4:10 PM

Merry Christmas: Part I

Friday, December 31, 2010

I'm hoping everyone enjoyed their Christmas as much as we did this year. Starting on Christmas Eve Eve (that's the 23rd, if you we're wondering) begins our three-days of Christmas celebrations and traditions. I love mixing new traditions with some from when B & I we're growing up and we realized this year we actually have a lot of them (and even more we can't do until the kids are a little older!) Yeah, we have talked about it because we just love Christmas that much. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010 

We we're very lucky this year that this begin the first day of vacation for everyone. Since this was a tough year for most (including us) financially we decided to skip the whole "here's your gift and the receipt so you can return it for cash on the 26th" and made everyone goody baskets. (Yes I decorated these basket's from nothing...even the bow. I loved the result!)

We spent the entire day Thursday baking 8 pans of brownies, processing 16 jars of butter (Honey Walnut & Garlic Herb), 4 gigantic batches of buckeyes and 8 loafs of bread. Yummy. Brian is becoming such a kitchen-nut butting into my corner, taking over MY recipes and adding dashes of his own creativity. I love everything but him standing in my darn corner, it's mine and I'm not sharing. We watched Christmas movies and danced around the house with the kids blasting Mariah Carey's infamous Christmas CD. That night the kiddos hang their stocking and the elves make their appearance...

Friday, December 24, 2010

My grandparent's started this tradition with my mom and uncle back in the 1960's. My parent's did it with us... and I love it! All December my Mom & Dad would exclaim suddenly, "Did you see that! It was an Elf... I just know it!" or they'd move stuff around on our dresser and tell us the Elves we're watching for Santa... just to make sure we we're being good. As a reward, you wake up on Christmas Eve morning with stocking's full of goodies...

For us girls, we always got bows, hair clips, nail polish... things to help us get ready for Christmas' Eve festivities. Little man made out with one of those freezer cups, a dinosaur sandwich cutter, Toy Story Fruit Snacks (which he proclaims as, "CANDY!"), a Mickey Mouse magic wash cloth and a book.

We had plans for dinner at my Grandma's with my family that evening so we adjusted the kid's nap time, in hopes of a peaceful evening. 

It didn't work.

Hi, my name is Ericka and I had a Christmas Eve melt-down which included not eating one bite of dinner with my family, tears and breaths that came out in huh-huh-huh's.

Kamryn was set to go down for a nap around 5:30ish for about an hour (this is usually when I'm making dinner so K-man colors & she naps) and every time I tried to take her back I was sucked into the... "just one more minute... wait I didn't get a turn... but she's being soooooo good!" Did I mention Kaleb & Kamryn are the only people under the age of 21 that attend? So after being passed around during her nap time and someone in my extended family insisting they could quiet her down while I listened to her across the basement whining...

I ended up with a SCREAMING baby right smack in the middle of dinner. I excused myself to my grandparent's room in hopes of quieting her down and letting her drift off to sleep. Kaleb, who had been snacking on actual candy they had displayed was full of sugar and wanted NOTHING to do with sitting at the table. Brian missed dinner too, attempting to wrestle our 2 year old away from the candy & breakables without him crying so no one at the table thought he was beating him. 

At this point, Kami is going nuts and it's been well over an hour. Nothing I did worked... she was too upset. Brian came in and tried to switch me but that didn't work either. I took her back and at this point the family is breaking up from dinner and heading down to get ready to open presents. I finally caught a break in the crying when my mom poked her head in and asked if I need help, I shook my head and gave her look of panic, hoping to say if I open my mouth to talk to you she'll freak out again. She backed out...

Five minutes later my Aunt & Grandma poked their heads in asking if I needed help waking the baby and sending her into a full-on melt down. And it reallllllly made me mad, I handed the baby to my mom... made my way to the drive-way and cried my eyes out. Oh, the joys of Christmas.

I took a deep breath, talked to B, headed back in to a quiet house thanks to another 20 minutes of crying with my mom finally getting her to nod off. I did learn one big gigantic lesson, if I would've followed my gut and mother's intuition that told me to take my sweet baby back and lay her down at 5:30 I could've avoided the whole mess. I know my kids and this was so out of the ordinary for our girl. She NEVER shed's a tear, ever. 

I contemplated not writing about this event, blocking it from my mind and pretending it never happened. But it did and when Kamryn's daughter has her Christmas/Easter/Birthday melt-down we can happily read this entry together and laugh. Because at some point or another, your kid is going to do this to you.

We carried on and opened presents and enjoyed the rest of our wonderful Christmas Eve (Yes, wonderful even with the meltdown's)

Before we left for my grandma's...

Kaleb entertaining his sister.

My girl DIGS the pretzels.Yummy.

Kaleb took this picture (Yeah he's good!) and got her to smile like that. She realllly loves him :)

First remote control car... Of course, a huge Ford F150 replica.

He was a natural gift opener :) Sweet boy.

We got home close to midnight. Both kids stayed awake for the 3 minute drive home. We plopped our now giggling baby girl into her crib and she put herself to sleep. I straightened up while B put down Kaleb, telling him the story of The Night Before Christmas and that when he woke Santa would have left him prizes.

Brian & I stayed up until 2:00 am arranging the tree and furniture and camera... And of course the BIG GUY himself made an appearance and added to our gifts.

Most of those gifts we're for K-man, as Kamryn doesn't understand at all what is going on this year. We enjoyed a glass of wine together and just knew our kids would have us up at the crack of dawn to open gifts...