Christmas Eve was quite nice. Oliver was determined that he was going to go to bed nice and early so that he wouldn't be 'too tired to go to sleep'. We did the whole carrot and cookies thing and then he actually did a good job of falling asleep quickly. Oliver used to be a terrible sleeper (perhaps it's a good topic for another day), but for the last couple of years has mastered going to sleep and sleeping well.
I made shortbread (I do every year, using my great-grandmother's recipe) while Anthony tidied up and wrapped presents.
You might wonder why I mention this, but Anthony hasn't always been so....domestic....
I'll tell you about it some day; but while Anthony has always been a great provider and supportive partner, I have generally been the nurturing/housework/cooking partner. His attitude to this side of family life has changed lately, and it's lovely!
Pressies! Isn't that what Christmas is all about?? ;p
We actually made it to bed before midnight, which was nice, and as usual, I was up before Oliver! In the last 7 or so years, neither of the kids have ever managed to get out of bed before me on Christmas Day. Which is OK, I love sitting in the lounge room and watching their reaction when they see all the pressies.
Of which there were quite a lot this year.
I can't help myself! I've mentioned before that I love giving people presents, and while I try every year to scale down my gift buying, I always manage to buy too many for the kids.
Part of the trouble is that I buy quite a few gifts earlier in the year. I like to be organised, and I'll usually order something through Chrisco and buy some cool things in sales during the year.
Then, of course I'll go shopping just before Christmas (just for a few stocking stuffers!) and see a whole lot of things that I know the kids (or Anthony) would love. So I buy those too! Before you know it, there's a great pile under the tree on Christmas morning.
Not that I'm too worried. Despite the fact that I'm really good at spending money, I spend it well, and never spend so much that we have to go without other things. I've never had a credit card, and I think that helps!
And Oliver doesn't mind either! I know it will probably come back to bite me on the bum one day when he's a spoiled, Dudley Dursley-type child (Last year you bought 37 presents! This year there's only 36!), but seeing his excited face just does it for me every time!
This is what our loungeroom looked like Christmas morning:
And yes, most of those presents are for Ollie!
And the 'other' Christmas duty?
We'd made a decision fairly early in December that we would go to Anthony's aunt and uncle's house for Christmas lunch, because there are always lots of people there and Oliver was keen to be around lots of people. When we got there, we found out that Oliver would be the only kid there, which kinda sucked, but it did mean he had the attention (sort of) of all his uncles and aunties.
So we knew it was going to be a busy day. In the past, we have just gone to see one side of the family, because I've always thought the running around was a little ridiculous. We give our kids all this cool stuff, then whip them out of the house for a good 6 hours - away from everything they've just unwrapped (then come back too exhausted to do anything!).
Since I'd always decided to do Christmas just for the kids, this always seemed a little weird, so one set of family it was...
Was. This Christmas Day, we went to see my parents on the way to Christmas lunch. It actually wasn't too bad, because we had a nice peaceful sit with mum and dad first. Usually I'd prefer to hang out with them, because it's fairly relaxed and quiet. Mum and Dad gave us (as well as some other awesome things) these wooden letters for our lounge room. I think they look quite nice!
This kind of Samuel-related present I don't mind. In fact, I think it's lovely. There were also a couple of other 'Samuel' presents: an Oxfam goat (in Sam's name) from Anthony's aunt and uncle, as well as a Goodberrys voucher for us from Anthony's brothers and sisters-in-law.
When people start to buy things for Sam (so far not too many, but a little disturbing when it does happen), that's when I start to get a little concerned. (I'll talk about this in another post though.)
It was a lovely lunch, where we all ate way too much (surprise surprise!), but there was some nice conversation and a relaxed time with some of my favourite people. So definitely worth it. In the evening, my best friend and her son came over, and we sat like zombies for a little while, before we all decided to pack it in.
So yes, a nice day all in all. But next year, I think I might stay home!