Category Archives: creaftivity

Throw Back Thursday: 4 ways to Celebrate May 1st

May Day Girl's night, 2009
May Day Girl’s night, 2009 (what is happening with my face?)

A little Throw-back Thursday: I posted this bit about May Day last year, but it’s worth another read. Enjoy!

May Day is quite possibly my favorite holiday of the year. I have to thank my neighbors for sparking this excitement in high school. After moving into the neighborhood, we didn’t know many people well. But one special day, the 1st of May, we received a sweet small basket of flowers and candy on our front porch. Eventually, we figured out who gave it to us, and I have kept the favor going ever since.

Today, I want to share my favorite traditions for the holiday. Some are old and founded somewhere in Europe, others are my own yearly habits that everyone can enjoy.

IMG_2851Delightful Ding-Dong-ditch: Prank your neighbors with kindness. Drop off a beautiful basket to brighten their day. Just remember to catch them before they leave for work/school, or the goodies might freeze/go bad. If you plan to give home-baked goods, you may want to break the tradition of being anonymous; let your neighbors know you aren’t a creeper.

Lei Day!!! Hawaiians have their own tradition for May 1st: put leis on everything! I plan to join them this year, and I hope to pass on a few leis to friends (and perhaps their cars) throughout the day. My game will be simple: if I give you a lei, you can either wear it for Lei Day, or pass it on to someone else for the same reason.

Leaving a basket for your beau: The morning of May 1st, drop off a basket at your boyfriend/fiance’s front door. Traditionally, if the gentleman catches the lady, he is rewarded with a kiss. Now what girl isn’t loving this opportunity to flirt so openly but still play hard to get?

IMG_2846I go into full stealth mode for May Day with Shane. The first year I gave him a basket, he didn’t have a clue what was going on. The next year, he just wasn’t fast enough to catch me. He enjoyed lemon-snowflake cookies for breakfast, and I escaped without a kiss. He definitely made up for it later, and every May Day since.

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The baskets prepped and ready

Girl’s Night In: Host a girl’s night to prep baskets the day before May Day. (Or you can do this as a family with your kids. May Day is a great opportunity to teach them the joy of self-less giving, with no expectations of return.)

Ask each friend to bring a dozen of one item to contribute. You can collaborate the loot, swap, and share when you make the baskets. Here are some suggestions:IMG_2847

  • Flowers/Pinwheels
  • Vases (or empty bottles)
  • Bottled Soda
  • Cookies or scones
  • Fruit
  • Candy
  • Gardening Seeds
  • Tea bags
  • Baskets (check the Dollar Tree!)
  • Note Cards
  • Leis (for Lei Day!)

Be unique: 

  • Make your own basket!
  • Make “flowers” out of candy, tea bags, or gardening seed packets.
  • Give a box of bottled soda: empty one soda bottle to use as a vase for flowers. (Thanks to my former neighbors for this idea!)
  • Paint an inspirational quote on a small canvas.
  • Share the greatest gift of all: include a small Bible or devotional book. IMG_2844

Know your neighbor? Give something more unique and personal.

  • If you are May Day-ing your room-mate, include a cute pair of flip flops or slippers in her size.
  • Know a house full of girls? Use nail polish and foot massaging cream.
  • Ding-Dong-ditching some guy friends? Make a bacon basket. Include jerky. Make it manly.
  • Giving some love to neighbors with little kids? Include juice boxes, bubbles, play-doh, or crayons.

IMG_2848Don’t just give a basket to people you know. Share the love with new neighbors, your mailman/woman, or people in a completely different neighborhood (perhaps a low-income neighborhood nearby.) Even a homeless man on the street could use a basket of cheer.

Keep a few extra baskets with you throughout the day. Pray about who God would want you to bless and expect a joyful encounter.IMG_2842

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May Day is coming….. 4 ways to celebrate May 1st

May Day Girl's night, 2009
May Day Girl’s night, 2009 (what is happening with my face?)

May Day is quite possibly my favorite holiday of the year. I have to thank my neighbors for sparking this excitement in high school. After moving into the neighborhood, we didn’t know many people well. But one special day, the 1st of May, we received a sweet small basket of flowers and candy on our front porch. Eventually, we figured out who gave it to us, and I have kept the favor going ever since.

