Although Christmas Eve was my favorite, Christmas day was pretty great too. Santa prepared everything quite well if I do say so myself.2012-12-25 Christmas 67242 I’m sure those little squiggly-writing-because-he’s-so-cold-from-his-sleigh-ride that he writes to each kid sure take a bunch of time:) The second I hear the kids in the morning I’m wide awake.  I have to go join these guys in all their stocking excitement.2012-12-25 Christmas 67244 …which is always in Elle’s room (per tradition).  The kids were wondering aloud what in the world families do where Santa doesn’t drop their stockings off in their rooms when he leaves. What in do they do ‘til the allotted time when they get to wake up their parents? At 7:00 they get to wake us up with caroling on the stairs (except that I’m always actually with them, so they just wake up Dave).  This year Max decided to lead their singing very exuberantly.2012-12-25 Christmas 67250 Poor kids have to do this each year before they get to go into the family room.  2012-12-25 Christmas 67253Poor mom can’t seem to get it in focus. The girls were head-over-heels about their much-needed new bikes.2012-12-25 Christmas 67260(I sure hope Claire doesn’t fall off that huge thing.) …and Max and Elle were completely surprised with their snowboards.2012-12-25 Christmas 672632012-12-25 Christmas 67266 Lu got a princess lego set from Santa.  2012-12-25 Christmas 67269 Elle, as a reward for getting straight A’s, was pretty darn excited about her iPhone we lumped into Christmas.2012-12-25 Christmas 67274 I love Max and Elle’s faces…I’m pretty sure they’ll get straight A’s this semester…they were SO excited for her, it was actually pretty cute.2012-12-25 Christmas 67278All that iPhone hoopla is a post for another day because there is a lot to think about when you give your child a phone.  Dave and I have talked and debated ‘til we were blue in the face about whether it is appropriate and who is responsible enough and what the stipulations are and whether we really should attach rewards for A’s and all that jazz.  We’ve gone back and forth on that, but finally decided that at least for this instance and for these kids of ours, this is the direction we’re going.  Every family is going to come up with a different answer on that one.  Different kids, different situations.  But I do love those faces in that picture… It was time for some new princess night-wear for Lu.2012-12-25 Christmas 672802012-12-25 Christmas 67282 I loved just sitting soaking it all in after everything was unwrapped, even though Dave cleaned up a bunch of the wrapping paper before I could stop him.2012-12-25 Christmas 67284 Then I got busy on the eggs benedict.  Every year for Christmas we have Dave’s parents over for breakfast, but this year they had extra family in town so we were on our own.  I figured it was the perfect year to give the ol’ Eyre eggs benedict tradition another try.  (I gave it a valiant effort for years but it always seemed to be a mess and no one was over the moon about them.)2012-12-25 Christmas 67285 This year I’d love to say that it was amazingly fool-proof and my family carried me out of the kitchen with cheers of pure joy, but it didn’t quite work like that.  I went through 32 eggs to get the five and a half that they actually ate.  I overcooked the first batch, then threw them out, undercooked the second batch, scalded the butter for the hollandaise sauce and then had to throw out that first batch, the second batch worked but by then we only had quite raw eggs to go with it.  2012-12-25 Christmas 67291Oh man, I thought I was a pretty ok chef.  Hmmmm.  Mom, how in the world did you do that all those years for so many of us?? At least we had some good candy to fill us up. Lu played with her new lego sets all morning.2012-12-25 Christmas 67298 (She got Snow White from my parents so those two ladies sure enjoyed getting to know each other.  Although I didn’t get a video this time, Lucy did this all morning.)2012-12-25 Christmas 67301 Nana and Papa came over with an extra gift:2012-12-25 Christmas 67306 It was a Christmas of princesses for this girl. 2012-12-25 Christmas 67307She couldn’t have been happier about that little fact. My fav. Christmas gift was that Claire let me chop off her hair before we headed out for the Nana and Papa Christmas buffet.2012-12-25 Christmas 67309I just love that girl with short hair. Oh and another fav. gift?  Our friends rented out a whole theater so we could all go see Les Miserables. 2012-12-25 iPhone 67232 SO nice not to have to fight the crowds.  We left the little girls with Nana and Papa and soaked that amazing movie right in with our big kids who have all seen the play and loved the music.  I could do a whole post about that show as well, but I’ll just say that despite a few voices I may have switched out, we all loved it.  Left with such tear-smudged cheeks. I still can’t believe it’s all over.  I’m in denial so our decorations are holding out for a little longer until I put everyone to work this weekend transforming our house to be 2013 ready.  We are loving this school break more than I can say (we don’t have to go back to school ‘til Monday).  I have no idea what we will do when we have to start actually going to bed at a decent hour and doing homework again.  Booo. Merry Christmas, one last time 🙂

