Thursday, December 31, 2015

"The Reality of the Christmas & Holiday Cards"

This is my last post of the year… The month of DECEMBER has FLOWN by!  When I  reflect on all that we did… it looks like we were BUSY!  I guess we were… I guess that is just December.  It was fun!  Now it is almost over and a New Year will to be had… 
I love December because there are so many h-a-p-p-y things going on… 
the music, the lights, the parties, the church services, the wonder of Santa, the elf on the shelf craze, the shopping, the decorating, the baking, baby Jesus, the Giving… the Joy… the Cheer…
What about Christmas CARDS
Don't you know you love getting all the mail? I am a fan of Christmas cards.  I love looking at all the pictures of friends/family, near/far, some you use to know and some you can't imagine life without now.  They all make me happy and bring me cheer.  I have always loved to send cards and nowadays  having a picture on the front makes them even better!  Thank you for your cards of cheer!  :)

You ever wonder what's REALLY behind those Christmas Card Pictures?  Like if pictures could talk…. Would they say Merry Christmas… Life is Perfect?  Maybe… for that year? 
Or maybe they wouldn't say anything at all because they wouldn't even make a card, they don't see the point in spending money on cards or maybe "come hell or high water" they would get those cards out, but if truth be told…. their card really says…

 "we are barely hanging on" or  "there is someone missing on our card this year because they passed away" or "this might be our last Christmas pic with us all before we lose our loved one fighting cancer" or "just the kids this year b/c the parents are getting a divorce" or "I know we are picture perfect, but it's not real" or "my family drives me crazy!"  LOL!
WHAT would cards really say if they could talk?  

I got to thinking about this because I laugh at our picture at how "perfect" it looks…. well you know I think that…because it's My family.  :)  I love them so!   But only I know the "reality" behind that one picture.  
I wanted us all on the bed that Nathan built for me & him.  It was our anniversary gift this year to get new mattresses and so we decided to upgrade and get King size! Never had a big bed!  I have loved this Pottery Barn Farmhouse style bed that has DIY plans on Pinterest….
 So yes… He built us our Forever Bed.  We stained it together & it has been so incredibly special to redo our room &  make it "Us".
So on the Christmas Card it was going to go!  :) 

It was time to take our pic before 14 out of town guests came for Thanksgiving.  Everything in the house was breaking…. but the morning of our "at home photo session"… our water heater leaked all in our garage and hubby had to put a new one in.  So while he was  doing that… I was curling hair and getting clothes ready.  3 of the 4 kids cried or acted upset… complained about getting a picture had too tight pjs… one had pj's that were too big….they were itchy and hot…so,  WE left ALL the tags on and YES… I took them back to Target after our pic!
  Yes I know.. I am a horrible person. 
 Hubby walks in all sweaty from installing the new water heater and I say to him… 
"You want to put this SWEATER on?" 
Moments before he was arms wrapped around a water heater and sediment water dripping down onto his face… He smiles and puts on the sweater and we take a few pics.  

I look at this photo and will always remember all that went into it to make it "picture perfect"…. It wasn't a Perfect Session with Perfect People with Perfect Clothes with Perfect Smiles and Perfect Attitudes.  I don't think anyone else's cards are either.  

I think it is a "perfect SNAPshot" of a MOMENT of POSE…. I also think about the reason we send these cards…It is to spread Christmas Cheer because of the PERFECT CHILD who was born on Christmas Day.  I think if this Perfect Child lives in your heart, your faces will Shine even through the Hard times, the Imperfect moments, the Reality of Life… It will Shine even with Struggles because in the end YOU KNOW…. He lives in your Heart and Nothing on this earth can take that away. 
I think about people I know, families struggling… I look at their cards and think of what they have been through this past year or are going through and how even during the holidays, they spread their Christmas Cheer and send a card.  It's comforting to know one day… we won't need to fix our hair, put on our best clothes, coax everyone into smiling at the same time for a quick portrait… WE will all be happily singing & dancing with perfect health and all of our heavenly family surrounding us.  It will be an Eternal Merry Christmas Snapshot!  :)

 Our Christmas Card Picture… 2015

This picture was on the back of our card….
 I love my family… but this is where it all began.  
Me & My Love
I chose this because not only did Nathan build us this amazing bed, but also the sign above it.  He ripped up our stair treads and redid the stairs. (Another pinterest project… LOL) So this is the old wood cut to be imperfect and painted by  him the same verse he wrote on our chalkboard for my birthday last year.  It was so special to me that he did that.  I decided that was what he needed to paint for above our bed.  These would have sold on Etsy for $100+…. but my little artistic hubby hand painted this and I LOVE it!!!!

