Saturday, December 27, 2008

ONE OF THE BEST CHRISTMAS' EVER!!!

Our family made a real effort to simplify Christmas this year. We did!!! and it turned out to be so much fun.
We began by not putting up a Christmas tree and only pulling out a very few of the MANY Christmas items we have. We did nothing on the exterior of the house except we have 3 front windows that show from the street and in them we placed a single 3 light electric candle. The lights on each side were clear and the top center one was red. No picture :o( but I hope you can picture it in your minds. It looked very nice and simple.
(click to enlarge all pictures)
Our manger scene that I purchased probably 45 years ago and has been a mainstay in our house every Christmas.
My angel collections, that remains year round but I dressed it up with this silver garland. The large blue & silver ornament on the right was a gift from a woman who works with Suzette. She makes ornaments for everyone in their office and she told Suzette, "What is your mother's favorite colors? I want to make her an ornament because she is your mother and you are such a nice, wonderful person." Now, I ask you, how sweet was that?!!!!! I have never even met this woman. I was so touched by this act of kindness and her kind comment about my daughter.

My Father Christmas collection. The large one on the right in red was the beginning of this and given to me about 10 years ago by my forever friend, Joan, Jacque gave the the large fancy one on the left on her first Christmas back with us after Katrina in 2005. I bought the two small ones for myself probably 8 years ago. The lighted Christmas tree on the wall was a gift to us 13 years ago, by Oksana's other grandmother, Beryl, on Oksana's first Christmas. I love it.

At Thanksgiving this year Suzette gave each of our families a gift of a little kit with these 4 shapes of wooden ornaments and paints with the instructions that we were going to draw names and were to paint an ornament for that person and bring it Christmas. What a cute idea. These are our 4 we painted and decorated. The red stocking Mickey did for Dave, the Chrismas tree was our extra one I did for us, the blue heart & star was the one I did for Benny which was actually from David. Since he didn't get into town until Christmas Day at 6:30 p.m. I drew Benny's name and painted it for David. The mitten with the star was mine for Jessica.

Here is the little Christmas tree at Dave's & Suzette's, after we had opened all the packages, with all the ornaments we had each done and placed on the tree. We saved this for last. Suzette had told us Thanksgiving that she would award a prize to the one who decorated the best ornament.

Here is the winning ornament. Painted by Jacque and given to Marc.


Suzette bought all the guys these Grinch t-shirts.
Dave, Mickey, Aric, Marc, Benny
She gave them the shirts as they arrived and they had to put them on. How cute!!!
Aric absolutely hates shirts like this and at first was not going to put his on. After I told him, "If you're going to act like that and not put it on then you are not going to get to open any Christmas presents." He soon changed his mind....but it took him awhile....he can be very stubborn.

These are the cute shirts Suzette bought for us girls.
"Jingle" with little bells on them
3 Generations
Susan (Mom) Suzette (Daughter) Jessica (Granddaughter) Oksana (Granddaughter) Jacque (Daughter) & Lindsey (Jessica's roommate)

I am so happy to show off our oldest granddaughter, Jessica!!!
She moved here to Tulsa a year ago and we are so happy about that. She goes to college and works as a waitress so she is "missing in action" at so many of our doings. This is her first semester and she made 3-A's & 1-B ;o( in English comp.)
I had bought all us girls (bought and wrapped up one for me, too!) these Toe Socks. We all unwrapped them at the same time and had to put them on.
It was so much fun and so funny!!!
You can tell the good time we were having.

Our gift to the guys was a jar of Mickey's honey, a plate of 6 different chocolate candies Mickey & I had spent days fixing, and a loaf of date nut bread. I also fixed a plate of the candies and a banana nut bread for Jessica & Lindsey.
All that work and I didn't take one picture while making it or the finished project!

Suzette was hosting this year and she decided she didn't want us to do the traditional big family dinner and opening packages on Christmas Eve and then getting together again on Christmas Day to celebrate my birthday.

So, instead, for the first time in my life I can EVER remember we did not open packages on Christmas Eve. Mickey & I attended our church services and our Pastor and his wife served the entire congregation Communion. It was a wonderful service.

