What a Christmas!

I hope that each of you that read this post had as wonderful of a Christmas that we did! This year our family decided to really cut back on the gifts and concentrate on celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ and also the love we share as a family.

We kicked off the holiday week by helping out at the senior's dinner our minister's wife organizes each year. It is an elegant evening with candlelight dinner and music entertainment to honor the generation above us for all they have done and continue to do in our church. I waitressed a table and Ian was a bus boy. Luckily neither of us spilled or dropped anything, so our participation was a success!

Friday night we headed to Lincolnton for the annual CCC staff Christmas party. It is a time for former staff members to gather and reconnect and celebrate. Each year the crowd seems to grow younger ~ I guess that is because it has now been 10 years since Ian and I were on staff ~ but CCC is a close knit family of believers and I wouldn't miss the party!

Saturday (after still trying to sleep off the ick that one of my preschoolers gave me for Christmas) we participated in our family's annual cookie bake-a-thon. That entails Ian and I, Adam & Traci, my mom, Ian's mom, my cousin Monica & her husband Brent plus their little girl Chloe, my cousin Erin and her kids Kyler and Bryson ~ Jamie her husband was sick, and my cousin Chad and his girlfriend Caroline, and my Aunt Nancy and her husband Mike. From the time we arrived at 5:30 until around 11:30, cookies were in the oven. Each family unit brings over dough that they mixed at home and we bake, bake, bake and then swap the yummies! This year we had some new additions and some of the classic favorites ~ Traci's gingerbread, Mom's wedding cookies, Aunt Nancy's holiday M&M cookies. We played a few rousing rounds of "Why & Because" and ate WAY TOO MUCH!

Sunday of course was a beautiful ~ and packed ~ church service followed by some chill time at Mama's. Then around 5:30 the family (all the above mentioned from cookie night ~ minus Erin & family as they celebrate Christmas Eve with Jamie's family and then add our friend Lee) started to arrive for our annual fondue fest. It starts with Aunt Nancy's cheese fondue recipe, continues with a course of sirloin steak, chicken, and meatballs accompanied by delicious handmade sauces and then finishes with Mama's chocolate fondue. Again, we ate far more than we should have, but it is a delightful long meal with lots of laughs and stories around the table. After the meal we sat around in the living room drinking coffee and cider and sneaking more chocolate while playing Apples to Apples. Finally everyone headed out so we could get to the 11:30 Christmas Eve service down at church.

Christmas Day started here at home for Ian and I as we exchanged our one gift to each other this year. Then we headed to Mama's to meet Adam & Traci and Ian's mom for our traditional family brunch. After going through our stockings ~ that was the rules this year, everything was stocking stuffers ~ Adam & Traci headed to Boone to visit his parents and the rest of us napped. Mama and Mom came over to our house for an experimental dinner and then we rode to Mcadanville to see the lights.

All in all, I found myself so much more concentrating on the birth of Jesus this year. Maybe it's because I finally can relate more to Mary (as I'm now a mother), maybe because our bible study and Sunday School classes really concentrated on digging into the nativity story this year, or maybe it is because we decided to see beyond the ribbons and bows. Whatever the cause, it was a very meaningful Christmas for us, and I hope it was for you too!

1 comment:

LaoLao Shultz said...

What a Christmas! We had Kylie's picture taped to a little chair that I have for her that says "My Own Little Chair". We had decided that going to China to get her was our gift to each other this year.
So we opened stockings and had brunch. Then Traci and Adam were off to Boone and the other four of us rested and then went to Kristi's for an amazing
"scollop",Christmas dinner. Next year with Kylie will be out of this world!