Monday, December 30, 2013

2 Christmases (so far)

So far, we've had two Christmases. One on Wednesday morning at home with Santa and Nana and Pop Pop.  Then, again on Friday night as we celebrated with all of my in-laws. Soon we will travel to Tennessee to visit my mom and sister and wrap up the 2013 holiday season.  Now that we are to this point in the season, I'm happy and feel relaxed.  But I found the holiday season particularly overwhelming and stressful this year.  I was overcome with my emotions from missing my dad for a few days and the slightest thing would send me into a mess of tears and snot.  I think this was just the proverbial straw that broke the proverbial camel's back this year, as it peaked around his birthday on December 19th.  It just seemed that there was not enough time or energy to get everything done.  I felt like there was a weight or cloud over me that I just couldn't shake.  But we got everything done that needed to be done and in the end, it was worth it and I started feeling more like myself again. Sometimes you just have to realize that things you once prioritized are no longer important. This year I did good just to get the presents wrapped before Christmas;  they sure didn't have pretty ribbon bows like they have in years past.  Oh. Well.  I don't think the recipients appreciated them any less, right?

Here are a few pictures from our first two Christmases.

Wrapped and ready to go!

Christmas card tree complete.  :)  Thank you if you sent us one!
The boys were mesmerized by the fire - why don't we ever use our fireplace again?

Sitting his name puzzle out so Santa would know right where to put his toys. 
Playing Counting Cookies with Daddy and Pop Pop.

Stack of Christmas Eve bedtime stories.

Snuggled in for our annual tradition of reading 'Twas the Night Before Christmas before Santa comes.

Santa came and left his gifts wrapped in special paper (no bows - haha!).  He even left Dexter that blue candy cane he asked for. How does Santa remember everything!?

He even left Theo that TMNT lego set he asked for...

and the key chain, too. 

Santa must have enjoyed his cookies. 

Santa left this cardboard train as a big surprise!

And in the morning, the boys couldn't get out to the living room fast enough to see what had been left by their puzzles!  (Luckily they did sleep in until about 8:15 - a gift for mom and dad, indeed).

Once they saw their Santa gifts, they were content playing for a couple of hours while I baked our breakfast casserole, Ryan assembled a few million legos, and we ate breakfast.

Dexter's big gift from Santa was Jake's pirate ship, Bucky.

Finally, they wanted to see what ol' mom and dad threw under the tree for them.

Playing with Nana.

After opening all the presents, we were hungry and this crock pot turkey was just about the best thing ever.  I can't wait to make this again.  And again. 

This was also my first attempt ever at homemade mac n' cheese.  I was really happy with how this meal turned out, it was probably my favorite all week and was definitely not the biggest or fanciest.

Fast forward to Friday night.  There were many fruitless attempts to get a picture of both boys smiling in front of the tree. 

Not much better with three boys.

Cute of Dexter and Spencer, anyway.  I gave up!

We played lots of cards this weekend. I lost lots of money this weekend. 

The boys' favorite thing to do is chase each other - so fantastic that we have this circular floor plan...just kidding.

Sometimes you don't have a sword so you just use a screwdriver.  

Stay tuned for more of our holiday madness fun!



  1. Sweet sweet photos!! I love that you got a shot of yourself reading to your boys on Christmas eve!!! I hear ya on trying to get everything done and not feeling like yourself this year. This year was especially hard for me too between my mom and losing my job. I for sure didn't put any bows on the gifts I wrapped for Adrian. Thankfully my MIL wrapped most of the boys gifts for us (an added bonus!). Now I have to figure out where we are going to put all of this and then reign in the husband for the upcoming round of birthday gifts.

    1. Too bad that was the ONLY shot of me :( No pictures of me with the boys on Christmas. By the time I thought of it, they were going too crazy to even attempt it. Argh. We've got to get a better handle on that in the future! So sad. But yes, we had a great Christmas. Luckily lots of pictures of the boys if nothing else. :) Thank goodness for inlaws!

  2. Looks like you had a great Christmas! I love the idea of puzzle names to sort their gifts from Santa! Also your dinner sounded good and I love that it was simple! We had a simple Christmas and it was great.

    1. The puzzles were gifts from Santa last year and they were sitting on the fireplace hearth so it seemed to make sense that Santa would use them in that way. :) You have to try that turkey!!