It seems every Christmas someone gets The Winning Gift, which is something that the gift giver has either put a lot of time, thought or money into. This is the gift you remember the year by. For example, over lunch yesterday we recalled the year Papaw gave Memaw a diamond bracelet he'd attached to a vacuum cleaner. We'd all thought it was strange that he'd given his beloved a vacuum - so unlike him! And then we saw the bling. One year my mom gave me a huge tub of my old baby clothes, which reduced me to tears. This year Curtis and I agreed that we would be very low-key in our gifts to each other. He asked for some tools and a record, which I delivered. I asked for nothing because I have been funky as of late. And wouldn't you know...the winning gift came to me! I, dear reader, am typing on said gift. My new MacBook came with a letter from my husband encouraging me to keep writing - that he had missed my words and was glad to be reading them again. That Curtis Jones is a good man.
I've never blogged very much about Christmas because we're immediately on the road and by the time we get home I'm sort of over it. This year we're home and here I am, typing in my bed while Annabeth sings on her new Sofia the First microphone, Jackson watches TV, and Curtis makes a hospital visit.
The days leading up to Christmas were memorable. Annabeth and I joined some friends and their girls for The Nutcracker Ballet at The Wortham. I had not seen this in many, many years and it was beautiful. They had a gingerbread house and a giant tree in the lobby to take pictures with.
Afterward we went to Lakewood Church to hear our friend Christine Caine preach at the Saturday night service. It was an awesome day from beginning to end. Here is my mom covered in kiddos, which is her favorite thing.
The night before Christmas Eve, we took our Australian friends to see Santa's Wonderland. The hayride ends with these scenes.
This picture shows you how COLD it was.
On Christmas Eve we joined our dear friends, the Merrells, for the Second Annual Reindeer Games. The games involved eggs, shaving cream, flour, and water. In Texas you can get away with such messy outdoor shenanigans in December. Barely. The big kids made this event very, very fun for the little kids.
I took great joy in Jackson and Annabeth's matching PJ's before they went to bed.
We got up at 7 AM and read the Christmas story and opened our presents. I made pancakes to hold us over for our late lunch with my parents.
Their spots were marked by their mini Christmas trees.
We gave Beckham this chew and he immediately started whining and pacing back and forth. He was desperate to take it outside. Bless his heart.
This is THE funnest kid to give anything to. His joy is amazing.
Sis had a lot of flair all day.
We enjoyed our second Christmas at my parents' new house. I wonder how long I will call it the new house? My mom made a fantastic lunch and we had a great time with my sister and our grandparents.
Here's my honey getting some new contraption for the garage. He is my Christmas Hero. I did not feel up to a lot of shopping this year and he joyfully faced the hordes to make everything normal and great for our family.
I thought a lot about the little baby who I hoped would be with us on Christmas Day. I've never had a newborn at Christmas and thought it would be very special. It was hard not to have him here. I have no idea who he lives with now or how he spent his day. I dreamed about him and his sweet mom last night. They are never far from my thoughts.
I hope you and your people had a very Merry Christmas. Now, onto the New Year.