Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Kitchen Adventure... Challenge... Torture?? Update

I survived my first big freezer cooking day! Though I didn't finish everything on my list, I got alot done! I still need to make zero point soup and cook up more chicken to chop and have on hand. Here's the final list:

Overall, I enjoyed it. Time will tell if it was worth it, but I didn't feel like it was just an absolutely exhausting day. I worked from 10:45ish to 3:45, so five hours. I have 7 dinners in my freezer and a month's (or more) worth of waffles. I plan on doing the other soup today, and the chicken sometime before I go back to work. That should be quite a help in the kitchen for January, but I will let you know how it goes. Now on to the break-down of the day and the lessons I learned!

Step 1: I cleaned out my freezer. We just had some stuff that had been in there way too long and was sooo freezer-burnt. In the door I still had some frozen veggies and meat. Those two bags you see are steak! Yummo! Here is what it looked like to start my day:
Then I moved my bff (my macbook) into the kitchen and put in Julie & Julia (thanks mom!). Having a cooking movie going while you cook really does motivate you! The movie played through twice during my cooking adventure. I think this is why I didnt mind doing the day at all, just me and a movie alone in the kitchen. It was actually kinda relaxing.
I set up my cooling racks and got the waffle mix going. I knew this would be the most high maintance part of the day- the waffles. Every 8 minutes I got the waffles out of the waffle maker and put in 2 more. Total cooked-24.
The waffle station: cheap waffle maker from alid's that i love, big bowl full of mix, timer.
I boiled alot of chicken yesterday! So I had this big platter with paper towels on it to place the chicken until I was ready to chop it. I also use the vacuum sealer to bag anything I can. Tip** Be sure to check how much vacuum seal bag roll you have left before beginning... I ran out.
A shot of the stove. I had fajita chicken going in the back and boiling chicken in the front.
The end result. It actually doesn't look like much, which means I can fit alot more than I thought in there! Everything is labeled and ready to go.
And the cleaned up kitchen. I cleaned as I went so that I would not be completely overwhelmed at the end... Good choice.

If you are wanting to try this:
  • Make sure you have throughly written out a plan... including how many pieces of this meat need to be cooked this way etc. I ended up cooking some chicken that I was planning on not cooking and chopping some I had wanted whole etc. So have a detailed plan.
  • I recommend going BIG. I could have easily doubled several of these with no extra work... lesson learned! So if you are going to do taco meat, do enough for three dinners, etc.
  • Fix your lunch ahead of time and make it something easy to eat. I forgot to eat, and if I had remembered I dont think I would have felt like stopping and fixing something.
  • Keep moving. I didn't feel tired until I stopped moving...
  • Wear comfy supportive shoes. I know I sound like an old lady, but I was barefoot all day and last night my feet hurt sooo bad!
So that's my adventure in "freezer cooking". Have you tried anything new lately??

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Kitchen Adventure... Challenge... Torture??

As I mentioned earlier in the week, I am going to attempt my first "Freezer cooking" day this week. I was planning to start yesterday and spill into today. Due to my house being hit by a hurricane more chaotic and messy over the holidays than expected, I had to spend ALL DAY yesterday cleaning and organizing and folding and planning, yada, yada, yada.

So I am going to give it a shot today. I slept in, so it is starting later than expected. But that sleep was sooo worth it. It was like sleeping in during summer break and having no responsibility whatsoever. Glorious my friends, glorious. Anyhow, here is the way too optimistic goal list:

  1. Whole Wheat Waffles (three batches)
  2. Chicken Noodle Soup
  3. Zero Point Soup
  4. One Dish Chicken Bake*
  5. Taco meat
  6. Fajita Chicken
  7. Hidden Valley Noodles w/ Chicken* (From an ebook)
  8. Honey Hoisin Chicken *
  9. Brown Sugar, soy and Worcestershire pork chops *
* No cooking required today, it is a put all the ingredients together then freeze recipe.

