Sunday Reflections: A Week Without Dad

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Life at the Strauss House...

So this week Jason went to his first Circe Apprenticeship retreat.  I enjoyed receiving texts throughout the week of quotes that inspired him as he learned more about teaching classically.  My favorite insight was:

"Try and avoid giving students an answer to a question they haven't asked yet."

While he was away, we celebrated Will's 15th birthday, rested, went for a lot of walks, and geared up for school to start.  The end of the summer has arrived, but I'm excited to get back to a regular routine!

Untitled design (8)

Where I'm reading in the Bible...

I've continued to soak in 1 John this week as I prepare for school to start back.  I got stuck thinking about the word "manifest" as in:

In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.  1 John 4:9

Webster's dictionary defines it as: 1. Plain, open, clearly visible to the eye or obvious to the understanding; apparent; not obscure or difficult to be seen or understood. From the testimony, the truth we conceive to be manifest.

I love the idea that God intends His love to be clearly visible and easy to understand.

What books we're reading...

As a family: We love reading aloud, and in the summer it's mostly looked like listening to audio books in the car.  Right now we're listening to:

  • The Magician's Nephew - we all agreed that it is one of our favorites...but how do you pick a favorite in the Narnia series?

Jason: Even though he was away on a retreat, he still had time to catch some audio books in the car on the way there.

Betsy: I worked on making time for reading this week.  I might need to find time other than right before I go to sleep to read...super challenging to keep my eyes open once I find the comfort of my bed.  But I did read a little:

  • The Odyssey (three whole chapters!)
  • The Wizard of Oz - it was an abridged version, but the illustrations were amazing, and I had a little girl snuggling by my side which made it even better!

Will: I got him some micron pens to mark his books up with.  He's been having fun thinking as he reads!




Steps towards a healthier lifestyle...

I've made it to 10,000 steps every day this week.  Surprisingly, I've found that even though I have a full life, there is always time to walk. It's one of those lies I've believed about my health. And now that I'm walking, I have more energy and everything I do has gotten a touch easier. I've got a couple of friends walking with me, so it's fun to have accountability in walking.  When my husband got home, I took him on one of my trails and he's sore today!  Good to be back moving.

Some of my favorite THM dinners this week were:


This week's highlights...

I played chess on the wall with my son.  It was a close game, or at least I'm telling myself that!

chess board hanging on the wall

I got to spend some precious one-on-one time with my youngest.  At lunch we argued about ketchup vs. gravy to dip chicken strips in.  We are on opposite sides of that argument!

lunch date

We went shopping for science supplies for Challenge 1 and then played with books at Barnes 'n Noble.  She found a kit to make head flower wreaths with that she wanted to buy, but we didn't.  When she got home, she made her own in the front yard.

flower wreath

Sunday Reflections:

As I look back over the week, ten things I can thank God for :

  • Having a 15 year old who still loves me, enjoys talking to me, and spends time with me
  • Andrew Kern and the Circe Institute for training and discipling teachers
  • My husband's safe travels to and from Houston
  • My son who walked at least 50,000 steps with me this week and never complained
  • My mother who washes dishes when I cook
  • Hot glue and ribbon that kept my daughters creating for hours
  • My son's sweet patient response when he found out that I washed his phone with his laundry - mom fail
  • Air conditioning for 108 degree days in Texas - and nothing to shovel during our severe weather days
  • Sleep and its revitalizing power
  • Hugs - I need a lot of these in a day

Another week in the books.  I was encouraged this morning that "Time doesn't change hearts, God does." I need to be mindful that I'm seeking God to renovate my life and not just waiting for the change to magically happen.

The Lord bless you
    and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
    and give you peace.

Numbers 6:24-26


  1. Lauren on August 10, 2015 at 12:31 pm

    I hope my sweet son and I have a strong relationship when he is 15 too! So many great things you have to be thankful for! Enjoy your week!

    • Betsy on August 10, 2015 at 10:21 pm

      Thanks Lauren! Hope you have a great week too!

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