It was so nice to spend Christmas in Arizona. I have a million (or 500) pictures and a lot of things to write about the whole visit to Mesa.
Sheldon arrived on Christmas Eve and his kids and wife were so happy to have him there. I had been telling Alex that we couldn't open presents until we got to Arizona. Then we got there and he was ready to open presents. So I had to delay him again. I told him we needed to wait for Daddy. But then Sam arrived so I told him we could open presents when Sheldon flew in. Alex was bouncing off the walls telling me that "Sheldon is here!" I thought it was cute that he was excited until he said, "Now let's open presents." Darn. One more day, Alex.
My parents' home teachers brought Krispy Kreme donuts in the morning. I ate three and then looked up the nutrition facts about them. Not good.
Around 5pm, we went to Papa and Gramma's for our Christmas Eve festivities. We acted out the nativity scene, per tradition. Everyone is getting older now. The past few years have been full of complaining because people thought they were too cool for it but this year everyone participated and it was awesome. I guess this tradition will be completely handed over to the babies one of these years.
We sang Christmas songs while the kids bounced off the walls, and off of each other.
We don't normally get to open a gift on Christmas Eve but Gramma had a gift for each person and my cousins weren't planning to come back the next day so we all got to open our gifts a day early! Papa gave us all $50 in $1 bills. I felt like I was being judged when I used them to buy tickets to a movie later that week. I felt the need to explain to the person working in the ticket booth that if I were a stripper then the dollar bills wouldn't be so straight, or in numerical order. She looked at me as if I were crazy.
When we got back to my parents' house and put the boys to bed, I recruited everyone to help blow up balloons. We used my dad's compressor and that helped things go much faster. We used 150 balloons this year.
Christmas morning did not start as early as I expected. We woke up at 7:40am! It was pretty great.
We had to line up in the hallway and wait until all of the slowpokes (Sam, Sheldon, and Laura - those in-laws are always causing problems!) to get ready. The kids were getting impatient.
I ordered aprons for the boys. I love them but they were mostly interested in candy so they didn't care for them at that time. Luckily they like them now!
After we opened presents, ate breakfast, and got ready for the day, we headed over to Papa and Gramma's for lunch. I think people had fun but I don't really know what happened over there because I fell asleep on the couch. When we got home from their house, I took a three hour nap so I must have been really tired.
That night we got to Skype with Elder Jared in Taiwan. I have never Skyped with an Elder before and it was so fun to talk to him and "see" him for an hour.
Some people went to see a movie that night but I felt like it was a Sunday and not a Tuesday. It was so strange. It felt weird and I was being lazy and didn't want to put on shoes, so I stayed home. It was a great Christmas and I am so glad we were able to spend it with so many siblings. I will be sad when everyone stops gathering for Christmas although I know the time is not far off since we are starting to become a pretty big family!