Monday, December 27, 2010

After Action Review of Christmas

Every year for Christmas we go to my Aunt Sherry's on Christmas day for lunch and to open presents.  Before going to Aunt Sherry's I always go to mom's house, and we exchange our gifts. 

This year I bought mom a Mike Byers fused glass piece called Charon Crossing the River Styx, a bird house in the shape of a sparrow and the big bonus DVD set for the movie Avatar.  I have lost count of the number of times mom has watched that movie.  I thought she would like to watch the documentary of how James Cameron made the movie.

For my Christmas gifts, I got my printer early because the printer we had died, a steam mop which I have wanted one for over a year and a purse by Lori at Waterstone.  I borrowed the photo from Lori's website so you could see the glorious bag that is all mine, mine I say, hahahahaha.  Can you tell I am stoked about this bag.  If you haven't been to her blog, go there now and be prepared to drool all over your keyboard! 

After opening gifts, mom and I headed over to my aunt's house.  There were 15 of us who eat dinner, and then there were four more who joined us later to open gifts (have the other side of the family to see). 

The above photos are the dinner table set up when we sit down to chow down on all the good food.  There is the main table and then two extra tables set up in the sun room.  I should have taken a picture of all the food that can feed an army, which is our family.

After eating, we sit around for about an hour before letting the kids open their gifts.  That use to be a big production.  When I first came home we all got each other gifts and then each of us would open a gift one at a time and gift opening would take almost three hours, plus it was getting expensive buying each other gifts.  About seven years ago we decided to start drawing each others names.  We would have a set dollar limit, and we would write up a list of things we would like, put our name on it, put the list in a basket and then each of us would draw a name.  That was fun.  Then two years ago, because money was tight for everyone, we decided to do a white elephant gift exchange. 

My cousins and gifts for adults
All the adults would buy a gift ($25) wrap it up and we would put the gifts in a pile.  We would all draw a number and start with one.  If a person didn't want to pick a present they could steal a present they liked.  The person who had their gift stolen then could either steal a gift or pick another present to open.  The item stolen could be only stolen twice, and we did numbers because otherwise I think it would have been a free for all with elbows flying and adults being taken down (believe me when I say I cheat!).

It was an awesome day, even with more snow.  I think this has been the first white Christmas in several years.  I know the first two years I was home were white, but I don't remember a white Christmas in a long time.  I know mom was happy because she loves snow.

Here are some photos of the white fluffy crap, err, snow.

Mom and I also have another holiday tradition that I am hoping gets broken next year.  It seems either around Christmas or New Year's either mom, me or it use to be my grandparents would be in either the urgent care or ER.  Well, yesterday I had to take mom to urgent care, nothing serious, but this is one tradition I hope we can break for next year!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday.  I am hoping mom gets to feeling better and we can work on cutting out, enameling or patina pendants and bowls.  Keep your eyes peeled for that.


  1. Sounds like you had a great Christmas and the pictures are beautiful. It is so wonderful to have family around you this time of year.

  2. Thanks for sharing a bit of your holiday with us!
    Enjoy the day, Beth!
    P.S. I made an ornament for my mother in law with your large cross. She loved it!

  3. Oh ugh, break that sickness tradition! Knock on wood, I wasn't ill for the first time in years this Christmas!

    And I LOVE your snow photos!

  4. The other traditions are keepers ... you right about getting rid of the ER tradition! You have my permission to break the cycle! :-)

  5. What a great Christmas! Hope you enjoy your new bag. :) And I also hope that your mom feels better by now and that your tradition is broken next year.

  6. I so hope Evie is better and give her big hugs for me! Other than that it sounds like it was a great holiday!

  7. I have taken a break so I missed these posts- catching up a bit this week.
    Beautiful photographs- believe it or not we had 1" of wet snow this morning which unfortunately changed to rain and melted by noon. It was a pleasant surprise. Happy New Year!


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