Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Christmas day was just a beautiful day.  In every sense of the word.  Just getting to be home together as a family and celebrate Jesus' birth was more than I could have ever asked for.  We just enjoyed every single minute of it.  And we stayed in our jammies.  The whole entire day!  Pure bliss.

The best part was when Andrew woke up and came running in our room.  Ga Ga and Papa had stayed overnight too, so they could witness Santa's visit.  My mom said she had to stop him from going downstairs and made him wake us up first (she had strict orders!  Ha!)  So right around 6:45, Andrew scooted down the stairs and saw the tree.  And immediately he did this...
And honestly I could have cried right then and there.  The quality isn't great, my camera was on the wrong setting from the night before and it was still dark outside.  I happened to have it close by me and I snapped this in a split second.  And I'm so glad I did.  It's what I want to remember forever.  Just the pure joy on his little face.  The wonder and excitement.  The innocence of a child.  Santa had come.  Plain and simple.  No questions, just belief in magic.  Be still my heart!
We then ran over to see if the cookies were gone (as I was stalling him, waiting for daddy and Papa to rise!)  He found some crumbs, an empty glass of milk and a note from Buddy the Elf.

He was so excited when he saw his stocking.  It was so sweet because he noticed right away that we all had something in our stocking except for daddy.  He pointed at it immediately and said "Daddy doesn't have anything in his stocking!"  He looked sad!  Sweet boy.  I told him it was okay because Santa only fills children's stockings, not mommies and daddies.  The present in mine was from daddy, and I had other gifts for daddy under the tree.  I thought it was so sweet he was worried about daddy not getting anything!

He didn't know what to open first- his stocking or the presents under the tree.  I let him choose and he picked his stocking.  By this time, Kerigan was up and I got them both on the floor together long enough to snap my other favorite picture of the entire holiday season...
My two babies on Kerigan's very first Christmas morning.  It just brings tears to my eyes.  I will treasure this picture for the rest of my life.
And this image of my baby girl going after her dolly from Santa.  Priceless.  It's like she knew just what to do!
Kerigan loving her dolly and Andrew hugging something else!  Ha!  He is really into hugging things lately.  He got lots of new cars from Cars 2 in his stocking.
My sweet girl and her first dolly.  We got her name embroidered on the front and I just love it.  She loves it, too.  She has already been playing with it and it has become a favorite toy.  I love it for her first doll because it is all soft, even the face.
After stockings Andrew tore up the dining room and ripped through his presents so fast!  He was excited about every single one of them though!  I have noticed on Facebook recently people discussing whether or not they wrap Santa presents.  I have never even thought of not wrapping them!  For me, the most fun part is the anticipation of what is inside the gifts, and I feel like if they were all unwrapped, it would be all over so fast because he'd see everything right away!  To each their own...but for me...the fun part is wrapping them (of course, Santa has "special" paper, different from the rest of the gifts!)
This was the one I couldn't wait to see.  That one special item he had begged for in the store back in October and I had told him Christmas was coming.  So he had asked Santa and talked about this gift for 3 months.  It is the "mean boat" and the "crabby boat" from Cars 2.  
It was so amazing to see him ask Santa for something he wanted so badly, and then to see him open it and know that Santa brought him what he wished for.   I just have to write this story because I always want to remember it.  So, the "mean boat" (as he calls it) and the crabby boat usually come packaged separately.  He had seen them in 2 different boxes in the store.  Every time we went to Target or Walmart he wanted to go look at it.  And every time he'd say "We'll have to ask Santa to bring me these!"  So, when I found this 3-pack at Toys R Us, I knew I'd hit the jackpot (the spy train was just a bonus!  He loved it too!)  And I knew he wouldn't be expecting a big box like this.  So he pretty much dug in to all the other presents first, and I could tell he was trying to figure out which one was the mean boat.  I even asked him what he thought each one was before he opened it and he'd say "Mean boat!"  But he was wrong every time.  I finally coaxed him into opening the big gift.  Needless to say, he was thrilled.  He kept talking about it and I told him that Santa had put it in a different box.  He was so funny because he thinks Santa "tricked" him by doing this!  He'll say "Santa tricked me!  He put mean boat and crabby boat in the same box!  That's silly!"  He is so darn funny about it.  I think he'll always remember Santa's big trick!  Ha!
He had also asked Santa for these Angry Birds!  Ya think he's slightly excited??
The mess!  Ha!
We took a break after Santa gifts and played with his new toys and some of his new games while I threw brunch together.  It was hard to try to cook and watch Andrew open presents!  I wanted to get it in the oven before we started opening, but Andrew was too fast!
Little miss hung out in her new jumperoo and was so happy all day!
Brunch was ready!  Egg casserole and monkey bread!  Yum!  Seriously, some of my favorite food is brunch food.  Love it!  After brunch Ga Ga and Papa had to go to another Christmas for a couple of hours so we used that time to open gifts from each other.
I love how Kerigan can sit up now!  She knew just what to do- she'd tear into the paper and then put it in her mouth!  We had to watch her super close!
Every Christmas has to have a good surprise, right?  This was the biggest surprise of the day.  Something he totally wasn't expecting and had never seen before but I knew he'd go nuts over it.  His face here just makes my heart melt.
He is obsessed with the Wonder Pets.  I think I have about 34 episodes of it on our DVR!  Craig keeps saying our other shows aren't going to record because our DVR is too full with Andrew's shows!  Ha!  Anyway, he also is obsessed with toy figures like these- particularly ones that go with shows or movies that he loves.  I spotted this back in the summer at Walmart (and haven't seen it since!)  It was the only one on the shelf and I grabbed it to save for Christmas.  I could not wait for him to open it.  His reaction did not disappoint!
One happy boy!
Andrew also got the Leap Pad from mommy and daddy.  I knew this was the year he was ready for it.  I had the Leapster Explorer purchased last year, and I ended up returning it because I knew he wouldn't "get it."  But this year, with how much he loves playing with my iPhone, I knew he'd love his own!  And I'm so glad I waited another year because the Leap Pad is so neat!  It is touch screen and has so many more apps you can download.  It was also so sweet- Daddy went shopping for the kids and I didn't know what he got them.  He had a great idea to get Kerigan her own little laptop, which I thought was so sweet!  So here are the kids posed with their little computers!  Ha!
Kerigan and her laptop!
I think daddy was most excited about this Nerf gun he picked up for Andrew.  He had it all put together for him so he could play with it right away.  We've had darts shooting across the house for days, and we've already lost about 5 of them!  Boys will be boys!  
This was a special gift I worked on for daddy from the kids.  A desktop calendar from Shutterfly with all our favorite photos throughout the year.  Daddy loved it and can't wait to put it on his desk to think of us all the time when he's at work so much!  Ha!
Daddy picked out this onesie for Kerigan- thanks for the compliment, Craig! :)
I took so many pictures of Andrew posed with his toys, I thought this one of Kerigan was funny!  She was so adorable all day.  She just took everything in, like she knew something about the day was special.
Ga Ga and Papa came back later that afternoon and we played more games and just hung out.  Andrew's favorite game is this Scooby Doo game he got.
This is seriously the best part of the day for me.  Just chilling out and relaxing, watching Andrew play with his new things and laying around being lazy!  Something I never get to do!  Best Christmas ever.
The most special and important part of the day was when we made Jesus' birthday cake, lit the candles and sang happy birthday to Jesus.
Because that is really what the whole day was about.  This is something I will do with the kids every year, so they will never lose sight of the real meaning of Christmas.  

