Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas 2011

He came! He came! Santa...he came!

We didn't discover that Santa had come until well after 8:30 - in the morning! I think this might be the very last Christmas morning Court and I aren't roused from our beds before dawn and boy did we enjoy that little bit of extra sleep!
Helping ...  I mean all that wine drinking, music listening and preparing waiting really tuckers you out! So  as I tell myself every year...next year I've got to be more organized...but onto the merry making!

Elife - our incredibly generous Elf on the Shelf - left little notes for girls...

...as well as some chocolate treats all the way from the North Pole!! We won't see him until next December!

Then it was off to see if Santa like the cookies we left him! But first Grace got distracted by the one gift from Santa that he didn't wrap...

She calls it her hopper ball and it was a BIG hit! 

Our Christmas morning tradition is a bit different than most and definitely most different from what I did as a kid. Trying to mesh traditions from two families is always challenging but even more so when those two families have such different traditions. So Court and I are doing our best to mesh the things most important to us. So here is how we do it.

Wake up.
Open stockings.
Take a break for breakfast. 
Shower and Dress.
Presents are opened one at a time and there is a lot of stopping and starting because during all this a Christmas meal has to be made AND the little ones usually require a nap. 
Most people are in jaw dropping shock when they hear this is how we do it because again it isn't how most people do it and it isn't the way I did it as a kid! We'll see how this "evolves" over time but the best thing about it that Christmas lasts ALL DAY LONG! It isn't over in five minutes! It lasts ALL DAY LONG!

Looks like Santa ate all the cookies AND filled our stockings!


Charlotte was just mesmerized by everything!
The presents, the cookies, the chocolate! She loved it!

Grace opening the pink and purple fairies she has been asking for for months!
Wow! Santa really does listen!

Stocking opened and overall magic making officially made, it was time for a fire and our traditional bread dough pancakes for breakfast! Mmmmm!

We also noticed that Santa's reindeer ate all of our yummy handmade reindeer food. How could we tell you ask?

They left behind some evidence.

Each year, we each get one ornament that commemorates the year. Grace gets one. Charlotte gets one and  Court and I get one. My parents started this traditions for me and my siblings. When we get older (i.e. move out on our own where we have our own tree to decorate) we are given our collection of ornaments - 20 or so! Because you know those first few years of having your own tree are pretty sparse. You don't have lights, ornaments, a topper - nothing! So my parents gave us a head start on our Christmas ornament collection and so I am doing the same for Grace and Charlotte.

This is this year's ornament. A flamingo to remind us of our unforgettable trip to Miami in the spring of 2011. (Mazel Tov Tarin and Tom!) Unfortunately, I could only find two of these little buggers...but maybe the Easter bunny will track one down for me and Court! ;)

Finally, after all the gifts from family, friends and Santa were opened it was time for Grace's special gift from Mommy and Daddy.

Grace got a doll house which she has already racked up hours of good old fashioned imaginative play! 

And little Miss Charlotte got her first car!

As you can see, we are going to have to have a talk with her about texting and driving!!
What does Oprah say? 
Arrive alive. Don't text and drive?
Well, Charlotte this will be your first driving lesson!

I didn't take any pictures of our meal. But it turned out well! I tried a new turkey recipe from Ina Garten -the Barefoot Contessa herself...and our conclusion? We won't be making it in the future! It wasn't bad...just not outstandingly delcious.
We'll be sticking to brined turkeys! Much moister and much tastier!

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