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The Blessing of Memories...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hi..we just got home from shopping at Williston N.D and I think I literally shopped til I dropped.
At least I'm all finished with the shopping..now to finish the wrapping, do a bit more baking and cleaning and decorating and buy some last minute groceries..I'm set..woohoo!!

Today's blessing is the blessing of memories..that's a hard one for me since my daughter isn't taking to me. I have to make this a year of balance..balance the good memories with the sad...remembering my parents and brother who are no longer with us...and embracing the ones here and making new memories....Christmas conjures up so many memories..the sights, smells, tastes and love of years gone by...I love to bake..nothing says Christmas like the family favorites that I make every year. Some were my Grandma's, some my Mom's..add to that ones from sisters, neighbors, mother in law..new ones I've found long the way...they all have happy memories for me!! I also like to give most of it away so I don't eat it all...

Some memorable ones are my Mom's brown sugar shortbread, my grandma's swedish delights, my sister's chocolate shortbread and my other sister's homemade turtles, a dear friend who passed away gave me the recipe for toffee cornflakes, another friend who was my bridesmaid..shared her sister's chocolate fudge that I have been making "cow pie" fudge ever since...I could go on and on...

A lot of my Christmas decorations are very dear to me, too. I have my mother's nativity scene from my childhood, a lot of my mother's tree ornaments, the advent calendar and wreath I used when the kids were little..where does the time go? are they really 30, 28 and 25? I also have a large collection of Christmas books and magazines and of course music :)

Some of my memories of Christmas was the year my cousin came over and my sister, my cousin and I made dozens and dozens of homemade chocolates. Another memory was the beautiful gingerbread cookie church my mom made!! I wish I had a picture :) A crazy memory is of some elaborate painted sugar cookies my sister and I made and then didn't want our drunken father to eat them so we hid them under the bed and the dog ate them..sooo crazy :)

Well..not all my memories involve food, but it sure sounds like it!! lol....There's the presents and the trees and the sparkle tours and the church services..the bloopers with the kids and the family times and love we shared!!..and the chance every year to make new cherished Christmas memories...that will live on in our hearts forever..after all that's what Christmas is all about..taking the time to stop and really celebrate the reason for the season..no matter where you are or who you are with....

Have the Merriest Christmas ever!! emoticon


Thanks so much for dropping in for a chat and to share some Christmas memories!!
Keep on Sparkin'

emoticonLove Donna

"Children come and see Him slumber
in the manger soft with hay.
He, our blessed little Savior,
there was born for us today"
Polish carol

PS Thanks for the gift ideas for son's new girlfriend..I got her a pair of ski gloves, a matching hat, a fleecy blanket and a snowman t-shirt and bath set.. emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DUSTYGIRL25 12/17/2011 8:47AM

    You have such beautiful Christmas memories. I only wish your daughter would be a part of sharing stories of your family while growing up. These are memories that should be passed down. I'm wishing that soon she will realize how important it is to be with family.
And I do agree with you about baking. It is so much fun. I'd rather bake goodies than cooking a meal, however, I'm not planning on doing to much because then I'll end u
p eating it all. This time of the year calls for strong willpower. emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 12/16/2011 8:10PM

    Really enjoyed your Christmas memories -- and I'm with you about brown sugar shortbread!! Yeah!!

That mother daughter relationship is so difficult for so many . . . hope things warm up soon!

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MARITIMER3 12/16/2011 6:13PM

    Interesting, isn't it, how so many of our memories involve food... cooking it, sharing it, smelling it, eating it. Using family recipes, some made only once a year. Thanks for the reminders.

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BEATLETOT 12/16/2011 9:03AM

    Enjoyed reading about your memories...thanks for posting this!

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MADAMES 12/16/2011 2:22AM

    Wonderful Christmas thoughts! Thank you for sharing your insight about the season; I love reading your blogs.

:) Evelyn

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Today's Blessing of Christmas...Kindness..

