Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

Over the past few years, we've started a tradition of spending Christmas Eve at home with just the five of us.  This year, especially, we felt like the days and weeks leading up to Christmas had us on the go, so we were all looking forward to relaxing at home and spending time together on Christmas Eve. 

Unfortunately, upon realization that being on the go had me very behind on laundry, we spent the majority of the morning washing and folding clothes.  However, I had four happy helpers (or...basically...four very eager people who could barely wait to open Christmas presents) and we were able to get the job done in no time. 

We had decided that after Olivia's nap time we would open Christmas presents.  So...right as the clock hit 3:00 pm, Zach and Allie were in Olivia's room to wake her up.

A groggy Olivia headed out into the living room where we opened the last door on our advent calendar and lit ALL the candles on the advent wreath. 

The kids took turns each day in December opening the doors and on Christmas Eve it was Olivia's turn. 

Olivia was so excited that we finally had Baby Jesus to complete our Nativity.

I was surprised that by Christmas all three kids could remember what each advent candle stood for:  Hope, Love, Joy, Peace, and the middle candle for Jesus!

After reading our last scripture reference to go along with our advent calendar, it was time to blow out the candles and open presents:  Happy Birthday, Jesus!

We made sure to pose by the Christmas tree for a few photos before we began.
Zach got his Happy Birthday Jesus party hat at the AWANA birthday party for Jesus celebration and he wore it almost non-stop leading up until Christmas!

Then, when the kids could contain their excitement no more, we began opening presents.

I wish I would have been video recording this next segment of photos.  For three months straight Zach has been asking for a Lego Fire Airplane...not in a begging or whining way, just when asked what he would like for a gift, Zach would always respond:  "A Lego Fire Airplane."  Even though we did not originally get him a Lego Fire airplane (we shopped early and thought he would probably lose interest in the airplane by Christmas time anyway...but, no such luck), I'm sure glad that we returned a previously purchased gift in exchange for his most wanted item.  Seriously, the squeels and look on his face when he realized what was in the package:  priceless. 

I had already talked Ben into giving me my present early, but there were a few gifts under the tree for him.  A work survival kit and a motion sensored candy dish for his office!

All three kids were thrilled with their new robes and fact, they have been wearing them every moment we have been home since Christmas Eve.

Olivia has also been pretty thrilled with her new baby doll (with HAIR!) and matching dress.
The aftermath looked a little something like this...not too bad.
We spent the rest of the evening, after dinner, putting together Lego sets and helping the big kids get the hang of their new Leap Pads.  Olivia was thrilled to sit with her doll and have her new bear read her books (we got her a Leapfrog Tag system that interacts with board books). 
Then, believe it or not, I think we all went to bed early!  We were exhausted...and also excited to continue our celebrations the next day!

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