Today, I want to share my favorite traditions for the holiday. Some are old and founded somewhere in Europe, others are my own yearly habits that everyone can enjoy.

Delightful Ding-Dong-ditch: Prank your neighbors with kindness. Drop off a beautiful basket to brighten their day. Just remember to catch them before they leave for work/school, or the goodies might freeze/go bad. If you plan to give home-baked goods, you may want to break the tradition of being anonymous; let your neighbors know you aren’t a creeper.

Lei Day!!! Hawaiians have their own tradition for May 1st: put leis on everything! I plan to join them this year, and I hope to pass on a few leis to friends (and perhaps their cars) throughout the day. My game will be simple: if I give you a lei, you can either wear it for Lei Day, or pass it on to someone else for the same reason.

Leaving a basket for your beau: The morning of May 1st, drop off a basket at your boyfriend/fiance’s front door. Traditionally, if the gentleman catches the lady, he is rewarded with a kiss. Now what girl isn’t loving this opportunity to flirt so openly but still play hard to get?

I go into full stealth mode for May Day with Shane. The first year I gave him a basket, he didn’t have a clue what was going on. The next year, he just wasn’t fast enough to catch me. He enjoyed lemon-snowflake cookies for breakfast, and I escaped without a kiss. He definitely made up for it later, and every May Day since.

8929_142702407834_6513612_n
The baskets prepped and ready

Girl’s Night In: Host a girl’s night to prep baskets the day before May Day. (Or you can do this as a family with your kids. May Day is a great opportunity to teach them the joy of self-less giving, with no expectations of return.)

Ask each friend to bring a dozen of one item to contribute. You can collaborate the loot, swap, and share when you make the baskets. Here are some suggestions:

  • Flowers/Pinwheels
  • Vases (or empty bottles)
  • Bottled Soda
  • Cookies or scones
  • Fruit
  • Candy
  • Gardening Seeds
  • Tea bags
  • Baskets (check the Dollar Tree!)
  • Note Cards
  • Leis (for Lei Day!)

Be unique: 

  • Make your own basket!
  • Make “flowers” out of candy, tea bags, or gardening seed packets.
  • Give a box of bottled soda: empty one soda bottle to use as a vase for flowers. (Thanks to my former neighbors for this idea!)
  • Paint an inspirational quote on a small canvas.
  • Share the greatest gift of all: include a small Bible or devotional book.

Know your neighbor? Give something more unique and personal.

  • If you are May Day-ing your room-mate, include a cute pair of flip flops or slippers.
  • Know a house full of girls? Use nail polish and foot massaging cream.
  • Ding-Dong-ditching some guy friends? Make a bacon basket; include jerky; make it manly.
  • Giving some love to neighbors with little kids? Include juice boxes, bubbles, play-doh, or crayons.

Don’t just give a basket to people you know. Share the love with new neighbors, your mailman/woman, or people in a completely different neighborhood (perhaps a low-income neighborhood nearby.) Even a homeless man on the street could use a basket of cheer.

Keep a few extra baskets with you throughout the day. Pray about who God would want you to bless and expect a joyful encounter.

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14 Days of Loving Jesus: Ideas

IMG_1394February is fast approaching. The stores are already crammed with pink, red, hearts, candy, and stuffed animals advertised marketed towards adults. By March we will see those stuffed animals at the local second-hand store. If you haven’t caught on to my annoyance of this holiday, here it is: I’m annoyed by it.

BUT! Because I can’t escape the constant bombardment to celebrate the holiday, I have decided to use all the red and pink paraphernalia as a reminder to celebrate love in a meaningful way: by showing love to Jesus.

These are 14 ideas on how to show love to Jesus during the Valentine’s season. Each suggestion corresponds to a “Love Language,” or avenue to express love. Only, these expressions are ways to love Jesus, our loving Savior, because He first loved us. Read 14 Days of Loving Jesus: the Project to get the why and “how to” on celebrating the season with Jesus in mind.

