Sunday, February 23, 2014

We Are A Bookish Family

We are a bookish family, yes we are. And I love the big book order that comes right before Christmas ... all ready to be wrapped and put under our tree.

The last few years, I have asked everyone what book they wanted for Christmas. Getting just the right one is always fun. This year, my dad send me money to do his shopping ... so I got to get two books for everyone. (double the joy) 

But before I tell you the books I ordered, let me show you the books I received for Christmas.

lucky me
Here are the yummy books I got to give away for Christmas ~

Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem and Other Things That Happened, by Allie Brosh (awesome title)
 
Walking with God Through Pain and Suffering by Timothy Keller

Betsey Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace

The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten

The World of Downton Abbey by Jessica Fellows

Knock Knock Who's There: My First Book of Knock Knock Jokes by Tad Hill

Mad Hungry by Lucinda Scala Quinn

Judges for You by Timothy Keller

Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon

Well, we are a well rounded bunch, yes?

If you know our family, you can probably guess the recipient of each book. (And the knock knock joke book was for our buddy, Cole, not Dave. But they had fun reading it together.)

And, I saved the best book for last. My first book purchase for our grandaughter.to.be, due in 19 days.

  


A Baby's Blessing by Welleran Poltarnees ~ This book is full of beautiful pictures and wonderful blessings. A few of our favorites:
     
     *let this baby be welcomed by many, loved by 
       many and known by a myriad of private and
       gentle names

     *let this child be held and warmed and made
      secure in this strange new world

     *let all those who share in this babies growing
      learn from its' laughter and joy.

We read this book of prayers aloud at Jenny's baby shower. Such sweetness.

Well, there you have it ... our Christmas books. Did you get any great books for Christmas?

p.s. A little parental warning ~ It our experience that when you teach your kids to love books, they will grow up and move to third floor apartments with no elevators. More than one time, too. There will be stacks and stack of books to carry up those many long flights of stairs. Thought you would want to know. 






 

Friday, February 14, 2014

My Favorite Sugar Cookie Recipe and a Cute Belly

Today, I am baking my favorite sugar cookies for Jenny's baby shower tomorrow. Pink hearts for a grand baby. Yup, a girl.

two cute girls
Hmm ... I may need to rename this recipe.

Grand baby Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

add to creamed mixture:

2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Refrigerate dough. Roll 1/8" thick and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 325 degrees for 7-8 minutes. Do not brown the cookies.

Frosting ~ 3 tablespoons butter, 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1-2 tablespoons milk, pink food coloring.

This recipe is from my friend, Connie, "the cookie lady." You will enjoy this story of how Connie discovered her ministry of cookie baking.

And Happy Valentine's Day, dear friends. Wish I could share a cookie with you.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Day I Spoke at Lucy's Memorial ... Before She Died

Lucy and I became friends ... right from the get go. She was in her mid 80's and I my early 50's. Lucy joined a small group that I was leading. (my favorite kind, by the way, as we also had women in their 20's, 30's and 40's)


"
my friend, Lucy

Lucy came every week

           *dressed to the nines
       
           *with her Bible Study complete

           *and, a wonderfully sweet spirit, to boot.

Whenever I asked her how she was feeling  (even on days she was not feeling that well) she always said, "Sorry, I do not give organ recitals," and then she would ask about my week.

One afternoon, I got a call from Lucy, telling me that her lungs were failing and she did not have long to live. She asked me if I would speak at her funeral ... which she called her "graduation ceremony."

It would be my very sad joy to share about my friendship with this beautiful woman, whom we all loved so much. So I began to prepare my talk.

And then we decided to move to Seattle  and I hated calling Lucy to tell her my move date might precede her graduation. I had prepared my talk, and my dear friend, Kate, would deliver my little speech. 

I woke up early one morning with a Holy Spirit inspired idea ... go see Lucy one last time and deliver her graduation speech to her.

Now, I am not a person who can cry and talk at the same time, so Kate went with me. While she read my talk, Lucy and I held hands and cried through the whole speech. Then I prayed for her last days on earth and said goodbye.

It was beautiful. One of those "standing on holy ground" moments.

There is a sweet part in the novel, Fault in our Stars, where a bunch of high school students hold a funeral for their friend, before he dies. It reminded me of my time with Lucy.

May I suggest ... if you have a friend that is dying, plan a little "graduation party" and tell them what you will say at their funeral. It will mean so much to both of you.


 
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