A Week, Briefly (12/25/17)

Just this morning Pixie said, "This has been such a good week!  First Christmas, then visiting cousins, then ice skating and lunch with the S---- boys (favorite friends since preschool days), then dance, then going to a movie, the dance tonight, and the party tomorrow.  I can't wait for 2018!!"

My week was quieter than that, but the teens truly did whirl their way through the last week of 2017.

Nature Angel got started pressing flowers with her Christmas gift flower press.

The Elementary 8 and I had Academy 5 straight days, and we had One-on-One school for 3 of those days.  It suited us well.

Little Princess got to work on her Christmas gift journaling/activity book.

On Friday we counted up our Christmas money from Grammie and Grampa and found we had enough to buy a family zoo pass--the really good one that includes all of the rides.  As it was the only day to reach higher than freezing in the whole week (and for the week ahead), it was a great day to visit the zoo.

Lined up, purely serendipitously, to look for the polar bear.

It ended in an awesome snowball fight between me and the kids . . . Sir Walter Scott was feeling the cold, and we had really bad aim, so he wandered off to see the tigers while the rest of us ran and shouted and threw snow. 

That makes him sound like a tired, old sourpuss, but he's really not.  :) <3 

I think he was having a hard day.

I appreciate his effort to be with us when his heart was heavy with other concerns.

As for me, the impromptu snowball fight was heart-lightening.  And the kids agreed that it was the best part of the day.

We didn't get to our family Nativity until Tuesday night!  But we did do it!  Here are this year's Joseph and Mary.

And these are the shepherds and sheep.

As for Academy, we picked up our books from before our Advent studies as if we'd never missed a beat.  We finished The Tempest for Kids by Lois Burdett, and we had a grand time choosing our favorite poems for one final visit out of Now We are Six by A.A. Milne.  We'll pull out a new poetry book in the new year. 

How grateful I am for children who love poems and love Shakespeare.  Every time I put The Tempest away, there were groans and pleas to "read just a little bit more." 

And I love hearing them discuss the characters and plot when they think I'm not listening.

We played with playdough a lot this week.  The extra person is the older brother of our little babysittee.  Due to complications in his usual care, he's joined his baby sister at our house once or twice a week.

Mister Man made this while he sang, "We are children, holding hands around the world . . ."

We had fun with puzzles.

The Bunch'ems are still providing endless delight.

I'm so grateful for our training in how to play outside this year, because even with below freezing temperatures, we've been bundling up and getting out and making the most of the snow, the ice, and the cold. 

Beowulf calls this "penguin skating."

There's no cabin fever here yet!

We went for a hike on Saturday afternoon.  It was SO. COLD.  But we ran around a lot, and we studied tracks, and we found a frozen waterfall!   Just as we got close enough to the waterfall for me to start saying, "Stay off the ice!" a train arrived, and the kids bolted for the train bridge so they could be under it when the train passed.  As they ran they yelled, "Hey!  We're like The Railway Children!  We ARE the Railway Children!"

(We finished reading Edith Nesbit's The Railway Children last week.)

And on Saturday night there was a New Year's Eve Eve church dance for the youth.  As Belle is finally 14, she got to go.

I requested a group photo of the girls before they left.

And I looked up a photo from 11 years ago . . . yes, I was there through all of the growing up, but it still takes my breath away that they could go from this:

to this:

They're still goofy girls at heart:

And they're only going to grow up all the more as the year turns this weekend.

Happy New Year!


  1. I takes my breath away to see picks of my kids when they were tiny too. It is just amazing how the years fly by. What a wonderful week and the zoo pass will be so much fun this coming year. I know we are very happy about our Biltmore Estate pass and watching the huge gardens and greenhouses change throughout the year. Praying that you have a wonderful new year.
    Blessings, Dawn

  2. OUTSTANDING comparison shots of the big girls!! They are so beautiful! And just FYI, I thought the first pic (the back of Nature Angel) was you!!

    1. Yeah, when I first opened the photo folder, had a quick flash of thinking the same thing. :)

  3. They sure do grow and change so quickly! Happy New Year!

  4. I'm tired just reading about your teens' week. They may be goofy but they are gorgeous. Looks like the rest of you have had a good week as well. Happy New Year.


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