small pieces of joy

pieces of joy in each day


on December 1, 2010

Happy Belated Thanksgiving! (And apparently happy beginning of winter…what is all this white fluff on the ground?)

It has been a crazy past week which has resulted in no time for blogging until now. This break has been such a whirlwind filled with 26 hours in a car, seeing friends and small children, catching up with family, and being thankful for the many things in my life. This is my attempt to share some of the small things I’ve encountered over the past week.

ST1: sunset. We were driving to Kansas last Tuesday night and amidst my loud singing and Jonathan’s expert driving I noticed how beautiful the sunset was. I kept admiring how perfect it was and thinking about what I taught 4th graders a few weeks ago, how the Earth makes one rotation around its axis in 24 hours. It’s amazing how that works and not only that, but it’s visually pleasing, especially when you’re out in the middle of nowhere.

ST2: the Hail Mary. My husband and I prayed the rosary during the first hour of our trip. Normally I don’t like this prayer because I’ve never felt much for it and it hasn’t been a huge part of my life. My husband, however, prays it every day. We have been working on making it a part of our prayer routine, so I thought what better time than while we’re in the car for HOURS. What struck me this time was the simple but beautiful prayer that is repeated the most: the Hail Mary.

Hail Mary, Fully of Grace
The Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women,
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us sinners, now, and at the hour of our death.

This is not a prayer TO Mary, it is a prayer ASKING her to pray for US. As I kept repeating the prayer I realized that asking the mother of God to pray for us is one of the most powerful things, ever! She was the holiest person I know, so she has to pull some weight with her Son. Of course I talk to Jesus too, but it never hurts to have another cheerleader for my side!


The Rosary I made, hanging from my car's rear view mirror.

ST3: Thanksgiving decorations. The picture below shows the beautiful table decorations my Aunt made. Each dinner we went to this year had beautiful festive tablecloths and other fall like decorations. I really like the comfortable feeling I get when I walk into a house around Thanksgiving. There was much laughter and meals were delicious, too!

And this is an example of the napkins up close.

Dinner at Mama’s House!

ST4: Family jokes. My mom’s side of the family is notorious for saying strange things around the dinner table. This Thanksgiving was no exception. And the best part is when things get a little crazy, someone is bound to say, “these mashed potatoes are so creamy”. Name that movie.

ST5: North Pole Radio. The radio station here that plays Christmas music calls itself North Pole Radio. Not only do they play a great variety of Christmas favorites, they get points for creativity!

ST6: hugs from small children. I started my tutoring job on Monday and it has been so great. The second day I walked into the school and one of my 1st graders ran up to me and gave me a huge hug. I only met her the day before! And then after tutoring I turned a corner in the hallway only to see one of my kindergartners in full sprint down the hall. He gave me a huge hug and then continued his sprint. I am loving these kids! I’ve learned that the smaller kids are a little easier to motivate than my middle schoolers were. We’ll see if that continues, however.

ST7: 6 people sleeping in one room. That’s how we do it at my husband’s grandma’s house and it is awesome. I loved spending Thanksgiving sharing a room with my new sisters and cousins. One of the many things I am thankful for! Here is a picture of us from 2 years ago at Christmas to give you an idea of the sleeping arrangements!

ST8: Family friends. We were fortunate enough to split up our trip on the way home and stay with some family friends Sunday night. It was so wonderful that these people opened up their home to us and we’re not related! We sat and talked for a few hours about life before turning in. It was so nice to feel so welcome. I hope my husband and I are that hospitable someday!

ST9: gathering of old friends. I was able to see a good number of my friends from KC over break, and it was fantastic. I was very nostalgic seeing my friends from KSU mesh with some friends from high school and then my young adult life, and some of them with kids and some expecting soon. It was just a warm and happy time for me. Of course it made me sad that I’m away from it all, but I also saw the blessing they all have been to me! Thank you, friends!

Of course there were many more small things in the past week, but I know some people barely have enough time to read what I post daily! Here’s to a wonderful amazing Thanksgiving and the beginning of a fruitful Advent season!


One response to “snow?!?

  1. Keith says:

    I know the movie, so I won’t ruin it for others. I like the Hail Mary so much. Fr. Keith talked about how the first four lines are taken from the bible from various people greeting her, so we great her the same way. And like you said, it’s not praying TO her, it is asking her to pray for us like we would ask anyone else to pray for us.

    The Holiday station in Manhattan is really lame. I have only heard 3 songs I Like/recognize. I think play all the holiday song leftovers.


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