I don't gamble, smoke, or drink, at least not alcoholic, but I love my sweet tea! I consider it an indulgence, but Dear Reader, it's not the tea, it's about something very precious, a simple pleasure.
Recently, Tom and I went to a wedding for one of our absolutely favorite families. No matter what the event, three generations of women make everyone feel welcome and show them a great time!
Our younger family friend was getting married. The wedding was tender and sweet, but it was what happened afterwards that became a holy moment.
I like think of myself as efficient, a good steward of time and resources. Sounds good, doesn't it? Actually, I just need a good reason for doing things around the house. You know, like cleaning house or painting a room.
Tom did a terrific job painting the dining room, entry, and hall. He was patient and flexible getting old and new wall art arranged. But it took a surprise celebration for him to motivate me to get the kitchen painted and redecorated.
Manipulative. Manipulative? Really? Have they really looked at this crazy family tree? The Borgias don't have much over us. And can we say Machiavelli's The Prince?
Dear Reader, as life takes a breath and slows down for a minute, I'd like to pick your brain. What are some of the rituals and traditions your family observes during Advent and Christmas?
One tradition Tom brought to our family was the hanging of Christmas stockings, whether we had a fireplace or not. It may seem silly, but our adult children still have stockings "hung by the chimney with care."
Don't worry, Dear Reader, I'm not stumbling into the minefield of money topics. My friend, Jeanne, has been doing a series about choices, and she got me thinking.
With the new year creeping around the corner, I'd like to share one of our investments that can bring major dividends.
For the first five years or so, after we moved "up north" holidays weren't exactly fun. No yard full of laughing cousins. No kitchen bubbling over with delicious smells and mama stories.
It was sad and lonesome.
Then a couple at our church invited us to spend Thanksgiving with them. That was the beginning.
Lord, did I hear you right? Do you have any idea what my family, my friends will say if I marry her?
What have I done that you would punish me so?
“Go, marry a prostitute who has had children as a result of her prostitution. Do this because the people in this country have acted like prostitutes—they have been unfaithful to the Lord.”
So, here we are, still doing rehab for the knee replacement a few weeks ago. I gotta tell you, Dear Reader, I'm one blessed woman! And it's definitely undeserved grace.
Mama wanted to be a nurse in the worst way as a young woman. Just because nursing school didn't work out for her, that didn't stop Mama from nursing any and everybody who was sick or injured, including me.
I'll admit I have my share of unreasonable fears: heights, speed, snakes, just to name a few. I carry my share of emotional baggage, too, that leads to fears like fear of failure. Who among us is free of faults?
In light of my fears and failures, I wonder if God keeps checklists for our perfect mates. If He does, He certainly went out of His way to ensure I married the man perfectly suited to me. I love Tom to absolute distraction; he brings out the best in me.Then there are other times . . .
When Tom, James, and I took a tour of Western Europe several years ago, Mary said her dad must be the only person to come back thinner. French pastries and Italian delicacies held no charms for Tom. Thank goodness we'd taken along granola bars.
I'm not saying Tom's a finicky eater. but he's afraid to try anything new. Okay, almost anything. And Dear Reader, sometimes it drives me a little crazy.
For years, it seemed like shortly after we found a restaurant we liked, it closed, burn to the ground, or was ruined by flood. I'm not joking. If that wasn't bad enough, Tom seemed mired in mourning their losses instead of discovering new restaurants we might like.
And don't even get me started on tv shows or clothes. If there's a John Wayne western, MacGyver, or M.A.S.H. on, he's there. And probably wearing the same thing he did when they originally came out decades ago.
Foods, restaurants, tv shows, clothing styles . . . Seriously, sometimes I think I married a coward. And then I remember.
I remember how brave he's been through the losses of children, siblings, parents, friends, letting me scream and bawl until I was spent, mindless of his grief.
I think about the times he's followed me into crazy: going back to college when we could barely pay our bills; uprooting our family to move across the state to follow my dream; believing in my calling enough to invest time and money into my journey.
A new dessert, a different style of shirt, oh Dear Reader, how petty my heart and mind are sometimes. And how ungrateful!
I frequently tell Tom that I wouldn't want to be married to me, and it's true. This frail flesh is so selfish and demanding. But Tom loves me anyway, and perhaps that's the bravest thing he's ever done.
May God who gives patience, steadiness, and encouragement help you to live in complete harmony with each other—each with the attitude of Christ toward the other.
Dear Reader, Tom's love for me is the second best gift he's given me. The absolute best gift is the model of unconditional love that gives me a glimpse of the Father's love for each of us.
Hi, my name is Alice. A Way with Words is about sharing faith,
fun, & encouragement. Thanks for stopping by! I hope you find a little something to take