Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Christmas Report

Well, it's official. We have made it through another Christmas, whirling through the carousel of family gatherings once again.
We started off the trip with Jerry driving while I stuffed our Christmas photos/letters into envelopes so that we could mail them before Christmas. I must say I was very pleased with our photo card this year - I made it with StoryBook Creator Plus and printed it as a photo, so it was very economical for these penny-pinching days.

Our letter just summarized this blog in a scant page, so I won't repost it here - you already have so much more information at your hands!

We arrived at the Foster Sr.'s household on Sunday, and on Monday they and Jerry headed to East Texas, picking up Aaron on the way, to survey some property they are making business plans for. The girls and I went to spend a day with G'G'ma, running errands and making Christmas cookies.

Tuesday morning Maggie woke up with a sore throat and fever. She had just finished antibiotics for strep on Friday, so I was concerned that this could be a recurrence, but after phone tag with the doctor's office, they said it probably wasn't, since she had some strong antibiotics, and they wouldn't assume it was strep. If she needed more antibiotics, we would need to get another strep test. After her initial tylenol wore off, she said her throat was feeling fine, so we decided to try the 'wait and see' approach. Tuesday evening when the rest of the family returned we loaded up and went to my mom's house to begin our two-night stay with them. That night Gracie did something funny that only reinforced the notion that she is my child.

We had pizza, pasta and salad for dinner. There was a tupperware container of black olives on the table that had almost a whole can of olives in it. Gracie asked if she could put some on her salad, so we passed them to her. When she passed it back to Grandma, there were only about four olives left for the rest of us. . .

That's my girl!

Wednesday we pretty much relaxed and got ready for the evening. The girls could hardly wait to see cousin Korbin and play all night. Amy and the kids also arrived from her in-laws, and Will was so much more grown-up and able to play with the rest of the kids, so they all had a blast. By this time, the Christmas germ had moved on to me, so I tried my best to stay away from the baby, but still enjoyed the festivities. We made it back to mom's and got everyone tucked in to await Santa's arrival by 11:00. The kids were all up by 7:40, but we put them in the bedroom watching cartoons to give Brad a chance to arrive and enjoy the morning as well. (He was still at his folks, helping them during his dad's recovery from heart surgery.) The girls were so excited to see what Santa had brought - although they might have been a bit surprised at his practicality this year. The big gift for each was a sleeping bag - a really nice one with a flannel lining and storage bag with their name embroidered on it.

And we found out that our new stockings can hold quite a bit of stuff too!

One of the most fun moments was when the girls opened the gifts they had gotten each other - the webkinz they had told Santa they wanted - they were amazed! The bit hit, literally, of the morning was Will's new drum set. All the kids were fascinated with it - even Carissa!
After breakfast and squeezing everything into the van we made it back to the Foster's where we had a fun time with Mimi, Pepaw, Uncle Aaron and Uncle Larry.

The girls used their new sleeping bags to have a sleepover in the living room with them on the floor and Uncle Aaron in the sofabed.

Friday morning we headed down up the road to Granddaddy and Nana's house where we opened yet more presents (our van was already groaning under the weight!) and wore everyone out playing with cousins and goats.

We got to see Amy Sr. and the Culps. I went with Dad to pick up Amy Sr. - the assisted living center she lives at seems nice, and she seems content there. This time after dinner we played more dominoes, but this time Mexican Train - she didn't seem to care for that as much as regular dominoes.

Saturday I slept in - I was just plumb tuckered out by this time. That afternoon we made cookies. Will was very proud of his green face, and actually consented to give me a kiss so he could get me green too!

By Saturday evening the Christmas germ had moved on to Jerry, so Sunday we skipped church and loaded up the van for the return trip home after getting our energy out with a run around the yard
and a quick tractor ride with Granddaddy. It was around 3:30 by the time we left, so we got a good view of all the Christmas lights they put up in Ardmore when we went through. The girls were disappointed that we didn't get to drive through the actual display - next year we will have to figure out where to go to see the whole thing.

Anyway - so here we are - home again, home again, jiggedy-jig! And now it's a whole 'nother year till we do it again!

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