Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas 2013 is in the Books

Well, as I sit here in our recliner with the fire blazing, Christmas tree lights on, accompanied by the Today Show and coffee, all I can think of is: "Christmas 2013 is in the books." Also? "This was our last Christmas without children. Ever." 

It was definitely a different Christmas this year. I admit it, there were a few tears. But we did it, and we strove to make it special, almost forced to start our own traditions. And special it was. 

We kicked off our little family's Christmas celebrations by partaking in our annual tradition: driving around the big neighborhoods in our area looking at Christmas lights. We do it up, too: we don Christmas jammies {aside: watch this}, drive through Starbucks for peppermint hot chocolate and listen to Christmas music on the radio. I love that it's something special that we do together - our own little tradition - and I can't wait until the baby can join us next year. 

As I mentioned Sunday, we alternate years we are with my parents and my in-law's. This was our year to be with my in-law's here in Dallas. {Remember that we did Christmas with my family two weekends ago.} Our original plan was to go over to my in-law's after church on Sunday, open gifts, have supper and come back to our house to spend the night. Then, we were going to do our own Christmas, get dressed and go back over to my in-law's for lunch. Since all of our meals were going to be taken care of, I had only gone to the grocery store for what we needed for the short week and the ingredients for the pie I was going to take to Christmas Eve supper. 

Well, around noon on Christmas Eve, Brandon called me from the gym and the following conversation ensued:

Brandon: "Hey, what are you doing?"
Me: "Making the cherry pie to take to your parents'."
Brandon: "How far along are you in that process?"
Me: "I'm almost done. Why?"
Brandon: "Well, you and I are going to be eating that ourselves tonight, unfortunately." 

He went on to explain to me that my father-in-law had come down with something and had woken up that morning with a fever. No one wanted my 2.5-month old niece or 8.5-months pregnant me around that sickness {or anyone else for that matter}, so Christmas had been postponed until Saturday afternoon. Brandon then went on to tell me that my brother- and sister-in-law had packed up their car on a whim and went to see her family. 

I admit it: I started bawling in the middle of my kitchen. It was ugly. 

I had no food. I didn't know what we were going to do for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, aside from go to church and open presents. I didn't want to brave the grocery store. I just wanted to be like my brother- and sister-in-law and go see my family, but I couldn't. {I can't travel anymore since I'm 35 weeks pregnant.}

After many, many tears, I finally bucked it up, sat down at the table and made a grocery list. I was bound and determined to make Christmas Eve and Christmas Day special, and I didn't care what I had to do to do it, I was going to make it one for the books. 

{If you know me, you know that once I get something in my head and decide I'm going to do it, it's going to get done.}

So I threw on clothes and braved Kroger with the rest of my city, then and came home and cooked all afternoon

Then, we got dressed and went to Christmas Eve service at church. 

Church always has this way of putting things into perspective for me, but especially the Christmas Eve service. I was just reminded that it didn't matter that our Christmas was basically cancelled; we weren't celebrating anything but Jesus' birth. As we sang "O Holy Night" {my favorite Christmas song}, I just closed my eyes and listened to the congregation sing the harmonies and melodies and everything was put into perspective. 

After church, we came home and had chicken spaghetti and garlic bread for supper while watching "A Christmas Story." 

Christmas morning, we were like little kids and were awake by 7:45 a.m. We did our stockings {Oliver, too!} and then started to open our presents from each other. 

Brandon got clothes, boots, a watch band and a FitBit Flex. {He also bought himself a new gun a few days earlier, so Merry Christmas to him!} 

I got pajamas, yoga pants, a new wallet and diamond earrings. Yes, I cried! 

Also: please ignore how swollen I look. Apparently my body is enjoying retaining water these last four-five weeks of pregnancy. Super fun times. 

I truly didn't even have to get Oliver a thing in his stocking; he was more interested in the ribbon and paper. 

The aftermath. 

I made The Pioneer Woman's Baked French Toast for breakfast, and it was a true hit. So yummy and easy. Brandon had mimosas, and I can't wait to partake in that tradition next year! 

After breakfast, we did this all afternoon, watching "Miracle on 34th Street," "The Santa Clause" and "Christmas Vacation" on TV. 

Then, we went on a 1.8-mile walk {I was definitely waddling toward the end, lovely}; I took a nice bubble bath; and we sat outside by a fire in the chiminea. It truly was relaxing. 

I made a yummy supper {if I do say so myself} for just the two of us: pork tenderloin, marinated green beans, dressing, corn casserole, sourdough bread and cherry cream pie. I was so proud of myself! And it was amazing; we have leftovers for days and days. 

So, while it definitely wasn't the Christmas we were expecting, it was still wonderful in its own little way. I told Brandon it was one I will never, ever forget. 


I'm on a mission today to put our decorations away, take down the tree and clean. I know I'm a Grinch, but once Christmas is over, I just want it to be over. That means taking everything down, storing it for next year and prepping this house for baby boy who - depending on if he decides to turn or not - will be joining us in four (!!!) weeks. 


I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas! 


1 comment

  1. This sounds like a really sweet Christmas for the two of you. I love your new items! Merry Christmas!


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