Extremely handsome tree--maybe the finest we've had. So tall that we couldn't put the star on top this year, but that's ok. Mr. Adams has enough merit to go without the star. (And yes, I know that President John Adams was neither extremely handsome nor tall.)
Yesterday we finally opened our presents. (Explanation of why we do this early here, here and here.) It was quite a bit later than we originally planned, but at last we found a date that worked. Unexpectedly, Dave was able to take the whole day off (a big deal for us on the week of Christmas Eve services!), and we had a wonderful time enjoying God's kindness to our family.
I laid off the camera this year so that I could just enjoy my kids enjoying their gifts. (Imagine that!) Hence all these pictures are from after most everything was already opened. Long distance family, know that all of your gifts were received with joy and delight, even if those reactions were not captured! And thank you for your generosity!
Dad and Jan sent new stockings for the kids this year--with their names embroidered thereon, no less!
They also provided all of the stocking stuffers, which was a blessed time saver for Mommy this year. Here is Esme, in her fancy new dress-up slippers, which she calls "buh-fy (butterfly) shoes" and has worn for most her her waking hours since yesterday. (The Hello Kitty t-shirt was Mommy's lone contribution to her stocking.)
Meg and Matthew were thrilled to receive their VERY OWN umbrellas from Mom and Tom. This was a long-held wish finally fulfilled. Simple things, you know?
Grandma Dawn's and Grandpa Tom's "big gift" this year was a wagon. Woah. Happiness. And the kids all fit at once! (For now.)
Daddy with Miss Esme, playing with Matthew's new Nerf gun. Load it...
Shoot it! "Ohhhhhhh, you got me!"
And here are all three with their cool new pen necklaces from Aunty Shanny.
The kids also got to give some presents yesterday. They all wanted to give candy and gum to Daddy, so over the weekend we had picked out some of his favorites, wrapped them up and put them under the tree. Esme was struggling during our shopping expedition, still not fully understanding the concept of picking out gifts for someone else.
But by the time Meg gave Daddy her candy gift yesterday morning, Esme seemed completely on board. She crawled under the tree, pulled out the correct package, and pranced over to hand it to Daddy. David and I were melting all over the living room with how cute and sweet she was, so excited to deliver her gift. He was crooning and kissing Esme, I was choking up... seriously. Dave unwrapped the candy and thanked Esme. Then Matthew came over to investigate. "NO!" said Esme, smacking her brother's hand away and suddenly revealing her true motives. "MINE!"
Well, then Daddy and Mommy dried up in a hurry and had a good laugh at ourselves and our little girl. All of that sweetness was just because she wanted the first taste of Daddy's bounty. Our little angel is just a sinner like us after all.
All the more reason to celebrate the coming of our Jesus at Christmastime...