Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas Eve & Day 2011

Christmas is so much fun with a toddler!! (I LOVE his shirt that says "Dad's Greatest Gift" Now isn't that the truth?! He is definitely my greatest gift too!)
Since we're in the military and we're going to be continuing this nomadic lifestyle for the next, oh, 14 years or so...JT and I decided as a family that we want to do Christmases at our home. Wherever that home may be, so at least that will always be a constant for the kids in their constantly changing lives. (With the exception of CJ's first Christmas last year that we did in SC with the grandparents. But we figured he was too little to remember that one.) CJ was so lucky that his Oma & Grandpa (my parents) were able to fly out and be here for Christmas this year.

On Christmas Eve my Mom and I baked several different types of cookies. JT and my Dad watched football and did a little last minute shopping. We tried a new church for Christmas Eve service, because it was within walking distance from our house. They had live animals: camels, sheep and a cow. CJ LOVED that!
And because it was the "family service" we kept CJ with us. He did really great, and enjoyed getting to walk hay up to Jesus' cradle. Our little angel:
When we got home from church, we followed my family's tradition of having seafood on Christmas Eve. I made us Shrimp & Grits. (And I chose this also because I thought the green and red peppers made the dish all the more festive! I am a dork.)
This year we started a NEW tradition for our family. When I was growing up, I ALWAYS wanted to open a present on Christmas Eve. I remember my sister and I begging our parents. Well, every year the kids will get to open the family game for the year, that we will play together that night. Since CJ is still a little young to play a "structured" game with rules, our game this year was Memory Match. CJ had a blast just playing with the cards! :)
Opening his stocking from Santa on Christmas morning!
CJ was SOOO spoiled this year. I honestly can't think of many toys that this kid doesn't own. I'm glad baby sister is on her way to help teach some sharing and also because then I can start getting rid of extra "baby toys" we've been saving. CJ did a great job of savoring each present. If it was a book he would flip through the pages until we took it away to encourage moving on the the next present. He wanted to play with all the toys and seemed excited by everything he got. We are so thankful for our generous family and friends who love our sweet boy so much.
His favorite present was a Mack Truck that is also a carrying case for cars. It came with 15 cars. He hasn't stopped playing with it! Putting the cars in and out, vrooming Mack around the living room, and of course lining up cars!
I didn't get a picture of Christmas dinner, but we had Honeybaked Ham, mashed potatoes, asparagus, squash casserole & rolls. Our cutie on Christmas!
CJ got bath crayons in his stocking and REALLY enjoyed "color"ing in the tub! (I'll have to ask Dada how much he enjoyed cleaning the tub afterwards).
We had a GREAT Christmas this year! I can't believe next year we'll have two kiddos to celebrate with!

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