Tuesday, November 17, 2009

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Just sitting here compiling and enjoying my http://www.playlist.com/ Christmas playlist. I sneak Christmas in a little bit everyday! I know that a lot of people struggle with Christmas being out in the stores WAY before Christmas. It's what stores do -- sell things! It doesn't bother me because I'm thinking about Christmas gifts in September (do I start my crafts then, when I should? No! In fact, I haven't started yet, and it's 30+ days away!) We don't do anything with Halloween, and for me it doesn't take away from Thanksgiving either. As believers, we should be thanking Him everyday for our blessings anyway! We don't save it all for one day of the year, do we? I hope not! And what are we MOST thankful for? A REDEEMER! So to me, it's all one big holiday celebration to honor our God and King!!

We love our new car, Mark! For us, it's like a brand new car! Still no camera, so still no pictures. Jim's hinted that we might replace our digital camera with an upgraded model! YAY! I don't think they make the model that we have anymore: Fuji Finepix S5200.

Haven't figured out yet what I'm going to do about a family Christmas photo. I think I'm going to ask my sisters to take pictures at our annual Thanksgiving family dinner. We'll get together the Sunday after Thanksgiving for a traditional turkey dinner. I our home, on Thursday, we've decided to make homemade pizza a tradition for Thanksgiving! This will be our 3rd year. We'll have our family dinner at Donna's on Sunday. The day AFTER I'll make a roast chicken and have the traditional sides. (Jim and I prefer chicken over turkey). It's always nice to eat "leftovers".

I better start putting together my yearly Christmas letter! In the past I've kept notes in a word processing document of what's happening during the year. This year, I forgot. So I'll just have to go by memory.

Nathan's latest passion is learning about raising ducks! He wants to start in the spring, but I don't know if we really can do anything here. There's just so little room on our lot. Half our lot is taken up by the house and "parking lot". Everyday we read the duck-raising book together. It's his choice to do it with me. He also enjoys Bible reading with me. Again, his idea. We're both reading the book of Luke, so he asked me a week or so ago if we could read it together. We're also trying to get devotions in during the day instead of at night. We always seem to run out of time, and we're in a hurry to get through them. It shouldn't be that way. I really enjoy reading allowed to the older boys after Owen goes to bed, but we haven't had time to do that lately. The book we're reading is Carry On Mr. Bowditch.

Speaking of reading allowed, Owen wants me to read Jotham's Journey to him this year. Jim and I have talked about it. Jared was almost 6 when I started to read it with them. We're considering it. Jim actually doesn't think it'll be a problem. I know that some people won't agree with that; but we as parents know our own children better than anybody. I know what he can and can't handle. If I find there's a part that just won't do, I'll skip over it. I also want to purchase the next book in this series Bartholomew's Passage.

Nathan's making our own Advent candles this year. I bought the boys a candle-making kit last spring. It has metal votive candle molds. So this year we'll use votive candles instead of tapered ones.

Last year in my Christmas letter, I mentioned how Jared was FINALLY a real reader. I was so excited because, before that, I couldn't get him to read more than one book here and there. He was really into reading Hardy Boys books last Christmas time. Unfortunately, the spark fizzled out right after I wrote the letter!!! It's taken him pretty much all year to get that spark back. Now I think it's here to stay! Because he's not a fast reader, I think it's been discouraging for him. Although he reads his Bible daily, I don't think its the same as reading for entertainment. Besides, Jared is busy doing other things in the summer.

I'm considering letting Nathan start blogging. I'm not sure how yet. I'm reading about kids learning through blogging. It's also a way for kids to share their interests and projects with family and friends. It's also good for typing and language arts skills!

Went to our local thrift store last weekend for the first time in ages. Hit a jackpot. For $2, we bought 1 Hardy Boys double feature book (Jared's thrilled), 2 decorative votive candle holders (for Nathan to use for Christmas gifts), 2 decks of cards (for Nathan's card collection)1 Scrabble game (see picture below) 1 shirt for Owen (the reason why they gave it away is because the collar is crooked! It'll be fine for play around the house! Lately he's been a cowboy, so his bandana covers it completely!)

I just love dimensional decorating with letters!

I love my new Christmas tree embossing folder!

I'm going to try and add an old picture -- from my childhood or of our ancestors with each blog post...

My mother's maternal grandmother,
Maria Toth Graf

Until next time...

blessings, joie

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