Saturday, December 1, 2012

December - Devotions - Decorating!

Happy December!  I woke up today excited to kick off my December Heart & Spirit Quest.  And I am happy to report I checked two items off my list today! 

Decorating
I admit I started decorating a few days ago, but I spent a good deal of time decorating today.  While I did purchase a few new items this year, I really enjoy pulling out those memories from Christmas' past. 

A few items have lasted all 23 years of our marriage.  They remind me of our very first Christmas as Wifey & Hubby.  We were poor college students living in a tiny home just off campus. 

That year we only had one car which was a two-seater with a hatchback.  We brought our tree home hanging out of the back of our car and the tree top between us in the front.  We found pine needles in the car for months afterword, but we didn't care!  Some of the ornaments I purchased for that first tree hang on our tree today. 

Our Christmas tree holds wonderful memories.  There are childhood ornaments for both Hubby and me.  There are sports ornaments, ones with pictures of the cutest little boys ever, Star Wars guys, Peanuts characters, and Santas that all belong to the Scientist and the Engineer.  There are reminders of places we have lived, vacations we have taken, and people we have loved.  There are even a couple with funny stories!  The best part is - I know who or where each ornament came from, and I know which one of us it belongs to.  And until it comes down, I will sit and look at that tree and cherish all the blessings in our lives that those ornaments represent.

The big, main tree in the living room isn't the only one.  You will find some sort of little tree in most rooms of our home.  In the kitchen sits my Teacher Tree.  It holds very special ornaments from my students.  Since our move, I have been homeschooling the Engineer, but for five lovely years, I taught amazing kids in a classroom at a Christian school.  I adored those students and their families.  They blessed me greatly each Christmas and I have a little tree full of ornaments to prove it. 

Then there are the Nativity Scenes.  I love how they remind us of the true meaning of Christmas.  I have at least one in every room.  They aren't fancy or expensive.  Several are very simple and made out of wood, but each one has a story of where it came from as well. We also have a bigger one out on the front lawn that reminds me of one my parents put out for many years of my childhood.

The stockings are hung.  We have new ones this year.  It was time.  And I love them.

Sitting on the entry desk are my Carolers.  They are very similar to a set Mom has had out every Christmas since I can remember.  Even though I discovered my set in a store a few years ago, they bring back wonderful childhood memories when I set them out.  And on a fun note, Hubby has had to glue the boy back together when he was broken.  Mom's boy caroler has also been broken and glued back together (a few times, I believe.).

There's a bit more decorating to do, so final touches will finish it off tomorrow.  Then I will sit back and cherish the memories all around me.

Devotions
I also began Christmas devotions today.  I had two books and couldn't decide which one to do, so I am going to do one each morning and one each evening throughout the month. 

I am reading The Promise of Christmas is Jesus by Jack Countryman.  Today's reading was about God's Promise to Mary. 

The other book, I have read before, but want to enjoy it again.  Mom gave it to me.  It's Max Lucado's Celebrating Christmas with Jesus.  Mr. Lucado has such a gift with words.  Today he wrote on Jesus' Birth.

I know... this was a super long post.  I promise they won't all be this long! 

And let me point out, while I have great memories from every Christmas I can remember, there were ones when I wasn't with some of my family and those weren't as much fun as the years we were all able to gather together.  Even if your memories haven't all been magical, I hope you can recall good, happy memories as you put up your decorations this Christmas.

I also highly recommend following a little Christmas devotional throughout the month.  It's a great way to truly focus on the meaning of Christmas!

Only 24 days...

Have a Blessed Christmas!

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