This will be the first Christmas that Kyle and I will spend together married.  It will also be my first Christmas away from my parents.  I am filled with a sense of gratefulness to be celebrating with a man that I love so dearly.  However, I am also realizing that this will mean establishing traditions as a new Zabel family.

I have tried to do some reflecting on the traditions I had growing up that were the most meaningful. One thing that I loved was the smell of a fresh cut Christmas tree that would fill our house.  My dad and I would journey to the Christmas tree lot to select our tree and I always wanted the biggest tree. 

Kyle and I (along with some friends) recently went out in search of our first family Christmas tree. We wanted to cut it down ourselves and found a quaint Norwegian farm out in Carnation, WA to cut it down.  We both recognized with our small (730 sqft) rental space that choosing the largest tree may not be in our best interest, so we found an adorable little Noble Fir to cut down and take home!

We have put up lights on our balcony, hung stockings on the mantle, added some bright red poinsettias for color, and purchased It's a Wonderful Life and White Christmas.  Our house is feeling a bit more like Christmas.

In all this decoration and preparation, I am continuing to remember that the birth of our Savior is the reason we celebrate and oh what a wonderful reason He is.  

Immanuel: God with us. 

Merry Christmas - The Zabels