It seems a little cliche to open almost every monthly wrap-up post talking about how fast time flies—but I literally don’t know where April has gone. I just suddenly realized on Tuesday that April ends this week.
I love that April starts feeling like spring, even though spring began officially in March. We still have some cold nights and days, but the air is gradually getting warmer, flowers and trees are blooming, my energy is renewed like a bear coming out of hibernation.
The highlight of April for us is our grandson’s birthday. Facebook always shows pictures and memories from that time seven years ago when Timothy came unexpectedly 10 1/2 weeks early. Those weeks in the NICU were hard on many levels. But God brought everyone through, and Timothy is now a strapping, smart, sweet, funny boy.
We’re continuing to adjust to our empty nest. Jesse is enjoying “adulting” and learning to cook. We got his old room painted and my craft/sewing stuff moved in. We still have to move the things on the wall to the new room, and then Jim will be ready to paint the old sewing room, which we’ll turn into a spare bedroom. I’m looking up ideas for decorating it. My pink-and-flowers-and-lace-loving self would be thrilled to go full tilt. But often men stay in that room, usually my oldest son or my step-father. So to be merciful to them, I’m looking for something more neutral.
I like the idea of a beachy theme (which I just discovered is called “coastal” now) and have a Pinterest board of ideas. I grew up in Texas near Padre Island on the Gulf of Mexico, and almost any major event as well as several minor ones took place on the beach. Plus one of my all-time favorite family vacations took place on Folly Beach in Charleston, SC. There’s just something restful to me about the beach—at least, a beach that’s not crowded.
After seeing this Spare Oom sign (a la Faun Tumnus in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe), and decorations like this bookish pencil holder and end table, I was sorely tempted to try to make the room like a Narnian English study. But we’d probably need to spend more for that kind of look. Plus all the rooms like that I see online are dark, and I much prefer light, airy rooms. The furniture that will remain in the room is white. So I think I’ll stay with beachy.
We also fulfilled my husband’s long-standing dream of getting an RV. It was a matter of finding a good deal on a used one in good condition at a time when our finances could take it on. We’re having fun outfitting it and look forward to taking it out for the first time.
I mentioned on a post about Timothy’s birthday that he’s into Minecraft now, and his party used that as a theme. So I wanted to have my card for him incorporate Minecraft somehow. The Cricut didn’t have anything related, and it didn’t occur to me til I was all done that Hobby Lobby might have had some stickers. I ended up looking up free Clipart images and printing and cutting them out. I even found a Minecraft font I could use for the wording.
I put the heart on as an afterthought and didn’t realize that messed up my centering until it was too late. Oh, well . . . live and learn.
Watching and Listening
My husband discovered the Home Fires series, about the home front in England during WWII. I had watched it a while back while riding my exercise bike, but I enjoyed watching it again with him. The cinematography is gorgeous. It gets a little soap-opera-ish in places, and there are some wrong relationships, but nothing explicit is shown.
I’m still working my way through Lark Rise to Candleford, but haven’t been using my bike as much just due to general busyness.
In-between audiobooks, I listened to several episodes of The Christian Publishing Show podcast. I also enjoyed the Literary Life podcast episode on Why Read Fairy Tales. Originally, fairy tales weren’t necessarily meant for children, and they imaged some aspect of the gospel. I learned that most fairy tales we’re familiar with today (and most that the Disney movies are based on) aren’t the originals, but were rewritten by someone to make them moralistic. Also, did you know that “hero” originally meant the main character in a story, not someone with heroic qualities? And there’s a difference between a cautionary tale, a folk tale, and a fairy tale? All in all, a very good and informative episode.
Since last time I finished:
- Preparing for Easter with C. S. Lewis. This was my Lenten reading. It was kind of a disappointment because it didn’t really live up to the title, and too many excerpts were pulled from their context and therefore not as easily understood. But there are always some good nuggets in a collection of Lewis’ writing.
- Be Confident (Hebrews): Living by Faith, Not by Sight by Warren Wiersbe. A small, helpful commentary on the book of Hebrews.
- Sons of Blackbird Mountain by Joanne Bischof, an excellent Christian novel set in the post-Civil War years. A young widow comes to keep house for her husband’s cousins, one of whom is deaf and addicted to alcohol. Two of the brothers are attracted to her, causing a rift between them.
- Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope (audiobook), the second in his Chronicles of Barsetshire series. A satire of rival clergymen and rivals for a rich young widow’s hand.
- The Narrative of Sojourner Truth as told to Olive Gilbert (audiobook). A freed slave who later became a well-known speaker for civil and women’s rights.
I’m currently reading:
- Be Counted (Numbers): Living a Life that Counts for God by Warren Wiersbe
- Ten Words to Live By: Delighting in and Doing What God Commands by Jen Wilkin
- Daughters of Northern Shores by Joanne Bischof, sequel to Sons of Blackbird Mountain.
- How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Van Doren (still . . . )
- Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie
Besides books reviews, Friday Fave Fives, and Laudable Linkages, I’ve shared on the blog this month:
- The Incredible Privilege of Drawing Near to God. In the OT, the emphasis was on God’s separateness and holiness and the distance between us and Him. What a joy and comfort that through Christ we can draw near.
- When God Gives Up. God is incredibly merciful and longsuffering. But when people harden their hearts and insist on their own way, sometimes He lets them have it.
- Do You Want a Fresh Word from the Lord? He’s given us “all things that pertain to life and godliness” in the Word He has already given. What are we doing with it?
- Is It Wrong to Seek Approval? It depends on what kind and what our motives are.
And that just about wraps up April! How was yours?
(Sharing with Grace and Truth, Grace at Home, Hearth and Soul, Senior Salon, What I’m Into, InstaEncouragements)