December Photo Challenge: Tis the Season

photo blog challenge

Imagine my surprise when I realized December was almost over and I hadn’t written one word here since Dec. 7th! And now, it’s time again for PJ’s monthly photo challenge over at a ‘lil hoohaa. This month’s theme is, appropriately, Tis the Season.

Tis the Season for many things around here. Tis the Season for losing my mind with the holidayz…which can put a person in a daze. Tis the Season for birthdays…The Golfer and my Mama. Tis the Season for winter activities…bonfires and snowballs. And, Tis the Season for family.

So, here’s my five:

Tis the Season 1
Tis the Season for Christmas! This was the first year Twix was big enough to be the designated tree topper….much to Peanut’s dismay.
tis-the-season-1

Tis the Season 2
Tis the Season for Ho Ho Ho Hats. Last year, Twix was not very cooperative with the Santa hat….or any hat for that matter. This year, she couldn’t get enough of wearing it. Peanut is an old pro at this so capturing this shot was much easier this year.
tis-the-season-2

Tis the Season 3
Tis the Season to burn the brush pile in the backyard. This annual event usually takes place on the first snow so we don’t set the neighborhood on fire. Coincidentally, this year’s bonfire fell during the time when The Floridian golfer daughter was back in town for the holidays. Neighbors are invited so they don’t freak out when they see the flames. We try to make it a time to gather friends and family for “s’more” food and fun. 🙂
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Tis the Season 4
Tis the Season for a birthday for The Golfer from Florida. And since she was home, it was also time to try to capture both daughters and grand girls since they were all in one place.
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Tis the Season 5
And, finally, Tis the Season for family. A rare occurrence when we’re all together in one place at the same time.
tis-the-season-5

There’s my five for December. Don’t forget to visit PJ’s place on December 31st to see the other seasonal festivities.

 

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Our month in pictures-February

February 2016

Our February held a mixed bag of events and experiences. Twix officially turned two years old and is a non-stop tornado force of nature whirlwind every waking minute of the day. She literally cannot be left alone for one minute before getting into something. Her latest love is ripping paper. It’s so exciting to hear rrriiippppppp….for both her and us since we never know if it’s a scrap piece of paper, a magazine or some important document she’s gotten off the desk.

The annual winter run-away from winter happened to Los Cabos, Mexico and was a fun-filled week with sand, surf and sun. We spent a lot of time at the “kiddie” pool with our friend, Hector, who kept us supplied with Happy Hour drinks regardless of the time of day.

Bookending the vacay was head colds and a sinus infection, so February swung between wonderful “highs” and miserable “lows.” But the weather started to break toward the end of the month so, perhaps, spring will arrive on time this year. 🙂 Even though we didn’t really get the winter snowstorm I so often long for, these old bones are ready for warmer temps and the muse is ready for spring blossoms.

Playing along with others at Mona’s Picturesque for The Month in Pictures game.

One month down…….

January 2016-72

January brought the need to find Peanut’s old snow bibs so Twix could go outside and really experience snow now that she’s more interactive. And interact she did. Saturday, January 9th brought a few inches of the white stuff….just enough for a bit of sledding in the yard. I knew something was coming when I looked at the feeders and saw flocks of birds descending upon all of them. But the forecasted 4-7 inches turned into only 2-3 inches, so crisis averted. But you would have thought, by the bird activity, that we were going to be snowed in for days. Peanut and Papa did venture our last week to burn the brush pile and play in the snow.

January also brought family birthdays and good excuses to get together for dinner. And birthday tulips. And birthday carnations. Other than that, it was a quiet month inside and out. I’m really working on staying true to my Word for 2016.

And a huge thank you to Mona’s Picturesque for generously offering another photo collage for 2016.

Linking up with Mona’s Picturesque and her month in photos.

Photo challenge: Inside

photo blog challenge

January’s prompt for PJ’s photo challenge is Inside. While winter has been fairly mild here in Middle Missouri, I can’t seem to talk myself into going outside much…so this prompt is perfect.

