Environment, Fitness, Frog Blog, Grace, Holiday, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Spirituality, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

GIFT GIVING IDEAS FOR A MINIMALIST

I approach life with a “less is more and even less is even more” practice. I prefer gifting someone with generosity, kindness, gentleness, time, listening-to-understand…

Christmas and birthdays can become difficult for my circle who love gifting with material tokens of love. People ask, “If you don’t like extra material possessions, what am I supposed to get you?” My answer? Consumables and outings!

A friend challenged me to publicly post an idea list to help her understand my appreciation for minimal inventory. I rise to the challenge!

My favorite things

*Donations to inner-city schools and youth centers

Photo by Helena Lopes on Pexels.com

*Donations to animal rescues and humane societies

*Gift certificates to retreat centers

*Tickets to live theatre

*Cabin/Bed & Breakfast stays

*A dream chasing/travel partner. I have at least 200 places and experiences I want to explore. So far, I’ve gotten 67 of those dreams realized.

*Workshops, classes, seminars to satisfy my insatiable curiosity to learn

*One-on-one walks and phone dates with an occasional coffee or lunch date.

There ARE some material gifts I do enjoy:

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*Candles with citrus or bakery scents (no rose, lavender or patchouli!)

*Any flavor of Dunkin Donut coffee

*Wal-Mart and JC Penney gift cards (the only two places I shop for clothes and essentials)

*Grocery gift cards (I love to cook and bake)

*Turtlenecks in every color (the kind that go all the way up the neck)

*Thick white or black socks

*Double-sized bed flannel sheets (I can never be too warm!)

*Fun print postage stamps (the FROG ones from last year are still my favorite)

*Dark chocolate (bonus if it includes mint or nuts…so the chocolate doesn’t get lonely)

*Note and thank you cards that are blank inside

*FROG stickers and stationery (FROGS have animated fun expressions)

*Orchid, turquoise and lime green are my happy colors

Readers, your turn! What gifts do you give to a “non-materially driven minimalist”? What “less material” gifts do you love to receive?

Leaping into the holiday lily pad of life from the FROG Blog,

Christina

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SELECTIVE TENDERING

Cain and Abel. Can and able.

I see my nature in Adam and Eve’s sons, Cain and Abel. Cain worked the land. Abel tended the flocks. When offering time came to present their God-given harvest, Cain brought a seedy portion of his produce. Abel stocked a butcher block full of his animals’ first born.

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Scripture isn’t detailed, but I visualize Cain wheeling in his overripe fruit and shriveled veggies. The offering plate comes to Cain and his “fresh picked daily” looks like it was yesterday’s fresh pick. Meanwhile, Abel steps up to the plate and presents this morning’s meaty cuts from prime stock (hopefully not from Adam’s rib selection that was used to make Eve).  

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I don’t know the natural abilities of Cain and Abel but in this text, they display their heart. One son can. One son does. The fruit of their spirit is marketed by their action.

Sometimes I resemble Cain. I’ve been given what is necessary to complete my mission yet hold back from giving my best. In a soul search, I’d glean fear, stemming from concern for lack. What if I don’t have enough energy? What if I don’t have money, time, knowledge, exposure, experience,…?

I’m unable to do many things. My creator designed me that way so I could learn to rely on him. Sometimes in my self-reliance, I think I can, but choose to be unwilling.

Frighteningly, the flip side of lack is also fear. Fear of success. What happens if I achieve a goal? Then what? What if I complete an assignment? Will I be able to keep up? Can I meet the next challenge? How will I maintain what I create…?

I’m a blend Cain’s action with an Abel heart. By offering his firstborn, Abel shows how he trusts that God can and will make a way. When he is loyal, Abel sacrifices his fear for faith. God could and did. He still can and does!

Because God can, I will.

Offering my spirit so I can willingly plant good hearted seeds,  

Christina

“…The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast (Gn. 4:4-5).

Environment, Fitness, Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Spirituality, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

PODCAST WENT LIVE!

This is the link to my 25 minute interview with Jason Meuschke, host of The Sample Chapter Podcast.

Episode 151 went live Tuesday November 10th. It featured my first two books, “Life’s Too Short for Dull Razors, Cheap Pens and Worn-Out Underwear and FROG Blog: Learning on a Lily Pad.”

https://samplechapterpodcast.com/christina-m-eder-lifes-too-short-for-dull-razors-cheap-pens-and-worn-out-underwear

Healthy Thanksgiving month! Sharing the lily pad with turkeys and green beans,

Christina

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Spirituality, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized

UNIVERSAL TEACHER’S PETS

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A Dominican sister friend told me, “We’re all God’s favorites. He isn’t a respecter of people.” Her comment came after I said she is one of my favorite people on earth. She knew I meant this as a compliment yet gently reminded me that God doesn’t have “teacher’s pets.”

Some people are easier to love. Some circumstances are lighter to bear. God calls me to love everyone. Everyone? (Yes, everyone Christina).

Bear one another’s burdens? Yes. Not all burdens. Not all burdens at once and not everyone’s burdens.

When he places someone in my path, He invites me to share in what he shoulders. He instructs me to lift someone up. He doesn’t expect or instruct me to carry a person, but I am to meet them with love.  

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My God doesn’t create favorites. I am told he loves and provides for all his children. He offers guidance but ultimately, he’s the director of this earthly journey. When I follow his guidance and act upon his direction, it’s simpler to love and bear with one another. Not necessarily easier, but simpler.

In Isaiah 24:2, this context refers to God’s plunder of the entire earth. During judgment time, he will show no favoritism. In the same way that he shows universal conviction, he’s universally objective with his grace and mercy.

Practicing love on everyone. Lifting others to join me on this lily pad of life,

Christina

“It will be the same

for the priest as for people,

for the master as for his servant,

for the mistress as for her servant,

for seller as for buyer,

for borrower as for lender,

for debtor as for creditor (Is 24:2).

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Spirituality, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

SPRING FORWARD. FALL BACK.

Daylight savings’ time. In spring, I “lose” one clock hour. In fall, I “regain” that hour. It’s not the same hour, but in a year, 60 minutes becomes timeless. It all comes out in the watch.  

Round Silver-colored Wall Clock

Mindfully, I sometimes live in a state of daylight savings’ time. My pendulum thoughts swing between past and present. Recalling previous hours. Anticipating future hours.

With one stopwatch statement and question, James 4:13-14 challenges, “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life?”

Be mindful. Enjoy the moment. Live in the present. Yeah, yeah, yeah. To me, these cliches have become noisy gongs instead of once-welcomed chimes. I’ve heard these mindful messages so often that they ring as buzz words in my heart. They offer truth and I benefit from living their full value.

During this weekend of daylight savings, I pledge to consider these timeless questions:

Fall back:

*If I could fall back to one hour of my life, what would I relive?

*What would I change from that hour?

Spring forward:

*If I could jump ahead one hour, what would I want to (or feel the need to) know?

*How would knowing in advance change the way I live this hour?

I’m unable to relive the past. I cannot outlive the future. I can stop time in its tracks when I am mindful and live in the moment.

I contemplate James’ message, “What is my life?” What am I doing to present myself in real time?

Now ticking from the lily pad of life on the FROG Blog,

Christina

“Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even now what will happen tomorrow…” (James 4:13-14).