Saturday, December 29

Merry 'Late' Christmas

I am trying to claw my way back into blogging.
Since the last time I posted my little family has been hit with the FLU and then immediately hit with the STOMACH BUG! We couldn't seem to catch a break. During our Crazy sickness I, with the help of my amazing friends, put together the First Annual Giving Hope Black Bag Christmas outreach. (There will be more on Giving Hope soon!!!) This Christmas, Giving Hope was able to bless 17 single moms with Christmas gifts for their children. We were able to rent a Convention Center here in town for the event. We had jumpers for the children, Pizza, Sweet Treats, Christmas Music Playing and tables FULL of free donations. I'm talking clothes, shoes, microwaves, dining chairs, name we had it and it was all free! Plus our Black Bags FULL of gifts for each family that were pre-wrapped for Christmas so they would all be surprised. What a blessing it was to these families!  And a blessing to us as well.
Amazing support system & brains behind Giving Hope.

Once everyone was fully recovered we were in Christmas Mode...full swing. We had Christmas dinners, Christmas Light Hay Rides, Movie nights, Christmas Angle Missions (more on her next year!!) and more.
This Christmas seemed to come and go quicker then ever!

Last Christmas was such a strange Christmas. I found myself full of Joy and Christmas cheer but longing and deeply missing our Sweet Emerson who was still in Ethiopia waiting to be cleared by the Embassy. It had been 8 weeks since we had last seen her and my heart was aching. On Christmas Eve last year, I wrote this post.
Oh how my heart ached for her to be home. For her to be enjoying the warm crackling fire on our snowy Christmas day, to be joining in on candle light Christmas services, presents beautifully wrapped under the tree and tables filled with the most delicious foods.
This year... she IS HOME! Our first Christmas with our precious daughter. It was so special. A little stressful with all the Christmas Craziness but so, so special!
Before our churches Christmas Eve service. 

Christmas day was filled with laughter and giggles as the kids studied their "Santa" gifts in amazement that he really remembered what they wanted! Sometimes it bothers me that this Santa guy gets all the credit for remebering and giving special gifts. Just sayin'!
We stuck to our normal tradition of giving the kids 3 wrapped gifts. The 3 wrapped gifts represent to 3 gifts that the 3 Kings brought Christ when he was born. Usually these gifts are:
1) Something to wear
2) Something to Read
3) Something they have wanted.
Then Santa brings them a big gift (something we wanted to bless the kids with) and little candies and craft supplies. We love crafting in this house! Some of you have asked how we do Santa in our home. I have mentioned before that we neither encourage him or discourage him. Santa, and the story of Saint Nicholas, is magical and inspiring and really all Santa is to us is that magical spirit of giving and that innocent essence of childhood fantasy. Christ is our focal point. The reason we celebrate. Parker has figured us out I think. Santa brought him a 'Remote Control Airplane' for Christmas this year and it was by far his favorite. That night, before bed, he came up to me and gave me a big hug and said "Mom...I am not sure if Santa is really real or not but incase he isn't real and you really bought me this Airplane I just want you to know that I love it and Thank You!!" Melt. My. Heart.
We probably should have taken sweet Bebo's Pull-Up off! LOL! 

I hope that your Christmas was as Merry and Bright as ours! I can't wait until next years Holiday Season. The stress of moving (we move in 3.5 weeks) will not be on my shoulders and hopefully that wicked flu bug will not try to rob our Holiday Cheer, like he tried to this year. Despite the little holiday hiccups it was a GREAT Christmas and I am thankful for all of these little loves that I get to spend it with.
Merry 'Late' Christmas from our Family to Yours!! 

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