Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Hunt, 2013

It's been below ZERO here on the farm for almost a week now.
Does this once-California girl wanna cry? 
Pretty much.
But Christmas is here and there are traditions to keep and sometimes The Mama just needs to buck up. 

So when I want to have a pity party over the weather, the Cowboy hands me my coat and a scarf and a piping hot, to-go-cup of peppermint tea and invites me on an adventure... one with five kids, a dog, and enough snow gear to cloth an army.

I sat up front with the Cowboy, the dog in between us. I was trying with all my might not to be annoyed with the dog's stinky breath and her occasional whining. The Cowboy was grinning from ear to ear. The Charmer was singing Jingle Bells to himself, and Siah was of course asking a million questions about everything.
Our Solomon was fast asleep, and the girls had their dolls and hours of entertainment in the back seat. 

The sky was grey and the roads were slushy. It looked outside  to possibly be one of the worst days ever to climb the mountain to get a Christmas Tree. 

We started to climb the mountain. The snow covered trees were gorgeous, thousands of them perfectly decorating the hills around us. 

And then it happened... one glorious gift for this freezing Mama...
Suddenly we found ourselves above the clouds and in the mountains, of all places, there was sunshine and HOPE and I couldn't help but smile. 

We stopped at the Donut Mill and had some gigantic donuts. 

Got our tags for our tree at the middle school parking lot in that little mountain town.

And headed up the dirt road in search of the perfect Christmas tree.

The girls played for awhile... then they got cold and got back in the van.
Little Solomon slept... a deep, snoring  kind of sleep.
And the boys followed their Papa all over the woods until they found that 15 foot beauty.

Some days I think I'd just rather stay home. 
I'm so glad I married a man who convinces me to brave it and soak up the adventure and the joy of this place, of family, of Jesus at Christmas time, of Extravagant love come down.
Jesus bringing hope, lots and lots of hope. :)
That's Christmas.
It has very little to do with the tree, the parties, the gifts.
What makes Christmas, Christmas, is the greatest gift that was given on that very first Christmas. 
It's Jesus.
"'For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given.' {Isaiah 9:6}
God with us.
God stays with us.
The Christmas candle burns hot, gives its light,
gives its Light__ and the world lights up,
and Christmas goes on FOREVER now.
Christ, the always gift for all our days."
Ann Voscamp