Mike read the Christmas Story. The kids paid close attention, having been warned that this would be good info for the upcoming games of charades.
We then settled on our gifts for Jesus. Each person had a budget, and the house pot allotted a healthy buffer..... We also brainstormed ideas for leveraging our donations for next year.
All got involved in decorating the Birthday Cake for Jesus. Alas, it was a cake malfunction of cosmic proportions. I managed to weave in the catastrophe by saying that our sins create a GAP between us and God. We took this photo early in the day as we weren't sure what the cake would look like by the time of the party. I've decided to make Twyla's Retreat Cake Balls with the left overs.
At this point the kids brought down presents for family. We plan to open these on New Year's Day. Mike fixed the wifi and so I caught up on blogging and email. He also fixed the wind chimes that had been blown around the neighborhood earlier in the week. We all rejoice in having Mike home this year....and I find myself praying for those who are experiencing Christmas without a loved one at home.
We tried several times to reach family on Skype. We were able to reach John and Mary K (one of Mike's sisters). It was a bit late after getting off the phone with her to try others. (But our KIDS had a surprise for us on that count - LOL).
Finally, time for our Birthday party...and the GIRLS Skyped in. How cool is that? That happened last Thanksgiving too. Totally by "chance". Bre and Krista were able to join in the singing and watch the festivities via Skype.
I asked questions, explained symbolism - even the gap in the cake which by this time looked like a cross. ::snort::
We lit the 2010 to symbolize Christ (and discussed how much older than that He is), then each of us lit our little candy from the Christ candle to show that we are to "Shine in the Light of His Glory." We even lit candles for Bre and Krista as they joined us via Skype.
The boys later joined us - 2 a.m. for them, midnight for the girls....5 p.m. for us....we lost video but oh what fun it was to listen to all of them talk and share...plain and simple when we all get together at one time (either in real life or via Skype) it's loud, chaotic and great fun. ::snort::
We had our Christmas dinner of lasagna, salad and garlic bread....and then played a few party games.
Pin the Star on the Stable...fairly self-explanatory.....
Gabriel's Telephone...the old gossip telephone game...started with a "message from Gabriel" and ended finally with Mary or Joseph.... This message started as, "A baby is a wonderful gift at Christmas."
Charades is always a family favorite. Today all selections had to deal with the Christmas story in some way.
I'll post some hilarious video clips next...A few random shots in closing:
At the end of the day, our pet, guards Jesus and Mary is flat on her face....destruction everywhere in the scene.
Many of you are just now starting your Christmas. We pray your Christmas is as Merry as ours has been.
Living all of life before the face of God...