Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Christmas Eve Eve

       In our family, Christmas actually starts on the 23rd with our Christmas Eve Eve celebration.  Growing up, we always celebrated Christmas Eve with my dad's side of the family.  In recent years, we have changed the date to the 23rd so that more people can come.  I love it that we can make it every year (we switch off Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with our families) and because it stretches the celebration into three days.  
     A lot of the married grand kids came home this year which brought our total to something like 41 people!  We had our traditional chili dinner and everybody pitched in with the food.  My super organized grandmother sent out an email a couple of weeks before hand giving everybody their assignments.  My favorite part of the email was where she totaled up the people and then said, "So, Darrel (my uncle hosting) that will be thirty five people needing chairs.  Let us know if you need anybody to bring some."  35 chairs, like it's no big deal.  Who has thirty five chairs laying around?  It's like hosting a church party. 
   Of those 41 people, 21 were children 10 and under.  Darrel and Holly are such accommodating hosts and we were all grateful to them for inviting us into their home.  They have six kids of their own, so it's very kid friendly and my kids love going there.  We ate dinner, had a program where each family had a chance to sing a song, share a thought, or perform something.  We then played games and ended the evening with the big Seahawks game playing that Darrel had recorded and visiting.  It was a really nice night.         

Mason getting ready to watch the program.
Mallory and I's kids were going to sing a song, but Little Man had a hard time holding it together and kept on bursting out laughing which got his sister started (poor Annablle was trying so hard to sing).  He used to love performing, but is starting to get to the age where he feels self conscious about things.  Mallory and I did not plan Josh and Mason's outfits (baby Issac was also matching).  Completely on our own without ever talking about it, we had went to Fred Meyer and picked out the exact same Christmas outfits for our boys!
Mason's new picture face.
The first game consisted of each team dressing one member up like a Christmas tree.  Whoever got the loudest cheer won.  If you know my extended family at all, this caused some serious cheering during the judging section.

Uncle Doug cheering and representing his team as a tree at the same time.
Sweet Paula is such a good sport.  

All the trees lined up.
For the next round, teams were given a pair of nylons, balloons, and some string to transform one lucky member into a reindeer.

Here I am shamelessly using our unborn child to try and win votes.  I like to think my claim to be the only one with a baby reindeer secured my team the victory.

The last game had consisted of any willing children being transformed into Santa Claus.  Both Little Man and Kiwi were for it, but Mason wanted no part of it.

One of my many unsuccessful attempts to get an almost impossible shot of all the little kids on the couch.

When we left at nearly 9:30 it was snowing a little bit outside which only added to the excitement and magic of our first day of Christmas.  As we drove home down the same highway my parents used to drive us home on when I was a kid from Christmas Eve I had one of those full circle moments.  I remember how excited my siblings and I would be on that drive home listening to Christmas music, cozy and wam in our van and as I glanced back at my three children, I felt so grateful that they will hopefully have some of the same memories.  

1 comment:

  1. Oh I am so out of the loop with you and your blog! I can NOT believe how much your kids have grown just since June/July. Hope you are doing well! I'm going to see if I can get up to speed on your blog here. :O)