11.01.2011

Multitude Monday ~ October 31 Then and Now, and a Month of Gratitude...



I hate Halloween.  Yes, hate is a strong word, but I do...I hate  Halloween.  I have always hated Halloween, ever since I was a little girl.  I'm fairly sure this is the Halloween I was two...my Granny Marks made this adorable pumpkin costume for her first (and at that time, only) grandchild, and my parents and grandparents dutifully took me "Trick or Treating".  (Notice the rick-rack and the applique...I think my love of these things may have begun with this creation. :)) I couldn't find the photo I originally set out looking for...taken in the entry hall of the house in which we currently live (then Granny and Papa Marks's house).  I remember vividly leaving their house and heading up the street in search of treats from the neighbors, then primarily older people who'd lived in the neighborhood and been friends of my grandparents for years.  I was terrified.  There were bigger children in scary costumes, and I wasn't thrilled about being dressed up myself.  I didn't want to go door to door (I still detest any sort of door-to-door endeavor), and even the candy didn't make all the hubbub worth it.  




This picture was taken later that night, at Granny Kitty and Grandpa Brown's house.  We made the familiar drive across town to see my other grandparents and *their* neighbors...same story, different street...although I don't remember the Trick or Treaters in that neighborhood being quite so scary.  Of course, I don't remember much about the evening by that point...that appears to be Aunt Sis sitting in Papaw's chair, but I don't remember her being there at all.  I think I was a bit shell-shocked by that point. :)


And all these many years later, and all the years in between, I still have no use for Halloween.  Even before I discovered the questionable nature of Halloween, I had no real desire to participate.  If you want to dress up and get candy, have a costume party with a candy buffet. :)  I'm not thrilled with the scary side of Halloween, there is nothing pretty about it, and there are way too many safety issues for my comfort.  There are just way too many other things I'd rather spend time and money celebrating. I suppose I'm the Ebenezer Scrooge of Halloween.  Bah! Humbug! ;-)


However, I LOVE Reformation Day.  It is rich with history and drama and heroes of the faith and even great hymns.  We kicked off a week-long Reformation Day study today and enjoyed every minute of it.  Here's my Facebook status from this afternoon...


"Kick-off to our week-long Reformation Day study, great discussion with the kids about Martin Luther, vocabulary and figurative language from "A Mighty Fortress is our God"...today has been one of those days when I really love being a homeschooling mom. Days like these are the days that keep me going during the "I'm going to rip all of my hair out" days...:)"


(I'm sure I'm the only homeschooling mom around who has those "I'm going to rip all of my hair out" days.  Just "keeping it real" here...:-/)


And I love Thanksgiving.  Really and truly, Thanksgiving may be my very favorite holiday.   I do love Christmas, and Easter is very special, and New Year's is near the top of my list (both because I love the whole "new year planning and goal setting thing, and because New Year's Eve is my birthday :)), but I LOVE Thanksgiving.  


I realized today that November 1 may actually be one of my favorite days of the year.  We finally have the much-detested (at least by me) ordeal of Halloween behind us, and the holiday season begins in earnest as we begin preparing for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  


This year I'm especially excited about November.  First...Billy is on vacation for almost two weeks this month.  We are looking forward to our vacation tremendously...both the fun "R and R" part and the productive "get a lot done" part.  


Second...the kids and I plan to kick off "30 Days of Gratefulness" on November 1.   Part school unit, part "life", we have (well, mostly *I* have...a lot of it will be a surprise to them :)) all kinds of activities planned to help us get into "gratefulness mode" this month.  (We're going to let Dad in on some of it, too...:))  We've all struggled with this in various ways lately, and it's really time that we get down to the business of serious gratefulness.  


Along with that, I'm planning to do a month-long "30 Days of Gratefulness" series here on the blog.  Yes, my plan is to do 30 straight days of posts on the subject of gratefulness.  Some may be reports on what we are doing as a family for our 30 Days of Gratefulness project.   Some may be posts on my own gratefulness journey this month...as I've been planning this, I realize I need it probably the most of anyone.   Some may simply be posts of things I'm thankful for along the way.  I have some loose plans in the works, but nothing set in stone yet.  


This post is already way too long, and I still have my Multitude Monday list to post, so...more on the subject of gratefulness and what God is doing in my life in that area right now tomorrow.  Hopefully I'll also have a chance to throw in a few details about our Reformation Day study tomorrow, too.  Until then, continuing the gifts...




61 ~ The opportunity to homeschool...on the good days and the "pull my hair out" days...and the things God is teaching me through it...even more than what He is teaching my children...

62 ~ My hard-working, long-suffering, always-giving husband...

63 ~ October 31 cookout...as I said on FB tonight..."Perfect way to end the day...good friends, crackling fire, roasted hot dogs and s'mores, wide open spaces, flashlights and night vision goggles flashing in the darkness, laughter echoing across the field...made even Kaitlyn's fake spiders, Mad Madison brandishing the hoe, and the flying, flaming paper plates that threatened to incinerate Kathy and I all worth it. :D"  So thankful for campfire food and good fellowship and time to just relax and enjoy beautiful fall weather by firelight...





64 ~ Reformation Day reminders of those who've gone before, whose faithfulness and courage inspires and challenges us in so many ways...

65 ~ Hymns...always the hymns.  "O, the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus"...long time favorite that Katie played so beautifully Sunday morning...worship at its glorious best!  "A Mighty Fortress is Our God"...Battle Hymn of the Reformation...loving the study we are doing of it this week!

66~ Things to look forward to with anticipation...vacation this month, the opportunity to serve at GBC's Thanksgiving Meal, Children's Christmas musical only a few {too-short!} weeks away, and 100th birthday celebration for a faithful lady closing out the month...

67 ~ The boy's birthday, only a month away!  How can I have been a mom for almost 14 years?  He's growing in wisdom and stature so quickly...

68 ~ Still enjoying the unseasonably mild weather around here...praying for a mild winter this year!

69 ~ My youth Sunday School girls!  God blesses me every week, through the lessons I teach and am taught by, and through these girls who are so unique and so precious.  Love every one of them!  And so blessed to be in a place where I have no doubt I am doing what I am called to do...

70 ~ Real life heroes who help and encourage and inspire and challenge...

71 ~ Psalm 46,  the ways God keeps bringing it across my path lately, and the things He is teaching me from it...


Only remotely decent photo of a child I managed to get all evening...:)












1 comment:

Kelli- AdventurezInChild'Rearing said...

we kicked off our "days of gratefulness" too- I just used a blank calendar poster board & each day we each add 1 thing we are grateful for- :)