Last night was my favorite night of the whole year. It's been this way for about the past five years. It's when we come home from a wonderful meal and time of fellowship from my mom's house, and we decorate the house for Christmas. We used to do this on the day after Thanksgiving, but one year Todd went in to work with the sheriff's department, and all the boys were young and had no plans, and I thought to myself, why not?
I didn't tell Todd, either, he was surprised when he got home to discover this, and he loved that it already done without him having to be the one to do all the heavy lifting. So, over the years, we've kept this tradition up, though it's changed and evolved from year to year.
These days, I know that realistically, I can ask the boys to help me for one solid hour. We all run around like crazy elves and the whole house is a giant mess, with glitter flying all over the place, but in that time they've pulled it all out from the attic, brought all the boxes downstairs, set the tree into place and fluffed the branches, and it's fully decorated. While they're doing the tree, I run around and put all my favorite things into place. All in all, it's probably two hours worth of work, but the house looks beautiful to me, and to a few other people, and that is all that matters.
My goal is not perfection, and I love changing things up every year. Jonah keeps me grounded and reminds me not to overdo things. He likes things simple, and if stresses me out AT ALL, then what is the point? The good Lord knew I needed a Jonah in my life.
I also make sure to tell them how thankful I am to them for their help, and I reassure them they're my favorites. (Poor Graham, he wasn't home to be told that, but give him a few days, and he'll be my favorite.) I don't expect them to want to hang around much afterward, I always tell them if they give me an hour, I'll give them the rest of the night to do whatever. ;) They love going to all the stores on Thanksgiving night with their friends, and I think they hit up a bunch of them last night.
As they get older, my expectations change. What used to take four hours now only takes two. My house won't win any awards for decorating, but I love how festive it is, and how there is a touch of Christmas in every single room (almost), and it makes me happy. I want my home to look beautiful, of course, but more than that, I want it to be radiant with the love of Jesus. I want people to tangibly feel His presence when they walk through our front door, and I want them to know this is a haven for them. I also want it feel warm and welcoming, and cozy enough for someone to curl up on the couch with a blanket.
That is always my prayer. And I pray and ask God to help me to always be content. I love Instagram, and I follow some crazy talented decorators on there, but I have to be careful that I don't scroll too much. I had to pray that just last night, because I could feel a little discontent creeping in. I asked God to take it away and to make me satisfied in Him, not with all the stuff and junk of this season. I always have to ask for the right mindset and perspective, and He is always faithful to answer.
This is just one picture that I took last night, I'll share the rest with you next week, but I need to run. I'm meeting my mom and sisters for a little shopping and lunch date. Thanks for reading, friends. Love to all.
(Left to right: Lisa, Mom, Trish, me. This is my favorite picture from yesterday.)
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