In the Pipeline, December in Aberdeen, Scotland

In The Pipeline

In the Pipeline, December in Aberdeen, Scotland

This is my view at 3pm every day right now. Dark, wet city from underneath an umbrella. I’m the only person carrying an umbrella. Most people do not bother because of a little thing called Gale Force Winds. I had no idea what those were until this week when the windows were rattling in the middle of the night and I was woken up to the sound of glass breaking from being blown out of my recycling bin. Dear goodness.

I’d be lying if I did not say that this week has been a rough one. I always struggle with how vulnerable to be in this space because everyone has problems, most of which are bigger than mine, and I, for one, do not read blogs to hear about problems but to escape them. But this week, in addition the holidays (and homesickness), the anniversary of my Grandmother’s death looming and the days becoming shorter and shorter, we received some news about our financial situation that was discouraging. And let’s just be honest, isn’t everyone a little bit up against the wall with finances at this time of year? So our situation is not especially significant, but I would be remiss if I did not mention that I am currently basking in the amazement that on a day that began with Taido and me both being particularly down about the state of things, God used the simplest but most miraculously timed of events to lift up our hearts. Nothing about our circumstances changed yesterday, but we saw the face of God in the kindness of others and sometimes, friends, that is all you need to keep going.

Anyways! On to the LINKS!

My home church in Arkansas has a daily advent reading you can sign up for, and I wrote one of them this week. It might have made me cry. To write it. And to read it again. Do the holidays make everyone teary or is that just me?

This list made me laugh. A lot.

While the prison population increases in much of the world, in Sweden, prisons are actually closing.

For those who appreciate the beauty of well done snark.

I don’t care how old my kids are. Slugs and Bugs Christmas will always be my favorite Christmas album. I’ll be playing it for my great grand kids! There is also a new one out with Bible Songs.

Mary Polly and I had a wonderful visit to Edinburgh, which made me excited for the Best Christmas Markets in Europe and Christmas in Edinburgh. I will be sharing about our tour to Loch Ness next week, so stay tuned!

Even though I love to visit the markets, I am plagued by feeling guilty if I shop at Christmas. Even if I am “socially responsible.”

Is it better if I donate money to build schools and enter to win trips/travel gear with Passports with Purpose?

Maybe, but it is probably better to just donate money to my favorite charity.

If you have a business, you could give away some of your services like Sarah. She is giving away $1000 worth of online business consulting to a worthy blogger/entrepreneur. What a wonderfully creative giving idea!

Oh Ann, you get me every time, but this week on hope. Brilliant truth.

All of life’s decisions, made simpler by this one little question.

I often get asked about what I apps I use on my phone for photo editing, so you might enjoy this how to on my favorite photo app.

Speaking of photos, do you agree with these rules of travel bragging on social media?

Are you planning to do a little travel bragging of your own and visit Europe this year? This Top Ten European Cities List held some surprises for me, most notably in the cities that are not on it. Might be time to rearrange the list of cities we want to see!

In a world where you can upload and watch a video of what you did yesterday, I am even more amazed by people who are passionate enough to sustain projects that take much longer. I can’t imagine the patience required for this video of the Joshua Trees that took a full year to make.

Also, hello gorgeous video of Iceland.

Have a lovely weekend and I’ll see you back here on Sunday. I don’t usually post on Sundays, but I have something prepared for the anniversary of my grandmother’s death. So that should be cheery. (sarcasm)

I hope your weekend has fewer “gale force winds” than mine, and that you are cracking your heart open wide to the glories of this season.

With all my heart,



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