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Hi..I need to write a quick blog and get to bed..we are going to Williston, ND tomorrow to finish up the shopping and as hubby puts it..get away from the zoo..haha

Today was lots of fun carolling at the nursing home..They loved their sox, too. Hard to believe such a simple thing can make over 20 people so happy..hope you all find ways to make this Christmas season special to you and others.

Today's Christmas blessing is kindness..wow..I like doing things for others and always try to be kind..there are soo many ways...I stopped and picked up my friend who was carolling with me..since she lives along the way to town..as a special treat I made us both travel mugs of apple spice herbal tea for the drive :) yumyum..hubby was gone to a birthday party and had to leave early this morning so I told him I'd do all the chores for him, which included watering the main herd out grazing...I chopped 6 holes (my arms are killing me) the first 3 had no water..frozen right to the ground already, the 4th and 5th ones were at the edge of a dugout and I thought I was finished but found another herd grazing near a different slough.so chopped the 6th one there..wow what a work out :) When I got home from town hubby was already home and working on the corral so I did night chores, too. I phoned my sister and my inlaws today, too. Lots of ways to show kindness..I bought a baby card for my niece and told a friend to forget about the money she thinks she owes me..if I wasn't so tired I'd send out some goodies and comments to all my spark buddies that have sent me goodies or left comments..but I need to be kind to me and get some sleep...

...So my dear Spark friends..thanks so much for dropping by and for all your comments and support...your kindness is always appreciated...keep on Sparkin' emoticon


emoticonLove Donna!!

ps...hubby had a fun time at the city..the card for his secretary who turned 60 read..remember when you were little and held up how many fingers old you were? Well now you just hold up one..haha

He shared this on being kind today..at the liquor store the clerk told him to have a nice day and he replied you too...she said he was the first customer that said that to her and it had been really busy...she gave him a bottle of rum...okay..it was the little airplane size..but still.. see it does pay to be kind :)

Have a great Christmas season and remember to be kind....to your friends, your family, strangers and of course..yourself... emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEATLETOT 12/15/2011 8:38AM

    This is a very sweet blog. =)

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SLFGOLF 12/15/2011 1:01AM

    I love this one. So many of my students really need something simple like a kind word or encouragement. We use the "fish philosophy" where one of steps is Make Their Day. A kind word or action can make all the difference in someone's life and can be such an easy thing to do.

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VICIOUS421 12/15/2011 12:48AM

    emoticon

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Another Blessing of Christmas..

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Hi..today's Blessing is the blessing of music..I love Christmas music...I start listening to Christmas music ridiculously early, usually October...every year I buy new Christmas music.. this year was a Johnny Reid cd. One of my favorites is Amy Grant that I bought a couple years ago...especially the songs Count my Blessings and I Need a Silent Night!! What are your favorite Christmas songs? Tomorrow I'm going carolling at the nursing home with my friend and I'm really looking forward to that :)

I went with hubby to check the herd and chop the water holes..then I did some more cleaning and decorating..I was feeling like I was getting ready for Christmas early until son called tonight and said he was coming for Christmas on the 22 and 23 with his new girlfriend that we haven't met yet and then they are going to her parents for the 24th and 25th, then off to Montana snow boarding. My oldest daughter and her boyfriend and 2 little girls are coming for Christmas on New Years since this is the Christmas for the girls to be at their Dads..The other daughter is still going through a rough time and refuses to talk to us :(...it will be a sad, blue Christmas..especially since we will now be alone on Christmas day...at least hubby and I will be together!!

I really have to get my act together to be ready earlier and also find something for the new girlfriend..?? I'm not going to let this stress me out...the stress of the funerals and the news that a close cousin and his wife have split up (they got married the year before us..in 76)

Time to take a deep breath and just carry on :)

On a brighter note one of my nieces had a baby boy this afternoon:)

Well, I better head to bed and get some rest for tomorrow...thanks for stopping by and keep on Sparkin'

Love Donna emoticon


emoticon 'Tis the season to be jolly, fa la la la la la la la la emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEATLETOT 12/14/2011 8:46AM

    I'm actually not a big fan of most Christmas music, but I do like Trans-Siberian Orchestra and The Beach Boys Christmas album...I LOVED listening to that one when I was a kid, and still do!

