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I love to laugh and love with my family, read, exercise, cook and sew, all the while giving thanks to God for his immeasureable love and faithfulness to me.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Christmas 2016--Christmas Eve

One of the things I love most about Christmas is keeping all of the old traditions alive.  This year was no different!

We started off Christmas Eve heading down to the Market.  First stop, to a local brewery to pick up a last minute gift.
Then we hooked up with Lala, Papa and Uncle, who were also down there!
We can't go down and not get a treat...
...even if it is bigger than someone's head!  Ha!
So many yummy, interesting and even strange foods to see.  Need some pigs feet?  Check.  What about a Hungarian torte?  Yup.  Perhaps some Polish sausage, Irish soda bread, hummus, imported French cheese or sheep's stomach?  They have it all!
After we got back, we spent some time chillin' and then it was time to get ready for Christmas Eve service.  This year we went to Papa's church.
This picture basically sums up their two personalities!  I die...so fitting
Afterwards it was back to our house for our English tea.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good night!

The Noodle's a decade old!

Right before Christmas, the Noodle celebrated her birthday.  10 years old--double digits!
Her actual birthday, the 21st, fell on the last day of school before break, so we kept it pretty low-key. It's always good to start the day out with presents!
Since I was already on break, I popped into her classroom with her treats--I miss those opportunities now that I'm back at work!
After her request of white bean chicken chili for dinner (a standard for quite a few years running now), we went to our high school girl's basketball game and watched them clobber the other team. Our babysitter is a starting player so it was fun to watch her play too!

Since Uncle was going to be coming into town in a few days for Christmas, we postponed celebrating with family until he was here.  We saved her party with friends until the week after Christmas for everyone's sanity!
We couldn't believe Uncle had never seen the Lego movie!
For the family meal, the choice was obvious...Chinese food for the win!
 Mint chocolate chip icebox dessert--super yummy!
Noodle--You are smart, clever, funny, loving and definitely less of little girl and more of a tween! Ha! Daddy and I love to watch and see how you are growing into your own person.  No surprise, you have some pretty distinct ideas and thoughts!  We are so proud of you and can't wait to watch God work in your life this next year!  We love you to the China moon and back!!!

December happenings

****Considering I started this post in early December, it is time to get caught up and post this bad boy!

The calendar flipped and now it is December!  My most favorite time of the year!
Right after Thanksgiving we decked our halls and brought out allll the decorations.
I love how festive everything looks.  What better way to kick off the Christmas season than with a little bubbly?!  #popclinkfizz
We also had our neighbors over for what is turning out to be an annual event--making goodies to share with our other neighbors as a way to show them honor and celebrate the season.
Another tradition that we love is having hot pot with our good friends, right before Christmas.  It is a wonderful way to slow down, catch up and enjoy the season.
There is always sooo much food, but we manage to put a pretty good dent in it!  
This year, we combined it with white elephant gifts.  
 Someone wanted this lovely shirt and so took it...!
 As J always says, "You can never have too many buckets..."
 Mei Mei sums up how our family feels about hot pot!
There was cookie baking, decorating, and of course, LOTS of eating ;)
 She definitely went with the "more icing is better" concept this year, but boy, were they tasty!
Someone also went and turned 10, but I'm going to save that for another post, because this one has gotten ridiculously long!