Saturday, December 19, 2009

Ashley's Christmas wish list

Ashley brought home her Christmas wishes for our family yesterday. And I quote:

I sure hope my family to recieve these gifts for Christmas. I want Sara to get new art books. She could use them. John could use a new friend. I want Nathan to get drums. I want my mom to get a new oven. I want my dad to get a deer.

I must admit I'd love a convection oven. How did she know??

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Bells

So I have a new favorite Christmas carol this year. It started to grow on me last year and this year it is what my kids have heard the most...I heard the Bells on Christmas Day. It was originally a poem written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow during the American Civil War. The poem speaks of the despair felt within the world at Christmas and then his last line is full of our faith and hope. I've included 3 stanzas of the poem...the first, next to last and you can get the gist of it. I'm sure many of you have heard the song but maybe, like me, never paid much attention to the lyrics:

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)
Christmas Bells
I HEARD the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;
"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men."

Why I've been AWOL

My husband keenly observed the other day that I have been AWOL from my blog. Not sure why exactly. I honestly haven't been that busy. "What?!" I hear voices saying, "Not very busy?! Surely not this time of year!" But that is a true statement. I haven't been baking, caroling, doing Christmas cards, or any of that stuff. I haven't even been partying much...only one. For the first time in several years we didn't even do an open house. It's not that I planned it this way. It just kind of happened. I've been on the couch on and off since Thanksgiving and in some significant pain on and off. Most of that time we self-diagnosed it as a kidney stone. Here recently we've discovered that it is actually a couple of cysts that decided to show up and give me an early Christmas present that will include some surgery. This last week I wasn't even allowed to drive because of the pain medication. Joe got familiar with the carpool to and from school and I ran out of excuses for not doing the laundry. I was going to blog then, but seeing as it was difficult for me to even complete a sentence talking at times, I didn't think it so wise to post something while I was under the influence (so to speak). So this structured, planning person has had to be fairly flexible...including adjusting our travel plans. We'll be home sweet home this Christmas. It hasn't been as much of a bummer as it sounds. We have had some good times:

  • Lots of cups of homemade chocolate have gotten made and enjoyed around the dining room table.
  • We've read The Best Christmas Pageant Ever together. It is one of my all time favorite Christmas stories. Thanks to Sara's teacher, we got to borrow the movie and watch it tonight.
  • John and Ashley had their Christmas program at school this last week. Hopefully pictures will be forthcoming.
  • All the kids participated in our church's version of "the Christmas pageant". Nathan managed to stay on stage the entire time, not knock over any microphones or burn the church down with the advent candles, and entertain everyone so I call it a success.
  • Our tree is loaded with ornaments and memories of our kids. I am really starting to love our Christmas tree.
  • We've watched our share of all the Christmas specials. We've been saving A Charlie Brown Christmas for this weekend.
  • I've been so blessed by my "family" here who have come alongside and helped with the kids so much
  • And I cannot say enough good things about my husband...working his job and doing mine all at the same time. Not sure how he's kept all the balls in the air the last few weeks. He's doing an AWESOME job though!

So that's what's been going on with the Horn herd. I hope to get some pictures posted soon. Wishing you all a snuggly, snowy weekend before Christmas!