Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas Eve 2011

We were lucky enough to host Christmas Eve again this year- I love having everyone over that night, and NOT needing to take my kids anywhere!  (And, by correlation, not needing to convince them to leave anywhere to come home.  Hallelujah.)

(Oh, and I have to tell you that once Wonder Daddy opened up the NORAD web page, Ernie was kind of obsessed with checking it during the day.  Naptime?  Got to check the page first.  Dinner time?  Snack time?  Potty time?  DITTO.  And OMIGOSH, I'MSOEXCITED, SANTA IS IN BUENOS AIRES!)

I made a simple dinner this year- Ivar's, a local fish and chips institution, makes a killer clam chowder...lucky for us, it's sold in a frozen concentrate at our local stores!  One crock pot of clam chowder, an armful of bread bowls from my aunt, and a huge tossed salad from my sister made our meal.  We also had the red Jell-O that my kids request from my aunt at every family celebration, a DIY italian soda bar, a whizz-bang cheese platter from my dad (have you ever had Wensleydale studded with dried apricots?  DO IT.)  and an amazing bouche de noel from my sister.  My candied cranberries made an appearance, and were joined by candied ginger.  There was something for everyone to eat, it was easy, and we spent hours just gabbing and noshing and gabbing.  Grandma read books to the kids, the girls disappeared downstairs to play kitchen, and it was just perfect.

After the extended family had gone home, we caravaned with Aunt LoLo's family around the neighborhood to look at our favorite Christmas displays one last time.  My parents stayed behind, in the blessedly quiet house, to tidy up the kitchen and just...be...quiet.  :)

Christmas Eve always brings certain things to our house, once the guests have gone home.

The Christmas jammies (sent by Nana this year- thank you!!)
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(His first EVER present.  Awwww, bless his little heart, look how hard he's trying!)

The new Christmas story book, with its gold wrapping.
the annual book

This year's addition was Redheaded Robbie, by Bill Lutrell.  Please PLEASE go look up this book- I get a little misty eyed each time I read it.  It's the story of a little 2nd-grade boy, Robbie, who can't seem to speak properly whenever he gets nervous or excited.  All the kids in his class are anxious to see whose name will be drawn from the hat, to write a Christmas story to read in the school assembly...and of course, Robbie's name is drawn, much to everyone's dismay (and Robbie's most of all.)  He goes to all his friends to ask for help with his story, and it's just the sweetest thing I've read in a long time.  It teaches kids how to help others and how to stick up for your friends.  It teaches what Christmas is about.

Of course, Santa can't be forgotten this night- Grandma helped the girls leave him and his reindeer a little treat.
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I think Ernie was worried he'd be confused, she wrote up these labels a few days before hand.  (I know it says meringues....she wrote it when we still HAD meringue cookies :)  It was the only word she asked for help with.  She left a darling note for him, too- I found it when I was tidying the table before our guests came.

Christmas Eve
December 24th
2011

DEAR SANTA,

ME AND MIMI HAVE BEEN GOOD.  MOM AND DAD HAVE BEEN GOOD TO.    (WE HAVE BEEN A LITTLE BAD.)

LOVE,
ERNIE

PS- SAY YES OR OK HERE.  ----->

On the back she drew my husband and my stockings, to make sure Santa knew whose was whose, since they're not labeled like the kids' are.  Oh my goodness, I love that girl so much.  Santa wasn't sure what the question actually was, but he wrote "yes" and she was thrilled!

We all read Luke 2 together, took the necessary "jammies in front of the tree" photo shoot, and scooted the kids off to bed.  Then all we had to do was wait an hour or two for the girls to fall asleep (!!!!), welcome Santa to our living room, and turn out the lights to wait for morning!

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1 comment:

What I Did Today said...

Oh my goodness! So much fun! Love Ernie's labels and letter. Too precious. Your kiddos are so cute. Can't believe how big baby boy is getting.