CLICK HERE FOR FREE BLOGGER TEMPLATES, LINK BUTTONS AND MORE! »

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Such A Special Day

IMG_3366 Today was a very special day.  We had a nice big breakfast of sausage, hash browns, & French toast.  Then at 11:00 we went to the funeral home so the sisters could dress Rufio.  I do NOT like dead bodies, b/c they creep me out so I opted to stay upstairs and wait for Aunt Jeri, who was on her way there.  Mom came up and told me that Rufio’s nails were really grown out and they needed some fingernail polish.  So, I rushed to the closest grocery store and got some and brought it back.  Aunt Jeri & I walked in at the same time.  I decided it was more important that I document these precious moments than being worried about Rufio’s body, so I went in the room and kept my distance and snapped pictures (the sisters wanted me to).  I adore this picture of all their hands.

Just like when I got to help dress my best friend Tara, this was a very special and sacred experience.  The guy at the funeral home that was helping us was beyond wonderful and went out of his way to make things nice.  There happened to be a piano in the room and whey they were done taking care of Rufio, Aunt Jill sat down and played a beautiful arrangement of “I Am A Child Of God” and the tears flowed freely.  I am so touched and humbled to have been allowed to be there and watch as these 4 amazing women served their Mother in such a tender and loving way.

IMG_3412 By this time it was 12:30, so we met the guys for lunch at Joe Vera’s.  The food was excellent, and we enjoyed being together and talking and laughing.

IMG_5505 After lunch, the sisters needed to go to Uncle Rick’s shop and print off some sheet music for the funeral.  I took the rental car and went up to BYU.  It's a little trippy to take a walk down memory lane and think that I graduated from here 13 years ago!!! I had to come get a mint brownie at the Wilkinson Center for old times sake.  I also stopped by the bookstore and got a few Christmas presents and some BYU earrings for myself.

IMG_5514 Then I walked over to the BYU Creamery on 9th to get some “squeaky cheese” (cheese curd).  I walked back to the visitors parking and drove down to my old dorm room where I lived as a Freshman and then as a Resident’s Assistant.  So many floods of memories came back as I walked around the campus.  I’m thankful for my 4 years at this great college.  I made some life long friends there, and also was able to get an education.

IMG_3415 On my way home I passed Midge’s house and saw Aunt Jeri’s car there, so I stopped to say hi.  Midge’s sister, Mary (the one in the front w/ the snowmen on her blue shirt), had flown in for Rufio’s funeral but she didn’t know the funeral isn’t until Friday so she’ll end up missing it.  She wanted to say hi to the girls.  We had to snap a picture together.

Jana, Christine, Mom, Me, Jill, Jeri
Midge, Mary, Peggy

IMG_3418 Mary wanted a picture of the 4 girls together.  Jana said, “only from the waist up.”  I said, “chest up” and at the same time all 4 girls stood up straight and stuck out their chests.  We laughed SO HARD, b/c that wasn’t what I had meant but they had all done it in unison.  This picture of them just cracking up makes me so happy.

IMG_5520 We came home and just had left overs for dinner and the sisters finalized the funeral program details and then went into Rufio’s apartment to start going through some of her things.  I just edited pics, blogged, and watched TV w/ Uncle Rick & Uncle Keith.  Dad & Nate got back from their day of skiing/snowboarding.

ski Isn’t this view just gorgeous?  I’m so glad that Dad & Uncle Wes were able to do something together that they both love so much.  What a special day!!!

Monday, December 15, 2014

A Tender Mercy In The Form Of A Purple Butterfly Window Decal

IMG_5457 This was a good week to be in Utah, b/c Grandpa Johnson went in for hip surgery this morning.  Dad was able to go over to his house last night and give him a blessing w/ his home teachers.  Then he took him to the surgical center at 5:30 am.

IMG_5460 It was cloudy and we couldn’t see the mountains yesterday, but when I got up this morning this was my view!  I just LOVE the snow covered mountains against the bright blue sky.  There are so many things I miss about Utah, and these mountains are for sure one of them.

IMG_5467 We had breakfast and then the sisters figured out what they wanted to say in Rufio’s obituary.  I typed it up on my computer while they dictated what they wanted it to say.  We finally got it just right and I emailed it off w/ a pic of Rufio to the mortuary.

