Pre-Holiday Links and Resources -Advent 2018 and Christmas

With Thanksgiving this week, Advent is following quickly behind it!

But besides the busy preparation for Christmas, there are a lot of things we can do to really observe the season of Advent! Over the years I have collected links and resources for the holidays that I thought would help me and my family prepare our hearts and spirits to celebrate the birth of Baby Jesus.  I haven't done everything on this list.  Some of it is a wish list, but there was something in every link that I thought was worthwhile.

Perhaps first on the list is actually getting our homes ready for the holidays:
Holiday Grand Plan or join their Yahoo Group E-mail List Declutter and Clean!
Also DeClutter and Organize on Facebook. 

and get your planner ready~  Advent and Christmas Planner from Catholic Icing or Advent Planner from Wildflower and Marbles. 

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7-quick Takes

Join the other Quicktakers at This Ain't the Lyceum.

1.  I have been mesmerized by Pope Francis this week in Washington, New York and Philadelphia.
I haven't read much "analysis" of his visit because I wanted to hear his words for myself and evaluate them.  I can honestly say that he didn't say one word that I disagreed with!

But I think this is the moment that made me fall in love with him.

2. One of the most thought provoking things he said during his trip -
"We, the people of this continent, are not fearful of foreigners, because most of us once were foreigners."

I told my kids, my great-grandmother got off of the boat from Lithuania.  I remember her.  She held me in her arms - that's how close they are from immigration on my side of the family. On Mr. Pete's side it's even closer - his grandfather, Frenchie, immigrated from Quebec, Canada.  So this makes it very personal for us and helps to put the issue of immigration into perspective.

3.  Meanwhile, life goes on.  Our homeschool is settling down into a routine and pattern of sorts and Saturdays remain very full.

Mr. Pete is still coaching Rosie's team and Izzy is playing on a high school soccer team.  It does seem odd to only have the girls playing soccer this year.
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4. Meanwhile, Noah continues to run with the varsity team at various high schools in different counties.  Today I was able to travel deep into Amish country to watch him beat his personal best by 2 seconds.  18:28 for his 5K. 

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5.  One day a week, we go to a co-op for my students to experience science labs and other classes.  Last week, Izzy came in looking like this.


I am reminded that she truly is an exquisite young lady now!

6.  I finished my Grey's Anatomy Netflix marathon and watched the season premier on Thursday night - and was sorely disappointed. You can read more about that here.  I think there was some very subtle brain washing going on in that episode that involved making it okay to call the authorities when we disagree with parents about how they raise their kids.  Not much shocks me any more, but the way that was carefully crafted into that episode, for such a popular show with such a highly anticipated premiere, truly took me back.

7.  My granddaughter continues to spread love and joy whenever she is around

Introducing miss Charlotte to the beauty of the metro parks.

Her parents are unyoked as a couple and I have a lot of concerns about that.  So when I saw this viral video last week, it really touched my heart.

My parents weren't together either and I do remember some of the yelling and discord that caused me a lot of distress as a little kid.  I remember feeling a lot of anxiety before my father's visits and physically sick when my grandmother yelled at him.  Maybe that's why this video was so powerful for me at 1:16.


  1. I agree that video was powerful! (it made it into my quick takes too haha). I love how your blog is dressed for fall :)


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