Wednesday, December 24, 2008

"Hanukkah, Hanukkah, Festival of Lights - Hey!"

It is now the third day of Hanukkah, and much is a-buzz at our house! Tomorrow night we're having a Hanukkah Party with people from our Torah Study and my Grandparents are coming over this weekend (if the pass allows - snow is abundant in Washington this year!), plus we're doing the usual holiday/winter activities: baking, sledding and holiday decor!

Presents are of course part of the fun, and this year we're doing it a little different. Instead of just receiving gifts from our parents, everyone in the family is having a night to give. On your night, you get to light the menorah and give out the presents you've made/bought for everyone. So far it's been fun! Tonight is my night, so of course I'm exited to see how everyone likes their gifts. I won't tell you what I'm giving yet, as some of those certain people read my blog :) , but I'll definitely post some pictures and talk about it afterwards, probably in a couple of days here.

Although I don't have time to tell you the Hanukkah story about the Maccabees, here are some links for you on Hanukkah and the story behind it.

- Hanukkah: The Festival of Lights
By Mrs. Brown at Growing in Grace Magazine

- Hanukkah Story

- Hanukah

- The Messiah In Hanukkah

One last thought: although the Hanukkah story is not in the Bible, and God never commanded anyone to celebrate it, did you know that not only is the Festival is mentioned in the New Testament, but that Jesus actually celebrated it? Here's the verse:

"Now it was the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomon’s porch." John 10: 22-23

Cool, huh?

Here's a Happy Hanukkah from me to you!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I have been awarded by Miss Rebekah for both the "Kreativ Blogger Award" and an award in Portuguese. :) Thank you very much! I greatly appreciate it, and am proud to be able to award other bloggy "friends".

Before I pass on the "Kreativ Blogger Award", I've got to follow the rules, which state, "The recipient is to list six things that make him/her happy before subsequently passing forward the glee to others." So, here are six things that make me happy:

- Surprises
- Thoughtfulness
- Giving to others
- Getting mail
- Receiving hugs and kisses from my siblings - something they don't douse out frequently!
(Although Baby MIT has been showering me with kisses lately... :)
- Finding and reading new, good books

First off, I would like to award Mother Dearest at Fresh Thoughts From the Laundry Room the Kreativ Bloggy Award. Mom is very creative, always having such good ideas of what to blog about, how to write things and ways to make your blog more fun. Also, she is creative in other ways too. I can always turn to her for a thought on how to make dinner out of practically nothing (funny, isn't it, when your cupboards are full, and it seems there's nothing to make?), a way I could organize something or how to decorate a card so that a certain type of personality might like it. The list is endless! So, I hereby award you, Mom, the Kreativ Blogger Award.

I have one more person to give this award to: Miss Jocelyn, of A Pondering Heart. Now, I know Miss Jocelyn has probably gotten a hundred awards, but I really believe this one could be added to her list, if it hasn't been already. My reason for awarding Miss Jocelyn is because she is continually writing about something new. I love that! I always enjoy reading what she's wrote about, as usually it's something I haven't seen on anyone else's blog. I also like how she presents things in such a fresh way. It's never hard to keep reading one of her posts, since they are always creative and interesting. I hereby award you, Miss Jocelyn, the Kreativ Blogger Award.

The second award Miss Rebekah gave me was, like I said, in Portuguese.

Here is the wording for this special award: To translate the gift from Portuguese to English, it means:

"This blog invests and believes, the proximity" (meaning, that blogging makes us 'close' -being close through proxy)

"They all are charmed with the blogs, where in the majority of its aims are to show the marvels and to do friendship; there are persons who are not interested when we give them a prize, and then they help to cut these bows; do we want that they are cut, or that they propagate? Then let's try to give more attention to them! So with this prize we must deliver it to bloggers that in turn must make the same thing and put this text."

I would like to award the ladies at Princesses in Disguise this Proximity award. For the past year or so, I have enjoyed being continuously kept up to date by Kayla, Stephanie and Allison on the events and happenings of their family. I have been pen-pals with Stephanie for a couple of years now, and even though I love writing through "snail-mail", I think reading her and her sisters' blog has helped me get to know her better. Also, it's fun! So, Princesses, I hereby award you the Proximity Award.

Congratulations, everyone! And thanks again, Miss Rebekah, for awarding me. :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Ten Things I Do on a Daily Basis

I've been tagged by Miss Sydney, over at her blog While I Wait, for this little bloggy game! I've been seeing this tag around on different blogs, and I thought it looked like fun, so of course I was exited to see I've been tagged for it. Thanks, Sydney!

