Wednesday, January 5, 2011

All I want for Christmas is...

my boys - with smiles on their faces. I think I got my wish! We had a great Christmas morning - just us. The boys came creeping into our room right at 7am (as they were told no earlier than that) and the stocking-sifting and paper-shredding madness began. Grammy and Papa do their rounds to all the houses to see what happiness has been opened. This year Santa brought an Oregon Ducks hoodie for Cade, a Jaquiz Rogers (OSU) jersey for Ty, knights and a frisbee for Bo, knights for Cole (since he still says whatever his older brother does), and a ball for Luke (like we don't have enough of those!).
Mom and dad scored big smiles for getting the boys a Wii. They were not expecting it at all (since we swore we were going to be a no video-game house) I guess we got soft.

It earned us huge hugs too!
This one was still trying to wake up, but he's holding all he wanted.
This one was in knight heaven. His new love. Papo knight company was loving our house this year.

For a little boy, Christmas morning is simply magical. While we try to make sure our kids remember the real meaning of Christmas - I remind myself to just enjoy this morning and all of the surprise and elation.

We spend a lot of time making sure the Christmas season focused on Christ and giving. We have family nights reviewing the symbols of Christmas and their true meaning. We pick a family and do the 12-days of Christmas where we leave a surprise gift of the doorstep every night leading up to Christmas. We deliver lots of goody trays to friends and neighbors. We read scriptures and stories - I buy a new Christmas book each year. This year I found a favorite in "I Believe in Santa Claus" by Diane G Adamson - A childs Christmas story teaching of Santa and Christ.

We did a couple of new things this year that really added to our Christmas fun - We used the money from the advent calendar (quarters that Grammy puts in each drawer to go along with a candy for each day) and the boys picked out gifts for each other at the dollar store. (An idea I got from a friend's blog) It was a great outing to help fill one of their Holiday vacation afternoons. But it was also really fun to see how much thought and care they each took trying to find the perfect present for each other. They went up and down isles stewing and thinking - it was cute to see what they finally decided on - and cuter to see them try to keep their baskets secret from each other and hurry home to wrap each item themselves. Since it was so inexpensive, I was able to totally refrain from my controlling nature and let them do it. They made sure I knew that they want to do this every year. A lot was added to Christmas morning when each boy got to feel more personally the joy that comes from giving. I also borrowed a "tradition idea" a friend once shared with me - each boy got a box of their favorite breakfast cereal (the ones I will never buy during the year except for camping of Black Butte trips). They were so excited to eat breakfast, we had to remind them there were still presents to unwrap. It was just another simple way to make Christmas memorable.

We spent the rest of the morning skype-ing out-of-town family. Then we headed up for Grammy and Papa's for a huge brunch and huge round 2 of presents. The day was filled with cousins playing, parents visiting and napping. Then we finished off with eating all the yummy left-overs from Christmas Eve dinner. After we were stuffed full and tired, we traveled home happy and filled with the Spirit of Christmas. It truly is the best time of the year.


Jaimy said...

You have no idea how good your post made me feel! I also swore we would never, ever have video games in our home. But we also caved and got our boys an Xbox this year. But I do have to say it was worth their enormous smiles. I guess I learned to never say never, right?! :) And it's been kinda nice having them entertain themselves so much . . .