Monday, December 7, 2015

I'm in love with coconut cake. And Jesus is peace.

Hey Peeps—

Tonight at dinner my son Will asked me if I was trending.  Listen, I can barely post a status to my facebook account, so my guess is I am not.  My husband can lock our garage door from a phone in the middle of the ocean and here I am, trying to trend.  If someone is going to trend in our family it's going to be Billy.  I can promise you that. 

How was your Thanksgiving?  I can't believe it's already come and gone.  Thanksgiving has become one of my most favorite days of the year.  What a sweet time to be together and reflect on the blessings.   Sure we have a lot to be thankful for.  Jobs, good health, a roof over our head, but I guess the biggest blessing of Thanksgiving this year was my sister's coconut cake.  She left a whole one for me, and slowly over the last two weeks I've singlehandedly taken that baby down. (Everyone else in this house either hates it or would die if they ate it). 

In case you were wondering, the best time of day for coconut cake is in the morning, with a cup of coffee, by the Christmas tree.  This peaceful bliss usually lasts for about 3 seconds, until Jack comes to tell me he needs new pants because he grew 8 more inches during the night.  Or Zoe comes to cuddle with me and bumps my coffee, scalding my hands.  Then she tells me in the sweetest voice you can imagine, "I can't eat that mommy."  I agree with her as the eggs would incur an epi pen/911 situation.  And then she says, "It's okay mommy".  And then I feel guilty, and can't even feed my feelings because she's sitting there watching me in quiet judgment. 

This season of time is particularly sweet for me, as I have quit one of my nursing jobs and pulled Little Sass out of daycare for the month of December.  We are getting quite a bit of together time…today she called me "sir" all day.  Every time I did something for her it was, "Thank you sir" or "Yes sir".  Then she informed me she was calling me sir.  As if I hadn't noticed.  All day. 

She's also been with me as we have gone on a few outings to purchase Christmas gifts.  I always try and hide the items, yet somehow she seems to know to remind me at dinner where we went and what we bought.  "Mama.  We went to the Lego store today and got Star Wars for Jack".  Oy.  She's smart. 

The highlight of our time last week was during my migraine.  I had one hit after dropping Will off at school.  I knew I had exactly an hour before throwing up, and tried to plan accordingly.  First I did my hair.  Second, I put clothes from the washer into the dryer.  Third, I encouraged Little Sass to play in her room while I had my head in a Home Depot bag right on cue.  Every time I threw up, she'd yell from her room, "WHAT MOM???"  And I'd try to answer back, yet learned quickly that  exerting myself only induced more vomiting. 

If it sounds like I'm complaining, I'm not.  I promise.  To get to slow down this beautiful month of Christmastime and spend time with a daughter who surprises me daily, well, it's more than a gift.  Often I am speechless at the wit and humor a three year old child can have.  Billy and I just shake our heads at her as we listen to her talk, having to remind ourselves that somehow she didn't actually come from our gene pool, but somehow she is fully Repenning.  

This year we are getting to experience it all over again…what Christmas is all about.   The decorations feel new and exciting, as our youngest watched in amazement as I placed them all over our house.  Will followed her, following me, explaining what each decoration meant to him in his most kind big brother voice.  She listened intently and was in awe at his knowledge.  Two minutes later they were fighting over the advent calendar, but hey, sweet moments can't last forever, am I right?

Christmas feels different this year.  Our home is full and constantly buzzing.   Each of our children have different needs, struggles, fears, and hopes.   Billy and I are trying to teach them that their best friends in life live under this roof.   We sit down every day and talk together.  We discuss the events in our world.  And we speak as honestly as we can, as we share our perception of the recent current events that shake us all to the core.  Our children listen more than they ask questions, but I can see the concern behind their eyes, and more often than not, I'm at a loss for words.  At that point, I can only remind them of the hope they find in their faith, and to cling to God when they feel afraid. 

This past Sunday at church we started a new series on rediscovering…the message of peace was brought to us, reminding us that the Christmas season should be one of the most peace-filled times of the year.  Rather than run around crazy, I will reflect.  Rather than worry about what's not getting done, I will embrace my family, my simple life, and my need for God above all else.  I choose to remember this Christmas story is about more than a baby in a manger.   This story does not end that night as the shepherds gathered, but this story continues to grow in depth and meaning as that baby grew into a man who died to fulfill His Father's Will.   I will share that story with my children, in hopes of passing that peace along to them.   I have known this peace for a lifetime, and am especially thankful for it these last few weeks as death keeps winning and heartache becomes the norm. 

 Colossians 3:15 says, "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.  And be thankful". 

Merry Christmas.  Jesus is peace.