Saturday, December 12, 2009

Hear Yea! Hear Yea! Great Giveaway at Robins Lolidots

Holiday Grand Prize Giveaway! Happy Holidays to you all!
Lollipops and Polka Dots
Lolidots has teamed up with some amazing sponsors to make your holidays a little brighter! Come over to the blog because one very lucky reader will win ALL of the following...
  • $25 gift certificate to Dali Decals for a wall decal
  • A pair of soft soled baby or toddler shoes from Shooshoos
  • $12 gift certificate to JD Wolfe Pottery
  • Shirt from Intuitive Productions
  • Car seat cover from Dressy Dribbles
  • Children's belts from C. Belly Belts
  • Chip/dip plate from Pottery and Pillows
  • A Pillow Pet
  • Animal Antics Scholastic Treasury DVD set
  • Night Before Christmas Scholastic DVD set
  • Svan Scooter from Scandinavian

Good luck to all and hurry, you have until December 17th drawing on the 18th.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Fun Free Family Weekend

If you live in the Phoenix Valley,
Here's a great chance to go to the Arizona Science Center, for FREE.
There is a lot of hands on fun.
For more information go to

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas Fires

There have been many home fires lately. It makes me sad, that especially with the economy the way it is, the families are burdened through the holidays.
It makes me remember a story that my grandmother would tell me during the holiday's. My Abuelita, Regina O Gonzalez Ayala, was raised in the Mormon Colonies in Chihuahua, Mexico, in Dublan. She lived in a two story home. She would tell me how at Christmas, when she was little, it was not about the presents. That at Christmas Eve the family would have a nice dinner. The story of Jesus's birth was read from the scriptures. The lighting of the Christmas tree was a great celebration. You see, in those days, the lighting of the Christmas tree would actually be real candles that were lit and clipped on the branches.
One year when she was little, the Christmas tree caught on fire. She was upstairs with her sister. The fire was growing strong, hot, thick smoke and she couldn't see well. She told me how all the family made it out safe.
She was especially thankful of the members of our church. How the members pulled together as one family and quickly helped them. She was so blessed and thankful. So until recently, she hated candles burning in her home.
This past Thanksgiving, our family spent Thanksgiving in El Paso, Texas. My grandma was telling stories of when she grew up in the colonies again. How my great grandfather brother Andres Gonzalez, grandson is Elder Clate W. Mask Jr. from the Quorum of the Seventy. The families who grew up with her: the Browns, Kimball's, Erying's, Mortenson's, Pratt's, etc.
Well, I mentioned earlier that I bought the book Pioneer Christmas Excerpts from Personal Journals, Edited by Susan Arrington Madsen. Today I read the following journal:
As a child I lived in the little Mormon colony of Cobnia Juarez (which I wonder if its a typo and should be Colonia Juarez) in Northern Mexico. Early one Christmas morning I was carrying a small bucket of milk to my grandmother's house, which was a few streets away, when I saw that a house through the block was on fire. It was the home of one of my friends. Terrified, I dashed home to tell my parents. They and all the neighbors rushed to help, but their best efforts could not save the house.

In those days people fastened real candles on the Christmas tree and lit them. in my friends home one of the candles had tipped, setting first the tree and then the house ablaze. Everything was destroyed.

The community rallied around the family, supplying all their immediate needs. And I was even a bit jealous when the children of the family received more gifts for Christmas that year that had been under their tree.

I know the family would have been helped, whatever the time of year, but the outpouring of generosity seemed especially appropriate for Christmas Day, when traditionally we enjoy a special readiness to share.
Camilla Eyring Kimball
from Family Christmas Traditions

It makes me wonder, since my Abuelita mentioned the above names, and Camilla also share the names my grandmother mentioned, could this be my grandmothers home Camilla speaks of? I will call her tomorrow and find out...if she remembers her friends names.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Julia's Christmas

One night when I was sixteen years old,
Father gave a Christms party for his own children
and their families and the nearest neighbors.
We danced.
My brothers were the musicians.
We knew it was Father's aim to end the party at ten o'clock,
which he did right in the middle of the
square-dance by ordering the musicians to stop.
But Father didn't know that my brothers
had lifted me up to the clock many times that night.
Each time I turned it back thirty minutes.
It must have been past midnight when the party broke up.
"Julia's Christmas"
from the Christian Olsen family record
Our Pioneer Heritage 14(1971):199
1907, La Verkin, Utah

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

25 Days

25 Days.
Twenty-Five days to put up CHRISTmas lights,
display The Nativites,
put up the CHRISTmas tree,
bake cookies,
clean and prepare,
sing carols,
read CHRISTmas stories,
visit friends,
visit family,
attend CHRISTmas parties,
wrap presents,
make presents,
listen to CHRISTmas music,
shop last minute gifts,
send out CHRISTmas cards
(that is if you do, I always end up with signed cards that don't make it out to the post office, I gave up),
plan CHRISTmas dinner,
18 get rid of old toys of children,
choose a family to act out the 12 Days of CHRISTmas,
picture with Santa,
visit the AZ temple grounds and listen to carolers and see the lights,
drive around and look at lights,
drink hot cocoa,
celebrate CHRISTmas Eve with family and open gifts, and
on the 25th day, Read the scriptures of Christ's birth.

I like to try to read CHRISTmas stories from a collection of CHRISTmas books I have to my children. I just added another book to my collection.

Edited by Susan Arrington Madsen, Pioneer CHRISTmas excerpts from personal journals is a must have. I will try to include passages from this book this month. With the recession here in Arizona and in many parts of United States, and Worldwide, these passages from the Pioneers who trekked across the plains of United States during cold holiday winters make you appreciate what we have and remind us of the true meaning of CHRISTmas. I would perfer
fresh homemade bread or a sweets over store bought nonsense, or family photos from friends and family. May we all have a stress free holiday season.
Hope you enjoy the passages or thoughts I will include this month.

All of us children hung up out stockings CHRISTmas eve.
We jumped up early in the morning to see what Santa had brought,
but there was not a thing in them.
Mother wept bitterly.
She went to her box and got a little apple and cut it in little tiny pieces
and that was our CHRISTmas.
But, I have never forgotten
how I loved her dear hands as she was cutting that apple.
Hannah Daphne Smith Dalton
Autobiography, LDS Church Archives
25 December 1862