Thursday, December 24, 2015

Advent Week by Week: Week 4 ~ Merry Christmas!

Week Four: Welcome back for the last installment of my Advent Week-by-Week series, installment #4.  So, as I said last week, we got our pictures made for our annual Christmas card. As usual, they turned out really nice, and Sabrina Stanford did an awesome job.

I couldn't pick just one, because there were several that I thought should have gone out to our family and friends.

Observe:

I love the lighting in this one!

I think this one might be my favorite.

I love some of the smiles in this one... and the magnolia trees in the background!

I ended up going with the first two for our Christmas card. Half of the cards were the first picture, and half were the second. I ordered one of the last picture for myself, for posterity's sake (and to frame)! And all of them are on my new updated About Page.

Christmas program ~ (Siiiigh, makes me want a real camera... alas.) Molly and Frances sang in their annual school Christmas program this year. They did so well! Frances sang "Christmastime is Here" from the Peanuts classic. Molly sang "Rudolph," and she danced across the stage as the reindeer "Dancer." So cute!

We went to see lights two different nights. We did a drive-thru light show and Rock City. I think you could say our Christmas events/experiences for fulfilling all of our annual traditions definitely satisfied the full quota! ;)

And guess what? Yep, yep. I made you one last {pretty} playlist. This is called "My Christmas," because it's what I want to listen to on my headphones as I work on the computer, walk around the block, or cook by myself in the kitchen.  It's the music that's not for my kiddos, or my husband... it's just for me and my ears, and it makes me sooooo happy!!  (And if you've never heard "Hard Candy Christmas" by Dolly Parton, you're missing out, big time. Just sayin.' She's really underrated in our times, I think. She really has a certain style you can't deny, and has contributed to the Southern culture in ways we won't see for a long, long time.;)

If you listen to one song, you should try "Lumberjack Christmas"!

Driving to see lights~ We drove to see the lights at Camp Jordan. They blinked in sync with a radio station. It was fabulous. We had hot chocolate afterwards.


The readings for this week included the verses from Psalm 121: I rejoiced when they said to me: 'Let us go to God's house!' And then it says some of my favorite lines from the Bible: 'I lift my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, maker of Heaven and Earth. The Lord is my keeper, the Lord is the shade on my right hand. The sun shall not hurt me by day, nor the moon by night.' 

Take a few minutes to ask yourself: Do you rejoice to go to God's house? Are you a Christian, or a Do-Gooder? Are you a true Christ-follower, or a Follow-your-own-way Hypocrite?  Here are a couple of questions to get your juices flowing, in order to answer the questions most accurately:

1. Do you have the love, joy, peace.... of the Holy Spirit during this season, or a stressful I-can't-spend-any-more-money-or-I'll-scream attitude?

2. Do you go to church on Christ-mass Sunday because of what it would look like if you didn't, or because of a longing in your heart to participate?

3. Do you give out of obligation, or duty? Do you give cheerfully and willingly, with excitement? Or do you grumble as your hands shake with frustration or stress?

4. Where is your heart? Are you a Scrooge, a Grinch, a Shepherd, or a Wiseman?

5. Take a deep breath. What is the first thing that pops into your mind? Your frantic to-do list, a cocktail, a garland on your to-buy list, Christmas decor....? Or a peace that passes understanding?

Those are just a few questions to make you think.


What do we mean when we say "Jesus is born!"?  It means, if you have the Spirit of the living God in your home, you have received the best dang Christmas present anyone has ever, ever received.
That's what it means.
With excitement, we welcome Christ into our hearts!

What can I give him poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb.
If I were a wiseman, I would do my part,
Yet what can I give him? Give him my heart.


Christmas Eve~ We're going to the 5:30 mass at our church tonight.  Then we'll have dinner with my family and brunch and opening presents at home and with more family, tomorrow!

Christmas Day~ Check back tomorrow to find out the winner of the giveaway!!!!

This was the final installment, so thanks for sticking around for my Advent Week by Week series. This is your last change to enter the giveaway, so comment away. Question: How much do you generally spend on Christmas, all told?  Also, if you want, take just a minute to add me to your feed reader of choice, or follow me on one of my social media channels, so that you don't miss a post! Links to the right. -->


Prizes for Advent Feature!
And the winner of my giveaway was: COME BACK TOMORROW to find out!  Send me your email address at tacy.and.stephen@gmail.com and I will put that in the mail for you!!!

Don't forget- I'm also throwing in a free PDF of my e-book!

Linking up with Like Mother, Like Daughter and 7QT

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