Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas 07

I think this picture captures Christmas 07 perfectly!

On Christmas Eve, Katie, Kim, Amy, Brad, and I built a palette on the floor of Brad's apartment. We had every intention of watching "It's A Wonderful Life", but you know us... we just talk and talk instead. Amy begged to open presents just like all normal kids. (So cute!) We did look at pictures of Katie's hometown in Christmas lights. Katie gave me some new pjs. (What a great tradition!) Then we all fell asleep side by side.

On Christmas morning, we woke up and opened stockings. Everyone got homemade stationary and bagels! Then we sat down to a delicious breakfast on the palette. About 9am we started opening gifts and did not stop until 2pm! It was not because we all went overboard shopping, but rather each gift was thoughtful.

From Katie and Kim, I got a new lamp for reading in my bedroom. They also are getting my IPOD fixed which has been broken since leaving to come to China the first time. (Major props for remembering this!!!) Kim gave me some yummy brownie mix and Katie gave me some kid art. (Post more on that later...)

Brad and Amy's gift had me rolling in the floor literally. They made me a choose-your-own-adventure book based on my life in the future. Options included opening a bakery here in Yichang, opening a "Bread and Breakfast" and having 12 children none of which had the name Kermit. They are pretty witty people.

While at home this summer, I fell in love with the Plain White T's song "Hey There Delilah". (Thanks Caitlin who would sing at the tops of her lungs with me!!!) Sometime I made the comment that all I wanted for Christmas was for Brad to learn to play this on the guitar. (This was when we first got here mind you...) Well, he did better than that. Amy and Brad wrote a song called "Hey There Beth Quarles"!! Not only did they write it, but they went to a recording studio with Kim and made me a CD. Brad played guitar and all three of them sang. I laughed because it was so funny. But it also made me cry because it was just so thoughtful. What great friends I have!!!!

Other great gifts included:Frosty Friends and China ornament, potholder and books from Mom, organizer and pot holders from Nana, potholder from Aunt Nancy (seeing the theme?), stationary and notebook from the Smiths, and a letter delivered on Christmas Day from Aunt Sue. Thanks everybody!

After unwrapping presents, we watched half of "It's A Wonderful Life" before dinner. We met up with many of our Family and friends here at our beloved UpDown Dining Hall. After a nice Chinese Christmas feast, we came back to Brad's to sing, share Christmas story and play White Elephant. I think I got the best gift at the party. I won a martial arts show from Chen Tao's boyfriend.

This post cannot do Christmas Day justice at all. Other than the fact that I missed my family in the States, it was beyond perfect.

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