Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thankful Thursday - December 30

Thankful Thursday is hosted this month by Iris.

This has been an interesting week. Our snow has nearly melted from the warmer weather - I love not having snow, but upper Michigan economy depends upon it. No snow = no snowmobiles = no tourism. I swear half the town heads south every winter, so it is almost lonely here. We do have a casino within walking distance from my house. I loathe the thing and am praying for the day the Lord closes it. I expect I'll be praying for a long time, but I won't give up hope. Crime is not the sort of company for which I'm looking.

Christmas was interesting as well. Instead of staying home as we normally do, we went one state south to visit both sides of the family - all in two days! It was a whirlwind trip. While we were happy to see our families, we were not happy to drive so far down and then back in a short period of time. Amanda ate nothing but candy and was sick by the time I put her into her own bed. She now has a nasty cold that is lingering.

We opened our presents the eve before Christmas Eve. That was a little weird since we had always done so on Christmas morning. We had very little to spend this year and I think the children were a little dismayed to see what a difference that made in the amount and quality of gifts received. To that I say, "Too bad!" Christmas is truly about receiving one gift only: that of the Christ, the Savior of the world. The gift we are to share is found in Him - the good news that eternity with Him is received by faith. All other gifts pale in comparison.

We gave our oldest son a handmade quilt (the nicest gift by far), crafted from his old t-shirts - some from his police academy, some from places he's worked, and even a couple from the Big Ticket Festival where he volunteered as security help. We told him this a combination Christmas/graduation gift. It's something special that he plans to keep forever. My friend, Jenn, from Sunshine Autumn Quilts handmade the quilt. If you like this quilt, you can order  a personalized one for yourself. They can be as small or as large as you like. Ask her about pricing on the different sizes.

 Above: The blanket I crocheted for Ryan.

(above photo courtesy of Sunshine of Autumn Quilts)

 Above: Josh's quilt.

Above: I got Jeff a large print NKJV Bible.

This year, looking back, I see tough times and I see good times. I've seen friends who've given up on their marriages. I've seen other friends tough it out with the Lord's help. I've seen struggles with finances and I've seen easier times.

Life is hard. God never promised that it would be easy. He only promised to carry our burdens as we take up His. "For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:30 (NIV)

May you all have a blessed New Year.


Karen said...

The quilt for your son was a great idea. He will always treasure it! Happy New Year and God bless you.

Alicia said... awesome to receive those quilts! I wish I could do something like that!!!

My husband likes the big print too for his bible! Much easier to read!

Joshlin said...

The quilts are beautiful. I happen to have been given a quilt also. I must say that it is the best gift I have had in a long time. My son has been given a few and has one I crocheted also. He loves them and will have them for a long long time. (He is only 4 year old now.)

I agree that this year has been a long hard one, but the Lord has been standing along side us!

Dena E's Blog said...

Wow,, beautiful crocheting Sweetie!!
I miss crocheting sometimes, more so in the winter..My Kenny loves his lg print Bible alos.. May it truly bless your husband... And you Sweet lady are a Precious Sister to me in Christ...LOVE your post and, its such a JOY to my heart that God has blessed me with such special ladies like you, visiting my blogs...May God continue to bless you in this New Year as you call on Him~~~Hugs Dena

Joan said...

Giving the quilt is a wonderful idea - something to treasure. I so agree - Christmas is not about the gifts, but about the One Gift.

Blessings and joy to you in the New Year.

Connie Jean said...

Great job on the quilts! And my hubby is going to require that same sort of Bible. He's now using glasses and if he doesn't have them on, he has to hold everything out at arm's length to read. Poor guy.

Amen to the last part. God does not promise us smooth and easy days but He does promise to walk with us and carry us when He needs to. We can't give up. Not in our marriages, our faith, our friendships... we have to just keep trekking on. And God is faithful; He'll be there every step of the way! Happy New Year

More Than Conquerors said...

Hi Rita,

Thanks for stopping by my blog and your lovely words of encouragements! It's so good to hear from you.

Your handmade quilt is so lovely. Such a precious gift to your son. Truly though life is hard at times and God never promised that it would be easy, His promises to be with us and see us through comforts and strengthens our heart. I wish you and family a very blessed new year and may you continue to know God's love, peace and lovingkindness in this new year.

Warm regards,