Wow, this is shamefully late, but without apologizing I'm at least going to archive Christmas 2011 :)
After Christmas 2010, we decided that we would like to be "less busy" for the Christmas season and spend lots of time being intentional to have fun as a family. At Christmas 2010, we had no idea that Chris would be the Family Pastor at our church and that our lives in general would be much more busy than they had been the years previous. So, with all that being taken into consideration, here are the pictures of some of the Christmas fun we had!
Looking at the Christmas lights in downtown Mooresville. These pictures are divided up between the top and the bottom but that's Ok. You can still see that the kids liked looking at the lights. It is a fairly impressive lights/music presentation for being in Mooresville.....
This was the foster family Christmas party. We don't have any foster kids right now but we went anyway. Actually, me (ashleigh) and the kids went. Chris was teaching this night. The dinner was good - at least to Creed - and then they did a 2 man show of Charles Dickens A Christmas Story. I was surprised at how much Cadence liked it! I had to take the boys to the back and let them run because they definitely weren't into the play, but Cadence watched the whole thing!
Chris and I took Cadence to the Symphony! She's growing up to be such a big girl and we often miss out on it because she's helpful and the boys tend to need way more attention than she does. So, we wanted to be purposeful about taking her to celebrate Christmas in ways that the boys couldn't participate in. And this was one of them! I'm so glad we went. We went to lunch and she was so excited that we got to eat inside, and do all the puzzles in her menu, and we didn't have to rush so that the boys didn't go crazy! She had so much fun and it was confirmed to us that she is growing up- whether we like it or not....
The symphony did a Magic of Christmas show with a sacred half and a secular half. It was so good! complete with sing alongs in both halves :) But Cadence mostly enjoyed sitting on her Daddy's lap for the concert and playing in the doors that go around and around.
Cadence wanted a Christmas tree in her room so we put hers up and she got to decorate it - with a little help :)
Our youth group sponsored a Drop-n-Shop for the families in our church. Cadence, Creed and I went because Chris and Caleb spent this night in the ER with his stomach issues :( We had a great time tho, and Cadence LOVED the puppet show that our youth kids wrote, created, and performed!
One Thursday in December, we made the trek to Raleigh/Wake Forest to hang out with the Lourceys. It was also Aunt Melissa's Christmas play which happened to be "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" and she was Imogene Herdman! So, there was no way we could miss that :) Cadence and I read the book together since we were seeing the play. My hope was to read it before we saw the play so she would know better what was going on, but it didn't work out that way :( and so we only read the first chapter before we saw the play and then finished the book afterwards. We took absolutely NO pictures of us at the play - but that's OK. We remember that it was good :)
We do have pictures (and video) of the kids eating Cookies before the play. Chris stayed with the babies so that Emily and I could just take Jane and Cadence to see the play .
The next day, we met up with KayKay at the mall to hang out. We played, rode the train, and ate - all bonuses to getting to spend time with KayKay!
My friend Hannah and I took Cadence to see a singing Christmas Tree! Hannah had never been to one and wanted an excuse to go :) so Cadence and I gladly obliged her :)
Cadence got to experience making real Gingerbread Houses from scratch with the youth kids! They were making them to give to shut-ins and Cadence helped them out.
and the last of the picture from the begining of this post! Watching the lights downtown - well most of us did.....Caleb was way more interested in the iPod than the lights....
We also did a Jesse Tree this year as a family. It was really fun for the kids to get to put the ornaments on every day and a great thing, as a family, to do to help us be prepared for properly celebrating- not all the busy-ness that is crammed into the 30 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas- but the fact that we have this life at all because Jesus chose to take on flesh so that we could survive the craziness. Without Him coming to be our Savior, none of the celebrating would be worth anything. We are so grateful for God becoming flesh and our prayer is that as our children grow, they would not lose the hope of the Gospel in the middle of the chaos of life.