What's Up Wednesday

Wow!!! Can you believe we are in the home stretch for 2010?!?! It has been a C-R-A-Z-Y year for us!!!

We finally returned to the US after spending almost 6 years in Okinawa!!

We bought our first home!!

We are still unpacking!!!

And we started our 4th year of homeschooling!!

We joined our first Co-Op, started dance and gymnastic lessons for the kids, put LJ in a book club, and I joined a BUNKO group, yea!!!!! And there is still more being added to our schedule. We are on a "break" of sorts this week but after that it will be a long haul till Christmas. So I need to buckle down, get organized and stay on track. And lets not forget STILL continue to settle down in our new home. Whew is right.

Then, of course,  I came across my "The 12-Week Holiday Planner for the Christian Family". I have done bits and pieces of this over the last couple of years but this year, I'm going to work through the entire 12 weeks and the first week started this week!!!!! Some of the things on my to do list are:
  • Buy/ Make List
  • Sort Holiday recipes
  • Bulk cooking menu
Our home is very non commercial when it comes to most holidays. We don't do Santa or Easter Bunny or Halloween or Valentines or go green on St. Patrick's Day. Our children know about these holidays but we just don't focus on spending money during these times. For example, in the past we have always baked a cake on Christmas Day for Jesus and we do buy our children gifts to unwrap. But we don't overspend or use credit cards for Christmas purchases. This year the kids will be getting one present and their stocking as we  put our focus on the less fortunate in our community. At Easter we get the kids a new Bible or devotional and use Resurrection Eggs to study the life of Christ. Around Valentine's Day we focus on Love in God's term and not man's. Each family is unique and different. When we do or don't do something it's not to say that anyone else is wrong. We try to explain this to our children so that they can comfortably explain to their friends why we do or don't participate in certain holidays during the year. Sometimes this works and sometimes they are way off; like yesterday. LJ came home and was filling me in on a conversation that he had with a friend of his down the street. The little boy has Halloween decorations up and I guess he asked LJ why he didn't have any. LJ's response was: "Cause Halloween worships the devil." (I tried not to cringe.) So I ask what what the little boy said. "He told me that wasn't true that his mom said that Halloween celebrates the Indians." My response was: "LJ why don't you and ---- not talk about Halloween anymore till I can sit down and explain our view in a little more detail, okay hon." "Sure mom." All the while I'm thinking oh great, I can only imagine what is being said about us at their dinner table, lol. I've never told LJ that Halloween is a Satanic holiday. I've always told him we feel it is a holiday that doesn't lift up God so we chose instead to celebrate Reformation Day; a historical day that transformed the Protestant religion.

And yes our children have been known to tell us: "Well when we have children we are going to let them do Halloween and Santa Claus." We let them know when they have their own family they can chose to celebrate what ever holiday they wish to, but for now they are in our home and God has given us the authority and responsibility to raise them in a way that glorifies Him. I would like to also add, for the record, that the boys have also been know to say: "Well when I have kids I'm going to get them everything they want." I'll make sure to remind my grandchildren of this promise, lol.

Anyway, my point in all this is that we do what we feel is best and we expect our friends and families to do the same. We don't offer apologies or defend how we celebrate holidays. We always welcome questions and inquires when someone would like to know more about how we do things but there just isn't enough time in my schedule to get into debates about the right and wrong of commercialization. So feel free to share your holiday traditions or ask questions about ours but please don't question whether we are right or wrong in doing what we do UNLESS there is an obvious contradiction to God's Word.

With all that out of the way, I do hope you will check back in over the next couple of months for What's Up Wednesdays when I share a little about what I'm doing to prepare our hearts, homes, and lives for Thanksgiving and Christmas!!!

And since this week is focusing on List Making and Recipes here are some of my favorite sites on these topic!!! 

I would love it if you shared your favorite recipe or planner site in my comments.

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