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  1. You can let your kids know that when I was a little girl Santa left our stockings by the tree. My brother and I HAD to wait until 7am to open them, but we always opened them in our parents room!

    after my parents divorced, the tradition changed to opening stockings first, then breakfast, then we got to open gifts

  2. This reminds me of growing up so much, we had 5 kids, we all lined up youngest to oldest on the stairs and then my Dad let us know when we could go down to see our gifts. Such good memories. I only have one kid so it's a lot different 🙁

  3. So my husband and I went to Les Miz and then my 12 yr old wanted to go with her friends and I wasn't comfortable with her seeing the "Lovely Ladies" portion. It was difficult for ME to watch! Poor Fauntine! My question is…how did Elle and Grace react to it? Did you have to explain things? How did you feel about them watching that part? I love the music and so does me daughter. It's just so hard to watch a scene like that acted out so….realistically!

  4. Santa leaves our stockings with the gifts and the kids all come climb into bed with us until they are all awake. We did that when I was a kid too, but the older we got we just all hung out in my parents room.
    Im jealous your kids are not back in school yet, ours had to go back today, Im not ready for it to be over yet either. Boo!!!

  5. I just found your site through interest. I don't normally post on random peoples sites but you have inspired me in many different ways. Some trying times for this little lady and I have found much comfort in your writing! Thank you for being so honest and real and funny! I think if we were all honest with our trials and triumphs then we could be a better support for each other and Satan couldn't beat us down as mommies doing our best but faking it in many areas to just keep up with our fellow mommies. WHEW! Where did that come from? 😉 Thank you again and I'm so excited to keep reading and feeling inspired! Merry Christmas and A happy New Year to you and yours!!! Suzy J

  6. My dad worked nights at the airport when I was growing up, so we had to wait until he got home at 10am to go downstairs. Luckily Santa also left our stockings upstairs to see us through.

  7. ooohh how fun!!!!!! I love their little faces!
    WOW, how cool to rent out the cinema.. that's so fun.

    yeah for family Christmas time
    oh ps, after my first batch of eggs, It would have been.. cerial anyone ahhahaha .. good for you!!

  8. Wow so many things to relate to with this post! I have been thinking about doing eggs benedict for the last 2 christmases in a row, but so far I haven't been brave enough! I think it will spend this year perfecting it for christmas breakfast next year. Also, my 3 year old loves figurines of any sort (she doesn't have the castle duplo, but she loves her snow white one) and she also calls them her 'guys' (We are Australian, so it's not such a used word here). Finally, it was so refreshing to read about what a big deal the iphone was and to see how down to earth you were with gift buying. A lot of people in the town I live in (right in the mining boom) went crazy! One family bought their 3 and 5 year olds an ipad each!

  9. In the Roman-Catholic church, Christmas time lasts until 2nd of February (presentation of Christ in the temple). Most Germans leave their Christmas decoration at least til 6th of January (Epiphany). So you're just multicultural! 🙂

    Merry Christmas!

  10. Looks like you had a wonderful Christmas! Good for you for trying to make Eggs Benedict – I order it whenever I go out for breakfast but have never been brave enough to make it at home! Hope you have a wonderful 2013!

  11. You wanna know what kids do when they have to wait to even see their stockings? They all get together at ridiculously early hours and send someone in every half hour to ask Mom and Dad if it's time to go down yet. You're probably smart to give them something to take up their time. 🙂

  12. How fun! Your kids are so adorable. I'm so jealous you gave her an iphone for getting straight A's. The only time I mustered anything out of my folks was getting my cartilage pierced from straight A's and then it got infected and closed up anyway. And your house is beautiful!!! And I want to watch Les Mis sooo badly!! I also never had stockings growing up but my husband's family does, so I'm enjoying stockings for the first time in my life at 30. HAHAHA.

  13. Hi Shawni – I would love to see a tutorial (video?) on how you cut your girls' hair. I am having such a hard time finding people who can cut my girls' long hair well (even in a straight line) that don't cost an arm and a leg. I like how Elle's hair has a bit of layers at the bottom, and is not just a blunt cut. I'd love to see how you do that!
    Thanks! Rebekah

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