Category Archives: Holidays

When Does School Start?

Don’t tell the children – we aren’t going to fully begin school until Monday.


We’ve been doing a little math here and some reading there, but nothing serious. It’s not completely my fault. Oh, I wanted to get back on track, waking up early and hitting those books with a jam-packed schedule, but the house has been full of children ever since New Year’s Day.

And I’m not talking about the five who live here.

Let’s see, New Year’s Day we had a party. The evening came to an end much too soon so we begged to have the five P. children over for the night. They stayed until mid morning Wednesday when I returned them to their (very cheerful and refreshed looking) mother. I couldn’t just ‘drop and run,’ I had to stay for a little visit. Just being polite, you understand. There went the morning and lunch time.

stuffing their faces?

In the afternoon another friend called to see if she could come over for coffee and computer work (two of my favorite things). I somehow managed to end my exciting school planning session and welcome her crew of kiddos.

No school.

Today we had MORE visitors. Some dear friends are home from serving in Africa for a year. The parents had a meeting today and the two boys needed a place to go.

let's play a game

Joshua and the boys played an incredibly LONG game of Axis and Allies.

You see how we suffer, forced to sleep in every morning and then visit with friends all day.

Kids galore and no school, it’s a difficult life.

Of course, Monday is going to hit everyone pretty hard. This late night blogger is going to feel it the most, I’m afraid. I have a LOT to do before then.

  1. Christmas cards to finish (don’t worry, I’ve started calling them Happy New Year cards).
  2. Pictures to upload for our 2007 Family Newsletter (the one I’m pointing everyone to on our New Year’s cards)
  3. A school schedule to plan.
  4. Chore charts to type up
  5. Some curriculum to order
  6. A new blogging plan (one that actually allows me to get some sleep) to discover.

And that’s not including the general laundry, house cleaning, and meal prep that requires constant attention.

Fire up the French Press and pass the coffee beans!

How about your family? When does your school (home or otherwise) resume? Did your children go back to school Wednesday? Anyone else easing into school a little slowly? Do you think a true night owl can get to bed early enough to wake up before 8 am on a regular basis? What time does your homeschool begin?

can we go to the beach?

It’s much too rainy and gray here in WA, let’s move this game to Lake Michigan. Um, you boys are a little over-dressed for the beach!

Gotta love that Photoshop! :)

Project 366 – Day 3

Share or follow

Related posts:

The Splendor of Christmas

One of the great things about having a large family and many generous relatives, is that Christmas gift-opening lasts practically forever. We’ve been concentrating on out-of-town relatives today, since people start to wonder by the end of the Christmas week (when you don’t mention their gift) if there was some kind of a mishap in shipping.

The problem is that many of our relatives are the careful, send-packages-early sort — the kind that make the temporally-challenged rest of us seem very slapdash and irresponsible. Their gifts were delivered much earlier in the month and so were at the bottom of the pile, covered up by Johnny-come-lately gifts purchased locally late in the day on the 24th. Now that we’ve worked our way down, the tops of these packages accuse us reproachfully, and so we rushed to open them.

Horn-warmers, the perfect gift
Gifts from Thailand and Norway, brought together with Daniel’s unique touch.

So many have been so generous to us, I feel rather shamefaced, especially when I think of less privileged people around the world. Then again, when I consider how these gifts reflect the love that is lavished upon us, I’m less embarrassed by the splendor, but rather I’m challenged to think of ways that we can splash that splendid love on others.

Purple in Pigtails
Now that Sarah knows her reindeer name (Prancer), it is killing her to wait to open a few last presents.

It is a glorious season, and our hearts are full of gratitude and thankfulness to the One who has made all this love and delight possible — our Lord, Jesus Christ.

Project 365 — Day 362

Share or follow

Related posts:

Making Christmas Last

We stretch celebrations out as long as possible in our house. Birthdays can last a week or two or even longer if you are careful. We’re certainly not done with Christmas yet. There are many presents still under the tree and others that haven’t arrived yet. We open presents S*L*O*W*L*Y around here.

We do, however, try to start thank you notesright away.

i wish to thank the academy

With a large family (each of whom buy for every member) we end up with an impressive collection of gifts. Since we also take time to focus on each person as they open their presents and stop after a bit to PLAY with the new toys, present opening takes a LONG time. I love gifts and surprises so I encourage everyone to savor the experience.

david's new helicopter

Unfortunately, all of this savoring and celebrating means I am quite behind on my Christmas cards. At what point to they become Happy New Year cards? I’m in the “I’s” but that still leaves a LOT of people left on our address list. Also, I have to finish the 2007 Christmas newsletter. In our Christmas cards, I’ve been directing people here to the blog. This would normally be great, but it would be nice if I had something for them to actually see. I have the newsletter part written. It’s not very witty or clever but it does a decent job or summarizing our year. I’m in the process of adding pictures. I made it through April this afternoon.

