How surprising it was to receive this issue of National Geographic Traveler in the mail yesterday. I have been receiving this magazine for over a year and never once was there an issue featuring China. Within it's pages are amazing articles full of colorful, emotional pictures of provinces from all over China today. From the magnificent, symmetrical rice terraces of Sage's birth home of Guangxi, acrobats from a school in Hebei, rising skyscrapers in Shanghi, snow capped villages in the Anhui province, diminishing cultures in Yunnan, the captivating Tibetan skyline in Qinghai, cities on the water in Zhejing, thousands of uniformed children singing in Guizhou, an enchanting young girl weaving threads of silk in Xinjiang, intriguing Shaolin monks in Henan and so many more.... it is a must have for anyone who has a child from China or is in the process of adopting from this beautiful country full of rich culture and history. I have high hopes this will precede our PA (Pre-Approval) for Xiao Hua next week which we are anxiously awaiting... A passage to the heart.
In the Blue Ridge mountains the sky is exhibiting that gray foggy shade. It seems the air is filled with quiet as if introducing the snowfall... The semester is over for our middle son who is a majoring in law at ASU. He received all A's and B's. :) His girl friend who is an interior design major topped him with all A's :) There was a cookie exchange at church Wednesday evening. We have never been to one and throughly enjoyed it. We contributed three dozen peanut butter cookies and returned home with a couple dozen of yummy cookie varieties. The pastor told the Christmas story to the young ones, quizzing them on details in playful banter. We sang Christmas carols to the accompaniment of a guitar then enjoyed sweet homemade hot cocoa and treats. It was a simple, lovely time for all.
I dragged Jax (ok, so I bribed him with a free lunch) into town this week with the girls in tow to do a bit of Christmas shopping and found some nice items..... buckwheat pancake mix and walnut syrup from the Hampton Grist Mill which I snuggly wrapped in gold and mulberry wine ribbon will make nice gift bundles. We let the girls decide on three gifts they would like and also give them books and educational games making sure the focus remains on Christ, telling the story of His birth often throughout the season. Our gifts to our beloved sons and others also remain quite simple. While I was shopping I found a basket. Now, those of you who know me know I just love baskets. :) I like 'em a lot.... Well, this basket was really BIG and was on sale just beckoning me to bring it home. Jax said "Mama, What in the world are you going to do with this huge basket?" I just had to have it and as you can see found the perfect things to put in it.... for now anyways. Hope your days are filled with merriment and joy in anticipation of celebrating the birth of Christ. May your basket be full of peace and hope!
A basket of beautiful gifts?? ... smiling and winking
Sailing in a boat???.... there are lots of uses for such a grand basket