Post Christmas Photos

The Sturm household was definitely decked for Christmas this year. We had a Christmas tree in every room, with a total of 6 trees. One full size and 5 miniatures.
It was a lot of fun because Brody really got into opening presents this year. Most of the time before he even saw what was in the box he would say, "Oooooh wooooow, I love it!" He got a new big wheel called the Twist Trike which I highly recommend. It changes from trike to big wheel quickly and easily. Brody absolutely loves it and cruises up and down the side walk. He also got a new drum set which is really fun. We haven't moved it into his room yet, but we'll see what happens when we do.

My awesome wife got me a guitar for Christmas. I've told her through dating and marriage that I wish I knew how to play guitar, so she bought one to encourage me to really do it. She is my biggest encourager and supporter.

Eyes of a Child

We live in an older neighborhood in Santa Barbara and we love it. But, for whatever reason many of our neighbors don't seem to have a problem with littering. I'm constantly picking up trash around our house, street, and neighborhood.

Just before it got dark yesterday Brody and I went to our neighborhood park about two blocks away. I was so irritated when we got there because there were bottles, cups, and cans around the park. There are 3 trash and recycle cans within 100 feet of the park in every direction. As I was pushing Brody on the swing I picked up some of the trash between pushes. I then had this conversation.

Brody: "What you doin' dada?"
Me: "Pickin' up trash Bubba. It makes me sad when people litter."
Brody: "There's a cup dada! And there! And another one!"
Me: "I know Brody, but some of those cups are covered in gross and I don't have a bag for them."
Brody: "Okay dada"
Brody: "I want to swing faster dada." (which means higher)
Me: "Okay, hold on tight." (Brody is now swinging as high as I dare push him)
Brody: Looking up at the sky as he swings, "Dada it's real beautiful out here!"
Me: "It is?"
Brody: "Yeah! The wind makes my breath feel better. Take a real deep breath, Dada!"

As I took a deep breath I looked up and noticed the pink sunset Brody saw as he swung forward and looked at the sky. I then realized that Brody didn't see the trash on the playground. He saw swings, sand, slides, and things to climb on. He was there with daddy, there was a cool wind on his face from swinging, and the sky was a pretty color. What could be better. My irritation melted away as this 2 year old taught me that you can either see trash or beauty.

It is easy to see trash when that is your focus. Brody taught me that it's easy to see beauty when that is your focus.

Brody's view of the sky.

Jammies Party!

Chrystal had this great idea to have a kids jammies party for Christmas. We invited a bunch of kids (and their parents) over to decorate cookies, do a craft, and have some food. The caveat was you had to come dressed in your jammies. All the kids got to eat Candy Canes and cookies before dinner, which went over well. We had four 2 year olds, a 5 year old, and a 5 month old. Lot's of chaos and great fun! Brody was bouncing off the walls at 9:00 pm, so he had fun, too!

Thanks sweetie for being such a great mommy and so creative. And thanks to all our friends that came over."I am crazy plate head boy, gimme some candy!"

"My hand tastes like cookies! Wanna lick!""If you knew I was going to jump from here, you wouldn't be sitting there holding that camera."
"Chug, chug, chug! Quick before they realize this has sugar in it, too."

Somebody Stole Baby Jesus!

We took Brody to the Santa Barbara Mission to see the Nativity yesterday. I was disappointed, though not surprised, to find that someone had stolen baby Jesus from the manger. Brody was pretty disappointed as well, which was really cute. "Somebody took baby Jesus?", he kept asking.
I can't help but make an analogy to how society in general has taken Jesus out of Christmas, just like some sad person stole baby Jesus out of the manger. He is the Reason for the Season!