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Monday, January 7, 2013

Happy Together

Our family was gone for two weeks during Christmas break.  It was the longest we had ever been gone at one time.  We went to Disney World (WDW), but this time, instead of flying, we decided to drive.  Driving, of course, adds several days to a trip when you're 23 hours away from your destination.  But, we're glad we drove this time.  You see lots of things when you drive - things you can't see from high up in the air.  Seeing God's beautiful creation all across several states is always a treat!

My favorite thing I was excited to see was palm trees!  This is a picture of my husband and I in Pensacola, FL, where we stayed the first night.  The Gulf of Mexico is in the background.  It was COLD that morning!
We added a special thing to our regular WDW tickets this time: Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. For this party, guests must purchase a separate park ticket.  Upon entering the "party" at Magic Kingdom, we were given special wrist bands that signified you were part of the "party". We attended the Friday, December 22, 2012, party - which was the final night of the event.  It was a lot of fun!
Party guests were served "free" hot chocolate and cookies throughout the night.  Since it was the coldest night of the trip, the hot chocolate warmed us up well!  I loved the little holly bow ties the Disney guys wore!
We rent a house, but couldn't get into the house until Saturday afternoon. A friend told us about this place.  Using our AAA membership, we got a great deal on a suite for one night.  It had a little kitchenette, three beds and a couch bed, too.  It would be a great place to stay at Kissimmee, if you're ever going that way.
We had lots of time to spare on Saturday, so we headed to Downtown Disney to look around.  It gave the kids time to go to the Christmas store there and begin picking out their yearly ornament.  I let them pick whatever they want because some day it will be theirs to take to their own homes.  The very first year I picked them out as a surprise for them.  To save space, we had the ornaments mailed to us. They should arrive this week.  Each ornament is personalized, as well.
To make the time go a little faster, my husband decided to rent a little boat for 30 minutes.  It really was a lot of fun!  Christmas music was blaring on the boat's radio and a skywriting plane was writing sweet messages about God and Jesus!  That is something that is always an inspiration when we are in Florida.  There is a skywriting plane doing that EVERY DAY!  Very, very neat!
We got to our house Saturday afternoon, went shopping for groceries, decorated a little for Christmas, and the kids enjoyed playing in the game room of the house.  
Sunday morning we drove to worship in Kissimmee and that evening we had a family worship time together.  The next Sunday we worshipped in a hotel.  It was AMAZING!  
The Orlando church of Christ sponsors the Main Gate church of Christ inside of the Baymont Inn & Suites in Kissimmee.  Each Sunday one of their elders/shepherd and one or two deacons attending the services held at the hotel. The preacher is always a guest from somewhere, who has been selected by the Orlando elders/shepherds via their website process.  The lowest attendance they had ever had was eight, I think. The highest had be 105 people, BUT on Sunday, December 30, there were 145 people there for worship!  We met people from 7 or 8 different states!  It was wonderful to worship with so many others who were vacationing,  but still took the time to worship God.  WHAT AN INSPIRATION!  What a great work the Orlando church is doing for others!
(Cinderella's Castle all lit up!)

Many years ago, I remember listening to a marriage/family seminar on tape.  It was the Breechen and Faulkner series.  Maybe you've heard them, yourself.  I remember Mr. Faulkner saying how great family vacations were - specifically he mentioned camping trips.  Mr. Faulkner was right.  Family vacations are wonderful.  You don't have to spend lots of money.  You don't have to drive to Florida.  What is important is that you spend time together.  Really together.  For our family, it takes going away somewhere to be really together.  If we stay home, there is too much to do to be together totally.  It's hard to say no to things when you're at home.  Getting away - far away - is very nice and very needed for us.

Someone teased that our 14 day trip was a lot of "together time".  I joked back that on days 10 - 14 we got on each others nerves.  That wasn't totally true, because after I thought about it, it was only days 10 and 11!!! (ha ha!).  Yes, there was one day we were tired and cranky and even tired of the togetherness.  BUT, it didn't last long and we got some rest and all was good again.  We had some GREAT conversations with our kids.  It was fun just relaxing and playing and seeing great things.  We ate some really good food - both purchased at restaurants and also prepared at our rental home.

This morning my  mind is humming the Carpenter's song, "Happy Together".  Our family time during Christmas break was just that:  A "Happy Together" time.  What great memories we'll have of Christmas Vacation 2012!!!  

Thank you, God, for the wonderful blessing of family and the time we had together during our vacation.

1 comment:

Wa Wa Waughs said...

Glad it went well and it will be a treasured time as your family changes in the future!

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