We had a great Christmas. I attended Christmas Eve candlelight service at Central, and it was absolutely beautiful.

On Christmas morning, I took homemade cinnamon rolls over to Daryl & Gisele’s for breakfast and watched everyone open their gifts. Mom was really pleased with her Tivo, and Daryl will get it set up in the next couple of days for her. Robin and Ken arrived at noon, and we came to my house. Steven was sick and running a little fever so we decided not to go to Brian and Carrie’s that day. We opened gifts, had soup for dinner and rented a movie in the evening.

On the 26th, Steven was still sick and running a little fever, but we decided to go to B&C’s anyway, and just try to keep him separated from the rest of the kids. Lauren still is at risk when exposed to sicknesses. She has her immune system, but not her immunities. That means she takes longer to get over things, and it sets her back on her therapy progress. So they try to avoid illnesses as much as possible. It was hard to keep them all separated, but worth it. Brian and Carrie had bought a 16 pound prime rib and it just wouldn’t wait another day. We could all hear it calling!

We had 19 people there, a delicious dinner, a fun time with gifts, and two chocolate pies left at my house. That’s right, I conveniently “forgot” to take them over, so we just ate the Marie Callendar’s ones that Roland and Susan brought, and Ken, Robin, Megan and I had chocolate pie when we got home. :) We’re planning to take Mom a piece today because she was soooo disappointed.

Pictures are posted here. Hope you all had as great a celebration as we all did.

I have a friend at Intel named Patty. She and I became friends several years ago when we worked together in Corporate Security. We were both going through divorces and I felt like she was a kindred spirit during a difficult season in my life. We both have moved on to new jobs, but remain friends, sending emails and IMs back and forth, having lunch together several times a year, and always taking each other out on our birthdays. A few months ago, we were again brought to a kindred place in our lives. We were having one of our lunches, and she shared with me that her daughter was expecting a baby, and that they had just found out that week the baby had a genetic disorder called Osteogenesis Imperfecta, which is a form of brittle bone disease. There are four types, and he had the worst one. Ultrasounds showed he already had multiple bone fractures. The prognosis was that he would probably not survive birth. During the birth process, the pressure of the birth canal crushes the fragile ribs and skull which is what leads to death.

Patty’s daughter, Shawna, decided not to terminate the pregnancy. Even knowing that there was virtually no hope of his survival, she knew the choice was not hers, but God’s. Her due date was today, December 18. Yesterday morning at 6:20, little Kelvon was born. He survived only 25 minutes. But that short time was a gift, as Shawna, Austin and all the grandparents got to hold him and kiss him and say good-bye.

No life is without purpose and Kelvon’s short one has made a difference. They are drawn closer to God and closer to one another through this baby’s existence. They have deeper understanding and compassion for other families who are dealing with special needs children. And they have a new hope of seeing this little boy again some day. If you are so inclined, say a prayer for this family as they grieve and heal.

I was in the middle of writing my Christmas letter when my hard drive crashed. I do mean “CRASHED”. I was afraid I had lost everything, but Daryl used a couple of programs and was able to recover most of my important stuff. The biggest success was finding, recovering and re-importing my Thunderbird address list. There were several corrupted segments on my drive, but we were able to piece together most of the files to get me going on my new drive. It’s been a couple of days, but I am up and running again. (I have been doing webmail since Thursday on my work laptop that I bring home. But it’s just not the same!)

I put up some outside Christmas lights today, and I’m quite proud of myself. It’s the first time since Roland’s been gone that I have done this. I just did a string across the eaves and around the arches, but I feel festive! Now I have to finish decorating my tree and then baking time will be upon me.

Tomorrow is Carrie’s birthday and I’m taking dinner and cake out to them. They are still so deep in unpacking that they didn’t want to stop long enough to drive to my house. So happy birthday, Carrie. And happy birthday, Don, on Monday.

By the way, I’m going to see “Narnia” tomorrow morning. Anyone else seen it yet?

The Reeds have been moving into their new house over the last week. Everything is in chaos, but you can see furniture and appliances. Click here. The kids were sleeping, so I didn’t get pictures of their rooms.

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