Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Our two week round-robin Christmas celebration with family. #1

The first leg of our Christmas round robin trip was North of Williston ND to visit our Youngest daughter Melissa, husband Tim and their children. The weather and roads were great for mid December.  We will not have pictures of the 4 children since they are foster children.  We had a lovely time while spending several days from Dec 13th until the 17th with them.   

 We were very impressed at their live tree and the old time hand made decorations.  Advent count down stars with numbers on one side and bible verse on the other.  There was paper chains the children had made, Strung popcorn and cranberries etc. We even got in on the stringing of the popcorn.  
 December 14th Divine worship service started out with 15 minute children s program.  Concordia Lutheran is a beautiful church and we enjoyed worshiping with our family.

 After the Church service and before Bible class and Sunday school, we had an opportunity to take some nice family pictures.  Above is a nice picture of Tim and Melissa.  

 At the home front, are their three beautiful dogs to greet us.  Left is Jake, Darla and the small black Rosco
Little kid foot print snowmen and the painting from Grandma Hanssen. 

We had so much fun making Chrismons 
for another tree decoration. They were printed off on card stock paper, cut out and outlined with either silver or gold glitter glue.  It was fun and they turned out so lovely.  Each one has a                                                      special Christ centered message.  

 This Chrismon project took some time but was well worth it. 

 Next old fashioned project was cut out Ginger Bread men. It was so fun to watch the excitement of the children as they cut them out and decorated with frosting outline. 
We had so many good things to eat.  Here you will see Melissa carving a big juicy ham and also poring the gravy for our special early Christmas meal.  

Jeff has a special friend when we go to Melissas. It takes no time for Ruby kitty to get on his lap to relax.  She loves him, we know that she misses her best friend Ansir since he has left to spend time in California with his birth family.  We all miss him but is nice to talk to him from time to time and hear how things are going for him.  He plans to attend college next fall. 

We had a fun evening of early gift opening. We enjoyed watching the children open and enjoy their gifts. It seems children add that special bit of excitement and joy for Christmas.     Below you will see Melissa and Tim both with their gift.   As I look at the picture of Melissa, I see a little hand pointing out a bird on her new apron and also a sippy cup in background that reflects the young children in the home.  

YEP, it is the right size, it should fit!

Dipping butter pretzel sticks and waffle pretzels in almond bark. It didn't take long with little hands to help.  

  They loved helping especially since they got to eat most of the broken ones.  Some of these would be sent with us as we traveled to my mother, Melissa's Grandma would enjoy this special Christmas treat. 

Below Melissa hangs a ribbon with Ginger Bread cookies. It added a festive look to the already decorated living room. 

Advent by Candlelight at ZION LCMS

 On December 5th 2014 many  ladies of our Church and friends joined together for a beautiful evening called Advent by Candlelight.  It was a good turnout and the program was awesome with explanation of many Christmas traditions and decorations and how each helps tell the good news of Jesus birth.  Many individuals decorated, provided a table setting  and also provided a special dessert for all to enjoy.   

Below you will see many of the beautiful tables and also the dessert table.   I am starting with the table I decorated.  I choose to use the German theme with the German pyramid as the center. 
 The origin of the pyramid came from Germany about 200 years ago when a poor farmer, a father of many children wanted to provide a unique special Christmas gift for his children and also wanted it to be affordable, so he made it and he created it to tell the true Christmas story of Angels, the shepherds, the wise men, and most important, Baby Jesus as the light of the world.  

 These special deserts were absolutely delicious, 
Too bad I didn't have enough room to try each one.  

 We sang many Christmas carols and 
finished with candle lite Silent Night.  

 This is the front of the church with the special setting for the program that included Christmas tree, cards, gifts, poinsettia, advent wreath, angels, nativity and more. 


 This is the tree in the Narthex centered around Epiphany.

 The outside of our Zion Church as decorated for Christmas. 

What a wonderful way to keep Christ in Christmas.  I hope this Advent by Candlelight becomes a yearly tradition for our church for years to come.