Happy New Year! We pray that this greeting finds all of you safe and well! Things are just starting to return to "normal" here in our home. We've had a lovely Christmas season and are thankful for the new beginnings that continue to greet our family.
Christmas is a crazy-busy time for us. It is for most people, but added to the mix is the fact that my birthday, both of my parents' birthdays, and my only sibling's birthday all fall the week of Christmas, too. And birthdays were always a big deal in my family growing up so we always spend at least part of the day with the birthday-person, doing whatever activity they like. So, needless to say, we've had a whole week of partying around here! Fun, but tiring! We also had company; my parents stayed with us from just before Christmas until today. It's been a whirlwind!
Despite all the hustle and bustle, we tried to keep Christmas itself pretty simple. Baby's first Christmas is really pretty amazing. There's something so sweet about the innocence in their eyes. And thinking about Mary and Joseph and their newborn son when you've got your own young son in your arms is a special kind of eye-opening. I will always cherish this season we've had and the experiences we had as a family, the ways we've come to know and understand God better, and the deep joy we experience with this precious boy in our home.
We participated in a lot of seasonal activities like baking, going Christmas caroling, looking at Christmas lights, going to a Christmas Party, attending a Christmas concert, and of course, attending church as normal. I LOVE that Christmas Eve fell on a Saturday, making Christmas morning a Sunday, so we got to attend church both Saturday night and Sunday morning. I wish Christmas could fall that way every year--it's so perfectly appropriate to spend the celebration of Christ's birth in fellowship and worship with other believers.
At home, we tried to keep things simple. We purchased just a few small toys for Matthew. The grandparents gave him practical and/or sentimental things. We don't "do" Santa Claus in our home so that keeps things pretty simple, too. After Christmas Eve service, we opened stockings (which we stuff for each other-no Santa needed). We read Matthew the Christmas story and put him to bed. Early the next morning, he saw the Christmas presents under the tree for the first time. That was sweet. Babies don't care what's in the packages-they just love the colors and bows. I love the innocence. We attended church, and came home. We put Matthew down for a nap which gave me time to put lunch together. We had both sets of grandparents and my brother over for a leisurely afternoon. Matthew opened his presents, and we all enjoyed watching him play.
My dad and DH both returned to work this past week, but my mom and I had some time to hang out this week, which was nice. We'll celebrate Christmas tomorrow with DH's brother and their parents, and then Tuesday ushers back in our "normal" life.
Baby has woken so I must wrap up suddenly, but I'll leave you with a photo or two:
Momma, there's a bow on my head:
Our Christmas Card
And lastly, a little video. My brother gave Matthew this big musical toy thing. Matthew LOVES music. LOVES it. He dances whenever he can. He even dances to "Away in a Manger" on his Nativity. So here he is, boogying down:
Ok, bye! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!