In both 2011 and 2012, I had been in charge of the Christmas party as the Relief Society President. I worked very hard to be in charge of something else in 2013, and the Bishop generously put us in charge of Halloween. I was thrilled. Then I moved.
In the new ward, Tyler and I were immediately called as Ward Activity Specialists. I was excited, but that meant that I was, yet again, in charge of Christmas. (Thank you karma.) Clearly I had not learned what I needed to the previous two years. Luckily, we had a great group of people helping us, and the Second Counselor in the bishopric was more support that we could have asked for.
I think it turned out great, although I have no other ward functions with which to compare from this current neighborhood. We did a breakfast, and everyone brought cinnamon rolls. Simple. The decorations were black tablecloths with poinsettias and Hershey kisses. Simple.
Our 'theme' was Christmas Around the World. We had fantastic people help prepare five rooms that everyone visited in turn. There was Scandinavia, Latin America, France, Germany, and America. Tyler made passports, and as people visited a country (room) they would get a stamp in their passport. This activity was so fun, but it only worked because there were so many wonderful, culturally savvy people in the ward willing to share their time. All the rooms were fantastic. (I forgot to take pictures. Typical.)
In the overflow by the cultural hall, I put up nativities donated by the ward.
Visitors could go view them at any time during breakfast or after. There were so many fun ones from all over the world. My favorite was a stained glass set. It has been a long time since I have done any stained glass, but if I ever busted out the old tools, that would be a worthy goal.
We also came back together at the end to sing, but that might have been overkill. I think people were a bit tired and ready to go home. But the singing was beautiful and gave the event nice closure.
The funniest part was that the Sunday after the party, they released both Tyler and myself. Guess they didn't like the Christmas party as much as we thought. I know, I know...they had other callings in mind for us, but it sure seemed like great timing. (Tyler is currently serving as the first counselor in the Young Men and I am serving as second counselor in the Primary.)
And to wrap up all things Christmasy, here are a couple pictures of the Houck's. We had Christmas with them early because they were visiting family on the 25th. We had exchanged names, so they received presents from June and Daisy.
I love how Buckwheat is sitting up on the couch in that last one. Moxy is always so jealous that Buckwheat gets to be on the furniture. Truth: I give preferential treatment to dogs that don't shed.
The Houck's are actually on their way out from our abode. They enjoyed their time here, but have moved forward to the next stage of life, namely a place where they don't have to share a kitchen or be awakened at 6:45 am by piano playing. We wish them the best of luck and will miss them quite a bit.
On the plus side, we will have the house all to ourselves for the first time. I think Tyler and I have almost forgotten how to walk around in our underwear. It shouldn't take us long to relearn our old habits.