Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas Weekend

What a WONDERFUL weekend we have had.  On Friday night, the boys, and Toddley and I loaded up in the suburban (in our pajamas) and drove around to look at Christmas lights.  We stopped for Starbucks first, then hit up all our favorites.

This was after a super lazy day spent around the house, reading and watching movies.

In my quiet time Saturday morning, I was struck by the words in a song I'd been listening to.

"The glory of Christmas is the glory of Christ, and the glory of Christmas is the story of His life."  It's not about the stuff, the food, even the traditions that I so love, it's about Jesus and the salvation and hope He brings to us all who believe in Him.  He simply overwhelms me sometimes, and this day was one such time.

On that day, we stayed home until three forty, and we went to church for our Christmas candlelight service.

This is my favorite service of the entire year.  I always end up being so choked up that I can't even sing.  I love all the candles, the Scripture that's read, and the songs we sing to the Lord.

After this service, we went to Daddy's for our Christmas with them.

Where I proceeded to get absolutely ZERO pictures.  A wonderful time was had, though, and I am so thankful for Daddy and Sandy, and another Christmas with them, and the good health the Lord has given to them.  Dad has been really sick the past couple weeks, so I was thrilled to see/hear him feeling better.

On our way home, we drove around our town square to light gaze again.

The kids all went straight to bed, and then Todd and I watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.

 I wrapped a couple things and did stockings, then went to bed.  (We wrapped all the gifts this year.)

These lovelies woke us at six and were ready to come downstairs.  I love their annual picture on the stairs...I love seeing how they fill more and more space each year.  I can't believe Graham is almost eighteen and that they're all the ages they are...I have one more year of NOBODY driving me as a learner, then I'll get to do that times two as Jonah and Noah learn!

We all opened presents, then I spent some time finishing up reading my Advent plan.

By the light of the lovely candle a friend gave me on Christmas eve, of course.  I love this verse in Hebrews one: The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact expression of His nature, sustaining all things by His powerful word.  After making purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.

We got dressed and went to church for the special one hour service and visited with friends, then came home and changed and drove out to Mom's house.

Where I took no pictures, again, except for this one, because my sister Debi sent it to me.

I saw this in a store in her town in Colorado when I was there in November, and I was with my other sister, Lisa when I saw it....and then Debi picked this out on her own, and without knowing I had loved this, and gave it to me for Christmas!  She knows me so well.  I love the thought of people coming into my home and leaving a prayer request for me to pray over for them.  I will use this a lot.

 Lunch was amazing at Mom's and Bill's, and the company was perfect.  Todd's parents came over for lunch, too, which I loved.  Aside from them it was Mom, Bill, Trish, Devin (my nephew), and my family.  We laughed, got a little teary, and shared a wonderful handful of hours together.

After we came home, my dad and stepmom came over for snacks and to see the boys' gifts.  This is always another tradition I love, having them come here.

We all got so many generous and beautiful gifts this year, and everyone was so thoughtful in their giving.  I am so appreciative of it all, but mostly, I am thankful for God's perfect gift to us in His Son, Jesus.  We are blessed beyond measure, and I am grateful to God for all that He has done.  My prayer is that all of my family and friends will know Him the way I do, and that they, too will have relationship with Him someday.

I hope your Christmas was merry and bright.

Love to all.

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