Christmas joy

Whew!  I think the rush of Christmas is over for another year...at least I'll be able to say that when I get my Christmas cards done!  It's the one thing that I just couldn't squeak in, but I'm hopeful it will happen before New Year's.

We had a lovely, lovely Christmas.  It was just the three of us this year, but memorable and sweet.  And yes, we even had a white one!  It was fun to have no schedule and just savor the crackling fire, good tea and good food, play games, and explore our presents.  I got well into Sarah Palin's new biography (well-written!) and worked on our yearly Christmas puzzle.  After a busy month of teas, parties, and special events, it was good to enjoy God's Peace.  I've just been overwhelmed the past few days pondering on the goodness of the Lord to us, how incredible it is to be the object of His love and care.  The Incarnation is still the most staggering thought, the best "Good News" we could ever have received.

Christmas brought SweetPea a neat opportunity to finally put her piano training to good use.  Our new little church has been without a pianist for some time, so she was their 'guest' pianist for the Christmas Eve service.  I think it's refreshed her personal vision for her music and is helping her see some of God's purpose in the long years of training and practice.  We're delighted, and grateful to the Lord for opening up this new door for her. 

I'm hoping for some 'think' time this week.  Being an incurable planner, I'm already knee-deep in goals and lists for 2010, and I need to think through this coming semester and try to get a handle on what we need to accomplish both on school and home fronts.  Always seems like a process of weeding out and prioritizing...what do I really have to do? and how can I work in what I want to do this year?  (You know, stuff like refinishing furniture, writing, learning piano, larking my way through my nature journaling books...  )

Being newly reminded of how good it is to walk in God's peace and leadership, I'm excited and content to see what He has for us this year.  I really want Him to be Lord over everything.




Some Christmas reads

This week we've read aloud "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever"--what a fun book!  We laughed and cried with it, and said to each other how well written it was.  Very good message of how the church has portrayed Christianity, not always in the most clear or welcoming light.  I'm glad for the fresh reminder of Christ's unconditional love.

I remembered we have a very old copy of "The Christmas Carol," annotated for school studies way back when, so we're going to read this aloud as a family in the next couple of weeks.  Who doesn't know this story by heart--with all the many spin-offs we've seen or heard?  But there's just nothing like pure Dickens.  I subscribe to The Writer magazine, and in the most recent issue, one article pointed out how excellent Dickens was at characterization.  So we'll piggyback some writing study along with our Christmas enjoyment.

(Ever the homeschoolers, right?   )



Cold, cold, cold!  Right now it's 6 degrees outside our breakfast nook window, headed for a high of 17.  For those of you who live far away in warmer climes, enjoy it!  We're actually enjoying this wintery weather, though I would like it a tad warmer.

Today is the only day this week we don't have to be somewhere outside of the house, so we get to homeschool all day.  Yay!  So much going on this time of year that it's a treat to be home for a whole day...

- SweetPea's got both math and science tests, as well as editing a story she's submitting to Vision Forum's story contest.  She and I are also planning a Christmas tea for some of our friends next week, so we're finalizing our plans for that.  Seemed like a good year to do this for us, with some good experience in all that hospitality entails.  And she's mad at work on a piano composition she has to have ready for her teacher in a couple of weeks.  It's a duet, which is harder to write.

- We're learning about Napolean and finishing up the French Revolution in our history studies.  What an amazing time in history that was; brutal, desperate, wild.  The church in disarray and powerless.  It makes me appreciate all over again the relative peace we in the western world are enjoying right now, thanks to the Lord's purposes at work and the sacrifices of righteous people with His vision.

- Fried rice with shrimp and baked butternut squash and salad for dinner.

- I'm thankful for a warm house, my family and friends, for the privilege of homeschooling.  God is good!