An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
  Luke 2: 9-12

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!  I can't wait to see what 2012 has in store for us!

Friday, December 30, 2011

christmas eve

Merry Christmas!  

The countdown continued on Christmas Eve when we went to my brother and sister in law's house to celebrate with them and my niece and nephew.  My nephew has a little girl who is 9 months old.
We could not get Kerigan and Lucy to sit still and both look at the camera at the same time!  Ha!  This is the best we could do.  They both looked so pretty in their Christmas dresses!
Kerigan with my niece Mary who was back from New York for Christmas!  We were all thrilled to see her and have her join us for Christmas Eve.
This is Mary with Kerigan and my nephew's wife, Jenny with Lucy.  Sweet girls!
Andrew loved Uncle Tim's new drum set!
He just banged on them so hard and thought it was the greatest thing ever!  We won't be getting one of these anytime soon!  Ha!
Me and my beautiful little girl
Kerigan and Ga Ga
Andrew was cracking me up with this silly toy!  Have you seen these sing a majig's?  They are hilarious!  You push their tummy and they make weird noises
Andrew just laughed and laughed!
He also got a fireman dress up outfit, which he loved!  He was pretending to drive the truck!
This was so funny- my neice posted this on Facebook with the heading:  Craig's or Andrew's toy?  Ha!
I think this is why Kerigan is such a laid back baby.  Her brother put the fireman hat on her and she just went with it!  Ha!
This position cracked me up!  She crashed on daddy's lap- real lady like Kerigan!  Ha!

After a wonderful celebration, we headed back to our house to get ready for Santa, and to say goodbye to Buddy the Elf.
When Andrew moved Santa to the "24" he found his reindeer food in the pocket!
Time to go sprinkle it on the lawn!
Doesn't it just look weird to sprinkle reindeer food on the grass, not on the snow?  It wasn't quite the same, but Andrew didn't seem to care!
He picked out special cookies to leave for Santa...

And we read "The Night Before Christmas" before bed...
Buddy was right on top of the mantle, waiting for Santa to come down the chimney.  Andrew looked up at him and told him goodbye.  It was so sweet.  I was a little sad to send Buddy back to the basement Santa.  It was so fun seeing the mischief he'd get into every night!  But he'll be back next year for more fun!

Andrew went right to sleep, talking all about Santa.  We looked up in the sky when we sprinkled the reindeer food but didn't see any sign of him yet.  He wanted to look up on the roof at the chimney (which is very small!) and asked where the reindeer were going to go (our roof is slanted).  I explained that they are magic, and they would pull Santa's sleigh right up on the roof and that the small chimney would get big enough for Santa to fit through.  He just looked completely amazed.  After he was in bed, I commented to Craig that this was just about the most fun age Andrew has been at Christmastime so far.  There is just nothing like seeing the wonder on his face.  I love how he doesn't question... he just believes.  Children just add so much fun and excitement to the holidays.  They are a good reminder for us of what Christmas is all about.  I already can't wait til next year!

More to come from Christmas morning!!

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