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Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Recap

Pre-Christmas
Since my brother Aaron wasn't going to be with us on Christmas day (again), we celebrated with him and Chelsea a few days early. Ping pong was played, dinner was eaten, carols were sung, and presents were opened. We draw names between siblings, and I made a clock from an old record for Aaron to go with music lessons we donated in his name through World Vision*. Chelsea drew my name, and she gave me a super cute brown scarf, dangly earrings, and some little sewing scissors.
*We decided to do gift-giving a little differently this year. We made a donation to World Vision in specific areas that we felt would be meaningful to the recipient. In addition to the donation though, we gave a smaller gift that tied in with the donation.

Afterward, Aaron and Chelsea joined us to go to Prairie Lights so Avery could experience the wonder of the drive-through light park. She didn't think it was so wonderful. We tried to make the most of it anyway.


Christmas Eve
One of my favorite traditions is my parents' Christmas Eve get-together. They've hosted friends and family for a big tamale pig-out for as long as I can remember. This year was crowded with over 40 people stopping by for the festivities, but Avery had a blast making new friends and entertaining whoever would pay attention to her.While she was making her rounds, we were too busy conversing with friends to take more than one picture.
Avery's new friend; thanks, Mr. Ral!
We're continuing my family's Christmas Eve pajama tradition, and Avery opened her new pjs before we left so she could wear them home and go straight to bed. She was so cute in them!

Christmas Day
We spent the first part of morning at home as a family. We actually had to wake Avery up so we could have enough time before we left for my parents'.

Avery's had a blast discovering her unwrapped gifts, a shopping cart and a sit 'n spin. She also got to open pretend fruit and play doh. She cracked us up unwrapping her presents because she would take off a little bit of paper and insist on throwing it in the trash. We had to bring a trash bag to her just so she could finish opening her gifts.

Since our cruise is our Christmas (and anniversary and birthday...) present to each other, Matt and I did a homemade Christmas. I made an awesome calendar for Matt (okay, and I cheated and got him boring stuff too like underwear and socks, but he needed those anyway, haha!). He made me a coupon book full of free diaper changes and house cleaning and girly movie dates. I loved it!

We spent the rest of the day with my family. We busted our butts to get there before 9, but Nick and Allison weren't even awake. We finally dragged them to the living room for stockings before we had our traditional breakfast of baked french toast and orange julius. I restrained myself and only drank one glass of the yumminess.
Presents come after breakfast! Avery did get spoiled, but I was proud of my parents for not going too crazy. :) She got a wagon (which she believes is her new playroom, haha), a book, a see 'n say (and a mini one), a Little People house set, a Cabbage Patch doll, and a pretend cell phone.

Matt and I were totally spoiled, too. My parents did a really good job of picking out things that we needed (i.e. new sheets and jumper cables, haha!) along with some fun things, too. Matt also got the Lord of the Rings trilogy and a Chick-Fil-A gift card from Allison, and he gave Nick an ESPN magazine subscription to go along with a World Vision basketball donation. (For the record, we gave my parents cool water bottles with a donation to CauseLife.

Ral, a friend from church, joined us for lunch, and my mom tried to smoke us out of the house. Haha, I love my mom's cooking, and she decided that this year, after discovering last year that none of us really like having ham, she would make Reata steaks. These particular steaks were pan seared, but they ended up being so smoky that we had to unplug the smoke detectors and open the windows (brrr). It was completely worth it though because they were delicious! She still made her special green beans, potato casserole, and blueberry jello salad (don't knock it) though. Did I mention I love her cooking? I'm totally scared to be weighed at my doctor's appointment this week.

We all spent the rest of the day hanging out, jamming with guitars (the boys), playing games (the girls), and enjoying the Christmas Eve tamale leftover spread for dinner. Mom even gave me a lesson in fabric cutting with a pattern so I can start my first official sewing project. Yippee!

It was a relatively quiet Christmas, but the quiet was nice.

Post-Christmas
Speaking of quiet, apparently most of our typical church-goers were either out of town or on a Christmas hangover. Church (especially Sunday School) was SO empty. I found it a tad ironic, seeing as how the entire point of the holiday is Christ's birth, but let's not go there. Matt's parents got here that afternoon, and we had a delicious dinner at Genghis Grill before coming home to exchange gifts.

Avery was spoiled even more, but she loves her new animal magnets, play food, and Dora the Explorer Power Wheels trike. Well, she's not completely sure about the trike yet, but she likes to make it go as long as she's not on it. Haha, she'll get there. Aunt Carrie gave her a kid-sized mp3 player (complete with a microphone!), and Avery's already attached to it. She loves pushing buttons on cd players and choosing which songs she listens to, so this was a perfect alternative to her ruining cds!
Avery loves her Nene and Pop-Pop!
Carrie surprised Matt and me with Texas Rangers jerseys (can't wait until opening day!), and Matt's parents surprised us with a very generous gift as well. Needless to say, we felt so completely (pardon the cliche) blessed this year.

Today was official cookie decorating day, complete with matching mommy/daughter aprons that Nene brought!
 

Avery just has the best grandparents (and aunts and uncles!), and we're so thankful for both of our families.

Our holiday has already been amazing and full of great memories, and the best part is that it's not even over. Matt and I will celebrate our 4th anniversary this week before heading to Austin to celebrate New Years Eve with the (former, obviously) roomies.

1 comment:

joyceandnorm said...

Too much fun! Love the matching aprons. The clock is super cool.