Belated Christmas post

So I worked up this post around Christmas time and it never went anywhere. Did I just not hit publish? Who knows? I never claimed this was a professional, timely, organized blog. Love you guys & hope your Christmas was fabulous.

My favorite Christmas song. I have desperately tried to capture Breath of Heaven in this season. God brought Christmas into focus for our family last year. We had 2 Chinese students stay with us for most of the Christmas holiday-about 2 weeks. They didn't know Jesus and His birth story. I still can't believe God let us host them, let me try to introduce them to Jesus. Talk about humbling. We are still in contact with them. Jesus is still chasing them. I know He is.

So it is hard to top last Christmas, it was hectic and we were stretched-but it was Christ-filled. We are trying! So trying.
 Tim & 2 other wise men in our church's live nativity.
And I was sad when Tim shaved his beard.
 Here be Mary & Joseph! They were precious and did a great job. The most humble couple I know.

How do you get a child who is obsessed with picking his nose to stop picking his nose. He. Never. Stops.
This crazy-hair angel is the fav among the kid made ornaments. I'd like to think there are angels like this-wild hair, not perfect, still usable.
Max's concoction. He poured half a bag of sugar on his "cereal", which was red/green goldfish. I was kinda proud he did all this by himself. Not sure where I was when this took place. Most mischief takes place when I'm in the tub.

We got to the beach this year for the Largen Christmas. What a treat and a gift-just to slow down and keep the pace of beach life.

Help me Rhonda...while we were in the condo-Max & I discovered a rerun of HEHAW. I was dying. We used to watch this every week and I really haven't seen it since I was a child. Does it not seem like everyone had to have been intoxicated while filming? I remember rolling laughing at this as a child. Good stuff.

Our SS Class Christmas party is da best. Dirty Santa. This group is close to my heart. Some of our most authentic friendships have grown out of this group. While the church today does not look/is not perfect, I love this class that represents the body of Christ to me. We cook for each other when babies come, laugh together & pray together. Our class discussion goes all over the place, sometime we are not completely holy-but I like it, because it is real.
We had the chance to be part of a store for an inner city group who live in a particular apartment complex. The single mamas could come in and purchase donated toys for a very discounted amount. They were able to pick out what they thought their kids would like and be able to pay for it. One mama started crying when she walked in seeing the selection-she had 6 kids and worked full time at Target. We partnered with a church already invested in this community. To be able to stand in a circle, holding hands, praying over this event and these families/mamas/kids, it was a taste of heaven to me. No barriers/no agenda/no color-just working together to spread love. (This is Ruthie and one of the volunteer's kiddos testing the merch).

Just like other mamas, the elf is no longer cute. I really was so grumpy about getting him out. But I read an article about the Elf with a purpose/or Elf on the Shelf-Jesus style. This clicked with me and I got all about the elf again. So we had a letter the elf gave the kids on the first night that explained the gig & then had daily cards with different "assignments". My favorite was having the kids take laundry detergent packs/$5 in quarters/dryer sheets to friends doing laundry at the laundry mat. Okay, so it takes about $10 to was and dry a load of laundry at the laundry mat. I did not know this before I went in there and asked. My word. I cannot imagine. So the kids and I were a little apprehensive walking in, but my prayer was that they would see it as a blessing from God and not a blessing from our hands. And it was the coolest. One stop, I sent the big kids in to hand them out (sometimes I think kids can handle things better than adults). It was cool to watch through the window. They got hugs & Henry got to give his to a soldier who was in there. 

This is where I got my letter (from the smart mama at Crayon Marks & Tiger Stripes). And below are the cards I used. I got them from here (Kimberly Danger/Mommy Savers) & then modified some of the "assignments" and made my own cards. I got some more good ideas here.

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