So I am off to try to accomplish some of this. I'll let you know what happens. Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Rekindled Love

This year I have fallen back in love with reading. When I was a kid I was a huge huge reader. I read every Nancy Drew book, every Judy Blume, every Encyclopedia Brown, every Babysitter's Club, and every Sweet Valley High (and middle school and unviersity etc). But as high school and college hit, my reading mainly focused on school related topics. Though I have read some in recent years, I just had a horrible habit of not ever finishing books.

So earlier this year I took the idea from Lindsey to make a Book List for the year. Actually thinking through, prioritizing, and identifying the books I really wanted to read instead of just reading whatever came my way has really helped me stay on track. And having a deadline of when I wanted them read by has motivated me to actually read.

Then I found the "Fall into Reading Challenge". It was at a great time to give me another boost to keep up the reading. And now here I am, in December of 2009, and I have read 14 books so far. I am almost done with 2 others. And I have enjoyed majority of them alot, learned quite a bit from several of them, and disliked just a few.

So the moral of this post? I wanted to give any of you who are wanting to read more (or do anything more for that matter) some steps to take towards making that a reality. These are the things that worked for me:

1. make a list, identifying want you want to read (or do)

2. prioritize that list

3. give yourself a timeline

4. tell someone, or lots of someones, so that you are held accountable

5. put it somewhere you will see it often

6. take the first step to do it

So what is it you really would like to do, for you? Reading is something that I enjoy, something I do simply for me. More often than not today, we fill up all of our time going going going and doing everything for everyone but us. Now I am not saying we should just live selfish lives, because a Christ focused life is a servant focused life. What I am saying is that we have to learn to love ourselves too. And as Biggest Loser always says, "we need to put ourselves back on the list". When we take some time to take care of ourselves, we guard against bitterness towards those we serve and emptiness or a lack of purpose, etc. So pick something that you will do for you today, and see if it blesses those around you. I know for me and mr.pate, this has been very true.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Menu Plan Monday 12/28-1/3

Yay for hopefully being back in a routine! Yay for being in control of what we eat this week! Yay for having the week off so I can remind myself how to grocery shop and cook and eat healthy!

The Holidays, having Charlie for awhile, and Thanksgiving. Those are the things that filled up the last four or five weeks and threw my plan-loving-heart all outta whack. But I think things are slowing down... or at least slowing down to normal, which of course isnt slow!

I am going to be attempting my first "Freezer cooking/baking day/batch cooking/whatever you want to call it" this week. I think Tuesday and Wednesday are going to be the days. Here's for trying! My goal is to have several meals and lots of waffles in the freezer before I go back to work on Monday.

Here's what Ill be trying to make this week:

Monday: Crock Pot Chicken and Dumplings (I have been writing this on the plan and not following through for three weeks now)

Tuesday: Chicken Stir-Fry

Wednesday: Dinner at Dustin's

Thursday: Eat out with my Niece's who are coming to stay!

Friday: Spaghetti

Saturday: Salmon Cakes w/ green beans

Sunday: Leftovers

More on the freezer cooking plan later...

Sunday, December 27, 2009

And the winner is...

I am just disappointed in the level of love and enthusiasm for Christmas movies people! I am all about these, am I the only one? Anyhow,

Erica- Great job! She got 4 correct! And good guess Sarah, but unfortunately you were wrong for me... however I think the quote is in Christmas Carol too. Just not what I was going for.

Regardless of your love for Holiday cheer, here are the answers for those that were wondering:
  1. "Yellows don't stop" ELF
  2. "Excuse me! Can I cut in? I won't take long... I just have to fix this mistake I made.
    "Have cuts for a dollar!"
    "Forget it. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah! Don't forget to tell Santa what a creep you are!" ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS
  3. "He worked really hard, Grandma."
    "So do washing machines." CHRISTMAS VACATION (Ps. Hilarious... one of my fav quotes in the movie)
  4. "I am the Ghost of Christmas Past.
    Long past?
    No, your past." SCROOGE
  5. Hey guys, you seen the place? Pretty good, they must have brought in a professional. I dunno why, but someone's gunning for my job. But look, let's stick together on this. If you get wind of anything, call me on my radio. Channel three, code word is "Santa's got a brand new bag". ELF
  6. "Smiling's my favorite." "Make work your favorite. That's your new favorite." ELF

Why I love This Week!

