Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Here is your very own handy dandy digital copy of our Christmas letter. Merry Christmas from our computer to yours. :)

We're Waiting... and Waiting...



Well, the tree is trimmed, the stockings are hung, and the lights twinkle merrily.

Last week, Jonathan frowned, “Um, Mom, I have a problem.”

“What’s that, Sweetie?” I asked.

“I really, really want presents,” he informed me.

“Well, that’s good,” I replied, “because you’re going to get some.”

“But Mom, Christmas doesn’t come for sixteen days!” he wailed.

Much too long to wait for presents. Obviously.

Remember being a small child? Remember the agony of waiting sixteen whole days until Christmas?

Remember the joy you felt as you wiggled your little toes in your little bed at 10 pm on Christmas Eve, waiting for morning?

Now imagine waiting four thousand years. That’s how long Israel waited for their Messiah before He was born a babe in Bethlehem.

No wonder the angels exploded into song! They’d been waiting millennia to shout to the earth, “Glory to God in the highest!”

But Christmas isn’t the only thing we’re waiting for.
The birth of Christ was just one part of God’s master plan. We are still longing with anticipation for the day Christ will come again. His birth, death and resurrection have enabled us to have “the hope of glory” (Col 1:27).

What a party that will be! Jonathan’s Christmas squeals and even the heavenly chorus at Christ’s birth will be nothing compared to all of creation being set free by Jesus Christ!

May this Christmas fill your heart with the reason Christmas exists in the first place:

Hope.

Jeff and Casper Reunited



This year, Jeff enjoyed managing our church facility and working as a general contractor.

One of his year’s highlights was bringing his dog, Casper, to our home.

Casper, a nine-year-old white Boxer, has stayed with Jeff’s parents on their farm off and on over the years, but he’s finally home with us to stay.

Casper is enjoying his retirement, enduring (and training) our Golden Retriever puppy, Rosy, faithfully protecting us, and hogging all the covers.

We’re very glad he’s here.

James: Loving First Grade This Time Around



James had a bit of an odd year — at least where school is concerned. Let me explain. James has an August birthday, so he turned five right before he went to kindergarten.

Kindergarten was tough, until the spring, when he caught right up.

Then James turned six right before he went to first grade, and again, he really struggled. It turned out he was nearly a year younger than most of his class, and it was a significant year, developmentally.

We all, and especially James, wanted him to go back to kindergarten. Last January, he did.

But this summer, our family agreed on another change. We decided to homeschool! For the first time, James is truly enjoying school. Our curriculum is literature-based, so we basically sit around reading books together and discussing what we read. James is your man if you’re curous about Greek myths. He knows them all.

Jonathan: Yo Tengo Cinco Anos



Beginning two weeks after his fourth birthday, Jonathan asked me every morning, “Am I five yet?”

After a while, he stopped asking, because he was convinced he would have to stay four forever.

But he is finally five. You can imagine how excited he is to thrust all five fingers toward whomever asks his age.

Jonathan is enjoying his laid-back preschool-at-home days, and he especially loves learning Spanish. Not only is he five, but he is “cinco!” He likes to send emails to his cousins, and he always makes me sign them, “From Jonathan, Age Cinco.”

Jonathan also loves to use big words. Today he used the word “portal” correctly in a sentence. His dad and I were what he would have termed “flabbergasted.” And if you ask him what “flabbergasted” means, he will tell you: “So surprised that you can’t think or talk.” And he’s right. We are.

A Peaceful Pace for Becky



In May, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. So I retired and slowed my life down.

Homeschooling is now the joy of my heart because of the face time it gives me with my children, who will leave home before I know it!

I sprinkle that with reading, writing, and blogging. I seek to encourage women online to look continually to their Abba Father and respect their husbands. I’m about to launch two additional focuses (beauty despite hirsutism, and facing fibromyalgia) on my soon-to-be-launched self-hosted WordPress blog, which will incorporate all of the above as well as my personal blog.

I pray the joy of being loved by your Abba Father brings peace to your life this next year.

Abba Stories