29 November 2010

Christmas is coming

I love Christmas. The hopeless romantic in me died years ago, but it is resurrected every December when I revel in the wonder of Christmas with its pretty lights and Christmas music and tasty treats. I'm very sentimental about a lot of things during the Christmas season, but this year I'm especially excited about a new tradition we started at the very last minute in 2009. Now in its second year, I'm anxious to sit down with my family over the next few weeks to choose birthday gifts for Jesus.

I came across the idea on a blog last December, and it just made sense. Why hadn't I thought of it before? We tell the kids that Christmas is Jesus' birthday, but then we give each other gifts instead of buying them for the birthday boy. Kids know that birthday parties don't work that way, but we got it confused somewhere along the way.

So over the next few weeks we'll be talking about what kinds of gifts Jesus might like to receive for his birthday. Then we'll pick a gift or two or three from our family and put them under the tree. I'm pretty sure Jesus will be excited to see them waiting there until December 25th, even if he does already know what's inside.

As we go through the process, I'll share some of the gifts we discuss in case you want to buy Jesus presents as well. Or maybe you want a unique gift for someone who already has everything they need. I have ideas for that, too.

24 November 2010

happy day before thanksgiving

I know I won't have time to post tomorrow, so I thought I'd take a moment to wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration.

I love having a holiday that centers around remembering to be thankful. As I look back through our year, I see so many reasons to give thanks. It sometimes overwhelms me to realize, even in the midst of our struggles, how greatly blessed we are.

So Happy Thanksgiving from Peter and I and our 3 greatest blessings. I'll be back sometime over the weekend to post about some Advent and Christmas resources, but I'll be hanging out with family until then.

23 November 2010

turkey hunt

With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, we're definitely ready around here. Yesterday after school, the 3 kids invented a new activity. 2 turkeys would hide while the hunter, outfitted with bright orange safety goggles, searched for them with a Nerf gun. If not immediately found, they would let out a few gobbles to move things along. Once the turkeys had been shot one or more times, they passed the gun and started over with a new hunter.

Evidently you can move the kids to the city, but you can't take the hunter out of little Krahn children. After all, their tribe is known for being great hunters. Of course, I only lay partial blame on their heritage. The rest goes on the unnamed relatives who took them to the garage last fall to see a hanging deer carcass, as well as the ones who polluted our gun-free home with a Nerf gun in the first place.

16 November 2010

alternative gift market

Last year one of my dear friends decided she was tired of status quo Christmas gifts. She wanted to find ways to give more meaningful gifts and to help others do the same. Our of her passion, an Alternative Gift Market was born. This year she is far away, but the gift market will continue. If you live anywhere nearby, I encourage you to come check it out this Saturday. Whether or not you decide to buy, you'll have the chance to enjoy some tasty treats while you check out some wonderful local, national, and international organizations. We'll be there all day, so you can chat with us to learn more about the Norristown Community House, our new ministry endeavor, and From HIV to Home, one of my top 10 favorite organizations. If you live nearby, spread the word. If you don't, find an alternative gift market near you... or start your own!

11 November 2010

4 year old genius

Yesterday Garty and I stopped at a supermarket that had a giant blow up piggy bank out front. When we picked the other kids up from school, Garty was telling them about it. He explained that we saw a huge piggy bank at the "butt money store." I couldn't figure out why he would say something like that until I realized that the store was called "Bottom Dollar Food." Evidently he's really good with synonyms.

02 November 2010

national adoption month

It's National Adoption Month, which reminds me how fortunate I am to know so many amazing families who have been willing to think outside the box and experience the tremendous blessing of adoption. I have so many friends (in real life and the cyber world) who have loved and sacrificed until they thought their hearts would break for beautiful children who needed a forever family. I consider it a great honor to experience the ups and downs of adoptive parenting with them.

I love that my kids don't think they're unusual because they know so many other adopted kids. I enjoy seeing them get excited about welcoming home new friends. I can't wait to watch them as we celebrate our friends' first Gotcha Day later this month. I'm thrilled that they think we should adopt more kids and that they talk about doing it when they grow up.

Today I'm especially excited because they're downstairs making cards for their three cousins who will be staying with us for the weekend. They're always incredibly excited when any of their cousins come to town, but this visit is unusual because they have a brand new cousin that they're not going to be able to hold on their lap like their other new cousins. This cousin is way too big for babying, but he reminds me again that families are formed in all kinds of ways. It makes me smile (and cry a little) to think about it. I'm pretty sure God feels the same way.

P.S. Welcome to the family, John!