  • No Work! Well at least no going to my actual "job"... there will be plenty of work to do around here!
  • I will be sleeping in my own bed all week, not random places! After traveling for several days I am super pumped about this!
  • Me and Mr.Pate are going t watch the Proposal on Monday night (I got it for Christmas!) and he hasn't seen it... it was so stinkin hilarious.
  • I am going to attempt my first "freezer cooking" day this week... wish me luck!
  • Hopefully I will have time to sit and reflect on the year and make goals for this next year... this is the plan at least ;)
  • Youth Group on Wednesday- I feel like we haven't met in forever!
  • Gingerbread house decorating on thursday morning with Beck, Cam, and Jeanice. I am pumped bc I miss this event every year, but not this year.
  • My beautiful nieces are coming to stay Thursday thru Saturday!
Why do you love this week?

(Why I love this week comes from Heather's blog, check her out!)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Name that Movie Friday- Christmas style!

Welcome to Name that Movie Friday! Don't know what this is? Find out here!

Merry Christmas!! I pray you are having a blessed day filled with rejoicing over the joys of our Savior's love! Today i am praising Him for coming to earth to die for me, a completely undeserving jerk. And I am praising Him for blessing me with a loving family (both by birth and marriage) and fabulous friends.

For some Holiday entertainment, here are some more Christmas quotes for you to rack your brain over! Remember, there may or may not be multiple quotes from the same movie. Happy guessing!
  1. "Yellows don't stop"
  2. "Excuse me! Can I cut in? I won't take long... I just have to fix this mistake I made.
    "Have cuts for a dollar!"
    "Forget it. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah! Don't forget to tell Santa what a creep you are!"
  3. "He worked really hard, Grandma."
    "So do washing machines."
  4. "I am the Ghost of Christmas Past.
    Long past?
    No, your past."
  5. Hey guys, you seen the place? Pretty good, they must have brought in a professional. I dunno why, but someone's gunning for my job. But look, let's stick together on this. If you get wind of anything, call me on my radio. Channel three, code word is "Santa's got a brand new bag".
  6. "Smiling's my favorite." "Make work your favorite. That's your new favorite."

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Week: Day 5... Decorations!

I love Christmas decorations. Any and all! Today I want to tell you about one decoration in particular that I really love, my "Bride's Tree".
Becky put this tree together for me my first Christmas as a married lady. I love it. Each ornament represents something specific. The tradition of a bride's tree comes from Germany. Here is the only explanation I could find online:
According to the old German tradition, the  tree of a newlywed couple should include  these twelve ornaments to insure blessing  and happiness for their life  together........
An Angel - God's Guidance in the Home  A Rose - Beauty and Affection A Rabbit - Hope and Faith A Teapot - Hospitality A Pine Cone - Motherhood and Fruitfulness A Santa - Unselfishness and Goodwill A House - Shelter and Protection A Fruit Basket - Generosity A Bird - Happiness and Joy A Flower Basket - Good Wishes A Heart - True Love A Fish - Christ's Blessing 

My tree is red with blown-glass ornaments. It came with a little book of explanations- but I didnt really feel like typing it all! ha. I have never memorized what all of the ornaments represent, but the tree reminds me of my engagement and that first Christmas as a married couple. Sweet times indeed. Time flies people!

But now it is your turn, what decorations do you love and why? If you have a blog, write up a post and copy the link below. If you don't have a blog then share your answer in the comment section. What's your favorite?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Week: Day 4... Our Jesse Tree

This year, Mr.Pate and I started the tradition of a Jesse Tree. You can read all about what that is here. Since Christmas is in 2 days, I thought I would let you know how it has gone over.

