Its Christmas, All Over Again

Well, its that time of year again when we all get festive and (hopefully) productive to make the most of the season between Thanksgiving to New Years. There are loads of parties and cookies exchanges and cards and presents. 
 Our first party was at the home of Sullivan. (Do you remember him from Halloween?)
As you know, I’m obsessed with food so I had to include some pictures of the spread.
They were kind enough to have dairy free options just for me.

Except for this – baked brie!
Later in the evening, there was a knock at the door.  Who could that be?
Its Santa!
Brooks wasn’t so sure.
What a fantastic Santa!  He read a story, spent one-on-one time with each child, and gave them each a present.
The adults were enamored too.
Our only shot before Brooks jumped off his lap.  Silas was sound asleep upstairs so he missed out on all the fun.
Presents!
Brooks got an airplane.  He sleeps with it almost every night.
While the adults, ate, drank, and socialized, the kids made a mess of their living room.  
We also learned about a Danish Christmas tradition – decorating an Advent candle.  I think this was supposed to be a family activity but of course the moms were the ones who did all the work.
The party got me excited about our own traditions and tree, but we didn’t get around to decorating until last weekend.
This is the first year that Brooks really got into the tree.
He got to put the star on the tree (Did you notice his underwear? More on that later.)
We have a few more parties this weekend before the main event.  Its been a stressful holiday and to be honest I’ll be glad when I can just enjoy my family and not worry about making treats and wrapping and buying presents.  I can now see how easy it is to get so lost in the holiday and forget why we are celebrating.  Below is a picture of a centerpiece I did for our church’s holiday party this past weekend (another stressful planning event – I’m glad I did that though).  After the party, I was so convicted about the way I was treating this holiday.  I look forward to Christmas every year and this year it has seemed overwhelming and not the least bit exciting.  What am I saying to Brooks with all my lists and my negative attitude?  
Every evening we add another character to our nativity calendar and Brooks always wants to add baby Jesus, but I tell him that we have to wait for Jesus’ birthday to put him in the stable. (Warning – I’m about to get sentimental) His excitement about adding the baby to the calendar has got me thinking about my own attitude towards the holiday.  Am I waiting in anticipation for Christ? I’ve decided that I will not let all the buzz around the holiday ruin the holiday and next year maybe I won’t take on so much.

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