Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Emmanuel-Christmas Festivities

Christmas festivities are in full swing this week in our household. This morning I was stressed about getting my "to do" list done and then I stopped.  This time last year I would have killed to have had a "normal and busy" week of fun Christmas festivities.  Cancer once again put me in my place.  This week at Hope's preschool christmas party my dear friend, Brandi captured this amazing picture of our girl.  I gasped when I saw it because it is so her.  Thank you Brandi!

Despite the fun of the week with all the festivities we had our first scare about David's health.  Monday when I picked him up from school he was crying for his Daddy.  All he could say to me was "Daddy is my favorite guy."  We swung by Daddy's office and got some loving on the way home and I just figured he was tired and missing Daddy.  A couple hours later we realized that he felt warm and he got pale and his eyes turned red and puffy.  Poor pumpkin felt terrible.  He was pretty pitiful looking:(

Our first gut instinct was to call UVA.  Then we realized that he is no long "on treatment" and fevers do not mean the same thing that they did 6 months ago.  We are surprised at how sticky this transition has been going from being totally involved with the oncology team at UVA back to his local provider.  In some ways we feel that the apron strings have been cut from our respected and beloved oncology team at UVA.  We are thrilled we are in this stage of his cancer treatment, but we feel at loose ends.  God has guided us and we feel blessed that we are where we are.

David has perked up considerably this week and he was able to sneak into school for a few hours today to enjoy his class Christmas party. 

Here he is with his teacher, Mr. Hoffman opening his gift exchange gift.  This picture really shows how MUCH hair this boy has!!
Cute girl enjoyed both of her preschool parties this week.  Santa came to visit and though she did not sit on his lap, she did not wail and scream either:)  She had me whisper in his ear what she wants for Christmas.  Here she is with her swimming buddy, Macy.
David is obsessed with my camera. Today during his school party he grabbed my camera and starting taking pictures.  Usually he only gets random body parts but this picture of me kissing Hope made me smile.  It is random and a little too close-up of my wrinkles but it makes me smile that she is giggling so hard. 
Brandi (who also took the beautiful picture of Hope above) made me this sign for my house.  I love it so much and I know it has a "christmasy" saying on it but I think it will remain in that spot forever.  We are blessed with a wonderful life because of our Jesus and each other. 
Another cute picture of Hope and her little friend, Brady at the preschool party.  Hope was quite mad this morning when she realized that preschool was closed today.  She was convinced that her "fwiends" were at "pweschool" and we were missing the action. 
One of the activities that we took to both boys' classes for their parties was this great find off of pinterest.  Instead of messy gingerbread houses that tend to crumble we provided the kids sugar cones and let them decorate them with green icing, sprinkles and M&M's.  I am such a dork for fun holiday activities.  From my preschoolers up to Kyle's fifth grade class this activity was a hit.
David and  Kelsey at their class party.
David and his other teacher, Mr. Nutter.
David and his sweet friend, Garrett.
Tonight our town hosted a prayer vigil for the Connecticut shooting.  It was beautifully done on the steps of town hall.  They even prayed for our school leaders and faculties.  It was so touching and beautiful.  After the vigil the local news station (WCYB) asked me for an interview.  I did not have any lipstick on and was too nervous so I sent the reporter Mike's way.  He was so thrilled that I did that:) Ha!
A candle for each of the victims.  Tonight a local pastor said something about Jesus' birth that I had not thought about.  We all picture that nativity scene as so beautiful and perfect.  We forget that barns are often dirty and smelly and not the most sterile environment.  Just like now we are all wondering how someone can plot evil against children, but when Jesus was born that is exactly what King Herod was doing.  He was ordering that all babies and toddlers be killed out of insecurity for his throne.  King Herod was not going into schools with a gun, but innocent lives were being cut way too short.

Despite the darkness we know that God is our hope and our light.  Tragedies never make sense to us and they break our hearts, but our God can take this tragedy, just like he took our cancer diagnosis, and bring beauty from the ashes.  Emmanuel-God is truly always with us.   

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