The weekend before Christmas we had parties to go to. Saturday we went to Bill's cousin's house for his family party and the kids had a blast! There were 15 kids between the four cousins and they are all about the same age with the exception of 1, who is the oldest of course. Originally we weren't going to be able to make it because Hannah was supposed to have a soccer game but it was cancelled and so we decided to go. We don't see Bill's family all that often so it was really nice to see everyone and we all had a great time.
On Sunday we had our annual "Rick mas". It's a get together with some of Bill's friends at their former boss' house (from when they were teenagers) whose name is Rick! We have Home Run Inn pizza and dessert and all the kids get a present. We hardly ever see Rick so it's nice to get together with him and we always have fun at his house.
This year our actual Christmas holiday was wonderful because we didn't have to run around like crazy people trying to get to every one's house on time or force the kids to open presents (doesn't that sound awful!?!?) Normally we spend Christmas Eve with my grandparents and my aunts and uncles then split Christmas day between opening presents at our house in the morning and then heading to my mom's for lunch and gifts with them and heading back to end with dinner and gifts with my in-laws. I don't think I have to tell you what a pain the behind that was and man was it a trick to keep the kids from getting grumpy!! Anyway, this year my grandma wasn't up to a family get together because she had just gotten out of a rehab facility after recovering from pneumonia and she was still pretty weak, so we (meaning my two aunts and their families and two of my four uncles and their families) headed to my mom's house for Christmas Eve. Everything turned out really nice and we had a pretty laid back night.
There were only three kids there and they were so good about not trying to peek at the presents. They didn't even go near them until we said it was time to open them which was shocking because when my cousins and I were little you couldn't keep us away from the tree!
After everyone left Bill, the kids and I stayed and opened presents with my mom, dad and sister. We figured that since we were already going to be there it'd be silly to go back the following day and that way were were free to do other things Christmas afternoon. It was a really late night for the kids - we didn't leave until 1:00 am - but they held up really well.
On Christmas morning we got to sleep in a little bit. We woke up to Hannah excitedly jumping into our bed telling us that Santa had come and left presents and ate almost all of the cookies that we left and the reindeer ate the celery and carrots that we left out for them. With that we all headed into the front room to open gifts. They didn't get too much stuff this year but they got a lot of electronics. I'm afraid that my kids are going to be gadget freaks like their father but in this day and age that's almost inevitable! They got a few toys and lots of games for their game systems (Leapster and vsmile things, they're too small for a Wii or anything like that) and some computer games, books and puzzles all of which they LOVE!
The kids checking out some of their gifts
Later in the afternoon we went to my sister-in-law's house for dinner. she decided to keep dinner simple so we had steaks and au gratin potatoes and lots of other yummy stuff. After dinner we opened gifts and then just sat back and relaxed as the kids ran around and played.
In front of the tree again!
All in all, we had a great Christmas. There was no stress for Bill and I and we got to enjoy the holiday with everyone without rushing around like a bunch of crazies. Of course, I'm still glad that we don't have to do it again until next year!!