#12DatesofChristmas2014 | number six


{on the sixth date of christmas}

town square tree lighting and snow fall with some festive beverages

on the weekend, we went on a little Christmas-y outing to see the lighting of the town Christmas tree. or, the shopping center Christmas tree... it fills that place in my heart that longs for small town charm. there were horse-drawn carriage rides, stories with mrs. claus, s'mores making, a jazz band rocking some Christmas tunes, and santa himself! oh, and snow. real, old-fashioned, faux snow. listen, you get excited about that kind of stuff here in the desert. you joyfully take what you can get. and you should have seen all the arizonans wearing boots and puffers and dancing around in the faux-snow. hilarious. at least there was a chill in the air to make it slightly more believable.

what a fun night! we "bundled up" (and with a hopeful heart, brought a blanket and extra jacket for elinor) and grabbed some coffee and festive tea (you guys, have you had teavana's white chocolate peppermint yet? you need this) and set up shop by the tree to watch the whole thing unfold. elinor enjoyed a ride on grandpa's shoulders and got a primo spot for the tree-lighting.

elinor loved the lights. she threw her arms in the air and let out a happy "yay!" when those twinkle lights came on. how amazing to experience the holiday season with a 2 year old. everything is magic. and it is a great reminder of the reason for the season. the anticipation. the joy. the childlike wonder at the miracle of Christmas. on that note: we need to talk about elinor's baby Jesus glee. oh my. we have been reading through advent together and showing her various depictions of the nativity scene while explaining the setup to her. she points at that baby in the manger and gasps with delight before asking, "baby Jesus?" and then she pats her chest proudly and lets us know, "my baby". yes, elinor. He is your baby Jesus. He is your Immanuel. He is your Messiah. He was given as the greatest gift of all - for you. to live and die and rise again. conquering sin and death and bringing new life. He is the whole fulfillment of prophesy. the desire of nations. the Savior of all. we ask elinor whose birthday is on Christmas and she claps and throws her hands in the air and yells, "baby Jesus!" that unadulterated joy. the wonder and awe of that tiny baby. and as we keep telling her, the most special baby. elinor is so taken with that most special baby. that holy child. something about that name and the sight of the nativity scene has captured her heart...and melts mine. is there any greater joy than watching a little life learn about the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who condescended in meek and mild baby form? oh how i pray that the baby in the manger continues to enrapture her. i pray that her heart continues to find joy in the name of Jesus. that her happiness about that tiny baby grows into a deep love for the Man of Jesus, her Savior. may her heart burst with delight when she thinks of the miracle and wondrous gift of His incarnation. that God became flesh and dwelt among us. oh, how He loves us. and that's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.

p.s. the snow was not elinor's favorite. you should have seen that disgusted and weirded out face. we gotta try that again with some actual flakes. perhaps she is just a snow snob and won't except anything less than the real deal...