We had the most delightful Christmas! Every year it is just so fun.
To start off, we had a Christmas Exchange Party with Arbons (since we would be with the Grubers for the actual holiday this year). My parents pulled out all the stops. We had a dinner of crab, coconut shrimp, bacon wrapped filet mignon, and those are just the main dishes! It was delicious! We had a great time exchanging gifts. The boys were in heaven.
Jason and I had Camry and Kim...so they both got long cardigans and cozy socks:
Then finally the weekend arrived! Friday night, we headed to the Grubers in Alpine. We started the party with a Dominos pizza dinner (Dominos has become a Gruber favorite). The Riverton Grubers had been living with George and Nancy while they wait for their new house to become available, so they worked hard to make some room for all of us in the basement. Karl was there as well, however the Tuttles and Spencers had different plans this year. They would join us after Christmas so they could spend it at home this year. The Tuttles weren’t going to come at all, but they ended up needing to for a Tuttle wedding.
Saturday was Christmas Eve and the kids had a fun time playing at the house. We went to the traditional church program their ward puts on, set out luminaries, and had an AMAZING prime rib dinner! George is a master at making those ribs. They're simply the best you can ever eat! That night the children and Nancy put on the Nativity and then we prepared the stockings and cookies and milk for Santa. Needless to say, excitement was very high for these cousins. It was really fun seeing Charlie understand what was happening and the enthusiasm spreading over to Colson. It was very joyful, for a lack of a better word.
Jason shooting the potato gun
Sunday morning came and it was Christmas! There had been no snow for weeks, but in the middle of the night it lightly snowed, so we did indeed have a white Christmas...barely! For whatever reason that just made the Christmas spirit complete for me and Jason...it was apparently pretty important to us. The kids played with their Santa gifts, we went to church, we opened the presents from each other, and just spent the day in bliss as we played and played. It was wonderful.
A 2nd Prime Rib:
The Spencers arrived on Monday afternoon.
George and Max thought they had to show us how good mince meat pie is...although it looks beautiful, it still tasted gross! Sorry guys!
Playing Just Dance on Xbox:
The Tuttles arrived Tuesday afternoon.
Tuttles are here!
We got the coziest blanket from the Tuttles!
We spent Wednesday playing as well. Tuttles spent the day away joining the Tuttle festivities. My cousins, the Phillips, were in town so we took the opportunity that evening to meet up with them for dinner at Brick Oven. It was a fun evening.
Thursday was a big day. We celebrated Clara’s birthday with a very special activity. The Tuttles reserved a party room at the Provo Rec Center pool. We had never been to the new(er) Rec Center before and we just loved it! Charlie was able to go down the tube slides by himself with the cousins. He loved it! He went again and again. We did have a little bit of a drowning scare with Charlie, however. He had been on the tube slides (and they don’t let you wear floaties on those, so we had taken them off). He had been escorted back to the party room by one of us where the kids were being given balls to play with in the pool. The party room happens to be across from the main deep pool. I was in that pool with Colson and had seen Charlie inside the party room. While swimming with Colson I felt someone splashing me. The splashing got annoying and I went to turn around to see what little kid was splashing me so I give them a glare or ask them to stop. I turn around to see the eyes of Charlie barely above the water flailing his arms trying to swim up! It wasn't an annoying kid trying to splash me, it was Charlie trying to swim up and get air! At this point, Charlie can only swim with puddle jumpers in open water. I was in complete shock and horror and raced to lift him up. To my relief Charlie was completely un-phased. He understood that he was in trouble for not wearing his floaties, but he wasn’t concerned or afraid. He just got out, put on his floaties, and then was back in the water swimming away. So obviously, he hadn’t been in the water too long, but it was an incredibly scary moment for me. Five minutes later I just started sobbing. It was so scary to see that! I was able to calm down after a little while, but man I was emotional for a bit.
After swimming, we met up in the party room and ate dinner that we ordered from the Rec Center. It was actually really good! We also had yummy cupcakes. Happy 9th Birthday Clara!
Friday we headed to Mutual Dell for a very fun day of sledding. Jason had made a special trip to buy some tubes, but come to find out that Mutual Dell doesn’t allow tubes. That is unfortunate, but we made due with a few sleds that we had and had a blast.
Charlie set up his figurines around the nativity!
As could be predicted, on Saturday we spent that day at the church gym. The kids loved it, of course, and we couldn’t help but do another Talent Show. Saturday was mine and Jason’s turn for food, so for dinner we made BBQ chili, salad, and rolls. That night was New Year’s Eve. The kids got to stay up a little later and eat lots of goodies and watch Jason’s firecrackers.
On Sunday, our little family went home for church because Jason and I had to teach (Jason in YM and I in Sharing Time). It was also a big day since Charlie would be meeting his new Primary teacher. We now have 1:00 pm church. After church we were back in Alpine for dinner and more playtime.
The Tuttles were scheduled to leave Monday, but they decided to stay an extra day, and I’m so glad they did. It would have been sad to say goodbye to them so soon. So on Monday We had another leisurely day, cutting Alli’s hair, painting nails, playing Settlers of Catan. It was wonderful. We actually had to leave that night for Jason’s work. The Tuttles left Tuesday night. The Spencers stayed through the next week.
Colson was actually a nightmare with sleeping over the holiday. I would have to sing him completely to sleep every time, nap or night. It would take forever!! He would keep waking up and checking that you were still there. He also started getting up in the middle of the night and climbing into bed with us. We were all sharing a room together and he could climb out of his pack 'n play. He was also waking up in the morning around 6 or 6:30 am. Eek! It was pretty frustrating.
Jason and I are the “gamers” of the family, along with Alex and Harlan. We are usually the ones who instigate the game playing. We were very happy to play so many games over the break. The games included: Settlers, Dominion, Ticket to Ride, Cover Your Assets, Nertz, Banana Grams, Catch Phrase, Psych (a new app game that we loved), Kings on the Corner, Gin Rummy, War, Go Fish, Spot It, Exploding Kittens. We were quite satisified with our game playing to say the least!
Alli brought some new movies for us to enjoy: Moana, Finding Dory, Secret Life of Pets. They were all very fun and the kids were stoked. It was so cute to see them with their PJs, blankets, and popcorn.