All in all Christmas was superb this year. All of my immediate family flew in for the special day (except poor Tessa who tried and got cancelled flight after cancelled flight due to snow and high winds). We haven't had Christmas together like that since I was pregnant with Ellie! I think the year was 2005, so it's been a while!
We started the day at home. It was really nice to be here by ourselves for the first time in years. I actually had to wake the children up! I woke at 5am all excited and giddy and went downstairs pluggin in Christmas lights and starting coffee......and waiting. Finally Ellie woke up and then Gracia and then the 3 of us went in and roused the boys. We came down stairs and finished the last ornaments for our Jesse tree and Dave read the story of Jesus' birth from Luke. It was really special, I was surprised the kids weren't impatient and begging to tear into their presents. It was actually nice they sat and listened to Dad talk about why we were celebrating a special day and why we exchanged presents at all.
Of course we DID get to the presents and recorded them opening the big FULL boxes from grandma and grandpa, that was a hoot, we'll post that at some point! With our growing family we never have tons of money to spend each year and even though it would be nice to go out and splurge on the kids, it felt really good to be able to buy the kids 1 thing they really wanted (a Nerf Blaster for Jonah and a Poop Doll for Ellie) and a few other things we knew they would really enjoy. And they were so satisfied and pleased, even though there were lots of things left on their lists they didn't get. We never heard ONE complaint. I felt like we accomplished getting across to them what we were really celebrating, and it wasn't just gifts.
After a quick call to Dave's family (which didn't last long enough) we threw the kid in the car and headed to my parents house. That was where the REAL choas happened! Have you ever tried to open presents simultaneously with 20 people????? It was crazy! But fun too! I spent most of the time trying to chase after the flying wrapping paper *(okay I was seated and mainly just being pelted with wrapping paper balls but whatever)*!! The kids were even more pleased with the thoughtful gifts they got there as well, Jonah really scored big time with all sorts of science experiments and books, and I was happy as well, being the nerd that I am!
Then we ate and ate and ate the best food ever, all the traditional stuff was there (well traditional for our family) like Great Noni's "Red stuff" (layered jello mixrd with fruit with sour cream in between...it's deliscious!) and then we played Pit and Apples to Apples. I was so thrilled that everyone was loving Pit. We learned that game from the Heldts and then found friends here that also love that game and actually gave us a copy! And it was a hit, the loud screaming and yelling was hilarious. (If you haven't ever played Pit and want to know what it's like to be in a stock market check it out, you can find it at Toys R Us....it's easy and fun!)
Eventually we made our way home, exhausted and full in heart and belly and trunk!!!
Last week though wore me out. I had a few meltdowns the days after Christmas. From last Saturday until this Sunday we went every single day to something out of the house. A party, birthday, dinner, shopping, Church, something took us away from home. And the more we go the bigger the mess is here. I dont' know how it happens exactly but almost everday we were coming home late at night, getting up early packing up and going again. I guess that leaves no time for cleaning, laundry, straightening. Things get thrown out of the car and back in, it's chaos. Needless to say I was totally fried.
And now everyone in the house is sick. Fevers, runny noses, coughing ,the whole works. I think so far I have it the easiest with just a runny nose, maybe it's all those green smoothies I've been drinking everymorning...who knows but we are pumping everyone's immune systems with all the strenght building things it needs hopefully!
I've been trying to catch up on all the reading from the books I've requested from the Library...I finished Ina May Gaskin's books on birth and midwifery, I'm working now on Lorraine Curry's "Easy Homeschooling Companion" and after that I've got a Biblical parenting book by MacArthur lined up, The Green Foods Bible, Disease Proofing your child, Baby Greens, the Birth Book and the Gentle Birth Book. I guess it seems I'm in a non-fictions sort of frame of mind! Funny I think I am becoming Dave, I'll need some easy reading at some point soon I'm sure!
We've got 5 days left before school starts up again and we are in the full swing of things! I've still got sewing to do and organizing to finish and I absolutely HAVE to catch up with laundry before next week Monday. I might drown in it if i don't. It's been a constant purr of the washer and dryer for days and I 've commited to folding it right away so the clean pile doesn't turn into a mountain on me! It's worked so far.....who knows how many loads I have left though!
Hope the end of your vacations are restful and fun!
And just for the record, we found out we are having another little girl! She was very clear about showing us who she was! Her little profile is so adorable, I can't wait to meet her! It seems to me that to others a fourth baby and a third girl in a row isn't very exciting, but to us the blessing is amazingly exciting. All of the children are so different and so wonderful to watch develop and grow, she will be just as special to watch!