We had a fantastic Christmas. I got a camera on Black Friday, but I am not a great at carrying it and actually taking pictures. (Maybe that should be my new years resolution.) I do want to take a moment to recap December though. Some of the highlights of the month include: Going to Temple Square to the “I am a Child of God” display and the lights, The Joy School Christmas Program, spending time with my sister Cathie’s family who was in from Alaska, playing in the snow, and of course the holidays.
Going to Temple Square –
Those of you who know me well know that being home more than a day without going out makes me crazy. I had read on a friend’s blog about the “I am a Child of God” display at the church history museum on Temple Square. I decided to hitch a ride with Josh and take the kids to Temple Square while he was at meetings in SLC. It was a great decision. We had a fantastic time. I had no idea how kid oriented the second floor of the Church History Museum could be. They had people stationed in each room doing crafts and telling stories for the kids. (This may have just been for the holidays.) We were the only ones there and received so much attention. The kids loved it. I think it is so worthwhile to have outings like that. The kids probably wont remember, but who they become is based on these formative years so even though the wont remember it will become a part of them.
The Joy School Christmas Program –
I am a huge fan of Joy School. My great experience is based in part on the fact that the moms I share the teaching responsibilities with are so awesome. We had a neat little Christmas Program and get together. The kids sang so well. Caleb has grown up so much sense last year. He participated, sang out, did the actions without a moments hesitation. I was very proud of him. The kids sang so well that Santa even came at the end of the program and made a group of preschoolers very happy.
Spending time with my sister Cathie’s family who was in from Alaska –
We all love spending time with the Coombs family. The kids have such a fantastic time together, and Josh and I have a great time with Cathie and Keith. I even stayed at my moms house while the Coombs family was in town so that we could all be together.
Emi used to say that she and Cara weren't cousins, but she now admits that they are, in fact, they get along great.
Colter and Caleb (if you can't tell) playing dress-up.
Playing in the snow –
I guess I live in the right place because I really like having a white Christmas. With the help of some serious adults the kids made an awesome snow fort and Cody even launched rockets in the snow for everyone. The kids loved riding on the sleds behind the four-wheeler and the horse (who wouldn’t). I think sledding behind something is the only way to go sense it requires no hiking.
I am so grateful that we are close to family and don’t have to spend our holidays traveling. We always spend Christmas Eve with my family, Christmas Morning at our home, and Christmas Day with Josh’s family. I love that we get to spend time with both families and Santa gets to come to our house.
Christmas Eve was awesome! The kids had a great time out side with the sleds and we even had a couple of snowmobiles to keep the big boys happy. As always mom prepared an incredible ham dinner, and she and Christie went crazy buying gifts for the kids. Josh and I gave Cathie some homemade jewelry (my hobby in December) and Cody a car emergency kit. Cody and Step gave me some darling, long, long sleeve shirts, just what I wanted, and Cathie and Keith gave Josh a helicopter, just what he wanted. The kids each got a couple of costumes from Mom and Christie. I can’t think of a better kid gift. Dressing up seems to be something the kids never tire of.
Santa did find us on Christmas morning. Caleb initially wanted transformers, but when he learned that Isaac was asking for a Clone Wars Storm Trooper Helmet he changed his order. Santa had to make some last minute switches, but Caleb got just what he asked for. Cara wanted my little ponies and Andy go a little thing to lay under and play with. Josh asked for a yoga mat, and I asked for hubcaps. (When I got my tires replaced this month in order to pass the state safety inspection they had to break of two of the hubcaps.) I was totally surprised when there was a full size shelf reliance shelf under the tree. (They are those rolling shelves to organize your food storage.) I have had my eye on them for years. Everyone got just what they had asked for.
For Christmas this year the Kirks had decided to not exchange gifts but instead to do Christmas for another family. Sara and Christina headed up gathering many of the things that the family was in need of. I was totally surprise at the wonderful gifts we received from Josh’s sisters even though “we weren’t exchanging.” April got us all nice name brand sweatshirts, and Christina went all out and got us a Wii. We were totally spoiled. My arm is currently stiff from playing the sports games over New Years.
The highlight of this Christmas for me has been enjoying my little ones. It has been especially fun to have Andy. He is such a sweet baby. I have thoroughly enjoyed sleeping him under the tree and using the tree lights as his night-light. I have loved holding him and talking to him. He is a fantastic smiler and always "sings along" when I sing to him. I have loved the excitement in the eyes of my kids and the cute way that Cara says Santa. She and Caleb are excited about absolutely everything. We got free Mickey Mouse snow globes on black Friday that we put in the kid’s stockings. When Caleb saw his he very cheerfully said, "Oh, it's beautiful! Cara do you want it." This year really was a very Merry Christmas!