Whew the holidays have flown by. Partly because we were also focused on Chester’s Graduation and partly because we have 2 crazy girls to run after. I said to Chester it literally (he hates that word) takes 2 adults working full time, non stop to make anything happen around Christmas. I now fully understand the tired mom that I remember on Christmas morning. The holidays are so busy for everyone, this year it felt so fun and we love most all moments with the girls. We are also in pretty good moods since Chester has been done with school and its fun to talk about our future … where ever it may take us.
Christmas #.5 – Lori & Karen Christmas
This one happened back in October when Grandma Lori and Grandma Karen came over. They brought these amazing pillow pads and also their ever famous box of cookies came in December complete with fudge and Christmas jammies for the kids.
Christmas #1 – Friends Christmas
This is the first year in maybe 3 years that we have not hosted a Christmas for all of our friends. We were so happy that our friends Tom & Jay decided to host a white elephant in Shaw. They do it up right complete with pomegranate sparkly goodness. This is an important Christmas for Chester and I to do Christmas away from the kids and have our own fun.
Christmas #2 – Nay Christmas
We do Christmas with Chester’s parents and brothers and sisters the Saturday before Christmas. We actually added another grandbaby, Zeke who was born in December, however we missed Katie’s family for Zeke to spend his first Christmas safely at home. Zeke evens out the grandkids with 5 girls and 5 boys now.
The kids did a secret santa for the first time because there are TEN of them! So that made things go a little faster. We also did a super white elephant for our exchange this year which included a horse head (this actually made an appearance at our first white elephant also), Kate Spade bag, 2 sleeping bags, an old fishing box, may survival supplies and of course a can of squid (did I mention that the theme was nighttime?). Next year our theme is accessory/ies. We got a Ninja from Blake and Robin which Chester was under-thrilled about but we brought it home and he/we LOVE it. The kids I don’t think have eaten that many veggies in one serving ever. Drinkable Kale? Yes please.
The night ended with the most delicious beef tenderloin. Our kids are just barely old enough that they can be okay walking around by themselves so they would stop by for pieces of roll and then run off again.
Christmas #3 – Koeller Christmas Eve
This is our fancy Christmas at Chester’s Grandma and Grandpa Koeller house in Quincy. The girls wear tights* and dresses and there are Christmas ties. Also this is the best place for wine tasting, shrimp cocktail (which I love), oysters (which I hate), and clam chowder (which I love). Even though we don’t see this side of the family often I really think its important that we see them so the kids know they have this awesome extended family that loves them and are really interested and invested in their future and happiness.
Christmas #4 – Family Christmas Morning
On Christmas Eve Eve Chester and I stayed up until about 2 am making bread (well Chester does that) and I had gotten this doll house furniture that is actually a 3D puzzle. I should have done it weeks ago when it came in, but of course I thought it would only take a few hours. Inbetween bread making Chester peaked over and said “no” I am not doing that, but then after about 20 minutes it comes over and works with me on this for maybe 3 hours putting it all together for me while I painted.
When we got back from Qunicy the house was a mess of course. So we did a pick up, oh and I ran out to get a few last minute items for my family. I just barely avoided the news crew setting up to do their bit about last minute holiday shoppers in Target.
But of course it was worth it when we got everything ready and the kids woke up happy. I continued the tradition of giving them a book first thing like my mom did. We aren’t necessarily against Santa, but we aren’t all about making Christmas about Santa. And we are definitely not Elf on the Shelf people, nothing against the people that do it, but I can’t get excited about it right now. I will never say never, but I don’t want to. We feel the same way about Santa that we do about Disney Princess — not our most favorite, but if the girls love it we are encouraging and let them do their thing.
Christmas #5 – Walton Christmas Day
This is a fun day for me because it brings back all the memories of my own childhood Christmases. Probably because we come back to my childhood house and with the kids now my mom has brought back all those traditions that come flooding back when I see her do them with Vivienne and Ellen. Mom must buy one present everyday during the year. And ever year she said she is cutting back, but I don’t think its possible for her.
The girls love their G-Ma.
AND MORE CHRISTMAS because we love it!
Christmas’ with Babies!
AND Last but Not Least, SANTA