Christmas - a day set apart to remember and praise the gift of God in the person of His Son - sent as a babe, destined to die for our wretchedness and grant us an ADOPTION into His heavenly family. I am now a child of the King - a daughter and full heir of His entire inheritance - without a doubt, by faith alone, set into His family by nothing I have done or could ever do - merely to accept the wrapped-up gift of His salvation and thank Him forever.
Joyous Christmas to all of you from ALL of us! We didn't think we would be able to handle the opening of gifts today - but we did. We didn't think the jetlag would leave us alone for quite some time - but it has! John is now at work for 3 nights in a row ... the only one of us desperately trying to STAY on China time!
Greatest joys - Lushi and Christina are home .... we are ALL home and enjoying the separated time of holy-days with snow falling on top of snow already piled all over which fell while we were in China. We arrived home 7:30pm Christmas Eve to a fully decorated and cleaned home - thanks to my wonderful daughters! All of the presents were wrapped and under the decorated tree .... perhaps leaving home for 3 weeks before Christmas does have some advantages!
Greatest trials - 1) Christina is DEATHLY afraid of even the smallest of dogs ... and we have a large golden retriever that is an INSIDE dog ... keeping them apart has been a real job! She is nearly always chatting or laughing and gets along well with all of the children. She is trying different foods - some she likes and some she does not. And 2) poor Lushi not being able to communicate well to us - so very hard on him. At breakfast, lunch and dinner, he peeks over my shoulder while I'm in the kitchen and says, "noodles" ... half in demand/half pleading!! He's had noodles 3 out of the 4 meals so far ... even for breakfast! He has searched the refrigerator and spices for anything to "help" to make it spicy and tasty! He is not easy on the boys, giving Nathan several face plants in the snow today .... but Nate only came in whimpering, not balling, with tears. He is tender to help when he can. They both seemed to enjoy opening a few presents today.
Well I started this note just after putting the younger children to bed (and Lushi who is not on US time yet) at 10:30. Then Caitlin and Grace and I chatted, shared and then decided to watch "Pride and Prejudice" that Cait got for a present. We outvoted Grace who wanted to watch her "Half Blood Prince"!! So now it is after 1:30am and I must go to bed. The laundry has not stopped - even over Christmas Eve and Day .... like John's Mom always said, "it's like shoveling poop against the tide!"
God bless you, every one!!