Monday, December 11, 2006

This weekend felt like it was over before it even started. I was greeted when I got home on Friday by a package. I love packages, especially when I haven’t ordered anything recently and thus know it’s a surprise. The package was from Barnes & Noble and included two gift-wrapped surprises! Fun! It took me about five minutes to figure out who it was from, and the giver made it all the more of a special gift. Of the two gifts, the one I’m looking forward to reading the most is The Call by Os Guinness.

Then I had a yummy dinner (and white chocolate bread pudding) with Ozzy and his parents, and afterwards I made peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips (since I ruined the crust I made for my pumpkin chiffon pie):

Saturday I went to Walden Pond, or at least, my family’s version of it. My uncle has a cabin that’s practically in the middle of nowhere with two ponds and lots of woods, and we have our family get-togethers there. It was fantastic. Saturday evening I forced myself to do some shopping. Not the best timing ever, but once I get started, I don’t mind shopping so much.

Sunday was lovely with church, lunch with two friends I hadn't seen in weeks, and a two-hour nap.

Some of my random weekend thoughts:

Troops: I think it would be really hard to be in Iraq during the holidays. And I’m sure it’s hard for the families too. I ran across this link on a blog the other day. It matches you with a solider who doesn’t have a family or regular correspondents, and you write him/her every week and send care packages. A lady in my office did it last year, and she said her solider was able to e-mail her.

Christmas cards: I’ve been impressed with how early people are getting their cards out. Am I the only person who writes something besides her name and “Merry Christmas” on Christmas cards? Despite its huge selection, Target only had two of what I consider non-secular cards. Unfortunately they were both embossed with gold and rather unappealing. I ended up having to go to a Christian bookstore this year to find cards that referenced why we celebrate Christmas (or at least in theory why we do). I had never been to a Lifeway before, but it had some pretty neat stuff.

Adopting a Child: I adopted a little girl for Christmas, meaning that I buy her Christmas gifts. I only write about this because I was surprised by how much more enjoyable this shopping was in comparison to my other Christmas shopping. Even though I love shopping for my nieces, this was more fun. I think it’s because I know my nieces have more than they could ever want or need, and in buying this little girl things, I felt like I was giving a child something she actually needed rather than another toy that she’ll pile up in her toy box and forget the next day.

Church: As a result of traveling a lot the last two months as well as general malaise (i.e. wanting to sleep all day long) that seems to accompany the time change (SAD), I’ve not attended church in quite some time. So yesterday I attended church with a friend. It’s a community church that meets in a local coffeehouse (that isn’t open on Sundays). It was so different than the church I’ve been attending the last two years. The biggest difference was how friendly everyone was and how I met people and actually had conversations. At the last church I attended, I would slip in the door before the service began and leave when it ended, often without talking to a single person. I often thought that I should make the effort to speak to people, but the church environment did not facilitate that at all. In fact, I spoke with a friend who attends that church, and she told me that she didn’t like it when people tried to talk to her and preferred to just be left alone. I guess different strokes for different folks.

9 more working days until I’m off for Christmas!!!


e.b. said...

I "adopted" a solider in 6th grade, during the Kuwait invasion. I was the only one in my class who got a response. It was a nice feeling and I did not think about doing it again. Thanks for the tip.

Accidentally Me said...

Are we going to find out who sent you the package?

Those are two extremely thoughtful things to do at this time of year. You will make the little girl a lot happier just for caring that for giving her something. Same goes for the soldiers, too.

Ella said...

Dinner with Ozzy and his parents??? First a trip with Ozzy and now this? I don't care how much you deny this, but there is something going on here.... ;)

My small group adopted a family last year and it was just wonderful to see how much the appreciated things that we take for granted. Like just a pair of shoes. I had the best time just wrapping all the gifts!

Ally said...

e.b.: I loved having penpals in middle school. I wonder if classes still do that.

AM: The package was from Jeff, a fellow blogger, who I've befriended. He's been a great source of Godly guidance over the last 9 months or so.

Ella: Oz's parents and I actually discussed putting up a profile for him on, but he refuses to let us. His parents even offered to pay for it! I guess I'll have to wait for Aaron to start online dating for my dating entertainment. As for gift wrapping, I wish you were here to wrap mine. I'm not good at all at that chore.

Jeff Price said...

I'm sure your gifts to that little girl will make quite the impact! Did you adopt her through an organization?

Thanks for the reminder that we need to care for the brave men and women protecting our freedom. Their sacrifice is especially felt during this time of year and our gratitude should be equal the magnitude of that sacrifice.

Aaron said...

Yes, classroom penpals are still alive. I do this:

Ally, you're going to be so disappointed when the first gal I meet dating online is so smitten with me that I'll have nothing left to write about. :D

Anonymous said...

Allison, I wish you could put a few pictures of "Walden's Pond" on your post. All this Christmas shopping is very stressful for some of us and I feel pictures of the lake and surroundings would be soothing. DR. RJJ

Ally said...

Aaron: I'm glad to know that penpals still exist, although Flat Stanleys sound kind of complicated. I spent about 7 minutes trying to figure it out.

Wouldn't your vision of online dating be wonderful? I hope your prediction comes true (despite the loss of entertainment)!

Dr. RJJ: That's a wonderful idea, although I somehow suspect you're doing very little shopping:) I'll try to post some pics tonight.

ella w. said...

Ally/Aaron: I met someone on-line and still find plenty of things to blog about!

Aaron said...

Ella: I'm sure you have a more interesting life, too. :D