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29 December 2015


thankful for this house-full.


the kind of day we wait for, sunny and bright and cool and clear and a hoody feels just right, AND the sunflowers are still in bloom in December.


"Always winter and never Christmas; 
think of that!"
"How awful!" said Lucy.

from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

26 December 2015


DPP25- "I praise you, Jesus, that YOU are the long-time-promised and much-longed-for-Christ--- the Messiah. We're to look for no other, for in you every promise of God finds its fulfillment, it's unequivocal "Yes!"
- "A Prayer About Jesus," in Everyday Prayers by Scotty Smith


dpp 24- fresh cranberry sauce

24 December 2015


DPP23- in my 'hood on the way home from grocery shopping...

My prayer for this particular Advent season is quite simple, Lord Jesus. Please reveal moreand more of your glory and grace to my heart… that I might bow quicker and lower before, you, my majestic and merciful King. Open the eyes of my heart a bit wider to behold the astonishing hope to which you have called me in the gospel. Deepen my adoration of you, Lord Jesus… and loosen my grip on my so-called treasures. So very Amen, I pray, in your most wise and worthy name.
- "A Prayer About Christmas Wisdom" by Scotty Smith

23 December 2015


DPP22- and on this day, finally, everything slowed down.

22 December 2015


DPP21- and on the fourth day before Christmas, the family said, "let there be light." And the mom saw it and it was good.

21 December 2015


DPP20- making the post-caroling hot chocolate.

20 December 2015


DPP19- It was a beautiful morning, but the message of the cross of Christ even more so...

19 December 2015


DPP18- the Christmas program at Instituto Isaias 55, the school for the deaf in Reynosa, MX. My heart is full.

18 December 2015


DPP17- our evening Advent devotional reading.

"As it turns out, the point of Christmas isn’t to make it perfect. It’s that we deeply need Christ’s redemption, so that even the weary world can rejoice. Jesus sees our brokenness, and He comes to redeem us, bind up every wound, and wipe away every tear. Thanks be to God!"
- from SheReadsTruth, "Jesus Is The Better Boaz," by Rebecca Faires


DPP16- I think that maybe my lunch was better than yours...


DPP15- 1030pm and I have not taken one single photo today and OH LOOK! my girls are playing a game!


DPP14- The day we've been waiting on! I showed great restraint and only took two...

14 December 2015


DPP13- Christmas tree re-lit and re-decorated.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel. 
- "O Come, O Come Emmanuel," Thomas Helmore, 1851.

13 December 2015


DPP12- the kitchen elves were busy today.

12 December 2015


DPP11- But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may exult in you.
- Psalm 5:11 (ESV)

10 December 2015


DPP10- How these ladies make me smile! We celebrated a new house with praise and son and tamales and tres leeches and a piñata and MUCH thanksgiving.

The house started as a dream. Really, not even that. Tim remembers when Isaac suggested living in a room basically a size of a closet in the outbuilding of the mission church. His wife (and me too) quickly dismissed that idea. But then we did some research and learned more. Dreams became a vision for the future, and a vision became a plan, and a plan became hope, and hope is now reality. 

We should probably count how many people worked on this house. It was quite a few. That first team who came down from Maryland and encouraged us and twisted wires and tied rebar so we could pour a foundation... The next group also from Maryland- they laid block and mixed and mixed and mixed cement. And then the teams from Nebraska and San Antonio who patiently persevered through flat tires and blown tires and border inspections and hot days to lay tile and stucco walls and paint and paint. Our Mexican foremen who treated us as apprentice crew. The pastors who rolled up their sleeves to join us. The church members who gave more to the project than we did. The New Living Translation of 1 Corinthians 12:27 says, "All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it." We needed every single one of you.

And as each of those teams loved the church through their labors, they also loved the church through their words. After construction in the mornings, they would participate in Vacation Bible School activities in the late afternoon. Their puppets told the stories of the Bible and of our hope in the life and death and resurrection and ascension of Jesus. They loved on kids with zeal. They ran with kids with balls and hoops and water balloons and they played soccer on the dustiest of Mexican canchas. They built a house, but they also built trust. Tonight as we celebrated, members still remembered names and silliness and faithfulness. We rejoice together.

We are excited for the future in Colonia Expo del Sur. We are excited for Isaac and Marilyn to be in the neighborhood of Misión Emmanuel. We are excited for Misión Emmanuel to have Isaac and Marilyn in the neighborhood. And we are excited to see what our Lord has next for this body. 


DPP 9- We three Kings of Orient are...

08 December 2015


DPP8- Oh citrus season, how I love you. You tangy pink grapefruits. You juicy oranges. You like-paper-to-peel, like-candy-to-eat, sweet & bright Cutie mandarins, too good to wait until I get home...


dpp7- a two-handed, almost two-hour, coffee afternoon.

me: "This might be the most photogenic thing that happens today. Can I take your picture?"
my friend, almost apologetically, as if to explain: "She's in a challenge..."

Not so easy to be my friend in December... :-)

06 December 2015


DPP6- an after lunch stroll through El Mercado, San Antonio.


DPP5- when the newly 19 year old gets a record player for her birthday, but mom is the only one who knows how to make it work...
(smile. remembering the Disney Read-A-Long 45's, my first "real" album- the soundtrack from Grease, Journey Escape... Her's is Beach Boys Endless Summer.)

04 December 2015


dpp4: afternoon commute- waiting to cross at the US/MX border.

03 December 2015


DPP3- oh he is a patient one...

02 December 2015


DPP2- morning stop at the panadería for conchas.

01 December 2015


DPP1- Pinterest in progress...

(and all in all, the final outcome was a winner. Except for the glitter that is now everywhere. "Mom, you have glitter on your face..." I have glitter across my forward where I push back my bangs. I have glitter where I itch my nose. I have glitter on my bigote. But the wreath... a winner.)


for ladies with warm hearts even in chilly rooms,
for language that transcends ordinary limitations,
for boys running around and in and out like boys should,
for friends who serve well (and love my family well),
for safety when we doubt,
for a month of blessing,
for His steadfast lovingkindness,
for hope that does not disappoint.