Geranium seeds

Seeds of wellness for body, mind and spirit

A New Year’s Prayer

cardback2012 I wrote this prayer to be published in a local magazine (“Fitness Plus”) in January of 2009. The magazine has since been discontinued and I thought I would share the prayer again… happy new year!

 

God of new beginnings,

We give you thanks for the gift of life.

Help us to welcome the new year with renewal and hopeful anticipation.

 

Forgive us for the hurts we have done to others and to ourselves,

For the love, forgiveness and help we have failed to offer,

For opportunities wasted.

 

Renew our faith and trust in you,

Mend our broken relationships and hearts,

And open our eyes to the beauty of your creation.

 

Help us to sense your presence in ordinary places,

Your image in ordinary faces,

Your peace in the midst of the busyness of life.

 

And as we make plans for another year,

Grant us the courage to hope,

To dream,

And to act.

Amen.

May your new year be filled with hope.

“This I call to my mind, therefore I have hope. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, God’s mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning; great isYyour faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:21-23)

 

 

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Cookies and Milk – a winning team

Milk and Cookies aren't just for Santa.

Milk and Cookies aren’t just for Santa.

Just thought I’d share a little tip for the day…

Everyone loves cookies and milk. Actually, this isn’t a tradition I grew up with. In Brazil we dipped our cookies (and bread) in coffee, not milk. I still do this and think it is the most delicious thing… sometimes my American friends will stare at me while I’m dunking my donuts in coffee — and I’m like, there’s a reason for a store named Dunkin’ Donuts! Right? I can’t be the only one doing this!

But anyway… since moving to America I have come to appreciate the cookies dipped in milk movement. This week I baked a batch of cookies and have been enjoying a nightly ritual of Santa-inspired snacks. So, here’s my little tip: add a little cinnamon to your milk. It tastes delicious with the milk alone, and I will often drink it that way. When you dunk the cookies in the cinnamon-ey milk, the cinnamon coats the cookies making them extra tasty! Try it and let me know what you think!

cinnamon-milk

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Life is a gift… with an ode to joy

I’ve said this on this blog before, but after this week it bears saying again. Most nights when I rock Lucas to sleep it is a mostly sweet but still bittersweet moment for me. Having him snuggle up to me and run his fingers through my hair while I sing to him (sometimes he joins in, which is oh so sweet), or rocking this precious baby (toddler) in silence, then watching him fall asleep with that angelic face — that is very, very sweet. The bitter part comes with my full awareness that he will grow up too soon and be out of my arms, the knowledge that one day he will get hurt and I won’t be able to protect him from everything, and worse — my full awareness that we are not promised tomorrow and I simply do not know how many more times I will get to rock this precious child to sleep.

That may seem a little morbid but I can’t help it — I’m a hospice chaplain and I see people dying everyday. Young and old, people of every kind. People like me. Babies like my baby. It doesn’t depress me like many people think it might; knowing this has taught me the value of life and to appreciate it to its fullest.

This week the bittersweet moments have been even more bittersweet due to several events: first, a dear friend died on Monday. She was a happy, hardworking, active, wonderful person, mother, and friend. She had a nine year-old daughter who will miss her dearly. Then, a couple of friends experienced similar losses when two other parents of young children died this week. Finally, the shooting in Connecticut left us all numb and wild with grief at the thought of losing our own children.

A really great seminary professor of mine — John Claypool — used to say that “life is a gift.” His very young daughter died of cancer and he was later diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma — a nasty cancer that eventually took his life. And his response was this: life is a gift. It helped him to appreciate the time he was able to spend with his daughter, and the life he shared with his wife, family and friends.

That has always, always stayed with me. Life is a gift. Appreciate life.

By the way — here’s the back of our Christmas card this year!

cardback2012

And the front:

cardfront2012

And to finish up I have to share this with you… someone shared this on facebook today and I thought it was perfect timing since tomorrow we light the Advent candle of Joy… amidst all the grief! Flash mobs are awesome and this one is really special. Made me tear up! I hope it gives you some joy.

Peace, love and joy this season and always!! XOXO, Alice.

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