I am sitting here, the news on in the background, warm kitties by my feet, and kids still sleeping. Hubby is on his way to work at the Packer game for the 4H club horse project. He loves it. It is SO not me! I have been checking in on friends on facebook, doing some reading of good blogs and thinking about the upcoming year.
I am not real big on resolutions. Most of my resolutions are things that I have been working on anyway, so it seems silly. Some of what I would list are obvious. Getting our little girls safely home, homeschooling my kids, raising them to be responsible adults, raising them in faith, continuing to grow my own faith, organizing my home, decluttering, and enjoying life on the farm. I am puttering with two of our young horses, beginning some simple training with them. I even got a horse halter lesson yesterday! I want to see that we can all make a difference in the world. Small or big, it changes over time, and it ALL matters.
I would say that I am always on the outlook for organizational strategies - face it - there are ten of us in the home and I dearly love books. Real life gets really busy, and some things fall by the wayside. Keeping life simple makes it much easier to manage.
I also want to be writing more. I keep working on it. I live my life around our home. We have seasons where I have worked out of the house at some points - to achieve a goal, but I am fully based at home at this point. We have again restructured, and I will only work on weekends when hubby is totally home. It is where our hearts are. God has laid this journey before us, and we will walk it gladly.
We are paring things down - we were blessed with a flat screen TV (and the kids with a PS3 from their FAVORITE aunt) so we have a 32 inch tv to go, and we had a 19 inch left over from our fundraising rummage sale - so if you want one, I would so gladly get it out - any funds go into our flight fund for our next trip to Ethiopia! And we also have a gorgeous cherry entertainment center - a corner center, double top doors and storage below - that needs to go (the new TV doesn't fit and dear hubby is going to build us a smaller one that will fit the new tv). I will be posting it on craigslist and all as we declutter.
God has been very clear with us "use what you have" and that He will provide for further needs. We for years saved clothes many sizes ahead for the kids - we don't anymore - except maybe some things for the little girls! God has always provided right when we needed it! Either we found great sales, our favorite thrift shop was a great source, we found a treasure trove rummage sale-ing or we were blessed with hand me downs - always so much nicer than we would ever expect or dream of (it got my kids to love American Eagle and Aeropostle). We have never been low. The provision - either the funds we need or a surprise blessing has always been there - and yes, we do budget for it! (But you can't really budget for all five boys outgrowing something all at the same time! They do pass things down, but many things simply just get worn out from the heavy use of boys!)
I am also working on cooking more - not in quantity, that is the usual, but in the last year, the kids have been cooking quite a bit, which is great, but I want to have freezer meals ahead, and to cook because I love it. Actually, I love hearing my kids enjoying something I made for them. Sourdough bread, friendship breads, and whatever else I can learn about. There are so many things to do health wise that just everyone should be doing, but it takes time.
And I look forward to seeing my kids minds and knowledge expand! Homeschooling lets me walk this road with them, and to alter it as each may or may not need a somewhat different path. I keep looking into virtual school, but I just don't see that it has the flexibility to meet our needs in life. Our life is very eclectic. Each kid has very eclectic needs. So, being able to modify it as we go, well, that is a huge benefit to it. I don't know how to try to make a public school person understand it. So, we are still doing it the way we have, which is structured and unstructured, active and interesting. I am glad that one of my goals for last year was accomplished - the kids are reading more! We have a schedule where they are reading a book a week and doing a book report (way to make them accountable). If they choose a more challenging book, or longer book, then we can adjust the due date for something reasonable - but it is also about teaching them time management, setting goals and completing a longer term task. Anyway, that is a big deal for us!
Well, I may ramble some days about the progresses we make in life. One thing I want to do is read a challenging book myself each month - I read a ton, but quite often it is more fluff stuff for entertainment. I am half way through Kisses From Katie by Katie Davis, and it is wonderful. I borrowed it, but will have to buy it as it will be required reading for my kids! We need to always keep ourselves challenged and reminded of what is really important in life, what God has called us to. How we live out our faith, our devotion to God.
Well, I had better get the kids moving, start our New Years morning celebrations and chores. And then I get the Ethiopian food started simmering!!!!!! Whoo-hoo!!!! Injera, misir wat, doro wat. And veggies!!!! Whoo-hoo!!!! Laundry to go, doing chores through a snowstorm and wind. LOL! Life on the farm! We bedded down the animals tight knowing that this was coming, but I am not looking forward to going outside!!! Brrrr!!!!!! And I ripped my last pair of flannel lined jeans! Drat! I am going to try to figure out how to repair and patch, but it won't be pretty - not like it matters!!! Oh, yes, and sewing with my girls! Lots going on!
Happy New Year! May God bless you and your family richly!
"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans for hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11