I think a cute winter-weather item like a scarf or a hat would be great for the girlfriend. That's a great idea!

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VICIOUS421 12/14/2011 1:12AM

    Take time to BREATH and a little time for yourself!!!!! Can't go wrong with a winter scarf or hat for the new girlfriend as they are going snowboarding. Sorry about the daughter that is not talking right now, hope things work out better soon!!!!!
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DUSTYGIRL25 12/14/2011 1:02AM

    Sounds like you are pretty on top of it. If you only need to get a gift for your Son's GF you are doing good.
I haven't even started yet beccause we are waiting for paydays. We've decided no using credit cards this year.
So sorry to hear that your daughter is still holding out on making up. Life is to short to ignore family.
My daughter is somewhat the same way, she's not mad or not speaking but she always spends Christmas with her hubbys family or her fathers family anyone but us.
That's ok. We'll enjoy Christmas anyway.
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MARITIMER3 12/14/2011 12:53AM

    Christmas seems to intensify everything, doesn't it? I hope that you like the new girlfriend, and that you and your husband enjoy Christmas "on your own". I'm sorry that your daughter isn't speaking to you; perhaps the holiday season might make her re-think things.

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BIGBADMOMMABEAR 12/13/2011 11:37PM

    I misread and thought YOU were going snowboarding! I thought you were very brave to do that!

I'm sorry to hear your daughter is sti going through a rough time.

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TORTILLAFLATS 12/13/2011 11:36PM

    I have the Christmas music playing all day long and enjoy every minute. The Holidays goes by so fast.!
Gail emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JMGLEN62 12/13/2011 11:29PM

    I love Christmas music as well. The Trans Siberian Orchestra is my favorite go to this time of year. Our children are 24 and 21 so I know it won't be long till they might not be with us on Christmas day. Wishing you and yours the best holiday season!

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The 12 Blessings of Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Hi..got home today from the second funeral in 5 days :( Todays was a sad one..a neighbor's 32 year old daughter passed away. I find it really hard to attend funerals since I always cry when I see someone else cry...so I feel quite wiped...

I did see lots of friends that we knew when we were in Weyburn today so spent way more time visiting than shopping :)

Yesterday we went up to daughter's ( a 3 1/2 hr drive) for the littlest granddaughter's birthday! She is 7 today :) The party was lots of fun..the girls were really excited. Then on the way home we stopped at my sister's for a visit and beer :) It was a very long day.

December is flying by and the Christmas preps are coming along fine..most of the gifts are bought, most of the baking is done, most of the house is decorated and I even got all the gifts for the seniors wrapped for Wednesday when my friend and I go caroling at the nursing home. We got them all Christmas sox (the men get wool sox) I made wrapping paper cones and then added tissue and a bow...28 packages...we missed last year and I'm looking forward to it :)

To follow my theme of Blessings I'm going to share a bit from a book I have byT.J.Mills called The Twelve Blessings of Christmas (yes..there is 12 days left until Christmas eve!!)

Today's Blessing is The Blessing of Warmth..I hope you feel the warmth of the season in your house, with your family and friends and in your heart...some ways to spread the warmth is with a warm cosy fire..we have our wood stove going..baking a batch or 2 of cookies to warm up your house and share with family and friends...sending warm Christmas greetings to family and friends, be it Christmas cards, e-mails, phone calls or even cheery greetings to people you run in to :) Other ways to warm up..a cup of hot cocoa, some tea or coffee...some hot oatmeal for breakfast or a nice bowl of soup for lunch...I hope each and every one of you can take the time and slow down and appreciate the WARMTH of the Christmas season :) You all bring me warmth with your friendship, inspiration and support :)

Thanks so much for dropping by...keep on Sparkin' emoticon

Love Donna


emoticon "Enjoy every warm minute and have a merry little Christmas!"
T.J.Mills

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEATLETOT 12/13/2011 9:47AM

    Thanks for posting this! I will focus on warmth today and this weekend!