The Rules:

~Post the six to ten things you do on a daily basis (they don't have to be lengthy like mine are :)
~Link to the person who tagged you.
~Tag five other people
~Leave a comment on the blog of the person that tagged you letting them know that have posted this to your blog.
~ Tag at least one person who's blog you have either just found within the last week or some one who's blog that you don't know very well.

Some things I do...

1. Cook dinner. I am currently on "dinner duty" and cook dinner almost every day, although a one or two times a week Mother Dear will cook it for me. :)

2. Spend a half an hour with Creative Genius. Every week day after the littles have gone down for naps, he and I spend some time doing something he enjoys. Right now he's into being read chapter books, and we're about to finish "Changes For Kirsten" by Janet Shaw, which he picked himself out of our box of library books. :)

3. Exercise. Mother Dear and I have been doing different aerobic videos together just about every afternoon, taking a break on Friday and Saturday (Dad's days off). Personally, I love them! It's nice to feel the results. For example, when we first started exercising, crunches just about killed me! Now, depending on the video, I can almost all the repetitions. Also, I feel so energized for the rest of the afternoon, a time when I normally start to drag.

4. Knit. Right now I'm trying to finish a cable knit scarf I've been working on-and-off on for ages!

5. Lead "Serenity's Way Fun Preschool". Each week day morning at around nine o'clock I have a half-hour of preschool time with MIT #2, Mini Active Boy and Creative Genius. Every week we have a new unit, such as Farm Animals or Construction Workers, that we read books about, sing songs about and do craft/art projects about. It's fun! This week we're doing a Winter theme, with some Hanukkah things thrown in.

6. Dance...sort of. I love ballet, and since I haven't had lessons since I was eleven, I'm not very good at it, resulting in me making up a lot of my own twists and turns. Not too long ago, I sashayed through our living room to get something in our kitchen, and my Uncle Rusty asked, "What's she doing?" My dad answered, "Oh, just being Seren." It's true! I don't walk to get somewhere - I twirl, whirl or sashay. :)

7. An afternoon chore. On Mondays I sweep and mop our front or back porch, depending on which one needs it the most. :) On Tuesdays I sweep the upstairs hallway, the stairs and the downstairs hallway. On Wednesday I vacuum the beds and put new sheets on them. On Thursday, I sweep and mop our living and dining room (the floors are wood). On Friday I clean the upstairs bathroom. And on weekends I'm free. :)

8. Every night when I cozy MIT #2 in bed in our room, I turn on our baseboard heater. Even though we have Natural Gas, for some reason our bedroom doesn't have a register to vent heat. Our house was built in 1914, and I've often wondered what it was used for when it was built. No one could sleep in it, that's for sure! I actually like having a baseboard heater though. In our old house, which was practically new, there was a vent in my room, but sometimes the temperature would get a little chilly, since my room was under ground (we had a split-level house), and we'd have to bring in a second heater. I enjoy being able to heat my room with just one now, and always being able to control it! :)

9. Listen to music. Every day, right before Dad comes home for dinner on his lunch break, we have "bike time". The two older boys get out their scooters, and the the two younger kids get out their bikes and ride around and around through our main floor, which is built so you can go from the living room to the entry way, through the hall, through the kitchen, to the dining room, then back to the living room, all in one circle. Usually in that time, we have some upbeat worship music playing, which I enjoy working to as I finish dinner. Lately, we've been listening to World's Best Praise & Worship. Sometimes I even give it a couple rounds on the scooter!

10. Talk to my grandparents on the phone. My grandpa ("Grampy," we call him) likes to call and chat about different things he's seen on the news, or talk with my mom or I about something we've blogged about, give us the update on a family member or just see how we're doing. My grandma (we like to call her "Gram") enjoys calling to hear how we're doing, likes to talk with Mother Dear about things (like, "Hey, I'm at Goodwill, and there's this really good pair of jeans here that look like they might fit Active Boy. I know he goes through jeans in a snap, so I thought these might be good for him. What size does he wear again?") and sometimes she calls with a favor for me to do, like look up the address for such-and-such place on the internet, then look up on Map-Quest how long it would take for her to get from where she's at to such-and-such place. I'm her little secretary! :)

Well, there's my ten things. :) I would like to tag:

-My Uncle Tim, over at Emergent Observer
-Miss Stephanie, at In His Time
-Miss Rebekah on Bopey's Blog
-All the Princesses at Princesses in Disguise
-And lastly, for my blog that I don't know very well, I'm tagging Miss Kaitlyn at her blog, Purple Princess

Thanks again, Sydney, for tagging me!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

It Just So Happens...

