When people sing The Twelve Days of Christmas, it gets old fast. People usually can't remember if the drummers drumming or Lords a-leaping or ladies milking are day 6, 7 or 8. By the time you get past FIVE GOLDEN RINGS people get silly and don't take it seriously anymore. Consider that my excuse for the past few days. :)
Hard to believe that this is the 9th day of Emma. The past few days have gone by in a blur. I will try to recap just a little bit of it.
1. There was a lot of hiking. We just moved into a new neighborhood in Phoenix by the Phoenix Mountain Preserve, so we are getting out walking or hiking. About 3 minutes in the car and we are at trailheads that head off into the desert landscape and either up or through desert mountains. I prefer through, but Charles, Emma and Maggie have been up several of them this week too.
2.There have been a lot of friends coming, going and staying. We have this tradition....or lack of planning?....that Emma's friends just come, spending day and/or night and I just need to know how many to cook dinner for. It's been this way since Tuesday. We love it. A lot of them are the regulars who have been doing this for 5 years at our house and some are newer. It's amazing to see a group of friends from freshman in high school through sophomore in college ages. They change a LOT and I'm really pleased to see how they've grown and are getting independent and grown up!
3. Wii Just Dance. Just about all of the above mentioned friends have been coerced into playing Just Dance on the Wii game station. Last night there was a big group here and they were really squealing and shouting and laughing so loud that I had to come out and watch for a while too.
4. Netflix. We signed up for a free month and all the people who are hanging out here are watching or at least talking about old shows they used to love when they were little. It is funny to see the different personalities they have but all of them have some cultural iconishness in common from watching the same goofy television shows or movies. They would mention an old show they remembered and there were several minutes of saying quotes from it or singing the theme songs. So I mentioned Andy Griffith as we scrolled past it on the menu. They all just kind of look at me. Weird people.
5. Eating. I purposely put out all my leftover wonderful Christmas baked goods that have made their way into my house and they have amazingly disappeared! Maisy, our dog, was heavily influenced by this grazing of anything within reach. In fact, we would call her opportunistic ways greedy and gluttonous. She ate a large sized chocolate bar that was in a Christmas stocking.....along with most of the foil wrapper. We worried about her for one day but she doesn't seem to be in distress from it. She's just a little heavier to pick up.
6. Playing. There has been a little golfing, Settlers of Catan has been almost permanently on my dining room table, today there was a little remote control helicopter flying around the house (very cool!), and the sounds of Plants vs. Zombies. (yuck) Of course, the best sound of all the games is the laughter and enjoyment from being together again.
7. My favorite thing of the week was tonight though. Maggie was gone to a youth lock in, Hannah was at work and Beth across town on a date, and it was just Charles and I in the living room. Emma and Sara (the last extra left for the evening) were getting ready to go to the lock in for the worship service. Then we heard Emma pick up her guitar and start strumming and singing. She sang Slow Fade, Big House, and How He Loves Us. She and Sara sang loud with harmony and passion.
It made my throat get a big lump in it and tears ready to squirt out with gratefulness at how they have taken their faith as their own and are serving God as young adults. The world is loudly beckoning at them to join in the ruckus and they are keeping their focus. After sending our Emma out into the world to be on her own for college last year or to be owned by the army this year, it was so refreshing to see how her faith and passion is becoming stronger than ever.
Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:30-31 (NLT)