm seeing now that it was very convenient for me to buy gifts for my family that I find "interesting" :)
I am hearing: a rousing game of Monopoly going on in the kitchen. I also hear Sam asking Gary some random question like, "What do you think we eat more of in sausage--sheep's liver or pig's small intestine?" (They're all engrossed in a new trivia book Isaac got for Christmas.)
Around the house: Jane has got the idea of what we're all going for this week.
One of my favorite things: Keith gave me this print of Brian Kershesnik's Nativity. The first time I saw the huge, stunning, mural- sized original at a local art museum, it absolutely took my breath away, my eyes filling with tears. Such power and emotion. I'm so excited to go get it framed. I'm debating whether to hang it in our bedroom or in the living room. It'll surely be up all year round.
I am wearing: new gray turtleneck sweater from Keith, navy cords, and white slippers.
A few plans for the rest of the week: lots of R&R. I need it. We all need it. Should add another R to it: Rest, Relaxation, and Recuperation. Keith has the week off, and it will be so nice for us all to spend time together. We'll go out to lunch with the kids tomorrow at a favorite local Peruvian restaurant and then go see the new Narnia movie. Helping in the kitchen for a church member's daughter's wedding reception on Tuesday night. Overnight, romantic, bed and breakfast interlude with Keith. Watching all the British mini-series movies I bought for Christmas, excited to share Cranford with Keith. (Can you believe he actually said that we need to bring it with us to watch on our getaway? What a cool husband.) New Year's Day brunch here with our dear friends and my mom.