Each year my parents buy a new little stuffed noisemaker to go under the tree.
This year, I think instead of that, they bought a snowman with a plunger that sits in their bathroom and when you turn on the light it speaks to you. It's cute - "Hello! You're looking a little flushed." - and it comes with about 10 different sayings. However, it scares the crap out of me everytime I walk in their bathroom. I don't expect something to start a conversation with me at that point.
Anyway - these are a huge hit with the little kids and this year Katelyn turned every single jingler on at the same time. She was pretty happy.
We started off with our annual family picture. This gets so much easier to take each year as the kids get older and can sit 10 seconds without moving. But right now, 10 seconds is about all we get. And it's just barely enough time for me to run to my spot after setting the camera. I imagine that will get more difficult as the years go by.
Some kids just sit around waiting for things to arrive at "their" spot. "Grabby" - pictured below - was only too happy to receive his allotted pile.
The Smith girls were anxious to get into their stockings. Dan was trying to figure out the new-fangled flashlight Santa left for him.
There's the look of wonder...
I tried to get Katelyn's expressions....FAIL
He wasn't sure to make of it. But, we couldn't figure out how to wrap his actual gift, so it was placed in a large un-Christmas-y garbage bag.
This year Maddie received a package of about a dozen nail polish colors. She'll never run out.
Tracy, Kelly and I were trying to explain the concept of "less is more" to Maddie. Then we started discussing how each of us really doesn't have much of a clue as to the proper way to apply make-up. Kelly said she planned on sending her daughters to a friend of hers to learn how to apply makeup. This was slightly discouraging to me because I had planned on sending Maddie to Kelly.
When presents were done, Ellie had something very important to tell Grandpa. I'm not sure either one of us knew what she was actually saying.
Then my dad leaned over and gave her a little kiss on the cheek. And I took a picture but my flash hadn't warmed back up. Grrr! I have a great, dark shot of it though, if you are still interested, Tracy.
I believe Rob and Dan each tried to use their children's pillows, but each was denied by that child and the pillow was taken back - sometimes forcefully.
All the excitement was mostly followed by food.
All followed by more playing, more food, more napping, and more eating. Repeat, repeat, repeat.