Saturday, January 30, 2010

Award ceremony

We crossed two big milestones in the past week: Jaan finished his reading book, and Raia stopped sucking her finger! So, we celebrated. Will, as the director of our school, presented awards. Jaan received a diploma, a crown, and his next reading book. His next book is a beautiful old Azbuka by Tolstoi, given to us by a neighbor in Kovrov.

Raia also earned an award and a bottle of nail polish!

The girls showing off their diplomas
Asya got one for being our beloved baby. Jaan was already lost in his new book.

The award ceremony was followed by celebratory ice cream. . .

and nail painting.

Congratulations to Jaan and Raia!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Today I am. . .

. . . especially thankful for:

479. and my busy life!

holy experience

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Baptism of the Lord

Today is a big church holiday here. I did kind of think it was funny when one of the men in church this morning said that the whole world was celebrating with us. This is the day we celebrate when Jesus was baptized by John.

It was a beautiful day here! Cold and clear....

After the service at our church, Jaan and Raia and I went down to see the Orthodox blessing of the water. However, the priest never showed up. Rumor has it that he took a group to visit a monastery today. There weren't many people swimming either. Apparently the water was "bad." I think they meant that it wasn't the ideal conditions like last year. There was just ice along the shore (and floating slush beyond that), so the people who were going in had to wade out, not just jump through a hole in the ice.

We had a nice walk, though. And we certainly enjoyed the sunshine!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Back to normal life

The holidays are over, the guests have left. Now we're headed back into normal life. I'm especially excited to get back to a certain part of every-day life: recording God's gifts! The season we just finished was wonderful; I was thankful every day for the fun and sparkle. Now I'm glad to get back into regular days where we can just savor the ordinary, too. I only have time to mention a few of the many today:

480. This habit of thanksgiving!
481. The excitement of starting school again after a break
482. Jaan and Raia both sitting on the couch, making crochet chains and counting aloud as they go
483. Sleep
484. When the sun comes out!
485. Crocheting
486. Soft yarn
487. A husband who brings me pretty yarn from Zaporozhya
488. Asya being my big helper in the kitchen and everywhere

More next week, and as I have time....

Saturday, January 16, 2010

End of the season

Julie and Candie left yesterday. It's awfully quiet here. Asya checks for "Canda" every time she walks through the living room. Raia wanted to know who's coming next. We've had such a wonderful season of holidays and guests! Now we're going to try to rest up after all that.

The rest of the photos from Julie and Candie's visit are here. (Well, they will be. Everyone woke up before I was done.)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Listening to the Bible

Several years ago I started reading through the Bible every year. I'm trying to remember now how long it's been. Three years? Four? It's been one of the best, most life-changing habits that I ever started. However, recently it's gotten a little harder for me to keep up, and--sadly--I've found that I've rushed and just passed my eyes over the page too much. I've always done my reading during nap time, so starting school with Jaan threw me off. As I limped up to the finish line of 2009, I was searching for a new time or something to help me get back on track. And I think I found it!

This also fits with my new hobby (obsession?): crocheting. And I have even been given an iPod! This year my plan is to listen to this podcast and crochet for the first part of nap time, while the girls fall asleep. Then I can work with Jaan after that. It sounds very pleasant and doable. I've even started a group on Ravelry to go along with this. (If you're on Ravelry, come find me; I'm fylliska.) I've been amazed at the response over there!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

"Doolie and Kanda"

We're having a little NTBI reunion here! Julie and Candie are visiting. Such fun!

Friday, January 08, 2010

Christmas quickie

Anna took this hilarious video clip at the Christmas service yesterday. Watch Asya, up in front of everyone. . . .

(She kept her blanket over her head for the rest of the time they were up there.)

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Anna's here!

Will's sister is visiting for a week!

Friday, January 01, 2010

С Новым Годом!

We have better photos from last night than this one, but this just made me laugh.

What happens when you wait until 6:30 to take the group photo
(Yes, Will really was yawning, and look at Taras!)

More later. Good night!