If I can’t have snow, give me sand!

I’ve been so busy over the last two weeks that I’m trying to hurry and catch up!

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas, filled with relaxation, delicious food and lots of love!

This is the first Christmas away from my family, so I was definitely sad to not join in our Christmas traditions. But the beaches and golf courses in San Diego isn’t anything to be sad about, no matter the time of year!

Christmas Eve we drove to Lake Forest, CA to hear the most AMAZING preacher, Rick Warren. I’ve written multiple posts about how Rick Warren has changed my life, so it was such a blessing to hear him in person on Christmas Eve!


Driving through Saddleback was like driving on a college campus. But navigating was pretty easy because we pretty much just followed traffic.


 Before I got out of the car I had to remind myself that I was going to church, not a concert. I couldn’t go crazy wild and scream when Pastor Rick came out on stage, and I couldn’t cheer for an encore afterwards. Turns out that both of those things required all of my self control.

Walking up to the worship center we saw that the kids had a play area with fake snow and sledding. 


With Christmas lights everywhere, we walked up to the worship center, which was beautifully decorated. 


I nearly hyperventilated as I walked into the worship center. It was really big, seating 1,900 people.



The service began and worship was beautiful, bringing tears to my eyes multiple times. 



Then…


Pastor Rick came out! I grabbed my husband’s knee and squealed, as I again reminded myself that I couldn’t act like I as at a concert. You’d judge me if I posted all of the iPhone burst shots I took of him.


His message was perfect, as always. 



At the end, the worship team came back out as we sang Silent Night, which is my favorite Christmas song! Then I noticed Pastor Rick pointed to the big window at the side of the sanctuary, so I glanced over and noticed they had fake snow falling outside the building… so precious 🙂



I may or may not have cried when it was over.


Since it was Christmas Eve we couldn’t find a place to eat… until we came across the California staple.


In-N-Out Burger. We have one about 3 miles from where I live, but when in Cali…


Since we were traveling and staying at a hotel, I mentioned to the hubs that this would be my first Christmas without a tree on Christmas morning. But Christmas morning I woke up to my present under the tree.


Seriously, how sweet is he? 


I FaceTimed with my family, 



then drank my annual Starbucks in front of the fireplace (ahem… TV).


The hubs gave me the BEST photo album of my marathon photos! I definitely cried when I opened this.


Then drank mimosas while watching “It’s a Wonderful Life,” my all-time favorite Christmas movie.


I may have sent my Christmas card out a little late this year…


Then we headed to a nearby golf course.


It may have been Southern California, but it was COLD and I only lasted 6 holes, so I became the official photographer of the round.


It was SUPER cold as the sun began to set, but God painted a beautiful sunset.


This is the view of the ocean from the golf course.


Then we had dinner at a restaurant on the resort’s property.


It was a Christmas to remember, that’s for sure! I felt so blessed, especially being able to see Rick Warren speak in person. When I was first diagnosed with MS I started to think of all the things I hoped to accomplish while I was still in good health. Hearing Rick speak was one of them. I feel so blessed.

I hope your Christmas was as blessed as mine!

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