It sure is different spending Christmas swimming and water skiing at a lake rather than sledding and drinking hot cocoa. It doesn't feel very "christmassy", but we had a good time. The kids loved swimming and we were visited by a gigantic scorpion, spider, and even a hippo. We did have a present exchange and we sang Christmas carols in the tent at night. On Christmas Eve, we went to Muembe to visit Mateus' family and bring them gifts. It was a great time of fellowship and giving. On Christmas day, we stayed home with our family, ate cinnamon rolls and opened presents that grandma and grandpa, aunts and uncles, and a very generous church sent. The kids slept out under the christmas tree the night before and were up by 5:45am to open presents! The day was cool and rainy, so we pretended it was snowing outside and cuddled up in our pajamas and listened to Christmas music.
So our first Christmas away from home, was difficult, but it was also very good. We started new family traditions and were able to enjoy the opportunity to give to very needy people. We are ever grateful for the gift of Jesus so long ago and that no matter where we may be spending Christmas, we can celebrate HIM.