Christmas Eve after church in the morning we set out the candles for the evening service. We line the entire driveway and the whole effect is quite pretty.
The Bennett Family Blog
Elizabeth, Kathryn and Julianna lit all the candles while the rest of us prepared for the evening service.
These four did so well with their spontaneous prelude in the morning we decided to have them play the evening prelude as well.
Our friends Cullen and Tierney sang with Lydia and Daniel for the Christmas Eve service, as well as playing violin and viola.
We had a good evening visiting with our aunt and uncle's family after church; playing games and talking, and of course eating!
Christmas Day we had a football game in the afternoon - Jonathan, Matthew & N'gella and Susanna beat Julianna, Carolyn, Lydia and Daniel soundly. The yard was extremely slippery but we had a lot of fun playing together!
"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:10-11
On the afternoon of his eighteenth birthday, Daniel took a trip to Town Hall to register to vote. We were all excited for him, though it's hard to believe that he is now actually old enough to vote!
Filling out the registration form!
We enjoy working with our local Registrars of Voters each election season.
Happy to be a registered voter!
"I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty." 1 Timothy 2:1-2
Last weekend we spent Friday evening and most of Saturday recording a new girls Christmas CD. We enjoyed working together on the project, which will hopefully be ready in time for Christmas.
Getting set up. We recorded at Nelson Hall at Elim Park, so we had to set everything up ourselves.
Our recording engineer, Bobby, with Matthew.
Daniel took the camera up to the catwalk to get this picture!
We recorded fifteen songs - three on Friday evening, and twelve on Saturday. We were a little tired by the end!
Daniel turned pages for Matthew.
"I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being." Psalm 104:33
We enjoyed our visit to the beautiful province of Quebec to spend time with Grandmaman and also minister at L'Eglise Baptiste de la Beauce. Unfortunately we forgot to take any pictures of our concert, but we did get lots of other pictures through the week. :)
It has become a tradition to get a picture from a different angle with this deer in Grandmaman's basement each time we are there.
We enjoyed spending time walking with Grandmaman.
Happy Birthday Grandmaman!
We stayed up late decorating the night before Grandmaman's birthday.
These types of swings are common in Quebec, and we enjoy sitting around and talking together.
Susanna, Julianna and Kathryn
N'gella's mom had some trees cut down by her house, so we went over one afternoon and spent an hour or two cleaning up branches. She has an ATV with a trailer so several people took turns hauling the branches away.
"And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men." Col 3:23
On a cloudy, cool morning we set off on our 10-mile walk to raise money for Hope Pregnancy Center in Cheshire (www.hopepregnancycenterct.org). This is a yearly tradition at our church, and this year we had about 20 participants.
Hope for Life....for the unborn and their parents who come to Hope Pregnancy Center seeking help in a time of great need.
We enjoyed conversations as sisters and sisters in Christ.
"I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD." Psalm 40:1-3
We thought we'd share some of the highlights of this past month - we are so grateful to God for all the special blessings He sends our way!
Kathryn had been in a courtship with our family friend, Joel since January, and on August 1st he proposed to her! We were all present together with his parents and his sister when he asked her to become his wife. We are so grateful for Joel's humble, wholehearted desire to honor and glorify the Lord, and we are looking forward to having him join us as a permanent member of the Bennett family!
Joel and Kathryn not only share a deep love for the Lord and His Word, but they also both enjoy similar hobbies - they had painted this pallet together on the 4th of July.
We are looking forward to a beautiful wedding in early spring!
This past week, we enjoyed some time at the Cheshire Grange Fair. Kathryn entered this quilt, which won 1st prize
She also painted this eagle - also a 1st prize winner.
Daniel painted this picture
And our cousin, Michael painted this while visiting us for a couple weeks
Kathryn won best of show for a flower arrangement that she made with flowers from her garden, and another best of show for her gladiolas. She also won prizes for her potatoes and spearmint.
Joel carved these "Goof-balls" - he cuts of half of the outside of a golfball, and carves and then paints faces on the inside. We just love how each one is so unique!
He also entered this owl which he carved when he was younger.
Lydia entered several pictures that she had taken
We had fun with the rolling pin throwing contest for the ladies, and the rubber mallet throw for the men. The rubber mallet throw ended in a 3-round playoff between Daniel and Joel's dad....
...but Daniel ended up walking away with the final victory! :)
After the Grange fair, we went apple picking! We had lots of fun together!
"Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever." (Psalm 106:1)
We had a free evening last week and took a trip out to Hammonassett State Park. Lydia spent almost the whole time we were there taking pictures of the scenery. She says it’s a good thing we don’t live at the beach or she’d spend all her time taking pictures!
A few weeks ago, we saw a beautiful rainbow over our house. What a special reminder of God's grace! (see Genesis 9:13-16)
And if one rainbow isn't special enough, we saw a double rainbow!
For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
We have a tremendous heritage as American citizens, but unfortunately not many people take time to think about it. For the past six years our family has organized a public reading of the Declaration of Independence in our town on July 4th. In addition, we try to have something different each year about specific signers of the Declaration and other related events of the Revolution. This year we focused on the Committee of Five appointed to draft the Declaration: Benjamin Franklin (PA), Thomas Jefferson (VA), John Adams (MA), Robert Livingston (NY), and Roger Sherman (CT).
It was a beautiful day!
A local retired Civil Air Patrol captain delivered a rendition of Patrick Henry's famous speech: "Give me liberty, or give me death!"
Our Chief of Police led the Pledge of Allegiance
Explaining the history behind three symbols of the American Revolution: Join or Die, Don't Tread on Me, and An Appeal to Heaven
"Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people." Proverbs 14:34
Last weekend was the annual Extended Bennett Family Picnic at our uncle's house. All of Dad's brothers and sisters and a majority of our cousins were there, plus a handful of friends, so we had enough people to have four rotating teams for wiffleball.
We always take a group picture....this year everyone under 27 was sent to the upper porch to make it easier to see everyone.
Dad with his brothers and sisters
Dad and Uncle Rick have an annual ping-pong competition. So far, Dad remains the champion.
After hitting his first ever official home run, Daniel had everyone at the picnic sign his wiffleball. And then he hit 5 or 6 more!
Dad got our cousin Sarah a balloon for her birthday which was that week.
We are so grateful for Dad! For all the special memories that he's made with us, for all the projects that we've done together, for all the time he has invested in us - we are thankful! We appreciate his desire to encourage each one of us to "seek first the kingdom of God...", and to center our lives around the Word of God.
"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. " (Psalm 1:1-2)