We went to church very early this morning. The weather was cold and blustery, and it was gray and spitting snow (not really sticking nor amounting to anything), but we still attended early as planned. We were set to attend the 9:30am service, but on Thursday, both boys had received letters of invitation to a special family project scheduled during today's services. As we had to be home by 11am for Philip to work at Runza, we didn't have time for the project after
our service, so we'd planned to go before
And we were the very first ones there this morning! We arrived at 8:40am, and we quickly settled on making an advent candle wreath as our family project (there were three activities from which to choose). We talked and laughed as we pushed pencils into tiny squares of green tissue paper together, and we all picked a candle and base to add as well. After many minutes, we all stuck the wooden red berries in between the green papers, too.
It's a beautiful wreath. :-)
After our project was completed, Ms. Nicole (the Children's Director) came up to us and exclaimed happily, "Oh, you guys are early! Oh, and you are the ONLY ones so far to actually make your project as a FAMILY! That's so encouraging to see! We had over 50 families last night at our Saturday service, but each person made their own. Look at how beautiful your wreath is, and you made it together!"
We were bewildered. After all, the invitation had said "family project." I suppose it never occurred to us to do anything other
than pick one project and do it together. *blush* But we felt good, and we'd had a nice time working together. I'd steal squares from Philip's stack of tissue, Jack would then steal from my bunch of squares, and then he'd separate the tissue for both he and A.J. to use. We all did an equal share in making our wreath, and it now sits proudly in the middle of our dining room table.
We had a light breakfast of grapes, mini doughnuts, sweet breads and muffins (provided by the church) before heading up to our service. There was no Sunday School this morning, and so the boys sat with us in the pew. The service was wonderful, and it was a peaceful, fresh-feeling start to this glorious Advent season. We ended with communion, too.
We came home, changed clothes, and Philip left for work. I heated up some lunch for myself and the boys, and then I set to baking. Today was Lacey's last day at Runza, and as a friend, I wanted to make something to let her know how much I've appreciated working with her. Philip bought the ingredients for the gift last night, and I set to work making a 'Milk Chocolate Bar Cake.' It was rich and delicious-looking (I didn't sample any), and it had TEN
full-size Hershey's® candy bars in it! It was a triple-layer cake, and I finished frosting it only a few minutes before Philip returned home from work a couple hours later.
He changed clothes, and then we all headed to Runza with the cake for Lacey. We stopped at Hallmark® on the way, and I tucked in and bought her a card as well. When we arrived at the store, Lacey seemed so touched. She read the card, and we hugged for a good while. Then Philip served up very tall pieces of cake to Lacey, the boys (they split a piece - it was so big!), and the other employees there. Everyone who ate some cake said it was very good, very rich. Lacey grabbed a milk from the cooler to wash hers down, even. I'm happy it was so well-received, as I think it was my very first attempt at making a layer cake.
We chatted for a few more minutes with her, and then it was time to really say goodbye. I hugged her again, and I wished her the best of luck in her new job. She's a sweet gal, and I'll miss her.
Afterwards, we headed to the BX to pick up a video game Philip wanted, and we picked up some stocking stuffers along the way. The boys helped me to pick out goodies for the kitties' stockings, too. Then we had a snack at the BX, stopped at the commissary to pick up some orange juice and soda for Philip, and came home.
Jack and I spent an hour or so making a project for his kindergarten class, and he is very proud of it. He even used lots of glitter glue! (I really hope the big splotches dry overnight - yikes!) Then the boys had their baths, and I helped them to make a special dessert tonight with the two leftover Hershey® bars we had - S'mores! We watched the marshmallows "blow up" in the microwave, then quickly smashed a graham cracker on top while they were still hot, and the chocolate was perfectly melty and gooey in seconds. Jack even had chocolate smeared ALL over his face. :-)
I have so many things for which to be thankful.
Now it's bedtime for the boys, and I'm getting pretty tired myself. A much earlier Sunday morning routine yields a much earlier Sunday night routine, methinks. ;-)