I didn't get a lot of time off for Christmas this year. At my job we only took one day, which was the day after Christmas.
In fact this is actually the first year *ever* since I started working when I was 15 that I didn't get at least a week off for the holidays.
I have worked at either a preschool or grade school my whole life until I got my last job and then for the last four years that job took off two weeks at Christmas as well.
It's nice to have the time off. But it sucks to have to save all of your paid time off for that, or even worse to not get paid at all(like at my last job). It made for a very lean Christmas and New Years. It was nice to go into the holiday without the worry that we would be flat broke the week following.
But it made for a quick trip again up North, like it was at Thanksgiving. I took off the 23rd so we could at least have one extra day for travel.
We left at the crack of dawn(as usual) and got up to my sister's around noon. It was a relaxing day. We laid around and watched movies, ate far too much and generally just kicked back. Exactly what a vacation should be. I watched White Christmas(my fav!) while Joe took a nap because he was deathly ill with the flu/a nasty cold(which I now have. Lovely).
The next day was Christmas Eve day and somehow we found ourselves at the mall buying last minute presents and using the gift cards that were burning holes in Grace and Cameron's pockets that Papa and Uncle Kenny had sent up with us.
I know this is a stupid question, and your answer is going to be "Well DUH!", but did you know that you shouldn't go to the mall on Christmas Eve Day? No really. You shouldn't. People are CRAZY. And there will be nowhere to park. And people are crazy. Won't be doing that again any time soon.
For Christmas Eve dinner we went for easy this year and ordered Thai food. It was delicious.
Cameron and Grace each got to open a present. Cameron chose what he thought was a video game(it was-shocker) and Grace chose a board game. Cameron quickly ensconced himself in Lisa's bedroom to play his video game and Lisa, Joe, Grace and myself retired to the dining room to play her game.
It's called "Blokus". It is a fun game but it's not my cup of tea. It is a spatial strategy game and I suck at those. Apparently. Because I kept losing. Give me a word game, or even a card game any day over this kind of game. Lisa, Joe and Grace really liked it though and we had a fun time playing so that's all that matters. I guess. (sore loser much? LOL).
See how thrilled I look to be playing? This after I lost. Twice. Hmph.
Grace was quite good at it
After that we settled in to watch "A Christmas Story"(you'll shoot your eye out kid). It was on a 24 hour continual loop on one of the channels. Funny. I think we actually ended up watching it one and a half times, just because it was on and no one bothered to change the channel. Joe and I didn't make it to church(again) this year because Joe was so sick and just wasn't feeling up to it. Last year it was me that was not feeling well with a horrible migraine.
Then Lisa and Grace got into their matching P.J.'s I was super jealous that I didn't have some matching P.J.'s too(hint hint). And they have owls on them! So cute!
After that we headed to bed to wait for Santa to come in the morning. O.K., no one in the Smith household believes in Santa anymore. Except me. Just kidding. Sort of.
On Christmas morning the kids let us sleep until 7:30(yay for the kids being older and not getting us up at 5 a.m. anymore!)
Grace is playing Santa and passing out the presents and Cameron is helping Finn open one of his presents. I think he got more presents than Joe did. No joke. He even had his own stocking.
Cameron opening the one present he was really hoping to get. Mom came through again. Mom rocks!
After presents Lisa made a yummy breakfast and we ate far too much and laid around the living room playing with our new toys.
Breakfast casserole plus the traditional cinnamon rolls. Yum!
Sweet Finn chillaxing after the present opening.
It's a shame that he is so unloved. ;)
Some of the big hits this year were an Xbox game that has an actual guitar and it teaches you how to play, plus more video games than I can count for Cam. His Dad got him a Kindle Fire too! He really made out.
For Grace, she is getting into clothes so she got a few cute outfits, plus a couple of matching ones for her AG doll. She also got a new art set to keep at her Dad's so she can paint when she's there, and a disabled set for her American girl dolls, which she really wanted. She had asked for the wheel chair but she got this one instead because it came with more "stuff".
Funny, I remember pretending my dolls had injuries/disabilities at her age too.
With the gift card that Papa & Uncle Kenny gave her she went to Target and got these strange little things:
They are called Zoobles and the best way I can think of explaining them is that they are a cross between Littlest Petshop and Poke balls(both of which I only know about because I used to work at a daycare center. If you aren't a parent I am probably speaking Greek to you right now).
They are kind of cute little guys.
Here Grace is showing them off for Papa & Uncle Kenny. Thanks for the Zoobles Papa & Uncle Kenny!
Cameron chose a racing game with the Gamestop gift card from Papa and Uncle Kenny. Uncle Joe and he played for a bit. I think Cameron won.
Lisa got me a Kindle Fire(so cool!!-more on that later) plus the camera. She also got me some soaps from LUSH, which is one of my favorite things on the planet. Love me some handmade soaps. I really made out this year too. Joe got a cool tablet for the computer that you can draw on and it transfers to the computer screen, plus some wooden puzzles he likes and a book on making soup. He has taken over most of the cooking and had wanted to try his hand at making different kinds of soup. I can't wait to see what he comes up with.
Overall it was a lovely Christmas and hard to come home after such a short time.
When we left on the 26th Lisa was in bed with the stomach flu that she had come down with in the middle of the night. This delayed our depart time by a few hours, as I stayed to clean up the house and make sure she was set up with Gatorade, saltines and chicken broth before the kids went with Scott for the night.
We didn't end up leaving until almost two o'clock in the afternoon and it took us almost 8 hours to get home. Blech. We got home around 10:00 in the evening and I promptly went to bed so I could go to work the next day.
Exactly 24 hours after coming home I was deathly ill with the stomach flu too. Ugh. No fun at all!
Thankfully there were no doctors in the office that week so I was able to take a couple of sick days to get over it before going back to work on Friday.
Then about three days after getting over the stomach flu I came down with the nasty chest cold that Joe and everyone I worked with had. I still have it, two weeks later and it does not seem to be getting better. Double blech. I am on antibiotics now so I hope it kicks it out soon. I am so done with being sick.
Well that was our Christmas. It's funny how it seems like it was so long ago.
How was your Christmas? Did Santa bring everything you asked for? :)
Next up: New Years.