New town, new traditions.
Christmas Eve lunch at our house.
Afterwards, we went to a special Christmas Eve service and living Nativity. They actually bring animals into the service as they read the account of Jesus's birth. Next year, we'll send a few adults early to save us some seats up front. The girls were bummed they couldn't see the animals better but they were really bummed they couldn't see "Baby Jesus." After the service, we went outside to see the manger animals. There were highland cattle, sheep, goats, a donkey and a camel. Years ago, I attended this service and they were able to bring the camel in the church too. He's too tall now.
On Christmas morning, we opened this set of blocks and played together for most of the morning. We're still establishing traditions with the girls and I don't know if we'll even get to the big pile of presents thing. We never bought much for the boys because we had so many relatives buying stuff for them. Thankfully, my side of the family has stopped exchanging presents.
Mike's mom still likes to shop for the kids so we typically open some of their gifts the day after Christmas. Then we went skating and brought my niece home with us. Her birthday is the day after Christmas. "The easiest to remember and the easiest to forget," her mom said. She loves the fruit and veggie creations and so we looked around to make one for her. Apple, Cuties, twisty candles and toothpicks. :)
A couple of weeks ago, I came to speak to her Girl Scout group about caring for curly hair. After they saw Ana's yarn twists, they all wants one. So, I did one twist in each girl's hair. My niece wanted me to put her all her hair in yarn twists. She was a little shocked by how a head-full of red yarn twists looked. They looked a little better all pulled back but she still didn't want me to show her face. She was going bowling with her family after she left my house. I texted my sister-in-law and told her she might want a hat. She left them in for about a week.
The official family party for my side was on Friday night. I was a little worried about how we would all fit at my mom's. The last few times, I had been there it felt like we were all tripping over each other and that wasn't even including my cousin and her five kids. But it went really well.
My cousin and I talked about getting together the next day for sliding at her mom's house. So in the morning, as I was getting ready to go, I sent a text to my mom, sister and sister-in-law, "I'm heading to [my aunt and uncle's] to go sliding if anybody wants to meet us." My mom's response was, "Should I bring skis?"
When my cousin's husband got back from hunting with their oldest son he said, "I didn't know we were having a sliding party." She said, "I didn't either." Ha ha! Good times! Great memories! We kept the party outdoors and headed home when everyone was getting cold and hungry.
Sofia found something to eat.
Here's me making a point to get in front of the camera on occasion.
Tali is so TWO these days. We're hoping her disposition will magically change when she turns three next month.
Mike's been on vacation mostly since Tyler got home on the 21st. It been fun and I've started lots of messy projects. Now I need to start getting serious and put the house back in order for when he goes back to work on Monday. It's been a great holiday season and I can hardly believe it's almost over.