Sunday, January 9, 2011

Three Christmas Celebrations

This year Christmas held many celebrations for us. We were greeted with this beautiful tree (below), complete with gifts, when we visited one of our favorite churches, North Valley Baptist in California. This is home of the Thompsons, the very special family who visited us in Ukraine this past summer. We were spoiled beyond compare here... so much so that I could never begin to tell you all they did for us. Just suffice it to say that we were treated so much better than we deserve, to be sure. It is humbling to think back to our week and a half there and remember all they did for us. Thank you, North Valley!Our second Christmas celebration was held in Chapparral, New Mexico, with hubby's brother Joel and his family. We exchanged gifts here and enjoyed a mouth-watering Christmas dinner in the warmth of the winter desert (certainly a treat in itself to enjoy a short-sleeved Christmas celebration!)
Then, on to our third celebration... our actual Christmas Day celebration. What do you do when practically everyone in your family is just like you... missionaries who have no real home of their own in America?! Well, you do like we do and meet in a church! Four of the eight children from hubby's family were able to be together with their families... for a total of 25 people (16 of these children) sleeping in one church building! There was only one shower that only gave HOT water for one day. The rest of the days everyone took cold showers or "bucket-type" showers. Families were bunked out everywhere... on blow-up mattresses, in sleeping bags, on church pews... and spread throughout Sunday School classrooms for nearly a week. It was the most chaotic, memory-filled, FUN week ever! Thank you to Beacon Hill Baptist in Forney, Texas, for allowing us to invade like we did!
Stunningly beautiful tree, gifts, and stockings for the children... mostly provided by Beacon Hill
Hubby's brother Tommy and his family
Hubby's sister Sarah and her family
Hubby's sister Anna and her family
Our family
And Mom... for a total of 25 people under one roof!
Just looking at these pictures makes me laugh... there were Sloans literally everywhere!
16 of Mom's 28 grandchildren together for Christmas

My gift to hubby... an afghan that I special-ordered online that says David and Jolene Sloan, June 9, 2000, I Love You Most of All (title of a song sung at our wedding)

I do not think we will ever forget our Christmas 2010... certainly one of the most unique, seemingly unorganized, crazy, happy Christmas Days of all time! I am so blessed with the family the Lord gave me when I said "I do" ten and a half years ago!


  1. How special to be blessed with three Christmases in one year. God delights in showering His blessings upon those who love Him.

  2. Jolene, I just love the blanket. It is so amazing!!!! I bet David almost fainted when he saw that!!!

  3. I loved seeing all of the pictures from your three Christmases and all of the little Sloans everywhere and you still look adorable and tiny, Jolene. So excited for you!

  4. What a unique Christmas celebration! How cool that so many Sloan's could get together for Christmas. And the blanket! It's so pretty!

  5. Wow!! Great family shots. But the bottom line is:

    Where better to celebrate Christ's birth than in His house!


  6. great to get caught up with y'all. Praying for a safe delivery and that the Lord leads y'all through AR :)

  7. What a special time for you all! The Lord always blesses abundantly above all that we could ask or think!!

  8. What an awesome blog! I am so happy you all had such a super Christmas. Thank you for your sweet note and the picture. I do love you all and pray for you. I look forward to your next blog. I'm not that good with computers, but they do have their good points. Take care, love, MaryAnn.


Thank you for your encouraging comments! "As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country." Proverbs 25:25