For the past several years we have hosted christmas eve at our tiny house. Growing up my parents always hosted christmas eve and it is one tradition that I would love to keep going for my family. So even with a small house and an ever expanding family (there are 5 grandkids now!) we still host. I love it. It is such a special night to me, being surrounded by family and all the festive decor. This year we had the usual group of Red's family which adds up to 10 adults and 3 kids! Plus me, Red and our kids. Then we invited our closest friends Brian and Lee Ann, who have two kids. Then Lee Ann's parents decided to visit from Boston-and her sister! Then Barb asked if her nephew could come too and I said why not!?? The more the merrier of course. This was when I decided that I would do the least work possible and get mexican food, serve margaritas and ask people to bring sides. It was perfect. We moved some furniture, borrowed a huge table from Red's brother and his wife and made it work. We sat 18 adults at 2 tables. The kids had their own table but they thought it was more fun to make a fort with the tablecloth than actually eat. Barb and I had a guac-off. We tied. We had so many appetizers and so much food! Before we sat down for dinner we got a huge surprise. Santa stopped by! His sleigh had broken down and he needed a battery! He came in and gave the kids some candy and little gifts, talked to Nolan about Ulysses our Elf and then took his battery and was off. Santa was played perfectly by Red's brother MT. It was one of the many highlights of the night. The kids were just in awe. Nolan thinks he "saved christmas" and will tell anyone who asks.
We had a great dinner, then did our "yankee swap" with gifts under $15-they could be funny, inappropriate, useful anything really. The first gift that was opened was the Richard Simmons sweating to the oldies DVD. I picked batteries, but they got stolen and I ended up with a Hello Kitty Chia pet. So much fun. Nolan ended up with a bank shaped like a poop. too much. Then we played "left right enter" a dice game played with dollar bills. Nolan won the first round ($54!) and we all chanted "put it in the poop!" which was hilarious but I guess you had to be there.
I loved having my house full of people-all of whom I consider to be my family. I just wish I had taken more pictures. Christmas morning I heard Nolan run out to the tree and then run into our room where he exclaimed "santa didnt come!" Then he climbed in bed with us and went back to sleep.
After we did presents at home we headed to Red's moms place and had more gifts there...along with a delicious breakfast. The dinner at Kevin and Marthas with Reds cousins and other extended family. It was a wonderful couple of days. And now it is over-just like that. I swear it just goes by faster and faster.
|Nolan and his skateboard from Santa|
|Avery was having fun too on christmas morning!|
|one of the tables on christmas eve...see the mini sombreros?|
|our pretty tree with all the gifts ready|
|the other table...|