Saturday, December 22, 2012

Christmas Continues

Well here we are only 3 days away from Christmas morning.  And as usual, I am scrambling around trying to get "it" all done.  As in, I began the day bright and early at the local outlet malls finishing up my Christmas shopping.  The thing is, I started early this year, but I somehow still had last minute things to do.  Of course.  I even was there when they opened (okay, okay, 15 minutes after they opened), and the parking lot was already packed, but it was still better than it could have been.  Scott tried to drop me off at the store last night, while he waited in the car with the kids, but when I walked in and saw the check out line stretched all the way to the back of the store, I marched right back out and said I would come back alone in the morning, by myself.

I think this Christmas more than ever, I have thought a lot about how life doesn't stop just because it's Christmas time.  There is, of course, tragedy, that reminds me that Christmas isn't all magical and Santa Claus, and then there is the day to day that sneaks in and reminds me.  John is still almost three and getting more spankings, and therefore more hugs and "I love yous" than ever before in his short little life.  His bad attitude and tendency toward disobedience doesn't stop because it's Christmas.  Sickness and fever and general inconvenience gets added to the mix, and John isn't really in the "Christmas spirit."  And I just feel a general heaviness in my heart.  But, I think that heaviness at Christmas isn't necessarily inappropriate.  It might even make the miracle of Christ coming as a man to rescue us and redeem us even more hopeful, even more miraculous, and even more worth celebrating.  He has come because of the weight of this world.  And I just keep thinking,  "This is not the end of the story!!"  He came once and He is coming again.  And as Ada and I talk about all the time, the hurt will be over.  She asks, "you mean, it won't even hurt when we fall down?  And there won't be any more scary dreams?"  And little John's heart will want to obey. My heart will want to obey. He is coming again, and he will right this world. 

"Advent teaches us, who so desperately want to work to save ourselves, to wait for the One who came to save us and will come again to redeem us."

-Nick Lannon-

(found the above quote here--a church we will be visiting in the new year as we draw closer and closer to the "big move.")

Anyway, I really just wanted to post a few pictures of us, the Moore Family, doing our best to celebrate Christmas.  And to say, we will be traveling to Alabama for almost a full week, splitting our time between the two families.  I wanted to do a quick "check in" before heading out on Christmas day. 

 What we have here is us trying to our own version of Advent.  We have had this little sticker count down since Ada was around John's age, and it has worked well for us.  I can't remember exactly where we got them, so I can't link to it.  Basically, each night we read and discuss a few verses of the "Christmas story," and then Ada and John put a sticker on the chart, counting down the days until Christmas.  At the top of the "path" is a picture of Mary and Joseph on their way to Bethlehem, and at the bottom is the manger, which you can see above.  Okay, this is all well and good in theory, but Scott grabbed the camera the other night and captured how it really goes.  Ada loved doing this sticker count down even when she was younger than John. But John likes to put the stickers all over his face, not on his chart, usually on his chin, cheeks, eyes, etc, and then he says, "look, I'm Santa Claus!" which he clearly thinks is hilarious (as does Ada).  Then usually at some point, Ada starts a string of sneezes that goes on for a long while (Ada sneezes a LOT, like in the middle of the night, first thing in the morning, during Advent "time", etc. etc.  she keeps a kleenex box near her at all times), and it's hard to talk above the sneezing and the nose blowing. 
 Then when John is bored with covering his face with stickers, and usually as we are trying to each go around and pray and thank God for a specific thing--that he sent his son, or to help us to love him more than our "treasure" (that was last night's as we talked about the wise men), John opts to try to stand on his head instead.  And at some point, being really honest, I get super frustrated and might even say out loud in an annoyed tone "let's just put them to bed."  I mean, there is never a more clear picture of how much we need Jesus and his rescuing us than when I try to do Advent with our kids ;)

 Next Christmas event.  Cookie making and decorating.  This year, knowing that Ada was counting on this, and also knowing that time and energy were quickly running out, I just grabbed a cookie mix and a tub of betty crocker frosting, and called it a day ;) 

 I just realized that we haven't decorated the cookies yet, and I am sure I will take pictures of that as well.  Probably should have waited to post this ;)  Oh well.

 All our Christmas cards.  Isn't it so much fun to check the mail during the Christmas season?  Ada and I love it.  Well, Ada loves it all the time.  She holds on to such hope every single time that she checks the mail that there will be something just for her.
 Christmas countdown sign, thanks to Ann.  And the Nativity Set that my mom sent me as an early Christmas gift.  I am so excited to have it!!!  Before this, I only had the fisher price little people nativity set. 
 My favorite book to read at Christmas.  I've blogged about it before.
The cookies, ready to be decorated as soon as John wakes up from his nap.  Ada is not waiting as patiently as the cookies.

And what our house really looks like at Christmas, messy and football on tv (will the football season never end?), and a very haphazardly decorated tree.

Merry Christmas!!!!


Mary Ann said...

Such a great post! Had to get tickled at John's antics, and Ada's sneezing so much, all during Advent lesson time.

Your house looks so cozy, warm and Christmasy.

Love y'all.

Laura said...

Once again, thank you for being real. It is such a relief to see other families not doing it "all" during the Christmas season. I am afraid that my Jack is just like your John. And with a new baby around here, it makes it all that much harder. Thankful for His Grace!! :) Much love to you guys! Have a great time at home with the fam, please tell them hello for me. Love you friend!

Jodie said...

love your wisdom. I have one who stands on her head too at inopportune You say what we all feel at times. Hope your Christmas day is magical!