Last weekend, we were in Kansas, celebrating Christmas with the extended family Saturday, the 23rd. What an incredible, growing bunch they are! You should have heard all the happy talk, laughter, little kids, and joy.
This year, we tried something a little different. Each adult (excluding Dad + Mom) was in a pool of names, and they gave to just one person. Then, the cousins each gave to one cousin plus an aunt or uncle. Some of freely shared who our person was, while others kept it a secret until the day. We really enjoyed being able to just focus on two people! Dad and Mom gave and received gifts from everyone. One thing I especially loved was hearing how the little ones came up with ideas for the aunt or uncle they bought for all on their own.
I’m grateful for family.
And now we are in Iowa, gathered for John and Chelsy’s wedding!
Drew knew what he wanted to buy for Uncle Joseph: work rubber boots! That little guy was so excited!
John went to Iowa the day before to spend time with the Bontragers + extended family, and then he and Chelsy came to celebrate with us Saturday!
You probably don’t understand how special of a gift the above was! Andrew had Ruthie, and he wanted to get her glasses, as Ruthie loves Tina’s glasses. That look is priceless.
Liddy had Mary!
Calia’s love of animals came through with her gift!
A selfie going on here.
Ruthie knew she wanted to get me a hat and a pink one!
Drew making use of his new dump truck.
My sweet “puppy.”
This is an extremely practical gift: a director’s chair for Mary to use with face painting.
Melanie did an incredible job with calendars for Dad and Mom. I love looking through them.
Mary’s labor of love making cards for GiGi!
Some rested in the afternoon, and some of us played games.
We did our traditional Christmas program in the evening.
“The meek shall eat and be satisfied:
they shall praise the Lord that seek him:
your heart shall live for ever.”