There was something so magical about Christmas this year. Maybe it's the ages of my kids (7, 5, 2 and 20 months), or their innocent child-like belief, or maybe it's just the wonders the season holds. Whatever it was, Christmas at our home this year was so sweet!
Christmas Eve day was a whirlwind of activity. Shopping, baking, cooking, sewing and wrapping filled each hour of the day. That evening though, we attended the candle light Christmas Eve service at our church. It's one of the most beautiful services of the year and I was so grateful to be there. I, for one, needed an opportunity to quiet my soul and re-focus my heart on the true reason for this season! I left there feeling truly refreshed and encouraged-- ready to celebrate my precious Saviors birthday!
Corban actually participated in the services this year.
He played one of the wise men in the children's nativity.
He was very excited to be involved and took his role VERY seriously!
He made one ADORABLE wise man--don't ya think!?!?
After the service, we headed over to my parents house where the celebrating commenced!
We had such a FUN time!
Appetizers and desserts were on the menu for the night.
Everything was DELICIOUS!
We ate way too much, tore into lots of brightly wrapped packages, and laughed until it hurt!
It was simply wonderful.
Riley kept track on the computer, and gave us hourly updates as to where Santa was on his route around the world.
He was so excited about Santa's upcoming arrival!
Before long it was time to get into our cozy Christmas pj's and head home!
Wait- but first a pic of all the precious grand-babies in their Christmas attire!
Look at all those sweet toes!
When we got home, everyone was quickly in bed, dreaming about the surprises that awaited them under the tree in the morning!
Corban woke up around 4am, took a peek downstairs, and then came into our room exclaiming that Santa HAD indeed come. He insisted on waking everyone up, but we vetoed that idea. We were able to convince him to climb back into bed with us and go back to sleep for a few more hours.
Thankfully, he obliged!
Finally, seven o'clock rolled around, and everyone was up!
It was present time!
The first one to find the pickle hiding on the tree is the first one to open a gift.
This year Corban found it first!
The kids seriously couldn't tear into their gifts fast enough!
We tried to bring order to the chaos, but it just wasn't happening.
Paper, bows, and toy packaging were flying everywhere.
Shane and I sat back and watched, trying to soak in the moment!!
Corban made Shane and I this adorable Panther plate at school!
He was so excited for us to open it!
Sophie, by far, was the most animated as she opened her gifts.
She was full of WOWS and OOHS and AAHS as she tore into each presents.
After each gift was opened, she immediately wanted to play with her new toy.
Her tiara and earrings were one of the first gifts she tore into.
She proudly adorned those new accessories the rest of the day. Santa also brought her a princess baby doll.
It was true love at first sight!
Oh, how I adore this girl!!!
The kids were entertained with their new toys, while Shane and I made breakfast.
Cinnamon french toast, eggs, bacon, and fruit were on our morning menu.
Before digging in, we lit a candle and sang "Happy Birthday" to baby Jesus!
Another sweet moment I want to cherish!
After a major cleaning up was ordered, the kids spent the rest of the day attempting to try out ALL their Christmas loot!
Christmas evening, we hosted Shane's mom, step-dad, brother, and sister-in-law for dinner. Of course, much to my kids amazement, there were more gifts to tear into, more wrapping paper flying, more insane toy packaging to try and open, and YES...more mess to clean up.
But, more importantly, there were more smiles of joy, more giggles of delight, and more sweet memories for us to cherish!
My heart is so full!
What a wonderful Christmas!