Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas 2013

Lehr had surgery two days before Christmas this year, so our holiday break didn't look quite the same as years past. No Christmas Eve service and no family bikes or hikes, but we still had a great time. One of the biggest highlights for me, as always, was the kids' gifts to each other. As usual, they picked out great gifts that they knew would be well received: Eli got Maddux a bow and arrow and Maddux got Eli a basketball. The older kids both picked out clothes for Ruby, which was odd but completely their choice, and Ruby got them each a framed picture for their rooms.
We did the Jesus stocking a little differently this year. Instead of me collecting all of the ways we've served in the name of Jesus this year and going through the items on Christmas day, I had the kids work with me leading up to Christmas. First, they helped me make a list of things we've done to be the hands and feet of Jesus. Then on another day, they wrote and drew on a piece of paper for each item. We never actually went through it on Christmas because I felt the prep time had been more impactful. Lehr and I planned to also make our annual Samaritan's Purse or Buy Less to Save More purchases online with the kids on Christmas Day this year, but between Lehr's knee and me feeding Ruby, we ran out of time.
While we weren't sure if it would be the case or not, we did have the magic of Santa for another year. The kids wrote him notes and left him cookies, and Maddux even left him a chalkboard note in the backyard. She seemed more skeptical than Eli this year, asking several times, "Is he really real?" Ruby woke up at 1AM on Christmas and when I walked to her room, I noticed Eli's bed was empty. Immediately I heard scampering up the steps and Eli's sheepish face appeared. I told him to go back to bed, but didn't follow up with him until later the next night. He said he was just so excited and he had to look. I asked him what he'd seen and he detailed the scene left for the kids by Santa. I do love the innocence in that boy's heart.
The kids had a great day, playing with the gifts they'd given each other and their two other homerun gifts: a skateboard for Eli and roller skates for Maddux. We played a few family games with Mom-Mom and finished the night with our traditional spaghetti and meatballs and birthday cake for Jesus.

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