Monday, December 31, 2007
New Years Blessings!
Here we are on the last afternoon of 2007! The eve of a New Year is a special time for our family as we reflect on the many blessings of the past year and make goals and plans for the coming year. We always enjoying making our plans, fully realizing that our lives are in God's hands and our plans are subject to change! It is good to make goals - after all 'aim at nothing and you are sure to hit it' has been a theme oft repeated in my growing up years. We like to look at character goals and see how much progress we can see in an area of former weakness. For example, last year at this time, one of our children, who shall remain nameless, was really struggling with untruthfulness, and this year we see such an improvement in that area. It is so very encouraging to see our children grow and mature, but we also make these types of character goals for ourselves, since we are still in the process of maturing to be more like Christ, even in our 'advanced years'!
We also make goals for home improvements and personal goals as well, but keeping them within reason and making sure they are 'do-able' encourages us to actually achieve our stated goals and enjoy the feeling of success that brings. I think it is great to aim for something that you know is within reach, rather than make unreasonable goals, which always end up just being a waste of time for me!
I am planning to re-vamp my spring cleaning plan this year and get started a little earlier since I now know that spring comes quickly to our little corner of the mid-west and the garden calls me out doors just as soon as the soil begins to warm. The past two springs have found me trying to clean the house from stem to stern, clean up the garden, plant, and finish the school semester with the children - a bit too much at once. This year we are also hoping to get a bit more systematic with our family Scripture reading and memorizing, since the business of health issues in the fall sort of side tracked that goal. I've decided not feel guilty about that small failure - just pick up where we left off and go forward.
Our community 'First Night' celebration has been canceled due to lack of volunteers, which is a real shame since we throughly enjoyed the celebration in past years. We thought about renting a fun video but our t.v. which was my grandfather's for a number of years before we inherited it, has finally died, and our van is experiencing transmission trouble! My parents are here for a visit, which is wonderful, but I feel badly that everything is on the fritz just now! We will be making our own fun for New Year's Eve - perhaps pull some taffy, play some games and stay up late before praying in the New Year and going to bed. We're not big party people, but if all of our water problems hadn't occurred just before Christmas, we might have had a few friends in for the occasion. As it is, we are still in a bit of a mess and are looking forward to having everything put back in it's place. The flooring in our utility closet must be replaced which involves lifting the furnace - a big job to say the least! The furnace is currently working, but it is 'on the lean' as the flooring's integrity has been compromised.
The first few weeks of the New Year will be busy with doctor's appointments for me, and the resuming of regular activities. I am also looking through recipe books and planning to try out at least one new recipe each week, as I do every January. Last years picks resulted in a few new family favorites, so I hope I am as successful this year. I was rather hit and miss last January, because of my health, but I spread the weeks out and thus made my goal of trying new things more achievable, which was a blessing!
I've just pulled some fresh bread from the oven, and need to run a loaf over to Mr. Neighbor while it is still warm. Tonight dinner is simple grilled chicken salad with and fresh bread - since we will be snacking later on cheese ball and shrimp, I am sure a light supper will be appreciated.
I do hope that your New Year is a time of learning and growth, that your trials strengthen your relationship with God, and that above all you know the deep and abiding joy of walking with God day by day - come what may. Peace and happiness to you my friends!