Saturday, December 29, 2012

LAST CHRISTMAS PROJECT

Amazingly, I was finished with all of my family Christmas presents and all of my wrapping by Friday night, so I did one more project.
Who knew you could combine
 Nutter Butters
Pretzels
 Brown M&Ms
 Red M&Ms
 and Royal Icing
to get something so cute?
 I made lots, so I could send them home with the Nursery kids.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

TEACH THE CHILDREN THE TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS


The True Meaning Of Christmas

And Santa whispered, "Teach the children the true meaning of Christmas…"
This story by an unknown author is about the true meaning of the Christmas Symbols.


 
 
Late one Christmas Eve, I sank back, tired but content, into my easy chair. The kids were in bed, the gifts were wrapped, the milk and cookies waited by the fireplace for Santa. As I sat back admiring the tree with its decorations, I couldn't help feeling that something important was missing. It wasn't long before the tiny twinkling tree lights lulled me to sleep.

I don't know how long I slept, but all of a sudden I knew that I wasn't alone. I opened my eyes, and you can imagine my surprise when I saw Santa Claus himself standing next to my Christmas tree. He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot just as the poem described him, but he was not the "jolly old elf" of Christmas legend. The man who stood before me looked sad and disappointed, and there were tears in his eyes
.
"Santa, what's wrong?" I asked, "Why are you crying?"
"It's the children," Santa replied sadly.

"But Santa, the children love you," I said.
"Oh, I know they love me, and they love the gifts I bring them," Santa said, "but the children of today seem to have somehow missed out on the true spirit of Christmas. It's not their fault. It's just that the adults, many of them not having been taught themselves, have forgotten to teach the children."


"Teach them what?" I asked.

Santa's kind old face became soft, more gentle. His eyes began to shine with something more than tears. He spoke softly. "Teach the children the true meaning of Christmas. Teach them that the part of Christmas we can see, hear, and touch is much more than meets the eye. Teach them the symbolism behind the customs and traditions of Christmas which we now observe. Teach them what it is they truly represent."


Santa reached into his bag and pulled out a tiny Christmas tree and set it on my mantle. "Teach them about the Christmas tree. Green is the second color of Christmas. The stately evergreen, with its unchanging color, represents the hope of eternal life in Jesus. Its needles point heavenward as a reminder that mankind's thoughts should turn heavenward as well."
Santa reached into his bag again and pulled out a shiny star and placed it at the top of the small tree. "The star was the heavenly sign of promise. God promised a Savior for the world and the star was the sign of the fulfillment of that promise on the night that Jesus Christ was born. Teach the children that God always fulfills His promises, and that wise men still seek Him."
"Red," said Santa, "is the first color of Christmas." "He pulled forth a red ornament for the tiny tree. Red is deep, intense, vivid. It is the color of the life-giving blood that flows through our veins. It is the symbol of God's greatest gift. Teach the children that Christ gave his life and shed his blood for them that they might have eternal life. When they see the color red, it should remind them of that most wonderful gift."
Santa found a silver bell in his pack and placed it on the tree. "Just as lost sheep are guided to safety by the sound of the bell, it continues to ring today for all to be guided to the fold. Teach the children to follow the true Shepherd, who gave His life for the sheep."

Santa placed a candle on the mantle and lit it. The soft glow from its one tiny flame brightened the room. "The glow of the candle represents how people can show their thanks for the gift of God's son that Christmas Eve long ago. Teach the children to follow in Christ's foot steps...to go about doing good. Teach them to let their light so shine before people that all may see it and glorify God. This is what is symbolized when the twinkle lights shine on the tree like hundreds of bright, shining candles, each of them representing one of God's precious children, their light shining for all to see."
Again Santa reached into his bag and this time he brought forth a tiny red and white striped cane. As he hung it on the tree he spoke softly. "The candy cane is a stick of hard white candy. White to symbolize the virgin birth and sinless nature of Jesus, and hard to symbolize the Solid Rock the foundation of the church, and the firmness of God's promises. The candy cane is in the form of a "J" to represent the precious name of Jesus, who came to earth. It also represents the Good Shepherd's crook, which He uses to reach down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like all sheep, have gone astray. The original candy cane had three small red stripes, which are the stripes of the scourging Jesus received by which we are healed, and a large red stripe that represents the shed blood of Jesus, so that we can have the promise of eternal life.
"Teach these things to the children."
Santa brought out a beautiful wreath made of fresh, fragrant greenery tied with a bright red bow. "The bow reminds us of the bond of perfection, which is . The wreath embodies all the good things about Christmas for those with eyes to see and hearts to understand. It contains the colors of red and green and the heaven-turned needles of the evergreen. The bow tells the story of good will towards all and its color reminds us of Christ's sacrifice. Even its very shape is symbolic, representing eternity and the eternal nature of Christ's . It is a circle, without beginning and without end. These are the things you must teach the children."

I asked, "But where does that leave you, Santa?"
The tears gone now from his eyes, a smile broke over Santa's face. "Why you, my dear," he laughed, "I'm only a symbol myself. I represent the spirit of family and the joy of giving and receiving. If the children are taught these other things, there is no danger that I'll ever be forgotten."
"I think I'm beginning to understand."

"That's why I came," said Santa. "You're an adult. If you don't teach the children these things, then who will?"

---Author Unknown


Friday, December 21, 2012

BOOK SIGNING AT LATTERDAY COTTAGE IN MESA, AZ

Saturday, Dec 15 I decided to go to Mesa for a book signing at The Latterday Cottage. Authors in attendance were:
Kathy Atwood
Her book Maybe its a Zebra was really cute, it made me wish I had someone the right age to give it too.
Carolyn Hanchett author of The Blog and The Lost Gift
Betsy Love author of Identity and Soulfire.
I always have fun at book signings. I look forward to more next year.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

TOLLESON WARD CHRISTMAS PARTY 2012

On Dec 8 we had our annual Tolleson Ward Christmas Party. We started the night with a Mexican dinner, and desserts of all kinds. The entertainment was by each auxiliary of the Ward.
I didn't get pictures of the Relief Society Skit, because I was in it.We did an abbreviated version of Santa Whispered, Teach the Children.
We were followed by the Young Men. I don't remember what they sang.
 The Young Women sang Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

The Primary did the ABC's of Christmas and sang Away in a Manger.
  video
 The Elders Quorum did a game, where the participants had to put a cookie on their forehead and had to get it to their mouths without using their hands.
The Bishopric sang O Come All Ye Thankful

After the program ended we had a very special visitor.
It was a fun evening.
 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

NOVEMBER BIRTHDAYS

The Saturday after Thanksgiving we gathered again to celebrate November Birthdays. We had 5 of our 9 birthday people. 4 of Tom and Carla's kids had birthdays, but they didn't attend.
The gift table this month overflowed to the piano bench. 
Lyndi was anxious for all the Happy Birthdays to be sung, she had her eye on a chocolate cupcake. 
Trevor is 7
Jasmine is 18
Kelsey is 19
Jared is 23
Jake is 23
After the singing and eating of cupcakes or pie and ice cream we visited.
Took turns holding Baby Malie, who was a good sport about being passed around.
Some of the kids chose to play a few rounds of Pounce.
And watching the antics of our newest toddler Amelia.
 
HAPPY BIRTHDAY EVERYONE!!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

THANKSGIVING DINNER

On Thanksgiving afternoon we gathered at Aunt Karen and Uncle Max' home for Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone brought something to contribute to the meal and it was a real feast.
And we had pies of all kinds
There was plenty of eating 
And visiting
And playing with the babies
And of course finding somewhere comfortable to relax for a while.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!