Thursday, January 16, 2014

Christmas 2013

Is there ever a more exciting day than Christmas morning?  I absolutely love waking up with that expectancy of a day filled with wonderful feelings- gifts, yes- but family, friends, FOOD, all the talking and excitement.  As a parent, I love Christmas morning even more.  This year we woke up at my parents on Christmas.  Uncle J and Aunt Tori were also there.  It was fun to have so many people get to experience the boys' excitement with us.

As I said before, Hudson was very into the excitement of Christmas.  This was the first year he really "got" Santa, wrote him a letter, was in awe of meeting him.  I knew that he would be really fun to watch this year.  Let me also say, that at this beautiful age, they still sleep in and don't wake up during the wee hours of  morning.  I am thankful for that.

Santa had set up both Hudson and Beau's gifts just from him, put together and ready to be played with.  Hudson got a Geotrax remote control train, which he loved and would refer to as the Polar Express! *meltmyheart* And our little fearless Beau received a little Kawasaki four-wheeler.

Andrew and I always struggle with this but then when Christmas morning comes around we are thankful we did it.  We are firm believers in making Christmas about Christ's birth, how it changed our relationship with God forever and how it is such a huge part of our faith.  That being said, we love Santa, the North Pole and all the magic that goes along with the season too.  In order to create balance, Andrew and I choose to limit the gifts the boys get.  They get one gift from Santa, a few gifts from Andrew and I, a few shared gifts like games or movies, and some things in their stockings.  Our boys don't want for anything.  It is a struggle in this commercial driven society not to cave and think we aren't giving our kids enough, but a couple of gifts in and our kids were content.  They weren't even that aware that they still had a few unopened gifts.  If you have ever wondered about doing something like this in your family, I highly encourage it.  

Our boys also received half the cast of Toy Story from Andrew and I.  They loved watching these movies over the summer.  It was fun to see them play with them together.  We also got them a few child hood favorites of ours; games that we remember playing with our families.  

After present opening, we were starved.  I had prepped some french toast casserole and had it baking while the boys opened presents.  How I ever survived before Pinterest is beyond  me! It was so nice to have a yummy, warm breakfast together with  no one having to miss out on the action in the living room because they were busy in the kitchen. So SO good!
I used this recipe.

Beau who had barely napped the day before, made it through breakfast, getting dressed and then zonked out! He was so tired, bless his heart! My other brother, Zach, his wife, Rachel and my nephews Graham and Emmett arrived about mid-morning.  Graham and Hudson are about 4 months apart and Beau and Emmett 7 months apart.  And as you can imagine, all boys so close together can be oh-so-crazy but FUN!!

A few years ago we decided to opt out of doing a traditional Christmas dinner.  It seemed that everyone got enough of that on Thanksgiving, and again, who wants to spend so much time in the kitchen.  Now we all bring sides and desserts and appetizers and my mom usually makes a couple of easy simple main dishes that we all eat on throughout the day.  It is comfort food at it's finest! I also love the variety of the meal! We decided to open presents and have a late lunch since the boys didn't seem to be hungry and Beau was still sleeping away. (By the way--that dude napped almost 4 hours that day! That is a record in this house!)

Hudson getting some Emmett cuddles before the opening ensued. 

Hudson and Graham loved watching everyone open, seeing what the other got.  My grandparents were there too.  So many people I love in one room.  I adore the holidays! 

I said earlier that Hudson and Beau got half the cast.  They did not have Woody or Bullseye. Little did they know that Gammy and Papa would be adding them to their collection.  Hudson's face was priceless.  He was so ecstatic!
Please just take a moment to soak in his excitement.

It was seriously a present opening free for all.  Beau did get to join us on the tail end but he was so interested in the ripped paper and boxes that Andrew and I opened most of this gifts for him! With Hudson's help of course!

Sweet Emmett with Uncle J and Aunt Tori

Can you see the chaos in the room? LOL

We were all seriously starved after the present opening.  I loved getting to sit and talk with my grandparents, laugh with my siblings, and watch my boys play with my parents. I soak in those moments and the details as much as I can.  It all goes so quickly but I want to remember it forever.

After everyone left, Hudson napped and, well, Andrew and I let our food settle.  

Later that night Beau was tired and not going to make it doing anything, so Andrew cuddled him while my parents and I took Hudson to see Frozen (again!) jammie-clad and all! It was the perfect way to end our Christmas!

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Hi! Welcome to this crazy life! Thanks for stopping by! I love hearing from my readers and connecting with you all! Xoxo~Bekah