Christmas Memories from 2012

Winding down after a couple crazy days of Christmas celebrations.  Sunday night at the neighbors, yesterday at my in-laws house, and today we hosted my family here in Northfield.  The following are a some memories I don't want to forget.

- So full from the food!  Meatballs, shrimp, taco dip, authentic Italian spaghetti, jalapeƱo poppers, stuffed mushrooms, cheese and summer sausage, cookies, monkey bread, and mini hotdogs!
- Finding Andrew's DSi3D under the front seat of the van.  It had been missing for 3 weeks!
- Going sledding at St. Olaf and watching my brother-in-law from Guatemala sled for the first time.
- Taking the kids ice skating at the neighborhood rink.
- Playing Farkle with the neighbors.
- Playing the card game Wizard with my family.
- Watching The Inn Keeper with the kids before opening gifts.
- Andrew asking to say the Lord's Prayer before lunch today.
- Seeing the shock and delight in Stephanie's eyes when she opened "Santa's" gift today.
- Watching the kids play with their cousins.
- Presents, presents, presents!
  • Jacob: a Wii and some games, Notre Dame over-sized slippers, Drew Brees jersey, a few stuffed animals and Legos, Northfield stocking hat
  • Izzy: lots of owl stuff, some cute clothes, an Amazon Kindle, iPod Nano, a necklace, an easel and some art supplies
  • Andrew: baseball glove, Legos, Eli Manning jersey, stuffed animal, a police truck and a Dream Light, DSi3D stuff
  • Stephanie: IPad!!!! Coach purse, gift cards, spa certificate.
  • Brenton: a drill, a Keurig machine, Notre Dame t-shirts/coffee mug/stocking hat, coffee gift cards
Christmas seems to be getting more and more enjoyable each year.  The kids are more grateful, more self-entertained and more patient.  The adults enjoy talking, playing games and spending time together.  The focus has shifted and it seems like there is more and more gifts each year, because we delight so much in one another's happiness.

I have so much to be thankful for.  God has blessed our family in a multitude of ways, and the greatest of those blessings is the giving of his Son Jesus to take my place of punishment so that I could be restored back to God.

Merry Christmas!