Happy Friday friends! I’m still dragging around here in an after Christmas coma. Lauren and her family were here for the whole week and just left today, so we’ve been celebrating and hanging out as a family for days now. We also had some wonderful family time with Mark’s family for two days as well and so I have a lot of sharing to do today! You’ve always loved seeing my family and now you get to see our celebrations with both families as we celebrate Christmas together. It’s been so nice being part of Mark’s bigger family, I love how close they are too and it was fun hosting a gathering at our house this year.
Mark was off for over 2 weeks for Christmas and that was so nice. It was so fun to have Mark’s family over to our house on Christmas Eve afternoon. There were about 20 of us and we gathered round the dining table and hung out in the family room. I made a ham and everyone brought some sides and it was delicious. His 4 girls and their spouses/significant others were with us too, along with all 4 grandchildren. Mark’s sister, Kim and her husband and 3 adult children came too and we sure enjoyed the day of just being together, eating and celebrating.
This is cute little Rose who turned 1 in October. She sure is fun to dress, we got her this outfit for her birthday. Pretty in pink!
These little ones sure make Christmas more fun. Baby Henry, our red headed cutie pie is such a doll.
Mark’s mom has red hair, so maybe that’s where he gets it. He’s such a doll with his red hair, fair skin and blue eyes.
He’s such a happy guy too and smiles constantly.
Mark’s other grand boys, JJ and Jaxton always have fun and he got them some remote controlled cars for outside, which they played with that afternoon. They are all boy and are always on the go.
Little Rose got a new doll!
Mark’s sister, Kim, and part of her family around the kitchen table. I didn’t get pics of everyone who was there, but we had such a nice day. It’s nice to actually use our dining room during these get togethers.
Eating, visiting, and relaxing was the mode of the day.
Mark’s mom and day got family pictures for Christmas, taken at Thanksgiving.
Mark and cutie pie Rose. She’s such a doll and growing so fast.
On Christmas Day, Mark and his daughters have had a tradition of going out to Chinese late Christmas day, so we did that again this year. That tradition started after watching A Christmas Story for so long, they decided to do that too. My family is talking about doing the same next year. This is the whole crew after eating Chinese. There are surprisingly a lot of people who do Chinese on Christmas day!
We came back to the house and opened a few presents and played with the babies afterwards. Look at those sweet dimples!
Christmas morning we went to my sister’s house for breakfast and opening presents with my family. It’s a relaxing time too and takes what seems like hours to open them all. Those girls are pretty spoiled with all the presents they get.
Mark and I on Christmas morning. I love celebrating with both our families.
What a blessing to have both our parents with us still. We know that each year could bring changes and it’s hard to think about that, but that’s reality and I’m so thankful for each and every Christmas we have with all of them. Dad decided to dress up a little for Christmas and I was immediately taken back to his Pastor days and how he looked when he dressed up then.
Mark and Parker have bonded since she first met him and she loves it when he’s there. Bailey, my sister’s dog has to tolerate Parker wanting to hold him all the time.
Lauren’s cute family in their PJ’s again.
Parker got a new bike and Iris got a tricycle.
Santa Bruce got his Santa pants on and commenced to handing out presents as he always does.
He had a little helper this year too.
As you can imagine, those girls get excited over Christmas. I got Parker this Aquabeads set. I’m not sure what it does, but I’m sure she will love it.
Bailey taking it all in.
Mom and dad in the big chair. Mom got a cross stitched Iris ornament that Lauren made for her. Lauren gets her stitching abilities and interest from mom.
Iris and her mouse bank.
Lauren made both girls button boxes. She had seen this somewhere and decided to give them a handmade one. They loved them! Renee and I cleaned out our buttons and gave them all to the girls to take home.
Both girls got headlamps. I think they do some camping out these days.
They both had to try those on.
Mom got a personalized tin from Lauren of the girls. So cute!
Those presents took awhile, but we made it through!
Iris and her new gloves and hat.
Bruce’s mom, Doris, is a very talented artist and she painted this beautiful painting of Lauren and Philip’s engagement picture on canvas. Lauren was so surprised and touched that she got all teary eyed. It’s gorgeous and looks just like the photograph!
Mark and Iris playing with the button box.
Santa Bruce taking a well deserved break.
We had planned on doing a taco bar for Christmas afternoon, but Mark and I were leaving to eat Chinese and no one else was hungry either after a huge breakfast, so we waited until the next night to eat them. They really tasted good then!
I made the chicken and peppers and onions and guacamole and Renee made the beef and fixings. It was delicious! We have almost decided that next year we’re not going to try for a big meal after Christmas breakfast, but going out for Chinese sounds pretty good to us too!
It was a wonderful week of celebrating, family time and just being together. There was plenty of movie watching, eating, and just hanging out which really a big part of what Christmas is all about. Of course, Jesus is the reason we celebrate, but having a close family is the icing on the cake. I’m so blessed to have two families to celebrate with now, so I hope you enjoyed this peek at how we celebrate and love!
I haven’t taken down my Christmas yet, but will wait until after New Year’s. I’ll be ready then and am determined that January/February will be my months to organize. I’ve been wanting to get our basement whipped into organizing shape and this is the year to do it! We’re also planning a pretty significant kitchen renovation in January too, so there will be plenty going on around here to share with you. I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas holiday as well and are ready for a New Year!
I’ll be back on Monday to share all the projects we completed around here this year. It was pretty amazing to look back and see what all we’ve done in a year! It’s a huge motivation to keep going and get more checked off the list! I’m also making it a link party which I have been doing for a few years for other bloggers to join up too, so stay tuned for that and I’ll get back on my normal schedule again before too long. But January is traditionally a slow month for me, so I may not be posting quite as much.