We had a great weekend.
Friday night started it off. Drew Jones and a group of guys went to the Y to play racquetball and basketball and work up a sweat. While us girls stayed snug at home baking cookies and talking about pregnancy. It was wonderful eating dough and laughing together.
Saturday was a productive day. Drew Jones' uncle came over and checked on some things around the house we had questions about. Then Brant, his brother came over for a haircut
(Drew Jones' can cut hair, and is quite good at it. So he cuts all his brothers and his Dad's hair. He used to cut mine into these short trendy bobs but now I have long hair that is driving me nuts this winter with static)
Then his Dad came and helped him install a new digital thermostat. And Drew Jones programmed it to be extra warm in the morning and evening for me as I am usually walking around with a blanket around my shoulders trying to keep warm these days.
Saturday night we went to a very festive Christmas party at our friends Joshua and Natalie's. So many friends of ours were there enjoying each others company. It was great to gather together, and look around at these faces I love and realize that every day for almost 5 years I have been choosing to live my life alongside them. I have chose them as an extension of my family and a big big family is a good thing. It makes you feel rich and surrounded by love.
As a couple of our dear friends Peter and Megan were leaving the party Megan came to me and kissed my cheek and hugged me tight. When she let go she held on to my hands and looked me in the eyes and told me how much she loved watching Drew Jones and I give of ourselves to the other. Tears welled in her eyes as she explained all the wonderful things she sees in Drew Jones as a man, a strong, loving, steady and giving man. I nodded knowingly. She went on to say that I am all of that too, and that it is beautiful to see. I was so blessed and encouraged by her words. It was the highlight of my night.
Sunday came raining and cold. We made our way to church and settled into our seats. We were warmed quickly by the energy and life in the room. It was a fantastic couple of hours. There was a sermon prepared, but singing and dancing, praying, confessing and praising went on for the entirety. It was so good to see people twirling, jumping, and laughing unconcerned about what people were thinking of them. The best way to describe how it felt is freedom. In fact I heard people shout "freedom!" it reminded me of Braveheart and made me laugh with joy. Mostly I enjoyed and danced, held a sweet child and danced with her. She would smile and throw her head back with her eyes closed soaking up the Spirit in her perfect childlike way. God is always with us, but I love when we realize it as a group and respond. It is filling and leaves me contented.
After church a wonderful afternoon of cookie baking with our family. It was comforting and fun. I especially love having another girl to connect with, as Brant is marrying the most lovely girl you ever could meet (Lauren) in May. I am so happy for Brant, but selfishly am quite happy for myself as well.
And can you believe it? One more party after cookie baking. We gathered for an Advent party at our friends Jon and Chrissy's. We ate, lit candles, read scripture aloud together and reflected on the living Word. What I loved the most was there were children running through our legs playing dress up, a puppy scrambling for crumbs on the floor, conversation swirling around us. Little Kayla (who is 2.5) eating handfuls of popcorn, climbing up on my lap hugging me tight and kissing me lightly on the cheek. Then climbing down screaming with delight at the top of her lungs and running down the hall. Again I felt full. And eventually sleepy.
So Drew Jones and I came home and snuggled on the couch like two puppies. We watched a delightful little movie, and then made our way to bed. Safe, warm, happy.