First of all, we had a wonderful visit with family in Tennessee. There never seems like enough time when we are home even though we got four full days and were able to spend one whole day with each of the different families we have been blessed with.. still never enough. Anyways so we had to pack up and leave today... very sad! I love spending time with family of course, but it is extra special now to see my son love them too and enjoy seeing them. He grows so much in between each visit so I love seeing them get to know him even more each time. His little voice calling out to each of them this time was too sweet.
Its always hard to leave family but this time was different. It will be the first Christmas either of us have been away from our families. Yes, I know I am almost 28, but I still love the feeling of being in my parents home and reliving my childhood each Christmas morning with them. It is definitely going to be hard tomorrow waking up and not being able to see them or do any of the typical traditions I have always known... oh the emotions.
In the same way that I am sad about it though, I am honestly excited as well about having our first Christmas as a family in our home. Griffin understands, well mostly, what is going on and has such a joy about everything that we do for the holiday and it makes it fun. We also want to start our own traditions and will now be able to do that. Blessings.
After driving back 6 1/2 hours and just really feeling down the whole drive, we arrived at church this evening for our Christmas Eve service. I was tired, bummed about leaving and yet trying to remain positive. It didnt take long before we were completely blessed by our church family. I have raved many times before about how they have honestly taken us in as their own, but today was so sweet. We first were showered with TONS of Christmas cards. Then opened a note from one special family that went something like this: We know its hard to be away from your family this Christmas, so we wanted to share some of our family's favorite Christmas traditions with you. We proceeded to read that they had bought each of us a gift AND left us food for our Christmas dinner, complete with a ham, mashed potatoes, broccoli casserole and dessert. SIMPLY. AMAZED. Really? A family did this for us?!?! I mean I had worried on the way home about what we would even do for food tomorrow. I am used to getting presents, but not cooking on Christmas. Problem solved and completely blessed by their generosity. We also received a gift card from another family for a date at the movies and our son was spoiled with more gifts than he could carry. COMPLETELY BLESSED.
Another emotion of the already emotion filled day- stunned. So we had received some Christmas money and decided on the way home that we would actually put it together this year and buy something bigger instead little stuff individually like normal. My stepdad had gotten this really nice recliner that we both fell in love with and so since we have never purchased a piece of furniture since we had been married, we thought it would be nice to have one too. This thing was NICE! Leather, a great deal and the most comfortable thing I had ever sat in. Well we called around to different stores to try and find that exact one and were finally able to track one down. JR was very eager to get it so that we could actually have it on Christmas day so we made arrangements to borrow a truck from a church family and rush to go get it after church before they closed. Well.... no way in the world that this would EVER happen to anyone, but yes this is a true story. JR went and loaded it in the truck and started driving back down the interstate to our house. Next thing he knows, he looks back and sees the box in the lights of the person behind him. It had flown out of the truck bed, into the middle of the road, and before he could even get pulled over to try and get it, it was hit SEVERAL times. He said it looked like a disaster in the middle of the interstate, cotton fluff everywhere and the entire box destroyed. YES. REALLY. So bless his heart he called me about 20 minutes later after the cops had been called to clear the mess and had to tell me the news. I honestly thought he was playing a joke because we were both giddy the whole way back about getting it. But NO... it really happened. So we had to get our heads wrapped around the fact that thankfully no one was hurt and in the grand scheme of things it was just a piece of furniture. But it was ALL of our Christmas money and just a terrible terrible sad time. We finally got home around 7:30, unloaded the car and just sat in astonishment. REALLY? Haha thats all we could both say. SICK. AT. OUR. STOMACHS! How could this have happened? My sweet husband felt AWFUL.... even when I kept reminding him that it was seriously just a piece of furniture.
And if all of those emotions werent enough for one day... my mind constantly went back to the feeling I had tonight in our service. Simply amazed by the gift of Jesus. I still cant get over it. Every year it seems that God reveals more and more to me during this time, truly what this time is about. I of course know its Jesus' birthday. I know we celebrate by giving gifts because God gave us the ultimate gift of His Son. But for all of that to sink in... I realize it might just take a Christmas of not running around from house to house, exchanging gifts and the day passing all too quickly before I can even wrap my mind around it. I am thankful for this year being able to have the chance to reflect on it, teach my son the true meaning and just soak in every minute.
This is my new favorite Christmas song and it speaks MULTITUDES. Take some time to listen to it. He is the reason for this season. I am SO thankful this child was born.
So as my good friend Leah said on her blog, as wonderful as the lights, food, music, and presents are, the greatest thing we celebrate this Christmas season is the coming of Jesus Christ to earth as a baby, who grew into a man, who lived a perfect sinless life and who died a horrible death to deliver us from our sins. We pray that the truth of Christ's incarnation will be real in your lives this Christmas!
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. Galatians 4:4-5
Merry Christmas my blog family!!!