December 17, 2015


"Do you ever wonder if you'll ever know what it's like to not even be a little tired?"
"And to think you don't even have a baby waking up at night..."

So went my silly question and sarcastic response from one of our assistant pastors (who just so happens to have a newborn!). Ah, the different stages of life and the things that accompany them!

Just getting out of missions conference and feeling like we're barreling through the Christmas season, it's hard to find time to sit and enjoy everything that comes with this time of the year. Something as simple as letting things go can make such a huge difference, but it's amazing how difficult that can be.

I normally write a poem for our Christmas cards, but this year I had to let that go. We mailed them about a week ago, and I'm still feeling bad about it. My brother did it for years, and then when he went off to med school, that Christmas tradition was handed down to me to carry out. This year my mom wrote a quick update on our year and we got those pictures in the mail. I love that tradition, and I'm planning on starting next year's in July. ;) 

So far we have only watched one Christmas film. Usually Thanksgiving night we begin with Holiday Inn with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire and watch one nearly every weekend leading up to Christmas Eve where we'll end with It's A Wonderful Life (my all time favorite movie anytime of the year). This year we watched the shortest one I could find and squeezed it in while we were all thinking about the huge lists we each had to get done. 

Amie and I make our teachers' gifts together - she makes a few things, and I do too. Several years we've been in the kitchen together preparing them, but between her piano students and me painting the hallway, well, hers are done and mine are not. (Her cookies and cheese logs are quite good, though!)

This week though, we're going to really enjoy Christmas and I can't wait! It actually started last Friday night when our Sunday School went out to eat and then to Opryland Hotel to walk around. I'll insert the big group picture when I get it, but here's a "group selfie" of the people I walked around with all night.

Saturday night I helped my friend throw her first Christmas party at her and her husband's new home. They live just five minutes down the road and we had finger foods and tacky sweaters and gag gifts and games and a houseful of happy people!

Monday morning we had Lena Rae and Dougy for a bit, and I decided I would go in late to work so I could make pancakes and sausage because I was missing breakfasts. (When you go to bed at 1am, you tend to oversleep and grab a granola bar on your way out!) I made a big ol' stack and Lena Rae had 3 and I had 3 and we were so full and it was delightful.

My dad has been preaching away since Monday, and he'll get back this morning. Our annual open house for our church is Sunday night, so we've been painting and cleaning and to be honest, doing a few manly things (like hanging mini blinds. I'm so impressed with myself). When he gets back, the house will be clean and shiny and sparkling with lights. We will have cookies and caramel apples and probably iced tea since it's been 70 - 75 degrees here (Tender Tennessee Christmas! haha). I'll put on Holiday Inn and guess what? We're going to sit down...together

All that to say, I know it's been quiet on here. I know that I never finished my Thanksgiving week and there probably won't be a Christmas story this year. Just go back and read last year's or the one I wrote when I was nineteen.

I hope everyone is having a good Christmas! Whether you're with family or not, remember that it's all about your perspective. So many times over the past few weeks I've wanted to sit down and have a little cry because it didn't feel like Christmas. We weren't all together and the house was in chaos and it was 9 at night and I was still painting. But a few deep breaths, a few looks around at all the blessings, and you can make any situation a little bit brighter by changing your outlook. Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you're right. Even if you don't celebrate Christmas traditionally, do what we do and celebrate family, the gifts of God, and Christ lowering himself to meet us on our level as the most innocent and vulnerable of all human beings. 

Thank you for still reading this blog. Sometimes it's just a simple documentation of my days, but I put it up for me to go back and remember. Please make the most of the last few weeks we have left in 2015! It really is a wonderful life, and it really does pass all too quickly!

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