December 31, 2015 at 07:55PM

And that's that for 2015. The last sunset of the year. I wonder what 2016 will have in store for us. #blogit

God, be with them all.

Our son Micah has just left The Field and is headed east, back into the old country where he lives and works this year.

It was good to see him again. He's changing lots and its tough to say good bye again and again.

And that makes me wonder this Christmas, how are the others changing? Do I know them less and less? have they changed significantly but I still know them in their old ways?

I gotta say that is a bit disheartening.

I think that life is lived in the day to day. That it's when we have conflict and we face one another in spite of, and through the conflict, that we really grow in relationship.

I guess the distance and the occasional visiting only allows for focussed time together so that we don't really share life together.

I'll take what I can get, that's for sure.

For now there is another one of ours out there who is growing and learning and tasting life.
Out on highway 26 heading towards Saskatchewan, into the east.

December 30, 2015 at 10:37PM

Sometimes I just want it all to slow down. And other times I just want to zoom ahead ten or twenty years. #angst #tired #blogit

Just sittin a bit. December 29, 2015 at 05:56PM


Just a few words on stress and Christmas and being in my 50s.

Christmas and pre-Christmas was intense this year.
It was all pretty much work related things that come at this time of the year.
But what was new was that I discovered a new way my 52 year old body is responding to stress, and it involves pain. I had my suspicions about the new pain and one evening I spent some time praying it through and that together with a bit of Lauralea's massage helped ease it a bit.

It was there constantly in the background until the Christmas Eve service was over. I was kinda wondering if that might happen, given that I see that night as my last busy responsibility before I take a few rest days.

Its really very interesting to me how our bodies are so interconnected. The physical, spiritual, emotional etc. are connected to each other so tightly that yes you can get over your flu and feel better spiritually, (well duh). But similarly you can get counselling for that bad relationship and see your physical health improve, and pain disappear.

Yes some days a headache is just a headache, but if you start feeling unwell each time you are going to visit someone, well there may be clues there to face.

It's good to know and to learn these things about oneself. 

But this is new, and it might be how my 52 year old self deals with life and stress. But I don't like it. I can't live like that when work gets so crazy.

I thought this week would offer me a more relaxed time to rest up and get things back in their places again. But sudden events in the life of the church, year end deadlines, and needed committee meetings, etc. have me going hard at it again.

It was a good Christmas and I am grateful for the space there was this year to rest a bit and get past the health difficulties. Now, knowing these new things about myself I need to look around and find new ways to live in the midst of stressful times, and it seems learn new ways to process stress. Again.

Didn't I just do that in my early 40s?

It's good to be at home at Christmas.

Walking home tonight from the church the sky was big and sparkled with stars and there was a sharp cold in the air and so herself and I dawdled a bit on the way back home.

Home. At Christmas.
It's good to be at home at Christmas.

So this Christmas it will be Lauralea and I here in our home. Just us.

And it'll be fine and we'll have some fun and look out for each other. We'll play with the toys Santa brings us and we'll eat turkey, watch a movie, play a game, and eat till we are stuffed.
It'll be alright.

This is the time of year when the cost of doing the work we do becomes real. I need to say here that its worth the cost and I don't regret it for a moment. But these are the sorts of days when people start traveling home for the holidays, and I wonder just a bit, what life would have been like for us if we had never moved. If we had lived in the same place for years and years, and had a home that the family could consider their old home for years and come home sometimes for Christmas.

I don't waste a lot of time thinking those sorts of thoughts because really that doesn't help at all. But as a dad I guess thats one of those things I'd wish I could have given my family. A sense of place, location, a connection to home that would be there whenever they wanted to come "home."

Hopefully we've given them a sense of independence and maybe the sense that home is where we are. But still, wouldn't it be fun to share some stories with the grandchildren in the yard where their parents used to play?

But as I said, it's good to be home at Christmas.

By the snowing and blowing out there you'd think it was winter

Really the first colder day of blowing and snowing this winter yet.
And so I walked out to get the mail. It was cold and wet and snowing sideways here in The Field.

But a good day to not have to go to town.
So I am working on study for Sunday and Christmas Eve, drinking tea, while the wind howls its protest.

A Retro Christmas Gift for the Readers of is so long in the tooth that it was eleven years ago when I provided the readers of this space with the Christmas Gift of some hand made Christmas wrapping paper.

You can see the original post here.

I thought that I'd bring that old school paper back, you know, for me who lives half an hour from a Walmart and we've run out of paper, or those who are minutes away from an office Christmas Party and you don't have time to run out for proper christmas paper. Just download, hit print, and wrap.

"Handmade, from the finest of software. Created by a pastor in the Northern Wilds of Canada, as he lay in bed, unable to sleep."

"I got out my Ipaq and created four distinct, yet lovely designs. A lit up Christmas tree, (My favourite), a decorated present, a variation on Snoopy's decorated home, and a festive red and white striped paper. They are done in a patchwork style, on white background. One paper even has all the festive images included!"

"Each paper is created in pdf format, so simply download the wrapping paper files to your computer, load it up and print it off. If you're giving items bigger than jewlery this year, you may want to tape some sheets together for your larger gifts."
Some of them are dated and hand initialled, but that can add to the festive atmosphere, and retro is all the rage now.

The Christmas Tree  (400 kbs)

The Present (683 kbs)

Snoopy's House  (390 kbs)

Christmas Stripes (800 kbs)

And Here you can download the paper with all the images combined. (526 kbs).

So there you go. Enjoy your gift giving knowing that has done it's part to make Christmas a bit more special this year.

Merrrrrry Christmas.

You know how they say there are no small parts only small actors?

Last night was Malmo's Christmas Concert, and Lauralea played the part of Elizabeth to near perfection.

It was a fun night.

Almost, magical even.

Do you know how...

The week has started to go a bit sideways on me I fear.

You know how when its early in the week and things are getting done so very well and the sermon seems to be nicely falling into place, and the week gets busy with peoples "urgent" things and you end up reading your sermon notes on a Friday afternoon and they don't make as much sense as they did at the start, and so you need to start over but by now its Friday and the Christmas concert is tonight and you are, well, tired out, making it hard to concentrate and to shape the words you'll need in two days as you stand in front of the people talking about the Advent gift of PEACE..........???

Yeah. That.
Thats where I am today.