Monday, December 16, 2013

st. lucia, and johnny cash, and...


(Photos are from last year's celebration, it was Chessa's first time to be Lucia…)

Really. Yes. Somehow these two things are related.

A clever little seasonal calendar is only helpful if you have any idea what day it is.

Fortunately, when one day last week I thought to myself, "Hmm, I wonder when St. Lucia day is?" I started counting back to the last day I was sure of (don't worry it was just a few days back, I'm not that lost..) and oh wow, the very next day was St. Lucia day! At least we didn't miss it!

But I did then kind of forget about it for the rest of the day.

And that's how Chloe ended up spending her evening listening to Johnny Cash and baking our Lucia buns.

And that's how I ended up baking a second batch of Lucia buns the next morning at 4am.

Chloe's batch came out a little crisp (not quite burnt!)
She is a very good baker,
but Johnny Cash.
The girls are really loving him lately. Listening to their favorite songs and trying to write down all the words.

(Anyone else have memories of wearing out tapes (cassettes!) using the rewind button to listen to the same songs over and over again?)

Well, so, Chloe was distracted by song lyrics, and the Lucia buns were... (not burnt…)

The 4am batch turned out just right (lucky, since baking at 4am probably has the potential to go not quite right) though not finished until the sky was losing it's darkness.

And I decided to be Lucia. I had a feeling Chloe wasn't feeling up for an early morning rising (true, she told me later) so I layered on some white clothes, put the crown upon my head…

headed out to get the candle and wake the girls…

oh, and there was Elsa, sitting up wide awake in bed!

and probably Elsa then thought something like...

oh, there is mama, with a crown of candles upon her head!

So I scooped baby up into my arms, somehow lit the candle, and went to wake my big girls...

who thought it was very neat to be awakened by their Lucia mama,

and were even more wide eyed over the transformation of the dark crispy buns into a tray of soft and sweet buns…


Monday, December 9, 2013

first week of advent


The Festival of Stones. St. Nicholas came. Three oranges this year!

Maybe next year I will remember to re-post my advent calendar tutorial in time.

(If I wait for good light and unblurry pictures then blog posts will never happen.)

Our advent angel shows us how many days until Christmas, but that still leaves lots of asking... "How many days till St. Nicholas comes." "When is St. Lucia's day?" "When is Three Kings Day?"

So our Winter Festival Days Calendar should help with that...


Friday, December 6, 2013

this moment ~ one whole year


Our dear little child of light, our advent baby, our hope and joy and blessing.
One whole wonderful year of life with her.
One blurry photograph, an unfinished falling off birthday crown.
Love from sisters And little handmade gifts of course.
And they dressed you up. (In a dress that doesn't quite fit.) (They kind of do that often...)
A dance with daddy. Lots of smiles and giggles.
You go on little walks around the house with us now. Very wobbly legs.
Super happy girl.
We love you so.


Thursday, November 28, 2013

november gratitude (Steiner on gratitude...)


(Do you see? We have an apple fairy this year!)


Rudolph Steiner from "The Child's Changing Consciousness As the Basis of Pedagogical Practice" (Lectures from April, 1923) ...

"All that flows, with devotion and love, from a child's inner being toward whatever comes from the periphery through the parents (or other educators) - and everything expressed outwardly in the child's imitation - will be permeated with a natural mood of gratitude. We only have to act in ways that are worthy of the child's gratitude and it will flow toward us, especially during the first period of life."

"It would be very incorrect to remind children constantly to be thankful for whatever comes from their surroundings.
On the contrary, an atmosphere of gratitude should grow naturally in children through merely witnessing the gratitude that their elders feel as they receive what is freely given by their fellow human beings, and in how they express gratitude.
In this situation, one would also cultivate the habit of feeling grateful by allowing the child to imitate what is done in the surroundings.
If a child says "thank you" very naturally - not in response to the urging of others, but simply by imitation - something has been done which will greatly benefit the child's whole life. 
Out of this an all-embracing gratitude will develop towards the whole world."

"The cultivation of universal gratitude toward the world is of paramount importance.
It does not always need to be in one's consciousness, but may simply live in the background of the feeling life,
so that, at the end of a strenuous day, one can experience gratitude, for example, when entering a beautiful meadow full of flowers. Such a subconscious feeling of gratitude may arise in us whenever we look at nature. It may be felt every morning when the Sun rises, when beholding any of nature's phenomena."

"And if we only act properly in front of the children, a corresponding increase in gratitude will develop within them from all that comes to them from the people living around them, from the way the speak or smile, or the way such people treat them."

"This universal mood of gratitude is the basis for a truly religious attitude; for it is not always recognized that this universal sense of gratitude, provided it takes hold of the whole human being during the first period of life, will engender something even further."

"In human life, love flows into everything if only the proper conditions present themselves for development. The possibility of a more intense experience of love, reaching the physical level, is given only during the second period of life between the change of teeth and puberty."

"But that first tender love,
so deeply embodied in the inner being of the child - without as yet working outward -
this tender blossom will become firmly rooted through the development of gratitude."

"Love, born out of the experience of gratitude during the first period of the child's life, is the love of God. 

One should realize that, just as one has to dig the roots of a plant into the soil in order to receive it's blossom later on, one also has to plant gratitude into the soul of the child, because it is the root of the love of God. 

The love of God will develop out of universal gratitude, as the blossom develops from the root."

"If, during this first period of life, we create an atmosphere of gratitude around children… 

then out of this gratitude toward the world, toward the entire universe, 

and also out of an inner thankfulness for being in this world at all 

(which is something that should ensoul all people), 

the most deep-seated and warmest piety will grow. 

Not the kind that lives on one's lips or in thought only, but piety that will pervade the entire human being, that will be upright, honest, and true."


Blessings, love, peace and well wishes to all...


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Sunday, November 24, 2013

november moments


Autumn walks.
Examining animal tracks.
Gathering milkweed fluff.
Sweetheart baby in her daddy's arms.

This morning... the snow that has been falling all weekend and mostly melting is finally starting to stick. Looking forward to the beautiful white world that the first light of day will show...


Monday, October 28, 2013

autumn day on our little mountain


A stormy day, which stayed sunny long enough for us to enjoy our picnic.

We tried to bake our bread to be shaped like oak leaves. Kinda worked.

Chloe baked some ginger cookies. Stars, hearts and trees.
Fourteen stars - for the 14 years of marriage Jason and I celebrated on this day.
Hearts - lots and lots of them, for lots and lots, and lots, of LOVE.
Trees - because we have our own forest now.

Such lovely autumn colored bits of yarrow.
Thunder in the distance.
Darkening skies. Falling rain.

Earlier in the week there were evening moonlight horse rides.

October is ending...