Ahhh...it is nice to be home. I think you are certifiably old when you make the statement "Vacation was nice but there is no place like home!" I remember my parents saying that and thinking that was the most ridiculous thing I had ever heard! I also remember wanting to go to the mall on most every Sunday afternoon and my mom saying no because she was tired. I vowed then and there to never be too tired on a Sunday afternoon to go do something fun with my kids. I've totally kept that promise. You know, assuming they think watching me take a nap is fun! hee hee! Perspective certainly changes when you get to be an adult.
I'm sitting in Dan's recliner wearing a Laguna sweat shirt (over my pajamas) sent to me by Taylor and Denise. The Christmas tree is lit but there are no decorations on it. The Christmas music is playing on Pandora and my baby boy is starting to wake. He is rolling around in his bed and every now and then, in a sleepy voice, says "Hi, Elmo!" He is talking to his new Elmo pillow from Aunt Cathi. That may win the award for the coveted "favorite" birthday gift this year. Although, it is in close running with the cash register my aunt gave him. That sweet boy had a great birthday. He is at that fun age where toys are so much fun to him. He oohs and ahhs over them. It is fun. And, he has so many interests right now that buying for him is easy. I have to show major restraint!!
Our trip was really good. The drive to our cabin was right at 9 hours. Factoring kids into the trip, it took us about 11 each time. That is due to stopping at Chickfila playgrounds for meals so they could run and play. We made the mistake of stopping once at Cracker Barrel on the way home. Dan is still scarred from that experience. Come to think of it, I may be too. Although, there was one highlight. The elderly lady next to me told me that I had beautiful hair (which has NEVER been said by anyone) and she said I was such a sweet, calm mother. That meant a lot to me. Until she told me Micah was one of the most beautiful little girls she had ever seen. And, until her daughter, who was paying the bill when her mother said the sweet things to me, told me later that her mother had dementia and "talked crazy" so please ignore the things she said. Oh well, I guess I don't have beautiful hair after all. It was nice for the 7 minutes that I actually believed it.
Due to the not-so-great Stomach Virus of Thanksgiving, 2012, we decided to cut our trip short. One of the motivations for that was to get home in time to hear Jon preach yesterday. Jon is our new Student Pastor. We are so grateful for his ministry at Stetson and really hated to miss his first sermon. So, it was nice to be back in time to support him and hear him preach God's word. I went to both services just to hear him twice. He did great. The past few months have been such a joy and Dan and I often comment about how blessed we feel to serve with Jon, Reggie and their families. That is certainly a sweet gift from God to have that renewed joy. We pray constantly for the Children's Minister God will soon bring to us.
As we prayed this morning during our devotional time together, I couldn't help but notice most of the things on our list had to do with our church. We are really trusting God for wisdom and direction and at the same time doing all we can to be the people God has called us to be personally. That includes specific things we can do as individuals at Stetson. I've been praying for a specific direction about a Sunday option. I've been seeking ways to help people not get lost in the "bigness" of our church. I've had a specific burden about moms who feel isolated and alone. We are both burdened for the marriages within our church. We are super excited about some new things starting in January for couples/families. And, we continue to be hopeful that God will add a Children's pastor very soon!
My day today will be spent reorganizing, cleaning out, getting ready for company this week, playing with Micah, doing homework with Jonah, serving dinner to my family (which is already in the crockpot..yay me!), decorating for Christmas, putting away vacation things, listening to music, visiting with a friend stopping by in a bit and basically just being "normal!" I'm excited about that. My surgery and time down taught me to be extremely grateful for the normal days. I'm happy to not need assistance today. Even in the mundane tasks ahead of me, I am keenly aware of the beauty of normalcy! And, speaking of normalcy, my sweet boy is now standing in bed, holding on to his lovey, Elmo blanket, Froggy and Buzz while saying "Mommy...Dadddy...Mommy?"
Going now to get that little guy and begin another day celebrating normalcy!