Jana was cleaning out her truck so we could ride down to the funeral home together and she found this purple butterfly window decal.  There is a neat story that goes along with it.  Jana had told Grandma Ruth before she died, that every time she saw a butterfly or something purple that she would think of Rufio.  Purple & butterflies have always been Rufio’s “thing.”  So, for Jana to randomly find this on the floor of her truck, she’s never even seen it before in her life, and she has no idea how it would have even gotten in the truck was a huge tender mercy.  It let us know Rufio was with us and happy with what we were doing for her.

IMG_5465 Aunt Jeri had to leave to go home to a doctor’s appointment.  The rest of us got cleaned up so we could take Rufio’s funeral clothes down to the mortuary.  The temple dress that had been picked out wasn’t going to work b/c of a few stains so we hurried and ran to “Dressed In White” to get another one.  The one we wanted had a little tear on the shoulder, and the sweet ladies at the store gave us a needle and thread so Mom could fix it in the car really quick on our way down to the funeral home.

IMG_5472 We got her funeral clothes turned in and then it was lunch time.  Aunt Jana really wanted some “Italian Place” sandwiches so we drove up to Orem and got some and brought them back to Rufio’s to eat.  After we were stuffed to the gills, everyone went their separate ways to get some things done.  Mom took a nap & Jill had to get some stuff done for work.

IMG_5475 I decided to go w/ Jana & Keith to Sam’s Club.  They are staying at Mike & Melanie’s house, but all they have is a blow up air mattress and it’s too hard on Keith’s hip to be that low to the ground.  So, they were testing out mattresses to see about getting one for the guest room.  We also got a bunch of groceries while we were there.

They got the mattress & box spring & bed frame and as we were going out to the truck, some random man asked us if we needed help loading it!  We were so thankful that he offered.  I told him that Utah people are just so nice and wonderful.  We got to Mike & Mel’s and I got to love on their 2 month old baby boy.  He has the fattest cheeks and is a total snuggle bug.  Then I helped Uncle Keith unload the truck and take them downstairs and set them up in the guest room.  We were going to wait for Mike to get home from work but figured we’d just get it done so they didn’t have to do it later.

Then, as we were leaving Mike & Mel’s neighborhood, Uncle Keith pulled over really quickly in front of a random house.  I looked and saw an old man trying to wheel a fridge down a big snowy hill at the side of his house.  The fridge tipped over before we could get there, but all 3 of us jumped out of the truck and ran over to help.  We got it down the hill, into the backyard, across a muddy garden, and up onto their porch.  We waited while his wife ran and got some cardboard to put down on the floor in the house so we didn’t get their carpet all gross and muddy.  The wheels of the dolly were caked in mud!  We got it in the house, but couldn’t go through the doorway to the kitchen w/out taking off the doors of the fridge.  The old man said that he would do that and thanked us over and over for our help.  As we were getting ready to leave he told us to wait and he ran into his house and come out w/ a loaf of homemade bread he had made that morning!

I am so thankful that Uncle Keith saw him and that we were able to stop and help.  Aunt Jana was joking on the way home and saying that she bets I wish I had stayed home and taken a nap instead of going on this crazy trip w/ them.  I was glad I went, b/c it was a fun adventure and now we have some fun stories and memories we get to share.

IMG_5482 We came back to Rufio’s and made spaghetti & garlic bread for dinner.  Dad got back from spending all day w/ Grandpa Johnson & his side of the family.  His hip surgery went great and he’s recovering nicely.  I’m so glad we happened to be here so Dad could be there for all that.  After we ate, the sisters worked on the program for Rufio’s funeral.  The rest of us watched the Monday Night Football game.  Nate had been snowboarding all day and he was sore when he got home tonight.

IMG_5485 It was so good to talk to my little love bug tonight before she went to bed.  She is being so well taken care of that I don’t even have to worry about her at all during the day.  They were making gingerbread houses after school at Karri’s school where she teaches and Autumn got to be included in that.  She said it was super fun and that she loved it.  It’s such a huge blessing to have such amazing friends who are like family to us!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Touching Music Sunday

Maggart & Autumn First of all, Autumn probably doesn’t even miss me at all.  She is having the time of her life at our friend’s house.  They went to our ward for sacrament meeting b/c there were 2 mission homecoming talks.  Autumn got to see our home teacher and his family who moved last year for work.  I am sad I wasn’t there to see them, b/c they were the BEST home teachers and we love and miss them.  But I’m super happy that Autumn got to see them.  She had such a close bond w/ him.

