Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Five Christmases

This is the ninth year that Kyle and I have celebrated Christmas as a couple. And as a couple we now answer to many family members, especially at Christmas time. For years we celebrated, and I mean the whole deal..presents, family, food, Christmas five times over a few days. Today we celebrate Christmas 4 1/2 times, we have only cut out one of those celebrations and we still do visit that family, it's just not on the official celebration day.

Whenever the topic of Christmas plans would come up and people would find out that we would be traveling to visit all of our families and celebrate Christmas five times, they would look at us like we were perhaps a little nutty or at least push overs. They would always say to us, well when you have kids you'll have to change that and do what's best for your family.

During the crazy busy moments, when we're shopping for a large number of people, wrapping, cooking, and packing to go, I sometimes agree, but those moments are brief and passing. The thing is Kyle and I really enjoy our family, even if it means celebrating Christmas five times.

As I sat on Christmas Eve trying to finish up my wrapping, a woman called into the local Christian radio station for prayer. She asked that we pray for her because this year she and her husband could not afford to travel to visit family. God whispered in my ear in that moment, what a privilege and blessing it was that I not only had so much family that I loved, but I could afford to drive to visit them all.

There are some stresses that come from the travel and the visits, but mostly it is a gift. One that I realize will not always be, one that many, many people long for each year, a room full of people who love you to laugh with and celebrate the birth of our Savior.

It is also a gift to have 360 days before we have to do it again!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Go tell it on the mountain

Jesus Christ is Born!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours.

I hope that whatever this day holds for you, that it is a day to remember how much God loves you. I cannot wrap my mind around a love that would cause the Lord of the universe to come to this earth to find me. Why He would leave a perfect place to live on this earth and suffer and die, I don't fully understand. Out of all the gifts I received today, I am most thankful for the gift of eternal life He gave me.
"But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son; and you shall call his name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins." Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: "BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL," which translated means, "GOD WITH US." -The Bible, Matthew 1:20-23

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Watching God work

I have a friend who's blog has been so powerful and meaningful to me this past month that I want to pass it on to you.

Nilam has taken this month to post on a positive thing in her life each day. I'm sure it's much harder than it seems, especially since it has to be a unique thing each day. Ironically she began this journey as she was going through a difficult time in her life and marriage.

It is her story to tell, not mine, so you'll have to read her blog for any of the details she chooses to share. But as I told her, reading her story, has caused me to stop and praise God, it has reminded me that He is active and our prayers are powerful. It has been a blessing to get to watch Him work in her life, to see that if we let Him, he can take our darkest moments and turn them around.

I hope that you'll read it, especially if you're going through a hard time, be hopeful that God can turn things around, and even though you can't see it, there is something better just around the corner.

You can begin reading about her journey in this post.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A funny blog

Oh I just have to pass on a blog post that made me laugh out loud from the Big Mama Blog, here it is enjoy!

PS-It was the part about the vest that cracked me up, really what are people thinking wearing ugly clothes from the 80's again.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Local Salvation Army need

I just got around to picking up my paper and saw on the cover that the local Salvation Army still has 200! children from the Angel tree who have not been adopted, and today is the last day to adopt a child. I just wanted to pass this along to those of you who don't get the Eagle, in case you would like help meet this need or pray for this need.

If you would like to adopt a child(ren) from the Angel tree call 361-0618 or go to Post Oak Mall's food court.

I hope y'all are enjoying the wonderful gift of giving this Christmas season.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

12 days till Christmas

What the hey!

Someone just said it's 12 days till Christmas!

There is still so much to do.

Someday I'd like to have it together enough to get all my things done and save enough time, like a full two weeks, to actually enjoy Christmas.

Doesn't that sound nice. Just sitting still looking at your Christmas tree, drinking hot cocoa, laughing with your family and actually enjoying, reflecting, remembering.

Remembering what this is really all about. That You (God) love us that much. That you would really leave your heavenly home and come live in this world. Would grow up suffer a horrible death on a cross. Pay the penalty for my sins, be buried, and overcome death. Just because you love me.

I hope someday I get it right. That someday, I am overwhelmed this season by just how much God loves me. That I become fully aware that what we're celebrating is the most amazing love story ever told.

I hope you find some stillness this Christmas season, some time to just sit and know that He is God. That He came here only because He loved you. That He came here for you, and today He is still crazy in love with you and going to great lengths to meet with you.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christa]">[a] the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

13Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14"Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

15When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about."

16So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Luke 2:8-20

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Now that we've gotcha

Today is a special day for our family, it's Jack's "Gotcha Day". One year ago today, we walked down to our adoption agency (very fast, because we were late!) and were officially handed our son to take home with us.
Looking back on it, I can remember so many details, how excited we were, how nervous, how overwhelmed. There were so many tears shed by all of us on that day, and the days that followed. I was so careful to keep my eyes on Christ during that process, I never let it sink in that what we were doing was stressful or difficult. In retrospect I am amazed at just how
easy it all was, just how peaceful the process, that could have been completely unnerving. Let's just say traveling for over 24 hours with an infant that you just met you is not the easiest thing I've ever done, but the entire time I felt like I was traveling with a very important person and everyone went out of their way to make our life easier. God definitely went before us and prepared a way, I felt held by the prayers of all our friends and family.

I know everyone says this, but I really cannot believe Jack has been home for a whole year. I cannot imagine our family without him. He has made us a stronger family, a family that counts their blessings more often, a family that laughs a lot!

I often look at Jack and am overwhelmed by what adoption has meant to us, that somehow that little boy, who's my son, was born in another country, not of my body. I don't understand it, but I know that it is the best thing in my life.

Jack-I'm so glad that I've gotcha, this is such a happy day for all of us. Our love for you is so big it hurts our hearts and causes our eyes to leak. Now that we've gotcha, will we never let you go.

*The picture was taken last year on December 11th as we waited for our flight to leave in the Seoul, Korea airport, Jack is in the carrier sleeping, so I'm resting too.*

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Father Botros

This interview was so moving, join me in praying for Father Botros and his ministry to share the love of Christ with Muslims around the world.

Saturday, December 5, 2009


Today our church had a "Parent's Day Out", that's right you guessed it, a day when you can drop off your children for five hours and get some Christmas shopping done! It's practically free to boot.

We got a lot of our shopping done, and really enjoyed a break from the kids, I told Kyle that it was the first time since my cruise this summer that I can remember missing them. It's always good to have days when you get to miss your kids.

I wanted to pass on a great toy store that we got most of the kids toys at, Jacque's, on Texas Ave. in Bryan. I know it's not a new store and cetainly most people have heard of it, but have you shopped there? It was so much bigger than I expected, and full of wonderful and mostly educational toys. We were in the store for over an hour and everytime I walked back through the store I saw 10 things I had missed the first time. Their prices were great, you support the local economy by shopping there, and get this...FREE gift wrapping. I'm talking, cuter than you can wrap, gift wrapping (okay maybe equal for you crafty folks, but you get the picture). I highly recommend Jacque's this year to get your kids some really unique and educational or just fun toys.