Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Christmas 2015

Okay. Get ready for some rapid-fire blog posts. It's time to catch up on the essentials. 

About midway through this past year, I realized I could use my free time for a couple things. One, to write by journaling thoughts, sharing devotionals, giving tips and ideas, and posting familial anecdotes. Or two, use my free time to, well, to realize that I actually don't have any free time and that the time I wanted to use for writing would be better spent keeping my kids alive and educated and my home in standing order. Some moms are able to swing a million and one things and swing them all equally well. I am not that mom.

But, because I want to keep up with certain events, life stages, quotes, and lessons learned with my family, and because I want my kids to have record of these things to enjoy in years to come, I need to stay on top of tracking a few things every now and then.

And, yeah, yeah, yeah, because there are faraway grandmas and grandpas that like to see their grand kids. And THAT is reason enough.

Since we are now into the second month of 2016 and since I haven't made a peep since late last year, it's time to get kinda sorta caught up. Here goes:

Christmas 2015 was wonderful. Such a sweet and simple day at home with people I cherish. I love quality time at home with no agenda and no timetable. Time in pajamas. Time with games and puzzles. Time with food. Time just being together.
My mom-in-law drove 10 hours on Christmas Eve to arrive at our house just in time to join us for a Christmas Eve service. As is tradition, when we arrived home my kids rushed to the tree to see if new jammies were wrapped and waiting for them to open.
When everyone was cozy in their new pj's (cozy because they were soft flannel or cozy because the temps had soared that day into the 70's), I set out a buffet of appetizers and we settled in to watch a Christmas movie.
Once kids were snuggled in their beds and once I finally resorted to turning on the air conditioning, Grady, Nana, and I began the task of arranging gifts and hiding clues around the house for a scavenger hunt the next day.
Because my kids know better than to leave their bedrooms before 7:00 a.m., even on Christmas, the day didn't begin unnecessarily early. Because even with calm Christmas music playing and even with the joy of the special day and even with coffee brewing, I just can't be Christmas Happy in the wee hours.
We took turns opening gifts, one at a time, but quickly realized that because Jaxton thought it necessary to open gifts one teeny tiny piece of paper at a time, it was going to take a very long time. We may or may not have skipped him in the gift opening rotation once or twice.
When gifts were opened and ripped wrapping paper and torn boxes covered the entire living room, we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and sat down for breakfast. Very soon after breakfast Grady revealed the first clue to get the kids running and searching for the much-anticipated yearly scavenger hunt. Simple clues and simple hiding places, but huge excitement and huge joys each Christmas.
The gifts at the end of the scavenger hunt? Amazon Fires for the older three and a bowling set for Jaxton. They yelled with joy for their own screen and I was happy to know I didn't need to share mine anymore; Jax was happy with "More balls! More balls!" and I was rolling my eyes thinking about the fact that there were, unfortunately, more balls in my house.
We spent our Christmas Day Skyping with faraway family members, playing with new toys, watching basketball, and making homemade pizzas. And, since Nana was here it meant Annalyse and Jaxton had an always-willing playmate. (Merry Christmas to me!)
So that's Christmas 2015. Most of it at least. Are you still hanging with me? You're welcome that I eliminated 937 pictures.
Nana stayed for a couple of days after Christmas, which meant there was time to squeeze in a belated birthday party for Jaxton.
More presents? More cupcakes? More attention? This kid was in serious I-am-the-center-of-it-all withdrawal by the time Nana left and New Years rolled around. But at least he's cute. That was about the only redeeming quality to the onset of nonstop whines and knee hugging anytime I tried to do something without holding him.
Next up: Micah Man turns EIGHT!

Even though I swear he was just turning two like the little guy pictured above, it's true: he's now a tough-stuff, too-smart-for-his-own-good, quirky-funny, sports-loving eight year old young man.

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