I had all these awesome ideas for Christmas blog posts-- one for our lovely evening as a little family in a two star hotel outside of Indianapolis; one for Christmas at my parents' house which included meeting little baby Max, the baby of a close childhood friend, and a room full of presents for two beautiful little granddaughters; then one for Christmas at Maic's house on the 26th with all five of his siblings and a ham decorated like a Christmas tree; and finally one for the rest of the week, lunch with a good friend and supporter in my Ordination Process, an open house with friends in which I realized how much being a Mama has changed me, and preaching this Sunday at First Congo after getting home from the trip.
Well friends, those entries aren't going to happen. I am pooped, and seem to have gotten a little bit of a flu. Evelyn has been super demanding lately as she is becoming a real baby and not just a lazy little newborn. And, I realized, maybe you don't want to read four separate blog entries about Christmas.
I thought Christmas would be extra special for me this year, being able to experience Mary's pain-followed-by-joy, but it turned out that I had hardly a second to really reflect on what Christmas means outside of being surrounded by family and loved ones. We missed the Christmas Eve service, as we were travelling, and though we went to the Christmas morning service at my home church, it was overshadowed by how excited I was to see so many people I love at church and spend the afternoon with my family.
So, in all honesty, I felt that I kind of missed the birth of Christ this year. That certainly doesn't mean I won't find it somewhere else, hopefully soon.
I preached on Sunday about the divinity of Christ, relating to the Song of Simeon in Luke 2:22-40. I felt good about the sermon, even though it existed only in outline form until 12:30 a.m. that morning.
It looks like I will be doing my Ordination interview in the middle of March. I'm glad to have a deadline and hope it will give me a little kick to get my paper written. When I met with Fran, an old friend and one of my biggest cheerleaders, and someone who happens to be on the ordination committee, we talked about what churches are open in the Western Reserve Association (Northeast Ohio). I'm feeling really excited about a few options. Of course, I won't know if they'll be interested in me until I get that interview done and my profile put together!
So, in short form, what were those four separate Christmas entries gonna look like?
|We opened presents as a family at a Super 8 Motel. Evelyn got lots of stuff, |
including this vintage Noah's Ark fabric I intend to embroider and use as
a wall hanging someday when she has a nursery.
|Pat and I holding our offspring. Max is 3 weeks old! |
I can't tell you how weird it is for Pat, myself, AND my brother to have
little babies. We used to play street hockey with dead moles in the driveway.
|The Zo-ster, 19 months old, was less impressed with her baby cousin this time. |
She eventually found a photo of Evelyn at Great-Grammas, and decided
she liked the photo better. It didn't cry. So she showered it with toys.
|Evelyn and two of her uncles and Daddy, watching the "Sexy Sax Man" on Youtube.|
|The Christmas Tree ham. Eddie dreamed it up. Rosemary, peppers, |
caramel corn, and pineapple. It was actually quite delicious.
|Evelyn sleeping with Bunster, aka Darla, an invention and Christmas gift |
by her Aunt Charis. How clever is my family???
I mentioned earlier that the Open House we invited our friends to to meet Evelyn and hang out was a very bizarre experience. I really thought I would never change and would always be able to hang out with my friends just like before. I always figured I'd have Evelyn on my hip, but she would love my friends and they would love her. Well, I learned this weekend that 1. Evelyn doesn't like more than 3 or 4 people in one room. She gets really upset and overwhelmed and 2. That no matter how hard I try, I cannot calm a baby and hang out with my friends the same way as always at the same time. It felt so weird. I hope my friends understand. I love them all so much.
Finally, the trip home and a little break really recharged me to work on my ordination paper. I am so excited to move closer to family and really start living my career. At the same time, I am loving where I am in life-- at First Congo, in my tiny apartment with my husband and baby, and studying at Eden. Life is good. God is good.