Joy Dare :: 3 Gifts Shining

The kids and I are loosely following along with the Joy Dare that Ann Voskamp does. I say loosely, because I never finish anything.

But we’ve got the December dares on the fridge and we’re keeping our eyes open for things that we are grateful for this month.

Three Gifts Shining.

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Truxton and Kinsley both thought of the Christmas tree. Having a Christmas tree in the living room is pretty much the single most exciting thing these guys can imagine. Does it really get any more cozy than that?

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Gillian thought of our candles.

Those are supposed to be advent candles there in the middle, but, uh, someone forgot that there were supposed to be five when she bought them. Also, the afore mentioned someone had intended to come up with some clever way of denoting the first three as lavender and the fourth as pink, and has yet to do so.

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And Sophie, never one to be hindered by what she can actually see at the moment, thought of the stars.

“Gratitude exclaims, very properly, ‘How good of God to give me this.'”
CS Lewis

 

Wrapping up November

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Reflecting back on November, there is really so very much to be thankful for.
Mainly coffee.

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I kid.

Kinsley has done very well on her prednisolone course, and amazingly, we’ve stayed essentially healthy.

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We have seen the tender hand of our God relentlessly working on a situation which we have prayed about for ten years.

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And as always (but even more obviously to us this last month) He has provided in extravagant and surprising ways.

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Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; 
great is your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:21-23

 

Joy Dare Blog

In a year.

It’s been more than a year since I’ve blogged. Life has been full of really crazy up and downs and I’ve needed the downtime. But I’ve missed blogging! I have no idea if I’ll keep up with the ol’ blog or not, but for today, here goes.

IMG_2124The kids are still wild and woolly.

IMG_1182Seriously, there’s never a dull or quiet moment around here.

IMG_1134 copyAnd guess what? We’re adding to the chaos come March. We couldn’t possibly be more excited about this little expansion project.  I’m currently the main one doing the expanding.

IMG_1184 copyIn a year, Truxton has completely mastered reading, and more importantly in his book, collected hundreds of frogs. 

IMG_0593This summer we’ve discovered that Kinsley has Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, and we are learning to cope with that development. In other news, she finished The Lord of The Rings since last summer. Now, if we could only master some basic addition, I’d be thrilled.

IMG_1302 copySophie has polished up her reading skills, and blossomed into the general ring leader of all miscellaneous children. Her younger two siblings constantly look to her for inspiration and guidance. It’s scary I tell ya.

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Gillian is still basically her sweet, easy going self. Except when she’s not. Then boy, can she be rotten. I swear that we skip the terrible twos, but pay for it at age three. She’s begging to learn to read, because being the only non-reader in a family is just way too hard on a person’s psyche. And she’s getting it, actually. So by next year all the kids should be readers.

Wait, no. I forgot about Baby X. Who, by the way, purports to be a girl.

IMG_2260Yeah. You can pray for us.

Continue reading “In a year.”

Chelsie’s Fitness Challenge

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The kick in the pants I have been needing this week came from my sweet sister-in-law Amber, of the English Travelers, via her sister, Chelsie.

I’m still thinking about a specific reward, but the satisfaction of being this focused is a huge motivating factor right now. I will be shooting for 150 points, thinking that will take me up to my birthday, if I work hard.

Want to join in? Check out Amber’s post for more details!

Is it going to be like it is here?

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It was bedtime, and we were wrapping up our evening with family devotions.

On this night, Truxton was ready with a barrage of questions.

When we see God when we go to live with Him, will he be wearing clothes?

When we live with God, will there be toys there?

What if a monster already got me and you and Mama and Gillian and we are already with God?

Does it take a long time to get to God when we die?

But if someone shoostes us, or kills us with a sword or a speared, then how are we going to get the blood off of us when we are with God?

With God, is it going to be like it is here, and will we still be all together?

Oh, sweet little boy.

In a way I am glad that he can’t imagine a life sweeter than his own, but we also want to instill a surety that it will be so much better than we can imagine.

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May God give us wisdom as we tend these little souls for Him.

Monday

It’s one of those Mondays. You know the kind – they come after a busy week and they lead the way into another busy week. They bring with them heaps of laundry and dishes, and cranky children and messy bedrooms. They often do not accommodate school schedules, naps, or well rested mothers. They often do accommodate freak accidents like pudgy baby fingers stuck in heat vents, chalk drawings on the floors, and leaking washing machines.

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It’s the kind of Monday where I consider breaking my habit of procrastination by watching a marathon of Downton Abby (because really, I have been meaning to start that series!)

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I decide to wash the towels, since we are all out of clean ones and it’s quite possible that one of the parents in this house might get a shower in at some point today.

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There’s a load in the dryer that has probably been there since sometime early last week. That explains where all of our napkins have been! I heap it out onto a kitchen chair because there are no empty laundry baskets to be found and sit and stare at it while I consume my second cup of coffee this morning.

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Gillian gets right to work on the laundry. Oh, the energy of the twenty one month old! As I admire her cuteness, I remember my recently formed (even still forming) conviction to express my gratitude in all things. I begin to thank Him for pudgy baby hands and cheeks, Gillian’s frizzy baby ‘fro, clean laundry, the warmth of the kitchen, the heaps of dishes reminding me that my children have full bellies, the health of my children.

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I am blessed beyond measure. I am loved by a good God.

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.

Nature Study – The Oppossum

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Nature study is an area that consistently suffers in our schooling, even though I was determined not to let it slide.

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So when the Xplor magazine showed up and peaked Kinsley’s interest in opossums, I decided to roll with it, mostly to assuage the guilty feeling of failure.

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The Handbook of Nature Study didn’t have anything on the opossum (Did I miss it? Are they not blessed with these chicken eatin’ varmints across the pond??) so we turned to youtube. Where we basically got distracted by cute possum videos for 45 minutes. I suffer from shiny object syndrome.

(I actually kind of feel like that mama possum sometimes.)

We learned that baby opossums are about the size of a kidney bean when they are born and that an entire litter can fit in a teaspoon. The gestation period is only 13 days, and they nurse without stopping for two solid months. They are the only marsupials in the US. Fascinating!

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Then we sketched us some ‘possum (this is acceptable grammar when discussing a possum, I believe).

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Then Kinsley read to us from The Adventures of Unc’ Billy Possum.

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She is quite the expressive reader!

I am motivated to do better at nature study again. For now.