Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Eve Night

After church service on Christmas Eve, our family festivities began. The kids got to open 2 gifts on Christmas Eve night, their ornament and their "secret Santa" gift. Each year, I get the kids an ornament that represents something from their lives. Here is the list for this year:
Cody: Football Ornament (He played football for the first time.)
Lauren: Blender Ornament (She has really loved learning to cook this year.)
Abby: Piano (She has taken an interest in learning to play the piano.)
Sam: Basketball Ornament (Rick is going to be his first basketball coach.)
Isaiah: A Fireman Santa (He had a fire truck bday and has been very intrigued by Santa this year.)
Laila: Princess Tiana (Her absolute favorite princess)

"Secret Santa" gifts are where the kids draw names and buy a gift for the sibling whose name they drew. They have a $10 limit and love shopping for each other.

After the gifts are opened, our food is ready. We have an appetizer feast that is so yummy. It consists of sausage balls, pigs in a blanket, lil' smokies wrapped in bacon with brown sugar, cheese ball and crackers, and Christmas treats.
All ready for the feast!!
This year, we saved our cookie decorating competition for this night. I have to say, this is probably my least favorite tradition. It is messy, time consuming, and I am not very good at decorating cookies. I prefer to take more of a "server" role by baking the cookies, getting all the supplies ready, and helping them. I did make a couple of cookies so that I could be in the competition.

This was Isaiah's and Laila's first year to participate. They really enjoyed it.

Rick takes this competition very seriously. Here were his prized cookies.
The ornament was his entry.
Cody made Charlie Brown with a Santa Hat.
I was really impressed with his creativity!
Isaiah's were more "abstract"
Laila ate her entry so we will just show her playing
her favorite Christmas gift, her guitar.
Lauren made a gingerbread man with a Santa hat.
I made a snowflake.
Abby made Rudolph, complete with a red nose!
Sam made a blue candy cane with marshmallows.
And, the winner was...
Abby!!! Her use of the swirled chips as her reindeer and her red nose
inside of the marshmallow gave her the edge over the rest of us!
Her prize? She got to be the first to open a gift in our rotation on Christmas morning. Not to mention the glory of winning.

I could not end this post without showing my absolute favorite cookie. Abby made this cookie of Africa. Swaziland is the white spot at the bottom. She did it free hand, no cookie cutter! This girl is always thinking of Africa. I can't wait for the day when I get to take her on her first trip there!!
Christmas Eve night was fun. We nestled everyone into bed for the night. The anticipation of the next day could be felt in the air. I am not sure how much they all slept, but I know that Christmas day did not disappoint.

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