Showing posts from December, 2011

The Gift of Self Esteem From A Teacher

Mr. Lesley & me at a high school reunion The other night, while I was catching up on a week's worth of Facebook, I discovered an announcement that a special teacher of mine passed away on December 16.  It broke my heart that I didn't know in time to attend his funeral, but I'm so glad that I found an opportunity a few years ago to thank him and let him know how much he affected my life. Many people can tell you about the teacher that inspired them to learn.  I grew up in a college town and was blessed with many excellent teachers, so if you'd asked me to name my best teacher, I probably wouldn't have said Mr. Lesley.  You see, Jerry Lesley was a lot of fun.  So much fun that I didn't realize how much I was learning.  Over the years, I've probably recalled more from his classes than any other. Jerry Lesley found a way to touch the lives of each and every one of his students.  When he looked out across the classroom he didn't see a group of stud

Finding Christmas Wonder

Image, link below Last night I rediscovered the magic and wonder of Christmas.  It's not like I lost it, so much as I laid it aside for a few years and didn't have time to come back for it. As a child, I loved Christmas Eve, but not for obvious reasons.  Sure, Santa Claus' arrival lurked in the back of my mind, but Christmas never really began until my parents took us to the Christmas Eve service at church. The sanctuary of our small church basked in an atmosphere of expectation as the minister lit the last candle in the advent wreath. Beautiful glass lamps hung from the wooden-beamed ceiling, their light glowing on the aged walls.  At night, the sanctuary took on a mysterious air, the stained glass windows subdued to darkness, the world outside waiting the light of the world. On Christmas Eve, we waited for the true Light of the world, and the place became magical to me. We heard the story of Christmas interspersed with songs like The First Noel, O

It's Not Christmas Without Nutty Fingers

Last week I mentioned I might have time to make our family's famous nutty fingers this year since I won't be stuck shopping all season long.  Several of you requested the recipe, so I decided to include it in this week's blog post. Nutty fingers have been a part of Christmas as long as I can remember. When the large red cookie tin with the clipper ship on the lid appears on the side counter, every member of my family knows what's inside. It doesn't take long before someone eases over and pops open the lid.  The sound is unmistakeable.  Anyone within earshot flocks to the tin,  fingers itching to sample this years' batch.  Before you know it, you've eaten six or seven or a dozen. Some of you may take one look at this recipe and decide to not bother because it will look like a wedding cookies recipe. That would be a BIG mistake.  If you follow the tips I list below, the nutty fingers will come out light and melt-in-your mouth.  If you ignore these tips, the