Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy Sixth Day of Christmas and Favorites of 2008

A Happy Sixth Day of Christmas to everyone!

As I'm taking the kids "down the hill" tomorrow to spend some of their Christmas money, today is the day that I'll look back on 2008 and list "a few of my favorite things." 2008 has not been an easy year financially (to say the least), but it's been a good homeschooling year, a good writing year, and a good friendship year.

Homeschooling has been fun -- I just love spending my days with my kids, most of the time. ;) I would love to have one day off a month to sit in a coffee shop and write, but otherwise, we're doing fine. E is a bit behind in her chemistry experiments (which she will be remedying this week), but we're up-to-date in everything else and are enjoying most subjects. I haven't yet found a solid astronomy book for the boys, and as I know little of the science myself, it's our one weak point. But the boys are always reading science books on their own, so they're doing fine.

I feel quite successful with writing this year, having a poem published, completing NaNoWriMo (50,000 words of a novel in a month), and publishing a few stories for our small town monthly newspaper. I've made little progress on my BIG work, mostly because of lack of research time. In my new Rule of Life, I'm trying to clear half an hour a day for writing, either my novel or my non-fiction work on liturgy. And blogging has been going well, with nearly 5000 hits here since last March. Not a huge readership, but I'm quite pleased to have you along on the ride and am astonished that anyone at all reads my little meditative meanderings.

Friends have been wonderful this year. Judith continues to love me, even when I had to resign my secretarial duties with MECAC (our local arts council). We celebrated 50th birthdays of Kitty and Linda, Kitty's with a day at the beach and Linda's with a lunch at Olive Garden. Our Logos Literary Group at church has been wonderfully fun as we read and discuss very divergent writings. I miss the Lady Bereans, the Tuesday morning Bible study I've participated in for years, but I've become closer friends with Dru of Alpine Anglican, plus Sheri and I have enjoyed a spiritual retreat or two. (And I still owe Kitty one in celebration of her birthday in August.) The Lake Murray Women's Retreat was a highlight of my year, as always, with highjinks and fellowship mixed with time for reflection and prayer. And Facebook brought all of my friends closer, despite the computer issues caused by viruses on my laptop that Veneta resolved for us.

But now onto some favorites of 2008. Not all of these movies, books, and music came out this year, but I experienced them this year and declare them as my favorites.

Favorite Movie: Mamma Mia!, 2008

Favorite New TV Show: The Mentalist, CBS

Favorite Returning TV Show: House, MD, FOX

Favorite Novel: Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James, 2008

Favorite Nonfiction Book: Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande, 1934

Favorite Devotional Book (besides Bible/BCP): The Divine Hours in Three Volumes by Phyllis Tickle, 2000 (link takes you to only one volume of the three)

Favorite Blog:
The 10-Minute Writer

Favorite Website:
Act 3 Ministries (John H. Armstrong)

Favorite Social Networking Site: Facebook

Favorite Song: "Our Last Summer" from Mamma Mia!, sung by Colin Firth and Pierce Brosnan

Favorite CD: Mamma Mia! Soundtrack

What are some of your favorite things/activities/etc. of 2008? I'd love to read yours ... and get some new ideas for books to read, movies to see, devotionals and websites to check out.

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