Our Christmas actually started Christmas Eve morning with the awesome news that Daddy was going to be home from work all day (I knew this ahead of time, the kids didn't). We enjoyed a lazy, just hang out in pajamas, watch movies, and play kind of day.
That evening, the kids put on the vest and dress Great Grandma Margie made them and we went to our church's candle light Christmas Eve service. But first, I attempted some pictures of them. Sarah was not thrilled about Joseph holding her hand,
but got over it when she learned a treat was involved.
In another attempt to get a decent picture of the two of them, we grabbed a chair.
And ended up with this gem.
I did manage to get one super sweet Sarah smile, though.
For some reason, Joseph decided I needed to take a picture of him with the sheep from our nativity scene as we were leaving the house.
So we took a picture of Sarah when we got back. They were both sooo well behaved at the service making us incredibly proud of them. I wish I would have taken a picture of Joseph with his candle, he lit it himself and was super careful with it the whole time.
And because I like to keep it real, here's another nativity scene after the service picture. It makes me laugh.
After church, we went to a local Japanese restaurant (where we also ate last year and decided we would make it a tradition because they were super sweet) for a fa-ra-ra-ra-ra dinner (any A Christmas Story fans out there?). Then we drove around looking at Christmas lights for a while. When we got home, the kids each got to open one specially marked gift (Christmas pajamas) before baths and bed.
Christmas day, our kids both slept in until about 8:30 (a perk of having kids old enough to sleep through the night, but too young to wake up early super excited about Christmas)! Sam had put together a roller coaster the night before and Joseph enjoyed watching it for a few minutes before even venturing over to the presents. Ignore the sweat pants, sweet boy had his first overnight accident in a long time leaving us no choice (I seriously considered playing with the kids in the bedroom while I dried his pajama pants so he would be wearing them in pictures, but decided it wasn't worth it).
The kids' "big" gift this year was a kitchen.
I'm happy to say that a month later it is still played with daily.
We really tried to keep it simple as far as gifts go. They also had some gifts from grandparents and aunts and uncles to open, so they ended up with a big enough assortment of stuff to keep them entertained for the day which is good since we spent the entire rest of the day at home.
While I finished preparing lunch, the kids made lunch for Sam in their new kitchen.
Friday morning we headed to my dad's house in Lawton where Sarah was happy to see horses.
The kiddos rode the pedal tractor and tricycle and played with the dogs for a while, then we headed over to Grandma Margie and Papa Don's for their Christmas event. It's only about two miles, but when we got there we discovered this.
Joseph was happy to discover cousin Bryar was at Grandma Margie's house (as well as a ton of other family members). They have an organ that Joseph loves playing.
After dinner, the menfolk hung out in one room
while everyone else started gathering in another
where, just like every year, Grandma read the story of Jesus' birth before we opened gifts.
We then headed back to Papa Joe's (my dad) house where the boys got trampolines (there was no way I was getting a decent picture of that!), donned cool new jammies
and slept on a pallet in the living room with Papa. Apparently Joseph was being himself and asking tons of questions because around 11:00 I heard my dad ask, "Joseph, do you know what be quiet means?"
They managed to make it all night, though. And Sarah was eager to join the party when she woke up the next morning.
Before we headed out for our next gathering, we sat up the ol' tripod and took a few pictures
It's a little difficult to get a three toddlers to look at a camera and smile when there is no one behind it, but we managed.
We even took a couple family pics of my sister and her crew (have I mentioned Bryar will be a big brother in March?!).
Before we could leave, my little hat obsessed girl ended up wearing Papa's hat.
Which led to Joseph wanting to take a picture in it
as well as Bryar.
Worn out from the day before, all three kids passed out a few minutes into the 30 minute drive to Grandma Jean and Grandpa Dennis' house.
Once at Grandma Jean's, Bryar practiced being a big brother with Sarah by tickling her.
Because you know we had to at some point, we attempted a couple pictures of the cousins.
While we were taking their picture, my cousin, Ross, came out to surprise the kiddos...
dressed as one of the Ninja Turtles.
It was better than Santa Claus.
Miss Priss got fancied up with a new faux fur vest that she wanted to put on immediately and a purse. Girl loves her accessories.
Since my grandparents were going to be celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary in a few days, we made it a point to take a whole family picture so we could frame it for them.
My Aunt Cindy wanted a picture with the kiddos but the boys weren't really having it.
It ended with them being silly and Sarah wanting kisses.
Luckily, the kids cooperated so we could take a family picture.
The day continued with the kids doing what they had been doing at every gathering so far, eating.
If you had a plate with something sweet on it, it was highly likely that Sarah would find you
and stare you down until you shared with her.
The event ended with Sarah taking a nap on her Great Grandpa Dennis
and Joseph loving on some horses.
We took the scenic drive through the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge from my grandparents' house to my mom's house that afternoon. The next day, the boys started a band with Bryar on the microphone
and Joseph on the keyboard.
After lunch, Sam, Sarah, and I headed home leaving Joseph to spend a few days with Gammy and Aunt Moo. It was actually fun to spend some alone time with Sarah over the next couple of days.
Her play is so much calmer than Joseph's (although I missed him and his huge personality terribly while he was gone).
Only having the calm child home allowed me time to take down our Christmas decorations (even though Sam would have rather I left them up until after the 1st) during which I discovered a nerf dart in the tree which brought a smile to my face. Evidence of a little boy living here (I'm just glad it didn't break one of my special ornaments.