Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Christmas 2011

It's the last day of January and that seems like a great time to post about Christmas.

Ten years ago, Martin and I decided that since we were the first to marry out of our siblings that we should establish a tradition for Christmas. We would love to be home (New Jersey) and home (Tennessee) for every Christmas but with ten hours in between the two, we knew this wasn't possible. So we started doing every other year. It's hard being away from one family for Christmas but we wanted to be fair and wanted to establish a tradition before any kids came into the picture.

This year was our Christmas in Tennessee. I refer to every Christmas as our Tender Tennessee Christmas. It's by far one of my favorite Christmas songs ever.

There were some things that were different this year than other years. My granddaddy died last December so this was our (Martin and mine) first Christmas without any grandparents. God has been so gracious and has taken each of them one at a time. So it was a gradual loss. The upside was that my mom and dad had more time. They were able to relax and enjoy their children and grandchildren without thinking about or taking care of their parents. I feel like I was able to chill with my daddy more this year than in years.

Here are some pics of our time. Sadly (and pretty typical for me), I didn't get any of Martin and me. I've got to work on that. Maybe when we go to Scotland this year I'll remember (yes, we're going to Scotland for our tenth anniversary!).

This was Layna's first Christmas. She looks like a Jones doesn't she?

Caryss has always loved dressing up and Braelyn (now 3 yrs old) loves it just as much. They were going to put on a show for us but Caryss got cold feet (she is such a mini-me)

This is what happens after four children open presents.

Uncle Clint got Braelyn a Supergirl outfit and she had to put it on immediately

And Gavin got Superman footy pjs.

Here are all the grandkids with Nana and Granddaddy
(LtoR - Caryss 7, Layna 11 months, Braelyn 3, and Gavin 6)

On Christmas day after church we headed over to my Aunt Linda's house. Here are all the second cousins on my mother's side. The Jones/Disney (all Lawson) crew
(LtoR - Layna, Alysha, Caryss, Allison, Gavin, Preston, Kristin, Bethany and Braelyn)

I made my sister put on my nerd glasses and we did a side by side. She obliged. She's cool like that.

We had to get back to New Jersey right after Christmas because I had a biopsy on my thyroid three days after Christmas. It hurt. I'm not going to make it sound pretty. My neck was swollen for over a week and I had a hard time talking for 8 days. You know not talking was super hard for me.

I took a picture of myself on New Years. I wanted to show off my new pink lipstick. (It's MAC speak louder.) I love it. But this picture is mainly to memorialize my biopsy marks. Everything came out negative (remember, this a good think in medical terms!) The expression fits how I felt (annoyed - that I had to get a biopsy even though my blood work came back normal, sleepy - I slept a lot after the biopsy, sad - that I had no power to my voice).

Last thing. (If you've lasted this long you must be family.) I am thinking about changing my major. I'm majoring in Management Information Systems (MIS) right now and I have about a year left if I continue full time but the courses are getting more challenging and I'm not sure I want to keep on with them. I am LOVING my business courses and I'm able to apply what I'm learning right away in my job. If I continue on in my MIS degree I'm going to have to go down to part-time and it's going to take me two years to complete the degree. If I change my major to business, I'll be able to continue full time and simply go one more semester than I had planned. Decisions, decisions. The reason I started a degree in computers is because of my job and that job has changed drastically. I'm not working in computers as much as I originally was. I've got to decide soon so if you read this, pray for wisdom for me.

Last night I was studying in my study chair in the living room and I just couldn't stop smiling at this little spot in the living room. So I took a picture of it. It just makes me happy.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Never Once

While I was home for Christmas (hopefully I'll get a post up of some pics soon), my three year old niece, Braelyn wanted to dance in her pretty dress up clothes. My brother had a Matt Redman CD and she would ask for him to turn it on "Scars and Bubbles." The song is actually, "Never Once" on his 10,000 Reasons album. She knew all the words. But one part says, "scars and struggles on the way but with joy our hearts can say..." Matt Redman's English accent can easily mess up struggles and bubbles in a three year old (and a 34 year old!).

I bought the album and have themed "Never Once" as our theme song for 2012. I've really needed the truth in the song this week because I'm kind of ready to throw in the towel and quit it all. (More on that later.) I wanted to put the video on here with the lyrics. I enjoy SEEING what is being sung. I cry more that way. Enjoy.