IMG_5439 You can’t tell in this picture, but there were big huge snow flakes softly swirling and falling to the ground outside the window.  It was so picturesque & made us feel like we were inside a snow globe that had just been shaken up.  Nate & Dad made a really good breakfast casserole for everyone.  Then the 4 sisters got ready and headed down to the funeral home to pick out Rufio’s casket and make the funeral arrangements.

IMG_5447 Uncle Rick, Nate, Dad, & I went to Rufio’s ward at 11:00.  This is one of the hymns we sang, and the last verse really touched my heart today.

And our eyes at least shall see Him, through His own redeeming LOVE.
For that child so dear and gentle is our Lord in heav’n above.
And He leads His children on to the place where He is gone.

IMG_5450 Dad & Nate & I all got a kick out of all the scooters that were in the bushes outside the church.  We kept saying “only in Utah” would kids be able to ride their scooters to church in the snow … AND have them still be there when they went to leave!

IMG_5453 We had yummy chicken noodle soup that Keith & Jana had brought down for lunch.  Y’all, I have a feeling that if I’m not careful I’ll be gaining at least 5 pounds on this trip b/c of all the good food we have.  We relaxed, watched football, talked, laughed, and had fun being together.  Jana showed us the slideshow she had put together of pictures from Rufio’s life.  I was doing really well until towards the end and then I LOST it and was doing the sobbing ugly type of crying.  What an incredible woman my Rufio was.  Mom & Jana & I got these copies of the slideshow ready for all the grandkids.

I had planned on meeting up w/ Brenner & Jonesy so we could go to a Polynesian Christmas fireside together.  However, some things came up for both of them w/ their families and they couldn’t go.  I was NOT about to miss a chance to see some Polynesians sing, so I got the info from Jonesy, borrowed Aunt Jeri’s car, and drove myself to American Fork.  I am SO GLAD I went, b/c my friend Maka that I used to work with was there singing.  Also, Junior Maile was in the choir and sang and his voice is like none other I have ever heard.  I could sit and listen to him sing all night.  After the fireside, I went up and talked to both Maka & Junior.  What a great Christmas treat to be there and get to listen to them share their incredible talents.

IMG_5455 I got back home, and this reminder popped up on my phone!  I had it set in my calendar to call Rufio every Sunday night at 9:30 my time, 8:30 her time.  I am going to miss talking to her every Sunday night so much.  When she would answer I would always say, “Rufiooooooooooo!”  And she would say, “Is this my Lisa Maurice-eeee-oooo?”  I think I’ll leave this calendar reminder on my phone for a while to remind me of her.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Happy 12/13/14

IMG_3279 This morning I got up at 7:30 so I could get ready for the day and head over to Mom & Dad’s.  I got Autumn ready, did her hair, and then we had to snap some pics of Autumn & Olivia together in their cute Santa dresses.  They are such cute Christmas cousins.

IMG_3297 At 8:30 we went to Autumn’s daycare for pictures w/ Santa & breakfast.  They did a very nice job. I’ll have to post the Santa pics when they are emailed to us from the professional photographer.  Nate was so happy b/c they got a few cute pics of Olivia smiling at Santa & then she started crying.  He was more happy about the crying pictures than the smiling pictures.  LOL!

IMG_3300 After the pics & breakfast, Autumn & I rushed home to get her all packed up and then I got myself all packed up.  We ran a few errands & then went over to Curt & Mary’s at 11:00.  Curt had called yesterday to invite us over to decorate gingerbread houses w/ them.  Billy was there & I had to snap a pic of Curt & Billy in their nice church clothes b/c they had just gotten back from doing a session at the temple.  We’re all so proud of Billy for being baptized, and now he’ll be going on a mission next month!!!  Poor Curt has a black eye b/c he got hit in the face w/ a hockey puck a few days ago!

IMG_3303 Mary is so much fun & so over the top!  Look at how many bowls of candy she had for the kids to use.  I personally am not a fan of gingerbread houses b/c it’s such a waste of money & candy.  I’d rather eat the candy than stick it on a house for decoration.

IMG_3307 First of all, I have no idea what are up w/ Autumn & Curt’s faces in this pic.  LOL!  Mary had the graham cracker houses (so much better than gingerbread) already put together so all the kids had to do was add frosting and candy.  They all had such a good time.  Autumn & I were going to leave at noon so I could drop her off at the house she’ll be staying at all week.  But, they weren’t done decorating their houses yet so Curt & Mary offered to drop her off over there when they were done.  I am beyond blessed to have some of the greatest & most generous people as friends.

