Sunday, November 28, 2010

Advent Challenge

I grew up with an advent wreath. For every day leading up to Christmas, there was a small fabric package to open with a verse and some kind of object. We four children would jostle for the chance to open each one, read the verse, and pass out the stuff.

We don't do that now, but we have an alternative that is our tradition. My sister sent it to me last year.

On each day of December leading up to Christmas, count the appropriate privilege/blessing and pay the fine. Send the money to a foundation that fights poverty. (We put ours in our bank and give it to the MCC sale penny power challenge.) Try it out.

1. 10 cents for every hot water tap in your house.
2. 75 cents for every vehicle your family owns.
3. 5 cents for every pair of jeans you own.
4. 25 cents if your family subscribes to the newspaper.
5. 5 cents for every bed in your house.
6. 3 cents for every makeup/beauty item.
7. 3 cents for every pair of footwear.
8. 3 cents for every light switch in your house.
9. 20 cents for every tub/shower.
10. 10 cents for every flush toilet.
11. 2 cents for every bar/dispenser of soap.
12. 15 cents if you have dishes to eat off of.
13. 15 cents if you have cooking pots in your cupboards.
14. 5 cents for every window in your house.
15. 10 cents for every outside door.
16. 20 cents for every television in your house
17. 5 cents for every magazine subscription
18. 25 cents if your family has more than 25 CD's/DVDs.
19. 5 cents for every meal you had meat with this past week.
20. 10 cents for every non-water beverage you drank yesterday.
21. 25 cents if you have a snow blower or a gas/electric lawn mower.
22. 3 cents for every item of hair care stuff.
23. 15 cents for every bedroom in your house.
24. 5 cents for every blanket in your house.
25. 15 cents for every gift you received this Christmas.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I'm taking a little break. Don't miss me too much.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

giving thanks, day 23

Today, I'm thankful...

...for a five-day weekend.
...for the time I'll get to spend with family over that weekend.
...that it's almost time to decorate for Christmas.
...for evenings at home with Brad.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

giving thanks, days 20 & 21

This weekend, I am thankful...

...that I am done with my face to face classes for the semester.
...for a beautiful piano to play.
...that this is a short week of school.
...that we get to have days off/breaks together.
...that basketball is going well so far.
...that Brad is watching a Christmas movie even though the season hasn't started yet.

Friday, November 19, 2010

giving thanks, day 19

Today, I'm thankful...

...that I have a free place to stay during my weekend intensives.
...that this week is over.
...for books to read.
...for the days when I actually have time to read those books.
...for cookie-baking extravaganzas.
...that our freezer issues have not resulted in any spoiled food (yet).
...for quiet weekends at home with Brad (not that this weekend is one).

Thursday, November 18, 2010

thanks......guest edition

Brad is thankful
when 2nd graders make pasta portraits for me
my players
megan's cookies
sarah talking to my team after practice
my assistant coaches
ripping a hole in my pants and telling me students how it happened
my family
my co workers
getting worked up over stuff some folks might not care about

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

giving thanks, day 17

Today, I'm thankful...

...for summer. You know, that it happens. Because I am not a fan of cold. Yes, I know it's only November and it's going to be a long, cold, icy winter. Don't remind me.
...for my Grandma Donna's cookie recipes. Yum.
...that I get to see my sister Sarah tomorrow! (I just wish I could see Hannah and Daniel and Jamie and Jason, too...)
...that basketball season means I can sneak in a little bit of Christmas music before Brad gets home.
...for my best friend. :)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

giving thanks, day 16

Today, I'm thankful...

...that my co-teacher and I went to a two-day conference last week and are getting better.
...for basketball season!
...for a sewing machine - and the know-how to use it.
...for a patient and generous husband.
...that my sister is coming to visit this week.

Monday, November 15, 2010

giving thanks, day 15

(it's been a rough Monday, so this list tonight is a bit short.)

Today, I'm thankful...

...that my first job ever was amazing in just about every way.
...that there are nights when leftovers come out of the freezer to magically become supper.
...that I have a husband who's also a teacher and understands.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

giving thanks, days 13 & 14

This weekend, I'm thankful...

...for lazy weekends.
...that I grew up oblivious to a world in which sexism exists.
...for hobbies and "projects in progress."
...that my last weekend intensive of the semester will be over a week from now.
...for the times when Brad takes the recycling and goes grocery shopping.
...that high school basketball starts tomorrow.

