Thursday, January 3, 2013

Christmas Came!

Right on cue, the snow began to fall on Christmas Eve. While Mom busied herself with last minute Christmas day preparations, Dad took charge of occupying the children. Inspired by the fresh batch of snow, Andrew retrieved an empty water heater box from the basement. After recruiting a pair of artists, he instructed them that his new snow sleigh was in need of holiday decor. Enthused with their assignment, Eliza and Henry went to work coloring the box while Andrew focused on the mechanics necessary to pull his 'sleigh.' If only we'd had a string of bells lying around, the vision he had would have been complete. 

Off they dashed! The snow was still falling as Andrew pulled them up and down our street. Lottie, who was napping at the time, missed out on this run but had the opportunity to go out for a spin a few days later.

 Their fun continued in the backyard where Andrew plowed a pile of snow up to our rock pile so he could construct a snow hill. Subsequent snow days have added more snow allowing for a second hill to be built.
 That afternoon the kids warmed themselves up while watching Arthur Christmas. It was fortunate that we didn't have much going that night as driving down to Salt Lake on the slick roads would have been frightening. Instead, we went out to dinner near our house. Coming home, Andrew pulled into the Church parking lot and began doing 'doughnuts.' A pair of truckers were likewise there with their semi on the other end of the parking lot. We were close enough, however, to see them laughing at the sight of our family van spinning endlessly about. Andrew and I laughed wickedly while the kids fought back tears of worry.

As we entered the garage the kids were all bonding over their mutual post traumatic stress when Andrew asked, "Does anyone want to go do that again with me in the 4runner?" Surprising us both, all three of them instantly calmed their shaky emotional demeanor as they eagerly accepted his invitation.

Eliza was about to explode with anticipation as we made our way around the Christmas tree to open their new pajamas. Sadly, the ornaments I had made didn't arrive until New Years Eve so that Christmas Eve tradition didn't happen. In the spirit of admitting defeat, we made it halfway through that evening's story as they were all bouncing off the walls with excitement. Eliza thoughtfully prepared Santa's milk and cookies and arranged them on the table with a handful of Eliza made, "To Santa" gifts that she'd constructed throughout the season as well as letter she'd recently written for him.
 Andrew and I stayed up way to late that night. Waiting for the children to fall asleep, we watched the new Batman. Around midnight, we hear a pair of feet darting through the upstairs hallway. Going up to investigate, Andrew finds Eliza back in her bed, feigning sleep.

"If you don't fall asleep, Santa won't come." He warned. Our future teenager replied,

"... but he already came, Dad!"... like duh. She can see from the upstairs overlook. It's true. Santa had already come and that poor child was left to endure the painful anticipation alone in her dark bedroom.
 As we fell into bed that night, I kicked myself for staying up so late. Crossing my fingers that Eliza would sleep in since she'd likewise stayed up late, I immediately fell asleep. 7:00 on the dot, Eliza danced into our bedroom. Because we're miserable and awful, we took our precious time delaying the event. With Henry and Lottie still asleep, we justified our wickedness as we made her wait an additional 50 minutes. Poor girl.
Finally the time came. With the casserole cooking and the kids bouncing on the stairs, we prepared the video camera that sadly had been plugged into the wrong charger. CURSES. Not wanting a single second of that day to be spoiled I swallowed that disappointment in one giant gulp.
Their joy was my joy. They were so happy for each other as they took turns going through the sea of gifts. 
 Breakfast came next. Eliza's prayer was a tender one as she prayed that we'd all remember the meaning of the day (and Easter) was really about Jesus. Henry had the line of the morning. While piling a bite of food into his mouth, he simply said,

"See. I told you I was on the good list."

And then the Christmas rush began. Showering the kids, preparing a dish for Christmas night and packing a suitcase, Andrew and I prepared ourselves for our visit to Salt Lake for a lovely game of what I like to call Christmas ping pong. We spent that afternoon with the Flegal's and then to my parent's home for dinner and back again to the Flegal's for a sleepover.
It makes for a long day but we wouldn't have it any other way. It is a real treat and a blessing to have our families live so close. Thank you, thank you for your kindness and generosity.

And to my Mr. Claus,
Thank you for letting Mrs. Santa have her way in spoiling our family and for providing us with the monetary source of that magic. More important than the gifts under the tree, thank you for spending your creative energy and time in making their childhoods special. I sure love you.


Karina said...

As always, I enjoyed updating myself on your blog/life. Love you!

*Jess* said...

What a great christmas!

Paige said...

Looks like so much fun! We call it "The Christmas Parade of Homes." From house to house we go!! BTW, the way you do it isn't so bad...and next year I think we will be staying home most of the day.

Lynsie and Joey said...

It's been several months since I blogsurfed (and over two years since we have updated our own blog), but I took some time tonight to find that you are still our standard bearer for family blogs. Honestly, it is a service you do as we actually get to live a little vicariously through you; not that we aren't doing similar things too, but we aren't capturing it as well. Thank you for your consistency! It's so much better when it's consistent. It really is!