So This Is Christmas?

As I noted last week, this year I won't be spending Christmas in the mountains with my extended family for the first time in 13 years, which feels a bit strange. I'm still super excited about Christmas though (duh), and pretty thankful for these people I get to call family. The following is a selection of emails excerpted from the chain of 23 messages sent between me, my four siblings, six cousins, and our nine respective spouses last Thursday and Friday. We range in age from 20 to 33.


Guys. I'm looking for some more blog fodder for next week. Can you help me out?

I know there's a deep hole of sadness in my soul about missing Crooked Creek Christmas, but I say that's no reason to stop us from having a hilarious fun email exchange for the next 24 hours or so, right?

In case you need some inspiration, here's the post from last Christmas.

Love to all of you!


I'm all in, but we need someone with the uncanny combination of wit and immaturity (a la Caleb or Scott) to get this party started. 


Did I just answer my own invitation?  Minus the wit part?


What I learned from reading that blog post is that I'm the funniest one of us all, and that I may have over estimated my dancing skills. However, I have been training with a strict regimen of drinking beer on the couch and visualizing myself executing sweet dance moves. I'm a grade A twerker.


*fart noise*


BOOM! Dann is bringing the heat.


Wit and .... something else, I tell you!  Wit and ... something else!


This oughta help. 


Dang it Scott! That video is one of my Friday links! Now Calee won't be surprised!


Scott. Always ruining other people's things. Like surprises.


A hamburger and a bag of fries walk into a bar, and the bartender says:




"Sorry. We don't serve food here."


Two drums and a cymbal fell off a cliff:




Ba dum ttsshhhhhh


Two members of the Loyd/Walters/Stockton/LoMurray/Nothwehr/Shrock family walk into a bar....




Everyone else runs out because they know a bad joke is coming.

You know who you are.

Calee Schrock:

You think it's ok to spell our last name wrong just because we are in Jamaica??

Not cool. 

We be jammin'.


What is Christmas even like in Jamaica?


Like this:


Dann, I'm impressed

we be xmas jammin



Nothing could have possibly made my day any better than picturing Troy jamming to Toni Braxton & Shaggy on the beach. Well maybe nothing other than being on said beach with him. Troy, I feel like you should have consulted Justin on who would be the best guest to bring to an awesome place before you chose Calee. Ever since he pointed out that he wished Calee had shoulder surgery instead of me, I realized his character judgement was spot-on.

I am sad I will not spend christmas with all of you, sad Daron and I will not be able to pound sticky buns into our mouths on time elapsed pictures, sad there will be no adventures in Narnia that now seem to always end with a kid in trouble, sad we won't see Bella jump through the snow, sad we won't sled with all the nieces & nephews, sad we won't hear everyone share their yearly update, and REALLY sad to miss Chris's prime rib.

But it needs to be said, that I love having something to miss. It grieves my heart to hear some friends here talk about wanting to stay here so they don't HAVE to do Christmas with their families. We were created for community. We were designed to do life with family. Our hearts yearn for a day where this is done perfectly, and until that day, the Walt/Loyd/Stockton/LoMo/Nothwehr/Schrock connection is a damn good warm-up.

I love that I get to be a part of this picture with Daron's family too. 

I will surely raise a moose milk or three and celebrate the birth of our King and thank Him for giving me you.

Just as an FYI, Toni Braxton & Shaggy are on their 3rd round of Christmas in Jamaica. Next time Troy, next time.


You guys. I am so sad. I feel so silly for feeling so because the past 13 years we have been fortunate enough to do something few even dream of! But they are my favorite of memories. 

Some of my fave highlights: Jenny dunking (or trying to at least), crack neck hill, cutting down our tree, the "nativities," Brady lighting his beard on fire, drenching Brady with water, the littlest Christmas tree, sticky buns, prime rib, family sharing time, singing Christmas carols, the sleigh ride!, snowshoeing adventures, elk lodge, marbles, Christmas mornings, Kyle & Carly getting engaged, lots of reading, and so many more... 

You all are my favorites. Really though. You are! 

Sorry to have changed the mood. I'll end with my favorite joke. 

What does the nosiest pepper do?




Gets jalapeño business.