Friday, November 12, 2010

On Love

One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?"
Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
-Matthew 22: 35-40

Kids learn to love and hate and use words effectively by watching us.

Jesus preached love. What message are your words and actions sending? Think about it.

giving thanks, day 12

Today, I'm thankful...

...for weekends.
...for opportunities to become a better teacher.
...for KU basketball and homemade pizza (well, I'm anticipating this one).
...for people who are willing to take a stand, when I don't know what to do myself.
...that somewhere along the way, I picked up the belief that being a Christian means that love comes first, above and beyond all convictions or verses or theology or creeds.
...that I'm able to keep that belief at the forefront of who I am, even when those around me believe otherwise.
...for Brad.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

giving thanks, day 11

Today, I am thankful...

...for warm slippers.
...for books I can lose myself in.
...for the winding down of a semester.
...for technology that works (not that it does right now when I need it to).
...for a husband who bakes cookies.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


around my house tonight...

giving thanks, day 10

Today, I'm thankful...

...for quiet evenings at home.
...for workshops that make me feel like I can do what it is they talk about - tomorrow.
...that sometimes, when I click the auto-edit button in picasa it does nothing.
...that Brad is getting pretty darn excited about basketball season. (I am, too.) ... we'll see what the verdict is on Monday evening.
...for a great big freezer in my basement.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

giving thanks, day 9

Today, I'm thankful...

...that I got the idea to record the things I'm thankful for.
...that I believe it's okay to end sentences with prepositions.
...for quiet.
...for holiday baking supplies. Yes, I am about ready to start.
...for short teaching weeks.
...for "come to Jesus" meetings with my kiddos - hopefully ones that make a difference.
...for amazing coworkers.
...for a husband who balances me in many different ways.

Monday, November 8, 2010

giving thanks, day 8

Today, I'm thankful...

...for Vitamin C drops.
...for a home - not a house, a home.
...for short weeks of school.
...for hugs.
...for warm November days.

I keep thinking I need to take some pictures to accompany these posts; they're a little boring. But they're not really for you - sorry. They're for me to become more intentional about being thankful, because I have a lot to be thankful for.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

giving thanks, days 6 & 7

This weekend, I'm thankful...

...for a mom who likes to do projects with me.
...for a husband who cleans bathrooms and does laundry (so I can relax and have fun doing projects with my mom).
...for BBQ with my parents, brother, and grandparents.
...for Sunday Secrets.
...for sunshine.

Friday, November 5, 2010

giving thanks, day 5

Today I am thankful for Fridays and a fun evening out with Brad and our friends.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

giving thanks, day 4

Today, I'm thankful...

...for sweatpants (um hm, I am all about the comfy this week).
...for a job I get to leave at 3:30 (even though I have to be there are 7:30, and even though I usually don't leave then).
...for beautiful mums that bloom all fall.
...for texting.
...for hugs.
...that next week I "get" (not sure if it's a good get yet) to go to a two-day co-teaching conference with my co-teaching partner.
...for great meals made by Brad.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

giving thanks, day 3

Today I am thankful...

...that you are taking the time to read this post. :)
...for books. I could probably write a whole post on my thankfulness for books, but I will spare you - for now.
...for quiet evenings at home.
...for sweet text messages from Brad when he's gone for the evening.
...for snowflake pants (yes, two nights in a row).
...for my sixth grade students.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

giving thanks, day 2

Today I am thankful...

...for snowflake pants.
...for patience (when I have it).
...for the right to vote (even though I am not always happy with the results or do not always feel my vote truly "counts" in a state that seems to make the same choices over and over).
...for breakthroughs with my students, however small or short-lived (though this one will hopefully be long-lasting and come yearly now that I have my stuff figured out).
...for morning laughs with my husband (about exercising our right to vote, no less).
...that the holidays are coming, and with them, time with family.

Monday, November 1, 2010

giving thanks, day 1

Today, I am thankful for... husband who (almost) always goes grocery shopping with (or for) me.
...a fantastic family.
...the means to complete my master's (and Brad's too, when he starts) without loans.
...a big freezer where I can store leftovers (so that sometimes I don't even have to think about cooking) and food (especially beef).
...coworkers who are also friends.