The place God calls you is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Let The Festivities Continue

In talking with some people last night and after a bit of thought this past week, I have decided that it's not Christmas that will push our caloric intake over the's the leading up to this celebration. I recall watching an interview several years back on Oprah. Yes, I have spent many an hour watching Oprah. This was back in my "spare time" days and during her pre-political outspoken-ness, and pre-post modern religious time. It was back when I felt she maybe held back a bit on some of her opinions. It was when her shows weren't riddled with interviewing only actors and actresses. It was back when I felt that her views lined up a bit more with at least some of mine. I still do admire her. I think she has defeated the odds and risen to be more than a statistic. I just don't agree with much of what she says anymore. Ok, enough ranting.

The interview I was watching was the one with Kirstie Alley who had just become the newest Jenny Craig spokesperson. This was pre-Queen Latifa and Valerie Bertinelli. Oprah, in her usual honest line of questioning simply asked Kirstie why and how she got so fat. I don't recall all of Kirstie's response, but some of it was along the lines of her marital break-up and being a single parent, along with a host of other Hollywood (token?) answers. The one thing that does stick in my mind is that she said that for her the main reason she "lost control" was that the holiday season for her would last from...
Halloween until Easter

Come again? Yes, 6 months of cooking, baking, partying, and eating frenzies. It's not a wonder there's an obesity epidemic. This one month of December I believe, is overwhelming enough for most of the people I know.

But, the flip side of the coin is the incredible - once a year, unique - fun, in which we can relish. I had some last night.

An annual Gingerbread House building contest at a friend's family's place was awesome. In honour of our impending adoption we built an Ethiopian Orphanage...sort of. Well?! What else would we do, right?!

Taking the top off so we could access the inside of our orphanage...(yes, that is a power tool)
The babies in their beds, the ones playing in the inside play area, the ones on the soccer field, the water well donated by World Vision, the sand box, jungle gym, basketball hoop, blanket on which the kids could enjoy their injera. We got down and dirty. Creative with sugar, if you will. The nannies watch as the children play. The coffee beans are representative of coffee's country of origin (didja know that?). Pretty much the only rule is that everything in, around, and on the house must be edible. So, at only the last minute did we place the Ethiopian paper flag.

Other incredible ideas and creations last night included...

The Oilers
(Yes, even Edmontonians flew in for this event!)
Alice In Wonderland
Halloween strikes at Christmas
There were about 6 or 7 others but these ones were really great! This was an incredible night - I can't think of a better way to get in the Christmas spirit than with Gingerbread Houses.

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