Christmas Eve

Good morning, everyone! Today is Monday, December 24th. What does today look like for you? I hope you're spending it with your loved ones, preferably snuggling in front of a fire eating copious amounts of sugar cookies. Unfortunately that's not what our Christmas Eve is going to look like. This morning I am working just a few hours for my job at the bank, and tonight Isaiah is working a long shift until 11:30 p.m. Not exactly ideal, but we're working with it. Who's going to set out the cookies for Santa with me? We don't have family in town, but this weekend my in-laws and brother in law are coming to visit and we have a pretty intense schedule of events lined up (per usual).

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So instead, I will be home alone tonight. I was pretty pouty about this for a few weeks. I'm so used to "going to my mom's side for Christmas Eve, opening presents from Santa on Christmas morning, and going to my dad's side on Christmas Day". Even in college I was able to visit my family over the holidays and I lived a lot further away! But instead of pouting I've decided to make Christmas Eve a lovely evening of reflectionprayer, and celebration.

Yesterday I spent some time cleaning the house and preparing for this relaxing and thoughtful time. (I can't remember if I've written about it on this blog, but one of my "stumbling blocks" to making things happen is having an organized space- almost to the point of lunacy). It's not perfect but it will do. I prepared some sugar cookie dough so I can do the fun part- baking and decorating!

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I'll also be spending a good amount of time reading the Bible and journaling. "Me time" is not something I make time for on a regular basis and is definitely going to be a focal point of 2013. I can foresee myself diving into motherhood without a single introspective thought, only to get burnt out too soon. I hope that this time of reflection will help further guide my intentions for the next year. For Christmas tomorrow, one of the gifts I'm going to give my husband is a large, handwritten letter of each and every one of my honest intentions. Usually I'm very private with aspirations. Not the ones that are easy, (i.e. go to the gym more, eat healthier foods, call my mom more often), but the deeper intentions, the desires of my heart that seem unreachable. This year, I want to be more fearless. I want to dream bigger and share those things with my husband. Truly, this is the most meaningful gift I could give, the gift of my heart, over and over.

I also wanted to share my favorite Christmas song with you all. This one has been on the top of my list for years now, specifically the one by Sufjan Stevens. It stirs my heart Christmas after Christmas, a joyful reminder to give my heart away.

"Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing"

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing

Tune my heart to sing Thy grace

Streams of mercy, never ceasing

Call for songs of loudest praise

Teach me some melodious sonnet

Sung by flaming tongues above

Praise the mount, I'm fixed upon it

Mount of Thy unchanging love

Here I raise my Ebenezer

Here there by Thy great help I've come

And I hope, by Thy good pleasure

Safely to arrive at home

Jesus sought me when a stranger

Wandering from the fold of God

He, to rescue me from danger

Interposed His precious blood

O to grace how great a debtor

Daily I'm constrained to be

Let that grace now, like a fetter

Bind my wandering heart to Thee

Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it

Prone to leave the God I love

Here's my heart, O take and seal it

Seal it for Thy courts above

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing

Tune my heart to sing Thy grace

Streams of mercy, never ceasing

Call for songs of loudest praise

Teach me some melodious sonnet

Sung by flaming tongues above

Praise the mount, I'm fixed upon it

Mount of Thy unchanging love.

Blessings on this Christmas Eve!

Rachel