and the Johnsons were up too late and complaining, crying, arguing the existance of Santa, etc. etc. (Memo to self: be sure Jaden is asleep by 8:30) The day went pretty good, Tait had an episode when we got ready to go to church-other than that it was great. Everyone is in bed now and we are ready for a big day tomorrow. i just love these two kids! My favorite part of Christmas is watching them Christmas morning..its going to be great.
I finally watched the end of "Its a Wonderful Life" this morning and I can say that after years of watching the movie I did notice something new this year. It is Mary-George Bailey's wife. Mary is the unsung hero that I have missed all these years while focused on George. George is a wonderful character and I do love him, but Mary is awesome. She has hope and dreams herself and while they don't involve the big ideas of her husband, they are real and noble too. She is the rock that keeps her family together and the one that steps up to save the day when George starts to unravel. She is just a loving wife and mother who will do anything to keep her family together and happy. That she has slipped past me undetected for so many years is no big surprise really. How many of us have great mothers that we take for granted? Mothers who do all the hard work to make a family go, and yet never get (nor seek) the recognition they deserve? My own Mom has done that for years. Year after year she puts up with her own George Bailey and her family of 4 boys and their wives and kids. I guess its time to acknowledge Mom and all she does. Love you Mom.
Tonight will celebrated the day that Dori and I got to meet Jaden for the first time. It was Dec 22, 2002 in Lanzhou China. I will never forget that day, Tait's birth, or my wedding day for as long as I live. It was really cold and we had already had an airplane ride and very cold bus ride that day. So, late that afternoon, after checking in the hotel we got word that the babies were in the lobby. So we went down and meet this baby that we had thought so much about for the 18 months prior. And she was beautiful - and cried her little lungs out for much of that first night! It took a few days, but once Jacen finally accepted us and gave us her love, she gave it all to us and never looked back.
It has been a good week. Monday I had a great date, Tuesday was a Christmas party for church staff and board, last night I got some shopping and wrapping done. I do miss Dori and wich she was here, but life is going on. My kids really help to remind me of two things: First is how wonderful their Mom was and second is that life continues to roll along and they need me. They need me happy and healthy and ready to love and care for them.
As I read the cards and Christmas letters from people it is always with a mixture of feelings. On the one hand there is a joy that these familes are so happy and joyous, on the other hand it reminds me of the tough time we've been through and it can hurt to reflect on that. I guess it is hard to share the joy when it's hard to feel real good myself. But it is getting better. It is going to be really nice to be with the kids these next few days just laugh and watch their excitement grom with each new gift they get.