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Christmas 2017

January 13, 2018

The night before Christmas the kids snuggled in with Uncle J and Aunt Becca while Grandpa Sanders read The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.

Picture swiped from Becca! (Hidden Adry)

I tucked the kids in bed after story time and Mom, Dad, Suzanne, J, and Rebecca all spent the night with us to enjoy a bright and early Christmas morning with the kids! And the kids- they were up before the sun! We were all absolute Christmas zombies!

 

Dinosaur!

When I crunched the numbers for my Christmas budget this year I came up with $200 total to spend on both of my children. I decided to allocate $150 of it to Adry and $50 to Ella because, frankly, Ella can’t yet tell the difference between a dollar store pony and a brand name My Little Pony. I did my best to stretch the money as far as it could go to make Christmas look and feel as full as possible but I was still a bit nervous that the Christmas morning gift display would not be impressive. My mother helped me and so generously gave “Santa” credit for gifts she bought herself, and I was also able to use some gift cards and early Christmas presents I’d received to fatten things up a bit. After I put the kids to bed and set things up on Christmas Eve, I was more than thrilled to discover that, with everyone’s gifts combined the presents under the tree extended throughout half the living room floor and the coffee table and floor surrounding it were packed full of Santa’s gifts to the kids. (And Eleanor just adored every single dollar store and Target Dollar Spot gift she opened! Haha, as expected! She still carries around that cheap plastic pony with the hair brush it came with as though it’s a prized possession.)

Adry loves getting Reese his annual Christmas doggie treat.

My theory is that kids LOVE Uncle Jacob so much because when he plays with them, he genuinely plays and has fun. I also theorize that every other living being that comes into contact with Jacob ends up adoring him because he finds genuine enjoyment in anything- everything- and it’s contagious.

I mean, he must have plaid mermaids with Ella for half an hour.

Keith’s parents joined us a bit later for the family gift exchange and we spent the rest of the day eating and visiting and resting.

We really missed Matt and Alexz on Christmas Day (they were out of town with Alexz’s family this year), so we did our gift exchange with them on New Year’s Day and, I mean, we couldn’t leave Matt out of the Wookiee shenanigans!

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Christmas Eve 2017

January 6, 2018

I spent the morning of Christmas Eve feeling very blessed and so thankful for time with my girl. She wore nothing but her Santa Claus rattle socks and a Ham puppet on her arm. We played and sang Christmas songs under the light of the Christmas tree.

Later in the afternoon we got all dressed up and went to church service at Delaware Grace where Keith’s dad is now pastoring.

Adry did not wish to join the family photos, so we had to sneak attack when we could.

 

When we got home from church J, Becca, and Reese joined us for the night. <3

 

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Memories Reflected Through Tinsel and Light

Our Annual Trip to Timbuk Farms

This year I kicked off the new Sanders Family Tradition of opening up my modest, humble home as the focal gathering point of the family for the holidays. And you know what? It turns out I actually kind of loved it. Preferred it, even. Granted, I’m not the perfectionist of a hostess that my mother is… But I think she actually preferred having a break as well! And frankly, I’m pretty damn proud. I pulled myself up by the bootstraps, determined to make the most of the circumstances in order to give my children the same kinds of beautiful and wonderful Christmas memories that I have. And I opined that meant carrying on the Timbuk tradition and putting a REAL Canaan Fir Christmas Tree in my living room. So that’s the first thing we did this Christmas season.

Ella loved Santa Claus. She sat and contentedly talked to him. Later, after she picked out her annual tree ornament (a sparkly snowman), she couldn’t wait to run up to him and tap him on the knee to show him.

Then we enjoyed hot chocolate, nachos, popcorn, and candy.

She’s admiring her ornament on the bus on our way out to the Canaan Fir field.

We ended up backtracking and cutting down the first one I saw.

And we spent the rest of the evening listening to Christmas music and decorating.

 

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal