This post is coming quite late, but I still wanted to share it with you...
For the past few years, it has been my joy to host a Christmas party for our South Bay staff family. Andy said it well when he told our staff, "Stacie expresses love through acts of service. So every bow that's been tied and ribbon that's been glued is an expression of how much she loves each of you." That is truly how I feel. Do not let these pictures deceive you; I am so NOT a crafty person. I don't even enjoy it and would never do it in my "free time" as a hobby. But there is ONE occasion that makes me want to bust out a hot glue gun... when I'm doing something to show love to someone else.
Words could never express how deeply I love our staff. We have been through so much together. I watch them as they dream dreams, work diligently, serve wholeheartedly, lead with integrity, and love Jesus from the core of who they are. They are each passionate about leading people to say yes to Jesus and passionate that their area of ministry will be done with excellence. We are a team. We are a family.
As I glued peppermints and cut ribbon, I said prayers for each of their lives. During this season of my homeschooling-full-time-mommy life, I don't get to rub shoulders with them throughout the week as much as I'd like. But I want them each to know that I am fiercely loyal to them and so thankful for each of their families.
I got the idea for the table decor from this website. There is even a tutorial for
how to make the placemats and the center piece. I tried to stick with a peppermint theme.
Name flags courtesy of Sanli
Our dinner was catered by Caterman Catering and I was extremely
pleased with their service, display, and the food!
They even did a kids' bar of chicken nuggets and mac & cheese, much to my boys'
delight. The adults, on the other hand, enjoyed much more sophisticated food than that!
Inspiration for the dessert table came from this website.
Candy cane shaped brownies with peppermint patties mixed into the batter.
These were surprisingly tedious to cut out and probably would have looked better
if they had been iced with red and white icing (but ya gotta draw the line somewhere).
As they were, I thought it kinda looked like a plate full of 7's. Andy assured me
that you could tell they were supposed to be candy canes!
Now THIS was divine!!! White Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cheesecake.
So good. I found the recipe here.
These adorable cupcakes were baked by my fabulous friend, Gennie. Too cute!
Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark
(for all you non-Bay Area folk, did you know Ghirardelli chocolate originated here?)
Brad, Laura, Ella, Kendall, David, & Tim
(we included our advisory team this year as well)
Tina, Filipe, Lily, Cailyn, Mandy, (Efraim- can't see him), Archie, & Rebekah
Cindy, Alan, David, Karl, Connor, Vivian, Renan, & Juliane
Jarrin, Trevor, Tony, Sanli, Jennalene, Lucy, Liam (sleeping in the stroller!), & Jack
Sammy, Andy, Jerry, Adrienne, Teagan, Stacy, & Caedmon
This year our gift exchange had the theme of "home accessories".
David was pretty stoked about his quesadilla maker! :-)
No, Ella was not one of the gifts we were exchanging. :-)
Highlight of the night: when Andy was sharing with the kids
what a valuable part of the South Bay team they are...
...and then watching them tear into their presents! Loved that.
Our big family photo!