All I Want For Christmas…Is You!

dsc_3757-3Christmas is going to be fun this year. It will be Grace’s very first Christmas and Nolin is actually starting to understand the concept. He is not quite to the stage of knowing what (if anything) he wants, he just knows he wants Santa to bring him lots of presents. Apparently he is an equal opportunity gift receiver.

We will be staying in town this year, and Jenn’s family will be coming to celebrate the holidays with us. While I will miss our traditional Christmas traditions with my family, I am very excited to be able to wind down an amazing year with friends and family.

I have to say I think we received our Christmas present a little early this year. Grace’s adoption was finalized on Monday December 17th!

20121217_1055491By the time we arrived at the courthouse, it may have really just been a formality, but I am not sure I can fully describe in words what an awesome experience it is. To be able to present our family in front of the judge and have them announce that something I have known and felt since the day we met is official.

Grace is part of our family.

It was also great because we were able to share the day and experience with several other families. Some were just starting their families others were expanding, but we all shared the same joy and excitement.

20121217_220746_LLS_0Because there were so many adoptions on Monday, we did not have the time or opportunity to take a ton of pictures with family. But the judge did have a huge assortment of teddy bears for all the children, so as a good big brother, Nolin picked out one for Grace and then a polar bear for himself.

Again, the day was an awesome celebration minus one tiny little incident as we were trying to find our way out-of-town.

A police officer pulled up behind me at a stop light and then announced over an intercom that I had run a red light and would be receiving a $242 ticket in the mail…Seriously?!

She didn’t turn on her lights, or pull me over, she just announced to the entire downtown that I was a law-breaker. Jenn asked where I ran a red light and I responded I never saw one that I could have run in the 500 feet we had driven. So we turned around to try to see what could have happened.

As I came around we saw the police officer along the side of the road. We are going to clear this up once and for all. I parked the car (in a legal spot…well maybe not really, but Jenn & Teresa were in the car to help avoid a second ticket if the meter maid came) and I brought Grace with me.

20121207_222156_LLS3Now this is the part, I am not too proud of…yes I brought Grace with me. I thought who could honestly give a guy from out-of-town with a cute baby in his arms a ticket?

I probably looked strange standing by her window with a baby in my arms, so the police officer asked me if everything was ok. Well not really, you just pulled up behind me at a stop light and announced I was getting a ticket for running a stop light while I was parked.

She cut me off and laughed before I could explain any further.

You aren’t getting a ticket it was the two people riding their bicycles that rode through the intersection without stopping at the stop light.

Oh? Um, ok…thanks. I quickly tried to turn before she had time to realize my sympathy play as I turned completely red. By this time Teresa had stepped out of the car to offer her assistance, and we both laughed. Grace was still playing her role perfectly of cute innocent little girl as we headed back to the car and told Jenn what happened.

We drove the rest of the way home mindful of all traffic signs and signals and enjoyed the rest of our day as a family.

I have to say that 2012 has truly been an amazing year and I feel very blessed, but this year at Christmas, I will be laughing a little harder and smiling a little brighter because I received the best Christmas present ever…two amazing, healthy, happy children (and I guess I have a pretty amazing wife too)!

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