On Christmas morning, growing up, we always had to wait for Mom and Dad to give the go ahead before coming down/up the stairs to get our Christmas stockings! So we have lots of pictures of us as kids with the wonderful look of anticipation and pure happiness on Christmas morning, and we love being able to capture those same expressions in our own children!
The kids loved opening all of their stocking stuffers from Santa! It was lots of fun to hear their reactions and to enjoy their giddiness!
Christmas Eve is always full of fun traditions and we love being able to share them with our children! This is the first Christmas Eve the kids were able to spend with their cousins and it was fun to watch them interact. We read the Christmas story out of Luke in the Bible and attempted to dress the kids up in nativity wear....but.....most of them weren't really thrilled with that idea and the costumes didn't last long! Preston and Lainey bug were Joseph and Mary and Reuhl and Lennon were angels. Aleece still gets nervous "performing" in front of people and Hayden fell asleep. So....we didn't get too many pictures of this particular tradition, but it was fun nonetheless! :) We also got to hear Grandma Moore read us all a very touching story about her father on Christmas!
In our family it is tradition to open one gift on Christmas Eve, and that gift is always jammies! It's a fun tradition and I look forward to it every year! This year I was so excited to find matching pajamas for Val and the kids! Val and Lennon got Grinch pajamas and Leecy and Lainey got Cindy Lou Who pajamas! They were a big hit and they all looked so cute!!! Val gave me some super comfy pajamas that are really cute as well! There was a little drama involved, when he realized he had left my wrapped pajamas back home in Memphis, but his last minute purchase was a good one!
We left for Yuma on the 3:10 am train out of Little Rock, Arkansas on December 20th. There is a movie called 3:10 to Yuma, so we thought this was pretty funny! :) We were on the train for 48 straight hours and are glad it went so smoothly! The kids were really well behaved and it was nice to be able to get up and walk around (even though my feet still ended up swollen!) and to have Val's help with the kids while we were traveling! He is such a good Dad! The chairs were really comfy and we met some very nice and some very interesting characters aboard the train! It was fun to see all the scenery and it was nice to not have to worry about any other drivers or the weather! The kids seemed to enjoy it, although I will admit that we were all happy to reach our destination! :)
sidenote: I am aware I look a little crazy in the above picture, but I was taking the picture and this was the best I could do!!!
Before we headed to Yuma for Christmas vacation we decided to open family Christmas presents at home! We were spoiled way too much and there was just WAY too much to take on the train!
We received so many nice things! My parents let us open our gift a little early and we were thrilled to receive a Wii and Wii Fit! What an awesome gift! The kids were as excited as we were! We love to play as a family and we are hoping it will be a good way for us to get and stay in shape! It's definitely been used daily!!!
The kids received the impossible to find Zhu Zhu pets from their Granny and Grampy as well! They were so excited to open them and they are still a big hit! They love to play with them and I love the giggles that ensue every time they get played with! Even Lennon thinks they are awesome!! We know a lot of time and energy was put into finding these gifts as well! It is very much appreciated!!!
Aleece received a really fun butterfly home from Patty and Eric, where she can send away for real caterpillars and watch them turn into butterflies! She was so excited! She loves ALL animals! Madelaine received a really fun play-doh cooking set from Patty and Eric and she was so happy! Who doesn't love play-doh? And Lennon received a soft new green blanket and super fun old school Little People Farm set! The blanket has already been used innumerable times and he loves the farm set!
Katchie and Jeff gave Aleece a Barbie on a bike, where Barbie's legs actually move! Barbies have definitely come a long way's over the years! And Madelaine got a whole set of Littlest Pet Shop animals! The girls had to open them immediately! They have already taken up residence in the girls doll house! And Mr. Lennon received some new clothes, which he looks very handsome in!
MaryRose bought the girls some awesome Camelbak water bottles! She and Katchie have used them for years and the girls were ALWAYS trying to drink out of them! Aleece got a purple one and Madelaine got a pink one! They also had to use these immediately! And they came in super handy on our train ride and vacation! We love anything spill-proof!
Thank you all so much for all of our wonderful gifts! You all made our Christmas so very special! We love you all so much and are so grateful for your thoughtfulness and kindness to us always! THANK YOU!!!!!
We had our ward Christmas party back in December and it was fun, as always, to get together with our ward family and celebrate the season. We enjoyed lots of goodies, special musical numbers (Val and I performed) and a visit from Santa Claus. Other than one incident with some incredibly HOT hot chocolate (hence why Aleece is wearing my jacket in the pictures) we had a really good time! It's always fun to get together and visit with our ward members! Plus we had somewhat of a Christmas miracle with ALL three kids smiling and looking at the camera! Amazing! :)