Sunday, January 16, 2011

December and "Christmas Eve"

I almost called this post something else, because I'm embarrassed to have "Christmas Eve" show up on people's blog readers on January 16th. But I didn't.
My birthday.
We drove through McDonald's for dinner and baked a chocolate sheet cake together.
It was exactly what I wanted to do.
We decorated our Christmas tree.
We went to a Branch Christmas party.
We baked. And baked.
And baked some more.
(always new recipes though, which takes longer. I think I'm ready to pick a few and make them regulars.)
We made gingerbread houses.
We played with friends.
In lots and lots and lots of snow.
We exchanged names with each other and shopped for Christmas gifts.
We listened to Christmas music.
It always seems so hectic and stressful, December, but in memory it's all happiness and love.
During December we always promise that next year we will skip all the traditions that require all the work, and just relax and spend time together.
Then, we change our minds.
What would it be like without all the traditions?
What would our children remember?
What would bring them back together when they were all grown up and gone?
Anyway, we've got another eleven months to think about that.
So, for Christmas Eve, we were invited to our neighbors' for their traditional fondue party (which was awesome and delicious).
We still wanted to have our own Christmas Eve traditions, so we decided to do them on Christmas Eve Day Eve. Or the night before Christmas Eve.
We ate our ham from the commissary, some potatoes, some corn, some orange rolls, and some slush.
We read from Luke and acted out the Nativity.
We didn't feel up to the Moscow traffic to see what few lights we could, so we went for a walk and went sledding instead. Finding a few lights in the process. And when we came home...
New pajamas under the tree!!!
But this wasn't real Christmas Eve.
I wonder if there will be presents in the morning... we better leave some cookies and milk, just in case...
And what do you know!...
there were! Early Christmas!
This is our 1) something we want, 2) something we need, 3) something we can do together as a family. Oh, and a couple of years ago we also started adding 4) something to read.
And I always take a picture of all our presents under the tree. Do you do that? I think I do it because it's obvious that someone spent a lot of time thinking about and coordinating the gift wrapping for those things. I can't imagine who it could be...
And besides...
Check out the wrapping paper. I was a little disappointed that it wasn't red and green, but it's pretty darn cute (and from Ikea. Did your Ikea have this wrapping paper? Or is this Russian style?).
So early Christmas.
Find out more next time.
Same bat... well, I don't know what time, but same bat channel.

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