Saturday, December 4, 2010

It's officially Christmas time

I love, love, LOVE this time of year! We decorated our tree last week and Jackson has worked on un-decorating it ever since. We've danced around the house to fun Christmas music. I've gotten the chance to pick up a few presents, but have really enjoyed just focusing more meaningful aspects of the holiday!

This morning at our church, the women's ministry put together a Christmas Around the World brunch and it was fabulous. Two full-time missionaries came to speak about their life, the ministry opportunities they have, and how Christmas is celebrated where they serve. One serves as a Bible translator in Tanzania (I am still currently in awe about the work that goes into that process!) and the other was my cousin, Andrea who serves with the IMB in Prague, Czech Republic. They have been back in the states since the summer and it's been nice to visit and hang out with them at family functions, but it was really neat to hear Andrea speak specifically about their role as missionaries.

I spoke for a quick minute about shopping for Fair Trade products this Christmas. Not only will you be purchasing a nice gift for someone, you will be purchasing a product that allows a woman to live a free life and to not become a victim of sex trafficking. Really, you should check out this site for some great gift ideas: purses, jewelry, home decor.

Julie even sang Silent Night in Danish for the entire group! How awesome is she?! 

Jackson is a wonderful (most of the time) age. He picks up new things everyday and continually surprises me with his ability to learn. He loves Christmas lights, "Chrisy lights!!! Petty!" and he can sing along to Jingle Bells and The Little Drummer Boy. I've spent a good part of the week trying to figure out the best ways to teach him about the real meaning of Christmas and decided that a toy nativity scene would be crucial. Those suckers are expensive, so I made sure to browse Craigslist and found a set brand new set just waiting for us.

We got it out to play today. He can point out Mary ("Ma-mi"), Joseph ("Joset" aka "the Daddy"), and baby Jesus ("ssshhh, ni-nite"), all of the animals, and the angel too. It is so sweet. Even when he puts the donkey on top of the stable leaving the angel to eat from the troughs, I just love knowing that he's learning about the story of Jesus and he is capable of understand it all. I am hoping to get to the library to pick up some good books and will be sure to print off some coloring sheets and stuff to use over the next couple weeks.

I've decided that there is something about having a kid that really brings out the urge to focus more on the real meaning of Christmas. And it's so much more fun to look forward to Derek coming home than about opening presents. This really is a wonderful time of year!


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