Friday, January 3, 2014

Christmas cheer

Our Christmas Eve started out with gingerbread house decorating with my big guys.  Daddy was so sweet to bring home all they needed to make this house, and James & Hayden could hardly wait to help eat it, I mean make it. haha

Hayden's face = priceless

Our neighborhood lights luminaries on Christmas Eve, so we took our little guys around the block to look at lights after dusk before heading to Church for  Christmas Eve service.  The boys thought it looked like a race track.

We picked Auntie Christina up from the airport on Christmas Eve & she was able to join us for the family service that night.  Our guys got to sit up for the Children's sermon together this year, and mommy only had to jump in a time or two to maintain order.  It's just so exciting being up in the front of the service!

James putting his around around Hayden

Grammy & Papa were able to come up late on Christmas Eve, so they were with us on Christmas morning!  Calvin's 1st Christmas was just the sweetest.  He was actually interested in the gifts, wasn't impatient when he was waiting with Grammy, & just enjoyed the morning.  One of my favorite gifts we gave Calvin was this lion - we love a good lion in this family.

This was the mood of my big guys on Christmas morning.  This year they really looked forward to Christmas, got really excited, & even bunked in together that week while we had family stay with us.  They were a.blur.  It was great.

Calvin opening some of his gifts - his own school bus!

but Calvin wasn't only interested in his own gifts... but big brothers' too!  Hayden was really fun to watch as he ripped open the paper on his gifts, piece by piece!  His arms flew wildly & then he would make his classic 'surprise face'.  I hope never to forget some of the precious ways he expresses himself at this age.

The joy of being able to give good gifts (however big or small) to our children.  Our guys had a special Christmas morning this yes because they had gifts from mommy&daddy as well as Grammy&Papa at the same time!  The best gift of all was really the joy of James, Hayden, & Calvin.  There is just

Mimi & Grandpa were able to join us for Christmas dinner & brought more gifts for our kiddos.  The boys had so much fun seeing them & it made our Christmas day very complete.

We enjoyed a lovely meal followed by cheesecake made by daddy.  I tell you what, something about making sweet treats for me at Christmas is special.  The boys really loved making 'Grammy's special recipe' also known as 7 layer bars.  They, like their mommy, absolutely love to eat them!  Christmas treats, a Christmas mug with some coffee or hot chocolate, served on a Christmas plate is my favorite way to enjoy it.

We had a blessed Christmas day.

We spent the rest of the week with Aunt Christina and Grammy&Papa at our house.  There was lots of play time, rest time, and even movie date to see Frozen!  (what a GREAT movie)  We took the boys to the park & took naps & drank lots of coffee.  Mostly, we spent the time together, and I'm thankful we could.

The weekend after Christmas, we headed down to Tampa to celebrate with our family & extended family on Matt's side.  We enjoyed a lovely meal, beautiful decorations, & another chance to exchange gifts with family.  The boys had a great time playing games, watching movies, going on bear hunts, looking for treasure & enjoying their family.  We were so blessed by how good the boys' behavior was, and how sweet baby Calvin was despite his routine being really disrupted.  We were able to see Matt's cousins from out of state as well.  a.blessed&

our big boys, who had been sharing a room this whole week, ended up getting to share a bed for the first time that night.  It was so sweet, but so funny to watch.  James almost fell asleep over&over but Hayden just kept talking to him, holding his hand, pretending to 'eat him up'.  hilarious & precious.

Christmas.  We receive the greatest gift & in turn we are able to give token to each other in remembrance of that gift.  Emmanuel, God with us.  In the simple, small.  In our 'successes' & in our 'failures'.  When our family gatherings are seamless & when things feel like they spiral out of control.  God is with us, Emmanuel.  and I am so thankful.

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