January Favorites

January 1.  The buttermilk pancakes are gone.  Little girl giggles and screams are at fever pitch, which means only one thing–Daddy is home!  Earlier this morning I asked my husband for his opinion about an article I’m working on and he said, “I’m so excited you’re getting back to blogging!” 🙂 Me too, honey.

I have thoroughly enjoyed all this family time, and I thank God for the kind of refreshment that gears us up to face a new year.  Here are some of my January picks.

ACTIVITY: Handprint Art
When my kids brought home these crafts from MMO, I was smitten.  Not only is hand (or foot) print art adorable, it’s a way to capture a moment in time.  The moment when their hand was this small!  Turns out the sky’s the limit when it comes to handprint art.  Check out this  link for dozens of ideas.

I especially like this one using an adult's hand and a child's hand!
I especially like this one using an adult’s hand and a child’s hand!

ARTICLE: Dear Kids: What You Need to Know About Duck Dynasty, Justine Sacco, and Christmas by Ann Voskamp
TV-Duck Dynasty

Voskamp uses current hot topics to teach her children about the power of the tongue and the grace of Christ.

PRODUCT: The Mint App
Here’s something free after the toll of December.  Once you synch the Mint App with your banking accounts, it tracks and organizes your spending for you.  The app provides graphs to help you see where your money is going, creates a budget for you (which you can edit), and emails you when you’re in the red.  For security sake, I suggest installing it on an iPad, not an iPhone.

MOVIE: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
If you’ve ever daydreamed about courage and adventure and telling your boss what you really think, you’ll love Walter Mitty.  And here’s my favorite part–the movie comes full circle, reminding us that all along, the boring, mundane, faithful plodding is beautiful too.  Thoroughly enjoyable and refreshingly clean.  I cannot wait to watch it again–especially the “Ground Control to Major Tom” karaoke scene.  Go Mitty!

BOOK: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
All you moms of 10-15 year olds, this was my favorite book to teach in middle school.  Sixteen strangers gather for the reading of eccentric millionaire Sam Westing’s will, only to learn that whoever can solve the mystery of his death will be granted his entire fortune.  The novel is hilarious, and a great case study in personalities and family dynamics.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!  May you find joy in His presence, strength when you are weary, and hope when you need it the most.

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