Saturday, December 29, 2012

     Christmas is over, and soon we will be at the end of the year. The lead up to Christmas is so long, and then, bang, it's over. I went easy before Christmas, decorating a bit at a time, and I should have done the same when taking things down, but oh no, that would be too smart. I worked all day yesterday, and put all the decorations and the tree away, and yes, I feel it today.

There is not much that goes on here after Christmas, after the girls and families have come and presents have been opened. There is no celebration on New Years, and on my part there is just the anticipation of getting back into routine.

     Routine won't happen for a few days, I expect. There is a rather large snow storm heading our way, due to hit tonight. The local mall has already announced that it will be closed tomorrow, and I suspect that church will probably be cancelled, if we get the amount of snow that the weather people are calling for.

     I fear my little black cloud is visiting me again. Dawn says it does every Christmas, and I expect she may be right. It is probably because of, well, I guess I don't really know...if I did, I could fight it. Maybe I do know, but don't know how to avoid it.

     I do enjoy giving gifts to my family. That is the best part of Christmas. That and the Christmas services at the church, but somehow there always seems to be the darkness, even while I am practicing and doing my duties as organist. My daughters and granddaughters are my joy, but it seems time with them is so short. Of course they have their own lives and adventures to attend to.
Speaking of which, Heather and Rupert, of Ironwood, have 3 little lambs, born on Christmas day.

   I have done a bit of needle felting, and I should get started on a sympathy card, but I am just scuffling along in low gear. I tried keeping a journal for a few days, but that didn't work. At least when I write here, I do think first about how things will sound.....well most of the time....I wouldn't want to leave the impression that I am crazy or anything like that.

   Sadie and I wish you a Happy New Year, and blessings in the days to come.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve, and Sadie and I want to wish readers a very Merry Christmas, and all the blessings of the Season.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

A Journey

Come now, let us take a journey
Back in time, to a hillside of long ago.
You are there. 
Close your eyes.
You are a shepherd…..
Feel the rough bark as you lean back against a tree.
Your eyes are heavy, you want to sleep,
For all is quiet, even the lambs are sleeping.
See them there, snuggled close to their mothers for warmth,
For the night is chill and you gather your cloak
Closer around you. – Then—suddenly you are startled
From your drowsiness ----
The air is filled with wondrous music – are you dreaming?
No!  This is real, the sheep hear it too – they are looking toward heaven.
Can it be angel voices – yes – listen – hear the words-
“Fear not—for unto you is born a Savior, Christ the Lord.
In Bethlehem – Good Tidings – Great Joy – A Savior – A Savior…..

And without realizing it, you have risen, picked up your crook
And even though you are weary, aching from the long day,
You begin to walk, stumbling at first –
For your eyes are on the brightness of the heaven –
Your ears full of the joyful angel songs.
In amazement, you slowly wend your way down the winding path
You hear the other shepherds – they are coming too,
And the sheep that follow you, always, are coming too,
And you continue quickly to the place.
Your thoughts are puzzling – a child – yet a king –
A Savior – a Savior….
But how can it be…………born in a stable….. a rough, lowly stable…..
A Savior….. how can it be?
But there – in the sky – a star – more brilliant than you
Have ever seen – over the stable – in Bethlehem…..
A Savior……… a Savior.
And you come to the place where He is lying,
And you sense something wondrous is taking place here……….
Your heart pounds, you can hear it in your ears.
You must walk softly though you don’t know why…your pace slows………..
You can see the manger and those who are there.

