One of things that I am learning in this new season of life... as empty nesters... is to not have expectations. But we all know that even when we think we don't, we do. But I gotta tell ya, Christmas far surpassed whatever expectations I did or thought I did not have. It was truly one of the best.
The festivities began on Christmas Eve when our son Shawn and his family arrived... followed by our daughter Miranda and son Tyler. While putting the finishing touches on our traditional Christmas meal of spiral ham, raisin sauce, scalloped potatoes and rosemary rolls... I was fully aware that my husband and son Tyler were engaged in discussing the latest C.S. Lewis book that Tyler was reading... Nicole was nursing my new granddaughter Elsie before meal time... Emolyn was showing her Aunt Miranda her new pink Sketchers with sparkles that Santa brought her earlier in the day (that I was trying to capture as she danced in the above pic)... and Shawn was getting drinks for everyone and as usual, making us laugh.
These precious moments had already far exceeded any expectations I may have had.
After dessert we opened presents. Oh, and btw, my dessert was a big hit. Who knew? I took my gingerbread cut-out cookies and made ice cream sandwiches... using Dreyer's egg nog ice cream. So yummy good! I had frozen them days before and the cookies remained nice and crispy, and the egg nog ice cream was the perfect compliment to the spice cookies.
Then Randy turned on the video camera, passed out the presents and we commenced to opening the gifts to and from Shawn & Nicole. We will open the rest on Christmas morning.
Shawn & Nicole gave each of us baskets of homemade edible gifts and let me tell you- sooo amazing! We're talking chocolate and carmel sauces, canned roasted red peppers, blue cheese butter (which they recommended on grilled steaks), chocolate pistachio biscotti, canned applesauce, apricot jams, beef jerky, dried apple slices, decadent truffles and homemade soaps. I know!
But wait, there's even more... my own custom stationery from Tiny Prints, a framed photo of Emolyn & Elsie with Santa. And a beautiful necklace.
Emolyn's gifts had a Disney theme. So fun watching her put on Ariel's aqua flowy gown, Jasmine sparkly slippers, Pocahontus costume and Little Mermaid furry slippers.
When all the gifts were opened, we had to clear the floor for the big gift. And I mean BIG gift.
Randy & I bought this Tinker Bell Fairy House, thinking it would be perfect for Emolyn & Elsie. I wasn't even sure they could stand up in it, much less fit anyone else in it.
Well, Randy & I decide to set it up earlier in the day... and we were wrong. So very, very wrong.
Five adults could easily fit inside!! It is seriously HUMUNGOUS!
How cute is the yellow plastic lantern and Disney fleece blankets!
Emolyn loves her purple Tinker Bell blanket
and Elsie will love her aqua Cinderella blanket.
Like I said, big enough for the whole kit 'n caboodle!
Emolyn & Elsie are going to love pretending and napping and doing whatever else little girls do.
Before Shawn, Nicole & the girls headed home,
we all piled in their van and drove around looking at lights.
What a wonderful Christmas Eve!
Coming up: Christmas Day.