The last couple years, we have celebrated solstice and traveled to North Carolina to see Rob's family on Christmas day. I love traveling on Christmas day because no one is one the roads and even the crazy long drive (14-ish hours) is fun with the whole family, including the dog, in a rental van. This year we had this crazy cough thing and Parker performed in his first adult play, Miracle on 34th Street (8 performances over two weeks around the holidays). We've also had a ton of snow already so the roads would not have been fun, especially through the mountains. We needed to stay home.
My sister and her husband loaned us this adorbs tree. It is over 20 years old and it was perfect. I love a living tree so much better than an artificial one and we have never been into cutting down a real tree. It is kind of Charlie Brown-ish and many of our ornaments were too heavy, but the kids didn't really care. They even loaned us a special light since the tree didn't get much light in our house. As you can see, we don't do tons of presents. The kids always say they pretty much have everything they need/want.
Josie does her part as the youngest and gets everyone in the holiday mood.
Parker opened up his new camera. Josie feigns surprise after opening up the earrings she picked out for herself.
Parker opened a Dr. Who game from our new favorite hang-out, The Gaming Goat. Josie puts on her bling and Dema opened his book (the second in the Magic Zero series).
Parker and his new Buddha statue from International Galleries, shopping there always reminds me of my mom.
Dema bought presents for us this year. His school has a little "store" around Christmas for the kids to pick up gifts for their family. He did an excellent job finding something for each of us and he was so excited. Rob is opening up a coffee mug with Dema's artwork on the side. Dema bought him a book light too.
Josie saw this coffee at the co-op and recognized our friend, the Prairie Monk, and said we had to buy it for Rob.
Josie showing off her earrings (also from International Galleries) and the headband Dema bought for her at the his school's holiday store.
Of course, they got a little chocolate as well.
And maybe a sucker. Josie is super happy after winning a game with her brothers.
The guys all intent on their game of Timeline (Dema's gift from The Gaming Goat).
Fun and educational!
My sister gave me this pot with hard to kill plants for my birthday in November. It is a present that keeps of giving and it bloomed over the holiday.
My sister also came by with a bunch of games and other presents for the kids. The games are from another new game store in town, Dr. G's BrainWorks. They love all the games and the boys are really enjoying the logic puzzle books she bought them. I love logic puzzles too so we've had a great time doing some together. Our awesome neighbors, Vicky and Greg and Margie and Rick all gave the kids sweet gifts too. We are so fortunate to have suck sweet people in our lives. We had an awesome time the day after Christmas at Ricky and Catharine's Boxing Day party and then another party with more great neighbors at Scott and Deborah's house. Except for the coughing, it was a fabulous holiday break at home. We really missed seeing Rob's family and the kids were especially sad about not seeing their cousin, Lillian. They only have one cousin and she has never come to visit us so they were really heartbroken we didn't go, but we'll get down there in the summer.