Advent New Year

Advent, or arrival, of the New Year has come! In the Christian tradition the first Sunday of Advent marks the New Year as individuals prepare for the coming of the Redeemer. Each Sunday of the Advent seasons prepares one with focus hope, peace, joy and love. Meditation on each of these values is a solid way to bring calm to one of the busiest times of the year but also sets the stage for the traditional New Year resolutions.

Now, looking back at the last 3 months of the holiday season I cannot help but see memories of hopeful children as they wrote and re-wrote and attempted to re-write their Christmas lists for a third time on Christmas eve… I hear the quiet and stillness of the household once they are all tucked in dreaming of tomorrow’s wishes… I see the joy written all over their faces as they embarked on new adventures trick-or-treating in October, trying new foods at Thanksgiving, and visiting family and friends over the Christmas celebrations… I feel and relish in the loving memories made at Christmas service as I watched each hold their own candle and sing silent night. All of these thoughts seem so fresh and I hope to keep them this way as we head into 2019.

Join me in refreshing the Advent New Year and refocusing on hope, peace, joy and love in 2019!

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Minnie (Kali), Anna (Bella), Cat woman (Ellie), Capn America (Theo) and our resident Wiggly Gal (Lily) ready for some serious trick or treating!
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Visit to the Sun Prairie Fire Department to see Trucks, Police vehicles and the Med Flight team.

Celebrated Kali’s first Winter Dance performance and Lily and Ellie’s first session of Gymnastics. Theo is very excited to start basketball in 1 week.

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Bella continues to enjoy her free time to be creative.

Thanksgiving Love, Joy, Snuggles and Sillies!

Family Christmas celebrations abounded! Great lessons of gratitude versus greed were learned. Lots of thank yous for the blessings that family and friends shared.

I even think they learned to like each other a bit more.

We capped off winter break with a surprise trip to the Dells!

The kiddos loved the waterpark, indoor amusement park and the arcade…

especially when Daddy won them each a ball from the claw machine!

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We welcomed 2019 in with thoughtful reflection and resolutions, as well as, a whole lot of noisemakers!

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The Vanderwall resolutions are to…

Love more and yell less (Frank),

Get better at building everything from Legos to planes to robots (Theo),

Playing nice with Lily (Bella),

Practice reading and gymnastics to get better each time (Lily),

Be more grateful (Kali),

Perfect her cartwheel and learn how to do a handstand (Ellie), and

To slow down enough in each moment to Selah, or to pause, reflect, look upwards, inwards and outwards before moving ahead in hope, peace, joy and love.