Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Jesus!!

We without a doubt had our best Christmas yet, Sammy just made it so sweet. For those who aren't around him much to say that he is expressive is an understatement. He gets VERY excited about the tiniest of things so he just truly made the season magical. Every "Twistmas Wight" (Christmas light) we passed in the car result in a loud "Happy Burthday Jesus!!!" and a little mini party right there in the backseat. He was just so sweet and had so many questions about Christmas. They were not very profound, mosty related to whether Jesus gets special pancakes to eat and always double checking if Jesus is happy when we are kind (been working alot on kindness), but I am just thankful he wants to know about Jesus so early. Sammy really enjoyed the Christmas program at our church and I did my best to explain what was happening as each event transpired. I thought he would get distracted by the camels and a donkey, etc but nope he was still focused on baby Jesus, just not in the way I had hoped. He was very worried about baby Jesus being cold and not being careful on the donkey and then of course Mary, Joseph, & baby Jesus were on this high part of the stage and so Sammy yelled out "careful baby Jesus.....tall!! Obey mommy!!" yea, that was fun. He also belted out a happy birthday Jesus song when all was dark and quiet in between songs. In fact, his obsession with baby Jesus almost resulted in the demise of my mom's Jesus from her manger scene. Sammy had been playing and mom said he came to her and mentioned something about Jesus and a bath and a few moments later she decided to check in on him only to find him standing at the bathtub with her porcelain baby Jesus about to be dropped into the bath tub b/c "him diaper dirty, need clean bath"... oopsy. Thankfully Mom saved the day and all is well and we made sure Jesus stayed safely in Mary's lap the rest of our trip. SORRY MOM!!

I had a really hard time falling asleep on Christmas Eve. It was strange b/c I had such eager anticipation of the morning and it reminded me of how I felt as a child only my anticipation was for Sammy's experience if that makes any sense. It is surreal being on this end of it, on the parent side and experiencing all the wonder of Christmas through your child's eyes. It is so important to Sam and I that he "gets it" and one day fully grasps the true importance of the day and comes to cherish it for Jesus more so than the presents and hooplah associated with it. Yes I am aware that nobody knows the true date of Jesus' birth, I've heard some speculate October and others January but the actual date is not important. Those debates only serve to distract us from what it is really all about. We are not commanded to celebrate His birth and we can obviously celebrate it on any day we choose. As believers we are not celebrating a day, we are celebrating God's AMAZING love for us. His love for us is more than we can even comprehend really. Our God loved us so lavishly that he literally came down here to earth to US to live with us and teach us and ultimately save us and offer eternal life. Um can you say WOW? Although he was human he never stopped being God yet he came to us as a helpless and totally dependent baby in a lowly manger. ..again.. wow! I am just so overwhelmed with thankfulness and joy and so many different emotions when I think of that night and how each involved must have felt. Each year Christmas becomes even more meaningful to me personally as I grow closer to my Jesus. My hope and prayer is that one day it will be the same for Sammy. I want him to understand that in the Bible God does not require nor forbid the celebration of Jesus but rather we CHOOSE to show our devotion to Him by celebrating with our family and although we hope to celebrate Him all year, it is nice to have a time when EVERYONE around joins in together.

The pics I included tonight are from our "Birthday Party for Jesus" we had with the Flores kids. This is a tradition we do with Hannah each year and thought it would be fun to include her siblings as well and thankfully it was just wonderful! We went to the gym at church and played basketball for a while then came home and baked the birthday cake and made some gifts for their family members then decorated the cake. I was SUPER excited that we found the original cake topper for Jesus's birthday cake from when I was a little girl and of course the kids LOVED that it was something from my childhood. It was important to me that we read the Christmas story and talk about how it really relates to our lives now but I also wanted it to be something that my little Sammy could understand and participate in too. The big kids were great sports and agreed to read from his toddler Bible. Each kid read a few pages (even Sammy!) and then we had the sweetest prayer, their prayers were so genuine and sweet that tears filled my eyes. I found myself begging and pleading with Jesus to please answer their cries to Him. After the prayer we lit the cake up with MANY candles and sang the bday song then PAR-TAY'd!!! Fun fun fun!! We turned the Christmas music up and danced the night away when the sugar highs set in and I half expected my neighbors to call the cops, ha ha.

We had a great night... I LOVE THESE KIDS!!

Hannah, Mark, Samantha, & Krista
Making their presents for their fam

Sammy worked super hard on his Noel sign
Everyone had a turn decorating the cake.. It originally said Happy Birthday Jesus but then there was a red sprinkle mishap and a GINORMOUS meltdown on the part of my little Banana SO.. they all wrote it a second time on TOP of the already existing sprinkles and lets just say it was rather intense to eat. I could hardly taste the chocolate b/c of all the sprinkles and icing!

Mark was so patient and taught Sammy how to do the sprinkles, unfortunately he then taught him how to EAT them too..

Everyone had a turn reading and I was VERY PROUD of how well Hannah is doing with her reading, she has come SO FAR this year. I had to put a video of her up so you can all see how well she can read now!!!

Happy Birthday Jesus!!!

I uploaded videos too, most are short but I will warn you that you may want to cut off the craft time video when Krista starts singing it gets a little long and she got carried away and basically I have no clue how to edit them to make it shorter, ha ha. Also, remember if you an email notification that I posted this you can see the pic of the video but you have to click onto the actual blog to watch the videos.

Blowing out candles! Happy Bday to my King!!! ** Mark WAS ok at the end, it was all for dramatic effect. The smoke blew close to his eyes but it was nothing bad

Interview with kids during craft time

Sammy reading Christmas Story

Hannah Reading her part of the Christmas story