Thursday, December 23, 2010

Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas, Jesus Is The Reason!

The thing I love most about Christmas is that we are celebrating the birth of Our Savior. One thing I enjoy most, during the season, is baking a birthday cake for Jesus on Christmas Eve and leaving a piece for Santa. Birthdays are a big deal in The Payne house….not as in getting a lot of gifts….but as in celebrating another year of life together. I love birthdays! This past year, I have many things to celebrate….many bright spots….here a few:

The absolute joy and blessing that my five children bring me each day….even when they are grumpy!

Addi holding a fundraiser, in honor of her brother, and raising over $2500 for Autism Speaks…..thank you for supporting her efforts.

Cal loving middle school, trying all sorts of new foods, wearing a jacket and his awesome teacher Ms. Tandy.

Drew continuing to try to save the planet and every animal on it.

Bryna dancing and singing her way through life….always with a joyful heart.

Elliot always telling me, “Mommy, You’re Fabliless (fabulous)!” and “I love you so in my heart!”

Enjoying a wonderful beach vacation and visit to our extended family in Louisiana.

Going to Game 3 of The World Series with Neil….YES THE RANGERS WON THAT ONE! Thanks Melinda and Matt for the tickets!

Play dates with our friends!

Picking blackberries at the blackberry farm!

Seeing my friend, Lisa, walk into church on July 4th holding their new foster baby girl…Maggie!

My mother moving right down the street in a few weeks!

Girl Scouts!

The surprise anniversary party that Addi threw for Neil and I….18 years!

Addi’s freckles.

A wonderful job at a wonderful preschool with the best co-workers and boss ever!

Staring at Elliot when she is really enjoying something.

Taking up an entire pew as we all 7 sit together in church on Sunday mornings.

The gift of being able to photograph so many wonderful people!

Spending a few days of Spring Break in Athens with 2 of my lifelong friends and families.

Addi being honored with “The Kindness” award in her school’s awards assembly.

Being healthy enough to start a running program and run 4 miles by the time I finished it!

Watching Bryna dance in the aisles during praise and worship.

The love, support and companionship of the greatest husband in the world.

Cal’s soulful eyes.

Drew being nominated to her school’s Hall of Fame just for being her sweet little self.

Cal’s 5th grade awards assembly and the special tribute that was made in his honor (even though I sobbed through the whole thing and cry now as I type this…it was a definite bright spot).

Singing my children songs at night.

Elliot making me laugh every single day with things she does and says!

Listening to Drew teach Bryna how to play the piano.

Eating dinner together nearly every night of the week and sharing our Roses and Thorns.

Listening to Cal sing in his room when he doesn’t know I’m listening.

Sleeping late.

Listening to my girls sing in the church choir.

Our neighbors!

My church family!

Bryna’s toothless smile.

Little hands and little feet.

Bryna winning the music award in kindergarten.

Elliot in her first dance recital….Dec. 18th!

Cal getting the gold medal in bowling at the Special Olympics.

My friend, Angie, bringing me a Starbucks every Thursday morning.

Holding hands.

Drew’s compassionate “old” soul.

Date nights!

The snow hill at Six Flags!


Watching Bryna dance….she’s amazing!

Watching Cal do the softball throw at the special olympics….he’s strong!

.Listening to Addi play xylophone and drums….she’s fantastic.

Watching Drew play soccer….she’s determined.

Listening to Elliot say the blessing at our meals….it’s priceless.

Having the best girlfriends anyone could ask for.

Having all of our needs met.

Addi and Neil going on mission trips together and helping so many who need it.

Watching my girls grow in their faith and love Jesus.

Giving back to our neighbors….near and far.

Neil being quite handy around the house!

Our “adopted” African orphans….Purity and Nanis.

My 13 year old who still enjoys spending time with her family.

My 9 year old who loves for me to tuck her in and insists on taking a family picture with her to sleepovers, so she won’t miss us too much.

My 7 year old who still sits in my lap and loves it.

My 4 year old who would rather spend the day playing with me than anything else….except maybe playing with her daddy.

My son, my sweet boy, who recently looked me in the eye and said “I love you Mom!” for the first time in his life (without being prompted)!

Jesus Christ working in my life!

Happy Birthday To The Light Of The World!

Go out and celebrate….all year long!

Lorie and The Payne Family!

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