Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A Christmas Lesson
byTom Krause

"Is there a purpose? Why are we here?"
A little boy asked as the yuletide drew near."
I really do hope that someday I will know
the reason we stand out here in the snow,
ringing this bell as people walk by,
while thousands of snowflakes descend from the sky.
"The mother just smiled at her shivering son
who would rather be playing and having some fun
but soon would discover before evening was done
the meaning of Christmas the very first one.
The young boy exclaimed, "Mother where does it go?"
"All the pennies we collect - every year in the snow."
"Why do we do it? Why do we care?"
"We worked for these pennies,so why should we share?"
"Because once a baby - so meek and so mild
was born in a manger - so humble the child
the son of a King - was born in this way
to give us the message He carried that day.
"The present God gave the world on that night,
was the gift of his son to make everything right.
Why did he do it? Why did he care?
To teach about loving and how we should share."
"The meaning of Christmas, you see my dear son,
is not about presents or just having fun
but the gift of a father - his own precious Son
so the world would be saved
when his work was all done"
Now the little boy smiled - with a tear in his eye
as snowflakes kept falling from out of the sky -
rang louder the bell as the people walked by
while down deep in his heart
at last he knew why.
Copyright © Tom Krause 2003.

2 Corinthians 9: 15
I do not know of anyone who does not like to receive a gift, whether it is for birthday, Christmas or for any other special occasion. I know that I love to receive them. I find joy and excitement in the sense of wonder as to what is contained in that gift regardless of its size.Christmas is the time when most people are thinking about the giving and receiving of gifts. One verse has kept coming to my mind these last few days, which says. "Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift" (2 Corinthians 9: 15). In Chapters 8 and 9, Paul has been speaking to the Corinthian Christians concerning giving, not just the giving of money but the giving of themselves to the Lord. He also reminds them (and us) of the wonderful gift that God has given -- His marvelous grace. As I think of this verse, I cannot help but think of God's wonderful, unspeakable gift of love so freely given to all mankind -- the gift of the Christ Child born in a lowly stable in Bethlehem so many years ago. What amazing love that God should give the gift of His only Son wrapped in the human form of a baby. This One who had known, and could by rights claim, all the glory and majesty that heaven had to offer was willing to yield to His Father's will and come to earth, be born as a babe in a stable in a manger -- an animal feed trough as His bed. This is amazing love -- a gift unspeakable to man. John 3: 16 reminds us, "For God so loved the world that He gave -- He gave the gift of His beloved Son. What gift are we willing to bring to the One who was born -- born to be King?The wise men journeyed from afar to offer Him their worship and their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. They did not just happen to be nearby and decide to just drop in and give their gifts. To them there was much more involved. They had to journey from a far country that they might worship and give their gifts. Thus they came seeking to find the One they knew in their hearts was to be the King of the Jews. When they found Him, they worshipped and laid their gifts before Him.How do we respond to this wonderful gift that God has so freely given to us? Has Christmas time become so common place that we only think of celebrating with friends and families, wondering what we will be given with little or no thought as to what God has provided in the giving of His Son for our salvation?God has given us so much. All that He desires in return is that we love Him and accept the salvation that He offers to all who believe and allow Him to indwell their hearts and lives. We, like the wise men, need to come seeking the One who was born to be King, humbly bow before Him and give Him everything we possess. This is the greatest gift that we can offer to Him.When wise men come seeking for Jesus from far,With rich gifts to greet Him and led by a star,They found in a stable the Savior of men, A manger His cradle, so poor was He then.Though laid in a manger, He came from a throne,On earth though a stranger, in Heaven He was known.How lowly, how gracious His coming to earth! His love, my love kindles to joy in His birth.
(Richard Slater)
What gift do you bring this Christmas season? Can you say, "I bring Him my heart? That is the most wonderful gift that we can give for His unspeakable gift of love given on that first Christmas day in Bethlehem

Monday, December 17, 2007

Welcome to our Winter Wonderland

Friday, November 30, 2007

Naomi and her grandma with whom she shares her first name.
Naomi always enjoys her trips to visit grandma because when she takes the newspaper to Aunt Delores' house who lives nearby she is always given a treat (usually her favorite~a can of diet coke). Of course she is more than willing to make any errand we may need throughout the day. She had a great time at Thanksgiving playing with her niece and nephews. She even shared her CD player occasionally.

Lookinging Ahead!

