I often reflect upon how different Christmas is as an adult compared to how it was as a child. Being a kid at Christmastime is amazing - just show up and reap all the blessings! Being an adult at Christmastime is also amazing - but boy is it also exhausting. It's wonderful to be busy, because we're celebrating with many family and friends... but it's also nice knowing there's a whole other week off of work following all these celebrations! :)
Here's a disclaimer it sure seems like I always make: I did not take enough pictures at all of the events I'll be sharing. UGH! It makes me crazy, but I guess my hands are full in the moments, too.
Because school went until December 20, there wasn't much time to prepare for the big day. The bad weather earlier in the month meant that our Eubanks Christmas in Caldwell fell on December 21. While Jeremy stayed at home to get the playroom ready, my brother Chris generously piled in the car with Luke, Kate, and I and headed south on 35 (on a VERY rainy morning - he chivalrously drove) to see the family! And, in a very special treat, my sister Megan and nephew Parker made the trip from Illinois! Kate was so excited to meet everyone. :D
I wish there was some magical way for Caldwell and Dallas to be 15 minutes away or so. It's always so wonderful to see Dad's family, and for them to see Luke and Kate. And good Lord is the food just amazing. Our visit was far too brief, as we were out the door by 3:30 or so to head back home. Nevertheless, seeing the Eubankses, Rowlands, Foltermanns, and Featherstons was good for the soul, as always!
We spent the 23rd at Mary and Steve's celebrating with the Calvert clan. I can explain very succinctly why I don't have pictures from that night: IT. IS. MADNESS. It's wonderful madness, and I adore growing up so close to many aunts, uncles, cousins, and their babies. We ate wonderful Mexican food and did a white elephant gift exchange with 50 people there (not a typo there) and children sprinting all over. New babies Harper, Carson, Kate, Hallie, and Claire joined the fold this year. Calvert Christmas is crowded - but every person in the crowd is a blessing to the other. Ceaselessly thankful.
December 24 was spent at church first, and then at Mom and Dad's, where my Texas siblings and our kiddos did our annual exchange. I'm just going to let the pictures tell the tale. :)
It's not a party for Luke without wafer cookies.
JD added Santa to the countdown calendar. (This has always been one of my favorite things about Christmas. I still get a kick out of putting an ornament on the tree.)
Luke retreating to the office when things get over-stimulating
When the "big rip" was over, everyone got in their Christmas jammies (the boys' were provided by Honey, of course) before heading back to our houses.
So many reasons to celebrate - and the best was yet to come!