our (early) christmas at home

before we left for arizona, to spend christmas with ian’s parents, we had our own christmas at home. i had talked with santa about coming to our house a few days early, and we did all our treasured traditions – treating 18 december as christmas eve and 19 december as christmas day.

i decided to take some photos of all the kids in their matching pyjamas a few days before those big days to make sure we got some good ones πŸ˜‰ it was my workout for that day – i definitely broke a sweat, haha.

after we returned home from the eyre family party at my parents’ in park city, we had our traditional “jerusalem supper.” we ate middle eastern food by candle/twinklelight and talked about what it might have been like for mary and joseph eating their last meal before christ was born. we even got into character a little this year, pretending to be different characters in the christmas story.

and after our meal we lit our german christmas pyramid and sang the carols we always sing together on christmas eve.

then we got in christmas pjs and gathered together the presents we had carefully selected and wrapped for a family we knew of that needed a little extra cheer and help this christmastime. this is our boys’ favourite christmas tradition – “ding dong ditching” some gifts for others that may not have as many presents as us. moses and gabriel were great sneaky elves, dropping our big bag of goodies on the doorstep and running to the car! for weeks afterwards they would wonder out loud about the boys who they picked out presents – were they playing with them right now?! were they so excited?!

and then came maybe my favourite part of christmas eve – setting everything up after the kids are in bed – and enjoying the cookies for santa and watching parts of a muppet christmas carol with ian πŸ™‚

i never sleep well on christmas eve. it’s because i am so excited – like totally giddy. the boys woke at 5:15 and i was ready to hop out of bed, haha. we always open stockings first. the contrasting faces of early early christmas morning crack me up in these photos – after a while ian was a little more alert, ha! following our theme of clothing with the kids’ faces on it, ian got a sweet mask in his stocking!

then it’s into the living room to see what big presents santa brought! (just one for each kid, unwrapped, in our fam!) mo was pretty psyched about the light saber. i’ll never forget him catching a glimpse of his reflection in our big living room window and just being thrilled out of his skin! gabes was pretty excited about his puzzles too (he’s asked santa for puzzles two years in a row – he’s a puzzle master!).

but for sure the best part of christmas presents is the gifts the kids give to each other!! moses and gabriel were so excited and so sweet watching each other open the gifts they had both been so thoughtful about getting for their brother.

but the most thrilling gift to give was the boys’ gift to their daddy. i’m so mad my camera was on the wrong setting so these are terrible photos – mo and gabes were seriously freaking out with joy. it was such a delight to watch!

the gift from ian and i to the each of our kids is always books. i read one of mo’s new books – the book with no pictures – to them right on the spot and they were giggling so hard.

then the babies woke up! they got to empty their shared stocking in their bedroom first thing with quite an audience of excited siblings and parents. they really only had eyes for the lollipops, haha.

but they were also excited about the toy santa brought them!
they gave their gift to moses – they had gotten him that bow and arrow from the christmas market, after all! mo was ecstatic.

gotta have some self-timer family photos on christmas morning! gotta love mo peaking out from between us with his new bow and arrow πŸ™‚

a few more gifts to give (and i had to snap some close-up photos of the boys’ labeling on their gifts to give away) …

and then we went to church! (our home christmas fell on a sunday so we went to our regular meetings at the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints. we go to a church service of some other denomination of christianity on christmas day when it’s not on a sunday.) after church there were even more presents to open!

moses and gabriel and i had a blast putting together the legos the babies gave to gabe, just exactly as they appeared on the box!

and as per tradition, we didn’t clean up a bit of the mess until all the gifts had been opened and played with a bit. i love christmas mess!!

my christmassy babies (insert heart eyes emoji):

we put the twins in their high chairs to have some lunch after all that excitement, and after a few minutes we found auggie like this – ha! after we moved him up to his crib, we found evie like this – having climbed into her brother’s chair to finish off his food. this cracked us up!

the last gift of christmas was a bean bag for the boys’ reading area in their bedroom. gabe was excited to take a photo on it by the little tree that his beloved cousin / babysitter had given to him and moses for their room. it was a beautiful sunny sparkly-snow and icicle day – perfect for our mock christmas.

after all the fun it was on to packing up for our epic road trip to arizona – with stops at five national parks and las vegas on the ways there and back!

it was a merry (early) christmas, indeed!

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