This has been the first year in a few that we have been home "alone" for Christmas. I have to admit, I was not at all dreading it! I cancelled everything routine on the schedule for the whole week and planned a week-long staycation. It's been fabulous so far (except for a few sick kids... but what can you do.)
The big kids had a half-day Friday so we kicked off Christmas break that afternoon. Saturday night we drove to Philly to have dinner with a bunch of my extended family on my dad's side. It was so nice to catch up with relatives I haven't seen in months! And they have the best old family traditions-- a big family feast, reading the Christmas story, lighting real candles on the tree while listening to Silent Night sung in German by an Austrian opera singer, and of course, caroling. My uncle Fred plays the organ amazingly well and he leads us in singing all our favorites. For someone like me, who adores family & traditions & holiday magic, it is a night simply dripping with goodness.
The past week Dan and I have sat around talking and drinking coffee for several hours.
Hallie spent several hours over 3 days helping neighbor moms out with their babies.
Our boys shoveled our neighbors sidewalks and they & Hallie drove the ATVs all over our yard and woods for hours in the snow.
Olivia had a nasty cough and cracked herself up every time she got to tell someone she had the "coffees". She also watched Alvin & the Chipmunks on repeat. You can imagine how I feel about that. ha!
I cooked & baked a ton! Cookies, muffins, soups, you name it. Somehow it's so much more fun when we have no schedule and I can be in the kitchen when I feel like it, making what I feel like. haha!
I am currently reading 4 books (Swing Time, At First Sight, The Secret Keeper and All the Ugly and Wonderful Things) and I'd really like to finish at least one before the new year. haha. I've been reading a lot this week but really... is there ever enough reading time?!
We watched a bunch of movies this week. We all watched Arthur Christmas, Elf, The Polar Express, and What About Bob. Dan and I watched Sully with the older three. The boys and Dan & two friends watched The Magnificent Seven. The kids watched Storks (on Vid Angel-- before it got taken down last night! Ugh!) We usually watch maybe one movie a week, so this was quite the week for screen time around here. It didn't help that Olivia and Will were both pretty sick and low on energy going into the week, so no one wanted to do too much.
I'm a big NY's resolution girl, so I'll be reviewing my list from last year and making new ones soon... I guess I'll post about that next week. :) I think a grand total of two people read this blog, but... I hope everyone reading this has a blessed year ahead-- with grace to deal with our struggles and mercy for those in our lives who are struggling as well.