I'm counting down for a few special things right now. First, my birthday is this weekend and I'm counting down for our trip to Las Vegas to see Tim McGraw & Faith Hill in concert there. I've never been to Vegas (and I never really had it on my bucket list to see) but I'm a huge country fan and I love Tim McGraw. This will be my 4th time seeing him in concert. My family is coming with me so it will be a great, fun weekend for us all.
I'm counting down to Christmas and events that celebrate it. I'll be baking next week, wrapping gifts, preparing for the Christmas Eve service (I play in a handbell group), and preparing for more special family time.
I'm counting down with the weekly Hodgepodge too. It's that time again, so here are the questions and my answers. Joyce, our wonderful leader, loves to hike, and from time to time she posts pictures from her outings through the New Jersey woods. Yes, NJ has woods! And lakes and mountains! You just have to get away from the Turnpike and go north and west.
1. When did you last take a walk in the woods? A stroll on the beach? A drive going nowhere in particular in the car?
I can't remember when I hiked through the woods. I enjoy the woods - as long as I don't have to camp in them. The stroll on the beach? That's an easier answer since I live at the beach! Just a week or so ago. And driving without purpose? I think the days of the "Sunday drive" are over due to the price of gas and the fact that we all spend so much time in the car anyway.
2. Are you sending Christmas cards this year? About how many do you send? Photo card or something more traditional? How do you display the cards you receive?
Yes, I will be sending Christmas cards out soon. I have started addressing them, and have bought stamps, etc. but I'm waiting until our return from Vegas in hopes I can get a great family picture while there. In the past I have sent traditional cards, and have included a "family update letter". I have sent pictures in the past too. I enjoy receiving cards from friends who send along letters and pictures - I love to see & read about their past year. So, I try to do the same. It's a bit different now since Facebook has kept me in touch with some friends all the time. But there are still those out there that I only hear from once a year at Christmastime and I really enjoy receiving their cards. Displaying cards? I do not display them, but I keep a basket by the kitchen table and collect the cards there. After Christmas when everything is quiet again I go through the basket and enjoy the cards a second time!
3. What's a word you've heard too much of in the past week?
Tough question. I can't immediately think of one annoying word! Perhaps "snow"...but only on the news. I do NOT like snow AT ALL and am happy to now live in an area that really never gets any. But I admit when I hear that word I still get a chill up my spine.
4. December 13th is National Cocoa Day - are you a fan? Plain or flavored? Marshmallows or no marshmallows?
Yes, I like cocoa...but I never think about making some for myself. It's a nice winter drink when the word I mentioned in the question above is happening. If I have cocoa I prefer no flavoring besides chocolate - and a few marshmallows are nice.
5. What is something you do to help alleviate the hectic pace of the Christmas season?
What I "try" to do is take it a day at time, and realize I am not good at everything associated with the season. I'll bake a little but I'm not a big baker, and I will stay out of the stores as best I can. I love the music so I concentrate on it, and I attend my church's Advent services and activities to keep centered on the CHRIST in Christmas.
6. Besides jewelry, what's a favorite sparkly - glittery item in your home or closet?
I do not consider myself a "bling bling" type of person. I don't wear flashy, sparkly clothing. So, at this time of year my favorite sparkly thing is the Christmas tree. At other times? I keep a tree lit with white lights year-round in my Carolina room. Guess what? I have lived here over 6 years and have never unplugged it - and it's still lit and pretty!
7. Share a favorite line or two from any Christmas carol.
Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me. (Ok, it's not really a Christmas song but I love it.)
8. My random thought.
Thinking back to question 5, I count my blessings every day and thank God for my life and my family... and yes, the glitter and glitz is fun at this time of the year, but it's important to remember that it all started in a humble, dirty little animal stable in Bethlehem.