happy. freakin. holidays.

ours went something like this…
a psycho tree. fighting off sickness. two long road trips. consumerism craziness…
and peace.
Emmanuel ~ God with us.
’twas the night before Christmas and all thru the Bab’s house, no one was stirring ~ not even the mouse who had pooped in their mini van last month…
the stockings were hung by the window with care, in hopes that mom and dad had all the presents wrapped up with care ~ under the most prickly, pointy, painful Christmas tree known to man…

the wee babs were nestled all snug in their beds ~ while visions of mom and dad wrapping what they written down on their Christmas lists danced in their heads…
and i in my stretchy pants and p.a. in his beanie cap ~ had just settled down to watch Trapped In Paradise as we wrapped… 

after the wrapping was finished, there arose such a laughter ~ as we then watched Christmas episodes of The Office and stayed up a lot later…
we sprang from the couch after the clock turned two a.m. ~ the kids will be up extraordinarily early and we will regret staying up late, yet again.

coffee would need to be consumed first, before they opened their gifts ~ our kids should know…
and they patiently waited on us between the hours of 5:45am [when they woke up] and 8:30am [when we woke up] ~ wouldn’t you know…
inhaling coffee, devouring cinnamon rolls and the Bible Christmas story was read ~ before any gifts were opened around here…
and their anticipation grew ~ as the time to find out what they were getting for Christmas drew near…
excitement enveloped the living room ~ and the time to open presents came quick…
each child was handed a gift to open since they couldn’t be near the tree, or they would be pricked ~ by the dagger needles on the psycho tree we picked from the lot on 256…
squeals of joy and thanks followed each unwrapping ~ as we had previously encouraged no one to complain…
and focusing on the birth of Jesus as the reason we celebrate, thinking *whew* ~ we survived Christmas shopping, once again… 

~happy*freakin holiday*truths~
about our psycho tree…
we picked out our tree from a lot on the main drag in our ‘burb.
it’s basically like the wal-mart of Christmas tree shopping.
every year we look forward to the tradition of picking out our tree.
we’ve bought trees from this lot in the past – but this year this one turned psycho on us.
we watered it – but the needles were so sharp – we could’ve drenched it with water and it would not have mattered.
so we threw the decorations on – and enjoyed it – from a distance.
about consumerism…
when the week before Christmas rolls around, we always seem to think up some last minute shopping to do – for crap we don’t need – no matter how much we plan ahead or tell ourselves we will limit our shopping. 
we plan to spend around $50 on each of our kids – but usually we manage to spend closer to $75 per kid – and that seems like a lot of money to spend on what is – essentially – crap.
this year Soleil (8) said, “mommy, i think you are buying me too much stuff.” *ouch*
out of the mouths of babes… this girl has wisdom.
she made Salem a Lego board game – it was one of his favorite gifts.
but we love to give to our kids – so we buy stuff we know they will enjoy – thinking ‘it will bring them happiness’. 
and once again we -walk right into- the trap of consumerism.
and the gifts we have utilized the most since christmas are the *family* gifts we bought – dominoes and table top ping pong – because what our kids enjoy most is spending time with us.
thankfully, they know the gifts they receive are only temporary – they won’t last forever – and they are all made in China.
about our road trip…
this holiday season we did something we’ve never done – we drove to and from Oklahoma (to visit my side of the family) for Thanksgiving and Christmas – that’s a total of 3,700+ miles with three kids 8 and under.
we’ve now declared ourselves legally insane -not really- but we are slightly crazy.
in all seriousness, we had a peace and excitement for the travel. 
there were many moments the Lord reminded me my purpose in going was to just “be”. 
be with family and friends we rarely see – enjoy the brief moments of time we had with them.
enjoy the moments with the kids and Adam – even the moments we felt ‘trapped’ in the car for 17 hours.

about sickness…
we were all sick on and off during the month of December – Soleil and Salem missed several days of school – and Soleil missed out on her holiday party 😦 
our kids always want to make a gingerbread house every Christmas – and i never do because i never feel like making one – so this year i tried, since Soleil missed her party – and it sucked (but the kids didn’t care-they were just happy i tried)
i never stressed too much about Christmas while we were sick – there was so much out of my control – and the whole experience taught me a lot about trust, rest and peace.
in our sickness, we were weak – and in our weakness, we had peace – and in that peace, we had rest. God was there.
Emmanuel ~ God with us.
thru the freakin holidays and always. 
Happy New Year Everyone!

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