So, how was your Christmas?
Our day was pretty fantastic. Low-key, lazy, plenty of time to play and relax - practically perfect in every way (the boys and I watched a lot of Mary Poppins this weekend!).
The festivities began Sunday night. We mixed up a batch of sugar cookies (oh, who am I kidding, we broke apart the little squares of dough and put them on a tray), then as they baked, each kid got to open his/her Christmas pajamas. This is the one tradition we've held since Owen was born: every Christmas Eve, the first present is opened, and it is always new Christmas jammies. So after opening their gifts and changing into them, we went back to decorate the cookies and make Hot (or, as Owen calls it, "Just Right") Chocolate. The cookies cooled and we read The Christmas Story. Then we put candles into the cookies, sang Happy Birthday to Jesus, and dug right in. We ate a boatload of cookies, talked about the presents that would be beneath the tree in the morning, Keith wrestled with the boys, then everyone was tucked in.
I don't know what the boys expected to see on Christmas morning. We've been quite clear with them that Santa Claus, while a very interesting story, is not real, and would not be leaving anything at our house. We did tell them that Christmas would bring gifts, but I don't think they fully understood - that is, until they woke up and found the tree absolutely bulging with gifts. We started by opening stockings, and then onto the unwrapping. Neither boy cares much for the actual unwrapping - they each tend to fixate on the gift, they want it unboxed! and batteried up! immediately! so that they can start playing. Never mind the 10 other gifts still under the tree! Eva opened up her gifts, not quite sure what the fuss was all about, but true to baby form, she found the boxes to be by far the most interesting thing in the room.
After gifts, I started on lunch. Nothing too fancy, but quite good this year, as my search for a decent stuffing recipe came out quite nicely in an Apple, Sausage and Sage Stuffing from www.foodnetwork.com. Lunch was good, then we all took a nice, long nap. We played with everyone's new toys into the evening, and Keith watched a lot of football. We were all relaxed and happy, and I think we had one of our best family Christmases ever.
So, best gifts this year. Owen: a jar of plastic pickles in his stocking from the $1 aisle at Targe+. Ari: a pony stable that was actually a gift from my parents to Owen, or his new scooter. Eva: plastic necklaces (she loves jewelry already, what can I say). I think Owen will love his new digital camera as soon as we get the appropriate batteries in it. He used a disposable throughout the holiday, and he loved taking pictures.
A short week at work, and then another long weekend! I love it. Due to our babysitter situation, Keith will be staying home with the kids throughout January, so I will be seeing the whole family much more than ever before. I am really looking forward to January, and all of 2007.
(Also, our first post-placement report is due for Eva, a 6-month update. Can it be that we're coming up on 6 months of having her home?)