We had a wonderfully drawn-out Christmas this year. We celebrated with all sorts of family and friends on many of the 10 days of our trip to MN.
It was M3's first Christmas!
She loved being passed from relative to relative. And she loved wrapping paper and new toys.
M.G. and M2 impressed me with their behavior. At least now, a month later, I can't remember any major difficulties. We threw their routine out the window from day 1 of the trip, but that is part of the fun of vacation.
We spent some of our time staying with each set of Grandparents. We were so very excited that Uncle Dave, Aunt Nissa, and Hank stayed at my parents' condo when we were there too!
We had a lovely dinner on Christmas Eve with my parents, Dave, and Nissa. We went to Christmas Eve Mass at the basilica. The service started at 8:30 PM, well after the kids' bedtimes, and all three fell asleep by the end. But they enjoyed the special music, incense, and decorations too.
Santa found us in Minnesota...
(M2 insisted on the hats. He put them next to his pillow before bed and made sure M.G. didn't leave the bedroom without hers.)
We celebrated Christmas day with Grandma and Grandpa M. and some extended family. The kids found the perfect way to end the day. (Enjoying the broadcast of a fireplace on TV in the dark and singing, loudly, along to the accompanying Christmas music.)We had family gatherings on the 26th, 27th, and 1st too.
Papa and I even had the chance to leave (all!) the kids with Grandma and Grandpa M for a couple hours out on New Year's Eve! (We were home by 10:30... but... it was still a fun time out with friends.)
M.G. and M2 had a lot of fun with cousins.
All that partying was hard work! M3 was helping me open her gifts one minute...
but had enough just a few minutes later! She fell asleep mid-gift! M2 also noticed the effects and we were able to get him to nap nearly every day we were there.
We really enjoyed the festivities this year. Seeing our family and friends is the reason we go back for the holidays. And now we also are able to watch the kids forming relationships with the people we love.
We made good use of the down time on this trip. There was a lot of time to play with new toys,
read new books,
and relax together.
The kids were able to play outside on many days. There was some pretty snow fall, but not enough to ruin any plans. I fit in a few coffee walks, excursions without the kids, and one-on-one time with each of them. We had so much good food on the trip and lots of laughter - enough, anyway, to make any fussy times fade. Even the short car trips between events were small occasions and little chances for the 5 of us to have some nuclear family time.
It was a very merry Christmas!