Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Memories

I love Christmas time. I love everything about it. I especially love making memories. I have three favorite Christmas memories. My first favorite Christmas memory was when I was around 7 years old. My mom came to me and said that Santa Claus might not make it to our house that year. (I loved being a child. I never knew that we were poor.) Momma explained to me that I had been a really good girl that year but that Santa wanted me to give my gifts to other kids that didn't have any toys. Truth was, she didn't have the money to buy anything. She was already working 2 jobs to pay the bills. She told me the story of Jesus and how he was born in a manger. Not a heated room. That he slept with the animals on hay in a tiny bed. I thought Jesus had it made. I mean, I was a tomboy and to sleep outside with the animals sounded awesome to me. However, I understood her point. I learned that Christmas that it wasn't about receiving gifts but giving them. Just like Jesus did for us. Well, we didn't have a tree and definitely couldn't afford to buy one so we found green paper and we cut out our very own paper tree that we hung on the living room wall. We popped popcorn and used a needle and thread to sew them together. We used construction paper to make rings that made our garland. We had the prettiest tree ever that year. My mom and I made it together. I went to bed. When I woke up the next morning I walked into our living room and saw a huge Christmas tree decorated with real ornaments and lights that lit up the room. Underneath the tree were boxes that were wrapped and addressed to me from Santa. And in the tree was an envelope addressed to my mom. My mom's best friend provided Christmas that year for my mom and I. She did it out of the kindness of her heart. No expectations in return, just because. That Christmas I learned about the miracle of Jesus and that Christmas wasn't about getting gifts but rather understanding the sacrifice of the gift that was given to us. However, I did enjoy playing my new Nintendo all day long that day.

The second of 3 favorite memories was Christmas 1999. Joe and I were a couple and had been dating for a few months. Of course, we had known each other for quite sometime. Joe came over to our house that morning and asked me if I could help him carry gifts inside. As I went outside he asked me to sit down. So I sat down in the driver seat of his little car. He got down on one knee and said this "this driveway was the first place I ever told you that I loved you. I do love you. Will you be my wife and marry me?" My mom and dad were looking out the living room window watching it all. I of course accepted with pure joy. We went to my grandparents house afterwards and I loved showing off my beautiful engagement ring.

My most favorite Christmas memory was in 2003! I've shared my testimony before so I will not go into detail but that was the first day that Joe and I got to hold our little boys for the first time. That was our first Christmas as parents. We celebrated in the hospital but it was such a blessing. It's hard to believe that was 7 years ago almost.

I love Christmas. I love memories. I am looking forward to making many more.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Halloween, Anniversary, Thanksgiving and more...

So, it's been a minute. I'm terrible at keeping up with my blog. I have a friend that blogs almost everyday. She's so good at it. I always wonder what the point is and wonder if anyone even reads them. So, I will take my chance and update you on what's been going on.

Halloween: Quite possibly my least favorite holiday. I just don't get it. I never cared for dressing up and going from house to house to get candy from strangers. I mean, we teach our kids not to take candy from strangers. All the same, I refuse to be the fuddy duddy mom. We did the usual pumpkin carvings. The boys picked out their pumpkins and even a carving kit. When we got home I asked them which kit they wanted to use and they both said that they wanted a Christian pumpkin. They wanted thier pumpkins to represent them and who they are. So, with the help from a note their teacher sent home we carved our pumpkins into Christian pumpkins. This is the little poem we used to carve our pumpkins: Dear God,
As I carve my pumpkin help me say this prayer:

Open my mind so I can learn about You;
(Cut the top of the pumpkin)

Take away all my sin and forgive me for the wrong things I do.
(Clean out the inside)

Open my eyes so Your love I will see;
(Cut the eyes out in heart shapes)

I'm so sorry for turning up my nose to all you've given me.
(Cut a nose in the shape of a cross)

Open my ears so your word I will hear.
(Cut the ears shaped like the Bible)-we did rectangles

Open my mouth so I can tell others You're near
(cut the mouth in the shape of a fish)

Let Your light shine in all I say and do! Amen.
(Place a candle inside and light it)

I could not have been more proud of my sweet boys for putting a Biblical spin on a holiday based from paganism. This year Ethan dressed as a Knight, Bryce dressed as a fireman and Maggie was a flower. They were adorable.

Anniversary: This year Joe and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. I cannot believe 10 years have come so quickly. And what an amazing ten years it has been. Joe and I married just a few months after I graduated from highschool so my wedding dress was very small. So to make a long story short, after 2 pregnancies and working my booty off getting weight off, I was able to fit into my dress. I was only able to get it zipped half way but to be tactful, it wasn't because of my weight.

Joe and I were able to celebrate our anniversary with another couple that we've become pretty close with. Their anniversary is November 30th so they were able to celebrate at the same time. For our anniversary, we were given a weekend to the mountains. We stayed at a gorgeous cabin. We were told once we got to the top of the driveway NOT to stop and to punch it. was cold and damp. I was driving. We were going up and up and up this hill and we reached the top when we got stuck! Tires were spinning and gravel was flying. I was so nervous. Our friend Shanna gets car sick very easily so she got out to prevent that from happening and her husband Jason got out to help me figure out the best way to go. My car ended up at the bottom of the hill with the help of Joe guiding Jason down the weavy entrance. We definitly got our workouts in walking up and down the hill. It made for some pretty good comic relief. We pretty much stayed at the cabin the whole time. We bought groceries and played games. It was nice to get away and relax with friends.

Thanksgiving: Quite possibly my favorite holiday. I love getting together as a big family. Joe's family is HUGE. I will never forget the first time I joined the Wilburn clan for Thanksgiving. He has so many aunts and uncles and then you add cousins/2nd cousins/3rd cousins, etc. It's ridiculous how big his family is. Usually Joe will deep fry a cajun turkey but this year I baked a cajun turkey. It was really good and looked good too. I was pretty proud of myself. I'm not exactly Betty Crocker but I try. I was really hoping to be in a new home this year but I know that God's got it out there and He's just waiting for the perfect time to give it to us.

So, now we're approaching Christmas. I hope that each of you have a wonderful Christmas and I hope that you all remember why we celebrate it. Merry Christmas to all of you!