Inside #1: Bridget is inside…and the birds at the feeders are outside and very thankful. She perches on the windowsill and watches…always watches. As if somehow, miraculously, she’ll be able to grab one.
inside 1

Inside #2: What to do when it’s cold outside? Go rollerskating! Peanut met a friend at the skating rink one Saturday morning. The rink offers a two-hour session for skaters nine years old and under every Saturday morning.
inside 2

Inside #3: For my birthday, The Golfer sent me a bit of the outside to brighten my inside. These lovely tulips have been the inspiration for some much-needed creative fun.
inside 3

Inside #4: Entrepreneur also gave me some color to brighten the dreary winter days…and wine to deal with the rest.
birthday carnations

Inside #5: A few weeks ago our church hosted special exhibit of original artwork from a few well-recognized masters; Picasso, Miro, Dali and Chagall just to name drop of few of them. The outside night was cold, but inside was warmed with music, art, wine and appetizers. This one is doing double duty as I’m showing one of Joan Miro’s works…which give us a glimpse of the “inside” workings of his Surrealistic/Expressionistic mind. Sorta a scary place. 🙂
Miro-Constellations 12 copy

Bonus: January was my birthday month and I was thrilled to get a shot of me and the grandbabykins…inside…on the couch.
grandbabykins

So, there’s my inside five for January. Go on over to PJ’s to see what inside activities the others did with their time.

Wisdom from a snowman

snowman quotography 72

Words of Wisdom from a snowman
It’s okay to be a little bit bottom heavy
Don’t get too much sun
Everyone nose carrots are good for you
Be a jolly happy soul
It takes a few extra rolls to make a good midsection
It’s fun to hang out in your front yard
Remember, we’re all a bit flakey
White is always appropriate

Playing Quotography with Kelley at the road goes ever on

Mentally preparing

Trying something new on the playground this year. Songography….where you pair song lyrics with photos. Kathy over at You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out hosts this weekly photo fun. Wanna join in?

This was yesterday, Saturday, January 9, 2016.
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This is today, Sunday, January 10, 2016.
weather 1-10

We went from 50F on Friday to 6F this morning in middle Missouri. A 44 degree drop in 48 hours. 
It’s now time to mentally prepare for the run-away-from-winter vacay.
songography-seagull 72

Mind on a permanent vacation
The ocean is my only medication
Wishing my condition ain’t never gonna go away
~Zac Brown Band, Knee Deep

Linking up with Kathy and others over at Songography and Lisa at Life Through the Lens

Stay warm!

LTTL & Quotography: Mass

quotography-mass72

The magic of Christmas is not in the presents,
but in His presence.
~Unknown

Quotography’s prompt this week is mass. Not being Catholic, the term is a bit foreign to me but I believe its interpretation in today’s culture can be interchanged with a couple of different synonyms.

Celebration of the Eucharist or Holy Communion/Lord’s Supper
A gathering together of Christians for the purpose of worship

Without getting really heavy into semantics, I’m adapting the prompt to be an interpretation of the meaning of that December holiday called Christmas.

Christmas = literally translated to mean Christ’s mass

Christmas is the celebration of the miraculous birth of God’s son, Jesus. The day when God Incarnate came to this world in the most humble, helpless form of a human baby. He was to be raised by earthly parents and experience, first hand, what is means to be human. He was to experience all the pain, suffering and sadness that goes along with our broken world. It is God’s act of pure love that sent Jesus to a dark, sinful, lost world to reconcile humankind back to their creator through the ultimate sacrifice….crucifixion, death and resurrection. A sacrifice Christians observe regularly through the Eucharist/Holy Communion/Lord’s Supper.

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel….For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 7:14, 9:6)

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. (John 3:16-17)

 That’s it. That’s all. Did this happen in the dead of winter on December 25th with snow falling softly against the sky? No. Was there mistletoe and holly garlands? No. Was there gift giving? No. Was there huge celebratory get-togethers? No.

There were, however, scared human parents giving birth to their first child a long ways from home in a room that stabled animals. There were angels appearing on the hillsides announcing the birth…not to the upper class of people in the town and synagogue, but to the most lowly people of that period’s class system…shepherds. There were no grand Christmas trees, decorations or lavish gifts. His presence was the only present for miles around and went largely unnoticed by most people.

This is a present Christians celebrate every year. And we celebrate it alongside a host of traditions that date back to the cultures of the Druids, German and Celtic tribes, Roman mythology and Teutonic nature worship. The bible never mentions the exact month or day of Jesus’ birth. In the 5th century, the Western Church selected a day for the event to be commemorated….coinciding with the Roman feast of the birth of Sol (sun god). It also coincided with the Winter Solstice, an important time of the year for many pagan religions. Coincidence. Not hardly. People of all color, creeds and nationalities combined all these customs and traditions into what we celebrate now as Christmas.

Whether you celebrate Christmas as Christ’s Mass or simply as a winter holiday, perhaps the Grinch said it best.

And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more. 
~Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

My wish for each of you this Christmas is to be filled with the joy and peace of God’s act of pure, unadulterated love for his creation.

Merry Christmas!

Playing along with Quotography and Life Thru the Lens