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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Our Christmas 2009

We had a wonderful Christmas! Grant has been home since Christmas Eve, and is on vacation from work until Monday. We've been enjoying a lot of family time!

After our busy Christmas Eve afternoon, we had a few hours to relax before getting together with our families. Our first stop was at my sister's house. Dylan and Lexie got to play with some of their cousins, while we had a great time visiting with my family. The kids had a small gift exchange, and then the adults had a very entertaining white elephant gift exchange while the kids played with their new toys!

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We attempted a sister picture before we had to leave.

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We were having so much fun, that we didn't realize that we were late for Grant's family get together. I wish we could have stayed longer!

We spent the rest of the evening with Grant's family. Every Christmas Eve, we get together with Grant's parents, brother, Nannie, and Uncle Scott. We eat the same (yummy) food every year...I couldn't wait for Uncle Scott's delicious eggnog!

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While we're there, Grant's parents give Lexie and Dylan new ornaments for the Christmas tree.

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Every year, we give the kids Christmas pajamas to unwrap and wear on Christmas Eve.

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This year, we decided to let them each have a small gift from us to unwrap. It worked out well, because they had new toys to keep them busy! I think we'll keep this tradition!

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We had a great Christmas Eve!

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By the time we left Nannie's it was already well after midnight. Lexie was the only one who managed to stay awake on the five minute drive home, so she got to put out the reindeer food, hang Santa's key on the door, and leave the milk and cookies. Next year, we'll have to arrange to do this stuff before we leave the house in the evening, so both kids can be involved!

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She fell asleep quickly, and Santa and I got to work! I had a raging headache, and didn't finish setting up everything until almost 3 AM, but it was well worth it.

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I was the last one awake, so I sat in the middle of the family room, in the glow of the Christmas tree, and thanked God for all that He had given me. I said my prayers, and reflected on just how blessed I truly was, to be able to spend a wonderful Christmas with my amazing family.

The kids slept peacefully on Christmas Eve!

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We had to wake them up at 10 AM! They were both so excited to see the presents under the tree! Tired, but excited!

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They discovered a letter from Santa next to the milk and cookies. Grant got the Santa tray in the white elephant exchange, and it works perfectly as Santa cookie tray/milk mug holder! It actually has wheels and takes batteries, but I'm slightly afraid to see what it does!

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Dylan and Lexie wasted no time digging into the gifts from Santa, the gifts from us, and the gifts from each other.

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What I loved most about Christmas this year, was the fact that the kids were so excited to give out presents. Dylan was so proud of the gifts he chose! Daddy loved his puzzle, and I loved my body wash and pouf. They even had gifts for the pets...including the fish and hermit crabs! ;)

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After unwrapping gifts at home, we drove to Grant's parents house to unwrap gifts there. Then back to our house to have brunch with my parents, and exchange gifts with them.

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We have a huge family that tends to spoil the kids. When all the gifts were unwrapped from everybody, Dylan and Lexie had well over 50 gifts each. It was overwhelming, but everything was appropriate and useful. They each got winter boots, Dylan got a lot of games and creative sets (legos, playdoh, moon sand, martian matter maker) to keep him busy, and Lexie got all the older girl toys that she is getting into!

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They really have been keeping busy with their new stuff, and are so thankful for all their gifts.

After my parents left, we got to relax for a few hours before heading to my sister's house for dinner. We never got to do that until this year! We eliminated a visit this year, because all the driving was getting overwhelming.

We had a great time at my sister's house, and dinner was delicious. My mom and brother in law have an ugly gift exchange every year. The recepient of the winning gift has to display it in their house all year long. Somehow, my mom loses every year. This is what she has to display this year. And just for the record, Lexie loves all the ugly gifts she gets. Including this one:

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We went back to Nannie's house to end the night with more food and fun.

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It really was a wonderful Christmas, and I was so blessed to spend it with the people I love most.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!

Merry Christmas Eve!!!

It's only 5:00 PM and we've had a busy day already. We're getting ready to head out for our Christmas Eve festivities!

Today, Dylan and Lexie's picture appeared in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.

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They were so excited to see their picture in the paper!

Here's a link to the article and picture.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09358/1023163-54.stm

We visited my Uncle Mickey this afternoon. He had great gifts for the kids. He's the world's best Great Uncle!

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Lexie and I visited Cherokee, and took him lots of Christmas treats!

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The calendars and Christmas chains have all been counted down!


The reindeer food is ready to be thrown around in the front yard!



The kids are excited, and we are ready to go!

Merry Christmas!