Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Day 2012

What a relaxed Christmas Season we had this year, I avoided Pinterest like  the plague! The season was a quiet affair, much like it probably was when baby Jesus was born. John and I had a great time one evening  making our 6 batches of Almond Roca with his stirring contraption and soft Christmas music in the background. All our neighbors loved our kids special deliveries and the Fedex man just glowed from ear to ear when we gave him not one but two bags so he could share with his wife. We love our fedex man - even the dog has stopped barking at him!  Then the following evening we made two batches of Aunt Ethel's sugar cookies for the kids in John's class to decorate. John has a following now at school that make seasonal requests for "his" sugar cookies!

Our kids received 4 gifts from us this year: Something they wanted, something to wear, something to read and something they need. I had heard of this over the last few years as a way of slowing down gift giving and making Christmas more about the One who came instead of about the One who wants. It certainly made shopping quick and easy, there wasn't a lot of store walking and thanks to some great Kohl's deals it didn't cost us too much money, though Amazon seemed to keep calling my name! Here is what the kids received from Mommy & Daddy:

Something to Wear: Abby/Princess Dress  Gabe/New jeans  Drew/Sketcher shoes (1st year he has asked for a brand name ,,,, scary!

Something to Read: Abby/Christmas Zonderkid Book  Drew & Gabe/ Adventure Bibles

Something they need: Abby/ humidifier * totally practical gift!  Drew/Art kit   Gabe/Lego kit *little bit of a stretch but he needed it or I could sense arguing in my future as Gabe tried to "help" Drew with his set! 

Something they want (unwrapped and waiting on Christmas morning): Abby/ Doll House  Drew/Lego Kit   Gabe/Pirate ship from Imagine x

This Christmas it snowed, so the kids were ecstatic and quite excited to get out in the snow on Christmas evening! We had my father and mother and Nana all at our house for  Christmas, then my sister and her husband and kids arrived the following day. My dad made the Prime Rib and my mother made the rest of the meal. We had our friends the Tyson's over and also invited our neighbor over for dinner. The boys spent the whole day working on their Lego's. Drew's gift was a Lego City mine set with 728 pieces - I thought it would take him a few weeks to put together, but he focused and finished it in 24 hours. Wow! Gabe's  gift was a Pirate ship that he proudly shared with his brother.  He had mommy and daddy help him put his smaller Lego kit together and he spent a lot of time watching Drew put his kit together.  Abby received her first doll house - it is so cute! She loves to play with the baby dolls and put them to bed. She is surprisingly enjoying sleeping in the boys room while our company is still here. Her favorite place to sleep is Gabe's bed!  Gabe is happy to sleep on the floor for his sister - he is such a sweet and kind boy.

The kids loved reading our Season of Advent again this year and talking about the Adornaments that we hung on the Jesse Tree. Abby had fun learning the names of Jesus - the boys remembered them all from years past. They all had fun making up Christmas songs and singing Christmas carols. That was about it for our traditions. John had fun coming up with families to provide Christmas for, but we didn't really include the kids in that this year.

Nana bought them How to Train Your Dragon and Brave for Christmas so they have been movie a-holics for the last two days. I think they are finally tired to TV! They are also tired of tummy aches since they have been eating a lot of sugar. Sweet! Its funny to see them turn down ice cream or cookies. I did discover that Abby is the only one of the kids who likes Candy Canes - the boys think they are too "Spicy!" This morning Gabe grabbed some honey nut cheerios from a box John brought home from school, he grabbed them and exclaimed "I'm going to eat these cheerios with the high fructose corn syrup!" Oops, that boy sure listens!

John saved the Christmas card day -  two weeks before Christmas, he took all the kids after church and gave me the whole afternoon to write our Christmas letter. My Hero! I was able to write the letter and get them all mailed in just one afternoon!

The highlight of Christmas was the book I put together. I've been blogging for almost 8 years. I always hoped one day to publish a yearly book so my kids could look back on what their life was like as they get older. John has been bugging me to do that too, but I never found the time to put it all together. So, imagine my excitement when I Googled "blog to book" and found a company that pulls all the entries and creates a book! The whole process took me 45 minutes! So for Christmas John received a 229 page book that encompassed all of my 2011 blog posts. In the next year I'll get the rest done, but prior to 2007 I don't have pictures tagged in the blog since I'd copied the text from another blog company I used. I will need to go back sometime this year and add pictures. It is so much fun to see how the kids change from year to year.
Drew blessed us this year with his own piece of art - he painted us a turtle on a piece of canvas. He even wrapped it up with green painter tape and Christmas wrapping paper. For a fun twist, I took all three kids to the dollar tree and gave them 3.00 - they were to buy a gift for their siblings and daddy, It was so special to see the delight on their faces when the gift they bought were opened. The boys were really into it, Abby is coming along, but didn't quite grasp the excitement like the boys did. Gabe struggled the day we went shopping because he kept finding gifts for himself, but once Christmas came and he saw his gifts being opened, he was so proud of the thought he put into his gifts.

We hope you had a very Merry Christmas!

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