Every year we travel to visit our extended family over Christmas and that equates us celebrating our small family Christmas early. Now that Riley and I have been married seven years, and the girls are getting older, it's been fun creating traditions of our own. While growing up I loved baking huge batches of cookies with my dad, and then delivering them to all of our neighbors nights before Christmas. I've enjoyed carrying this tradition over to my family and my girls love it too. Last night we delivered our cookies to neighbors via a wagon ride with hot chocolate in tote. This year Ellie insisted on being the one to hold the packages, ring the doorbells, and give out the "Merry Christmas" greeting. After our cookie delivery escapade, Riley made a fire in the fireplace, we opened our stocking stuffers and ate lots of appetizer treats. We read the Christmas story and went to bed. When the girls woke early this morning their stockings were filled with candy from Santa & lo-and-behold, the donuts left out for Santa had all been eaten. We sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and blew out his candle a'top the cranberry muffin, and then shared breakfast together. We, then, took turns opening the gifts under the tree. Our last activity was sending the girls on a scavenger hunt to find their final gift, and this was an event Riley remembers as a child. Ellie quickly caught onto the concept of "clues" and "scavenger hunt" and Saedi was doing her best to keep up. I'm sure next year we'll add a few more traditions, but we've got our collection started. It's easy to get caught up in the fun & hullabaloo of Christmas, but I'm proud that my girls understand that Christmas is about giving...just as Jesus was born on earth to give us life.
Making the fire
The girls experimenting on me with their new doctor's kit
Finding the final gift...a mini-tramp!