Beautiful Day

Thursday, May 1, 2014

The Adventures of April

Time for our "Month in Pictures" report.  This is always a rather full time of year, but full in many good ways.  

The annual fiddle convention was a fun gathering.  Over the weekend we participated in the public show and the girls took part in a wonderful Scottish fiddle workshop by the very talented Hanneke Cassel.  At last month's contest, we discovered these brothers who play a French-Canadian Style of old-time fiddle music.  Yes, they sing in French and their music is quite fun!  Our children even think one of them looks very much like their uncle!.

Country Girl (with backup by Tender Warrior) played a tune at the request of the association as the current state Young Adult Fiddle Champion.  She and Adventure Girl also played a twin fiddle piece.  I always love being the listening, cheering mama!

Early in the month I finished this simple, but cute and comfy, nightgown for my Princess Girl.  This is the age when they can no longer fit into those nice cotton pajamas that Carter's makes, and the older girl pajamas are very trendy and not very lovely or modest.  So we made our own.  I adapted this pattern, and was pleased that it turned out well.  I think she is quite happy.

While my olders were out fiddling, my youngers wanted to bake sugar cookies.  Fun with rolling, cutting, frosting and sprinkling always makes for smiling faces.  And then the anticipation of eating them!

Lovely weather means time for a nice evening walk near the river.

Holy Week is full of traditions at our house. One is that we  do a very simple Passover meal.  You might laugh at our cute little stuffed lamb there (the lamb of Passover is anything but pretty!), but we do not actually serve a lamb dish at our Passover meal, preferring to save it for Resurrection Day itself.  So we have to have some symbol of the lamb on our Seder plate, and this is what we chose.  We like to make our own matzah bread too.

Continuing the beloved tradition of my grandmother, who is still going strong at 94, we always make our lamb cake.  This year we made two of them to take some to a gathering with friends on Resurrection Sunday.  The children were begging for decorating one this year, so I let them do the cake decorating.  A lovely job they did, indeed!

Tender Warrior says we've started a new tradition of a Saturday campfire on the eve of Easter.  Of course, when you have lovely weather, that is a nice tradition to make :)  Everyone loved it.  It was a little breezy and chilly, but he make a perfect fire in true Warrior fashion, and all were delighted to roast marshmallows.

Resurrection Sunday means everyone must indulge mama in photos.   I'm not posting here all the photos of my sweet ones, except for my sweetest one (and me)!

After a morning of lovely music which my girls helped provide with their dear friend and a few others from church, and a stirring sermon on the resurrection, we returned home for a few hours of continued celebration and some rest.  Before I report on those, I just have to record my new favorite quote from our pastor's sermon that has been sitting with me ever since:
"Risk is Right because the Resurrection is Real!"

Hunting for eggs.  These ones were the hard-boiled and plastic-filled variety.  A couple of weeks before we also gradually go through the story of Christ's last week using the Resurrection Eggs.

In the evening we joined a couple of families for dinner and games.  Younger children played tag....

And grown men played a game of basketball.  I think it was three forty-somethings, a couple of twenty-somethings, and a few teens and pre-teens.  Some serious competition here!
Later in the evening we broke out the game of "Your Best Life Now."  Now, before you think we've gone a little wacky in our theology, you must know that this was a big joke.  Our pastor's family received it as a joke gift from another family in our home group, I think after reading a review on Tim Challies' blog about bestsellers.  So, we opened the box and everyone took turns reading the questions.  They really were good for creating laughs...and at the same time, were quite sad.  I'm not going into a commentary here on it.  Let's just say we think his theology is all wrong.  That's as far as we got with the game.  Then we went on to play another (real) fun game together.

April is also the time for our annual trek to a favorite family discipleship home education conference!  Hurray!  This year we had to stop at a coffee shop we found out about run by a fiddling family.  It was a perfect stop and a nice place to meet and talk with some of them.  This sign caught my attention.  I told Warrior that it was for him :)  Oh, and we stopped here on the way home too.  And we discovered a new favorite....A chocolate peanut butter frappe!!

We stay with Warrior's brother and sister-in-law in their lovely home on the hill (the gardens and view are a sight this time of year!  Wonderful!)  Our first night we had a family movie night.  This uncle has quite a movie theater and he wanted to treat the children to "Frozen."  So he fired up the popcorn machine, much to Littlest Warrior's delight.

As for the conference...OUTSTANDING, as usual!  I'll have to write a separate entry on what I gleaned from it.  Ken Ham was one of the keynote speakers, and we so appreciated how he has grown to tie all that he teaches even more to the Gospel than ever.

Our girls participated in the chorale for the first time and really enjoyed it.  What lovely music!  We had several friends play amazing music at family night too!  A tremendous blessing.

Game time with Aunt and Uncle

And the conclusion of our weekend with a mini-concert for Grandma, Aunt and Uncle.  Grandma did not get to go to the fiddle contest, so she requested that all of the children play their pieces for them.  Then there was a special request for "Lord of the Rings" music. And in between, in the course of the weekend, there was good opportunity to play Irish music and practice our dance steps for class.

One of my other favorite signs at the coffee shop I only noticed the second time we were there and I didn't have my camera on me (can you believe it?).  It said:
"There is always, always, always something to be thankful for"

We have had so much to be thankful for this month!  And I am learning how important it is to express gratitude even  especially in the moments where I might be tempted to grumble.  Just one means of learning how to apply daily living in the Gospel light of Christ. 

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