Saturday, December 1, 2012

December Newsletter

From Laura, 13 … I have been reading a book by Helen Keller about her life.  It has been interesting to read about certain limitations she had.  For example, when she spoke of her journey through college she said, “I cannot make notes during the lectures, because my hands are busy listening.”  (Her method of hearing was to have the words spelled into her hand.)  I enjoyed reading her experiences when she was learning how to talk.  She said she had always had a strong impulse to make audible sounds, so when she began to speak, it was very freeing.  She was away from home at the time, and this is what she wrote regarding her return home: “At last the happiest of happy moments arrived.  I had made my homeward journey, talking constantly to Miss Sullivan, not for the sake of talking, but determined to improve to the last minute.  Almost before I knew it, the train stopped … there on the platform stood the whole family.  My eyes fill with tears now as I think how my mother pressed me close to her, speechless and trembling with delight, taking in every syllable that I spoke, while little Mildred seized my free hand and kissed it and danced, and my father expressed his pride and affection in a big silence.  It was as if Isaiah’s prophecy had been fulfilled in me.  ‘The mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands!’ ”

From Becca, 16 … This week Mama and I went to the wisdom teeth doctor to see if I needed mine taken out yet.  Happily for us, he said I don’t have to do it for fifteen months.  He thinks they will be ready then.  So we made an appointment for March, 2014.  I’m glad to not have to do it right away.

From Seth, 19 … For the last couple weeks I have been busy learning some really interesting things and trying to finish up the semester.  (Here's one interesting thing I learned: There is an experimentally determined formula for the gravitational force between two objects.  There is a number in this formula that could have really been any number (since the formula is experimentally determined), but it has been found experimentally that the number is not 1.99, or 2.01, but 2.000000000000000000000.  Such precision and exactness speaks of the handiwork of the Master Designer.)

This week I read an interesting article on Desiring God about how, for God's sake, we should commend and praise people, as a recognition of the good that God has worked in their lives.  Also yesterday, I read in Luke about the Pharisee and the tax collector who were praying at the temple.  It was not the "righteous" Pharisee who was justified, but the tax collector, who bowed his head and prayed, "God be merciful to me, a sinner."

From Anna, 22 … I recently started working three days a week as a mother's helper/nanny for a family we know.  They have five children age seven and under, so it's a busy household!  It's a great fit for me; it's work I enjoy, they live close, I'm comfortable with their parenting style, the mom and I work well together, and the children seem to have gotten used to me quite quickly.  I'm grateful and excited to have this opportunity!

From John, Megan,and James … (by Megan) Life has been pretty busy this past month with the holidays coming and just life in general.

James is army crawling all over the place!  Just a couple days ago he pulled himself up to a standing position from on his belly on the floor!  He was very proud of himself, and we now see a new level of baby-proofing!  I hope to get a picture and video of him doing it up on our blog soon.  He is currently cutting his fifth tooth.

Work is going well.

The Saturday before Thanksgiving we went to a Civil War Reenactment at Liendo Plantation in Hempstead with John's Grandma (who was in town for Thanksgiving) and the Wades.  There was a fashion show of ladies fashions of the time, a tour of the plantation house, and a battle reenactment. You can read more about it on our blog!  It was a very enjoyable day!  Long, but enjoyable.

From Ray, Katie, Peter, Samuel, and Andrew (by Katie) We just celebrated our fourth anniversary.  The time has gone by fast, and been full of blessings.  Speaking of blessings, our boys are keeping us busy and entertained.  Peter has been enjoying helping around the house.  He even didn’t want to help put up the Christmas tree because he was “busy washing dishes”!  He soon changed his mind though.  Samuel is into everything and quite stubborn, but also hilarious, affectionate, and delighted with life.  Andrew is a happy baby who smiles at everyone.  He laughs and rolls over, and seems to be in a hurry to get up and play with his brothers.  In other news, Ray received a “Rising Star in Real Estate” award, and got his picture on the cover of the Houston Realtor magazine!  You can ask him for his autograph next time you see him.

From Judith … Laura’s life phases tend to get my attention more than the phases of the other children.  I note each of her phases as the last time for me to have a child go through such and such.  She’s certainly bringing up the rear.  Thankfully, there are sweet grandchildren I’m now privileged to watch grow up.

I really love the fall and here it is again (yes, in Houston our fall is not yet finished) – the coolness, the crisp falling leaves, the golden hues, and the reduction in the mosquito population!  It was a joy yesterday to sit on the front porch bench holding baby Andrew while pulling Samuel back and forth in the stroller.  Both of them were also peacefully taking in the pleasantness of the fall day.

From Gerald … This month has been busy for me with bathroom remodeling.  We have been working to get the apartment area of our house suitable for overnight guests.  My mom’s visit at the end of November provided the incentive for me to take several days off of work to be able to spend more time on this project.  We have rearranged storage boxes and erected temporary walls to make a bedroom area.  The bathroom has been gutted (thanks mostly to Judith), and we have installed a sink and toilet.  We decided to keep the existing tub, but have replaced all of the supply plumbing, including new faucets and valves.  The backer board has been installed for the tub/shower area and we hope to have the shower functional soon.  So, if you want to come visit, we have a place for you to stay without needing to go upstairs.

With love from the Pedersen clan

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