Kings of Christmas...

Twas EARLY Christmas morning
When tiny little voices made our room come alive!
Mommy! Daddy! Santa was HERE!!!
You could feel their grins spread from ear to ear
The cuteness really was too much to handle when Emmy exclaimed
"I think he brought us Hanukkah candles!!"

We forced them to lay still in our beds
Until I could get the energy to literally raise my head
Finally we let them run to see
All of the goodies left under the tree

Wouldn't you know even after checking that list twice
These three kids ended up on the one labeled "nice"
A giant nerf gun and a magic wand made by elves
She didn't waste any time casting some spells
Even the cats were granted their secret wish
And those "candles" turned out to be giant pick-up sticks

We paused for some breakfast - my favorite each year
Because cinnamon rolls and bacon scream "holiday cheer"
Then we sorted those gifts and each took our place
With happiness in our heart and a smile on our face

The best gifts are the ones that don't come from a store
Proving that Christmas is about so much more
Than presents and trinkets and all of the THINGS
It's about family and togetherness and the love Jesus brings

Sure new lipstick is a ton of FUN...

but the best part of the day is hugs for everyone!

New dolls are awesome art supplies, too...

but nothing compares to time with your crew!

We soaked up each moment we loved all the frills... 

(they especially loved those crisp dollar bills!)

Movies and clothes and books! Oh my!
Dolls and an Atari were a wonderful surprise!

Each gift brought love that filled up our sweet space
And nothing compares to joy on their  face!

Merry Christmas from us to each one of you...

and blessings in the New Year, too!


Christmas Countdown (3, 2, 1)...

We rounded out our Christmas Countdown with some of our favorite things...

Only 3 days until Christmas - School's Done - Kid's choice for tons of fun!

The kids had school alllll the way until the 22nd so we started off the weekend before Christmas was a few class parties! These classes know how to party - cookies, tacos, tamales, donuts, and all the sugary drinks you can imagine! But the sweetest things there that day were definitely the #Wee3Kings

And if we hadn't partied enough, Emmy headed over to a friend's house after school for a cookie decorating party and the rest of us headed across the street from THAT house to decorate some cookies of our own!

 The amount of sprinkles on that counter and floor far out numbered the amount that made it onto the cookies. 

Their kids choice item was a sushi picnic with one of their favorite movies. By the time I snapped this picture and returned to make myself a plate more than half of those rolls were gone. 

The night ended with just us girls in front of the fire while Radley went out for laser tag with a buddy from class. 

The perfect ending to a pretty near perfect day!

Only 2 days until Christmas - Pick your favorite movie, grab your Christmas jammies, let's sleep under the tree as a King family!

Favorite night of the season each and every year!

Only 1 day until Christmas - Let's bake some cookies for Santa!

Since Christmas Eve fell on a Sunday, we had Ryan home allllllll day long as an added treat to the already awesome day!

And MaMaw even got to join in the fun!

After all that cookie baking we got down to the real business of making meatballs!

After a day full of cooking and baking, they were more than ready for the big guy to come for a visit! 

Stay tuned... 


Christmas Countdown (6, 5, 4)...

Only 6 more days until Christmas... Buddy up... it's GAME NIGHT!

Emersyn and Anna have art on Tuesday afternoons so we have been able to see the Munsons lots and lots during the week this fall. We all love it - especially the kiddos, so it was only fitting that we made them part of our Christmas countdown fun! We pregamed with some day-before-winter snowcones and I have to admit, I love that all 6 were in red. #notevenplanned

They picked out games, buddy-upped and it was GAME ON!

Caroline and Radley won 3 games
Emmy and Anna won 1 game
Landry and Millie won 1 game (and truth: I rigged it because they were so pitifully sad that they kept losing). 

The big winners got... NOTHING!


Merry Christmas from these Royal Hot Messes!

(The end of the night is always sad because we won't see them for a whole week!)

Only 5 days until Christmas - Let's grab some dinner and go shopping for someone special
(Don't tell Daddy!)

We had the most fun afternoon starting with play dates for the girls. Landry's first time to have a friend over to our house and she was in heaven. I wish you could bottle up the giggles of kindergarten girls - there is just something so sweet about it. Everything is funny or silly or awesome. They are so encouraging to each other "Oh that looks so pretty, Landry... I love the way you did that Ev-a-wyn (Eveyln)" .... just.the.BEST!

Emmy's friend, Hudsyn, got to come over too (and Radley headed straight to the neighbors). From Barbies to school to painting some canvases - they all packed a TON in their two hours. 

We had planned a fancy dinner out (HAHAHA - kidding, we went to McAlister's for $.99 kid meals) and they convinced three more families to come with us! So I don't have one picture of all the amazingly awesome things that they picked out for Ryan... but we had the best night out on that 5th day before Christmas! 

Only 4 days until Christmas - Now that we have all those presents, let's do some wrapping!

One of my most favorite things to do in the whole wide world is wrap gifts. I love it so much that every year I consider doing a little side gig and wrapping gifts for people and then I don't because who doesn't love to wrap gifts?!? 

It's actually pretty hard for me to "let go" and let them wrap but they did the majority of this allllll by themselves. I instructed them on where to cut so we wouldn't waste a bunch of paper, but they got those gifts all wrapped up and ready for Christmas morning!

Only three days to go.... 


Blessings beyond bags...

I love blogging for lots of reasons. I love that I have a record of our lives. I love that I get a creative outlet. I love that sometimes my words (hopefully) bring joy or light or hope or laughter to people's lives. And I really love that this world has brought some amazing women into my life. 

Women that show up. Women that say yes. Women that inspire me.  Women that lead by example. 

Last year Holly and her friend, Michelle, discovered that a program that provides 1500 families with meals at the holidays was no longer being sponsored. So they did what any normal person would do and ordered food for those families on nothing more than faith. Well that faith, this community, the power of prayer and His provision sponsored those families so the did what any normal person would do... and did it again this year. 

For weeks leading up to the big packing day they lead a charge to get families sponsored. Our community showed up... Little by little, donation by donation, sponsor by sponsor - they met their goal of 1500 families. 

Packing day finally arrived and We5Kings showed up to help because here's the thing about service. You are never too young. You are never too old. You are never "too" anything at all. We can each do our part... because no matter how small they all add up to one great impact. Whether you donate $1000 or help breakdown boxes - every single thing done to serve others matters. 

One of my greatest joys is serving with them and one of my greatest prayers is that they feel the same. 

Days like this allow you to get a glimpse into what matters. 3000 empty bags lined up on the walls. Dozens of tables filled with food waiting to be sorted. People from all different backgrounds ready to help. 

Friends to serve along with... 

and offer you hugs and support in between. 

The other amazing thing about these women I've met? Their kiddos are pretty awesome, too. Shelly and Holly have big boys (that are also giants). These "kids" have put in more volunteer hours than most adults. I LOVE that my kids, especially Radley, see these "kids" giving back. I love that they see them making a difference. I really love that they always find time to have a little fun while they're doing it. (So Holly and Shelly, go hug those big kids for me!)

This crew was there from the first bag to the last.... 5 hours, 3000 bags, 1500 families... One incredible day. 

Those bags are surely filled with blessings... but those blessings will be felt far beyond anything those bags hold. 

Proud of you. Thanks for letting me in and giving me one more amazing friend to look up to and admire!