We did a little "practice shot" in our house before we left:
And then we took another photo once we got there, but there were hundreds of people walking through a small section of the sidewalk, and we had to hurry since we were holding up traffic a bit. Our children were embarrassed that they had to hold the pieces of paper I'd brought along in my purse (I have no idea why). And Ethan was in a sad mood because we took away his red laser/flashlight pen that he got for Christmas (because he was shining it in his EYE). See that face?
So we waited for another break in the traffic, and I got this semi-blurry picture of my four sweeties (this time, Ethan agreed to smile so he could have some hot chocolate and gingerbread cake with the rest of us):
We try. We really do.
Our lives never turn out quite like we plan, but when I cut away all the stress, whining, and mess-making and focus strictly on the beauty, I see something amazing.
I see children who are SO excited to taste the best hot cocoa on the planet.
I see a mom who knows how blessed she is to get to be a mother.
I see the wonder of childhood--sons and daughters staring up at lights and enjoying their time together as a family. (My husband snapped this photo of us--love this very normal moment.)
And this picture is really dark, but I had to post it.
Spencer was crying because his legs were tired from all that walking. Alia offered to carry him to the car, and the moment she picked him up, he made this face (the crying stopped so quickly that we all started laughing):
Wishing you all the very best for 2013!
The Perry Family