  1. Love_letterWrite an encouraging note to the seemingly “unnoticed” person in honor of Christ’s faithfulness to notice and never forget humanity, though we are undeserving.
  2. Do some neighborhood clean up: shovel, pick up trash, etc.
  3. Go for a walk with Jesus.
  4. Write to a Missionary or the child you support with Compassion International.
  5.  Write a love letter to Jesus. Seal it in an envelope and place it on the table during the season. (date the letter and save it for a few years. After a few years, open and read one from 3 years ago every year at Valentines)
  6. Wrap a Bible and give it to someone you have been praying for.
  7. flat,550x550,075,fBuy coffee for somebody, preferably a stranger (I bought coffee for a stressed out college student right before his final.)
  8. Wear a piece of gold-jewelry today as a reminder to thank King Jesus for denying all the riches of heaven to come save us.
  9. Offer to pray for a stranger, out loud with them, then offer a hug: I actually ran into a man who used to be a custodian at the college we do ministry at. I was so blessed to pray for him, in the middle of Walmart. Of all things, a complete stranger later struck up a conversation with me (also in Walmart) and I was able to pray for her too!
  10. Give a prayer foot-rub (or hand massage) to a family member.
  11. Read God’s Word…. its his love-letter to us, enjoy reveling in his love. Try the book of Colossians or some Psalms.
  12. In honor of Christ’s sacrifice, don’t eat any sweets today. When you get the craving for the cookies and candies of the season, be reminded to “taste and see that the Lord is good.” Psalm 34:8
  13. Share your testimony with someone today: I shared mine with a good friend I have known for several years. Even after all these years, this person had never heard how Christ saved me.
  14. Spend time with Jesus and recall the unique ways He loves you.

(Idea Sources: Lifeway Magazine, December 2012 issue; YouVersion Bible App reading plan: Rediscovering the Christmas Season; friends and family; college students; and my wonderful Junior-high and High-school Sunday-school girls.)

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14 Days of Loving Jesus for Valentines Day: The Project

valentine 3

My husband and I have never recognized Valentines Day. Even when we dated we decided the holiday was an over-stimulated way to recognize what we celebrate everyday. The high expectations and pressure, and overall “cheesiness” of the holiday also kept us at bay.

This year, though, I think I am going to take all the giant hearts and chocolate obsessed grocery-aisles as reminders to celebrate my love for Jesus.

The Sunday-school class I teach for JH and High-school girls found a unique way to celebrate advent (in December). We made paper chains with 25 ways we can show love to Jesus during His Birthday month. Many of the ideas will work well for a Valentine’s advent as well!

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Here is how we created our daily celebration of loving Jesus:

We started with the 5 Love Languages and applied them to ways we can love Jesus. For example

  • Physical Touch can be offering a hug to someone, or holding hands while praying for someone, etc.
  • Giving gifts could be giving a Bible away, or wrapping a present for an “Angel Tree” child.
  • Words of Affirmation: writing a love letter to Jesus and putting it under the tree.
  • Quality Time: spending time reading God’s Word, being still, or worshiping.
  • An Act of Service could look like making your sister’s bed (for the young ladies who still live with their families; my sister did this for me all the time and it always touched me deeply.)

Though it isn’t possible to physically touch Jesus, or actually give Him gifts or service, but Jesus said, “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25:40). Many of our tasks consisted of things we did for others, but always in the name of loving Jesus.

81802Next, we made paper chains as a reminder of each day’s love-task. We wrote one idea each on strips of paper. Each day, everyone completed their tasks and added a new chain till we had the perfect decoration by the holiday. You can have one chain for the family, or one chain per-person in the family.

You could fill a pretty vase with small notes of these suggestions, and take one out each day. Or fold each suggestion around a piece of chocolate in a chocolate box. You might not eat the entire box of chocolates when you focus on tangibly loving Jesus with each bite.

Or tie each suggestion to a rose. Keep 14 roses in the fridge or a back room; every day you complete the task, bring one rose out into a vase on the dining table; you can see the reminder of your growing relationship with God every day. Have fun and include your roommates or kids. Just remember to keep the focus on loving Jesus during Valentines.

Take some time over the next few days thinking about how God loves you. Get creative and write your ideas on how to “love because He first love us.” Share your ideas with us in a comment below. And don’t forget to get on the beckyrosty.wordpress.com email list, because I’ll be posting ideas soon!

Shane and I will still treat V-day as any ole’ day (which is such a sigh of relief), but I think this exercise in loving Jesus will set my heart aflame for the Lord even more.