Here are a few pics of our December Festivities

 Movie Night… Pjs and Christmas lights

 Can they stay little forever?

 waiting to see Santa!  

 Any chance for a pretty picture…you better believe this mama is gonna go for it!  

 Sometimes they give me silly and we all laugh till we cry when we look back at all the different faces! How could I ever be bored?  

 Love you my little Christmas Angels

 The days are flying by… He's sees you when you are making these crazy faces when mama is trying to take your picture!!  :)

 Little girls with pig tails and snow globes need to help Santa!  

 Or maybe just stay home and keep wearing cute outfits!  We love this one MeeMaw!

 Ready to sing loud at her Christmas Program

 Making gingerbread houses in kindergarten

 Christmas Parties with my elementary kiddos!

 I need some magic heels to click and allow me to go from classroom to classroom to enjoy all their parties! 

 My Big 5th grader!  
 Painting birthday party with friends… A cute snowman!

A fun night of "Ding Dong Ditchin"…. in a nice way…. my kids would say!  :)  They LOVED this and it was fun to spread Christmas Cheer!  

 Gym Besties have too much fun!  Love them all dearly!  You never, ever leave a restaurant unless you Shut. It. Down!  

 Oh what would my wondering eye would  appear…but a GIANT Bus to take us near….
 for Christmas Cheer….  Progressive Dinner with the Colleyville Gang!

 First stop appetizers and a birthday glass for me  :)

 Cuddle up in the kitchen for a pic 

 Love these ladies
 Next stop… sit down dinner…. 
 The most magical table that put tears in my eyes… Sometimes it's not so bad being a December Birthday….. :)  It is incredibley special!

 My favorite time of the whole night!  

Last Stop: Hot Chocolate and Desserts
Christmas Movie for the kiddos!

 I will forever love this picture of happy times!  You never plan these things… they just happen.  

Mrs. Claus is ready to sit with Santa by the fire….

Just another December Night of Happiness and Christmas tree lights!  

 This… is the cutest Christmas Picture I believe I have ever seen! My precious nephew has milk and cookies and will melt your heart with his cute little face!

 This is better than milk & cookies… It's the whole package!

 This can't be wrapped and put under the tree…. They flew all the way from TENNESSEE!!!!

 Christmas Eve Service at church… a picture with the reindeer!

 MeeMaw too!  The boys were throwing Snowballs…. 

 Merry Christmas Morning 2015…. No tinsel… No tangle… Just happy faces to dangle!

 Happy Jensie in a tent with her new doll!

 A baby from MeeMaw

 "What Mom?  A video game that is called "Chores"… ????  Confused…. 
 This is his "acting like he likes it face"

 You Got PRANKED!!!!  The real gift was inside and was a tiny iPod to listen to music.

 No Hover boards here…. we gotta MOVE them legs!  Zike bikes!  The funnest scooter ever!  What a great workout!  I want one!  LOL

 What's this my dear?  A "Deer"… by the Christmas tree?  

 Sweet Cullen taking it all in on Christmas Morning… What a treat to have them here with us!

 Just when you think it's all perfect and the coffee is good and the breakfast is cooking and everyone is happy…. your 11 year old is excited to give you HIS gift. Homemade with Love…. an old piece of wood with 78 nails in it and he painted the ends blue… they spell "MOM" ….. The "O" is a of the sweetest gifts I have ever received.  It took him 3 days.  He did a letter a day…. But there isn't a number of days that this gift won't be in my heart.  Always will remember this and cherish it.

 Christmas dinner… So special to have them all in our home for a Texas Christmas!  God is Good!  

 Tuckered out and fell asleep in our bed…

 A night out to one of my sisters favorite restaurants… La Hacienda Ranch

Our last night… sniff sniff.  Sissy time and Mambo Taxi's from another one of our favorite places to go when she is here.

Out on the town with no kiddos???

 Time to have fun!

 MeeMaw has all our kids!  We look confident?  Yes!  Fun times!

 Sometimes you have to leave the kiddos at home and remember what it's like to "be Us" and have fun and make memories and dream about when we will get to do it again!!!  I love my sissy and am so very thankful she came to Texas for Christmas!

Sunny Side Up!

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