Thursday, December 29, 2011

Our 2011 Christmas

Our Christmas celebration this year was considerably different than previous years.   For one thing, we didn't travel to visit family since we need to be ready to go to the hospital for delivery at any time now.  But, Christmas this year was still very special.  It has been SO much fun to experience Christmas through the eyes of a two year old this year.   Two-year olds learn at a rate exponentially greater than us adults do.   So, every day this season, Drew and I were able to experience Luke learning something new and asking many questions.  For example, he LOVES baby Jesus!   In fact, he was all about baby Jesus--he could spot the nativity scenes outside of neighbors houses well before they came into the view of me or Drew.  

Since we were unable to travel to visit family, Drew's parents came up the weekend before Christmas to celebrate with us, and then we were able to use the wonderful technology of Skype to celebrate Christmas with my side of the family and with Drew's sister and her family.  This was definitely a time that my appreciation for technology like Skype grew!  Below is a little picture journal of some of our Christmas celebration this year.

We visited the Domain in Austin with Mimi and Pape to watch their Laser light show.

Luke breaks in his new recliner Mimi and Papa bought for him.

Our Tree..Luke loved this!  He was so excited about it that he showed it to everyone--even strangers who came to our house to buy things from us we had listed on craisglist!

with Mimi and Papa

Drew is uber excited to open a gift for our little girl--a girly paci pod.

As usual, Luke enjoyed riding Papa's "race car" while they visited!
Luke and I found a great Gingerbread kit at Sam's Club one day and just had to buy it.  I told him that since Mimi and Papa were coming to visit, they could probably help us build it.  Luke (Mr. Talkative) was super excited about this and told the cashier all about how we were going to all build it together since they were coming to visit us.  It was adorable!   Luke is really into building things lately--for example, he loves his Legos!  Unfortunately, Mimi and Papa had to head back to their house on Sunday and weren't able to help us build it.  But, we had a lot of fun building it together as a family.  Luke was so proud of it and unfortunately didn't want to ever get rid of it.  So, we had to throw it out when he was napping one day.  :-(
Luke was so proud of our creation!

So proud, in fact, that he decided to eat the gingerbread guy he made for the house.

Luke in front of the tree before one of our Skype Christmas celebrations.

On Christmas eve, it was nice to be able to visit our own church's Christmas eve service.  Usually, we are out of town visiting family and have, thus, never been able to attend our own church's service.  This year, they were actually recording their Live Christmas Worship album, which will be released next Christmas.  Our Church, the Austin Stone Community Church, recently created a website ( and released a live worship CD on itunes.  Their website even shares all of the original music (for guitar, piano, lyrics, etc) for other churches who wish to use the songs in their worship services.   So, it has been neat to be a part of this and to be a part of the Christmas live worship album that will be released next year.

Christmas morning was so special with Luke.   He was extremely excited on Christmas Eve about leaving a cookie and some milk for Santa.  One of the first things he noticed when he came down the stairs on Christmas morning was that Santa ate his cookie and milk.  He said, "Mommy! Daddy! Santa ate cookies---all gone!"  He thought that was the coolest thing!  Of course, then he immediately noticed the "bike" that Santa left for him under the tree.  He has been riding that thing all over the house!

Luke's new "bike".

Loving my new hat from Drew!

Luke was even excited about getting new shoes for Christmas.  He calls them his "cool shoes" and wanted to show both sets of Grandparents via Skype on Christmas morning.

Digging in his stocking!

Of course, the best part of our Christmas celebration had nothing to do with material "things".   One of my facebook friends posted something that I thought was definitely worth sharing here.   It discusses some of our Christmas "traditions" and the Christian symbolism of them.  "Did you know that the chopping down of the Christmas tree represents the death of Christ & putting it back up again represents the resurrection of Christ? Did you know that the wreaths we hang are never ending circles, that represent eternity? Candy canes were made to look like shepherd hooks & the colors red (Jesus' blood) white (purity). The gifts we give, represent the 3 gifts the wise men brought for Jesus [and of course the greatest gift that God could ever give us--the gift of his Son]. So when you are running around trying to get the "perfect gift", stop yourself, take a deep breath & remember we have been given the perfect gift-- Jesus Christ was given to us to remove all of our sins."

Our family is extremely grateful for all of the gifts that God has blessed us with.   But, of course, the greatest gift has been our Salvation. 

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