Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

38 days, 5 hours, and 5 minutes

The countdown is on to come up with a new and exciting Christmas card from the King house to yours. The problem with creative Christmas cards is that once you send one, you are forever expected to produce another one the following year. For a time, the creative juices were flowing. And for several years I had very young and very cooperative children who didn't know better. Now I have teenagers. They aren't so young and they aren't always cooperative. They aren't so willing to wear silly costumes and to be modeling some cutesy saying. This whole Christmas card thing is now a family discussion which doesn't always end well. But it will come. Eventually.

Just in case this year's card doesn't get off the ground (pun intended, you'll get it if the card idea works), let's just take a trip down memory lane.

Christmas 1996 - "Do You Hear What I Hear?"



This is an example of coming up with the card's theme after the picture was taken. I'm not sure if Andrew had ear wax or something else in his ear, or if he was adjusting his hearing aid. I do know that it gave us a perfect line to start the card. The card then talked about common sounds around the King household with a 21 month old and a 2 month old and speculated about the sounds on that first Christmas night.

You'll want to remember that this was in the days before digital cameras and photoshop but please note that no children were harmed in the photographing of this scene. And Jesse has gotten past the fact that he was a 2 month old angel. He was also a 2 month old Jesus that Christmas season but he slept through both services of that role so he doesn't even remember it.

Christmas 1997 - "Just hangin' around - waiting for Christmas"



The theme of this year's card was (you guessed it) - waiting. It's tough to wait when you're 2 1/2. It's not so easy when you're just over a year old, either. For that matter, waiting is hard for all of us, just as it has been through the ages. So this card also shared our reflections on the Israelites and how they were waiting for the Messiah. It was also through this Christmas card that we announced the expected arrival of King Kid #3: "Cindy, as well as the whole family, waits to put a face to our third child, due in May." We know of at least one person who, upon reading the heading of the card, knew that it was going to announce another child. I guess it was about that time again.

Christmas 1998 - "Wee Three Kings"



This was the first in a series of cards that took advantage of our last name. We found that organizing three kids ages 3 and under was a lot more difficult than getting two to sit. Our plans for the kids to sit nicely and pose was a major failure so we just ended up using the chaos to write about how our best-laid plans don't always work. Jesus didn't really come according to what the people were expecting, either.

Christmas 1999 - "Good Kings Come in Small Packages"



You can probably see where this one went. We talked about what a gift each child was to us and their unique personalities. We wrote about the gift of healing in Andrew's life after surgery for craniosynostosis the summer before. And we celebrated the gift of Jesus.

And yes, the kids were actually IN the boxes, even though it looks like they're holding them. Mariana is also holding an Easter PEZ dispenser and eating PEZ candies, not because it was planned that way, but because it was the only way we could get her to sit.

To be continued...

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