Thank you, 2012!!! You brought us so many amazing and precious moments at Disneyland, in Drumheller and then Calgary, in Quebec, at the campsite, in our home, with our family and with friends! We are blessed beyond measure and so grateful!!!
Tonight we are making our own party... seafood pasta, bbq ribs, sparkling cider (thanks to all who contributed to our celebration meal!), the kids set the table with great-Nana's fancy china, wine glasses, fancily-folded napkins, candles lit...and I fell asleep just as the kids were coming down in button-down shirts and all dressed up. I missed it... to be woken by a kiss as Daddy took the kids out to skate. This is the current reality, being happy when my kids are happy and trying hard not to pout when I miss things. Silver lining...the arena was closed so Daddy phoned, I quick-ate some food and they picked me up for a plan-change and headed to the castle of fun (the local arcade)! Turned out to be a great evening and then we stopped for a New Year's Eve hug at my parents and McFlurry's treats from McDonalds. Nice! Now it's jammies and hoping the littles will fall asleep on the couch as the rest of us stay up (I'm trying hard) to watch the ball drop and do our annual yell-and-scream ringing in the New Year on the front porch!!!
Christmas has been very lovely, I declared it (to myself) a cancer-free week and it was awesome! No calls from the hospital or cancer agency, no appointments, no deep discussions about anything. It was fabulous.
Christmas Eve day... was harsh. Wow. My emotions were in over-drive, I felt so much pressure to keep Christmas cancer-free and just fun and normal... not just for the kids and my family but for ME! What if next year I'm too sick? What if next year I'm still fighting this and ... or... what if?.... it's a lot of work to keep those "what ifs" at bay and Christmas Eve day was the morning the dam was trying hardest to break. I mean, come on, December 24th is already a last-minute-panic day...add this current mess and wowza. Had a good freak-out on the phone (thanks Mom for letting me vent my ugly-Kristin fears and panics) and the day went on.
Christmas Eve... was lovely at Shawn's parents' house. We had a newly engaged couple shining their joy and light on the festivities, we had four super-excited kids, we had two super proud grandparents, and we had my hubby and I just soaking it all in. What a normal and awesome Christmas Eve. Thanks Mom and Dad E for making Christmas magical!!!
Christmas Day Morning... I was the first one up, as is typical around here...I'm such a kid-at-Christmas still! At 7am I got the fire going (yay flip-of-switch) and the tree lit and then just waited... fortunately for only a few more minutes until the little boys came down. What magic to watch the eyes of a child light up at the gifts under the tree, the full stockings, the bite out of a cookie, the emptied glass of milk. Oh but my heart just fills with the memory of that. Next came oldest, then girlie and then Mommy sent kidlets up to get Daddy out of bed! Come on Daddy... it's CHRISTMAS!!!! We had our typical leisurely Christmas morning. This year even youngest got to shop at the Christmas Store at school (gifts for 10cents, everything comes home wrapped by volunteer parents) and Mommy had a good happy-cry when youngest presented his gift to oldest...a special "book about biking" (an autobiography of Lance Armstrong) for his big brother and the family biking-fiend. Each child's gift to his sibling was just absolutely thoughtful and perfect and should a true understanding of what the recipient would really appreciate. Seriously, the only time I cried over Christmas was at the pride this Momma felt at the seeing the gifts given by my kids. Oh my... so proud of the humans I live with.
Christmas Day... lunch at Mom's ... this was the one I was most figuring-I-would-cry at. My Dad has the hugest heart, my Mom has the most generous spirit, my sisters are so hurting over this current situation, my brother-in-laws have just been amazing... seeing my nieces and nephews and seeing a new kind of love in their eyes for me... [melt]... it's a lot for this girl. Christmas Day at my parents was... lovely. Just so nice and so easy and so just lovely. Started to lose it when Dad prayed and started to lose it... but we all regained and the day was ... a normal, lovely Christmas. So grateful. We had fun watching the kids open their gifts, the food was amazing, the adults exchanged stocking gifts (so fun!) and the evening just unfolded lovely-ly.
Boxing Day ... dinner at Auntie and Uncles... normal, nice, traditions, relaxed. Another great Christmas. We are so blessed to have so much family around and gathering together still. I never get tired of it, I could eat turkey ten days in a row, I love the hustle and bustle and the busy. It just shores me up and makes me happy.
Happy New Year to you! Praying peace and love and joy and health and kindness and good things to you and for you and for your dear ones for 2013!!!! Thank you for your continued prayers and support... I think of your prayers in random moments (good or rough) through the days and it just makes me feel so ... hugged... to know you are out there praying and holding us up. Thank you. So much, thank you!!!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!
Sunday sermon from Pastor Chris: