Thursday, December 27, 2018

10 Virgins

We watch the sign language Scripture Stories at night and take turns voice interpreting.  Last night the parable of the 10 Virgins left me pondering, as always, what it means.  Tonight as we watched the parable of the Talents, I felt inspired to interpret the parable of the 10 Virgins thus.

All 10 Virgins had the resources to buy oil.  The wise virgins brought the oil.  The foolish virgins brought their lamps full of oil but didn't bring extra.  Their funds were not committed to the task at hand; having light for when the bridegroom came.  When their lamps went out, they were asking the wise Virgins to share their oil, and the wise Virgins told them to go buy some from those that sell.  It seems they were able to go buy more oil.  They had the resources to have been prepared.

So this lead me to think of how we hold back for ourselves instead of committing to God's work.  And that is how we will be foolish in the last days, if we have held back our "time, talents or resources from the building up of the kingdom of God on Earth." 

That's heavy. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2018


We went caroling with candles (!) to 7 neighbors last night.  We knocked on a few doors and got no answers but 7 people did answer and we sang Joy to the World.  It was sweet.  Sometimes we walked from one house to the next but sometimes we drove.  I'm so glad to share this with the children.  They can hold their part well enough for me to sing harmony to them.  I love this life.

Monday, December 24, 2018

100 carols for choir

I have 3 copies of this book and enjoy going online to find recordings to hear what is in the book.  Tonight we sat on the couch and searched out these that we enjoyed so far.  M was really happy when the shepherd's pipe carol came along since it is one she sang in the children's choir.  I'm so grateful the kids get to have such a lovely choir to participate in.  We'll continue our inventory tomorrow.
a great and mighty wonder
a maiden most gentle
a virgin m1 merrily on highost pure
angelus ad virginem
all my heart this night rejoices
as with gladness men of old
away in a manger
nativity carol
child in a manger (this one is funny because the tune is used in a 70s song)
deck the hall
Jingle, bells
ding dong merrily on high 
ding dong... wood
god rest you merry, gentlemen
shepherd's pipe carol
wexford carol

Christmas just us

This year P's parents are on a mission and grandma L went to Louisiana with aunt E and L.  So it's just the 7 of us (just the 7!) for Christmas.  For years we've done the P family traditions.  This year we've done stockings for soldiers, santa boxes, and gave gifts at a nursing home.  Here we are on Christmas Eve and it's just a regular night.  Since it was Monday we had FHE and I chose "In the bleak mid-winter" as the song.  The children are watching Pinochio because I don't do Santa. 

We had a lovely church service on Sunday.  We watched music and the spoken word and the 1st Presidency devotional when we got home.  It's been wonderful.

Today we drove up to Sam's Club and bought something for each child that they'd wanted but we never buy.
G: Hot Pockets
M: Orange Chicken
lP: Corn Dogs
B: Chex Mix

Tomorrow we'll eat our festive food, open presents, call grandparents and go caroling with our neighbors. 

It's nice.

Saturday, December 15, 2018


Tonight I was able to attend the Choir concert for the girls.  Their Children's Chorus sings with the Community Chorus and a small orchestra at Christmas.  The Children's voices with the adult voices and orchestra are so amazing.  The church they performed in had excellent acoustics.  I was sitting in nave so it was as if just 30 people were witnessing this 100+ member ensemble.  It was wonderful.  I often get distracted by the other people around me during a performance so I'm so glad for this chance to enjoy the beautiful children.

After the concert we walked back to the car parked in a private driveway of someone we knew to be out of town, instead of walking half a mile to the place we were going to park.  The children sang as we drove home.  They like to goof off but occasionally they would just sing and it was so beautiful.
Pat a Pan
The Snow Lay on the Ground

I volunteered to help with uniforms this year.  Uniforms cost $40 new and kids grow.  So the idea was to keep uniforms and let kids pass them on as they grow.  Uniforms could be turned in for $10 and a used one in the right size bought for $20.  The choir gets $10 off of each turn over.

Tonight I had brought shirts and was able to help 2 girls move into more comfortable shirts.  I also brought black socks and one girl needed them.  I borrowed red ribbon and 3 girls needed them, 2 of whom were my own...  I also replaced the toilet paper in the ladies room for both stalls at the church.  I'm grateful that I was able to be helpful and didn't accidentally take the scarf of the lady sitting next to me like I did last year.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Christmas Season

After talking to a friend today I decided to spread out the gift getting to the days leading up to December 25.  I got some nice things from the store and asked B if he would like to give them to his siblings.  He wrapped them in scraps of cloth and ribbons.  The kids gathered in the front room and each excitedly opened their gifts.  I'm excited about this approach to Christmas.  Next weekend we'll be going to G-town and opening gifts with Grandma L and aunts.  Presents from Grandparents have come.  So we'll let the kids open the gifts over the next 10 days.  Christmas morning we may have nothing left to open.

Another tradition I'm going to start is buying hors d'oeuvres from Sam's club to eat on Christmas.  Today as we were shopping at Sam's the kids scanned the options.  Shrimp (M), Candy (P), Spanakopita (me), Hot Pockets (G).  We'll find our way.  My goal is for the children to be actively and excitedly engaged in their contributions to family meals.  If we eat Candy and Hot Pockets for Christmas, that's fine with me.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Family Photo!

Today we got a family picture, very rare, in church clothes, even rarer!  I'm grateful for the people who set up this wonderful little scene.  So nice.

During deaf sacrament meeting G pushed the wheelchair of one of the men so he could serve the sacrament.  It was so emblematic of the sort of man I hope G will become.  Helping others be able to serve is the goal.

Sunday, December 2, 2018


We're preparing to sing for the Christmas meeting on December 23.  G stays home with the 3 youngest kids and it is so nice to go sing.  It's been years since I could just go sing and enjoy being in the choir.  Each week there are a few more voices.  We're learning the music and it's great.  P is conducting and my friend A is on the piano.  I love singing in a choir.

We played our tuba, tenor horn, bells, guitar, piano and sang for the stake nativity event.  L slept through the first time.  Then the sister coordinating invited us to stay and play an hour later.  I took the 4 older children around and looked at all the nativity sets and visited the family history library.  We played I SPY with a gigantic Italian Nativity in the family history center.  It was so nice to wander around with the older 4.  P stayed with the still sleeping L.  L woke up right before our second set and then sat happily eating his cookie and fruit snacks.

I love music and Christmas.  To me that is more important and fun than all the gifts.  I'm so glad we got to share that as a family.  Each year we'll improve, I hope, and more and more children will be singing and playing.