Then we all met Christmas Day at 11 o'clock for a big brunch at Dave & Suzette's.

Here are all the guys (except Marc?) in the kitchen. I love to see men in the kitchen... don't you?
Dave & Suzette fixed scrambled eggs, bacon, biscuit with butter & jelly, fruit bowl with a special fruit dip Dave makes out of cool whip & cream cheese that is SO good. Benny (who is a wonderful cook) brought sausage patties, sausage & gravy and some home made Pumpkin bread his mother had made. There was coffee, milk, chocolate milk, orange juice and soda pop to drink.

After we joined hands and Mickey said the prayer we loaded our plates up, buffet style, and all headed for the table in the dining room.

This is the only picture I'm showing of all of us eating and I'm showing it to show the red tablecloth with white emboidery and gold for the candle wicks.
I did this tablecloth a long time ago. Since we now have a round dining room table I gave it to Suzette years ago and it fits her large dining table just perfect.

We were celebrating THREE birthdays and Marc brought the Birthday Cake.
Mine (25th- 71 years) Jacque (22nd - 53 years) Jessica (23rd - 23 years)
3 Generations-Grandmother, Daughter, Granddaughter

After brunch we planned to open the Christmas gifts but Aric said, "No let's have them open the birthday gifts first." We were all shocked.....I think he was making amends for his earlier attitude about the Grinch shirt :o)

There were MANY lovely birthday gifts for the three of us but I am showing only one.Marc gave me this beautiful crystal Angel to add to my collection.

I am holding a small. round, stainless piece in my right hand. This piece plugs in and has a light in it. You set the Angel on this. It has two setting on the base. One for lighting up the Angel and the second for lighting up and turning the Angel around and around. I love it!!!

If you're a regular reader you know I always cry over the sweet, loving, wonderful, birthday, Christmas, Mother's Day, etc. cards that my family buy me.
Before I began opening my birthday packages and cards I told Lindsey, "Lindsey, I always cry over the cards they give me." She said, 'Yeah, I know....Jessica already told me." Jessica is laughing and saying, "I DID!!!"

So I opened each one and read it and cried!!!!
I also gave Mickey strick instructions NOT to take any UGLY crying face pictures of me!!!
After all that it was FINALLY time to dive into opening ALL these Christmas presents.
Aric handed out the Birthday gifts and Oksana handed out the Christmas gifts.

I am only showing 2 more of the MANY Christmas gifts.

Marc with the head flash light Jacque got all the guys.

After the last gift had been opened Benny went out and wheeled in his gift for Jacque. Two, new tires for her Pontiac Gran Dam GT.

Most everyone ended up having a ball playing on the WII. Of course Aric won every game and challenge they did!!!!!
***************
We left Suzette's & headed for our friends, Don & Barbara's home. 2 of their 4 children were there for Christmas and we got to see all of them, their grandchildren and had some delicious homemade pumpkin & pecan pie.

I had a plate of the candies for them and we got them this Cross with all the names of Jesus.
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LAST, BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST....
Marc picked up David at the airport at 6:30 p.m. He was able to save $100 on the ticket by flying Christmas day instead of the day before. See......I've tried to teach out children to be frugal, too!!!!
When he got here he had to put on his waiting Grinch shirt for the pictures.
Our TWO sons

My favorite 3 guys in the whole, wide world!!!!
Dave will be with us until January 2nd. YEAH!!!!

IT IS TRULY THE BEST OF TIMES IN OUR LIVES
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And yet one more Christmas blessing......Ginger called me on the 24th and we had the nicest long conversation!!!! Such a sweet surprise to hear her sweet voice over the phone....I recognized it instantly after having finally met her.


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25 comments:

Humble wife said...

Wonderful wonderful wonderful! I have so many thoughts about how neat it was sharing your Christmas/birthday~ so lovely, so fun~ so family!!!! I loved every moment. Thank you so much Susan...
Jennifer

Betty said...

Looks so fun! I´m so happy for you that you had such a good time and that your family loves you. You are blessed!

Frazzled Farm Wife said...

