and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
nothing in his appearance that we should desire him
by Micah Borger, age 9
Warning- this contains a “spoiler” about the book The Hobbit.
This piece is original writing by our son at age 9. Written shortly before we completed reading The Hobbit together. A delicious adventure.
Boys. The Things They Say (and do)
All outside together. Late afternoon.
Little one out for his “walk.”
A shout comes up from down the hill.
“Mom, Asher is painting his face with red clay! Mom, he’s painting his forehead, cheeks, and knees!” Nate shouts the alarm.
He uses a motion to show massive amounts of clay being smeared on cheeks, knees and forehead.
Mom demands, “Send Asher here. Send him here right now!”
Asher arrives- streaks of red clay besmeared across face…finger paint streaks of red clay peeking through gaping jeans… It is not as bad as Nate depicts.
Whew! Visions of skin and clothes stained with layers of red clay are still playing through my mind.
Asher looks up at me, his brown eyes alight with boyhood joy- spattering freckles across nose standing out sharp against clear-cut little boy features.
Happy innocence exuding from every pore.
“I am going to consider this a boyhood exploit!” I say seriously- “but do not paint your face with mud again or you will have consequences.” I declare firmly.
Boy child looks up at me puzzled… “Boyhood exploit? Huh?”
“I am going to consider this an act that came out of your boyish mind” I say again-“but do not do it again!”
Okay.” He says sweetly.
He heads off back to play- we will wash up when outside time is done.
Images of men and boys- playing hard, dirty, muddy flash through my mind.
It must be a boy thing… I am pondering.
Then- Micah, Little One, and I head companionably back up the driveway.
I have to get in to make dinner.
Micah shares, “One time, Mom, I did the same thing. Only with toothpaste.
And I didn’t paint my forehead. I had some extra toothpaste and I painted my face.”
“You did?” I laugh.
Boys. The things they say. (and do!)
(Later it comes out that a character in a history movie the children watch- painted himself with mud to appear as a beggar- and that is where Asher got the idea… only he wasn’t trying to be a beggar. He was just painting himself with mud!)
Thematic Book Baskets
This year- my eyes were opened to the beauty of fireside reading
and the place of the hearth in family culture.
After the launch of our very first fire this winter- I started to envision
our hearth as a place of beauty and inspiration.
This naturally morphed into me securing a sturdy, lovely
basket to hold seasonal and holiday books.
I love literature and it is a primary source for my
ministry to my children. I have been collecting “sets” of books
for special holidays since my oldest were wee little ones.
Over the years, as school as gotten busier in our household,
I have felt saddened that we were not enjoying some of these books as much as I desire.
A beautiful picture book is indeed a work of art. It can elevate the mind and heart to noble thoughts
and encourage toward good deeds. It can give space to think deep thoughts for God and soothe the soul
in taking a quiet moment to peruse.
Quality literatures also serves as a golden cord that binds our hearts together
in mutual experience and understanding.
Enter- the thematic book basket!
I just began this practice and have filled our basket with our treasured Easter holiday books.
It has been sweet to see my children wander over to the small red chairs and sit, at different times,
and pick up something interesting.
I put a book or two in for adult reading as well- and vary the books to provide different interesting reading.
A book basket can be a thing of beauty, reflect the spirit and mood of home, and welcome seasons and
the holidays of our faith in a visual, tangible, and practical way. It gives me great joy to keep our hearth neat
and our books orderly.
I think the book basket can serve as a helpful organization tool for literature based learning.
I am planning on utilizing mine for holidays, seasons, and special topics of interest.
Here is a list of what is in our Easter basket right now:
For Little Ones:
The Story of Easter Board book by Patricia A. Pingry
The Parable of the Lily board book by Liz Curtis Higgs
The Easter Story by Patricia A. Pingry
The Life of Jesus by Pamela Broughton
The Coming of the Holy Spirit Arch Book
For slightly bigger little ones
all of the above and:
Jesus Loves Me illustrated by Tim Warnes
Easter Eggs for Anya by Virginia Kroll
Sing A New Song: A Book of Psalms by Bijou Le Tord
Miss Fannie’s Hat by Jan Karon
The Legend of the Sand Dollar by Chris Auer
The Easter Story by Brian Wildsmith (Beautiful, beautiful book!)
For school age children:
all of the above and:
The Story of Easter by Christopher Doyle
The Very First Easter by Paul Maier
He is Alive! by Helen Haidle
The Miracles of Jesus Dover Stained Glass Coloring Book
Tell Me The Story of Jesus by V.Gilbert Beers
and for the grown-ups:
Jesus, Keep Me Near The Cross edited by Nancy Guthrie
Be blessed! ~Rebecca
Today was the day the first bloomed tulip was discovered.
It was found by me.
Small, red, with golden streaks on each side.
Then- my Keepers At Home magazine arrived-
and the beautiful cover is full of red;white-tipped tulip blooms.
Tulips are special to me.
They were my wedding flower.
They were given to me in celebration a year later- the birth of our first born son.
They symbolize for me: new life in Christ and the resurrection from the dead.
Beautiful, sweet tulip.
(a verse from our wedding day-emphasis mine)
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
4For he chose us in him
before the creation of the world
to be holy and blameless in his sight.
In love 5he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ,
in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6
to the praise of his glorious grace,
which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
7In him we have redemption through his blood,
the forgiveness of sins,
in accordance with the riches of God’s grace
8that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.