Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Christmas: Part 2 (and happy new year!!!)

Well, 2011 has come and gone and the new year is upon us. Our family rang in the New Year with wonderful friends and family. Here's a clue as to how we ring in a new year around here.....
There are several benefits to being married to a country boy.... for one, he is not afraid to blow something up!!!!

We are slowly but surely preparing to start school in a couple days. Since this is our last few days of the holiday break, my sweet man treated me to a special date night last night. We spent the evening reflecting on the awesome things God did in our family last year and thanking Him for the dear friends and new relationships that He brought into our lives. We also shared our goals and dreams for our family for 2012. I am so excited to see what God has in store for this year and I hope to share some of what He has been teaching me lately.

For now, I want to share just a couple more very special blessings that were all part of Christmas in our lives this year.

Just a couple nights before Christmas, we had a Birthday Party for Jesus at our house. This was Maggie's idea..... and oh, so much fun! No doubt.... we will do this every year from now on. Maggie and I, along with some of our friends, spent the week preparing an agenda for the night, a menu and stations to rotate through. We had about 45 kids and a bunch of adults.

We ate and then played games. Next, we moved into our dinning room and playroom to make crafts. Our children's minister, Mrs. Phyliss came and shared a very special story about the "Birthday Boy" and then we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus. At the end of the night we ate cake and then went through an assembly line filling stockings that we would later deliver to an apartment complex filled with under privileged children.

This was probably the most special night of the entire Christmas season for our family. At the end of the night, we had been blessed more than anyone.

Yummy dinner with sweet friends.....

Fun and games......

These sweet girls had so much fun!!!

Christmas crafts.....
A very special story time about our Savior.....

Happy Birthday Jesus!!!!

We had ONE LAST wish before Christmas day..... the kids wanted a night to make gingerbread houses. I had determined that it would not happen this year. We had checked most things off of our "wish list", but I had forgotten the gingerbread houses. UNTIL, the night before Christmas Eve...... the kids reminded me. When I explained that we didn't have any of the stuff to make them; they were so quick to remind me that the grocery store would have it ALL!

So, off to the store we went at 8:00 and by 9ish..... you guessed it, we were architects!

We had a blast.... and momma had a mess! :) But these smiles, made it ALL worth it!!!

The one thing missing from our wish list this year...... Esther! Her stocking was hanging on the mantle, her rocking chair was in our Christmas card picture, and she was in our prayers every night. She was in our hearts, but she wasn't in our home..... and we missed her. We talked about her a lot and were reminded by a few new gifts, that she IS coming!

Lexie's sweet friend, Stefanie, painted this canvas for me. How beautiful is that! And, it looks perfect in my den.

Kelsie, my amazing and always by-my-side soul sister, gave me this ornament. It quickly became the focal point of our Christmas tree.
Then, on Christmas morning, my dear friend Jennifer, gave me this very special necklace. The verse she had engraved on it is, Isaiah 41:9-10.

9 "I took you from the ends of the earth, from it's farthest corners I called you.
I said, 'You are my servant'; I have chosen you and have not rejected you.
10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."

I am praising God for HIS help and strength. My own strength fails me daily, especially as we long for our child, but in HIM, we find HOPE!

Happy New 2012 Friends!!!

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