I smiled the whole time I read your blog today! It sounded like such a wonderful time with a wonderful family and it looked like everyone had such a great time. What a blessing!

Me Maw said...

What a wonderful and blessed christmas you guys had!

Loved seeing all the photos!

Barbara said...

Glad you had the best time of your lives.

Susan said...

Well...Happy Birthday to YOU! I loved reading this post and all the many fun things you did on Christmas Day. Wow! What memories you are making with your family.

I hope you're doing well and enjoying each and every sweet moment!

Love,

Susan

It's All Good! said...

I so enjoyed this, Susan. How fun with all the funny T's and the toe socks. What a beautiful family you have.

~Just A Thought Ginger said...

What a wonderful recap. I love the matching shirts, such a cute idea.

You are always right, family is the best! Our finally got in after flight delays due to fog. They were only about 13 hours late :(

It was wonderful to talk to you the other day. I promise to call once in awhile. It's nice to hear your voice.

We are waiting for Jen to get home from work and then have our party. Hopefully I will have a recap soon.

annie said...

LOve all the pics! I have planned to do a Christmas recap but haven't had a chance yet! Glad to hear you had such a wonderful day!

Sharon Lynne said...

What a fun Christmas you had! Thank you for sharing and giving us a glimpse into your family.

I noticed the face mugs in the backgroud on your bookshelf in the picture with your sons. My mother has those same mugs. I wonder how old they are?

Joy in the Burbs... said...

Love the pictures. I need t know where she got the Grinch shirts. I so need one for my husband.
Love the ladies shirts and socks. Ya'll look so cute. Looks like lots of fun. I love your simple Christmas this year.
It looked simply wonderful!

Joy

Michelle said...

What a wonderful Christmas! I love the socks!

Pear tree cottage! said...

O! what wonderful Christmas you all had and the simple way you did it made it all the more special to all........I adore the fact that I could see nothing but beautiful smiles in every picture.....so lovely Susan.

Lee-ann

MightyMom said...

Glad you had a great Christmas and Birthday!!

simpler is more fun. I love the shirts and socks idea. Too fun!

Nadine said...

What wonderful pictures. It shows what fun you all had. I love the ornament idea that's really memorable.

retha said...

Good to see it was such a lovely time together.

Kathy said...

I love the fun, I love the socks, and I love the joy that we can see in your post Susan. I am locked in on the phrase of the Christmas carol, "Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy." I'm thinking of the comfort and the joy that seems to flourish when we come together in friendship and family celebration.

Shelley said...

Hello! First time to visit your blog. Wow, it looks like you had a wonderful holiday! Happy belated birthday to you!

Tammy said...

Oh, I'm so glad you all had such a great Christmas, Susan! Loved all the pictures- and the sock pictures are so cute!
Thank you for sharing your day with us!
Hugs,
~Tammy

Jillian, Inc said...

WOW! What a wonderful post to read...and loved all the photos. I can really tell your family has a great time being together.

Pam said...

Just what it's all about - Jesus, Family, Love, and Fun --oh and FOOD of course!!! I loved that read dining room!! This was a fun tour of your season! Happy Belated Birthday.

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

I enjoyed reading about your Best Christmas! We had a great one too!

A belated Happy Birthday to you! My grandmother was also born on Christmas Day, and she was also a special lady!

Katherine

Thanks for your comment on The Testament New Year's project. Good idea to use some of the things on your blog. I have wished the Blogger owner would sell DVDs of our monthly blogs, etc.

K

diana said...

it does sound like a wonderful Christmas. time spent as a family is the best gift in my book.

by the way, happy belated birthday. sorry i wasn't on line to wish it on your birthday. i knew it was Christmas day, just didn't get on a computer there for a few days.

Momma Roar said...

Sounds like a wonderful time! I'm so glad you and Ginger got to talk on the phone!! She's such a blessing!

Ross' Cottage said...

I love the matching shirt and socks idea. I want to do that someday with my own girls. I will wait till the are older and don't mind matching their mom! Something about teens that don't like to be matching mom! Any way I love it! Looks like you all had a wonderful time. I wish you a belated Merry Christmas.