Grandma always has time to snuggle with her loveable 4 year olds who will both turn 5 next month

Thursday, November 29, 2007


The main attraction at Thanksgiving


Christmas at Thanksgiving

Our son and his family won't be able to return from Kansas for Christmas so while we were together for Thanksgiving we exchanged gifts.

The twins we so excited to receive their racing outfits. They were reluctanct to take them off.
They thought it was so COOL to ride on their cousins 4 wheeler suited up!
Scary looking aliens, huh?
Leviticus 7:15And the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace offerings for thanksgiving shall be eaten the same day that it is offered; he shall not leave any of it until the morning.
I'm not sure that we obeyed fully this command because we did leave some for the next day. But we were so thankful for all the little ones at the table. What a blessing. We have so much to thank Him for. For He's been so good to us!

It was wonderful to have our grandchildren with us~ALL of them!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Naomi and I in our Poodle Skirts

Trick or Treat

I'm inclined to believe it will be a trick

Saturday, November 10, 2007

He loves me, he loves me not.......AWWW He loves ME!
I love him, too!!
Phillip has been buying me flowers almost weekly. They aren't the most expensive but whose counting the cost? They have been so lovely. We recently got a new tower for our computer so we are still in the process of discovering where everything is. When I find the other picture of my flowers I will post it. Do you suppose Mr. Claus is hitting Mrs. Claus up for something big this year? LOL I think he just loves me!!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Can you guess what we are doing today?

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Confused? Yes, definitely! I just went up in the attic Monday to find a little angel to add to the wreath my daughter gave me a couple years ago which had little angels with each of my 6 grandchildren's names on it. Last year we were so lovingly made grandparents again in February and I had never gotten around to adding Aaron's angel to the wreath. In fact I couldn't even find the extra angels. So this dilemma took me to the attic.
Well Zachary my 4 year old grandson followed me and so sweetly said Grandma lets get the Christmas boxes out.I reasoned within myself and agreed that i could do a more thorough search if I took them out into the bedroom connected to the attic. Then of course following the failure to find the little ceramic angel Zachary suggested we bring the boxes downstairs. Absolutely not! No way ~ no can do!! Zachary (says I) I will have to clean and rearrange the living room first. Grandma, I will pick up my toys and run the sweeper says he. Oh how angelic Zachary offers his assistance. I agreed.
Today (Tuesday) Zachary says grandma could we bring the tree downstairs? Oh not right now. I have chores to do. I will help you Grandma. And he does. Now Grandma? Well you know we are NOT putting up the tree till your sister is here with us and only in November! So we push, pull, and thump the big box with the Christmas tree down the steps. Zachary is happy. Abigail comes home from second grade. Grandma she says Thursday I don't have school. It's teacher inservice day. It's also I'm thinking November 1st. So I announce Thursday will be the day we set the tree up. Yeaaaaa Grandma's a heroine.
My husband comes home from work to his favorite potato soup. The grandchildren go home. Phillip says I could help you put the Christmas tree together. You know how all the orange, red, brown, blue, black and white...etc tips on the branches have to match. I am thinking I remember how carefully I put the tree away last year and how quickly it will go together. But I will need a place to put those Christmas gifts I have just ordered when they come. Alright and we dive in. Like two children. But we will NOT decorate the tree till Thursday. Absolutely NOT! No way.
Now if I could just find that troublesome little angel who got me into this in the first place.How confusing life can be but also how enjoyable the simple things such as doing family activities.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Farmer Zachary

Monday, October 01, 2007

Do you think we would fit in?
8/31 Our Anniversary
Harvest Time 13 five gallon buckets
Grandpa & Abigail shucking corn
Hannah cutting & bagging it
finished product = 60 bags

Did you think I had forgotten my Blog? Well life happens you know and the faster I go the behinder I get. LOL I was also waiting to get some pictures put on a CD so I could update and with that accomplished let's begin!!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Are these bears fighting over my grandchildren?
Sitting by the Beaver Dam
I want to buy this puppy, Grandma!
Naomi takes a break

Thursday, September 06, 2007

A trip to Cabela's with Grandma this summer.
Abigail sitting in the antler's of an Elk.
Zachary ~ the Great Hunter
Naomi enjoying the sun
Hold onto him Abigail ~who knows what he may do

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Looking back over the previous month we put aside some news to focus on the month of our anniversary so now we need to play "catch-up." Several of you already know that our grandson Aaron had open heart surgery Aug6th and we are very thankful it was successful and he continues to improve. He has gained 2 lbs. God is so Good!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Dear Husband. I am most Blessed to be your wife. May God grant us many more years together. I love you with all my heart!
Thank you for making Our Day so memorable!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Marriage License

