Monday night is family night, and this past Monday was amazing. Yes, we had our Family Home Evening, with scripture, song, prayer and snack. It was a great one, actually - for the 1st time, our family set goals for the New Year - and they were doozies: As a family, help Adam prepare for his mission this fall...read the entire Bible - Old and New Testaments...go on a family summer road trip...and others.
We had fun discussing what goals are, the difference between short- and long-term goals, how we'll stay on track to achieving our goals, and we all left with the assignment of determining at least one and, preferably, no more than 3 personal goals that we'll discuss at our next Family Home Evening. Very fun stuff.
It was also neat to begin reading in Genesis - the first time we've tackled the Bible since all the kiddos have been old enough to read. We've never read it all the way through, and we've never had such deep and insightful discussions and questions. "But, who was before God?" Oh, I remember losing sleep over that one. That's not to say we were able to answer all the questions; I'm just acknowledging the deep doctrine began to be plumbed. We even had that occasional terrible, irreverent but excruciatingly funny closing prayer when Mike asked Tanner to be sure to include a blessing on the snack as part of his prayer. Somehow, the words, "We are grateful for the cantaloupe. Please bless it," struck us all has hysterical and we all fell into a fit of giggles, and Tanner nearly gave up on finishing the prayer. It seems like Heavenly Father should understand we really were earnest, but it was just funny and we couldn't help laughing.
It was a really nice family night, but it wasn't just what happened during Family Home Evening that made it so. It was also what came before. When, for some reason, we all found ourselves lounging in Mike's and my bedroom, which was probably the original family's living room - a long room with our bed at one end and a fireplace at the other. The boys were on the futon in front of the fire, reading. Mike was on the love seat next to the bed looking at seed catalogs with Karlie and ribbing her mercilessly, as usual; with her getting a few well-placed jabs in, too, as usual. I was laying on my bed, curled around Macy who was using me as a back rest, as she worked on her homework.
I lay there quietly watching her write her vocabulary words, watching how she formed her letters, noting her quick, dashing motions that are quintessential Macy: she can't be bothered with neatness and precision when her mind is off and running to the next big idea. She seemed almost impatient when she had to stop her forward motion to go back and cross a "t" or dot a "j." Her body was so still, except for her flashing pencil and her intent eyes. I wondered at how she could be in this elegant repose that she unconsciously assumes, while so earnestly engaged in the task at hand. She's wonderful.
I was mesmerized by her writing and dotting and crossing, then was shaken from my reverie by Adam's chuckle over a book. I looked around and thought, "Here we all are." Naturally. Unconsciously. We could have each been in our own spaces, doing our own things; instead, we all were in one warmly lit room of the house, content to just be near one another.
I love the love we have for one another and the fact that given a choice, we choose each other.
I was given a blessing once that promised I would marvel at the joy that we would have in our children and be in awe of the love in our home.
I do marvel, and I am in awe. And I am so grateful.
Love from the farm,