Sunday, January 10, 2016

christmas 2015

oh christmas. the busiest time of year that we are supposed to be "relaxing". :) always a blur. but always a blessing. for our family this year, we tried something new. instead of just andy and i getting the boys gifts, we decided to do stockings like normal...but to have each person get each person 1 gift. i really want to develop a heart of giving and generosity in my teaching them "how" to give is a big deal. so each person had to think about the person they were buying for, and think of something they would like. this was the most fun for me...seeing what they chose for each other. they had the greatest ideas and did so good!! it really made christmas special!!! definitely our new tradition!!
next we were off to granny's house...had some hang time on christmas eve with the cousins...and our christmas brunch the next day! lots of noise and chaos as usual...and we are waiting for one more little guy (aunt karis' baby) any time now!! the vanderveers were next...and some extended time there! saw the new star wars movie, and six flags...and our yearly dinner at the stewarts!!

pre-christmas fun

december is always packed...and as usual, i'm way behind on all my pictures, so i'm trying to play catch up. there's always lots of parties, and our annual marshall/vanderveer pre-christmas breakfast for dinner....but i've been terrible about taking pictures. one thing fun was that we signed up to host international students who were interested in having dinner in an american home. they connected us with two chinese we had them over for dinner one night! i admit, i was hesitant. the unknown is always a struggle for me...being excited about something that i have no idea about. yikes! but the Lord is so gracious with me, and continues to teach me about believing His word. relaxing and trusting him. and of course, it was awesome. cynthia (left) and julia (right) were so sweet. they even brought a ginger bread house for the boys to put together. it really was fun getting to know them...and we were SO proud of the boys! they talked and laughed with was really sweet to see them interact and love on strangers!! we anticipate many more dinners with these sweet ladies!!

andy has the privilege of officiating several upcoming weddings...this one was in town, and so it was fun to have the marshalls with us!! looking forward to many more weddings!! i think we have 5 from nov '15-july '16!! we really love this stage of life!!!