Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas 2016

I'm a few days late in posting, but I figure since it's because I was spending time with family enjoying the holiday that I should be forgiven. :)

We had an awesome Christmas Eve this year. It was our time to just be together as a family of 7 and it was a blast! We started off our morning with our own little tradition...we always have Toaster Strudel for Christmas breakfast. I'm not exactly sure how this one got started, but everyone looks forward to them. Besides, who doesn't like a pastry hot out of the toaster smothered in frosting?

Christmas Eve service was at 3 so we changed out of our jammies mere minutes before leaving and enjoyed a packed service. Pastor Nate made the story come alive by involving the audience and it's amazing to see how the kids have retold it over and over. What a great way to get kids into it and engaged.

After the service, we spent the next 2.5 hours making all the appetizers. Every year I think "Next year...we need to make something different...because this takes forever to make all these things!!" BUT the kids love it so much that I always cave and go through the craziness all over again the next year. And now...well...now we can't depart from tradition so I guess it's here to stay.

Appetizer Menu 2016:
Sesame crackers with goat cheese
Pickle dogs
Buffalo chicken ring
shrimp cocktail
Fruit with marshmallow dip (pineapple, strawberries, and bananas)
Veggie pizza
Cheese curds
Artichoke dip with wheat thins
Mixed Olives
Antipasto skewers (salami, fresh mozzarella, and grape tomato)
Curried chicken salad

Sparkling cider

Following supper and clean-up, we got out the advent calendar and finished it up. This year Ella had a lego advent calendar so we did our traditional one as well as the lego one. Everyone had so much fun with them. And Hattie even got to put Baby Jesus in the manger this year. It was Ben's turn, but with a wave of sweetness, he offered it up to Hattie.

Here is a little sampling of the kids. We (I mean "me")  *may* have lost our minds and bought Hattie a giant teddy bear. I'm certain I will regret this for many years to come.

Everyone seems to like it. It gets hauled all over the house.

 This is a hat handmade by Lily for Hattie. Lily was super proud of her accomplishment, Hattie loved it, and I was blown away at how much she resembles Jason's preschool age pics.

Christmas Day morning was spent at Nana's house. We arrived to a brunch ready to be eaten, lots of presents, and Christmas cookies. Christmas mornings are always so rushed and never seem to last long enough before it's time to go.

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