Not yet ready to look upon this child, you hesitate,
Gather your cloak around you for you are shivering—
Yet it is not from the cold—it is something else –
Awe at what you see.
There, the father stands – hand gently resting on the woman’s shoulder,
His eyes full of love for the woman and the child.
You look then to the mother, sitting close to the child.
She looks at the tiny babe, her eyes too, are filled with love,
But you can see there too something else – almost – almost a sadness?
No…that can not be…this is a night of joy….and yet….And yet….?
Then, finally you look to the child,

And you are drawn closer and closer to the place where He lies.
You wipe your eyes, for tears have welled up unexpectedly…..
Something is happening to you—you are a bit fearful, and yet calm.
You are drawn closer, until at last you look upon the face
Of this boy child who shivers a little from the coldness of the night—
And you cannot look away.
You look into His eyes and somehow you know,
You know that you are in the presence of the King,
The God Man – a child in a lowly manger…..A Savior…………
And you know at that moment that you will never be the same.
For your life has been touched with an overwhelming love,
And a peace that you have never felt before.
A little lamb softly licks your hand, as if to show you
That this is really happening, and you kneel down beside the lamb,
And gently rub your hand over its soft, woolly head,
And you keep your eyes on the child, the King, the Savior.

You will leave the stable after a while and return to the hillside,
But you know that you will never want to take your eyes off the Savior.
You know that you will look to Him forever.
For unto you was born that day, your Savior, Christ the Lord.                           written December 1994

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Well, it finally happened.....snow, and lots of it. School was closed in the Annapolis Valley, and it's probably a good thing. I think the roads are rather dangerous, though I have not tested them personally. The ground was bare when I got up this morning, though it looked like it had been raining. About an hour later the snow started, and it hasn't stopped all day.

This was late morning

Snow wet and heavy

This scene is never the same
All of the pictures were snapped from inside the house, and it really was very grey, but beautiful. I had to cancel my appointment with the eye doctor, as I really am not up to driving on slippery roads. A new appointment was made for Friday am, so hopefully things will all be clear then.
                         Here are some faces of Christmas. I think I painted them last year.

Smile, it's Christmas

How close did you say Christmas was?

Hope I didn't forget anyone...

I made ol' St. Nick from clay several years ago.

And Sadie is not the least bit excited. She had just been out, and was melting the snowballs on her feet, with what was left of her body heat.
Hi Ho, Hi Ho, just look at all the snow............

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Beyond Sad

I am having a coffee break, before I put the lights on the tree. I have Christmas music playing softly in the background. Sadie and I are alone, and I am trying not to listen to anymore newscasts. It is enough to know that a tragedy occurred, and beautiful little children have lost their lives, others will be traumatized, and parents who are left with no answers cry tears that will flow like rivers. I am sure the broadcasters will be on this story for several days, asking why, seeking answers, showing pictures over and over again. I just cannot listen or watch anymore. I know that a most terrible thing has happened, and the sadness is beyond measure, and my prayers are lifted for the families involved, parents of children lost, and children so frightened who survived, and families of the adults who were killed, and Newtown itself, who somehow must make their way through this madness. It is beyond sad.

And then I begin to think of all the areas in this world of ours, where children's lives are taken because of war, or hunger or little or no health care. Each child's life is precious, as is every life, and yet, and yet......

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

'Twas the Night Before Christmas...

With apologies to Clement C. Moore.......

'Twas the night before Christmas
And all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring,
Except for a mouse -

Who came out of his hole
And went straight to his work.
He ate all the candy, he was a real jerk!

When out on the lawn I heard such a noise,
I jumped out of bed, and fell over the toys.
I looked out the window and what did I see -
The partridge had fallen out of the pear tree.

As I turned and tripped back across the floor,
I heard another sound, just outside my door.
I though I should look, but I was full of fright,
So I crept back to bed and pulled the covers up tight.

I thought I could sleep, but that wasn't to be,
'Cause the mouse was still crunching on the candy.

Then, I heard ol' Santa and all his reindeer,
Heard him shout "Merry Christmas" and "Happy New Year".
Then he yelled something else as he drew out of sight --
It sounded like, "I'm glad I only have to do this one night -
Rudolph, put that partridge back up in the tree,
And let's go home, I need a hot cup of tea!"

Monday, December 10, 2012 show.....

I know that winter doesn't really begin until December 21st, but usually, as we draw close to Christmas, the weather seems to be sensibly "winter". Today was not an example of snow sensibility. This morning I felt that I should get my little birds fed before the ..ahem...storm came. Out I went and filled the feeders, as a few flakes of snow began to fall. This was around 8am or so.
Next on the list was a short trip to the drug store for prescriptions, and as I left there a nice little coating of freezing rain was on the windshield, and snow pellets on the parking lot. I took my time coming back up the mountain, not wanting to challenge whatever was under the wheels.