A guest post by my dad, Randy, about the true "Christmas"...

I grew up celebrating Christmas. Every year my parents would help us shop for one another. I loved buying gifts for my family and friends! But to be honest, it wasn’t so much the giving; it was how I wanted them to appreciate how well I had shopped. I wanted them to see how well I knew them in order to be able to buy for them the best gift!

We would all go to church Christmas Eve. My dad would leave early and put out the Santa gifts so they would be there, to our amazement, when we returned home…then we would open most of the gifts, one by one, with lots of thankful hugs, and perhaps save one gift for Christmas morning. All the while munching on holiday cookies and fudge my mom had been storing for months!

I loved the Christmas tree at night. The shiny bulbs, the colorful lights, the mounds of presents under it!

In Messianic Judaism, which to me is a return to the faith of Jesus Christ (Yeshua HaMashiach) and his disciples, what we do or what we don’t do, is solely determined by what God says. Regarding Christmas, he says nothing. There is no Christmas story in the Bible. "What!?" You say, "What about the story in the gospels about Jesus birth and the wise men and the shepherds..."

That event wasn’t on “Christmas”, but it was a holiday, or should I say Holy Day. Long before the time of Jesus’ birth, God had revealed His Holy Days to the brand new nation of Israel. He said they were His days, and He was showing these days to them. (Leviticus 23:2-4,37,44)
It just so happens that each and every one of them points to our Messiah and what he did, and what he will do!

He was born on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles.
John 1:14 (“dwelt”; lit. “tabernacled”); Rev. 21:3 (speaking of Christ as the “tabernacle of God”)
For an in depth study on why we believe Yeshua was born on Feast of Tabernacles, or Sukkot, see :

He was circumcised on the Eighth Day.
Luke 2:21

He was crucified on Passover.
Exodus 12:11; 1 Cor. 5:7

He was buried in the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Exodus 12:15-19; 1 Cor. 5:7,8

He was resurrected on Firstfruits.
Exodus 23:16; 1 Cor. 15:20-23; James 1:18; Rev. 4:4

He baptized the new church on Pentecost.
Mark 1:8; Acts 2:4

He will return as King and resurrect the dead on Feast of Trumpets.
Matt. 24:31; 1 Cor. 15:52; 1 Thes. 4:16

He will judge the world on the Day of Atonement.
Acts 10:42; 17:31 (“appointed a day”); Rom. 2:16; 1 Cor. 4:5; 2 Tim. 4:1 & 8; Rev. 19:11

He will live as King on earth beginning at Feast of Tabernacles.
2 Cor. 6:16; Rev. 21:3

And he will create a new heaven and a new earth on the Eighth Day.
Isaiah 65:17;66:22; 2 Peter 3:13; Rev. 21:1

So, every feast day revealed by God reveals the person and work of His Son, Yeshua the Messiah.

God tells us to remember His holy days and this is why. It just so happens Yeshua was born on one of them, but that was God’s plan all along! So we don’t celebrate Christmas, but we recognize, remember, and celebrate God’s holy days, and it just so happens Yeshua was born on one! A coincidence? You decide!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

We Don't Celebrate Christmas

Yes, it's true. We really don't. Find out why here, at The Pilgrim Path.

Now, while we don't celebrate Christmas, we do believe in Jesus Christ. Did you know He was really born on the Biblical Feast called Feast of Tabernacles, or Sukkot? Well, since Jesus wasn't born on Christmas, what's the point of celebrating this pagan holiday?

I would love to hear your opinions!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Our Little Sweetie Pie

Last time we chatted about Baby MIT, she was just starting to pull herself up. Now she is 9 months old, and doing much, much more! Here are some of her recent accomplishments....

  • Clapping - she does this whenever she hears music, or when someone says "Yay!"
  • Talking...sort of. She says "Mama" and "Dada", although sometimes not for the right person :) ; she says "uh-oh!" whenever she drops something; once in a while she'll say book; and last but not least, sometimes she'll say "up" when (can you guess?) she wants up. :)
  • Waving. She's been waving "hi" for a while now (and says "ha" along with it), and just started waving "bye" not too long ago.

