Unspeakable Joy 2012

Christmas time is here. Families drawing near. Oh that we could always see such spirit through the year.

One of my favorite Christmas songs (from A Charlie Brown Christmas, of course!)…

Yeah, I know it’s February. I’m behind, what can I say.

Matthew and Morgan spend their first Christmas as a married couple in NYC. Am I jealous? Yeah, a bit. I’d so love to go to NYC. Maybe one day…

Back to Christmas. I started what I hope will become a tradition in our family this year. We’ve always read Christmas books and watched Christmas movies and such over the holidays, but this time, I wanted to have a little more organization to it all. I found this link on pinterest about reading a Christmas book each day from December 1 through Christmas Eve. The website has craft stuff as well, but we didn’t do any of that. I didn’t have the exact same books as she did either. I had plenty of books to make it through the whole 24 days. The first book we read was the story of the Elf on the Shelf. If we don’t read that book, then our elf doesn’t come stay with us, and that would be an awful tragedy. So we have to get that one out of the way first. Like I said, we didn’t do any crafts with these. I did, however, wrap them all up individually and numbered them. The only ones I really cared about being in order were numbers 1, 23, and 24. Obviously, the Elf book was number 1. Book number 23 was The Polar Express. We kind of ran out of time with this day, because I had intended to watch it as well, but we didn’t get to do that. I did make my Polar Express Hot Chocolate with this recipe. Super duper rich stuff, if you decide to try it. I did not, however, make my own marshmallows. I may be working on my crafting and baking skills, but I can’t add that one to the list yet. Book number 24 was The Night Before Christmas (of course). We also made sure to read the Christmas story from Luke 2:1-20. We also did a little book where we talked about some of the different names of Jesus. And the kids have their own little Nativity that teaches them about what God really wants for Christmas. My own personal craftiness was tested this time as well. I was tired of my old tree skirt and wanted to buy a new one, but couldn’t really justify spending big money on a tree skirt. So, I found this link on pinterest and decided that I would give it a go with my old one. Unfortunately, my old tree skirt was apparently about 8 inches larger in diameter than the one used by this lady, so I ran out of fabric in a big way. When I went back to the store to buy more, they were out and weren’t going to have any more until AFTER Christmas. I finished up with what I had and went with it. If I hadn’t run out of fabric, it would have looked great. I will say that if you don’t have the time and/or patience to do that type of craft, then don’t even start it. It was SO time consuming. It looks great when it’s all completed, but keeping the burlap from fraying was really hard and I don’t think it will look very good next year. I will probably either buy a brand new one, or look into other ways of creating one on the cheap. Another craft I did this year was making my own mirror garland. There was a link on pinterest (yes, I am slightly obsessed) that mentioned buying little mirror tiles and some silver cord and using hot glue to make a garland. Well, I packed up and went to Michael’s for the mirror tiles. I bought small squares and circles. Then I got my silver cord from Walmart. It was not hard to do this and I made short work of it. The only down side was that our tree ended up being about a foot taller this year than the ones we’ve bought in the past, so I had not made enough to go all the way down the tree. It wasn’t that big of a deal though. Anyway, enough about crafting. On Christmas Eve, we had family come down to our house. My parents, brother, and grandmothers came, as well as the hubs parents and his sister and brother-in-law. It was a pretty large crowd for our small house, but we made it work. It was only for a few hours anyway. We did our normal spread of soups and munchies. Both sets of family left around 4-5 in the evening, which gave us plenty of time to do what we needed to do to prepare for Christmas day and clean up the house some. On Christmas day, we got up, did breakfast and presents and I started cooking my casseroles and then after they were done, we packed up and headed north to my parents’ house. We spent Christmas day with them and left Dylan to stay with them for a few days. Now for pictures!

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