This year we spent the holiday out of town. Not just a couple hours north, like we tend to do, but a few states away. Normally we have the girls on the same holiday schedule, but this year Squirt's dad needed to make a change which meant she would be with us while Ellie would still be with her mom. Since she would not be traveling to see him, we decided to go visit our families instead. Initially it was to keep her from feeling too disappointed, but it evolved. Jim had a cousin get married and we were able to be at the wedding and luncheon, which was wonderful. Jim and his dad were able to spend a couple days in Idaho with his grandparents after his grandma had been in the hospital for a week. It was a weird start to vacation, but I'm glad we were able to be around for all of it.
My parents are getting ready to leave the country on an LDS mission, so we hung out at home a lot while they continued getting ready to leave their home. There were BYU sports, extended family gatherings, and too much junk food to be had.
Tate didn't really understand the whole thing. He had a few small gifts in the darling stocking Jim's mom made him. There was a small car and a book of trucks (with moving wheels!) but I think he'd have been just as happy with a plastic drinking straw or a pen.
Aeryn pretty much won the lottery this Christmas. We've had a rule that she couldn't wear makeup or high heels before age 12, so she was ecstatic when mascara was in her stocking. It is still a touch before her birthday, and the idea that she can wear it is more exciting than actually wearing it. She also landed cute clothes, monster high dolls, drawing supplies, a makeup compact, books, and a kindle! That one blew her mind even more than the makeup.
I never worry about making sure Christmas eve pajamas are holiday themed. This year Squirt's have leopard print bottoms and a bright pink shirt, while Tate ended up with these cute foxes. Ellie has a set of owl pj's still sitting in my suitcase that I bought for Christmas eve before I remembered she wouldn't be with us. I planned to give them to her New Year's Eve, but I completely forgot and it turns out Grandma gave her new pj's on New Years anyway.
We were joined on a very white Christmas morning by Aunt Jeanne and Uncle Barton, Aunt Ann, and my Grandma, even though the roads up to the house were a little tricky to navigate. It was very different from the Christmases of my childhood and it's strange to realize that all the things I remember as being family traditions have faded into oblivion as individual lives have changed. Regardless of that, it was nice to spend the holiday with people who matter to me.