The end of the feast is upon us. We've had a great week, but nobody is ready to go back to the daily grind of life. The children have been off of school since the baby arrived, so they are very sad that I'm making them get back at it tomorrow. I'd like to take the whole year off too, but we'd all regret it come the end of the school year. So, we press onward and will start back up tomorrow.
The second part of our celebration for the Feast of Tabernacles was very delightful though. My mom found an exceptional price for chicken to be canned, so she and I spent some time one day canning chicken. It's always a joy to get canned foods on the shelf, ready for winter. While we canned, Jonathon took a couple of the children to the Mercantile to go to the store Simple Sounds. It's a music store full of things that our family considers to be lots of fun. It's a treat when we let them spend time in there exploring all the instruments and browsing through the store.
Jonathon also took some of the children to Valpo to hang out with another group that were camping there. We always enjoy fellowshiping with those from that group and especially during the feast time. Jonathon was asked to lead worship one night, so taking the children along, gave them another opportunity to play with friends and add some fun to their week.
We also took a day and headed to some friend's house who have horses. They had us for lunch and then the children went out and took turns riding. Oh, they didn't just ride horses. They rode 4 wheelers and tractors too. They even went exploring in the woods on trails and saw 4 deer really close. What a great time they all had!!
Today, with everyone getting over their sicknesses and our friends feeling better and other friends making it back home early from their Sukkot celebration, we arranged for a play date/supper cookout at the park. Our children have missed their friends so much ( we have too), and it was the perfect way to end the feast. The children all explored and played, while the adults hung out and relaxed. It was very much enjoyed by everyone!
The children went exploring and ended up playing in the creek. They decided to build a bridge and a fort. What creative children we all have. I love how they all worked together building and creating. They made some great memories today and want very much to do it again. Maybe next summer. :)
We wrap up another celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles with joy. The children's Thankful journals are getting filled up. I plan on having them continue them throughout the rest of this school year as our focus for the year. My mom gave me a really nice journal/devotional for mothers when I had Hadassah. I am turning that into my thankful journal and using it to write down the things that I am thankful for. What a great way to refocus the negativity and discontentment that can creep up into our lives by simply stating the things that we are blessed with. I'm excited to continue this project with the children, and see how it transforms them into happier children. They are already happy, but can't we all use a little bit more of that. I know I can!
We talked this week about wanting more God-Communion versus World-Consumption. In the garden when Eve sinned and ate of the apple, she was not being thankful for what God had already given to her, eating from that instead. She was more focused on World-Consumption. And because of that, she lost the God-Communion and was kicked out of the garden. Being thankful promotes joy and promotes communion with HIM as we express our appreciation for what HE has given to us. It's something that we've focused on this week and hopefully we can draw closer to HIM in communion as we continue in our thankfulness.
I'm so thankful for this week at home with my family to grow in what the Father was leading us to focus on with the children. It definitely has been needed in all of our lives. BUT, I'm also thankful that we got to end the feast with our friends. What a blessing and reminder of how thankful we are for them and the relationships that we have that are like family. Maybe next year we'll all get to celebrate the feast together. We'll look forward to that for sure!