IMG_3319 Nate & Riannon wanted some family pictures before we left.  I LOVE this one of their cute little family.

IMG_5414 Britt picked us up at 1:00 in his big huge van so that all 4 of us & our luggage would fit.  He dropped us off at the airport and we got checked in just great.  The lady helping us check in was an ANGEL and allowed us to check all 4 of our bags for free on Nate’s military ID.  SO NICE!  Here we are while waiting to board the first plane.

IMG_5415 I never cease to be amazed at views like this.  Ancient rulers probably would have given their whole fortunes or kingdoms to experience flying.  I try not to think about the fact that we are thousands of feet above the Earth and that we’re hurtling through the sky at such high speeds.  It gets scary if I think about it too much.  Especially since this plane was so small.  I had to duck to get through the door of the plane, and then I couldn’t stand up straight once inside.  There was only one seat on the right, then the aisle, then 2 seats on the left!

IMG_5417 We were only in the air for 40 minutes before we landed in Houston.  I have no idea why we had to fly south to Houston only to turn around and get on another plane headed north to Utah.  But, that’s where the cheaper tickets were to, so that’s what we went with.  We got some really yummy food at Bull-ritos (kind of like Chipotle but better), and watched the Army/Navy football game on TV.

IMG_5424 Our flight from Houston to SLC felt like it was SO LONG!!!  It was a small plane too w/ only 2 seats on the right, the aisle, and 2 seats on the left.  Plus we were the very last row at the back of the plane & the engine was right by us.  We all had to wear earplugs.  The only bathroom on the plane was right behind our seats.  At one point, the pilot came back to use the bathroom and we joked w/ him and asked who was flying the plane.  Nate got so restless that he laid down in the middle of the aisle when the stewardesses were at the front of the plane.  I tried to take a nap but couldn’t.  Especially b/c Nate kept letting off SBD’s … silent but deadly farts.  PHEW!!!

IMG_5430 We FINALLY made it to SLC and I was so glad to stand up and stretch my legs.  I told Nate he had to stand by this poinsettia tree b/c it’s tradition.  We got our rental car (a nice mini van) & headed down to Provo.  It was so good to see Rick & Jill & Cade & Jeri.  Jana & Keith will be coming down tomorrow.  We ate some sandwiches for dinner, visited, and then called it a night!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Cleaning The Temple

Today at work I was able to find plane tickets for Utah for Mom, Dad, Nate & I for a good price.  But, only if we flew Saturday to Saturday.  So, I called Mom and she said Nate & Dad could get off of work and to go ahead and book the tickets.  That started a whole Friday frenzy. I had to send out a bunch of emails to my YW Counselors so they could help me w/ our ward Christmas party on Saturday, I had to cancel our Johnson Family Christmas party that was going to be at my house on Saturday, etc. Then as if that wasn’t frenzy enough, work was CRAZY BUSY today and I didn’t even get everything done that I needed to before I am gone all next week.  I wasn’t ready for 5:00 to get here today.

I went over to Mom & Dad’s and we ate dinner and then I said good bye to Autumn b/c she was spending the night there.  I came home and started a load of laundry so that I could pack all the stuff Autumn & I would need for next week.  Some AMAZING friends offered to take Autumn all week for me.  Aunt Sandy had originally offered to take her, but that would mean Autumn would miss a whole week of school.  The friends Autumn will be staying with will be able to take her to school and pick her up in the evening.  I wish Autumn could come w/ me, but the tickets are too expensive and I don’t want her to miss that much school!

IMG_5410 The reason Autumn spent the night at Papa & Mimi’s is that I had volunteered to clean the Dallas Temple tonight from 10:00 pm – 12:00 am.  Nick got off at 9:00 pm, but he wouldn’t be home in time for me to leave to get down to the temple by 10:00.  2 Young Men leaders from my ward were carpooling down, so I just got a ride w/ them.  There were 7 of us from my ward who got to clean.  I didn’t realize that the temple is cleaned every night, and that they have someone at the temple 24 hours a day. 