This is what our tree looked like on November 29th, all ready for us to start our new tradition the next day:

These were our hand-painted ornaments with a picture representing the topic of the day, the scripture reading for the day, and the date on them:

And here is our tree today, almost complete:

(Sorry the picture is so dark) Mr.Pate and I have LOVED this new tradition. Taking time to sit down, read through scripture and a short devotion refocusing our hearts during this season has been such a pleasure. I really think that in the midst of a crazy busy schedule, this habit has calmed up and brought us peace, as only the Lord can.

There were nights that we missed, either because I was out of town, Mr.Pate closed at work or we were just plain too tired to think. But we were able to double and sometimes triple up the next night, and I actually ended up enjoying those "extra dose" nights even more.

I loved looking at our hand-painted ornaments every night too. Usually I am a Christmas ornament snob, but this year the Lord has just filled my heart with a desire to reminisce and make as many memories as possible. Some of the ornaments are really pitiful looking (mostly mine) but some look really good (Mr.Pate drew an amazing wolf and lamb). It is a neat feeling to know we made them with love, and it reminds me of the time we spent together doing it. I am glad we ended up going in this direction.

Basically, I highly recommend everyone do this! Whether you are single and want to do it with a bible study or group of friends, are a married couple, or have kids, I think it is a great tradition to really help you worship Christ and the amazement of his coming! HEre are a few tips or thoughts for those of you thinking of doing it next year:
  • Don't stress over the actual tree or ornaments. When I started thinking about doing it, I envisioned cool natural looking ornaments for each day... but that would have taken more time and more stress. Besides, what we did made it personal. Some people use a drawn tree on the wall and paper ornaments. Just do what works best for the time, it is not about looks!
  • Choose a time format that will work best for you. We chose every night, but didn't stress if we missed a night. Some people may want to do it once a week and just do seven, or do it twice a week etc. The whole point of the tradition is for you and your family or friends to worship... so don't put other's expectations on yourself.
  • Read through the devotional guide (if possible) you are thinking about using before you buy or decide (if you are using one). We have liked some of the things written in ours, and some things are weird. It quotes the strangest version of the bible I have ever read in it too, so thats given us a laugh! Ha! Here is a link to the one we used. And here is a link to a free one that I think looks pretty good too.
  • Put the tree somewhere you will see it all day, so you are reminded in the midst of craziness what it's all about.
So what tradition do you celebrate and love?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Week: Day 3... Hundred Dollar Holiday

Hundred Dollar Holiday- My Take On It

I heard about this book on another blog that was making recommendations of books to read this Christmas. This one immediately sparked my interest. What does this $100 holiday look like? I am totally in! The book was not what I expected, but overall I enjoyed it.

What I liked about the book:
  • It was short and well organized. There were only 3 chapters, so it was easy to know the overall point of each chapter you were reading.
  • It gives a detailed description of the history of how the Christmas celebration came to be and how it evolved into what we all know it as today.
  • You get a very honest look at what Christmas has become.
  • It was a good way to refocus during the holidays.
  • He emphasized homemade gifts and gifts of time, which I thought was a good reminder to get creative.
Things that annoyed me about the book:
  • I thought he would share more about how his family actually celebrates the holiday with only $100, the boundaries they have setup etc. But he didn't and I was disappointed! He basically ignored giving any detail of how they do this. I can see that he doesn't want it to be a "formula" that people follow so he didn't want to give a five step plan or anything. But some of an example would have been nice.
  • He gives way more info about the history than he does about celebrating the holiday for only $100. Maybe he should think about a name change?
I would recommend the book. I thought it was interesting overall and it was a neat perspective to read during the holidays.

Christmas Week: Day 3

I saw this over on Heather's Blog and (of course) had to do it!

My Holiday Survey...

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?

Almost all wrapping paper. I love love love to wrap presents and make them gorgeous! But this year I actually let Mr.Pate help (he is a messy wrapper) so we could be done and not stress.

