I sure missed posting last week, but, the extra time with the kids in an already crazy week was nice.
We kicked off our busiest week of the season with our first ever attendance to a live performance of Handle's Messiah on Sunday. Friend Nathan and his mom made the trip into town to join us (pictured at end of row of my kids)
Daily rehearsals to prepare for the weekend's performances were a lot of fun. Waiting was the hardest part!
We all had a bit of opening night jitters. Everything went well though and, with much prayer, our hearts hoped many found peace and Hope for this Christmas season through the message we were blessed to be a part of. (Love came down at Christmas ... Jesus is the reason for the Season!) ((In-text links are some songs we sang)) Some highlights:
|The Angles were my favorite (bottom) and a wonderful climax to the Story. Mary and Joseph's song, The Prayer, was beautiful. (Hubby had wing seats so pictures are fuzzy)|
Nathan was the first non-family member to stay in our new hospitality/guest house! He is a young man we met a few years ago working with Christian Youth in Action. He was in town this past week to do some recruiting for CYIA's summer 2016 outreach. I offered cookie baking his first day here and he chose sugar cookies so he and the kids had fun with cut-outs, frosting and sprinkles!
We also decorated the guest house Christmas tree with ornaments the kids have been given over the years. Nathan had fun helping since our oldest, Zach, couldn't be here, he took over Zach's ornaments for the day. Ashely, being a senior this year, got to put the angel on top of the tree. Yes, I teared up a bit as I took the picture!
You can watch for a Bible study series coming soon from Nathan which he wrote and I offered to share here on the blog in the new year. He is a very Holy Spirit inspired young man preparing to head to Bible College to become a youth pastor.
I couldn't help sharing this picture, taken when a friend stopped for a visit Friday with her brood which included a newborn baby (I got to hold!!!) and a toddler. Her toddler was playing with baby dolls in this high chair but when she walked away for a few minutes, our fluff-ball Aslan took over. He seriously put himself in this chair like that and he thinks it is his seat, though he is getting much to big for it. The kids thought the hat would make him cute, however, Santa gives toys, he doesn't take them!
This week will seem dull compared to last week's business! We are expecting a snowstorm any minute now... literally! If it hits with all the force predicted then we won't be doing both youth groups this week... which will devastate the kids since they missed a lot last week due to our involvement in the church production. Ashley has some last minute Christmas shopping to do for friends which I need to run her to tonight if weather permits. Youth groups Tuesday, Wednesday and then Friday is a Christmas party get-together for the Middle School youth group kids (Brooke will attend). I'm hoping to do my grocery shopping during the day Friday to beat the crowds so my menu for Friday/Saturday is hopeful!
Saturday evening my husband's boss graciously offered to take his department to see the new Star Wars movie. Each employee and their spouse. My husband is super excited though I must confess I am sort of Star Wars-ed out! He desperately wants me by his side though so I will go and we will be bringing Brenden since he absolutely can't wait to see it! Buying just one ticket is much more cost effective and we appreciate the generous gift his boss is providing for the rest.
Brooke and I are working on mug rugs for a few Christmas gifts. hopefully the studio stays warm enough to get them finished!
Menu for this week...
hubby: leftover Pork Fried Rice
me and kids: leftovers, Ham or Bologna sandwiches
Pork Steaks, Green Beans, Baked Yellow Squash
We have been trying to make healthy tweeks to our dinners. I switched fried Squash to baked and breaded it with bread crumbs and Parmesan and it was delicious (even the kids loved it!). I am still perfecting the process and can share more details when I get them done!
Chicken Pot Pie
I think I will use small Christmas tree cookie cutters to cut the vent holes!
Steak and Broccoli Stir Fry
I have a small amount of steak left over from a package I got on bargain and split for two meals. Stir Fry is always a great way to stretch small amounts of meat for a larger family!
Ground Turkey Sloppy Jo, Mac N Cheese and Potato Bake
Costco Chicken and Cheese Chimichangas
Burgers and Home Fries
What are you cooking this week?