Wednesday, January 6, 2016


I need to get my memories down on paper before it's Valentine's Day and I forget them all. We had a great Christmas this year! The boys have always been excited about Christmas, but it was just HUGE this year for them and I'm so thankful for that.

On Christmas Eve our tradition is {normally} to go to our church's Christmas Eve service and then have Christmas Eve with Mom and some of her friends. On the years we were with Mom for Christmas Eve, that's what we always did so we did this every other year. When we lived in Perry the tradition died out for us for a few years {when James was two-three} because we wanted to have Christmas morning in our own home. Now that we live much closer to "home" we spend Christmas again with the same people that I did growing up. Last year it was a little bit crazy because we tend to go to the early service {4:30} but those with grown children like the later service better. So we wound up waiting around for a while last year between church and the "party" and then it was late and our kids were wound up and blah, blah, blah...Eddie boycotted it this year. BUT THEN {gah, this is the longest story ever that wasn't even supposed to be a story} Melissa {the daughter of one of mom's friends - her sister Mary Beth was my college roommate...Melissa is Anna and John's age...we've known her forever} said it wouldn't be Christmas if we didn't do it and what if we just did it with us and them. So we did. We had Christmas Eve supper at Mom's house with my four, John, Kayla, Mom, Mrs. Lynn, Mr. George, and Melissa. It was so nice!

All of my friends were posting these beautiful photos of their children on Instagram and I was like, here's ours! This is on the church lawn, by the way. There were probably 100 people milling around. #whosekidsarethose

James tracked Santa on Norad's Santa tracker ALL night long. He kept informing random people where Santa was. The excitement was OFF THE CHARTS. At one point we were trying to gather things up to leave and he shouted, "There's no time to waste!" HA! Boy was PUMPED. Eddie and I put them in their jammies and planned to drive and look at Christmas lights until they fell asleep. Will did fall asleep and was out for the evening, James was WAY! TOO! EXCITED! to sleep! FINALLY he fell asleep and we could go to bed so that Santa could come!

Santa {tries} to go small in our house. We figure we're going to get 1,000,000 toys from so we ask Santa to bring three things. In this case the boys each got a set of Legos {the Raptor Rampage was the hit of the show!} and they got a Wii U and Paw Patroller to share. He also brought books and stuffed their stockings to the brim!

On Christmas morning, I set my alarm at 6AM to get up and start breakfast (I made monkey bread in the crockpot and Kayla brought a hash brown casserole over). I was back in bed by 6:15 or 6:20 but by 6:30 someone was bouncing off the walls. We finally woke Will up a little before 7AM and let them see what Santa brought.

I got a selfie stick in my stocking so we have a lot of pictures similar to the following:

After we played with what Santa brought we opened our presents to each other. James gave Will a trapeze for the swing set, Will gave James a telescope for the swing set, and we gave the boys a football goal post for the back yard. I made a big push for OUTSIDE toys this year.

Around 8, Kayla and John, Cacky, Grandmama and Granddaddy, and Kelly and David all came over to see what Santa brought. We had a little impromptu breakfast. If we do that again next year I'll try to remember to have more!

After we showered and got ready we made our way over to Eddie's parents for Round 2. The boys got a basketball goal as their big gift over there. #outsidetoys I got the Uggs featured in the ONLY picture I took while we were there. How sad is that? Those Uggs have been on my feet 24/7 since Christmas Day. I take them off when I leave the house or shower and that's about it! They're so cozy and I didn't realize what I'd been missing! We had a fun, laid back Christmas afternoon eating and opening gifts.

The day after Christmas Dad and Laura came down to our house to spend the day. John, Anna, Kayla, Lance, and Merritt all came over. We opened gifts first because the boys (who had opened 1,000,000 by this point) were too excited to stand it. Eddie scored a Big Green Egg that we are looking forward to using! He has it pulled into the garage until he gets a chance to stain it. We've been looking at all sorts of Big Green Egg recipes online, but send us your favorite if you have one! James also got an awesome toy called Snap Circuits. I highly recommend it for all kids. It comes with a book of diagrams for building different circuits that make lights come on or doorbells ring (on the toy, not in your house) and James has had the best time with it. It says 8 and up, but he's able to do it by himself for the most part. I'm not sure I could.

We had soup for lunch and then everyone stuck around for boston butt for supper and Papa and YaYa spent the night. Because Christmas weekend is a whirlwind, we ate breakfast with Papa and YaYa Sunday morning and then went to Mom's for ANOTHER Christmas. 

We gave Merritt a hand sewn cloth baby doll dressed in Minnie Mouse ears. I told her it was her own Minnie Cate and apparently she's a pretty big fan. Anna said she got mad at her the other day because she wanted to chew on her ears and they wouldn't stay in her mouth, but for the most part their relationship seems pretty solid. I will be tickled if she loves her. Anna was worried about her loving the doll TOO much, but I will just get another if that's the case so that she can be rotated. :) 

I have to work pretty hard for this girl's smiles and when my phone is out she won't do it. She has her mama's very stoic face. When Anna was little she would give you a death stare. Merritt seems to be following in her footsteps! HA! Will is constantly asking why Merritt is mad.

Both boys got UGA uniforms at Cacky's. I suggested she get those even though Will is digging in his heels at being a Georgia fan. I'll support my children's decisions for a lot of things, but being a Florida fan is not something I can support. Sadly, Will is determined to make all of us crazy and insists he likes the Gators. He opened his uniform and told Cacky he didn't want it. So James opened his and IMMEDIATELY suited up. Cacky told Will she'd be happy to return it for an FSU uniform (random side story is that we were FSU fans first *gasp!*...we grew up going to FSU games, not UGA games...and Eddie used to be a HUGE FSU fan before Bobby Bowden retired so FSU is something we are certainly ok with). He agreed to get an FSU uniform until he saw James dressed and he decided he wanted to be "wike Names." So we have two Georgia football players in our house A LOT. James even fell asleep in uniform with his helmet that night. 

Christmas was fun this year! It was pretty chaotic, but that's just what it is, right? I STILL have my {undecorated} tree out and a ton to put away, but it will get put away at some point. I may only put my tree and stockings out next year and Bah-humbug the rest.

Hopefully I will update a few more things on the blog today so be on the lookout!

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