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Active Prayers for your Husband: Part 5

Its just a couple days till 2013! One way I have been preparing for the newness of the year is by cleaning. It was a little early to take down our tree, but I accidentally killed it (turns out a Christmas tree needs water every day.) So Shane and I dragged the forest out of our home and I have been busy picking pine needles out of my carpet and couch cushions. Never been much of a cleaner, but the sense of newness hanging in the air drives me to pick up a scrub brush. (Not to mention, my brother-in-law and his perfectly lovely girlfriend are coming to visit, and I’m sure they’d like to sit on a couch that didn’t resemble a porcupine.)

Cleaning is also a great reminder to pray. Read on for the final installment of 5 Active Prayers for your Husband:

Intercession while cleaning your house:

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This active prayer is more personal than directly related to your husband. I have this idea that a proper husband desires a clean and orderly home, with dinner on the table and pie in the oven. While this is not the reality for most women, home-making is an art that is often lost in the busyness of today. I had this great expectation that I would be a master home-maker by our 1st year anniversary….

That failed.

But I did learn a valuable lesson. My husband does not desire a warm and welcoming house and much as he longs for a warm and welcoming wife. He said to me once, “Becky, you are my home.” I realized that all the time I spent stressing about vacuums and windex, getting the enchiladas just right, and designing and decorating the home was coming from a good heart, but a misplaced direction.

Because if I burnt the enchiladas or left the vacuum out when my husband got home, I felt worthless. My self-esteem crashed and I spent the night pouting about my failure as a home-maker. What my husband truly desires was a wife who had a clean heart, not a clean house. He wants to come home to a warm embrace, not always a warm plate. I resolved to praying for my husband while cooking or cleaning, focusing God’s work within me, not just my work within the home.

visit Darlene Schacht's website for more great ideas: http://time-warp-wife.blogspot.ca
visit Darlene Schacht’s website for more great ideas: http://time-warp-wife.blogspot.ca

I pray for humility and warmth to welcome my husband with the heart of a Godly woman. I ask God to prepare my heart, my mind, and my body to be available to minister to my husband in the few evening hours I get to spend with him in the work week.

Preparing our home, and my heart, through prayer makes my husbands home-coming so much more pleasant for the both of us.

Try praying this for yourself, and your husband: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation And sustain me with a willing spirit.” (Psalms 51:10-12)

Well, there you have it, 5 ways to actively (and hopefully with less distraction) pray for your husband. I hope that it renews your intimacy with the Lord and in your marriage.

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Active prayers for your husband: Parts 3-4

Yesterday I posted 2 ways that I am working toward actively praying for my husband. I believe there is power in prayer, and that talking to God draws you more intimately in both your relationship with Him, and with your husband. Unfortunately, I have this incurable syndrome known as highly distract….. sorry, I had to check facebook.

Anyway, here are a couple more ideas that keep me focused while I am praying for my husband.

Prayer Massages

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I’ve never been so lucky to pray for my husband. Back rubs, scalp massages, or full body massages are great ways to focus on specific areas to pray for your man. I like giving foot rubs and praying for him to have “feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace.” (Ephesians 6:15) I pray the rest of armor of God for my husband while gently massaging the corresponding area (helmet of salvation=scalp massage, etc.)

I also pray protection over my husband. I rub his ears (it really does release tension) and pray for protection over what he hears. In a world of sarcasm, rumors, gossip, explicit songs on the radio in public places, cutting remarks, and false teaching, what my husband hears can deeply affect his resolve to be a man of God. I know the enemy is firing darts at my husband, so I pray protection over him. I do the same with his hands, feet, heart, and eyes (though I don’t recommend you massage your man’s eyes).

There are times I have prayed for 30 minutes or more, at which time my husband is usually drooling. You would think I’d be exhausted, but I can’t seem to stop praying. I thank God for the unique ways He created my husband. While I rub his shoulders, I praise God for making him into the strong leader of our family. While scratching his back, I thank God for giving him a strong back-bone and the courage to please God and not man.

Finally, my prayers end with the request for peace that lasts longer than a relaxing back massage: “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard [my husband’s] heart and mind in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7 NIV).

I always pray silently, but my husband knows I am praying for him. It might mean the world to your husband to hear your prayers for him, or he might just appreciate the quiet stillness of God’s work on his heart while you work on his muscles.

Prayer walks

images-1I love to walk, especially if it is nice outside. Our little puppy is 1 now, and very energetic, so I find myself taking more walks regardless of the weather. It is a good time to get away from the to-do list, the tv, and the “demands” of facebook. I enjoy praying as I walk; walking is a good metaphor for my relationship with God.