My goals for the weekend – edit and complete the newsletter and finish another (large) chunk of Christmas cards.

What about you? Are you taking Christmas decorations down this week? Starting homeschool back up? Dancing with your beloved under the twinkling Christmas lights? Did you finish your Christmas/holiday cards? Do share!

sarah loves her present

Project 365 – Day 361

Share or follow

Related posts:

Merry Christmas to Me!

It’s important to create a little suspense and anticipation on the blog. Keep people hungry (and that’s a difficult thing during the holidays) for more.

Here’s a little clue about my new present.

give a girl a big stick

Obviously this picture creates more questions than it answers:

  • Tim and Kathy’s folks are a little stingy and got her a new hat and scarf for Christmas.
  • Kathy’s tastes are simple and she is “thrilled, tickled, delighted and excited” about winter wear.
  • Kathy needs a haircut and some time at the salon
  • Tim went all out and carved Kathy a new walking stick for the holidays

Perhaps this is a better clue (this is fun, right?), the hint is not what’s IN the picture but the picture ITSELF.

Did you guess?
I know, this is killing you.
Okay, you’re bored silly and wish I would just get on with the blog and post some other cute pictures (preferably of the children).

Tim and my parents decided taking 11 thousand pictures this past year, give or take a thousand, proved I really was interested in photography. They put their heads (and cash) together and treated me to a wonderful new camera.

A fancy, schmancy new digital SLR camera by Nikon.

I picked up the “fancy, schmancy” name from Cindy who also received a new camera for Christmas. Mine is a Nikon D40X – the name alone sounds cool and impressive.

Tim got a fantastic deal and then went back and convinced the sellers to drop the price even further (he threw around the words price matching and Nutella, it’s a powerful combination).

I was totally surprised and amazed. Now I can take “real” pictures and turn this blog into something truly special.

Oh, the pressure is on now.

I am still learning about all the different settings and options. We took around 400 pictures between 1 pm Christmas day and 6 pm Wednesday. At that rate we’d hit something like 73K pictures in the upcoming year.


It’s a good thing I have one of these on hand. Nothing like a nice, little external hard drive to store your photos.

Joshua, Tim and I had a great time using the action function of the new camera to take some shots of the kids sledding this morning.

sarah's gonna sledwait for melet me fix my hair firstoh yeah, this is fun

I’d love to hear from other Nikon photographers – share your comments, tips, favorite lens, books, etc. I want to learn everything!! I think I need to add the Nikon D40X field guide to my Amazon wish list.

Now to find the perfect camera bag. This one in chocolate brown by Jill*e is gorgeous but seems a wee bit pricey.

Happy shooting!
Project 365 – Day 360

Thanks, Carl, for encouraging Tim to consider this camera.

Share or follow

Related posts:

Merry Christmas

The children tell me I haven’t written a blog “in, like forever, Mom.” I can’t imagine what Tim and I have been up to, over the last few days. :)

Merry Christmas!! The rain is softly falling. It was snowing an hour ago but, this being Washington, we must bow to the inevitable as it and turns to rain.

“I’m dreaming of a rainy Christmas.”
That’s what we sing around here.

Viking Christmas
Thanks to all the rain, a longship was able to beach near our home, and we were forced to entertain a shipload of Vikings.

Well, maybe not.

We’re having a wonderful Christmas day. There is wrapping paper everywhere (always a good sign) and more presents under the tree. Tim and my parents connived to surprise me with an incredible Christmas gift. I’m thrilled, delighted, tickled, and excited.

Gingerbread Demolition
Sarah reluctantly agreed that we could eat the Gingerbread House that she built … Daniel was only to ready to oblige.

As is our tradition, we all slept in the family room on Christmas Eve, watching a Christmas movie late into the night, each child trying to stay awake long enough to catch a parent in the act of filling the stockings. “Saint Nicholas, my foot!” they snicker. “I remember Daddy tripping over Daniel last year — Saint Nick needs to wear night-vision goggles or something.”

Baskin Robbins certificates
Any Christmas with Baskin Robbins gift certificates is a good Christmas. Thank you, Mamie and Grand-dad!

We enjoyed a delightful service at church, singing Christmas carols and a good sermon, explaining why Jesus came to earth, as the Light of the World:

  • To let us know what God is like
  • To inform us of God’s loving plan
  • To guide our steps in this life
  • To handle the problem of our sin
  • To transform our lives

Candle light service
Sarah held her candle so carefully, there was no chance of lighting anyone’s hair on fire.

We are so grateful to our Lord and King, Jesus the Christ, for coming to earth as a helpless baby to save us from our sins. As we savor our new gifts and the delight in the eyes of our loved ones, we remember the King of Love who makes it all possible, and whose glorious birthday we honor. We are thankful for this precious Prince of Peace, who came, even when we were enemies to Him, so that we could be reconciled with God.

Merry Christmas to all!

Share or follow

Related posts: