JOSH WITH AUNT MELA -1996
A MODEL IN THE MAKING!
SOME MALE BONDING WITH UNCLE JOHNNY
JOSH & SHANE, CHRISTMAS 2001
RON & ELLIE KENNEDY, RIFFE'S, RIOSES, AUNT DONNA KENNEDY
DOESN'T JOSH MAKE A GREAT COWBOY?
A SWEET GIFT FROM UNCLE JOHNNY!
SHANE & JOSH WITH THE LEONARD "GIRLS" AT A MOTHER/DAUGHTER LUNCHEON (The 'cowboys' served the 'cowgirls'that day!) You must click and enlarge this one to see how much the kids have changed!
Geeze! If you read the comments of Amber and Kim, you would think that I never blog!! J/K! I have been wanting to write about my wonderful Christmas week, but---I have the same excuses as all of you. Busy, busy, busy but in a good kind of way. And, where should I begin? Well, Shane and I took Aunt Tommy to Sun City on Friday afternoon and I wrote about going to the Leonard's home Friday night. What a blast! Then Saturday, I had wrapping and a little grocery shopping to do. Agustin went with me or I wouldn't have made it! Josh surprised us and showed up with church clothes and suitcase in tow. He spent Saturday and Sunday nights with us. Preparations were made for Sunday's meal and gifts that were to be delivered to folks at church were set ready by the front door.
We had a wonderful service Sunday morning with Pastor Naill making us laugh and cry as usual. He is so cool! And I felt so proud sitting next to my "guapo" son! Everyone was in their Sunday best and of course, most ladies had on festive holiday clothing! And I wore my beautiful earrings which Shane had practically forced me to open before church. You see, they were his gift to me and he was so proud! He had spent his own money and picked them out. Everyone loved them and it was so worth opening them early just to see his sweet face beaming! We were all blessed to be able to hear Amber sing in a mixed trio, "Mary, Did You Know?". Amber had the first verse as a solo. I had goosebumps. I wish all who read this could hear her sing! Then my eyes wandered over to the Howard family. I knew Pat was feeling those proud mama feelings as much as I; for with her and her hubby sat two handsome sons and two beautiful daughters and one son's pretty girlfriend! Her sons know Josh from "back in the day" when they would go to summer youth camp together.
But I must say; the best part of the service was the invitation. I had noticed a young man sitting across the aisle from us. He was red headed and wore work boots. He reminded me so much of my brother! I remember thinking, "I wonder if he is saved. I haven't seen him here before." Well, guess what? He went forward at invitation to get the assurance of his salvation. He had made a profession before and was unsure. But people, hold on, that isn't the best part! A young lady sitting in a different section of the sanctuary had also gone forward. While our pastor's wife was dealing with her concerning her salvation, the young lady looked up and got super emotional. Dina asked her what was wrong. "That's my brother who just came forward over there!" was her reply. WOW! Pastor was really choked up as he tried to explain all this to us after the close of invitation. There also was a young boy baptized Sunday morning, and of course, everyone was in the Christmas Spirit. (Which we should be in 365 days a year!)
Sunday for lunch, the guys wanted pizza and I shouted a hearty "AMEN!" I knew we would be cooking and having a big meal in the evening, so I did not want to prepare a lunch! Then there were the usual naps and watching football.
Back to church for the evening service which Pastor had promised he would keep short. He did something he had never done before and I think it went greatly. He had all the children come sit with him on the platform as he read the Christmas story from Luke. He asked questions and interacted with the children. It was a really sweet time! My mom and dad joined us for church. After service, we hung around to take lots of photos. The sanctuary was decorated so beautifully and just set the scene as the place to have them taken. We also thought it would be neat to have someone there available to snap some pictures of all the Leonards, Riffe's and Rioses since our history goes way back! Wouldn't it have been ever so awesome if the Vernoys had been there too?!? We asked the Leonards to join us for supper back at the house. I am so happy they accepted! I thought they would never go home though! (Oh - I am so really just kidding!) They left around 1:30 am and when we were at their home Friday night, we left at 3:00 am -- so look who is talking here! This time, we had my parents and brother in the mix as well. A wild game of UNO took place in the front living room while Amber kicked it into high gear in the kitchen helping Agustin assemble the chicken enchiladas. I lit candles, set up drinks, odds and ends. I will be sure to post photos soon of all the goings ons!
I will have to post photos of Christmas gifts later as well, because SOMEONE did not get me that photo printer I wanted so badly! So that means I still have to go to CVS and have my photos put on a CD!!! In reality, I am so thankful for the many wonderful gifts I did recieve! The best being that I had Family and dear Friends around most of the week; oh and LOTS of yummy food! I also had lots of pain, but I don't want to dwell on that right now. Thanks to Pat and others for your prayers. I will write more about my gifts when I get my photos to include ok? So here are some old photos to suffice my "critics"! (giggle, giggle)
JOSH WITH HIS COUSIN JACKIE/Easter of 2002!