What ever warm fuzzy Christmas feelings were lacking leading up to the big day was sure made up for the minute the kids walked in the door and threw their back packs down ready to collect dust for the next 2 1/2 weeks. There's just something about having them all to myself, not sharing them with school, homework, friends, dance and other activities that fill our lives that finally made me exhale any bad feelings and inhale all the good. We watched A Christmas Story that night then the next day was spent in pajamas with chocolate crepes for breakfast and Maddox's creative energy over flowing. He and Ryder spent all morning rigging up a zip line with a basket for Santa to bring candy canes down the stairs. And then he moved on to a home made pinata, but I had to draw the line when he wanted to make a hot air balloon using a plastic grocery bag and a candle. I love seeing him in his element with that mind of his going a million miles a minute. That evening when Jason came home from work we went to dinner where Ryder slept on me the whole entire time and I soaked up every minute of his warm body flopped on mine listening to his steady breathing. We talked about plans for the new year and our family goal to start healthier eating habits.
We walked around the temple lights, wondering if we should be concerned about the police helicopter with the spotlights circling above, but mostly just keeping Ryder from running into people and pocketing all the hand outs and cards on display. We paused long enough to soak in the peaceful spirit at the Christus statue and to watch a short video with Ryder doing the potty dance the entire time.
We were planning to go see a few more light displays when we stumbled upon the Jack Frost Food Truck Forest and as always, the unplanned events are always the most memorable. We sat under the lights eating kettle corn popcorn, drinking hot chocolate and listening to the live music. The kids discovered some pogo sticks and stilts that kept them occupied. It was perfect.
We did our traditional Ihop Christmas Eve breakfast the next morning, although next year Jason and I both decided we needed to pick a different place to go. The service and food have gone down hill, but at least they had Santa passing out dollar store toys to all the kids. We took a bet on how long Ryder would keep his ninja vest on that he got. It was 6 days and 6 nights straight. We had some tense moments involving kicking under the table and spilled water and epic meltdowns over one thing or another, but thankfully the day was saved by the Christmas jokes I was finally able to pull up on my phone after like 20 minutes of slow data. I mean, how can you stay grumpy when you hear jokes like, "what do you call a reindeer with no eyes?" "no idear" "what do you call a reindeer with no legs and no eyes?" "still no idear". Seriously.
Christmas Eve turkey dinner, complete with a side of off key carols and a water glass orchestra. We had some good laughs that night,
which carried over to our open first pajamas and nativity scene which quite literally caused a scene. Baby Jesus was in tears because the laundry basket manger was uncomfortable, Joseph snapped back, "do you think they were rich enough to afford pillows??" which set off more tears resulting in Joseph quitting the play and baby Jesus crying, "I have no dad!!". I was laughing so hard, I'm sure that's a line we're going to be quoting for years to come. The chaos eventually died down, we rushed out to sprinkle reindeer food, which Jason was sure to convince them that the soggy oatmeal and glitter needed to be on the road and not the drive way. We spotted Rudoph's nose then rushed up stairs to brush teeth, read 'Twas the Night Before Christmas and snuggle in a hug and a kiss and a promise that I would set out cookies and milk for Santa. After the kids went to bed Jason and I decided that since Christmas day is all about the kids, we would use a quiet house on Christmas eve to exchange our gifts. I loved it. I got him a go pro and a mirror for the boat, he got me a kitchen aid and fit bit and it was perfect.
The Christmas morning line up. We made them wait until 7:00. This was the first year Kylie was pushing to sleep longer, but I'm still with the kids and can't sleep because I'm too anxious to see their faces when they see what Santa brought them. It was another great Christmas, the kids loved their gifts and I loved the joy that was over flowing in our home. We went to church, which at first we weren't too excited about Christmas landing on a Sunday, but as much as I love laying around in pajamas all day, it was nice to be able to focus our thoughts on Christ for an hour as he really is the reason for the season. Merry Christmas!