Christmas eve … lessons learned

Dear friends
A quick update.  We tried… but after a few trips to town and back, some wet tears, and some loud words, Daur1 stated:

I hate this!  I don’t like Christmas time!!

And at that point I realised that my own weakness,  laziness, fear and probably some pride, meaning I fail to adequately prepare was affecting those closest to me, in a very negative way.  So, I, we, are going to come up with a simple Christmas plan – month by month – so that by Son2’s birthday at end of November,  we are ready to enjoy the season.  I’m feeling optimistic that now the children are older, we can do this, all together, and it won’t be so painful!

Spirits were revived this evening as Mum, me!, climbed into the loft to bring down the tree and decorations.  And I did remember to take out the meat this morning to defrost for tomorrow!!  I hope you have a lovely, peaceful, Christmas Day!! #ASaviorIsBorn #HeIsTheGift #ShareTheGift

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Christmas eve…

Dear friends
OK.  The weekend before Christmas is over – school finished, ward Christmas party, wedding anniversary, and Son2, our youngest, was baptised. And yesterday, I finished work until the New Year and my dear husband had our boiler serviced (so at least we should stay warm!).  And what else this week…, dinner for the missionaries and new friends and Daur2 had her ears pierced, once each, in the lobe – looking pretty! 

So now we have less than 24 hours to buy & wrap gifts for each other, decorate the house and tree (oh, take it down from the loft first and tidy the front room,  aka my dear husband’s study), deliver cards to neighbours and nearby family.  Alot can be done in 24 hours with 6 pairs of hands and 6 pairs of feet.  It’s 0745h, I think I need to get some of them moving…  I remind myself:

Jesus is the reason for the season

And refuse to feel pressure, stress, anxiety, for more than 24 hours! We’re going to enjoy the day preparing together 🙂 #ASaviorIsBorn #HeIsTheGift #ShareTheGift.  I wish you all a peaceful,  family, friendly, Christmas  🙂 … did I just hear sleigh bells?…

the sky… a quick snap

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17 Dec 2015 - view over the garden

Dear friends
A very pink sky this morning over our garden and weather forecast states temperatures could reach 16 degrees Celsius!!  From 3 Nephi 12 v45 (or Matthew 5 v45 – yes, Jesus teaches the same things to all people!)

That ye may be the children of your Father who is in heaven; for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good.

a thought on work

Dear friends

The scaffolding has been coming down on one of my projects, we’ve been on site about 18 months, with another 3 months or so left, and finally we can appreciate what legacy we will leave for the city. It’s quite exciting – I’ll post photos in a different post.

Leaving site last week I felt a renewed excitement, for my current job. And for projects I’m currently working on, at design stage.  I also began thinking on why I initially wanted to work on public sector projects, like schools.  Because with public projects, I feel a responsibility to design and deliver the best for the whole community. The challenge is its funded by the community, by government funding, from our taxes.

Meanwhile, I submitted the planning application for a new school building on the east side of town.  This is a little controversial with locals since it’s proposed on a disused playing field used, by some locals, as a dog toilet and bus shortcut through the broken fence.  I feel we’ve given some valid reasons why it should be developed for the school, which is expanding.  We’ll see if the planning authority agrees in a few months. 

We’re having an architectural team management meeting in Starbucks or Costa, or similar!  Three of us 🙂  it’ll be a welcome respite with my two senior colleagues that I’ve been with for over 8 years…  (Later…) we had our meeting (Costa) and I felt decidedly guilty as our team leader said he saw the team moving forward with us three… that was not the time to reveal I’d updated my CV and am looking for a new job…

a Christmas message

The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has released a 2015 Christmas message:

We find the real joy of Christmas when we make the Savior the focus of the season. We can keep Him in our thoughts and in our lives as we go about the work He would have us perform here on earth. At this time, particularly, let us follow His example as we love and serve our fellowmen.

Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting self and finding time for others. It is peace because we have found peace in the Savior’s teachings. It is the time we realize most deeply that the more love is expended, the more there is of it for others.

As the Christmas season envelops us with all its glory, may we, as did the Wise Men, seek a bright, particular star to guide us to our Christmas opportunity in service to our fellowman. May we all make the journey to Bethlehem in spirit, taking with us a tender, caring heart as our gift to the Savior. And may one and all have a joy-filled Christmas.

I encourage you to check out this tag on social media #ASaviorIsBorn. I love being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 🙂

inside church

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Dear friends
This is my current view. It’s early morning, at the chapel, I’m waiting for Daur1, and yes, those are my sock clad feet to the bottom right of photo. 
I’m reading the Book of Mormon (1 Nephi 13 verse 1):

Look! And I looked and beheld many nations and kingdoms…

And I looked around to ponder. And my mind cast back to when I first entered this building nearly 30 years ago, one spring morning for church.  It looks a little different – back then the walls were brick internally. But the feeling was the same. A feeling that I was home, where I should be. 🙂
And the beautiful paintings always remind me who I’m following.  I love our buildings, so simple and functional on every level.  When I visited St Vincent (in the Caribbean) it was great to see a lovely two storey building reflecting local stone materials, responding to the terrain (a hill and that’s why it was two storey).  And to know that our tithes are used for these. 🙂

I’ll take a few more photos (I need to slip on my shoes…) for those of you that have not seen the inside of a LDS church building. Enjoy! 🙂

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