I had to work on Christmas Eve. So I got up really early and left the house at 6:30am, before the kids were even up. Bob, our elf, had left the kids a "goodbye" note, saying he was headed back to the North Pole that night. He had brought them each one gift to open early, so they were excited about that. work wasn't too bad, it was actually busier the day before. The last 2 hours or so dragged by, I was so ready to get out of there and head over to my inlaw's house for our get-together.
I met Arnold and the kids over at the inlaw's house. My mother-in-law always cooks a huge lunch on Christmas eve with ham, green beans, mac and cheese, etc etc. And this year she had made yeast rolls too, and they were so yummy! We all ate and then cleaned everything up so we could open presents. The kids were dying to open stuff, and they were passing them all out, and my niece even snuck into her's early ;) She seemed to like everything we got her, so I was happy. The kids were spoiled like usual, with lots of toys, pjs, dress up clothes, and even some cute character underwear and socks ;) Arnold's parents got us a big stack of new towels, which we had asked for. They are so fluffy and soft, and I went home that night and tried one out right after my shower! :) We also got a coffee pot.. 8 years of being married and we have never had one in our home. There is a good reason though, I do NOT drink coffee! Arnold likes it, but not enough for every day. But he did say that he would probably drink more now that he has a coffee pot in our kitchen.
Later that afternoon/evening, Brooke started feeling bad and we gave her some benadryl. That pretty much knocked her on her butt, and she spent the rest of the time resting on the couch under a blanket. So we decided to head home and let Brooke go to sleep. We usually spend Christmas eve night with my parents, but decided to stay at home this year so we would have more time to do stuff as a family. While Brooke slept on the couch, we made some christmas cookies to leave out for Santa. And I read some Christmas books to Rachel and Caleb before they went to sleep. After they finally all passed out around 9pm, we started bringing stuff up from the basement. And it was then I realized that I had bought WAY too many things for the kids this year. I did find a lot of great deals, but it was just too much. We left some stuff downstairs to save for Easter, etc. Then we got started putting stuff together. Arnold was glad to have that coffee pot then! ;) He assembled Brooke's Monster High School all by himself, and I set up Rachel's stuff. Finally around 1am or so we were done, but I was so hyped up and excited that I couldn't sleep. So I decided to clean the hall bathroom. LOL that is being a parent for ya! ;)
We finally got to sleep, and it is a good thing we did, because the kids woke us up at 6:45 the next morning. Thankfully Brooke seemed to be feeling a lot better. They ran into the living room and were so excited over all their stuff. But I think they were a little overwhelmed also, (my fault!) They checked out all their stuff from Santa, and opened their stockings. They got a big kick out of the note Santa left them, and how the cookies were gone and there were just crumbs on the plate (that was actually thanks to Sheldon-- he snuck some cookies while we were busy putting together toys! ;) Anyway, thanks to my Target job this year I was able to get a bunch of stuff for Arnold and surprise him, so he opened his gifts next. He got a Crossroads cd which he then put in the cd player right away and made us listen to the rest of the morning :P By the end of the morning the living room looked like a tornado had gone through it, it was crazy!!!!! We all then got dressed because it was time to head to mom and dad's.
We got over to Mom and Dad's around 11am. Grandpa was there, and so were Alex (my brother) and Bree (his girlfriend) Alex lives in Florida now, and we hardly ever get to see him anymore, so I was SO thrilled he was able to come into town for the holiday! We got set up right away opening gifts. Mom and Dad REALLY spoiled us this year. They got us a space heater, new microwave (our's just bit the dust!) and some MORE new towels! Dad also surprised us with a Best Buy giftcard, which I used to get a keyboard and case for my new ipad mini, and a case for my Canon camera. I was so excited and just couldn't get over all the cool stuff we got. Everything i had been wanting lately. And if that's not enough, Alex and Bree got us some giftcards to go out to eat, and they got me a scarf with OWLS on it! :) Oh yeah.. and I guess the kids were there too ;) they got a lot of new toys and Mom and Dad surprised them with a Power Wheels Jeep that was waiting outside for them. I had also had a red jeep when I was a little girl, and I think my parents were feeling a little nostalgic watching my daughter (my mini me!) ride around in the jeep!!! :) It was COLD outside, but we all managed to get out there to watch the kids ride around. And the boys also tried out the new helicopter Caleb got. After a billion and one tries, they finally got it to fly into the air (and then it crashed.. but at least they got it off the ground! ;) Boys are so silly, and after watching my brother and hubby with that thing, I realize that they never grow up either! :) Anyway, after all that we sat down to a yummy lunch that Mom and Dad made (both my parents are awesome cooks-- and they are upset I didn't inherit that love or skill from them! ;) They made a juicy beef tenderloin, along with potatoes, veggies and rolls. And some pie for dessert which everyone had but me (I am not a fan of pie-- I know I am weird!!)
That evening I didn't even want to go home.. seriously. I knew what was waiting for me there.. a big mess I had to clean up! It took me about 2 days, but I finally got everything cleaned up and organized in the kids' rooms. BUT we have so much trash that it is more than the trash people could take, so now we are backed up and I think we may have a trip to the dump in our future.. every year I say I'm not going to get that much for the kids so that I don't have to deal with the big mess, but every year it happens again! Oh well-- they are only young once, right?!
Hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas!! :)
Bob with his note and presents on Christmas Eve morning
Lunch at the inlaw's house
Brooke and her cousin ready to open presents
Rachel and her Paw. She was playing with a cat toy!
Rachel with her HUGE lollipop from her grandparents, and some new stuff she got
This is how Brooke looked all evening on Christmas Eve. She was OUT from that medicine! Poor girl! Sheldon stayed by her side though! ;)
Santa came to our house!!!
Arnold put all this together, and it is harder than it looks! I promise!
Rachel's stuff-- including the Calico Critters house I held onto for months!!
Caleb's stuff-- good thing about legos is that HE is supposed to put them together! ;)
Opening gifts early in the morning!
Caleb got a bb gun! This makes me nervous! But Arnold is excited for the "father/son" bonding time, as he tells me ;)
Playing with their new baby! Rachel was freaked out at first! Alex's gf was freaked out by it too.. it really does look soooo real!
My cute hubby wearing the new shirt I got him!
Dad thought the Obama TP was hilarious! I knew it! He said "I will use this!" haha! ;)
The kids trying out their new jeep.
The guys outside-- finally got the helicopter to fly!!!