I know I haven't been around this week. I'm not in a funk or anything, but it has just felt like there's nothing new going on that's of any interest and it's not feeling like it's going to get any better on that front any time soon. PA keeps "suggesting" restrictions to try and curb Covid, which is running rampant here. Seriously. We are supposed to be one of the worst states new case-wise right now and they are already making noises about restricting Christmas gatherings even more than they did for Thanksgiving.
All that said, it's more important than ever to focus on the blessings in life and express gratitude for them. This is one area where science has proved the church has been right all along. You can defeat negative thought patterns by training your brain to look at the positive and practicing gratitude. Brain scans have shown it actually changes brain activity.
This week I am thankful...
** for my sweet grandbabies. They bring so much joy into our lives and it's impossible to feel down looking at their smiles.
** my friend and hair stylist. She did a wonderful job touching up my color, adding a little extra zip for the holidays...and of course, it was fun to chat and catch up.
** the new casino that just opened about 15 minutes from us has a Guy Fieri restaurant in it. I'm following on Facebook and oh. my. goodness. All the dishes they've shown look absolutely scrumptious! I can't wait to go try it out in person.
** we survived the first snow storm of the winter. Tuesday was frigid, windy and dumped about 8 inches of snow on us. The roads and sidewalks were still warm enough that I didn't have to do much shoveling...just a bit around my car and a lot of that was from what I knocked off the car. A couple of days of highs in the 40's should clear most of it away. It was pretty for a day or two. Plenty for me.
** I finished up Beth Moore's study on the apostle Paul yesterday. It was soooo very good and Beth's spin on things helped me to see a lot of things I'd not seen before.
** after several years of only attending a home study group, I went to a church service on Sunday! A couple of girls I went to school with attend and I was to meet them, but when an email went out Sunday morning letting people know that masks were now mandatory, they decided not to go. Not really a surprise since they only started going there a few months back specifically because they didn't have to wear masks. I thought about not going, but decided to be brave and go on my own. I am so glad I did. The man doing the greeting at the door introduced me to his wife when he heard I was new and I talked with her before the service and sat with them during. It was so wonderful to worship in that setting again. I have missed that. Of course, I was paying attention to everything to see if what was taught was biblically sound and it was. I plan to go back this Sunday. I hope it works out that I feel comfortable staying and I'm looking forward to the time when small groups can start back up.
** after all of last weekend's "fun" with a kidney stone, Tim continues to be pain free. Hopeful that means he passed it and that it isn't lurking in his bladder waiting to cause more problems.
** I ordered the next Bible study I'm going to do. It's a verse mapping study of Luke. Has anyone done verse mapping? I've done Precepts and have been trained to teach it to children, but it's not my favorite thing. I only use elements of it. The description I read of verse mapping sounds like something I will like.
** the urge to bake and create that is kicking in. I hadn't done any baking or candy making the last couple of years because of my work schedule. I've tagged several new cookie recipes to try this year and one for Oreo balls (crushed oreos mixed with cream cheese, formed into balls and covered with chocolate). I also plan to go tomorrow and stock up on melting disks in lots of colors and get started on making candy and chocolate covered pretzels. Our daughter may help, but our planned day of baking with my mom probably isn't happening.
** a friend's recommendation for a book about the societal trend of adult children disowning their parents. It's heartbreaking that we've had this happen with our son, but even more heartbreaking that we are not alone in this. It is very wide spread and the incidence of it is growing. Just do a search on Amazon and see how many books on the subject turn up. I suppose it shouldn't be a surprise to those of us who are Christians. We are seeing 2 Timothy 2 playing out. The book arrives tomorrow. I'm looking forward to gaining some insight.
** this season of bright lights, happiness, love, good cheer, and celebration of the Savior's birth. The world needs something good. The world needs a Savior more than ever.
** the continued health of my family and friends.
** for all of you, of course. Your sweet comments, advice, and guidance are a blessing!
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