This year was even better! Although Minnesota had record breaking snow fall this month, we were not snowed in. But since my dad's side of the family agreed to have their celebration the day after Christmas, we were able to see everyone and take our time everywhere we went! Now when you're kid-less and traveling to multiple families' houses, like my sister this year, it is fun and exciting and though I'm sure you're worn out by the end of it, it's nothing like lugging 3 kids and all their stuff around with you (and trying to figure out how to get a decent nap in for your toddler). Traveling to multiple parties with kids is no easy feat, but spreading things out and minimizing how many parties each day (2 works perfectly if they are timed right) really simplifies things.
We started the night before Christmas eve with baths and showers for the kids, I braided the girls hair per their request so their hair would be wavy, we gathered up our outfits and made sure we got things washed that needed to be, and sent the kids to bed. Spence and I then spent quite a while wrapping the presents that had been purchased more recently and organizing the game gifts and white elephant gifts.
Christmas eve morning was spent getting dressed up, making monkey bread, gathering up presents, swooning over Little Man in his tiny little tie (I died when I saw him all dressed up, then I revived myself so I could gush over him some more), and making an enormous mess.
Babydoll loved that Santa stopped by, and was plenty excited to get an early gift from him! He brought the girls each a puzzle, and Little Man got candy and a car (I think).
Though Sweet Pea says she still believes in Santa, she has gotten to the age that sitting with him and the Easter bunny are for little kids. It just doesn't thrill her anymore.
see what I mean?
After several relaxed and fun hours with my mom's side of the family, we drove home to let the dog outside and swap presents for the next party.
Every year for Christmas eve Spencer's mom prepares a lobster and shrimp dinner and we eat by candle light (though the last couple years we've added the lights turned up just a bit with the dimmer). We started with some presents for the kids, then enjoyed a big dinner of lobster, shrimp, butter, popcorn shrimp, potatoes, butter, salad, corn, buns, butter, milk, wine, and sparkling grape juice. Then we opened more presents, enjoyed eachothers' company, and checked the norad tracker for where Santa was.
Around 8:30 Santa was in South America and moving his way up to the states. My sister-in-law Allie pointed this out to Babydoll who immediately jumped up and exclaimed that we have to get home now! so as not to miss Santa. Once home we put out the cookies and milk for Santa, and carrots for the reindeer, got the kids in jammies, and put them to bed. When Spence went in for his goodnight hugs for the girls Babydoll looked at him dead serious and told him, "you better be in bed before Santa gets here, or else!"
The kids in bed, our work was not yet over. We got the family room downstairs cleaned up for the upcoming morning, laid out the kids Santa toys, and got organized for the next day's events.
Then collapsed into a pool of fatigue.
Christmas weekend part 2 tomorrow!