We meant to post this before we left town for Christmas. . . oh well.
The several weeks have been full. Full of travel, full of activities, full of family and full of . . . well, everything else that goes along with raising 2 young girls.
Early November brought the death of my grandpa, Papo Bursch. He turned 90 in September and decided shortly after that he was finished with his worn out body here on earth. He was a wonderful man and it's hard to imagine we're about to celebrate Christmas in NM without him. Oh the memories of him dressing up as Santa for all the great-grandkids. I'm only sorry my girls won't remember him. I'm grateful that he's with the Lord in glory.
After spending a week in NM with family, we ended up driving straight to Gunnison to celebrate Thanksgiving with Mom, Dad, Jenny, Aunti Zana, Great Aunt Evie and Grandpa Hulsbos. We had a great time in the Colorado sunshine and while it was a long 2 weeks away from home, it was good to be with family.
(yeah. . . you can ask Brad about why the Slease family is wearing hats. . . )
The girls with their Great Grandpa Hulsbos.
The day after we returned to UT from Thanksgiving, Brad flew to Houston for a week of work. He had a great time and we had a major windstorm that knocked out the power in 1/2 our house for 2 1/2 days. :) Oh yeah, below freezing outside and everything. Several houses on our block had 1/2 power and so luckily we could run space heaters (since of course the 1/2 that was out was the fridge, freezer, furnace, and various strange lights throughout the house). What an adventure. . . or a nightmare. At any given moment it felt like one of the two.
We did get out of the house for some beginning Christmas celebration stuff. Primary Children's Hospital does a fundraiser each year where people donate decorated Christmas trees, gingerbread houses, wreathes, quilts, playhouses, etc. to be auctioned off to donate the money to the hospital. We went to see the trees this year and WOW. Here's the girls with the Snoopy tree.
After Brad returned from his week in Houston, he took off 2 days later for a week in Southern California. Yeah, rough life for him. He had lunch in Malibu, slept in a nice hotel room and went to Wood Ranch BBQ. We didn't do much while he was gone except get ready for Christmas and do 'projects' for Addy's school. It actually was a relaxing week and I had a lot of friends reach out to us to keep us company with Brad gone.
Now we're preparing to celebrate Christmas while trying to maintain the true meaning of Christmas in our mindset. We've done a lot of talking with Addy about Jesus' birth and we've also tried to explain cultural Christmas traditions (like Santa) after people asking her what she wanted Santa to bring her for Christmas. All she could offer people as an answer was a blank/bewildered stare so we thought we might want to explain the Santa thing. Now she wants to meet Santa. Oh well, trying to teach history to a 2 year old might be a bit deep.
Anyway, we've made yummy Grama Juice Christmas cookies, visited Christmas street to see the lights (our neighbors across the street have a better display than all of Christmas Street put together. . . oh yeah, the lights are coordinated to music!), and we've had a few Christmas gatherings. It has been a blessing to have Brad home this last week and to be together as a family again in preparation for Christmas.
We hope your family has a very Blessed Christmas as you recall the good news the angels proclaimed to the shephers "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will bring great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord." (Luke 2: 10b-11) We know this news has brought great joy to us and we pray it will bring great joy to you this Christmas.