it's all grace

a journey with the Thomason family

Month: December 2012 (page 1 of 2)

Home For Christmas

This year we were home for Christmas. That may sound normal to you, but we’re usually flying some place and spending it with our extended family so being home is a nice change of pace.

As our little family grows it’s fun to start and/or continue traditions. One tradition Bethany grew up with was eating breakfast on the floor in the living room, beneath the tree. We have continued this the past 2 years and it’s a fun way to start Christmas day. This year we enjoyed sausage, bacon, eggs, and freshly baked cinnamon rolls! After that we broke open the stockings and started tearing into the wrapping paper. Since we have family out of state we open presents “together” over video chat which definitely saves money on airfare, but doesn’t replace actually being together in the same room. We still had fun giving and receiving gifts and our families are always very generous.

Christmas 2012

Bethany got some new everyday dishes, a few books, and some clothes. I got books, books, and more books. They are basically all I ask for so I’m stoked (more on this in another post). Titus got a bunch of toys but all he really cares about is the remote control car Nana got him. Honestly, it’s a pretty cool car so I totally understand his never-ending desire to run that thing all around the house. And finally, Avery got a real metal shopping cart (mini size), a few dolls, and of course some clothes–girls always get clothes.

We have been greatly blessed this year and it’s a great joy to celebrate the birth of Jesus. More than ever before I feel like I’ve been thinking about Christ’s death more than his birth. Christ knew his purpose and from birth he was destined for the cross. Praise God for his sovereign plan in saving us and for Christ’s humility in coming as a baby and paying for our sins on the cross!

Here’s a few photos of our Christmas day:

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012

Not enough Thomason Christmas for you? Click here for more photos.

The Craziest Christmas Party We’ll Ever Go To

One of the perks of working for a company owned by a billionaire is being invited to his mansion in Malibu to play in the snow. Yes, you read that last sentence correctly.

Today we spent the day at John Paul Dejoria’s house, owner of Paul Mitchell hair care (the company I work for). It was our second time attending this crazy event, but last year we had a brand new baby (she was just 3 weeks old) and the experience just wasn’t as much fun as this year. I’m hard pressed to try and describe all of what this party is, so here’s a few photos with some descriptions below each to try and help make sense of it all.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus standing on the snow as we walk up JPs driveway.

Christmas Party at JP's
At the top of the driveway we were greeted by huge snowflake balloons. Did I mention they were huge?

Christmas Party at JP's
Founder and owner of Paul Mitchell and Patron, John Paul Dejoria (aka: “JP”) shaking hands with friends and employees. We got to take a picture with him shortly after this photo.

Christmas Party at JP's
In-N-Out truck! #1, no onions with extra spread.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus waiting for his In-N-Out cheeseburger.

Christmas Party at JP's
Avery being cute in her stroller as we wait for our In-N-Out burgers.

Christmas Party at JP's
The family is happy as we finish our lunch and head into the party!

Christmas Party at JP's
This is JP…as a sculpture/fountain. Did I mention he is a billionaire?

Christmas Party at JP's
This is the snow hill. The Pacific Ocean is in the background just behind the huge blow up Santa. If you look to the left you’ll see the “real” Santa sitting on his “thrown of lies!”

Christmas Party at JP's
A sign pointing the way to the kid’s play area.

Christmas Party at JP's
On the way to kid’s play area is a huge dessert table thing. It was ridiculous.

Christmas Party at JP's
Another dessert table thing. Pretty sure the cotton candy on the tree was real. And the people off to the right are waiting in line for their custom screen printed t-shirts.

Christmas Party at JP's
Looking down on JP’s tennis courts which held the kid’s play area.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus enjoy some bubbles in the kids’ play area.

Christmas Party at JP's
The bubble guy trying to show Titus how to make a really big bubble.

Christmas Party at JP's

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus looking through a huge bubble.

Christmas Party at JP's
They had a race track and Titus picked the yellow car.

Christmas Party at JP's
Here comes Titus’ yellow car down the stretch.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus playing lego basketball. I didn’t know such things existed.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus playing at the lego table. Vroom!

Christmas Party at JP's
Avery puts her hand on a giant rocking horse.

Christmas Party at JP's
Titus playing with the bubbles again.

Christmas Party at JP's
A huge bubble floats by as Avery goes in for the pop.

Christmas Party at JP's
Pop!

Christmas Party at JP's
Me: “Titus stand in front of the reindeer and say ‘cheese'” Titus: “cheese.”

