And all through the house
The toys are piled up--
Nerf guns, toys balls and Marcie’s zhu zhu mouse
Dad’s working hard
To clean up the mess
And Mom’s on the computer
Working- or trying her best.
“Dear Santa, I like to be nice to my family. I like to cook cookies for you and and apple for your reindeer. Sincerely, Casey.” [And we didn’t help Casey with the spelling at all.]”Dear Casey (and Marcie and Tate), Thank you for the delicious cookies. Dasher loved the apple. Next year please leave milk. Love, Santa.”
Casey’s reaction to his gifts from Santa.
Some of the ornaments Marcie made for the tree:
After the gift-opening and breakfast, while Tate was napping, Casey was playing Donkey Kong Country and Marcie and I were making Christmas ornaments, Jason climbed up on the roof to see what caused our leaking during the storm last week. The culprit was a couple broken roof tiles. He laid some plastic down, and even though it’s kind of a bummer of a way to spend Christmas, it couldn’t have happened at a better time. The rain that was supposed to arrive today came early, and it rained throughout the night. But no leaks. After we spent most of the day lounging in our pajamas and playing with new toys (and baking and making ornaments and fixing the roof), we headed over to Grandma and Grandpa S’s house for a Christmas meal. This was the view we were greeted with:
Jason’s parents were incredibly generous this year—as they are every year. This year, we asked people who were having trouble thinking of gifts for us to donate money to one of our favorite charities. We didn’t think anyone would do it—but Jason’s parents did. I got a lot of really great stuff this year. Some boots, a nice bag for work, a beautiful locket engraved with the words Forever Family, but I think the donation to Eagle’s Wings China (a group foster home located in Jiaozuo City in Henan, where Tate is from—the organization we actually visited while in China) was the best Christmas gift I received. I get emotional still, even now, just thinking about it. I really, really wanted to donate more money to them this year. Every little bit makes such a huge difference to them. (And to other organizations like them in China, including Philip Hayden Foundation, which is the organization that took care of Tate.) But dropping down to a single income and paying for an adoption have really spent us. So to know that money went there anyway . . . well, I just don’t really know how to put into words how that makes me feel. My eyes pool with tears, I get a lump in my throat. I feel so . . . so very, very grateful.
I hope everyone reading this, likewise, had a magical Christmas with their families—and that the magic and joy carry you through the new year!