Well, it’s over. It was fun while it lasted, but it never seems to last long enough. You know? Regardless, we had a great holiday. This is how our Christmas goes… Christmas Eve we spend with Mr. Darcy’s family most years. We ate dinner and then read Luke 2. We stopped in at my sister’s house for some more visiting and messages about Baby Jesus. Then we came home, checked the Norad Santa Tracker (“Uh-oh! Santa’s on the east coast! We’d better hurry and get in bed!!” Luckily my little girls who still believe in Santa don’t know how far away the east coast really is.). We have a tradition to open one present Christmas Eve, which is always a new pair of jammies for the kids. This is so they don’t look like orphans in mismatched, ill-fitting pajamas on Christmas morning. Very smart, an idea I stole from a friend of mine a few years ago. So, now since they know the present is going to be jammies, when I say, “Let’s open up our super secret surprise present!!!” they roll their eyes and say in a dead voice, “Yay. Pajamas.”. And of course, we bake cookies for Santa and all that good stuff. Ignore the HAPPY BIRTHDAY gift bag in the back. We ran out of paper this year. On Christmas morning, I heard one of the kids get up and walk downstairs. I assumed like every other year, they would look in the living room, see that Santa had come, and then come up to our room to wake us up. I waited. And waited. And listened. And heard some more quiet footsteps. And heard Lizzy get Kitty out of bed… And finally I figured I’d better see what was going on, so I put in my contacts and went downstairs. All four of them were up, they had separated all their presents into piles, claimed their stockings, and started without us. I was like, “Hey! Hey! Hey! What’s going on?!” And they looked at me like, “What? We don’t need you. Go back to bed.” Another tradition I stole from others (that Mr. Darcy routinely mocks) is to get the kids just four(ish) gifts: Something they want. Something they need. Something to wear. Something to read. Mr. Darcy thinks this is, to put it mildly, stupid. He always adds extra lines like, “Something to wear, something to share, something for their hair…”. Har. Anyway, here is Jane’s WANT gift: And she has barely left its side since Christmas morning. It barks, wags its tail, shakes hands, sits, etc. And no pooping! Best pet ever. The oldest three kids got a set of scriptures for their NEED gift: Lizzy and The Boy seemed glad to receive them, but Jane’s reaction was hilarious. You know the scene in A Christmas Story where Ralphie and Randy open up socks, look at each other, and then toss the socks over their shoulder? That was exactly Jane’s opinion about getting scriptures for Christmas. For the WEAR gift, I got the kids some nice dress clothes. And I have a photo shoot with them all dressed up in their new clothes bouncing around in my head, so maybe in the next day or two I will get that done. The Boy’s READ gift: Are you surprised? I didn’t think so. Lizzy gave Kitty a new baby doll. Which she loves. And tell me this isn’t the raddest gift ever?! I’m not sure he was as excited to receive it as I was to give it, though. Still, awesomeness. And then it was all over. Kitty entered a candy cane fueled coma for a few hours. Afterwards, we had our traditional crepe breakfast with my sisters at Pemberley. It is pretty much my kids’ favorite breakfast of the year, and they gorge themselves on crepes filled with strawberries, Nutella, whipped cream, bananas, and blueberries. Delicious! We already can’t wait until next year.