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Those Special Moments in Weddings
As I was thinking about our wedding I recalled that particular incident that happens in most weddings or wedding rehearsals that the bride and groom look back on and say, "Do you remember...and then smile or blush." Well it occurred to me that I hadn't shared ours so here goes.
It just so happens that both of these events happened to the blushing bride (me) which left me blushing even more brightly. I really do believe it has something to do with being blonde till the age of 4. LOL The first took place at the wedding rehearsal. I had watched all the attendants practice walking up the aisle and then it was my turn. Well, maybe, I was just a little too eager because I was half way up the aisle when I realized I had left my dear father standing back at the vestibule. So with quite a bite of teasing from my future brothers-in-law I started again including my Dad.
The day of the wedding everything was going splendid and we came to the part in the ceremony where the preacher says"You may now kiss your bride" and This eager bride was leaning in for the big smooch when to her confusion her groom is pulling away. It's then that I realize that I had forgotten to allow Phillip to lift the veil. Amid the snickers and blushes Phillip carried out his "duty" and Mr. & Mrs. Phillip H. Avery were presented to the congregation.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Wedding Prayer
Only the work of Our Father can blend two people into one.
Only He can join them into perfect union, and guide,
so that His will shall be done.
Only Our Father can make two hearts trust,
and learn to love and depend upon one another each day.
And this Wedding Prayer brings this hope,
as you travel along Life's way.
He has brought you both together,
to share until death do you part;
May your sharing and your giving,
bring much happiness,
and be extended straight from the heart.
May all your hopes be fulfilled,
with all that you imagine,
and your dreams give birth to reality.
And may you envision your lives, together as one,
and may they become all that you expect them to be.
As the showers of each season pour forth,
raining down upon your very souls,
May you take hold of the Master's hand,
and allow Him to lead you,
into all the places He wishes you to go.
Newspaper Report
Marriage License
Wedding Cake

Friday, August 24, 2007

Mr. & Mrs. Phillip H. Avery
Our Wedding Day
As we begin our life together
At the alter as we meet
A day of love and blessings
Makes our life complete.
Happiness today and always
Is what I wish for too
The beginning of a new life
Joy in all we do.
Let us make a resolution
As we start every day
Always say I love you
In a very special way.
And when the day has ended
Never go to bed mad
Make our peace be glad we did
Or our life will be very sad.
God Bless us in our marriage
May love remain within our heart
And all our days together
Be blessed right from the start.
©Ginny Bryant
The Wedding Party
Our Parents

Mother and the Blushing Bride
prepared for her Groom!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

You Did Splendid!
Tell your spouse (and kids and friends and sisters and co-workers and pastor and and and) how they are “just right”; in fact Dr. Angelou author of I know why the Caged Bird Sings said, let them know that they are the best. “You are splendid.” Say it out loud (just saying it to the air brings a smile to my face).
In the morning, say it. Call home from work and say it. Send an email and say it. Walk in the door and say it with a kiss. Before you close your eyes at night say it.
“You are so good at that.” “It’s just like you to be so thoughtful.” “You are so handsome.” “You smell wonderful.” “I really like your smile.” “I love hearing you sing in the shower.” “You are such a wonderful cook.” There is no end.
Listen to this: As Dr. Angelou said, "call a person a dog and don’t you be surprised if they act like one. If you tell them they are splendid, they will want to live up to it."
Short and simple, isn’t it? I’m grateful that she reminded me.
Please, pass it on
While looking up articles about marriage (since that's our focus this month) I came across a site where a lady was blogging her view on a successful marriage and her personal advice. I don't want to offend anybody's sensibilities so I will condense some good points I thought she made.

1. Kissing Advisory
When is the last time you kissed your spouse? I mean really had a kiss fest? In another of my very informal surveys, I found that most couples (married more than 4-5 years) rarely do more than smooch! You know, that hello-honey, see-you-later-dear, good-night smooch. Come on! Think back to those first months or years of marriage. It was like a personal electrical storm.

2. Date Night
A lot of couples have instituted, are thinking about starting, or at least have heard of the concept of “date night”. Many self-help marriage gurus counsel for it, as I do. If you‘ve missed the advice, it is to set aside one night per week (or bi-weekly, or monthly!) to go on a date with your spouse. The key here is that the day is sacrosanct; there is no messing with it, i.e. no forgetting, or making other plans, or excuses. Come whatever the two of you will go on that date! (This is in a perfect world because there are kid’s band concerts, visiting relatives, etc… that do trump date night.)

