• Christmas •

I have to say, as I think I mentioned in a previous post, this holiday season didn't really go as planned.

We had sick kids.  A sick mommy. and that spanned the three weeks following up to Christmas.  I was so bummed to not be able to make cookies and treats for our wonderful new neighbors (because we didn't want to share the nasty sick germs), we had to cancel my birthday plans because on my actual birthday the girls and I were all sick.  And really, the list goes on!

I had a social media friend post something along the same lines.  How her heart was so heavy going in to the holiday season for many different reasons.

God then laid this on my heart for her, and although God gave me this word for her, it was also EXACTLY what my heart needed reminded of as well....

" I was reminded recently, when I was feeling the same way for different reasons... as this holiday season has NOT gone as I had planned, since between myself and my girls we have been sick for three weeks... which means no cooking goodies for the neighbors, no walks to see the lights, etc... just all those little "traditions" I was hoping to facilitate that fizzled. Anyway, I was reminded that the night of Christ's birth didn't necessarily go as planned, I'm sure, for Joseph and Mary. But it was EXACTLY as God had planned. God has us right where we need to be, in this moment. He holds it all together! Merry Christmas Sweet friend!!!! Love on those sweet kiddos and just breathe in this season (unless you are like me and can't really breathe, ha!... then figuratively, ha!)."

And can I just say.  What an awesome Christmas we had.  God definitely had my heart EXACTLY where it needed to be.  Right with my sweet girls and my amazing husband.  We had a holiday full of wonderful family memories.  I sat my phone down and just breathed it all in.  In fact... I didn't even get any pictures of the girls opening presents this year!!! Thankfully, my in laws came over to watch the girls open their presents and my mother in law took pictures and videos!

Christmas Eve started out with me grabbing Hayden and running in to the church for about a half hour to finish a few things up for the Christmas Eve service that afternoon.  I got back home, and we just relaxed...  took naps and then got our "pretty dresses" on for the Christmas Eve service.  I LOVE the service at our church.  It is always so magical!  The girls both stayed with us during the service, instead of going to the nursery.  Harper was SO excited!  She danced and clapped to the music.  And then fell asleep in Rob's lap during the first musical special. ha!  Hayden LOVES to sing (yell along with music) so she enjoyed the service so much as well!  After church, we ran back home and started dinner.. Tamales of course! And Jack and Kathy (my mother in law and father in law) came over for dinner.  Christmas Eve night, the girls got to open their "surprise", aka.. Christmas PJ's.  Harper also got to open a new book... a huge book of Disney Princess stories!  She was SO excited!!

Christmas morning we woke up super early and opened our stockings in our room (a new tradition since our fireplace is in our bedroom), and then FaceTimed my parents as we opened their presents to us and they opened their presents from us.  We then proceeded to go downstairs, where the girls (mainly Harper) saw Harper's little people princess castle and princesses and Hayden's sweet little vanity mirror sorting toy in front of the tree unwrapped.  Harper was SOO excited and exclaimed... "HOW DID THIS GET HERE!!!????"
We fixed breakfast, ate together as our little family of 4, sang happy birthday to Jesus and blew out candles, and then my in laws came over and watched the girls unwrap their presents from us.  It was just a wonderful morning!!!

We then cleaned up, took naps, and got ready for Christmas Dinner at my inlaws for the Tisthammer family Christmas!  Which was equal parts chaos and wonderfulness!  ha!  Just amazing!  Just like Christmas should be! ♥

The day after Christmas, my husband woke up to me sorting through old toys and making piles and getting rid of the clutter!  Our Christmas decor soon followed.  Our house is now back to "normal"... and I gotta say, I love it!

Until I have time to upload some pictures from Christmas... here is the link to our facebook album (sorry, I think you have to have a fb account to view them all...)

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