Wednesday, December 25, 2013

New Tradition

I think we have started a new tradition in our family for Christmas day. A teacher at my kids school organizes a day for some recruits from a near by military base. His son was a solider and was killed in Afghanistan about 3 years ago, leaving behind a wife and daughter. Last year was the first year he had the event. We didn't know about it until afterward. This year we decided that we would spend our Christmas there serving them. It was the BEST thing our family could ever have done. It was an amazing day. We got there early and started working in the kitchen making the food. Then when we got word they were almost here we all lined the halls of the school to welcome them. There was a ton of people there, my guess is about 300, could of been more?! As they walked down the hall people clapped and told them Merry Christmas! Several of them were so moved they were crying. They had some food and then were able to talk on the phone or skype with their families. People let them use their cell phones...Jeff came home with several different locations called from his phone! There was also an arcade area for them to relax and play. It was so neat to see my kids serving along side of us. And they really did work. On our way home we heard, "That was so fun!" "Can we do that again?" Here is the best part, in my opinion. When we got up this morning we only opened our stockings. All the presents stayed under the tree until we got home AFTER serving. It was a very great Christmas.    

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

For my own record...

Sweetest Conversation with Peanut to date...
We were driving in the car just her and I a couple of Saturdays ago. She told me, "In Bible class my teacher, Mrs. D. told me that in Papua New Guinea the people celebrate Christmas without having a Christmas tree. Did you know you could celebrate Christmas without a tree?" Me, "Yes, did you know that you can still celebrate Christmas without a tree and presents?" She thinks for a second and says, "Yes". Then I asked her, "How are some ways we can celebrate Christmas if we don't have a tree or presents?" She thought for a moment and said excitedly, "We could sing praise songs to Jesus!" Me, "Yup that would be a great way to celebrate Christmas. Can you think of any other way we could celebrate?" Peanut, "Um we could read the Bible." Me, "Yes, what story in the Bible could we read?" She says, "Adam and Eve!" I told her, "We could read that but can you think of another story we could read to help us celebrate Christmas?" She got really excited and said, "We could read about Jesus' birth!" I told her, "That is right. That would be the perfect story. Can you think of any other way to celebrate?" She thought for a few minutes and finally said, "Yeah we could tell God all the things we are thankful for!" Then she started listing them. I told her she was right and asked her again if she could think of any other way to celebrate. When she couldn't think of anything else I told her that the three she had thought of were great ways to celebrate Christmas. I just love that at the age of 6 years old she can understand why we celebrate Christmas, that it isn't about the tree or presents. I love this girl with all my heart and I love her heart too!