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DUSTYGIRL25 12/13/2011 7:37AM

    So sorry to hear about the loss of your friends. This has to be the worst time of the year to be grieving. It's always going to be a tough time to get through.
It's very good that you have most of the hard stuff done now and hopefully can sit back and enjoy the Christmas holiday. I still have so much to do since we are waiting on payday. Thanks for sharing your story of blessings. The idea of sharing warmth sounds so wonderful.
emoticon emoticon

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SLFGOLF 12/13/2011 1:01AM

    My daughter and I cuddled up together to finish our Christmas cards last night. We had finished our Christmas shopping Saturday. Always a good feeling to get things accomplished and be back in the comforts of home.

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Home from funeral...heard more bad news....

Friday, December 09, 2011

Hi..we just got home from Regina where we did a bit of shopping and then attended our friend's sister's funeral. At the funeral we also heard of the passing of another man we knew how was the father of one of our son's classmates..so just got off the phone to son to see if he had heard and he had talked to his friend already today.

I'm just really tired..did lots of walking and shopping and it's really cold too!!

I posted my exercies and tracking on the challenge and now am ready for bed..the beer didn't help much haha..now I'm really sleepy!!

Thanks for dropping by and for all your comments..keep on Sparkin' and remember to count your blessings..after hearing of all these deaths I think I'm just glad to still be alive :)

Take care everyone...

Love Donna emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 12/11/2011 9:55AM

    Thanks for your comments on my "pent up demand" blog: sounds like you're having a tough December with sad news and not well either. Sorry. This time of the year can be very emotional in great and not so great ways . . . hope at least that you are all better soon.

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DUSTYGIRL25 12/11/2011 2:39AM

    Sleepy sounds good to me. I'm ready for some sleep now. First I need to catch up on your blogs. Sounds like you got a lot of exercise in today. Good for You!!
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ROSEWCI 12/10/2011 8:31PM

    emoticon sorry to hear about the losses...we must be grateful for all that we have & live our lives to the fullest! Life is too short....

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MARITIMER3 12/10/2011 9:08AM

    When I look around at my friends, I sometimes think that either I will be attending their funerals or they will be attending mine"! Sobering thought... we're no longer invincible.
Gail emoticon

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PARKERB2 12/9/2011 2:31PM

    We had a co-worker whose mom just passed away, so I can relate. Hope all goes well for you. Glad your a SPARKER And MY FRIEND.

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CELLISTA1 12/9/2011 11:40AM

    Isn't it interesting - and sad - that sometimes other people's death or illness reminds us how lucky we are to be alive and healthy? I totally relate to that. Two young people who work for me both have moms in their 40s-50s who have very bad cancer. I feel so sorry for the young ones in their 20s who most likely will be losing their moms. And I feel so grateful to be in my 60s, strong, and healthy. And my daughter is happy about it too!

Be well!

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BEATLETOT 12/9/2011 10:45AM

    I hope you enjoyed the beer, though! I wanted to drink a beer last night, but the soy milk was on the verge, so I polished it off with cereal, and then I didn't have enough calories for it.

Have a good weekend!

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LULUTU 12/9/2011 10:20AM

    I'm sorry it's been such a tough time for your family and your greater community. Take care of yourself.

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VICIOUS421 12/9/2011 3:39AM

    emoticon

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JSPEED4 12/9/2011 12:56AM

    Yep, life is a gift filled with blessings even where there are problems. emoticon Thank G-d, there's a Millennium filled with His reign and teachings!

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MARYHENNIG 12/9/2011 12:34AM

  Be sure to take care too!

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