This picture marks the beginning of the new year in our 'collective family journal'. Note we don't actually call it that fancy name, we generally just refer to it as the book. It's a plain sketchbook we keep out on the counter to capture that which seems worth remembering, whether in picture or word. The other day someone used the word future and Eliza promptly and confidently stated, 'The future is the day after tomorrow." I don't know how she comes up with these things but she keeps us quite amused.
I don't generally go in for resolutions or promises for the new year but I've decided to try to put paint to paper just a little bit each day. My big girls have maintained a daily sketchbook habit for several years now, and I'm always a wee bit envious of their consistency (not to mention their skills). These are a few of my little daily attempts.
And here is my pretty new planner. I am quite simple and old-school when it comes to planning, being entirely a paper and pencil kind of girl. I like this format of a two-page-a-week spread; I use washi tape to divide the pages in half. To the left of the tape go the items belonging to specific days, and to the right of the tape I list things I need to get done anytime during the week, in various categories such as errands and correspondence. I've found it helpful to use a little letter 'o' stamp to make spots to fill in to keep track of dispensing daily medication. This is also really handy when you have to give someone a course of antibiotics or something short term- stamp an 'o' for however many times a day you need to give it and you'll have a reminder and record of every dose.
Last evening was the monthly meeting of our local World War II Roundtable that my husband and grown children attend. The veteran who spoke last night participated in numerous South Pacific invasions and his talk was interesting and informative as well as highly entertaining. Though this gentleman is nearly ninety years old, this was the first public talk he had ever given on his experiences during the war. Folks were laughing so much at his stories my husband was taking pictures of the audience. They said it was one of the best talks they have ever heard, and they have heard a good number of veterans speak over the years. I wonder if this man will give more talks now that he has made a start.
I know I've said it here before, but if you are at all interested in WWII history do look up your local veterans speaking group and make the effort to get your students out to their events. Many communities and cities have roundtable meetings such as we do, and the time to hear these veterans telling their own powerful and moving stories is growing very short indeed.
We've been having cocoa with breakfast just about every morning during these days of Christmas. Pannetone, cocoa, and clementines has got to be one of the best winter breakfasts ever. I make a big pot of cocoa in the morning and there's plenty left over to warm up again later in the day if someone wants another cup here or there. I like to use a recipe that is simple to remember and easy to make, not too rich and not too sweet. Here is my Everyday Cocoa for a Large Family: Stir together 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup cocoa, and 2 cups water in a big pot over medium high heat. Whisk briskly to dispel any lumps as you bring it to a boil. Let boil for about half a minute, then stir in 8-10 cups of whole milk. Heat through while stirring occasionally- don't let it boil over! Serve at once. Any leftovers can be reheated later (Wilbur of course will take care of any skins.)
Happy New Year! And Blessed Feast of Epiphany to you and yours!