New Holiday Traditions

Merry Christmas from the Joneses!
We're trying something new this year: Christmas by ourselves! We won't be making the traditional trek back to Columbus for many different reasons. Am I sad? Yes! But am I excited to spend Christmas with my man alone for the first time ever? A million times Yes! One of the reasons why we won't be making our journey north is because of everything that is going on here in Charlotte. I'm sure most of you can relate to crazy Christmases, maybe even 3 or 4 in one day. What Travis and I need is a relaxing Christmas where we can focus and seek God's guidance in this next big step. Beginning in January we will transition into the role of being the point leaders of the Albemarle Community which will hopefully be followed by us moving into one the apartments there. So heading back home for the holidays is just not an option for us if we want to focus on the responsibilities and the move ahead of us in less than a month. We will miss our families tremendously but we know we need to take time for ourselves this year. I'm pretty excited about experimenting with new traditions; maybe pancakes on Christmas morning, spending most of the day in our footie pjs, and reflecting on the joy, peace, and love our Emmanuel has brought to the World!

(I won't admit just yet though that I'll miss the white stuff on the ground, ask me Christmas morning and I may change my mind :)


While We Were Gone

So life didn't stop when we left for our 2 week vacation trip--wish it did though so we wouldn't have missed all the great things that happened while we were gone! Here are just a few things that took place:

1. Soccer practices, tutoring, and bible studies went on as usual. However, the Woodbridge Albemarle Community is now practicing at a field close by instead of the tennis courts. The kids have been really receptive to this change and enjoyed going somewhere other than their own "turf" for practice. 

2. Two Thanksgivings took place in two neighborhoods! Along with the Urban Eagles, there were three other ministries, including the church Travis and I are attending, that came to Birchcroft to put on a Thanksgiving meal on November 19th. Canned goods and prayers were given at every door and a potluck of Thanksgiving deliciousness was outside for everyone to enjoy. The Tuesday before Thanksgiving Grier Heights had their meal and moms were making their best Thanksgiving dishes and girls were putting on a dance performance for everybody. A community came together to share in the praises of the past year and families became one as they celebrated what God has done for them. I so wish we could have been a part of both these wonderful celebrations!

Grier Heights: not on Thanksgiving but a few weeks before--gives you an idea of what it was like :)
Birchcroft: Mom & David
Birchcroft: waiting for a delicious meal 
Birchcroft: enjoying a delicious meal