christmas has come and gone, once again. as a kid...i would fight post advent depression every year. you could find me, on the curb...caressing the dried up branches of our tree...whispering words of encouragement, like, "you've been a great tree and i'll miss you so much." i would feel all blue inside because it was over. i still get the "let down"...but have also learned to appreciate the promise of a new year. a fresh start. the hope of possibility.
if we would have shelled out the money to do christmas cards...this would have been the picture used.
we have a december family picture taken every year. it's important to chronicle growth.
christmas eve morning started off with the kids opening their secret sibling santa presents.
this went better than i even dreamed it would. since they were the first gifts opened, they were beyond excited. which gave way to excitement for the person giving the gift. it's always more fun to give a gift that someone is truly excited about. this will be a tradition that we continue.
and i loved having them open them on christmas eve morning, instead of that night because they got to play with them all day, while i frantically tied up loose ends.
colton drew aiden's name.
annslee had chase.
chase had colton.
chad had to leave by 11:30 to get to the first service.
miraculously, i got the food prepared, the house picked up, the rest of the loose ends tied up, myself and the kids ready for the 4:00 church service.
we pulled up to the christmas eve service just in time for her to finally give in to the exhaustion from the toll that the week's events had taken.
if only she would have stayed asleep in my arms...maybe she would not have gotten herself in so much trouble. she instantly insisted on her own seat in the service and began throwing a bloody tantrum when she was forced to sit in my laugh to make room for daddy. she was a hot mess by the time the first carol began and bought herself a golden ticket to the nursery.
it was nothin a little twirling in the lobby couldn't fix afterwards.
by the time we made it back to the house for the celebration...i wasn't too proud to partake in the sauce. holiday sangria cures whatever ales you.
we took time out to get a picture of the whole lot of us.
we officially named the cat...since he is officially one of us now.
introducing the first full-family picture, complete with trout the dog and george bailey the cat.
yeah...so we watched it's a wonderful life and george bailey just seemed appropriate.
trout could not be convinced that because it was christmas eve...he should be a gentleman and not insist on his evening walk.
so...we all went together and surveyed the lights.
it ended up being a great walk.
once the kids were all nestled in their beds...i longed to be in my kerchief, and chad in his cap...but we had work left to do.
santa came for colton...
and even trout and george bailey.
i have been waiting for this christmas ever since i found out that i was having my first daughter. when i was 5...my paw paw made me this doll house for christmas. he made it from scratch, to match the house that we lived in, cutting out each tiny shingle...one by one. honey crocheted the rugs and sewed the curtains. it sat in my room my entire childhood.
and it was time to pass it down.
honey gave it to the girls this year.
this is the stuff that dreams are made of.
colton was surprised by granna and grandaddy with an itouch.
chase's wish came true when he opened the johnny cash poster from uk.
and the girls showed delight with every turn.
santa enjoyed the milk and cookies...and fed the reindeer the snack that we left for them.
the proof is in the pudding.
last night...the elves snuck away and made their way back to the north pole.
they new that aiden was going to be devastated and left a sweet note.
my girl was heart-broken...just as her elf knew she would be. there were tears this morning.
but the promise of a new year awaits...and all good things must eventually become a memory. and that's ok. the elves will return someday...just as december will. and the magic will resume.
the magic of our every day will sufficiently suffice.