What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

2008, Year of our Lord

Happy new Day! Happy new month! Happy NEW YEAR!

The end is but the beginning.

Looking back on this year I think I would call it a very...calm year.

Nothing tragic.

Nothing amazing.

We had struggles, we persevered. We had everyday joys, we recognized. We had questions, we prayed.

I was trying to think about all the wonderful things that happened in 2007, and there are many. Some of the most meaningful things that pop into my head happened just recently.

~ An insistent Panda, demanding to hold my hand the entire time on walks.

~ Corynn's four year old voice floating to the heavens in praise as she sings God songs she has created for him.

~ Not having to move out of our house this year.

~ The reminder of the intricate web of God's plans entangling our lives with the lives of our brothers and sisters, the good gifts He gives to His people, and the generosity of spirit that those who share a love for God posess. All this, through the giving (and in my case) receiving a sewing machine when I had none.

~ The loyalty of my husband.

~ The clarity I was given, despite many odds, in regards to my view of children and their place in the covenant, even in the face of adversity.

~The yearning of, saving for, and eventual purchase of my dream camera...something I have wanted for many years now.

So you see, 2007 was filled with many wonderful things. Treasures. For which I am so very thankful!

One thing I always try to do at the onset of the new year is to think about all the things I wanted to accomplish in the previous year. It is a good thing to reflect on your strengths, weaknesses, and to assess any progress made.

This year I am very VERY happy that it seems I did attain all my goals! This is the first year where I am truly PLEASED with the results.

I have worked hard keeping the house at least tidy. I am capable of inviting people in unexpectedly now-and it is a GOOD feeling!

I have made much progress in waking up with Mattie each morning, exercising, and having personal time for devotions and reflection.

Many things have been created in my craft room and now reside in my home and in the homes of others. Crocheting is still a learning process but I have made things like a blanket, sweater, booties, hats. This is HUGE for me because I never EVER expected to make anything with a SHAPE! :-)

I have made progress in my journey to get rid of 'excess' in our home and in my quest to make things from scratch.

Obviously these things still need MORE work. I happen to weigh more now than I ever have before. We still order pizzas and go out to eat occasionally. Sometimes I sleep in because I just can't escape the warmth of my flannel sheets! I didn't complete Matt's crocheted afghan in time for Christmas and probably won't complete it for his birthday (who knew a queen size afghan would be so much WORK!?!?!) My Etsy shoppe is hardly ever updated! All in all, though, real progress has been made and I am very pleased and proud of myself!

So-what are my goals for 2008?

I really have only two main goals for this coming year, but these will consume my time fully so I would do well to limit myself to just these two.

First~ I have failed and failed MISERABLY at setting aside school time for Corynn. Some days I do well...and then weeks go by and I wonder where the time went and why I so selfishly used it away on other much less important things. This year I really MUST get this schooling thing downpat. I won't vow to have her reading by the end of the year (as I wanted to do LAST year)-though I hope it is so. I won't vow to cover all subjects or reach any particular level. I vow only to try to become CONSISTENT and self-disciplined in this area, setting aside time each day to work on school. Soon, VERY soon, I will not have an option!

Secondly, yet another area that I have failed and failed miserably at is in the area of finances. While I have rid ourselves of the black cloud of debt, I have not been able to set money aside to save for a particular purpose. This year I am going to concentrate on growing our savings account. A house, among other things, we pray are in our future and so there is much to prepare for! Perhaps I will expound upon my battleplan in this area. Would that be something that is worthwhile to blog about, I wonder?

Of course, while I could see progress in last years goals, there is still much progress yet to be made so these things I will also continue to work on. But schooling and finances are HUGE things that NEED to be mastered.

Funny. If you think of finances and schooling apple-laden branches, then the tree trunk would be self-discipline.

Here's to a New Year!

And Here's to God giving us the strength and ability TO accomplish.

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me..."

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Elizabeth Joy said...

Excellent! Happy 2008! I love the quilt your precious ones are frolicking on. Did you make it?

Rebecca said...

Matt's Grandmother and Great Aunt made it for us as a wedding present. Needless to say, it is one of our most treasured things! :-)

Andie said...

Rebecca...here I thought I finally had my blog all caught up. Now I have an idea for a similar post...what do I want to accomplish in 2008...
Your goals sound great, I know you can accomplish them!
I answered your homeschooling question in the comments after your comment, if you are interested. :o)
Blessings to you in 2008!!!

Morning said...

I do agree with you Rebecca -- self discipline is an enormous thing, and the basis of so much that can make you happy. That's one of my resolutions, too, this year -- be firm with myself with bedtimes, eating well, exercising and blood sugars. It comes down to valuing oneself, really, doesn't it?
Oh, and beautiful quilt!

Elizabeth said...

Happy New Year Rebecca, May all your Goals Come True :)

Anonymous said...

Dear Rebecca,

I also thought, "Wow!" when I saw the quilt...I have a huge bin of scraps that would be great worked into a log cabin like that. I won't even dare to set THAT as a goal for '08... my sewing room full of unfinished projects is why!

Also, if I could pass on a bit of unsolicited advice...I want to reassure you about your commitment to teaching Corynn. I am no expert - I'm only in my 8th year of homeschooling, but I've come to realize there are just a few keys to teaching your own children. First... read to them! Read every day. Read things YOU enjoy reading TO them. If you can't stand Dr. Suess (like me), throw them out and find something else. They will learn so much from listening to you, and children who are consistently read to pick up reading on their own much faster, not to mention vocabulary building, listening skills, and just pure fun! Second...you, as an adult, must have a love of learning. Whether it's new recipes, learning to crochet, or learning a new language, be sure your children see you actively pursuing learning in your own life. Make learning something you're passionate about, and they will be, too. And third... you don't have to do a mini version of public school at home. Your "school" experience with your kids probably will, and should, look entirely different from what you experienced yourself. Basically, learning becomes intertwined throughout each and every day in many different ways. Don't think, "I have to DO SCHOOL from 8:00 to 3:00!" Corynn is still so young... and you are not accountable to the school district until she's 8, so just ease her into a few learning activities, with emphasis on reading GOOD BOOKS, and I'm sure she'll do just great!!! (And it's obvious from your blog that you're already doing SO MANY wonderful things with them... giving them a rich home life... don't stress about it! You're already headed in the right direction!)

And, the dollhouse is amazing! I've added one to my hubby's "to-do" list, just as soon as we get our house built. Ha! Ha! If we can ever arrange a get-together, I'll have him take some measurements, if you don't mind!

Sending you wishes for the New Year for peace, joy, and love.

Kris Zerby

Jess said...

what great pictures...best wishes in 2008! I will be praying your reach all your goals!

abigail said...

Becky introduced me to the CVS game, and it's been a whirl to get to the register with a pile of stuff, three children, and two fistfuls of coupons!

Good for you for making financial goals and pinching pennies with a purpose. The end is well worth the means!