Wednesday, January 4, 2012


"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Go now and rest for you are weary with sorrow and much toil. Tonight you will sleep in peace."

Do you know where that quote comes from? Perhaps I'll enlighten you in the next post (guesses welcome in the comment section- no cheating via google).

Any way. I really like that sequence of words. Doesn't it just make you want to sigh and relax? Instant relief. You don't even have to be doing anything strenuous. Enter self. Sitting, typing, drinking tea. And still, ahhhh. I can peace out in peace. Just kidding. Haven't finished typing.

So why am I going on and on about this quote at the beginning of my Christmas post? Well, because I think it suits the reason for the season. The big picture born in a little manger. Can I get an Amen?

Barkley. Sleeping in peace
Because of Jesus, we can sleep in peace. We can unload pain, brokenness, guilt, shame, fear and sin (Someone else is carrying it for you). I don't know about you, but if I were there that night and had any inkling what the birth of Emmanuel meant, it wouldn't be no silent night (insert happy dance and much shouting singing, laughing and more dancing).

On a complete tangent (sorry this is just how my brain works sometimes). Have you noticed how Western Christmas music for the most part is very... solemn and reverence inducing? This is not bad, but I've been pondering it since having some conversations with my Colombian co-worker who mentioned being used to celebratory, more up tempo music. Why not? I mean it's only a world altering event. A couple cheers and jigs wouldn't be uncalled for. Anyhoo. Just an observation.

I now return you to your regular scheduled posting.

This was my first Christmas in my entire life (pretty sure about this) that I spent away from my nuclear family (read: My very good reason for this separation is called the Pacific Ocean. Or Atlantic. Or Arctic. Whichever way you prefer to fly. So, instead I headed up to my very amazing aunt and uncle's place in the middle of  a couple of acres of land. My uncle was kind enough to light up a fire in the fireplace every day I was there (sooo good since I'm basically perpetually cold).

Christmas breakfast. Don't drool on your computer.
I know the grits and fried egg look suspiciously alike,
but the top one is the egg (yes, I wanted a second helping

of grits--who wouldn't?).
Aunt opening presents!
Christmas morning, I woke up at about 8:30. Not from excitement per se, but just from the fact that since I've started working, I can't seem to sleep later than 9 (yes, very frustrating). My uncle fixed me up some scrumptious sausage and egg and GRITS (enter drool) and some store bought muffins. After we ate, we moseyed on over to the presents. My aunt and I stacked and sorted and then the flurry of torn wrapping paper commenced. Yay.

But, we didn't have long to play with our new gifts as we had to get going on Christmas dinner. Oh baby let me tell you. We cooked up a STORM. Turkey. Homemade dressing. Mashed potato casserole. Green bean casserole (more drool). Dressing. Don't worry, we had time to change out of our PJs before the guests started arriving (extra plus!).

Other uncle carving turkey!
The peeps. My aunt and uncle don't have any kids of their own, but have accumulated one or two honorary children in their time. So there was me and another honorary daughter, my aunt and uncle hosts, my other aunt and uncle and their son and his girlfriend, and a neighboring couple. Just enough to be festive but not overwhelming.

I even got some quality Gchat Video time with my family! And the boyfriend was able to stop by from his family gathering for a couple hours!

This was when the bow-tying sessions started. Abraham got a bow-tie for Christmas and my uncle wanted Abraham to teach him how to tie a bow-tie. He hadn't tied one in a long time, apparently. I enjoyed watching.
Note the confused expression.

All to say, it was a good Christmas. No medical emergencies. No fires. Except the one in the fireplace. Just enough activity to keep us on our toes but not stressed out. Heaps of food. Loads of laughter and love.

The Christmas party. Wearing our hats from our poppers!

What a great time of being able to bask in the gifts of family and friends.

And at the end of the day? I peaced out in peace. With a very full tummy and heart.

How about you? Anything fun? Traditions? New experiences?

1 comment:

  1. I hope you continue your blogs, in-and-out-of-season.... We had a particularly quiet Christmas, enjoyed special meals with teachers I'd worked with in Wuxi (who flew in from NJ and BJ), and a special 'Element Fresh' wine-and-dine dinner evening. The Lord was present when there were no presents. We went to a new shopping mall nearby, that I was hoping to take Ian, just for the shear 'joy' of shopping and buying something to give mom and you, but it was cold. I did put up one of the manger displays, but it looks like your place, and Uncle Harv's/Aunt Suzy's place was well-lit and fired-up for the occasion.

    The new experience, like yours - it was the first Christmas we haven't spent together with you. You hit th'nail on th'head - it was the spending the time with family and loved ones that made the difference.... missed you terribly, but know we get t'see you soon in Singapore!!!

    We're so glad you were peaced-out and joined-in in all the vittles, opening presents, enjoying extended family and a brief time with the boyfriend. Mom and I went to the New Year's Eve service... turned-out to be 'thrown together' since many of the worship leaders were out of town... worship songs, short message, hot cocoa at the end of the service, home for some dessert with Ian (who hibernated throughout most of the holiday).

    Here's a special thank-you and love-you for your life as His Princess, and He, your Anchor, Prince of Peace, Lover of your soul, Kindred-spirit accompanying you in every season of your season (with bumps, bruises, misunderstandings, sin, along with the victories and triumphs) - we love you dearly, Michelle, and thank Him for you and every remembrance of you :)