It also gives me more prayer material for my husband. I pray for him to have a walk that looks like these verses:

That my my husband would walk in wisdom, which brings safety and peace:

Those who trust in themselves are fools, but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe. (Proverbs 28:26)
Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding… Her ways are pleasant ways, and all her paths are peace. (Proverbs 3:13, 17)

I pray he might walk in obedience to the Lord, receiving the blessing of God and freedom in doing so:

Blessed are all who fear the Lord , who walk in obedience to him. (Psalm 128:1)
I will always obey your law, for ever and ever. I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts. (Psalm 119:44, 45)
And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love. (2 John 1:6)

And that my husband would enjoy an intimate, day by day, step by step, walk with our Savior:

Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (Galatians 5:25)
I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people. (Leviticus 26:12)

Check back tomorrow for Idea #5 in actively praying for your husband…

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5 Active Prayers for your Husband

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The new year is just around the corner, which makes now a great time to get into a better habit of praying for my husband. I’ve noticed quite a few fantastic guides for “praying for your husband” on pinterest lately. Unfortunately, I am easily distracted from dutifully keeping up with these prayers.

So, I decided to incorporate a few ideas of my own to actively pray for my husband. Each activity keeps me engaged and focused; I truly treasure connecting with God in this way, and growing in my marriage at the same time! In sharing these ideas, I hope to encourage other young (or seasoned) wives to become consistent prayer warriors for their men.

So here they are, 5 Active Prayers for your Husband, Parts 1-2:

1. Work-out Prayer time:

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I don’t work out as consistently as I should, but when I do, I find myself praying. Most of the time I pray for the fat to be gone (to the glory of God, of course, ahem). Sometimes, I focus more deeply on praying for God to strengthen me according to His will.

Recently, I began praying the same thing for my husband. As my muscles start to burn, I am reminded to pray for God to strengthen my husband’s spiritual muscles… To give him resolve and courage to do what is right every day. I pray for his strength in our marriage and as the head of our family. I pray to accept God’s help and training when a trial comes, that it might strengthen our dependence on Him.

I put the weights down and ask the Lord to help my husband to let go of the burdens he was not meant to carry; I pray that my husband would trust completely in the Lord throughout his everyday routine.

At the gym, try praying this for your husband: to be “strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that [he] may have great endurance and patience.” (Colossians 1:11 NIV)

Text/Write him prayers

imagesI keep a journal with letters to my husband. He often writes back with small notes or texts. Now there are days where I write to God in that journal about my husband. Again, it gives me something tangible to do which helps me focus. Writing prayers also keeps record of how God has answered them and grown our marriage through the years!

I also try to text my husband at key points during the day, letting him know that his wife is interceding on his behalf. I try to pay attention to when he has meetings, deadlines, and busy days at work, and I pray for God to grant him favor within his career.

You could also try leaving notes in his car, leaving a prayer on his voicemail, or emailing your prayers: “Let the peace of Christ rule in [my husband’s] heart, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:15, 17 NIV)

Check back tomorrow for ideas #3-4 in actively praying for your husband…

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Shave with me Barbie, white elephant gift tutorial.

I am a glutton for White Elephant gift exchange parties. Over the years, I’ve done a terrible job, but this year… oh this was the year.

I found the idea on squidoo.com, just to give credit where credit is due.

Here it is: “Shave with me” Barbie!

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Cost: $2
Time: 5-10 minutes
Materials needed:
Barbie doll
Razor
Glue stick
Scissors
Paper, tape, printer, and computer for label (or you could hand write it)

So I snagged this cheap imitation Barbie and a pack of razors at the dollar store.

Rubbed glue all over her legs and armpits (the funniest part), trimmed the dolls hair and rolled her legs in it, then stuffed left hair under her arms.

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Re-twist-tied Barbie back into her box, inserted the razor, then added the label I made on my computer.

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It took the party-participants a second or two to get the gag, thinking it was just a Barbie; but the label explained it all. Some actually thought I got her from an awkward Barbie supply store (if only there was such a store.)

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We laughed so hard, I couldn’t breathe.

Hope this helps for any of you last minute gag-grifters. This one is a crowd pleaser and super cheap and easy.

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