  • Learning sign language. She knows and uses "all done" and "more". I love the "more"! Sometimes I'll be eating pretzels or some sort of snack, and she'll crawl over, pull herself up on my legs and I'll give her a piece. After she's eaten that piece, she'll start jabbering loudly (sometimes very loudly!) for more. I'll ask her, "You want more?" and she'll smile and do the sign. :) After that, she'll keep on doing the sign each time she wants more. Sometimes I won't be paying attention, and I'll look down and she'll be fervently signing "more". :)

  • Playing little games. Every so often she catches on to something, like blinking eyes, and copies it. Then it gets to: you blink, she blinks, you blink, she blinks, you blink, she blinks and so on until one of you gets tired of it! Her very favorite and most recent game though, is "So Big!" She never gets tired of it. To play, you say "How big is ____ ?" Baby lifts his hands up, and you say, "So big!" Every single one of my siblings has played that game and loved it. I'm sure yours would too!

  • Eating solids. Mostly she eats anything that we're eating, just cut up in very small pieces.

  • Almost walking. She's been using the little walker we have, and cruising around the living room area. She loves that thing!

  • Climbing stairs. She is definitely good at that! She also can climb down if she wants too, but we try to be right there for that, as she's not too good at it yet.

I can't believe she's already doing all these things! It seems like yesterday she was born in our living room, all small, pink and... so baby like. I can't wait to see her grow even more!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Gum Drop Pillows

Here is my first sew-from-a-pattern project; Gum Drop Pillows! Since it's another first for me, and I greatly enjoyed the process, I thought you might like to hear how these pillows came to be, and see a few pictures.

I got the idea to sew them about a month ago when my mom and I were at Craft Warehouse. I was aimlessly wandering around the fabric area, when I saw some sample pillows sitting on a shelf. As soon as I saw them, I knew I just had to make one! After thinking about it for awhile, I figured I could make two pillows with coordinating fabrics, as holiday gifts for some friends of mine, who are sisters.

My mom and I ended up coming back a week later, to shop at the big Craft Warehouse yearly sale, and that's when I bought all my material and the pillow pattern (both of which were largely discounted!!). Since the store was crazy busy, and we knew the fabric cutting line would soon be extremely long, my mom and I ran (ran!) to look at fabric together. I quickly decided on the fabric for the first pillow, and Mom ran (ran!) to get in line with it. While she was waiting, I quickly looked for somewhat matching fabric for the second pillow. Before finding any, my eye caught the Cottage Romance fabric collection. I thought it was so cute, so I ran over and picked out my favorites for both pillows, and got them to Mom just in time before the sales lady cut the fabric I had previously picked. Whew!

The next day, Monday, I cut out all my fabric. I was a little worried I wouldn't quite like what I had gotten, as I made my final fabric choices in about 6.2 seconds, but I was extremely pleased when I had everything layed out.

Then, I spent a few days embroidering my friend's names onto the two, small octagon-shaped pieces, that would end up being on the tops of the pillows.

That Wednesday, my grandparents came to spend the rest of the week with us, so my grandma was able to help me tremendously in sewing all the pieces together. Thanks Gram!

On Thursday night, we got the pillows done. Here is Valentina's...

...and here's Galina's.

I love the way they turned out! Since the ladies live not too far from my grandparents, my grandma was able to drop the pillows off at their house the following week. And, from what I understand, the girls loved them too!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Easy and Healthy Pancake and Waffle Recipe

My mom and I personally love this recipe. Once in a while we'll have a "breakfast for dinner" night, and these are usually the main course of the meal. It's so nice to be able to start the pancakes up in the morning, and when it's time to make dinner, just blend a few things in with the soaked grains and pour the batter on the griddle. While they taste a little more "healthy" than normal pancakes, with a little syrup or fruit sauce, they're good!

Blender Batter Pancakes
6-8 servings

1. Place in blender:

- 2 cups buttermilk or yogurt thinned to same consistency (or, if you're making waffles, 2 1/2 cups)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup rolled oats, whole oats or other grain
- 1 cup buckwheat, brown rice, corn, millet or other grain

2. Mill on high speed.

3. Cover batter and let stand at room temperature for several hours or over night.

4. Preheat griddle on medium high or waffle iron on highest temperature.

5. Just before cooking, add (dropping in vortex of blender) and blend:

- 2 eggs
- 2 Tbsp flax seed
- 1 or 2 bananas (to sweeten the flavor)
additional liquid - as needed to keep churning

6. Blend in thoroughly but briefly:

- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder

7. Bake on griddle or waffle iron (3-5 minutes or until crisp).

Picture courtesy from The Happy Housewife