Because of other family gatherings, we decided to do "our" family Christmas on the morning of December 23rd. We had breakfast with my parents and sister on the morning of the 24th, and we traveled down to southeastern Missouri that night to awake with Josh's extended family on the morning of the 25th. So a few days early was what we decided to do for just us.
The night before I spent time wrapping presents. Yes, I always wait until the night before. I'm not sure why I do it this way. I guess I just like looking at each gift one last time and then strategically placing them under the tree so that the kids can unwrap them in a certain order. We have a "three gift rule" with our kids (which I meant to write about earlier in the month but didn't get around to it). I also put three small gifts in their stockings (probably $1 or $2 each...you know...just little things). I picked up on that concept from an author who said she did this because Jesus received three gifts...so that should be enough for each of them, too. It also kept the author (and certainly helps me) from going overboard on spending.
I also redecorated our tree so that the kids would have a decent-looking tree to see when the awoke! You may recall that half of it was ornament-free because of Gabriel. Well...I wanted to change that, even if it didn't last long after they all woke up. (I didn't even notice until I looked at this picture that a section of lights were out...Josh fixed it.)
Then they proceeded to peek into their stockings...
Then each of them enjoyed opening their gifts...
It was a really nice morning, and I loved seeing how surprised they were with each gift. They were so sweet to thank us after each one; the sincerity in their little voices just blessed me so much.
I hope each of you had a very blessed Christmas as well!
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