Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Christmas Season take 1

Christmas has always been a big time of the year in my house. Even when little my mother made a huge to do about it. I always loved the traditions! I will admit to being one of those mothers to totally go overboard a little bit. But I am smart about it. I never put us into debt, and I always plan ahead! This year worked out in my favor ALOT. I found great deals early in the season and there was NO rush around to find stuff last minute! But even though shopping went well, I still always wait till the very end to wrap everything! Seriously I don't wrap a single gift until I have finished shopping for that person! I like to physically see everything together to make sure I didn't forget anything or don't need to add something more!
Since we have so much family local, distant family, and extended families, Christmas is also a BUSY day!! But I enjoy every second of getting to spend time with my familiy when it matters the most. Afterall Christmas is not about presents. Its celebrating the birth of Jesus. I buy gifts purely out of love for my family. I never really want anything specific or even care if I get a gift. I do however LOVE to watch my kids and family open what I bought for them. Their faces warm my heart! And I am sure that is exactly how God intended it to be. Christmas to me is ALL about family, and love!

Our traditions start out on Thanksgiving actually. Since I can remember (probably a good 20 yrs+) my mother and I have gone to the lighting of the Christmas tree in downtown Lawrenceville. Rain, cold, whatever the conditions we have yet to miss one! (actually thats a lie, i did miss the one the year M&M were born, they were just shy of 2 months so no 20 deg weather for them) It's a tradition I have carried on with my girls! They love it just as much as I do! Michael on the other hand is definitely not a fan. lol. For some reason singing "here comes santa clause" 10 times waiting for Santa to arrive doesn't appeal to him. Can't imagine why ;) But regardless, we still will be there every year!
At this time my camera was on its last leg, SO I only have a couple pics my mother snapped that evening!

 I just love Abby's faces when she doesn't want to take a picture.. such a diva.

And after!

Another special thing about the Christmas season in our house, is it is also the Birthday month for my mom (Dec 19th) and my sister (Dec 30th)
This year my moms birthday fell on a Monday, so we celebrated it the Sunday before it. We started the day at church. Which was also the day of our Christmas luncheon after church where my niece Hannah, Abby, and Aaliyah put on an adorable skit in front of the church and sang Silent Night. (Seriously almost made me cry, so sweet!)
After lunch, we went back to my moms house to do cake and presents with her! My mom turned 62 this year, (I think, 63? no def 62) Yet she still looks beyond awesome! Here is a couple pictures from the day. (My aunt made her cake, her favorite movie is A Christmas Story)

 Miss Maggie
 My sister Kathleen, my bro-in-law (and our preacher) John, and my niece Hannah!
 ME and the girls in their Christmas dresses!

(Even though my sisters b-day is after Christmas, I will add it to this post too! Next post will be all about Christmas Eve and Day!)

As I mentioned before my sister Kathleen's birthday is also in December. So we were able to get together for a birthday breakfast with her! Yum!!
My sister was 9 when I was born. And from what I understand wanted nothing to do with me when I was born bc I was a girl. Actually when they came to see me at hospital she walked right past nursery and went to see our mom first! lol. However that changed. My mom told me once I was home my sisters were like my other moms. She said Kathleen would get me out of crib and hold me the whole time company came to see me. lol. She wasn't a great sharer. Also, we look and sound so much alike it is often wierd!! Of course, nowdays I am a big bigger than she, and I rock darker hair. But as far as features go and our voices, you can definitely tell we are sisters!
Through the years her and I were really close. She was a teacher at the daycare my mom worked at, and I went to, so I tagged along practically everywhere with her. She took me shopping on weekends. (*remember when 316 merged onto 85 and you had to immediately cross 6 lanes to get off Pleasant Hill to go to mall??*) Well I was the BEST at telling her when she could get over each time ;) lol  Anyway, when she married I was about 10-11 years old. It was SO weird her moving out and me not seeing her as often. However it created so much more time for me and my oldest sister Elizabeth whom I then had the honor of driving crazy, but also became REALLY close with.
ANYWAY- I say all that to say this. We started going to church more frequently again back in Nov/Dec. Kathleens husband is now a preacher of his own church. It is small. very small. But so nice to go to. Most who attend are elderly and just LOVE my girls! I am thankful that I have such an awesome family. And grateful to have a sister and brother in law who follow the Lord. And can be teachers to me, who is trying her best to get on that same level. I enjoy going to church to learn, but also to be with my family. Everyone who matters is there every Sunday and that is a blessing itself.
Kathleen is THE image of a role model, if ever there was one. She is someone I dearly look up to.
Thus making her birthday worthy of a blog post ;) Love you sis!! (I never thought to ask her before doing this... :/ hopefully she doesn't mind!!!)

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