December 26th

December 26th is a day rest after the weeks of excitement, anticipation, and celebrating. We enjoy watching Shelton and Bailey play with their new toys while cooking a pot of white bean chili. It’s actually the first day in weeks with nothing on our schedule. Even as hard as I try not to over book, stress, and over schedule I fall victim to thinking we can add one more thing… Recently someone asked how “we do Christmas”. I laughed and said as simply as possible. We focus on the season not just a day and think of others like Jesus did. I start early, go slow, try not to rush and remember “I get to celebrate” rather than I have to decorate or bake. I get to decorate my home and I get to attempt an edible gingerbread that is gluten free, dairy free, soy free, and nut free with my daughter.

We love the scratch off advent calendar with bible verses before school and Jesse tree reading with ornament before bed.

On Sunday’s we lite our advent wreath. We sing Christmas carols (even more now that Shelton plays them on the piano) bake Christmas cookies, and watch Christmas movies. Homemade gifts, ornaments, and Christmas crafts are fun and treasures to keep forever. I always date them so we can look back and say remember when we made this….I love pulling out my childhood ornaments and sharing who gave it to me and what year is on each of them.

We love to shop for our angel tree children and picking out toys for the toys for tots program. Now that we have a puppy Shelton added taking toys to the shelter to our list. This year her class also collected books and toys for kids in the hospital. I love that kids can learn at an early age the spirit of giving.

Holly the elf comes at some point in December usually depending on when Shelton’s room is clean. Holly hides each night and Shelton loves finding her each morning.

Christmas Eve we have brunch and church. Before bed we leave Holly by the tree and put homemade sugar cookies and egg nog for Santa.

Christmas morning we see what Santa left (unwrapped) and open gifts under the tree. Santa brings three gifts because baby Jesus got three gifts. Santa fills our stocking with fresh fruit, candy, socks, small treats. Around all of our Christmas traditions we are in the kitchen cooking and baking Christmas favorites. Scott loves to make candy with his mother while I focus on the gluten free baked goods. Christmas dinner is beef, chicken, sweet potatoes, scolloped potatoes, lima beans, carrots, rolls, and more desserts than you can imagine.

And now back to the second day of Christmas December 26th. No I am not cleaning house or taking down my tree. In fact, I leave my tree up until epiphany (January 6, 2019) otherwise know as Three Kings Days celebrating the day the wiseman found baby Jesus.

There were several wise men that had been sent by King Herod to find the newborn baby Jesus.

The wise men “Who having heard the king, went their way; and behold the star which they had seen in the east, went before them until it came and stood over where the child was. And seeing the star they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And entering into the house, they found the child with Mary his mother, and falling down they adored him; and opening their treasures, they offered him gifts; gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” (Matthew 2:9-11)

Merry Christmas 🎄 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13

💗,

Julie

one of my favorite pictures of Christmas 2018.

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