{I surprised my family with a weekend in Denver…I didn’t even tell Kelly}

Sometimes I wish I could slip back into time and be a small child that can’t sleep on Christmas Eve with an excited heart.

As a child you are oblivious of other things going on around you.

{A night ice skating with my sister and her family}

I have said recently that the age I am now is very real.


You can’t turn your head and pretend not to see, hear or experience life or the pain of others.

{Larmier Square in Denver at night}

This Christmas felt different.

This was our second Christmas during my parent’s divorce.

I want to be honest and say that my parent’s divorce is still hard to believe.

I think that at holidays you can notice the change the most.

{Ready to see White Christmas in Denver}

I say this not because my parent’s had a good or easy marriage but because I thought they made it through in spite of the hard years.

Even with all the hardships over the years I was still so thankful I had my family together.

{Ice Skating with my boyfriend}

I honestly knew that forgiveness had been given and washed away over past hurts….and I couldn’t believe that those second, third, fourth chances were thrown away to hurt again.

With my whole heart I believed the past was behind us.

About three Christmas’ ago I was looking around my sister’s home on Christmas Eve and watching my whole family together.

My sister and brother-in-law had a new born little boy and their other two little girls around them.

My younger brother was by the fire with my three children swarming around him like usual.

My own husband not far from my side.

And my mom and dad.

I remember going up to both of them separately and thanking them for working to keep our family together.

I had expressed that there were many years that I had wanted them to be separate and I was now so thankful that my children could be with both of them together.

I had tears in my eyes as I thanked them for how much being together as a family meant to me.

{Our beautiful town}

I have hurt for my children.

Their relationship with my father was always different than the one he had with his own children.

I get little innocent questions while standing in line at the post office.

I catch little tears because they know they have lost something special but they don’t quite yet know what it is.

They know that something wrong happened but in the beautiful way that children can so easily see right from wrong.

They don’t know the details and they don’t have to.

They know that grandpa lives with someone else…and it is not grandma.

{Our own white Christmas}

I also know with my whole heart that this whole experience has made me cherish my own little family more.

Work harder.

Love more.

Forgive faster.

{Taking a break for hot cocoa and a candy cane}

What I love about my family is that we have found great joy through all of this.

We love each other even more.

We know what there is to lose.

I love the way we can laugh and see the good around us too.

Our glasses are half full…always!

It has shown me again and again that the Lord helps you forgive when you ask Him.

Working towards forgiveness has freed me from chains that I was never supposed to carry in the first place.

{Early Christmas morning}


This Christmas as I was making dinner for everyone I got a call.

A call from one of my dearest and closest friends.

Her grandma and grandpa had been traveling a short distance to their daughter’s home (my friend’s mom) and had been in an accident.

Her grandfather died instantly and the grandma is currently in critical but stable condition.

As her tears started to flow and her voice cracked …my heart broke.

Her family was broken that day too but for very different circumstances.

As soon as I got off of the phone my family prayed for her family.

Life is real.

It hurts, it brings joy, it brings pain and blessings.

It is work.

Hold on tight.

Love those around you as if there is no tomorrow.

{Making snowflakes for the school they are opening at Sandy Hook}

We are all broken… some a little and others a lot.

That is ok.

That is why we need each other.

{A fun afternoon with cousins}

So, maybe this Christmas felt a little different.

I think it felt different for lots of people.

Maybe we were all feeling what the Lord wants us to feel.

Maybe He was breaking our hearts for the things that break His.

What extravagant love could come out of a world that felt each other’s pain?

What kind of a world could be created?

I want to play a part in THAT world!