Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas 2015


Blogging on Christmas Day seems kind of sad, but it’s not! It’s a wonderful, relaxing, lazy day for us this year. We’ll get together with Dale’s family tomorrow and my family the day after; there is much joyous, loud, happy family time ahead, so for now we’re enjoying having nothing to do and nowhere to be.
Yesterday morning, Neve and I met some friends at Assiniboine Park for some sliding, hot chocolate and icicle-bashing. The duck pond isn’t open yet due to thin ice, so we couldn’t skate. We had an early dinner (fettuccini with scallops) and then went to the Christmas Eve service at church. We normally go to the service at our old church because the kids love the tradition of lighting candles and singing Silent Night at the end. But this year our church combined the Christmas Eve service with the kids’ Sunday school program, and since it’s Neve’s last year of being involved in the children’s program, we changed our routine. The children acted out the nativity while a narrator told the story. Neve had a very small role as the innkeeper, but for some reason that part of the story was entirely missed. I don’t know if there was a change in the script or if it was an error, but no one mentioned it to her before or acknowledged it after. Even though it was a tiny part, Neve is always excited about performing and was pretty sad about missing her moment in the spotlight. If she becomes disenchanted with the church in the future, we can probably pinpoint it to Christmas Eve 2015.
Luckily, her disappointment diminished as soon as we got home and opened a few gifts and fired up the chocolate fondue. I started a puzzle, we went for a moonlit walk, and watched The Grinch. And then suddenly it was Christmas morning. Santa was good to us this year and everyone is happily playing/watching/listening to their gifts. And I’m blogging.

Christmas Eve dinner (don't worry Mom, the kids are drinking sparkling pear juice)

The past couple of weeks have been a busy, Christmas-y/birthday-y blur. First of all, Dan and Jenn surprised us with a weekend visit. Dan turned 50 (!!) this month, and since Jenn is the Wizard Queen of Surprises and Good Ideas, she secretly planned this visit. Since Dan’s 49th birthday, Jenn has planned one interesting event/outing, etc. each month such as zip-lining, go-kart racing, or a concert, culminating this month with the surprise visit home. She told Dan about the trip two weeks in advance, but the rest of us (except my nephew and brother) knew nothing until Dan & Jenn suddenly showed up at a housewarming party for my nephew. The housewarming party turned out to be a ruse just to get us to Rosenort; the real party was a birthday party at my parents’ house. So that was pretty fun. In the few days they were here, they got to see my great-nephew’s hockey game, my nieces’ Sunday school Christmas program, and Neve’s piano recital. My aunt took some of us to lunch before Dan & Jenn went to the airport, so they certainly made the most of their time here.

Other December events included Neve’s school concert, Spencer’s improv show, gymnastics party, our neighbourhood party, strep throat (Chloe), the acquisition of drums (more on that another time), cookie-baking with Grandma and all the cousins, even the Miami ones! - and of course, my birthday. It was a great day: my sister brought me donuts and a smoothie, there were presents on the door knob, email and texts, cards and phone calls, convincing – nay, forcing – the children to sit with Santa,* watching a movie all by myself in the basement, sushi for dinner, presents, and family over for cake in the evening. I wish it was my birthday every day.
Many gingerbread people were produced at Grandma's. Spencer's work was easy to find: some men had two heads, others had none, and there was even a vertical half-man.

Playing outside

And no (Corinna), I am not learning to love winter. I just hate it less than I used to, largely due to the incredibly warm mitts I bought this year. Turns out the warmer I am, the more tolerable cold weather is. Who knew?

That’s all for now. I must resume my circuit of puzzles, reading, chocolate, and games. Merry Christmas!
* The kids agreed to pose for a photo with Santa on the condition that I do not post the photo here or on any form of social media. It is however, posted proudly on my fridge.


someone said...

Merry Christmas, Ellen!! And Dale, Chloe, Spencey and Nevey!! I LOVE the photos of you and niece, and the one of Neve in the snow. Sounds like you are having a wonderful Christmas, even with the snow and cold! xoxoxo Sio

Anonymous said...

Awww, man, it's only visible on the fridge! So, I'm coming for coffee in January. Msg me a day you're free.

And awww, man, you're not learning to love winter...:(

Merry Christmas!