Last night we (as in me and Luke, my parents, my sister, and her boyfriend) went out to eat and then driving around to look at Christmas lights. It's a yearly tradition in our family. We went out to eat at Texas Roadhouse, and although we had to wait FOREVER for our food, it was delicious! We then went driving around in search of the coolest Christmas lights we could find. We went to a different city than we usually go to, because last year we didn't have much luck in our usual location. I'm glad we did, because we saw a lot more cool stuff than last year! The coolest house had a light show timed to music. We've seen a few like that this year, but this one was the best so far. The little drummers by the door actually hit the drums to the beat of the music. It was pretty cool!Today was my first day of Christmas break! I spent it wrapping all of our presents, and baking some more. I hadn't even started wrapping yet, so it took a while, but I got it all done except for a few last minute things. There's some empty space under the tree where I still have to put my mom's present, and two of Luke's that still haven't come in the mail!! I really hope they get here by tomorrow! Plus I think Luke has a few gifts to wrap that need to go under there (i.e. mine :-P)
You may notice the three tiny stockings to the right of the tree. I broke down and bought them for Ellie and Gabby (the cats) and even one for Max, the dog we are puppy-sitting this week. I didn't want him to feel left out! I will fill the cats' with treats, and I will probably just let Max play with his. I don't know what kind of treats his
And I finally hung Luke's and my stockings. These are both the stockings we used when we were growing up too :-)After I was done with all that, I baked some more. I made some Russian Tea Cakes (my FAVORITE!!) Afterwards it looked like it had snowed in the kitchen with all the powdered sugar I got on everything! I'm messy in the kitchen. I also made some more peanut butter blossoms, because I had already bought all the Hershey's Kisses and everything for them. Plus, you can't have too many of those, right??Later tonight we went to a dinner party at our neighbors', Rachel and Jared's house. They also happen to be our good friends, Rachel is my cousin, and Jared is Luke's bandmate. Rachel made all the band members a delicious dinner as a thank you for dedicating their time to the band. We had ham balls, mashed potatoes, rolls, green beans, and a rich, chocolatey dessert. Rachel is a regular Martha Stewart, so it was all so beautiful and delicious. I really wish I had had my camera with me to show her beautiful place settings and home! Anyway, it was a great time. After dinner we played paper telephone. Have you played it? Basically, one person writes down a sentence, then the next person draws a picture of the sentence, the next picture writes a sentence about the new picture, the next person draws a picture of the new sentence, and so on. By the end the original sentence has usually changed so much! It's just like telephone, but better, because you can look back and see how the message changed each time. We laughed so hard my stomach hurt. It's definitely a fun game!
We have so many plans for Christmas I have a feeling we are going to be exhausted when it's all said and done. Luckily my preparations are almost completely finished so I can just sit back and enjoy tomorrow and Friday. I do want to make some more cookies tomorrow, but that's about the only thing left to do. Luke's sister let me open this present early, because she thought I would want to use it before Christmas is over:She knows me well :-) I'm going to make some gingerbread cookies and have fun decorating them tomorrow! Then tomorrow night we have the Christmas Eve service at church. Luke's band is playing. Right after that we are going to my grandparents' house for my mom's side of the family's Christmas party. After that we are going to (maybe) try and make it to Luke's aunt's Christmas party for a few minutes. That one's still up in the air though, because we don't know if we'll have time. Then we will end the evening with Luke's family at his parents' house, where we will exchange gifts and probably watch "A Christmas Story." I think this has become somewhat of a tradition. Luke will not stop talking about how excited he is about getting to open some gifts a day early ;-)
On Christmas day we will wake up and exchange gifts with each other. I plan on making some hot chocolate and cinnamon buns. Then we will probably head over to my parent's to exchange gifts and spend time together. For lunch we will head to Luke's grandparents' on his mom's side for their Christmas party. And for some delicious food! After that, we will try to make the hour drive to my aunt's house for my dad's side of the family's Christmas party.
And that's not all. On the day after Christmas, Luke's dad's side of the family has their big Christmas party. Also, my friend is home from Chicago for a few days, and is having a party that day that we will try to make it to.
Wow...I need to take a deep breath after all that. Writing that all out was exhausting, so I can't imagine how I will be feeling by the end of it. Yet I am filled with a huge sense of excitement, because this is my favorite time of the year! I love being this busy and spending so much time with the people we love at Christmastime. And remembering the reason we celebrate this holiday.
I'm not sure if I will be able to check in tomorrow or not, so if not, Merry Christmas!! I hope you enjoy every minute of it!
P.S. Yesterday was my one year blogiversary ;-) I can't believe I have done this for a whole year already! In one year I have posted 338 times! Wow! I don't expect that number to be quite so high next year, But I don't plan on quitting blogging anytime soon. It has become such a fun hobby, and I have met so many amazing people since my first post! So thanks for reading and commenting! Here's to many more years of recording memories, sharing ideas, and making friends :-)