Me on Christmas eve morning after my snowy walk with Rosie...
Suzanne made an ice cream stand for the dollhouse people.
Char with Suze's ice cream stand.
Evelyn Joy, my beautiful 12 year old daughter...she cut her curly hair, I think it is adorable. She will hate me for putting this on here, but hey, she ran in front of the camera...
Camille loves Ashley...and so do I. Having her here isn't like having company, it is like having family around. When she gets up in the morning and I am sitting here on my computer having coffee and the counter is full of dishes and the floor is decorated with various random items, I don't feel like I should jump up and get busy. That is my definition of when a person is "family". (and Debbie, that is how I manage to blog every day. ha.)
I like how Suze is holding Camille and Ashley up on the couch has Charlotte Claire on her lap...we need more babies here!
Joseph is so handsome with his hair cut.
Sonja, Joseph, Mali, Aaron, Ben...I like how Joe and Aaron are holding General Thunder and Kitty Kitten
Ashley, Char, Evelyn, and Abigail
No one around here appreciates my attempts to capture memories...this is Emily.
Emily always picks out the best presents. She had Camille's name, and got her these tiny princess books, a huge Rapunzel coloring book, and shiny new crayons. (she also helped Jon pick out his s.s. gift, plus she paid for it.)
Joseph - 20, Mali - 17, and Aaron - 19...Jonathan got Mali the polar bear hat for secret Santa.
The tree is still standing.
The snow is falling down gently, the ground is covered and the road is rather slippery for clumsy me with my strong tugging dog. I didn't do the hills, but turned around and went the other way up the road instead. Rosie loves the snow. She either is really excited about Christmas or she is just plain hyped up because of the white stuff on the ground, but she was crazy this morning. It was neat because I could see all the animal tracks that she was sniffing.
I am excited about Christmas too. We did our Secret Santa last night because everyone was here, and we just wanted to. Ashley had my name and got me two new pairs of slippers, purple furry boots, and dearfoams fuzzy clogs. Paul had Jon's name, and got him a pocket car, a little remote control thing the size of a Matchbox car. I got messed up with my secret Santa, of course, again. I thought I had Mirielle, and was all set, then I realized that Camille had her...and Char had Sonja...and I had Evelyn. Well, I knew last month that I had Evelyn, and I wrapped her gift and put it aside in my room. When we went to Jamaica, the kids put all the wrapped presents from my room under the tree, including Ev's. Well...last night when it was time to get out the s.s. presents...uh-oh...I mistakenly thought I had Mirielle, then I remembered that was who Camille had, then I looked for Ev's stuff, and it wasn't there...blah. I gave her the new Wii I had bought since ours was broken. Now our old one works again, but the new one came with the game Wii Dance 3, which the girls wanted, so...Evelyn was happy and thrilled. Now we have an extra Motion Plus remote, too. I also gave her a Babies game, in which you choose clothes, ect., for your Wii baby.
Paul and Samuel went out to the wildlife refuge for a hike. We are supposed to be having brunch this morning. The tree is lit, the kids are excited, Kitty Kitten is attacking Jon's pocket car.
I am happy. But, as always on the holidays, I miss my parents. I miss my brother. My brother Billy was always there on Christmas, at my brother Bob's house, with his stuffing/black olive/sausage snacks, and his dark humor. Of course I remember the Christmases of our childhood too, when he got his Big Jim camper and the Mighty-Mo truck, and the Creepy Crawlers Maker. Mostly I miss my mother though. I wanted to call her this morning so badly it made me cry. She would want to know every single gift that was exchanged last night, and she would be so proud of the way the older kids spent their own money on the things they so thoughtfully chose for their siblings. (Joseph bought Margaret the Sergeant Pepper Album from the Beatles, and some Starbuck's coffee). She would be so proud of me that I have lost this weight, I know it broke her heart to see me so heavy for all those years, but she never said anything. She would have been thrilled if she just could have been here last night, in the midst of all the noise and mayem. I guess that I am now the one who gets slippers for Christmas is sad, I used to buy them for her. When I was out shopping, sometimes I would see something and think, "Gramma would like that...oh yeah, not." Because it is not always in the forefront of my mind that she is no longer here. I have been mighty thankful for her lately. Thankful that she taught me by example that it is okay to let kids cook and make messes and enjoy life. Thankful that she never got uptight about anything. Thankful that she always always gave me the time of day, and no story was too boring for her to listen to. I just plain miss her and would give anything to spend one more day with her.
And now that I have made myself cry, I shall go get busy around here, for there is no such thing as a true day off...(oh, but yesterday I had one, sort of...Abigail had to do errands, so I went with her...we walked to Pizza Hut while her car was being fixed and had lunch and talked and talked and talked...neither of us liked all the hours spent doing banking and waiting for the car to get fixed, but we made the most of it, and it was indeed like a day off...)(we also went to Walmart on one of the worst Walmart days of the year, to get dog food and cat food and some topping for Mirielle's homemade New York cheesecake....now THAT was an adventure...)