Thursday, October 2, 2008

Christmas books and such

*Originally posted on December 4, 2007

Judy Elliott has done a phenomenal job of creating an Amazon list full of wonderful Ambleside literature. She has the books listed out by AO Years as well as by subject. There are fantastic selections for Christmas and Advent books, too! Check out her Amazon list here.

For some other great Christmas stories, here’s a link to a free text of the 1914 printing of Good Stories for Great Holidays on Baldwin’s Project website. What a gem... and it's free! :)

Also, if you haven’t heard of ‘Hearts and Trees’ Winter Craft Kit, you’ve got to order one! We purchased 2 Fall Kits back a few months ago and the girls loved them! It includes so many fun things to do as well as simple instructions to go with the kit. My girls still point out “warm colors” and notice the leaves, nature, etc. because of the lessons and crafts in the great Fall Kit. *You need to order by Dec. 7th in order to be “guaranteed” a Winter Kit… after that, it’s first come first serve and I’m sure she’ll sell out! Great price and great kit... check out their website for more details while supplies last! (Did that sound like an info-mercial or what?!?! lol! )

One last wonderful link, this time from You Tube: this a capella men's choir is sure to put a smile on your face and a Christmas cheer in your heart. I think even the Grinch would be moved by this performance! :)

We went to a wonderful performance of the “Nutcracker Ballet” Sunday night. The girls truly enjoyed themselves. Gosh, Tchaikovsky is such an incredible composer… the girls couldn’t help but dance around during intermission! Erich pointed out that homeschooling has allowed our schedule so much more freedom to take the girls on fun events and field trips. For example, in the last month we’ve visited a wildlife preserve, gone roller skating, the girls did a Dad/Daughter craft project with our homeschool group, we went on an educational “Hands on Science” field trip, had fun bowling, went to the Audie Murphy museum, visited the Mary of Puddin’ Hill candy factory, saw a Nutcracker puppet show, experienced the Nutcracker ballet, and today just got back from a Little House Christmas play. WOW! The girls are having a blast doing all these fun events and field trips together in addition to all the wonderful things they've been learning in school! They wouldn’t have these opportunities if they were still at their former school. Time flies by so fast when your children are little, and it’s such a blessing to feel like we’re slowing down and able to experience so much more together as a family.

We read The Gift of the Magi last night before Erich led our Advent study. The girls were really touched that the characters had “sacrificed” so much in order to give gifts to each other… all to just realize that they couldn’t use the gifts after all. It was a perfect segue into our bible study on God looking at our hearts instead of looking at outward appearances like we do. (1 Sam. 16:7) It’s more important what the motives of our hearts are… just like The Gift of the Magi… in the end, the gifts were useless, but what really mattered was that their hearts were willing to let go of their most valuable possession for the sake of the other person. What a perfect Christmas Story!

Have a blessed day!

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