Christmas was wonderful. The weekend went by much too quickly, and we were trying to spend time with a lot of different people. We survived, despite Ben being sickish. The doctor says a stomach virus combined with a new molar coming in. It meant not a lot of sleep for him or me, and a fairly clingy baby, but he still had many moments full of smiles and joy.
Despite the fact that I was too frazzled to remember my camera (no camera on Ben's first Christmas - BAD mommy), lots of other family members took pictures, so once I get ahold of more of those I will post some here.
We spent Saturday afternoon/evening with Brian's extended family. Ben got to meet one of his great-aunts and cousins for the first time, which was fun. Both kids had a lot of fun being spoiled. From there we headed to my parents' house where the rest of my siblings had already gathered. Since Claire was still very hyper we let her stay up for a little while. When it was time for bed she was willing to give hugs and kisses to everyone except Uncle Jon. But when it was time to say prayers he was the only one who got a special mention in the prayers.
Sunday we had a very yummy breakfast, followed by much loafing. The highlight of the weekend? My mom told Claire to ask Uncle David to go down to the basement and get the nativity so we could put it out. I didn't hear what Claire said to David, or what his smartass reply was, but then she turned to me and said, "Mommy, Uncle David doesn't like Baby Jesus." That one got a lot of laughs from everyone. And he promptly headed to the basement to get the box. Claire tried to fit everyone - camels, kings, shepherds - everyone in the stable. She said it was very windy outside. After the Redskins game and the kids' naps we opened piles of presents, and then had a delicious dinner and dessert.
Christmas morning meant Santa!!! The stockings were full of all kinds of treats. Apparently Santa thought I needed to be cleaner as I got three different kinds of nice-smelling soap in my stocking. We had another scrumptious breakfast, and then it was time to pack up and head to our next (and final stop). As soon as we arrived at Don and Cindy's house Brian took over the cooking, much to Cindy's relief. We ate a tasty dinner, and then opened even more presents! After presents we had dessert and coffee and chit-chatted. After Ben had a "diaper explosion" and then fell asleep on Cindy we decided it was time to head for home. Home sweet home. It only took Brian 13 trips to unload all of the goodies in the car.
Our kids made out like the little bandits that they are. We came home with 43 new books! Actually, two are repeats of books that we already have, but those will just become ones for traveling or that we will keep in a different location in the house. Now I have a lot of organizing to do. How to divide the books between the basement, main floor, and bedrooms, how to organize them in those spaces, where to keep the toys that Claire got that are best played with when Ben is not helping, and which old toys to weed out to make room for the new ones. Any advice?
I hope that everyone else had as wonderful and blessed a Christmas as we did!