Archive for December 2010

The Widow’s Might

December 31, 2010

Have you seen “The Widow’s Might”?  Do you own it?  If you answered no to either of these questions, hop straight over to the website and buy it now!  I followed the production through the behind the scenes videos posted by the director, John Moore, and was amazed by the finished product even after all the hints!  I’ve got pretty picky taste in movies, but this one got two thumbs up from this homeschool graduate.  Of course, that’s not as special as winning the Audience Choice award and the Best of Festival award from the SAICFF, but it counts for something anyway!

I just watched this video on the site of John Moore’s latest project, “Ace Wonder: Message from a Dead Man.”  In it, John says the DVD and sound track CD of “The Widow’s Might” are on sale with free shipping.  So go check out the video, “Ace Wonder,” and “The Widow’s Might“!  If you want to see more of the fun, work through the archives of John’s blog and his old blog to find all his behind-the-scenes stuff — you’ll gain ten years laughing.  Anyone who thinks making movies is serious business has never met the people at HeuMoore Productions!

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‘Tis the Season to be Singing

December 16, 2010

In my book, it is always a season for singing, but Christmas time just doubles my vocalizing for some inexplicable reason ;)!

I’ve always loved Christmas songs, especially carols.  I remember the excitement of my first years as part of our church Christmas plays, pageants, or choirs.  Some years we had a play based around Christmas, and I sometimes got to act, which I also enjoyed, but I loved the years we had a choir.

Standing on stage for the performance looked nothing like all the rehearsals.  For one thing, rehearsals tended to be during the day, while performances were in the evening.  Speaking or singing to a darkened sanctuary sent a tingly feeling up my spine.  And then there were people out there!  Sure, I knew there would be people, but the size of my church never came home so dramatically as when I got up to perform in front of a couple hundred eyes.

I still have fond memories of the first solos I sang for Christmas.  One year, I sang “Away in a Manger” as a trio, but the next year, they chose a different girl to sing with the two sisters I had performed with previously.  I was then asked to sing a verse of “O Come, All Ye Faithful” all by myself.  After being disappointed in not getting to sing in the trio again, I was floored and a bit nervous to get a whole solo!  Later, I was also asked to sing a trio with my two siblings.  While I wasn’t that much of a singer back then, I meant what I sang, and I did my best, two things which cover a multitude of wrong notes or mistakes.

I’ve sung solos in each church after that, sometimes in Christmas cantatas, sometimes in Easter cantatas, and sometimes just for fun.  My favorites, however, are the Christmas songs.  I didn’t think of singing Twila Paris‘s “It’s the Thought” until much too late to pull it together this year, but maybe next year I’ll have the time.  For this year, my solo in the Christmas cantata is enough.

Although carols are my favorite, there are a select few other Christmas songs I like.  Bing Crosby’s version of “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas” is fabulous, and I was caught by something in an old rendition of “Silver Bells” that I like.  I’ve even gotten to like “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” after seeing the Fred Astaire movie of that name.  Of course, my favorite modern Christmas song is Mark Lowry‘s “Mary, Did You Know?”  That’s because my father sings it most years, and although he doesn’t sing it like Lowry, his version is as good or better!

Christmas time is a great time to sing because the songs of Christmas revolve around . . . you guessed it, Christ!  I can’t imagine anything better to sing about than God’s gift to mankind.  Sure, there are a lot of parts to that gift, from the manger to the empty grave.  I love to sing about them all, but as I like to say, my favorite song is the one I’m singing right now!

Creative Learning Connection

December 15, 2010

After reading about Catherine Jaime on Lea Ann’s blog, “Whatever State I Am,” I had to come recommend that you check out both the post about Catherine’s book and the website.  Catherine is giving away a free copy of Organized Ramblings to readers of Lea Ann’s blog, so go check it out.  Catherine Jaime is a homeschooling mother of 12, and she founded Creative Learning Connection, which seems to be a great resource for homeschoolers, and has also written other materials for homeschoolers.

In connection with this, you may also note that I have added a link to Creative Learning Connection in my resources section of the sidebar and to the homeschooling links menu in the footer.  I’m in the process of adding more to these sections, but it’s slow going while working on final papers for the fall semester!  Thanks for your patience.

Snowing in the Blog

December 3, 2010

I’m sure you’ve all noticed the snow currently falling on my blog.  When I saw this feature, I’m afraid I couldn’t resist.  I will, however, give you a few tips if you’re not quite so thrilled with the distraction it might cause.

If it’s snowing too hard for you, check the position of your cursor.  When you put the cursor to the edge of the screen, the wind blows strongly from that side, making the snow fall rapidly in the other direction.  If you put your cursor in the middle of the page, the snow falls more softly and straight down, which doesn’t interfere with your vision as much.

If the extra visual doesn’t interfere with your ability to focus on the text in the first place, disregard the above!

No matter which category you fall in, you have my permission to play with my snow.

🙂

Season for Snow

December 1, 2010

I love snow.

Despite the trouble of shoveling, despite the damper of difficult travel, despite the reality of a cold nose and ears, I love snow!  I love to look out and see everything covered in snow.

The first snowfall each year takes me back to the days when I would see flakes falling and run to our back slider door.  Lying on my back with my head at the door, I could look out and see dark blobs falling from the sky.  They looked so funny, not like snow at all!

I also remember the year we took black construction paper onto the deck to see the flakes falling on it.  Each was different, of course, but they all had the same six point design.  Isn’t it amazing how many designs God has for snowflakes?

Perhaps one of the reasons I like snow so much is because I was a winter baby.  More likely I like snow because to me it symbolizes several things.  First, in my mind snow is associated with Christmas.  I’ll have to write another post on that one!  Snow also makes me think of renewal, because it helps cover the grass during the cold winter months, protecting it from the sun while it cannot grow.  Come spring, the snow will melt and the grass will come out again, looking all the greener for having slept under its winter blanket!

And as white as snow is, it always reminds me of how my sins have been washed whiter even than snow.  Knowing a small portion of how black my sins were (to know the full extent of their sins would daunt anyone, which is why God in his mercy never allows us to see it), I am continually amazed by the wonder of God’s wonderful gift, making me white and clean again!

Okay, and the last reason I like snow?  All right, all right, it’s probably not the last, just the last one I’ll bore you with right now.  Snow gets me in the mood for singing Christmas Carols!  I sing them all year round, actually, and singing in my church’s Christmas Cantata always gets me started early, but something about snow on the ground makes me even more tuneful.  I love to hear the old carols, and it’s even better to sing them!

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of Peace On Earth, Good Will To Men

I thought how as the day had come
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song
Of Peace On Earth, Good Will To Men

And in despair I bowed my head
“There is no peace on earth,” I said
For death is strong and mocks the song
Of Peace On Earth, Good Will To Men

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep
“God is not dead, nor does he sleep
The wrong shall fail the right, prevail
With Peace On Earth, Good Will To Men”


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