Dick Van Dyke
And last but not least, the celebrities. Among them, the man with the rubber legs: Dick Van Dyke. We saw him coming up the driveway as we were leaving so I went back for a paparazzi shot. To his left is Suzanne Somers in the furry hat. A few others were Ben Folds and Jesse James. You know us Thomasons, always hanging with the celebs!

A Web Pioneer’s Wild Dream

For some of you a story about a computer guy starting a Web site might sound a little dull. But this isn’t just any story. This is the story of the man who had a vision of sharing with the world the preaching ministry of John Piper through a Web site that is today known as DesiringGod.org. As of 2009, Desiring God was getting a million visits a month (which I’m sure has grown a lot in 3 years) and continues to provide almost limitless resources for free to the world. Our family has greatly benefited from their resources and we’re even currently reading a free e-book by John Piper on Advent which we have been enjoying. Watch the video below to hear about how Moe Bergeron helped start Desiring God’s Web ministry and provide resources the entire world.

One of the roles that I will take with Josiah Venture will be in the area of communications and more specifically trying to find innovative ways of using technology to reach people for Jesus Christ. In areas like Central and Eastern Europe the need for good resources and Bible training is great and the Internet continues to be a driving force to be able to get resources into people’s hands. The Church needs to continue to use these kinds of tools to spread the Good News and connect people in order to take the Gospel to every nation. Stories like Moe’s remind me that the Lord can and will use technology for His glory and I’m excited to see what the future holds.

Out of My League

Our wedding

It was just seven years ago today that Bethany walked down the aisle to a tall and teary-eyed me. It was Yakima, Washington in December and it was the perfect day. A little snow on the ground, but sunny. It was cold outside, but everything was warm inside. I was a scared twenty-one year old with really no money in my pocket, but that was the last of my worries because here came my bride arm-in-arm with her daddy. Pastor Scott joked as Bethany and her dad stopped at the front of the aisle when he said, “There’s just a lot of emotion up here right now!” We all laughed, but it was true.

I remember someone telling me, “Now Shay, you have to tell yourself in your head what you’re doing during the ceremony so you’ll remember it.” I took their advice and it helped. I told myself, “Here she comes” and “We’re saying our vows” and “I’m putting on the ring.” But that all stopped when I grabbed my guitar. I had prepared to sing a song to Bethany but all I can remember was the feeling that my legs were going to give out any second. Playing guitar and singing in front of people wasn’t the issue–I had done that before. My main problem was that I was singing to Bethany and I was out of my league… way out. With wobbly legs, a shaky voice, and the help of one of my groomsman who played the piano I somehow made it through the song and I couldn’t help but think back on that today.

The lyrics to the chorus say simply “…she’s all that I see and she’s all that I need, And I’m out of my league once again.” That was true seven years ago and it’s probably more true today: she’s out of my league. Bethany is a selfless, Christ-honoring wife that any guy would kill to have. It doesn’t take people we meet very long to begin to wonder why the heck she’s with me. Trust me, I don’t know either! We’re not even in the same league. If this was baseball she would be a first round pick on the Dodgers and I would down playing co-ed slow pitch soft-ball in the church league. But despite my deficiencies, my failures, and my silliness she continues to love me. I’m so thankful the Lord blessed me with an amazing wife. As Pastor Scott still tells me today, “Shay, you definitely over married!” He’s right. I did.

I love you, babe. I’m praying for another 7 years.

Refreshed

Shane & Shane with Phil Wickham

Thanks to my roommate from college who invited us and the graciousness of his in-laws who watched our kids, Bethany and I had the unexpected blessing of attending the Shane & Shane Christmas Tour with Phil Wickham concert right here in our own town. We’ve been blessed by the music of Shane & Shane and Phil Wickham for a long time and seeing them live was a double blessing. The concert was Christ-centered and worshipful as we sang Christmas hymns and worship songs as loud as we could. I was brought to tears a few times during the show mainly because the music was beautiful and it was refreshing to have a focused time of singing with a thousand other people.

One of the blessings of being a Christian is that we sing. We sing in our homes, in our churches, and when we gather together. We are commanded to sing (Ephesians 5:19) and we do this as an expression of worship of our great and merciful God. God has given us the gift of music to a blessing to our souls and that’s exactly what it was for us last night. The final words we sang last night were perfect. To the melody of “O Come Let Us Adore Him” our hearts and voices sang loud:

We’ll give You all the glory
We’ll give You all the glory
We’ll give You all the glory
Christ the Lord

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