2. Real tree or artificial?Fake all the way. When I was in high school we tried the real tree a few times but I was just not impressed. It made a mess and the limbs were not strong enough to hold up the ornaments. Plus it is just cheaper.

3. When do you put up the tree?
The day after Thanksgiving!

4. Do you like eggnog?
No no no. gross.

5. Favorite gift received as a child?
Probably the year I got my barbie power wheels or the year I got the american girl trunk and stuff.

6. Do you have a nativity scene?
Kinda. This year we bought this:

which has the 3 main players, so I guess it counts?

7. Hardest person to buy for?
Misty, my sister. 2nd hardest is my Father-in-law

8. Easiest person to buy for?
My nieces.

9. Mail or email Christmas cards?
Neither. I am just bad at "cards" in general.

10. Favorite Christmas movie?
I don't have one fav. But here are some top ones: Elf, Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Prancer, All I want for Christmas, The Polar Express.

11. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
Black Friday. I wish I could start earlier, but all of our families dont figure out what they might like till then.

12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
My dad's crispy bacon on Christmas morning! I cant wait!

13. Clear lights or colored lights on the tree?

14. Favorite Christmas song?
I don't think I can pick one. See this post for my top 27 though! Ha!

15. Travel or stay home at Christmas?
Travel travel travel. We go to Louisville before Christmas and then head to TN on Christmas morning.

16. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer?
Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, Comet, Rudolph... I seriously got all of those without googling! But I apparently left out Vixen, sorry dude.

17. Angel on tree top or star?
Star, which is more natural looking and reminds us of the stable.

18. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?
We do presents with Justin's extended family on his dad's side around lunch on Christmas Eve, then with his mom around dinner Christmas eve, then with his dad that night! Then on Christmas morning with my family and mid-day with my dad's side of the fam. Whew... its exhausting but good.

19. The most annoying thing about this time of year?
It goes by way too fast, and too much time is spent shopping. There just isnt enough time for hot chocolate and a christmas movie each night!

20. What I love most about Christmas
The way everyone gets sweeter and more focused on family. I love getting to see our families! And this year my favorite part has been our Jesse Tree devos.

Ok now its your turn! If you have a blog copy these questions and answer them yourself, then leave the link here in the MckLinky (leave a comment asking for help if you dont know how). If you dont have a blog (Misty, Duke, Julie, whomever else) then leave the answers in the comments!

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Fall into Reading 2009: Wrap Up

Well, Christmas is almost here and that means Fall is a thing of the past. I joined in with Callapidder Days on the "Fall into Reading Challenge" this year, and I am here to share the outcome.

  • Did you finish reading all the books on your fall reading list? If not, why not?
I finished 6 on my original list, and 8 from my altered list (which I am hoping to make 9 this week). I did not finish "TrueFaced" because I am going through it with my youth on a week to week basis, "Treasuring God in our Traditions" because I am slow (but its almost done).

  • Did you stick to your original goals or did you change your list as you went along?
I changed the list because I just found that halfway through I just didnt have the desire to read some of the ones on my list anymore, or I just wanted to read some seasonal ones.

  • What was your favorite book that you read this fall? Least favorite? Why?
Either Life Together or The Giver! Life Together was just a really good spiritual challenge for me. And the Giver is just a great book and a great memory of childhood reading.

My least favorite was "Instructing a Child's Heart". It was boring and I dont like his writing style.

  • Did you discover a new author or genre this fall? Did you love them? Not love them?
I read Julie Powell for the first time and oddly enough liked her writing. So I am planning on reading her new book too.

  • Did you learn something new because of Fall Into Reading 2009 – something about reading, about yourself, or about a topic you read about?
I learned a ton! Since I read a wide assortment of books, I feel I grew in my personal walk with the Lord, in knowledge about parenting techniques, in learning the history of Christmas, etc.

  • What was your favorite thing about the challenge?
That I had a timeline and somewhere to check in at. This helped me stay motivated to read now instead of "later" (which usually turns into never).

