As Christmas approached, I was worried that I would have a hard time enjoying the celebrations while being across the globe from our families, but much to my delight, Chris and I had a very special first Christmas together as Mr. and Mrs. Wilkins! As a friend of ours said recently, home is where you make it and Hawaii really feels like home now. God has provided an amazing "Hawaii family" for us here and we felt so blessed to share Christ's birth celebration with them this year.
We went to the Christmas Eve service at HCK on Thursday where I helped out in the nursery and then we enjoyed a Christmas play by the drama team and great sermon by our pastor Garrett.
Christmas morning we woke up nice and slow, enjoyed opening presents from each other and had a great video chat with my family while we opened our presents from them! And of course, we ate yummy cinnamon buns per the Palumbo tradition!
Chris bought me my own surfboard for Christmas so of course we had to go test it out that morning! It was a blast getting out in the surf on Christmas with our friends!
Next in the line-up was the Bike Parade & Progressive Dinner with our friends from our mini-church (homegroup) here, complete with a giant blow-up penguin and birthday hats! Also known as "Pimp my Bike 2009", we paraded around Ewa Beach with bikes decorated for Jesus' birthday and stopped in at several friends' houses for appetizers, salads, a main course and dessert. We stuffed ourselves with food and ended the night biking around the neighborhood singing carols for all to hear.
It was by far the craziest and most memorable Christmas we've had to date!
Stay tuned next time for a recap of our death-defying, fabulous backpacking trip to Kauai!