Don't you love Christmas morning shots? Here's Evan getting ready for a Guitar Hero challenge with the girls, Abby trying out the Bop-It, Taylor laughing at Whitney sporting her new hat, and me taking it all in from the couch.
Christmas day was spent with extended family. We had a nice dinner at Mom and Doug's and then on to the Schimbeck's for a party that evening. With a total of 41 family members all packed into the house, it can get extremely loud and crazy. As usual, the guys are gathered discussing sports, politics, guns, etc. The women are gathered discussing children, movies, shopping, etc. The kids gather in the basement playing dress-up, games, or whatever they come up with. There is lots of noise to be heard in EVERY room of the house, but everyone looks forward to it.
Stacy, Aaron, Bart, Evan, Kirby & Gage
(Top) Jo, Linda, Brandy, Katrice
(Bottom) Mindy (holding Beauden), Michelle, Kristal (holding Kira)
Craziest Aunts of all! Mindy & Michelle
Paige, Jacey, Abby, Sydney, Taylor
Allie, Aryn, Whitney
Twenty-five grandchildren in all posing in their traditional matching pj's from Grandpa & Grandma Schimmy!
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Thursday, December 24, 2009
As the poem goes. . .children are SUPPOSED to be "nestled all snug in their beds with visions of sugarplums dancing in their heads", however, the Schimbeck girls are all little night owls like their father. They don't resemble any signs of fatigue. As I've been wrapping up the last of the gifts, I can hear their laughter as they watch a movie. We attended the traditional Panaca Christmas party where they track Santa and his reindeer then had a delicious dinner with Bart & Mindy's family. Afterwards we watched a video on the real meaning of Christmas (Bible story), came home to do our usual tradition of opening one gift (Christmas PJ's), and set out cookies and milk. It's a darn good thing we don't have toys to assemble, dollhouses to decorate, or pajamas to sew like we did when they were little. I think I'll finish Santa's cookies and go to bed myself. What a wonderfully, magical time of year! I love it!
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Evan and I were able to chaperone the 6th grade trip this year with Abby. It was another amazing experience visiting our nation's capital! This was Abby's first experience flying in an airplane. We were able to see Mount Vernon, Ford's Theatre, all the memorials, Smithsonian, Natural History Museum, Nat'l Archives, White House, and Capitol. While in the Capitol Bldg, we watched a session of Congress. (The teachers in our group wanted to teach them some classroom management skills.) Abby liked watching the friendly squirrels that were seen everywhere we went. Thank goodness for digital cameras or we might have only had pictures of squirrels! The highlight of this trip is laying wreaths at Arlington and honoring those who gave their lives for our country; it is certainly hallowed ground. There were nearly 20,000 wreaths placed this year by volunteers. It is a site to behold looking across the hills seeing row after row of headstones with wreaths all lovingly placed with honor. We rode the metro and walked a lot every day taking in as much as we could. We came home exhausted, but are so glad we were able to experience all of this with Abby!
Sunday, December 6, 2009
After church today, we put our favorite Christmas CDs in and decorated our tree and house with all of our traditional ornaments and decor. Watching Evan and Taylor decorate and rearrange is like watching Martha Stewart herself with a little less organization, but the result is always so beautiful! We are all sentimental about different things and so we have a lot of memories and meanings behind all our decorations. It's like an early Christmas as we open up each box and bin. It's always an evening we all look forward to each year. Here's a glimpse around the house for those not close enough to come in and visit in person!