Snapshots & Snippets

Snapshots & Snippets: It’s February!

Welcome to “Snapshots and Snippets”where I share a bit of this and that from our week in hopes that you find something useful or inspiring. 

{Ahhh chooo … sniff, sniff}

You guessed it, we’ve been sick {again} this week.  Honestly, this year (if you count December too) we’ve been battling this cold for months.  Just when we are all well, one of us bites the dust again and it spreads.  We start the rounds of homeopathy, hot lemon-honey water and apple cider vinegar baths to remedy our ailments.  In some ways these sick days are sweet times, especially since I don’t get near enough face time with my oldest son.  Still, I’d rather not have to resort to illness to get quality time together.  You know.  Despite the illness in our home, we still had some good times this week.  

Boys Sick

 

{Keepers of the Home}

I love these girls!  At the beginning of this school year several of my mom friends who have girls started talking about who was going to facilitate the Keepers of the Home gatherings this year.  You’ll never guess who took on that job.  {wink wink … raise your hand if you love pink!}  Keepers is a group of girls age 6-16 who come together once a month to grow in the art of homemaking.  We start with an icebreaker followed by prayer and a devotion.  Then each girl shares a home-related craft, project or skill they have worked on since our last meeting.  Skills shared range from scripture memory, to playing a piece on the piano, to showing off homemade jewlery, to cooking the snack for the group to share.  After this “show-and-tell,”  the girls and the host mom do a craft together. 

Keepers 1

This month we made fleece heart pillows.  Following the craft, we share the snack and then everyone heads home.  I made a valentine’s themed snack (something we usually wouldn’t eat in our home) of Chex Mix coated in pink candy melts with valentine M&Ms. 

Keepers 3

You may wonder why a boy-mom would host a girls group once a month.  I just love shepherding girls and when my friends all had this desire – to gather their girls together – but none of them felt they had the time or energy to facilitate, I prayed about it and stepped in.  I love this monthly shot of estrogen into my normally testosterone laden life.  The sheer sweetness of it does me good.

Keepers 2

{My boys happily spent the hour and a half in their rooms watching movies since they were ill and couldn’t be at friends’ homes this time around}.

 

{A Life of Devotion}

I’ve been going through the book, Developing Intimacy with God by Alex Aronis for a few months now.   Based on the Ignatian spiritual exercises, the book leads readers through prayer exercises with the aim of growing in being with Jesus, becoming like Jesus and living for Jesus.  I’ve been extremely blessed and would even venture to say this study/practice has done more for my walk with God than most others I have taken up in recent years.  One key thought that sticks with me is how we enter into life with God thinking of ourselves – even approaching scripture with a spirit of condemnation toward ourselves rather than looking at God and moving towards Him in responsive love.  We love because He first loved us.  Far from being touchy-feely, this book has helped me refine my life mission, better know how to discern God’s will and see myself with more humility and willingness to bend towards God and His ways.  Such goodness.

 

{Investing in Friendship}

This week, despite our recuperation from illness, we have plans to head to the coast (just my youngest son and I) to visit friends and go to a play with them.  The community where my friend lives has four plays a year which are geared towards children.  Earlier this year we went to see Peter Rabbit.  This time it’s Beauty and the Beast.   Bonus, while we are there, my friend’s husband cares for the children on Thursday evening so we can go get massages and eat supper by the fireplace at a lovely restaurant on a golf green.  Friendship is an investment.  We need to make time, give of ourselves and our resources, pray and care for those who matter most.  Our lives can get busy.  Friendship is an oasis in storms, a place of goodness and comfort and one of the deepest joys in life.  To keep our relationships healthy, we need to be intentional about investing and treasuring our friends.  Part of my resolve in 2016 is to intentionally invest in the women who matter most to me.   Do you have friendships that are treasures to you?  How are you adding to their lives and letting them know how much they matter to you?

 

{Goodies Around the Web}

I’m having a great time perusing the web to find good things to share with you.  I can’t wait to share a few tidbits every week for you to go look into.  This week I’ve got two worth clicking on to check out.

Do you ever sit down to pray and find yourself thinking about your grocery list, the to-dos for the coming day, or the way your husband talked to you before he left for work?  No?  Well then, this post is not for you.  Seriously, I know we all struggle with distraction in prayer at times.  Gavin Ortberg wrote a great post with practical suggestions for those of us with spiritual ADD.

I had the blessing of going through Psalm 23 with a friend over a year ago.  We took two books as our “guides” on our journey to deepening our understanding of God as our Good Shepherd.  The first was Phillip Keller’s book “A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23” and the second was Juanita Ryan’s study, “The 23rd Psalm: The Lord Our Shepherd.”  I highly recommend this journey with these books to any of you.  Juanita’s blog is filled with sweet reminders of God’s love as well as resources for healing the deeper hurts which often block us from greater intimacy with Jesus.  This week she wrote on The Wonder, as she reflects on being fearfully and wonderfully made.

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