Monday, November 28, 2011

An Early Christmas

Do you like the smell of cinnamon? Come on over if you do. There is a light haze lingering from a couple of days ago, thanks to Grandma's helpers at making cinnamon-applesauce ornaments. 
Lots of cinnamon. Lots and lots and lots of cinnamon. And lots of "Is it all mixed in yet so I can make a shape? How come it's taking so long? Why does the cinnamon make a cloud when I pour it? I need to sneeze!"
Persistence paid off, and after lots of kneading and lots of cookie cutter stamping...
... a couple trays of ornaments were ready for light baking and then lacing.

We ended up with a handful of stars missing a point and angels missing wings, but all in all, the ornaments turned out great and are hanging on Grandma's tree. Hanging in another three branch cluster that is begging to be rearranged and spread around the tree when little boys aren't looking.
Our family gathered for an early Christmas celebration since we won't be here during Christmas. Annalyse was intrigued by all the gifts that appeared under the tree when she woke up from her nap. And, while no one was looking, she had three unwrapped and tossed aside in mere seconds. Sneaky.
Landon was oh-so-patient when Annalyse insisted on sitting on his big gift. He started out quietly asking her to get down and when she didn't budge, his dark eyes silently pled with me to move her. Poor kid. I wouldn't want a drooling baby on top of my gift either!
When he had his gift tore open, he was soon on to the next one and when Annalyse realized he wasn't paying attention, she climbed back on top and sat there watching everyone else rip open gifts.
You know what I've decided? Taking pictures of several people simultaneously opening gifts while screaming about each one and yelling at you each time to look and see, makes it next to impossible to get pictures that capture the moment! Fun chaos, but still chaos.
A new baby doll! Thanks Grandma. I need practice at holding my baby and not flinging her by the arm and grabbing her by the head, though.
Yes, what you see is what is indeed happening. Three little boys. Three cap guns. A gazillion rounds of firing in the living room. Opening gifts came to a standstill while the boys went crazy over "guns that really make loud booming noises and have real bullets!"
Now here's a gift I can get excited about! A cute pink stroller is way more fun than a loud cap gun, don'tcha think?
Guns and baby dolls and race cars and board games... and laughter and squealing (that would be from yours truly)... and ripping and throwing and yelling. That's a down-home family Christmas.
My boys have acquired a rock tumbler. I'm quite excited about the science lessons this will provide and the fun "semi-precious gemstones" (as the box states) that will result. But, I'm absolutely not excited about listening to them tumble and tumble and tumble for two weeks straight.
But of course. When gifts are open kids are ready to play and that means dads need to get tools and begin assembling ASAP. There is not time to waste when new toys are sitting in pristine boxes waiting to be raced and rolled and tossed!
Nope, it's not even December. Nope, there wasn't any snow. Nope, it wasn't early morning gift opening. 
But yes, it was still Christmas. Yes, it was still family. And yes, it was still fun. So from us to you, Merry (early) Christmas!


  1. yeah for early Christmas! We had a little bit of that too last week! Glad you're having a good time in Michigan!

  2. So fun! Your parents look they are in their glory! Love reading about your trip...keep 'em coming! And we pulled out our cinnamon applesauce ornaments from last year...and they still smell just as good as ever! By the way, could you please make Annalyse stop growing...she's getting too big! Need to see that sweet niece again!

  3. Beautiful pictures. I know you have had a wonderful time with your family. Your nephew looks just like Grady Lee!!!!