Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Time, Part II

When I hear the word "procastination" my blood pressure goes up ever so slightly.  Whenever I wait to do something I know I should do or have to do, it feels like I've backed myself into a corner, and that's not a good feeling.  I can't knock that system since I'm married to a very effective procrastinator who does amazingly well operating under those conditions, but I don't usually fair as well when I try to do the same.  Though I'm far from where I'd like to be, I do try to stay on top of things.

Ok, so...what was that tangent?  Oh yes.  I was thinking about waiting to do my Christmas post until it felt easier, but I know from experience, at least for me, the longer I wait the more impossible the task will seem.  So this is me fighting against the urge to wait just one. more. day.

Christmas was amazingly wonderful, as it always is.  My aunt and uncle and two cousins came from NY and PA to spend Christmas with us, as we have nearly every year in my memory.  It is also my parents and their spouses and my three siblings and their families and together that makes 16 adults and 14 (soon to be 15...anyday!) kids, ages 11 and under.  We refer to it as controlled chaos.  

One of my very favorite traditions is the Christmas Eve candlelight service at our church.  So special...tender yet powerful.   After the busyness of Christmas prep, its always such a welcome calm and refocusing. 

After church we go to my sister's house and feast on the goodness she has prepared. 
 Sweet girls.
ALL the cousins on my side and a Christmas miracle getting this picture.  Completely surreal that these are the offspring of me and my siblings.  Just yesterday it seems, the four of us were out playing house in the yard or splashing around in the pool.
 Yay for a family picture!
 Tradition...Daddy reads the kids Twas The Night Before Christmas before they fade off.
 Tradition...a bow assembly line for the crew who had to pack up all their presents and travel.
 Tradition...baby snuggles (these, by the way, are best first thing in the morning)

 Bad idea...trying this would-be cute shot as Aiden is headed up for his morning nap.

 Ah, the two babies had some sleep...smiles again!
We were all pretty impressed that the kids were not anxious to open their presents.  They were thrilled to be together, playing and presents were very low on their priority list.
Lainie is so sweet with Aiden.

Aiden got all he wanted for Christmas.  Baw!  Baw!
 The adults pick names and the kids pick names and still the tree looks like this.
Tradition...In the evening after dinner we all gathered for the second (now annual) "talent" show.  This year there was Christmas song trivia, singing, scripture quoting, dancing.  A highlight was my brother and his quite pregnant wife acting out the nativity story...hilarious!

 For our part, Avery played a little song on the piano, Amanda "read" everyone a story, which is just her imagination and pulling phrases from every book she's ever read and putting it all together and I put together a slideshow of Christmas up to that point.  Shaun and Aiden cheered from the sidelines.

 Later in the evening Shaun's two brothers and their families came over.
Such a good day.  I am truly....Blessed!
When the angels returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, 
“Let’s go right now to Bethlehem and see what’s happened. Let’s confirm what the Lord has revealed to us.” They went quickly and found Mary and Joseph, 
and the baby lying in the manger. When they saw this, they reported what they had been told about this child. 

Everyone who heard it was amazed at what the shepherds told them. Mary committed these things to memory and considered them carefully. The shepherds returned home, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. Everything happened just as they had been told.

Luke 2


Melody said...

Beautiful post, Lisa! These pics are wonderful, and I love how you went through all the specialness that is Christmas. You're awesome!

{Thirty} Little Piggies said...

I love your family! You all do such awesome things together. And the amount of kiddos that you and your siblings have is quite impressive! Such awesome memories they'll have of their cousins.

I'm delighted to hear you guys are looking into foster care! We also would love to do that, but our frequent travel would make it nearly impossible. My parents did foster care, and eventually adopted my little sister, who is now 13. It has been a huge blessing to our entire family. I plan on writing much more on the topic of adoption in the coming months and likely, years. I'll be anxious to read about your journey as you love on kids and fill the need in the way God is telling you to.

Oh, we didn't do all "E" names, we have a Mason {Michael} right in the middle! Wish I could have come up with 3 "E" names that I loved, but "Mason" fits my little middle maniac man just perfectly!

Are you doing Beth's scripture memory this year? I am and I'm so excited to get back into the grove with some good accountability. Those memory verses grow my faith in such awesome ways. I really, really hope to make it to Texas for the Siesta Scripture Team gathering in January 2012!

Have a BLESSED 2011! I'm just sure you will!

{Sorry for the longest comment of all time!} :)