Ahhhh! Santa made it!
Shayla with her awesome daddy on Christmas morning!
This lovely gift moved me to tears. Sent by a sweet, sweet "Christi Fan" from Florida, it says, "Once upon a time, there lived a beautiful princess". Christi's ballet picture is placed inside. It's gorgeous and Shayne will soon put it up for me.
OK, now this is TOTALLY FREAKY, but notice the "orb" above my head on this photo! There weren't many "orbs" in our Christmas pictures at all, but the fact that one showed up here took my breath away when I saw it. Would Christi's spirit show up while I'm holding her picture? It sounds so "Christi like".
Shayla sewed a little shirt and bow on one of her stuffed bears for my gift. I love it!
Christi's cats (Buttercup & Buckeye) got in on the Christmas gift opening action.
Shay with Lisa's gift, absolutey awesome! The scrapbook is incredibly well done - so detailed and gorgeous. Contained in it are picture of the girls. After going through it again last night, Shayla started telling more about the pictures and what she was thinking or what she remembered. It was precious!
Shayla had a lovely Christmas, exactly as we hoped it would be for her! I won't say we made it through without tears, we cried a bit while opening gifts, and I noticed Shayne "disappeared" and went downstairs to clean the basement for a while, but I guess that just reminds us how lucky we were to have been given that most precious gift of Christi's life. We wanted to do something different so Shayne suggested taking a hike. It was 22 degrees so we just bundled up and went for a great walk.
(PIC: Crossing the raging water. I don't look scared in this photo, but I really was! As we neared the end of our hike, the only way to get through - short of walking all the way back around the lake/marsh (about 45 very cold minutes) was to go over this water area where the water was flowing from a higher point to a lower one at a pretty good clip. Yikes! I knew the safest thing to do was to turn back, but we were oh so cold so I gave Shayne my camera to hold (knowing I was going to fall for certain) and thankfully made it across. What a hoot!
We also decided it would be "different" to take in a movie on Christmas, something we'd never done before. Shayla talked on and on about wanting to see "Marley & Me" so I hurried up and finished reading the book so we could go, but, then, she changed her mind and wanted to see a different movie. ("Smile and nod, mom, just smile and nod," is what I could hear Christi's little voice saying. That was one of her sayings, I think perhaps from the Lion King.) We saw "Bedtime Stories" and it was a great movie!
(PIC: Our Family of Four! Shayne playing Santa for the bank Christmas party with Shayla "baking" in my tummy. Christmas 1998)I'm anxious to put all of the Christmas decorations away today because it pains me to look at many of them. Hopefully next year won't be so hard. This year really was better. It's just all so sad and so odd - eight Christmases WITH Christi, three Christmases without. Three years? Oh, that pulls my heart. I need to move on.