Merry Christmas, everybody!
I hope your day was "merry and bright" because mine certainly was! Christmas morning is always a magical time at our house... I look forward to creating my own Christmas-morning-traditions someday in my own home with my own family, but I know I will look back wistfully at these times. :)
Our family has opened gifts every-which-way over the years... We've opened gifts all at once, we've opened each gift one at a time, and now gifts just sort of get opened. :) One positive change we've made is that in the past, my father always videotaped Christmas morning, which I'm sure we'll all be glad for in the future, but set him apart from us when we wanted to share the fun of presents with him. Last year we requested that we not have any videotaping on Christmas morning, and he agreed... this year, though nobody discussed it, the videocamera stayed put. I like this much better! :)
We always get some form of reading material on Christmas - books, magazines, etc - and there's usually a mini-pause while we resist the temptation to read everything right then. :)
On to the gifts I gave... these three modern-art-inspired horse prints I picked up at the thrift store for a few dollars apiece (and kept one for myself, lol). This summer/fall, I took the kids on a trip to D.C. and while there, Ruth and I ducked into the art museum together (everybody else pooh-poohed the idea, but Ruth is like me - always open to new ideas and adventure!). We enjoyed spending some time discussing the modern paintings and sculptures, and when I saw these prints I immediately thought of that memory we'd made. Everyone else in the family thought that 1) the paintings were ugly and 2) didn't see much significance in the trip to D.C., but when Ruth opened them on Christmas morning she immediately said, "Oh, these are from our trip to the art museum!" And she loves them. :)
Lizzie is hard to shop for... I picked up this "Cowgirl: Spirit, Spunk, Style" sign at Ross (is there no good thing that cannot be had at Ross?) and was afraid that the design was too "pink" for our tomboy, but Lizzie assured me that the message of the sign outweighed the girliness of its design. :)
I bought the girls these removable wall-stickers for their room last year, but I don't think I've ever seen them on a wall... I was amused yesterday to see their decorating. :)
Allen has asked me for two years now for WiiPlay, so I got him that for Christmas, then I saw this Venus Flytrap plant at the nursery and I just had to get it. A plant that eats flies - what more could a 13 year old boy want?!?
Gifts I gave but neglected to get pictures of: My dad, who is impossible to shop for, got a sentimental picture frame (when in doubt, go for sappy-sweet :)); my mother, who is also impossible to shop for, got a black cotton sweater from Lands End (she spents days each fall hunting for a suitably plain/sturdy black sweater, and I have been incredibly impressed with the quality of Lands End merchandise, so maybe this will end the hunt for a few years); Maggie opened a copy of Jaws and found this poem:
For your gift, you're going "to sea"
But don't worry (much!) 'cuz you're not going deep!
To Camden, New Jersey, we'll go on a lark
If you don't get eaten, then they'll let you stay
To swim next door and feed the rays!
So grab your suit and towel and dash -
This gift is sure to make you splash!
Magge was thrilled and excited about her adventure! :)
On to gifts I got...
Okay, by far the most incredible gift I got this year was this moon sculpture that lights up and goes through the stages of waxing and waning. I love it! I am obsessed with the night sky and I love moongazing, and now I can have a piece of my passion right in the room with me! Of course, this was my gift from Maggie, who always knows exactly what to get me. :) The wrapping itself was a work of art - she wrapped it in white tissue paper with silver stars, and put it in a silver bag. :) Can't wait to put it up!
The kids went in together and got me this home spa kit, which I had hinted about multiple times. :) I can manage a DIY pedicure, but there is just no substitute for sticking your feet into a hot bubbling massaging footbath. :) I used this last night after we came home from our family celebration and just about died of ecstasy...