December 31, 2008

Irish Blessing for the New Year

"May love and laughter light your days,

and warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours,

wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world

with joy that long endures.

May all life's passing seasons

bring the best to you and yours!"

December 28, 2008

Happy Hanukkah!

Tonight marks the final night of the Hanukkah celebration. Hanukkah or Chanukah, is also known as The Festival of Lights. It is a celebration of victory over oppression and the miracle of one nights worth of oil lasting for eight. It is a special time of joy and beautiful traditions that are passed from generation to generation.

The message and significance of The Festival of Lights is one which we can all celebrate. Victory over oppression..... The right to worship as we please ...... Miracles and new beginnings in the midst of loss.

Blessings to all my dear friends who will be lighting that final candle this evening, and blessings to all who hold the message of Hanukkah in their hearts.


December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas - Peace on Earth!

"I heard the bells on Christmas Day

Their old familiar carols play,

And wild and sweet the words repeat

Of Peace on Earth, good will to men!"

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

December 22, 2008

Surprise! TerBear Loves Bears

I love bears, so it seemed very fitting when many years ago a sweet girl named Casey nicknamed me TerBear. She and her twin brother Keith lived down the street as they were growing up. They played with my children, Sara & Michael, and quickly became part of our family. I have so many fun memories of them. They are 27 now and no longer live a hop, skip, and jump away. Although they have moved on, they're always near in thought. 

I came across this cute bear transfer in my stash of patterns. There are seven bears in all. There's one chore for each day of the week. This pattern is Mend Day. When I am finished, you will see stitching on the little patches. I'm not quite sure what this little project is for, but not to worry.... all bears find good homes at TerBear's house. ;-)

December 19, 2008

"I'll be found in You"

I have been a spiritual person for as long as I can remember. As I was growing up my parents and grandparents encouraged me to believe in something far greater than myself. It was never forced upon me, it was modeled. I try to follow that example and stay true to my beliefs and treat others with love and respect. 

There have been many dark times throughout the years. During those trying times, my faith has been shaken, but I never stopped loving God. I feel God's Divine Spirit in me.... and all around me. From the whisper of the breeze to the warm embrace of another. I believe that there is a spark of that Divine Spirit within each of us. And through that Spirit, we are connected to one another.

This past week has been one of personal sadness and loss. It has been a time of wondering why special people leave the earth far too soon. Why life unfolds the way it does. I realize that those answers are not to be known. At least not now.

I believe in coincidences but I think they are often "Godincidences." So many times I have been led to exactly what or who I needed at that very moment. Yesterday was one of those times. The deaths of two sweet acquaintances this week broke my heart. I was sitting at my computer attempting to find something to keep my mind off the sadness when I decided to focus on a new blog template. While at a particular site, a Godincidence occurred. The song link (that I have shared above) popped up. I cried as I listened, acknowledging the timing of this completely unrelated "find." I cried as the lyrics spoke to my heart. "When the world has fallen out from under me, I'll be found in you, still standing...... You make all things new." Just the reminder that my soul longed to hear.

I was so touched by the use of people of all races and ages in the video. It gave me a strong visual of my belief that we truly are all connected. How blessed we are to have a God who never leaves us and a world of people to share that love with.

* Shadowfeet sung by Brooke Fraser

December 14, 2008

Carrying on a Tradition

Last Sunday, my little buddy (striking a silly pose) and I had a blast making gingerbread cookies. Unfortunately my camera ran out of batteries before I could take any pictures of our creations. The Santa cookies are from another batch the following afternoon. Believe me, Issac's cookies were much more original and better looking! We had bears, angels, stars, lollipops with sprinkles, and of course ..... a few gingerbread men. Sara came in and made some cookies as well. All three of us ended up dusted in flour. It looked like it was snowing inside. Ahhh..... just like old times. I remember her and Michael baking with me when they were Issac's age. It's fun to share those family traditions. I have wonderful memories of baking with my grandmother, who fortunately is still with us at 92. She was so patient as we (my brother, sister, and I) played in the flour and rolled out our miniature pie crust creations loaded with cinnamon and sugar. :-)

Although I never baked with my great-grandmother (my Grossmutter) I watched her many times. She was a wonderful cook. I remember how fascinated I was watching her drop and cut the Spaetzle into the boiling broth. Watching the process was certainly fun, but eating the Spaetzle was even better. Being the mother to 7 children, she spent many hours cooking and baking! She gathered her own eggs and baked her own bread. She was known for her fresh Elderberry pies and German spice cookies. The rolling pin that Issac is holding was hers. If it could talk, oh the wonderful stories it would tell. Hundreds of pie crusts and rolled cookies were lovingly made by this beautiful woman. My Grossmutter is no longer here in body, but she is with me in spirit. It is my hope that Issac will have fond memories of his times laughing and baking with his Grammy.