Saturday, December 31
As 2011 draws rapidly to a close, I find myself thinking about this past year at Imparting Grace. I can scarcely contain my gratitude to have been part of the blogging community this year! What joy I've derived from friendships with the wonderful people who are part of this blog--those who drop by occasionally, those who visit often, and those who read every post. I am reminded of the words of Alfred, Lord Tennyson: "I am a part of all that I have met." Who would have ever believed that so many of us could meet in the blogosphere? What a blessing!
If you're interested in strolling down Memory Lane with me, here are a few of my favorite posts of the year.
Thoughts from a Blogging Mother
This Week in History
Long Days, Short Years
Lessons from a Fire Hydrant
My Inner Martha
To you, my blogging friends:
"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you" (Philippians 1:3).
**What were some of your favorite moments in 2011?
Wednesday, December 28
As this year draws to a close, I find myself grateful that the calendar is about to turn. My biggest memories from this year will definitely be my husband's open-heart surgery in April and his subsequent re-hospitalization in May, capped off by my son's emergency surgery in November. Whew! We're thankful that all of us are healthy here at the end of the year!
As I looked back over my posts for the year, though, I remembered that I did manage to complete some fun projects. Here are a few of my favorites:
What about you? Was 2011 a year of big accomplishments for you? What was your favorite project? I'd love to know!
Monday, December 26
Sunday, December 18
Friday, December 16
Now that winter's here, my skin care favorites are even more important than they are in summertime. I swear by two products, both very affordable and both made by Olay:
Tuesday, December 13
"I'm no Martha," we say, "but look what I made!" Or, if we really want to compliment someone, we'll exclaim, "You're a regular Martha!" or "Martha would be proud!"
In the midst of all my efforts as a wannabe Martha, though, I was reminded of another Martha--the Martha who must certainly have been a homemaker par excellence, and a wonderful, faithful woman into the bargain. Martha of Bethany, friend of Jesus, busied herself and bustled around to make her home welcoming to Jesus. What a great woman! Her sister Mary, on the other hand, seems to have languished a bit when it came to homemaking, preferring to sit and listen to Jesus talk and leave the lion's share of the work to Martha.
Truth be told, I've always felt a lot of sympathy for Martha.
And I think Jesus probably felt a good bit of sympathy for Martha, too. Martha must have felt awfully comfortable with Jesus to be able to voice her concerns to him. Luke 10 tells us that Martha said, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work all by myself? Tell her to help me!"
She was right, wasn't she? There was work to be done. Jesus needed a meal, and that meal wasn't going to prepare itself. Many hands make light work, Mary. Chop chop.
Jesus's answer is very tender, but it gets right to the root of the problem. "Martha, Martha," he says, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken from her."
Quite frankly, I want to be a Martha. I want to have cool projects to blog about. I want people to ooh and ahh over my creations.
Let's be honest: Mary doesn't produce page views. She doesn't get retweeted. Her hanging out with Jesus doesn't produce pictures that will be pinned to Pinterest.
Yet Mary is the one who has chosen the better part. Even at a busy time, she chooses to spend time with Jesus, and the Lord of Lords says that she has her priorities straight.
And so, this Christmas season, while I really want to be a Martha, I'm going to try to be more of a Mary. Maybe, just maybe, I need a little less Christmas--
Monday, December 12
Sunday, December 11
The city hums. The merchants are unaware that God has visited their planet. The innkeeper would never believe that he has just sent God into the cold. And the people would scoff at anyone who told them the Messiah lay in the arms of a teenager on the outskirts of their village. They were all too busy to consider the possibility. Those who missed His Majesty's arrival that night missed it not because of evil acts or malice; no, they missed it because they simply weren't looking.
Special note: **My friend and kindred spirit Kristin from Kristin's Veranda designed this button for the party. Thank you, Kristin!**
Friday, December 9
Last is the stairwell, which leads down to the terrace level. Sorry about the glare from that light--that's my DIY wall clock you see in the background.
I decorate it simply with a lighted garland accented with some rusty snowmen and red and green houndstooth bows.
Christmas in our kitchen will soon involve the making of many pounds of fudge--I wish I could have you stop by and sample a piece. What's cooking in your kitchen?
**I'm joining the "Christmas in the Kitchen" Party
with Vanessa and Heather from At the Picket Fence.**