Realizing that an error had been made in the prescription, I called the pharmacy and they said they would fix it up, meaning another trip down the mountain. I waited till mid afternoon, when I was sure that it was just raining. Off down the mountain I went again and pulled into the pharmacy parking lot, which was still covered with ice pellets.
Now, this evening the temperature is 11 or 12 C. Winter in Nova Scotia. Puddles in the driveway, and I'm waiting for the bathroom ceiling to start dripping again. (No the roof has not been fixed yet....but that is another story, for someday when I feel like a grouch again, or perhaps a big green grinch.

Our Sunday School held its little Christmas Concert yesterday morning. There are a lot of little ones and they impressed with their lamb ears, their shepherd costumes, their pretty dresses and all that goes with the telling of the Christmas story. It was excellent, as always, because there are no mistakes when the Sunday School puts on their performances. They are always good, no matter what happens, even though the teachers are always nervous before hand. I sit back now and smile and enjoy, having been one of the nervous teachers for about 20+ years.

In the afternoon, a friend, Pearle and I went to a concert put on by Lindsay's choir, the KCCC, which is the Kings Chorale Children's Chorus, and the Honor Choir, who teamed up to share their music. It was very well done, beautiful voices from young people who love to sing. The directors certainly know what they are doing and how to get the best effort from the young people. The Honor Choir will be singing in Prague next year. What a fantastic opportunity for this group., without which, life would be stagnent.  I can't imagine what my life would be like without music. Pretty sad, I would think.

I do not have any decorations up yet, so I had better start thinking about doing something. Lindsay mentioned it to me a few days ago, that perhaps she had better come and get me started. Hint, hint.
The decorations are in the attic, and I'm not quite ready to face it yet, as I cannot stand up straight in there. Perhaps when and if my roofers ever come to fix the roof, they could add a few feet to the attic space......naw.....that will never happen.....Perhaps Santa will land on the roof and go right through, then his elves will have to fix it, and my bathroom won't leak, and then I will be a happy little dreamer.

I'm getting a little carried away now, so I'd better come back to reality, before I do get carried away.
Hi ho, Hi the padded room I go........

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Dreary Day

     Well, we certainly go from one extreme to another weather-wise, here on the mountain. A few days ago, we had snow, and icy roads and frosted windows, and today it is warm, wet and windy. The grey clouds hang heavy and the day is very dark.

I couldn't see my bird friends at their feeder, but I could hear them. The window is now clear, and the feeders, dripping from rain showers.

Our church held a Christmas Luncheon for our Seniors in the community. It was well attended, and each person brought an item for the food bank. It is a great time for all these folks to have a good chat about what has been going on in each other's life since they last saw one another, have good laughs about past events, and generally enjoy a time of togetherness, with a great meal served up by the Church social committee. I've been a senior for a while, but I keep forgetting. Lindsay and a friend Leanne sang a couple of Christmas songs, for the entertainment. We can always count on these girls to sing, whether for something like this or in a service. It is so nice to have the young ones eager to do their part. Some of the youth went out in the afternoon, to gather food bank items. There is a challenge among area churches to see who can gather the most food for the food bank. There is a great need for the food bank here, as well as in other areas across our province.
This Wednesday will find me at the local residential home, to play for our WMS group, as we do some carolling and serve some goodies. The folks always enjoy our coming, and the singing of Christmas songs.

I haven't heard from the printers yet, and am getting a bit concerned about my cards. I'll be patient, (I am working on that this week) and give them a call if I haven't heard anything by mid-week.

Hurray! Our Bible Study group has finished the first five books of the Bible.  It has taken us quite a while, but it has been a real adventure, book by book, chapter by chapter. We are weary after tramping in the wilderness for forty years. In the new year we will begin our conquest of Canaan, with Joshua. 

Hope everyone has a good week, wherever you may be.