Overall, I enjoyed the Challenge alot. I have been blessed by most of the books I have read and just really enjoyed reading again. Here is the final tally on the books I read and a link to my book review (if I did one).

1. Hundred Dollar Christmas - I saw this recommended on a blog recently and my curiosity was peaked. It is a short book about one families experiences during the holidays once they set a $100 budget. [Book review coming soon]

2. Treasuring our Traditions- I wanted to read this last year, but never got around to it. She talks about celebrating traditions as a family all year, and then also on the Holidays. [Hopefully finishing this right before Christmas]

3. The Fuel and the Flame- This is one of my favorite books! I am rereading it again with my dgroup this semester, and it is a great reminder to stay passionate about my Lord. [No book review]

4. TruFaced- Our high school youth small group is going through this right now, and boy is it amazing. Mr.Pate read this book in a counseling class at seminary and loved what it taught. This book focuses on living in community and dealing with sin. It teaches against putting on masks and hiding from God and each other, and it encourages learning to live in God's grace. It encourages knowing that we cant work on our sin and then come to God, instead we must just come as we are to God and work with Him on our sin. You will hear more later on this one, but so far i highly recommend it! [Still going thru it]

5.Julie & Julia by Julie Powell: This is the book that the recent movie Julie and Julia is based on. I have started it and can tell you it is way different than the movie and pretty crude at parts, but overall I am liking the point. [Book review found here]

6.The Duggars: 20 and Counting! by Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar:This is a book the Duggars wrote to share their family philosophies and everyday habits etc. I dont have cable, so I dont watch the show but I am intrigued. [Book Review found here]

7. Teach them Diligently by Lou Priolo: Saw this book on Lindsey at Passionate Homemaking's booklist and wanted to read it for myself. I think it will be helpful for when I have kids but also now with my sunday school class etc. [Book Review found here]

8. Instructing a Child's Heart by Tedd and Margy Tripp: mr.pate and I took a class based on one of Tripp's other books and loved it. So if the library can get it on interlibrary loan then this one is in. [Book Review found here]

9. Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer:currently reading this book and totally loving it! it is a hard read, but so worth it. anyone who really wants to improve in how they love the people around them, i would suggest this book! [Book review found here]

10. The Giver by Lois Lowry: My childhood favorite, I figured it was a good time to revisit it! [Book Review found here]

You can see how others did and what they enjoyed here.

Whewww... that was alot of hyperlinking action going on. I am going to go rest the fingers by watching some "Say Yes to the Dress Now!"

Christmas Week: Day 2... 27

27: Christmas Songs I love

  1. Tennessee Christmas by Amy Grant: Duh! I am a TN girl and grew up loving this song. It just takes me back to all of my childhood Christmas's.
  2. All I want for Christmas is You by Mariah Carey: Who doesn't love this song?
  3. Mary Did You Know: I love the way this song talks about Christ... "the blind will see the deaf will hear the dead will live again". Praise Him!
  4. Breath of Heaven
  5. The Chipmunk Song: Cracks me up! I sing it all year in my best impersonation, which Mr.Pate says is horrid.
  6. Winter Wonderland: So dreamy.
  7. Rockin around the Christmas Tree: I want to be at a party with this blaring just like in Home Alone, only with real people.
  8. It's Beginning to Look alot like Christmas: It will just put you in the mood.
  9. Labour of Love on the Behold the Lamb of God cd: This is my new favorite this year. What a neat perspective on that night. I love this way it starts: "it was not a silent night, there was blood on the ground"
  10. The Christmas Song: "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire"... I have never seen chestnuts roasting on an open fire, but this song just makes you feel all warm and cozy.
  11. Have yourself a Merry Christmas: My fav version is the one on the red WOW cd. Upbeat and makes you want to dance.
  12. Gather Round,Ye Children, Come: Can you tell I have gotten into the Behold the Lamb of God cd? Love this song, just makes me praise the Lord for the crazy love of the Gospel.
  13. Santa Baby: Fun and flirty. When I was young I loved going to my sister's chorus shows and hearing this!
  14. Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) by Mariah Carey: Again, upbeat and fun (even though she is asking him to come home so I guess its sad?).
  15. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays by NSync: I love the NSync Christmas cd and this song is my fav off of it.
  16. Jingle Bell Rock: Classic.
  17. Christmas Shoes: Makes me cry every time.
  18. I need a Silent night by Amy Grant: This is also a new fav. It talks about how she needs a silent night, a holy night, instead of the craziness that Christmas can be today with shopping and events etc.
  19. We Three Kings: This has always been one of my fav Christmas hymns.
  20. Let it Snow!: Being someone who rarely sees a good snow, it is a romantic idea, this song.
  21. O Holy Night: Beautiful.
  22. Little Drummer Boy: Its different sounding and I love that.
  23. It's the most Wonderful Time of the Year: Yes it is!
  24. Baby, It's Cold Outside
  25. Christmas in Hollis by Run DMC: Oh yeah, ghetto style!
  26. Do You Hear What I Hear
  27. Passover Us by Andrew Peterson: What a great look at how the Old Testament proclaimed the coming of Christ.
Now if you you don't have any Christmas music to listen to this season, here is a link to help you out:

