Thursday, December 27, 2012

{pretty, happy, funny, real} - Christmas 2012

It's been so long since I posted anything on the ol' blog that I thought the best way to make my reappearance might be by linking up with Like Mother, Like Daughter for {pretty, happy, funny, real}...


We started a tradition a few years ago of photographing our living room on Christmas morning before the sun comes up and the kids wake up. We were thankful this year to make it to bed by 2:45 a.m. on Christmas morning, which is much earlier than our record for Christmas morning preparations of 4:30 a.m.

There are years for which I have no pictures to document anything that happened in our family. I truly consider it a grace that a byproduct of my business is a nice camera and a photography habit for Joseph. It has assuaged my mommy guilt about not capturing important moments for our children. 

Next year when I'm feeling overwhelmed and think the house will never be ready for Christmas, I will be able to look at the photo and remind myself that, when the time comes, all will be well. I had to look at the photo from last year several times to bring some peace to my heart as time kept ticking and the house wasn't ready to receive the gift of Jesus. My external reality and internal reality are so linked; it's scary.

So, this next picture isn't pretty, but behind it is something truly beautiful. One of my regular customers contacted me with a request from her grandmother. She wanted to have a personalized Rosary made for every daughter and granddaughter in her family. I was thankful to be a part of such a meaningful gift, and I was genuinely moved by the maternal spiritual leadership of a woman making such a sincere gesture—a Rosary pointing them to the Savior and his mother. When she has long left this earth, they will hold that Rosary and, because of their relationship with her, will be pointed to God. Wow!


We don't often get the opportunity to really surprise our children. Through a series of events, we came into Legoland tickets a few weeks ago. They expired a few days before Christmas, so we decided to take the family on Gaudete Sunday. Rejoice! There are few things after all that bring my boys as much joy as Legos! I was so impressed, and my gaggle of little ones are the perfect age for the park! Check out this Christmas tree! It was one of many impressive Lego creations.

Aniston is in her last year at the sweet school that she has attended since kindergarten. The 8th grade class gets all the big parts in the Christmas program and she was thrilled to be a narrator. It pricked my heart to see all those little kids being the big kids on campus. I really love them! Perhaps one of the best things about sending our kids to a small school is that we get to watch their little community grow up together.

Another reason for mommy guilt—there are so many: I have a child with a Christmas birthday. Ander was born on the 26th, and I make extra attempts to make his birthday special. This year was interesting because he was sooo excited about it. Ander is a chill kid, so to see him light up about anything is gratifying to me.


Miles doesn't try, but he always cracks me up. I don't even know what he's doing in this picture, and I didn't notice when taking it, but it's exactly the kind of thing that makes Miles unique. Is he wondering how they made that pretzel out of Legos, is he trying to take it from the sculpture, is he pretending it's a weapon, is he just being silly, who knows!

Maybe the coolest sculpture in the park.


Daddy is Genevieve's favorite, for reals. Gramma is a close second. Joseph is the only one who can get her up & ready in the morning without major drama. No matter the problem, her answer is, "I want my daddy." Is this a youngest child thing or what?

Genevieve has two speeds: wide open or passed out. Moments before this photo was taken, she was singing Christmas carols while riding on a trolley through the streets of St. Augustine. Moments after, she was running through the streets sightseeing with her cousins.

After having my heart stirred while in prayer, and with the help of my sister, niece, Joseph, and Aniston, I recently took on a rather daunting project during the last week of Advent. I hope to share more about this experience very soon—once the kids are back in school following Christmas break and I have a few quiet moments to gather my thoughts. In the meantime, here are the fruits of our efforts and prayers: thirty one-of-a-kind, custom, personalized, remembrance Rosaries:

Be sure to visit the lovely ladies at Like Mother, Like Daughter to see more PHFR posts.


  1. Wow!! Beautiful! And, that photo of your redhead with Darth Vader… I swear it's my own son! Uncanny! :)

    Merry Christmas!

    1. Thank you, Leila! :) Merry Christmas to your crew!

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks, Kaitlin! I loved your clever highs and lows on Christmas. So cute! Sorry to hear that Hannah wasn't feeling well.

  3. Great post -- I think the Rosaries are pretty, after all, and yes, Daddies and daughters -- very special.

    1. Thank you for stopping by, Leila! Ah, good point. I did love how the rosaries turned out but didn't love the only photograph of them all together taken on my couch. ;)

  4. Legoland was so fun! Great pictures! The one of Vieve and Joseph is precious! Miss you all!!!

    =) Aunt Lissa


The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Proverbs 12:18

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