Sunday, January 12, 2014

January's Simple Joys

 We were only 8 days into the new year when our Storyteller sweetly informed me that I blew all of my hopes of earning the Mother of the Year Award for 2014.  
I forgot to make supper - gulp!
  Pretty serious stuff for a growing 13 year old athlete. 
I was busy in my sewing room and time simply slipped away. 
So many of my good intentions for this lovely new year are already behind schedule,
 and I couldn't be more contented.

Like the Mother of the Year thing - I mean - whew! Now the pressure is totally OFF! 
I can just be mama -  loving my family and making mistakes daily. Receiving beautiful mercies each new day from the Maker of my days, and handing out grace and forgiveness to my precious family when they make mistakes too.

I'm not big on resolutions, but I certainly have a lot of yearly goals.  I like lists. 
I really like checking things off my list when they are done!
 I added 'choose a {life changing} WORD for 2014' to my December list, but then I ended up coming to the conclusion that there are too many good words to choose from. 
One word is simply too limiting.
 I started searching The Word and chose wonderful Scripture verses to focus on for this year instead. 

I took choosing 'A Word' off my list and added 'take THE Word to heart' instead.

I felt badly about not following so many awesome bloggers and about half my Facebook friends with the choosing a Word thing at first, but I had to think about why I was feeling so pressured.

From my experience when it is something that 'everyone else is doing' it usually isn't something that draws me closer to God. If it's popular in 'evangelical Christian circles' or embraced by the world, it's not likely helping me line up my life with the Word of God 
- more often it's just another good looking 'something' to keep me busy at nothing.

 It's the hard things, the uncomfortable things, the unpopular choices that I look for to grow me into the woman God wants me to be. I have so much to learn about the Word, so much to deal with in my own life, so much maturing to do - I just don't have time or energy for following the crowd or being busy with nothing.


Life is so full of things to be thankful for right now. 
I've been feeling so much better so much of the time. 
A warm home in the midst of this cold snap has been high on my list of things to praise the Lord for in the last couple of weeks. Just knowing God's care for our needs has been a blessing. 
Having layers and layers of warm clothes and blankets and lots of hot soup and tea to keep us all warmed and fed. I was never so thankful for my deep pantry than when the Historian went to the store for milk and eggs and found many of the shelves bare or nearly so as another storm approached. 

Even our ancient furnace co-operated and did it's very best to blast out warmth to keep the chill at bay.  I really think we need to look for an alternate source of heat and I'm thinking our unusable fireplace might be the answer if we could get a wood burning insert installed.  I added that to the Home Projects 2014 list.

I loved not having to go anywhere during the worst of the ice and cold - just being at home together and doing our school work.  The Historian went to work each day, but with short days and longer mornings at home with us waiting for the roads to be cleared. Home, school, cooking, taking down Christmas and putting everything away in the attic for another year. 
Simple pleasures. 

Saying 'yes' to more Wii and computer time then usual to fill in some hours and even clearing out space in our 'no toys, no food, NO messes'  front room for jumping rope - of all things! 
With high energies and limited places in our home to expend those energies, I decided it was for the best.

We had to heat the Grammy Flat more than usual to keep the pipes from freezing out there, and of course we kept the tap drip- drip- dripping. With it warm and toasty out there, is was a quiet restful blessing to dig through my pile of mending and projects and to start the process of cleaning out every drawer and cupboard. I love having my sewing stuff out there - it's so quiet and peaceful.

I am trying very hard once again to thin out our home and keep only those things which I love or find useful. Dreamer is catching on and has done some serious thinning in her room too. We can't get the guys on board, but they are focused basketball right now, so we'll try again when the season is over. Our Storyteller is playing for the Miami Valley Saints Homeschool basketball team and he is loving it! 
He is learning so much and growing in so many ways.

About 20 years ago my Great Aunt Gertie handed me a stack of pretty linens.  A lovely creamy yellow bullion rose runner that she made in the 1920's for her hope chest was among the pile and it was love at first sight. I used it in our home until it got raggy and torn, then tucked it away because I could not bear to throw it out or use it for a rag.

As I cleaned out a mending basket I saw the ratty runner and decided to rescue a portion of it to re-make a sweet little lampshade for a tiny thrifted lamp that cheers my kitchen counter.  I also found the bulldog clips and step-by-step guide to covering lampshades that I was given at a shade making class years and years ago {maybe 20?}. So fun to re-learn an old skill and make something pretty from something ruined. I turned the last bit into a small zippered case using a vintage metal zipper closure and adding a bit of my own hand stitching. Dreamer and I have decided a white linen cosmetic bag is a bit impractical, but we both loved it!

So many sweet friends have asked if I'll blog regularly again. 
I'd like to. I hope to - my goal is at least twice a month, but we're just in a season where life is happening faster than I can keep up with it sometimes. I will put it on my list and see what happens!  
In the meantime, I'll try to spruce things up a bit and make it a prettier place to visit for those of you who do drop by. I always appreciate your sweet an thoughtful comments and your faithful friendships.