My Christmas playlist at

So what is your favorite Christmas Song??

And the winner is...

Well I was putting this off, hoping more of you would take a stab at some of these holiday movies, but apparently you aren't Christmas movie peps? Or you are just ignoring me... either way, thanks alot people! Ha. There is no offical winner this week, but both Angel and Sarah got some right- so way to go girls! The answers are:

  1. "... if you rub the bunyun on my foot, I'll give you a whole quarter and I'll give a quarter to Audrey too." Christmas Vacation (gross by the way!)
  2. Whoa, Dad! You're flying!
    It's okay, I'm used to it. I lived through the '60s.The Santa Claus
  3. "You forgot the white chocolate!
    They didn't have any.
    Did you talk to Rex?
    Who's Rex?
    The butcher. odd as it sounds, I didn't think to ask the butcher where the chocolate was!" Christmas with the Cranks
  4. "Of course you're not an elf. You're six-foot-three and had a beard since you were fifteen." Elf
  5. Here we are. Denny's. Always open.
    I don't wanna eat here.
    What are you talking about? Everybody likes Denny's, it's an American institution. The Santa Claus
  6. Being an apple farmer may not be a job full of glamour but there is still satisfaction to be had with it.Prancer (have you ever seen it? I love it!)
  7. "Oh, you're back.
    "This time we really need to talk. Can I use the lap?" All I want for Christmas (one of my fav Christmas movies, it was never a big hit but I just love it. go rent it this week people!)
  8. "The thing about trains... it doesn't matter where they're going. What matters is deciding to get on." The Polar Express
What are your fav holiday movies?

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Week: Day 1

Welcome to Christmas Week at Patelife! Christmas is a week from today already, it sure did get here fast. I want to invite all of you to take a few minutes this week and join me in reflecting on the "reason for the season", enjoying the celebrations and traditions, and sharing ideas & tips with one another.

Christmas Week: Day 1
What the heck "the Twelve Days of Christmas" is all about

There is one Christmas Carol that has always baffled me.

What in the world do leaping lords, French hens,

swimming swans, and especially the partridge who won't come out

of the pear tree have to do with Christmas?

This week, I found out.

From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were

not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone

during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.

It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning

plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each

element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality

which the children could remember.

-The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.

-Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.

-Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.

-The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.

-The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.

-The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.

-Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit--Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy.

-The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.

-Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit--Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness,

Gentleness, and Self Control.

-The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.

-The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.

-The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.

So there is your history for today. This knowledge was shared with me and I found it interesting and enlightening and now I know how that strange song became a Christmas pass it on if you wish.'

Merry (Twelve Days of) Christmas Everyone

** This was a forward I received this week, and I enjoyed it so much I thought I would share it with you. I will never sing the 12 days of Christmas with major confusion again!