Last year on Christmas Eve, we went to the "Children and Family Candlelight Service" at our church, and we enjoyed it so much, we said that we'd try to do it every year while the kids are young. This year, GrandDaddy Longhorn was spending the night with us, so he got to go with us. Gage thought it was such a treat!
Before we headed out to church:
Here we all are before the service:
The service is always wonderful. I couldn't help but get all choked up this year with Baby Girl at church with us. A year ago, I was pregnant with her, and had just found out that we'd have a daughter. Two years ago at Christmas, I was an anxious hormonal mess in the throes of fertility treatments and spending what would be our final Christmas with Allen.
Anyhow....it's just.....different. Our lives have changed. Life has changed us.
...every good and wonderful thing, I just want to soak it up like a sponge, and never forget.
So, just being there, at that church service with our perfect little family, it's like I wanted to freeze time when Eliette was rocking out to "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" while standing on Daddy's knees, and Gage was snuggled in the bend of my arm. I can say that I truly appreciated every bit of that moment, and I wanted it to last forever.
Eventually Eliette fell asleep. We listened to the service and watched as the Nativity was acted out by children we know. Having just had a baby myself, I wanted to cry to think of Jesus as a baby, being born in a manger. I wanted to cry for Mary and how scared she must have been, and how just grossly inadequate that seems for our Lord.
It was just a very thought provoking service for me this year in particular.
Like I said, I just wanted to soak it all up with a sponge.
I was acutely aware of how very blessed I am.
* * * * *
After church we headed home and had buffalo stew for dinner. We then went over to James & Jessica's for a quick visit and to give R1 & R2 their gifts. Love these sweet boys!
Jessica and her mom were making cookies, and Jessica gave Eliette her first mixing lesson.
Hubby wanted us all to load up and go look at Christmas lights in the neighborhood. Apparently one neighbor had his/her/their lights set to the tune of "What Does the Fox Say?" Unfortunately at this point in the evening, I was starting to really have a headache creep in.
Eliette didn't last long in looking at the Christmas lights, and with her crying in the car, the flashing holiday lights, and being a passenger in the backseat of my own car---my head was ready to explode!
We got home quickly, and I was able to get in bed. Oh, my sweet husband. Truly, as I post this, I cannot remember if I put Eliette to bed or if he did. I have no recall of tucking in either of my children or getting Gage into his Christmas jammies. What I do remember is my husband finding the super-strength ibuprofen left over from my c-section, and him helping me into bed with my eye mask. I vaguely recall a conversation about gifts, and I was soon asleep.
....for a little while at least.
Labels: church, Eliette, Family, Gage, Holidays