Last year on this day we shared the news with our families that we were expecting a baby. We dreamed and talked about how exciting Christmas this year would be. A baby.

I feel like you get to be a kid all over again when you have a baby. You get to go though the milestones of life for a second time, both with your mature eyes, and with the innocence and wonder of a child. I’ve always LOVED Christmas, it’s my favorite. That, and smiling – smiling’s my favorite :) <–Name that movie

So I knew that having a baby this Christmas would make it totally different and wonderful in a fresh new way.

I was driving home from my last errand yesterday, when I started thinking about the Christmas story. How many times have we heard the story of the birth?

The Birth of Jesus

2 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told. (Luke 2: 1-20)

You guys – I got tears in my eyes. How many times have I recited in my head:

6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. (Luke 2: 6-7)

know what Mary did in the barn all those years ago. It was just her and Joseph, bringing that baby into the world.  A baby that would forever change history. A son that she would watch lay down his life.

Being a Mama now, and knowing what Mary did for me – and you, it brings tears to my eyes even now as I type.

I hope you have a wonderful day and that you might see the Christmas Story fresh too.


Merfman, Merfett & Merfbaby




Everything I’ve thought about writing since last Friday seemed pointless. Several of the blogs I read observed days of blogging silence for respect of the victims. How do we go back to normal? How did something on the other side of the nation rock everyone so hard? What now?

Several members of my family are teachers. Some of them at elementary schools. I have a niece, nephew and cousin so very close in age to the little ones that were lost.

My heart hurts for those families on the other coast. Nothing I can say or write can make it better. Nothing can undo their pain and loss. So I pray.

I read this on Facebook tonight and it hit me, hard. But in a good way. In an ugly cry, it’s going to be ok kind of way.

Twas’ 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38
when 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven’s gate.
their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air.
they could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there.
they were filled with such joy, they didn’t know what to say.
they remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.
“where are we?” asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse.
“this is heaven.” declared a small boy. “we’re spending Christmas at God’s house.”
when what to their wondering eyes did appear,
but Jesus, their savior, the children gathered near.
He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same.
then He opened His arms and He called them by name.
and in that moment was joy, that only heaven can bring
those children all flew into the arms of their King
and as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace,
one small girl turned and looked at Jesus’ face.
and as if He could read all the questions she had
He gently whispered to her, “I’ll take care of mom and dad.”
then He looked down on earth, the world far below
He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe
then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,
“Let My power and presence re-enter this land!”
“may this country be delivered from the hands of fools”
“I’m taking back my nation. I’m taking back my schools!”
then He and the children stood up without a sound.
“come now my children, let me show you around.”
excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran.
all displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.
and I heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight,
“in the midst of this darkness, I AM STILL THE LIGHT.”

Written by Cameo Smith, Mt. Wolf, PA


Re(Focus) on Christmas

It’s already December 11th. Are you done with your Christmas shopping/wrapping/baking/holiday cards?

Are you tired of thinking about those things and it’s ONLY December 11th?

I read this post today by Lisa-Jo Baker and it wrecked me a little, not gonna lie. My throat tightened, my eyes stung.

Christmas is a big deal, but not for all the reasons we immediately think of.

I personally took a step back and refocused.