First of all: Beware! The humdrum of the marriage can follow you on your date if you’re not careful. Do you talk about your kids, or the broken toilet, or next week’s schedule? (NO) Do you dress up? (YES) Do you get excited for it, because it is special? (This is the aim.) Will it become routine, just like so much else? (AVOID)

If you want the date night idea to work, then some work must be put into the date. Speak with your husband about how to set it up. Come up with a plan together. To fulfill differing interests, take turns planning the date. (No time? Come on! Think about it on your way to work, or taking a shower, or folding the clothes, or falling asleep.) A great starting point is a walk down memory lane. What did you do when you first met?

No matter what you choose, the most important component to the evening is attitude – for BOTH of you. Discuss how this date, in the craziness of your lives, can fuel your marriage and how the more both of you fill it up, the further you will be able to drive.

The whole point here is that you look forward to and enjoy date night. You know, really have fun together like you did in the beginning. It sounds so simple, but somehow a lot of us have forgotten how to do this. NOW is the time to change that. Take classes together, visit a museum, play tennis, walk and talk, something you both will enjoy.

3. Hold Hands
The most common public touch is hand holding. It’s a universal symbol of caring, tenderness and security. Studies have actually been done showing that holding hands can reduce stress, for both men and women. This probably is linked to the fact that holding our parents’ hand made us feel safe.

What you come up with for the public arena will be a great baseline for how you touch at home. Gentle arm touching as you pass in the living room, a surprise kiss in the kitchen, or footsy at the family table. It is in and of itself a way to feel connected again.

4. Reminisce
Spend the evening rereading those those old love letters. Revisit those places you used to go or those first in your relationship ....first date, first kiss, where you became engaged etc.

5. Talk
One waitress recalls, being able to pick out the couples who had been married for a long time….they weren’t having as much fun as the couples who were just dating. I remember that the older (meaning in their 40’s!) couples didn’t talk or laugh so much. I remember that during the lunch rush, these couples would read separate sections of the newspaper and not speak at all! And when they did talk, they didn’t lean into one another, hold hands, or stare into each other’s eyes. I remember thinking that this would NEVER be me. I would never allow my marriage to become silent or dull.
Well, I do understand some of this now, and I can appreciate it. Reading the paper over lunch isn’t such a bad thing. HOWEVER, almost always, my husband or I will find some nugget to share with the other. For instance: “Oh, Dear, look at what our president said now,” I might say to him and continue on to read the quote. We will then have a short conversation about our frustrations with our government before we go back to our respective reading material.

I also understand that, as the years pass, speaking isn’t so necessary. We know our spouse so well; we don’t need to have the conversation. In fact, why would we need to rehash our conversation about the President? We both know where the other stands on this. Right?

Perhaps not. Perhaps this is a relationship black hole. Once you skirt the periphery of this kind of assumption, you are in trouble. The hole sucks you in faster and further until one day you turn around and realize that you and your husband just don’t talk anymore. Not only this, you don’t even know what they think anymore.

It’s a TRAP. And a tricky trap at that. We can be talking to each other all along, and still find ourselves losing the essence of one another. The tricky part is that we get caught up talking only about the minutia of life: schedules, remodeling, fixing the car, daycare, bills, TAXES, cleaning, new purchases, etc…. Of course, in order to keep our lives in order, we must talk about all of these things. However, it is my contention that quite often it is in place of real communication.

I bring all of this up as part of my series to recapture “that lovin’ feelin’”. As I have on my other “lovin’” topics, it is helpful to think back to our dating days. What did you talk about then? You didn’t have the house or the kids or the cars or TAXES back then. Most likely you talked a lot more about your dreams, your plans, what you liked/disliked, how you felt.
The hope here is that these talks will spark other talks so that when you go out on that dinner date, the waitress might just see two people completely engaged with each other. After all, it is a lot easier to gaze into each other’s eyes, and hold hands over the table, while talking about your dreams than it is while talking about the bus schedule….

6. Weekend Getaways
Stress in marriage and everyday life can add up quickly. It will benefit your marriage if you plan occasional weekends or even a day away ..... just you and your spouse. You will soon find this such a blessing that you may decide to start a small fund just for these oasis of R&R. (Phillip & I specifically recommend the Marriage Matters Retreat) Find something that fits your finances and pleasures.

This concludes another view from our marriage!
B i b l e s & F l o w e r s

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

After marriage it is important to keep the romance alive here are some dating ideas for under $20.00. Sorry if it is difficult to read.

You are Invited!