Anyways, we all got to change into white scrubs and put foot covers over our tennis shoes and we got to work cleaning.  There were 5 of us vacuuming and it took us the whole 2 hours to vacuum the whole temple!  The Dallas temple is a pretty small one, so I can’t imagine how long it takes to clean the bigger ones! Anyways, I finally got home and fell into bed (after switching out another load of laundry) at 12:57 am!  I’m so glad I got the chance to serve in the temple tonight, especially since I won’t be able to do a session tomorrow like I usually do.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Ruth Dawson Hatch

IMG_0888I was sitting at my house on the couch when Aunt Jeri called tonight about 8:00 pm CDT to let me know that my Rufio had passed away.  It’s very bittersweet news. She was ready, her body was done, and it was her time. It is what we’ve been calling a “sad blessing.”  It’s sad for our family because we will miss her so much. But it’s a blessing for her. 

IMG_0887 She has been saying for over a decade that she was ready for Grandpa Jay to come get her, and she wondered why he wouldn’t come get her.  I am so happy for her and the wonderful reunion she is having with Grandpa Jay, and her parents, and other family and friends who are on the other side.

IMG_6415I am thankful for my knowledge and testimony of the Gospel, that this life is NOT the end, that families are forever, and that I WILL see her again.

IMG_9831 She was a beautiful person both inside and out.  I love this picture of Autumn rubbing her pretty hands.

IMG_1931 (2)Autumn & Rufio had a close connection, and they loved to bond of lipstick.  When Autumn was little she would say “whip tick” for lipstick.  It stuck, and Rufio always called her “my whip tick girl.”

IMG_9896  She was such a phenomenal woman & we are so lucky & blessed to have had her as our Grandma & Great Grandma.

P1100231I think this is the last picture I have of the 2 of us together.  It’s from July 2013.  She was more than just my Grandma, she was my close friend. I am thankful for my friendship with Rufio and for the great memories we have together. Like Grandpa Jay said, "all that matters is LOVE!"

IMG_5404 Rosy Posy is such a sweet elf and this is the note she left Autumn tonight, “Dear Autumn, I am so sorry to hear that Rufio died.  I know she loved you very much and that you are her special “whip tick” girl.  This angel ornament is to remind you of Rufio and how she will be in heaven watching over you.  Love, Rosy Posy.”

To be honest, it really hasn’t sunk in that she is dead.  I know that after she fell & hit the back of her head on the cement that she declined in health after that.  But, I wasn’t there to witness her decline and I get to remember her as a my happy & healthy & vibrant Rufio!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

R.A.C.K Activity

Tonight was the BIG Random Acts of Christmas Kindness (RACK) combined YM/YW activity!  Sis Lee started this tradition at least 3 years ago, and I had to carry on that tradition, b/c the youth love it.  They said that they look forward to it every year, and it helps get them in the CHRISTmas spirit.  I knew from serving w/ Sis. Lee in past years that it’s A LOT of work to put it all together, but I had NO IDEA just how much prep work is really involved.  I’ve been working on this for over a month.  I even had to create word documents & a spreadsheet to keep it all organized.

Here’s a rough overview of what we did.  If you’re interested in doing this with your youth group, let me know and I can send you the files.  We met at the church and watched THIS 2 minute video to remember the reason we’re doing this in the first place.  We have about 50 youth, so I created “tasks” for 5 groups.  We also had 2 adult drivers per group.  I am kicking myself now for not taking pictures of everything!  Anyways, I gave each group a paper sack w/ everything they would need already inside of it.  There was a big white sealed packet w/ the 7 tasks they were to complete.  They started with envelope #1 and it told them to do:

Task #1:  Write on a note card 3 ideas for combined Young Men/Young Women activities for next year.

RACK Task #2:  Take the two baggies w/ $1.50 each in them, and go to WalMart (I sent each group to a different store like Target, the grocery store, the $1 Store, etc) and take the baggies to 2 different vending machines or RedBox machines.  The baggies had these notes from this blog attached to them.  I know it says “family” on it and that it says we’re doing something every day (which we weren’t), but this was the closest thing I could find to what I wanted so I just used it and called it good.  I liked how it said to pay it forward if you can & I liked the Aesop quote.

Task #3: While at WalMart (or Target, $1 Store, etc) give out 5 candy canes w/ the RACK note attached to 5 different employees of the store.  Tell them thank you for working long and hard hours in all kinds of weather.  If it’s not too disturbing to customers in the store, sing a Christmas carol to the employees.

snowTask #4:  Take these 10 snowflakes (I found a package of 32 at the $1 Store in the teaching/school aisle) and write a nice message on them for _____________ in the ward.  Then sneakily tape them to their door, leave the bag of powdered donuts, ring the doorbell, and RUN!  Try not to get caught.  The snowman printable is from THIS blog.

