Christmas Festivities Recap

We’ve made it to the Christmas Festivities recap!
First up was a visit to the in-laws the Saturday before Christmas.
Henry had a basketball game that day.  I had finished <just about> all my wrapping the day before.  The gift wrapping I hadn’t finished – my nephews’.  So once Henry finished with basketball we beelined it to the dollar store for gift bags, a few extra gifts and some diapers…because I was almost completely out (yikes).  The kids changed their clothes in the car and we all sat silently for most of the two hour trip as Jane got in her afternoon nap.  We were a bit late for dinner, but dang it, if we didn’t try our best getting out and about and on the road!
Regardless, we were excited to get in some family time!

Jane opening her first gift – EVER!  I almost missed this because she had the gift before I knew it and then realized, “Marie!!!!!  Jane is opening her first gift EVER!  Document that, woman!”
Fun was had by all and we managed to get in some game time, too.
We spent the night, woke up the next morning and headed out to meet Jon’s cousin, her husband and their little boy, Brigham.  Check out these adorable cookies Jon’s cousin had had made for all of the kids!

Our Elves were sitting in the kids’ seats earlier that morning but hadn’t left a note suggesting what the kids should do about them being in their spots.  The kids flat-out refused to move them or even touch them unless they were obtained clearance by the Elves themselves.
Wouldn’t you know it – while the kids were outside playing, the Elves somehow magically left a note telling Henry and Eliza to hold them all day!  😉
Oh the magic.

We settled in at home and prepared for the days ahead.  Jon had to work the next day so it was just me and all three kids from 8-6.  It was a good day…
The Elves had left gingerbread houses for the Henry and Eliza to work on that morning.

Our neighbor had left gift bags at our door the day we had left to visit Jon’s parents and we had never opened the bags to see what was inside.  Finally, FINALLY on Monday evening, we had a second to open them up.  How fun!
Christmas Eve had arrived and I had plans to do ALL.  THE.  THINGS!!!
We made chocolate chip cookies from scratch.  Cookie making and baking on Christmas Eve has somehow become a little family tradition of ours!  I love, love, love it!

While the cookies baked we had multiple dance parties!  It was everything I could have hoped for!
Once the cookies cooled and the dance parties had ended I told the kids to decorate the chocolate chip cookies with sprinkles and frosting and all the sugary-goodness – because why not!?!
I was determined to do some art with the kids.  Some reindeer hands and a sweet little baby foot as Santa’s sleigh!  I also did a clay handprint for Jane.  I have one for each kiddo for their first Christmas.  They’re some of my most cherished possessions.

Another dance party ensued.  The kids wanted Jon to hold all of them.

This will most likely be the first and the last time that’ll ever happen.  Be still my heart!

I cooked up a HUGE Christmas dinner; Ham, sweet potato casserole, creamed corn, Brussels sprouts…
I absolutely loved cooking up a huge meal and I’m already looking forward to it again next year!
Speaking of meals…
We couldn’t forget about feeding the reindeer!  Eliza and Henry both have/had the same first grade teacher and she makes “reindeer food” with the kids before Christmas break.  It’s so fun to watch them sprinkle it everywhere.

Our Elves had left reports and the kids had been given good marks.  Phew!  😉
Speaking of Elves, ours came and dropped off pajamas at the front door and just like every year before, Elmer and Violet just POOF! disappeared!

How does that even happen???  😉

We all immediately changed into our new Christmas cozies and then lots of pictures were taken.  Haha!

Henry spent time putting together traps for Santa.  My heart couldn’t handle this…
We got in some family Christmas book reading, watched a little bit of tv, then the kids were off to bed.
Jon and I turned on, “It’s a Wonderful Life,” I poured myself some wine and as luck would have it, I managed to capture this photo before bed…I guess Santa must’ve been around when we weren’t looking.  Hmmmm….

The kids somehow slept in until closer to 7:30, if memory serves me right.  Jane was first to be up and I just couldn’t wait for our first Christmas as a family of five!!!

We opened gifts, had cinnamon buns and bagels for breakfast and leftovers for dinner.  Eliza had taken to wanting to help with the dishes – be our guest!  I caught her several times over break wanting to help.  There were even times I’d be nursing Jane in her room and I’d come upstairs and Eliza would  be hard at work – you go, girl!!!  For real….please don’t stop.  Haha!
The weather was GOOOOOORGEOUS!!!  It was in the 50’s – so we definitely made it a point to get outside!  I’m all for a white Christmas, but I wasn’t about to complain about a warm Christmas Day!

Jane received two things for Christmas (other than clothes from me), that Activity Center and a bubble machine!  She loved both!

I found this in our fireplace.  Eliza drew this and I love everything about it!
Girlfriend sitting at her new vanity.  Her little faces – she’s a crazy and lovable little six year old!  

The sky on Christmas night!  I saw some people a few doors door, renters at the vacation property, with ugly sweaters on and taking lots of pictures with this scene behind them.  It was so fun to see and the sky was the perfect backdrop for such a special day!


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