A Basketful of Books

Our little, big family is in transition right now. After 3 years living in Eastern Washington, we are about to embark on a whole new adventure with God. My husband will be working on his Masters of Divinity for the next 4 years. We will be moving back home to the Pacific Northwest! All our stuff is packed away in boxes, stored away for our move after a temporary stay at my husband’s childhood home. His parents are so gracious to host us once again! So we live out of boxes and bins and baskets. And that is where this vignette begins…

A sunny day, and all you littles want to do is play. And with a smile, I remind you, there’s lots to do each day. So we wake up while the hills are covered with a sheet of sun, and the flowers wake up from their star-filled slumber. Our cereal bowls filled with snap, crackle, pop, and a mouths stained with berry smoothie. We hop to the day to get dressed and get ready for a brand new day of learning. You’re off to play, while Mama finishes her morning latte, prepared by Daddy who is already settling in to his work day at church. Baby is finishing up his mishmash of nutritious goodness that Mama has prepared.

You kiddos, so happy, to run off and play together each day. I am so thankful that our Good Shepherd has blessed our family with four little ones, all close in age. This makes my heart very happy. You are all friends and in my heart, I pray, that your friendships will grow with each other as the years go by and that even as grownups, your love and friendship for each other will remain.

Our learning day begins with arithmetic in the morning. Gotta get those brains working hard while the morning is fresh, the day is new. I’ve always loved math (except for that last year of grade 11… not so much). Did you know, kiddos, that you can glorify God in Math? It is true! And it is amazing! When you think of the way God designed the world, how intricate the number patterns are… how perfectly God has ordered the world. His design is so precise. I am thrilled to learn along with you in this learning process how gloriously God displays His power in Math!

Our day goes along as we practice early linguistics, understanding phonograms and learning how to write, read, spell. This excites me as I am laying down foundations that we will build upon later for learning languages. Who knows… maybe God will use different languages in your life in a special way for building His kingdom.

Balancing the schedules of four little people is quite the task! But I love it and approach it with joy and much prayer… and maybe a second cup of coffee mid-point of the day! As the afternoon comes to a close and our brains are quite full, we reach for the basketful of books.

One of the books I chose for our few weeks of transition is called, A Child’s Calendar by author John Updike and illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman. On each double page spread, Hyman’s illustrations so beautifully capture the uniqueness of each month and the story of one family’s life throughout the year. Her portraits of life detail the intricacies of life at home, whether its a glass jar and trinkets on a window ledge, or the inquisitive expressions of children and animals captured in a moment of time. Likewise, the poetry of John Updike for each month of the calendar year, evoke the feelings of festivity and tradition as he thoughtfully places each word in sequence to portray the essence of each month in the ordinary life of this ordinary family.

But the very best reason I love and adore this collection of poems is because of you all. One day, as I remember correctly, all snuggled on the couch to read, I accidentally overemphasized the wrong word which resulted in uncontrollable fits of laughter that continue to this day, whenever that page is read. That accidental reading has also resulted in very dramatic readings and spontaneous interpretations that provide for great hilarity every few minutes.

And this is why, at the close of a long, good, fun, or challenging day, I reach for the Basketful of Books. It is here where our minds can rest, relax and wander into wonder and imagination.