IMG_5395 Task #5:  This is such a fun one that I had them do it another time for another family in the ward.  I asked the Bishop for some people he knew in the ward that could use some cheering up, and then I also came up w/ some names on my own (like some single sisters that I visit teach).

Task #6:  I had each group gather & bring back at least 5 cans of food that I would take later and donate to the local food pantry.  They could get the cans from their house, a friend’s house, a member of the church’s house, or just go to the store and buy some.  It was up to them and whatever was easiest for their group to do based on location.

Task #7:  Stop at the hospital parking lot and leave a candy cane w/ the RACK note attached on the windshield of a car that didn’t have one.

IMG_5396For one group, I had them go to an area of town that gets their trash picked up on Wednesdays, and had them take the trash cans from off the street of 10 houses and put them up near the garage.  Then they had to tape a RACK note to the garbage can.  They did that instead of “snowflaking” the 2 houses like the other teams did.

IMG_5388 Once they were done w/ their 7 tasks, they came back to the church where we had hot chocolate, marshmallows, and a Costco cake waiting for them.  In years past, we’ve given the first team to be completed a small treat (like a candy bar) for being first.  But this year I decided that the LAST team to complete their tasks would be the winners, b/c that meant they took their time and didn’t just try to rush through it.  The point was to help the youth feel the Spirit of CHRISTmas, not just to win a game.

Can I just say how much I LOVE Costco cakes?  I had originally bought 2 trays of cookies from WalMart for the refreshments, but that cost $20 and there weren’t nearly enough to feed everyone.  I got this HUGE (9 pound) cake from Costco for just $18.99, and it’s super good and we had more than enough for everyone, w/ some left over.  Costco cakes are the way to go!

I am SO GLAD that this activity is over and that it was successful.  One thing I did was put on some the tasks that they had to text me a picture of what they were doing, b/c I love pictures.  Plus, this way I can include some of their fun antics in the end-of-the-year slide show.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Fog & A Spiritual Tongue Depressor

IMG_5379 It was really foggy today on the drive to work, and it was still foggy during lunch time.  I know this isn’t super thick fog (I lived in Washington State and KNOW what dense fog is), but it’s unusual for us to have fog in North Texas.  Especially since it stuck around until the late afternoon.  I think there is something so mysterious & alluring about fog.  I went to Costco during my lunch break to get a big cake for Young Women’s tomorrow.  While I was there, I got a big combo pizza and brought it back to the office to share w/ everyone for lunch.  It’s just $10 and it was my Random Act of Christmas Kindness (RACK) for the day!

IMG_5383Tonight we had dinner at Mom & Dad’s, Autumn helped me with the dishes, and then we left earlier than usual so Autumn could work on rainbow looms.  Oh, and by the way she found her backpack that she lost last month.  Someone turned it into lost & found, and a teacher finally looked inside it and brought it to Autumn in her classroom!  YAY!  Tonight Autumn showed me this tongue depressor that she wrote on while we were at Papa & Mimi’s house.  It says, “I will focus on the Savoir, because the Savoir is important to me everywhere I go.”  Isn’t that the sweetest thing?  Especially since she came up w/ that on her own.  I think having Rosy Posy bring her a felt ornament each day that focuses on the nativity has been such a good thing and something we’ll have to do again next year.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Rosy Posy, The Helpful Elf

IMG_5367 Autumn is really glad that her Elf on the Shelf, Rosy Posy, doesn’t lose any magic if you touch the elf.  She takes Rosy Posy w/ her everywhere & even buckles her into the back seat when we’re in the car.  Tonight Rosy Posy helped Autumn to brush her teeth since that’s what Santa told her she needs to do in the video he sent her.  For the past 3 or 4 years we’ve gotten a personalized video from Santa to Autumn from the PNP (portable north pole) website.  It’s awesome!

IMG_5368Once I got her to bed, I got to work on taping these RACK notes to 50 candy canes.  On Wednesday I’m in charge of our big YM/YW combined activity.  It’s a tradition for about the past 4 – 5 years that we do Random Acts of Christmas Kindness.  We do it in an “Amazing Race” type style where we split the youth into 4 or 5 groups and each group gets a set of instructions on where to go and what to do when they get there.  It’s a great activity and the youth really look forward to it to help get them in the Christmas mood.  But, it’s also a LOT of work on my end.  I will be glad when it’s all done and successful.