A Modern-Day Proverbs 31 Woman

10: A wife of noble character, who can find? She is worth far more than rubies–so buy her diamonds.

11: Her husband knows that she has everything under control and he has nothing to complain about.

12: She is the source of the goodness in his life–not the harm.

13: She selects denim and cotton-poly blends from the discount rack and works eagerly with her hands to remove the price stickers so her children will not know that their trendy clothes were bought on clearance.

14: She shops at Target and WalMart and occasionally goes all the way across town to Aldi’s in order to get the best value for her money.

15: She is up before the sun, pouring cereal and packing lunches.

16: She considers an old dresser at a yard sale and buys it, and with the money she saved on her grocery bill, she is able to buy paint and new knobs for the dresser.

17: She sets about her work vigorously; she can carry two loads of laundry and a child without breaking a sweat.

18: She sells the dresser on eBay and stays up late waiting to see how much profit she’s made.

19: She replaces missing buttons and mends holes in everyone’s clothing.

20: She donates to the food bank and gives blood regularly.

21: When it snows, she has no fear for her household–it’s too bad if they don’t like the bright red hats and scarves; at least they’ll be warm.

22: She makes the beds and manages to pull together matching outfits for herself.

23: Her husband goes off to work, where he sits with the other businessmen.

24: She chooses something she’s good at and figures out how to make money by doing it.

25: Outwardly, she is clothed with strength and dignity, even if she’s missing an under-wire and she had to grab a longer skirt to hide the huge hole in her pantyhose. She can laugh at the days to come because all the kids’ science projects are done, and last year’s Halloween costume will be adequate for the school play.

26: She speaks with wisdom, and consistent instruction is on her tongue.

27: She pays the bills and makes sure everyone gets to the right swimming lessons on the right day. She does not eat the bread of idleness, because she is on Atkins.

28: Her children yell, “Thanks, Mom” as they grab their lunch and run out the door. Her husband also says,

29: “Thanks, Babe. You’re the best.”

30: Charm only gets you so far, and beauty is temporary, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.

31: Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her respect wherever she goes.

Adapted from Faith Wire

Christmas Service

Our experiment on how we “do” Christmas was a success. We went to Christmas Eve service at church, then came home and opened presents. (Note to self: do present opening earlier in the day so youngest child will not tire out too quickly).

On Christmas day we did the stockings and then made and ate the birthday coffee cake. (Another note to self: make the dough the night before so we don’t tide ourselves over and fill up with cereal and stale popcorn.) It was a really good coffee cake, especially being the first one I’ve ever attempted.

Jesus’ birthday cake R insisted on all the candles.

After resting Du and R made cookies. We then delivered the reindeer cupcakes (see previous post) to her friends and went to visit the patients and staff at the VA. Upon coming home we rested more and I made dinner. This big dinner was planned for Christmas Eve, but alas, I still have not learned to pull out that ham in time to let it thaw before cooking. I was smart enough to buy a precooked ham though, so the cooking of the big meal wasn’t stressful.

It was nice, no stress on Christmas Day. We could focus on Jesus’ birth and share a little of what we have (or what we could make) with others. I believe we’ll be “doing” Christmas this way again.

Our Dancing Ballerina & Christmas on Christmas Eve?

On Sunday Reagan went with her grandparents to see the Springfield Ballet’s performance of The Nutcracker. She was enthralled. As if we didn’t have a dancer before she has now become a prancing, twirling, toe pointing not-so-little-girl. Nothing was done this evening without a ballerina twist on it.

We made Rudolph cupcakes and will deliver those to neighborhood friends tomorrow. I kept having to remind her that we don’t clean our fingers by licking them when we’re making food for other people. We’re no longer sick…it shouldn’t be a problem…cough, cough…

We’re contemplating rearranging the way we “do” Christmas. Christmas is about celebrating the birth of Jesus. Nothing should take away from that. I’m worried that the importance of presents might be doing just that. We’re thinking we may open presents and have Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve. We can still do stockings on Christmas morning (no, we don’t do Santa–and we’re not weird because we don’t do Santa). We’ll  have Jesus’ birthday coffee cake for breakfast. What better way to start a day then by celebrating a birthday with cake! After that I’d like us to go visit VA patients or patients in the regular hospital. Then we can come home and eat leftovers from the Christmas Eve dinner. That seems like a much better way to celebrate the birth of God as He came to earth to be a man to live like we live and struggle with things that we struggle with…and managed to care about people each and everyday throughout the living and struggling.

NOW, if only my ham will thaw out quickly enough to eat it today instead of tomorrow…

Pay it forward

I had a pay it forward experience tonight. I took Reagan and one of her friends to see Enchanted. We’re standing in this insanely long line that extends nearly to the end of the parking lot. The girls are jumping around to stay warm and I’m thinking that might not be a bad idea, except I’m over 30 and it might look like I’m crazy.

 I vaguely remember that this theater does not take credit cards. (As an aside, I never carry cash. Who uses that anymore? And why would a theater–who is clearly out to suck you dry with the prices of their tickets and junk food — not accept credit cards? Pay the 3% fee and take my card!) I ask the family in front of us and they confirm my fear. They offer to give me cash if I can write them a check. I don’t carry checks either (we got our checks in 2003 with our Virginia address and still haven’t come close to using them all).

I’ve decided to stay in line though hoping there’s an ATM inside the building. This would make great sense seeing that people like me would gladly withdraw 20s with abandon and happily pay huge service fees–just let me buy your tickets and huge buckets of buttery popcorn, candy and coke! If there’s not an ATM then we’ll just go to Blockbuster, where they do take credit cards, and rent…it’ll be cheaper anyway.

We make it inside and are thawing out, still waiting in line. The family in front of us asks about the ATM. The theater not only doesn’t take credit cards but are intent to reject outright people like me. How could they not have an ATM? The father in the family turns around and hands me a $20 bill. I’m flabbergasted. He’s clearly taken by how sweet and precious the two girls with me are. They can’t be rejected with no movie at this stage. I tried to hand him the little cash I did have (which came from R’s friend’s mother or else I would have had none) but he wouldn’t take it. A true selfless gift.

I almost started crying. There was no need for this family to continue to converse with us past the initial “does this place take credit cards?” But they offered to pay our way and not even ask for change in return. I said “God bless you” after the dad told me “Merry Christmas.”

It may be silly feeling so grateful to have someone grant us access into a movie theater, especially when I have the money to get in, just not in a format this theater accepts. Maybe humbling is a better word than silly. It did make me want to run out at the earliest convenience and PAY IT FORWARD to someone else.
So, I will be looking for the soonest oportunity to pass on this selfless act of generosity…even if it’s for something as silly as a movie ticket.

Let’s get this party started

Oh what a bad blogger I am! I created this blog so long ago I forgot about it. Recently I’ve been wishing I could keep my family/friends a little bit more up to date with what goes on around here. I pulled this blog up and am laughing at how long it’s been. At first I looked at the dates below and saw January. I thought, “oh wow, it’s been almost a year since I’ve posted.” Then I took another look…at the YEAR…2006!!! It’s been almost TWO YEARS since I’ve posted. In one of the posts below I mention at how bad of a procrastinator I am. Well, this proves it doesn’t it?

We’ll see if attempt #2 succeeds.