Wednesday, December 28, 2011

We Wish You a Merry Christmas Day!

After a month of buildup for Christmas, the week leading up to Christmas this year was a little bit disappointing.  Jared caught a virus that was not your run of the mill cold.  He was coughing all weekend the week before Christmas, and on Monday and Tuesday he got worse instead of better.  We took him to see the doctor, who declared Jared to be on the mend.  That afternoon he deteriorated into a sad little mess with a high fever. When Todd got home from work, he gave Jared a blessing and then sent us to urgent care.  We spent the night going back and forth between medications to get the fever to come down and stay down.
I thought that nothing on earth could be more sad than a feverish little Jared refusing to leave the couch, but I was wrong.  Soon Eloise caught the same bug, but it was stronger in her tiny little body.  She refused to eat for several days, and had coughing fits that made her throw up several times.  She also had a high fever, but we didn't want to give her ibuprofen on her already upset stomach, so we were stuck with just tylenol. We had two separate trips to the doctor for her, too.  She has finally just started eating again.
As you might imagine, we didn't sleep very much last week.  We are just now beginning to emerge from our sleepless haze.  To the best of my fuzzy recollection, we did have Christmas this weekend.  We spent Christmas Eve baking cookies for Santa, delivering the extra cookies to our neighbors, and playing in the yard.   We also read the Christmas story out of the New Testament story book, put our star on top of the Christmas tree, and watched some videos about the birth of Jesus Christ, available here.  Later, Jared was excited to set out some snickerdoodles for Santa, along with one carrot for the reindeer to fight over.
I'm not sure he ever understood just what Santa was coming for.  After we tucked him into bed, we had to reassure him several times that Santa would not be coming into his room after he fell asleep.
When Christmas morning finally arrived, a very excited mom and dad had to direct Jared to his stocking.  He was finally convinced to look inside it, and then refused to proceed with the morning's festivities until he got to eat his orange from Santa. This helmet is not new.  We got it out for the tricycle, which is new.  The helmet was a lot more interesting, though.
Eloise wasn't really ready to be up when we took her out to open presents.  She didn't last very long before she started crying to go back to bed.
Here is a sampling of our Christmas morning experience, for our family that had to suffer through Christmas without us this year.
And here are some pictures of our Christmas afternoon, after church.  Jared and Eloise gave Daddy a new game for the wii, and they spent the afternoon playing it together.

 You'll notice, in the pictures above. that although Todd does not move, the child in his lap changes.  That was Todd's version of keeping the kids out from under my feet while I prepared our Christmas feast.  We had ham, rolls (Grandma Jolley's recipe, but never quite as good as Grandma Jolley made), au gratin potatoes, salad, and a chocolate pie, which I made from scratch.  I should have waited to make the pie until after I opened my Christmas present from my family: a kitchenaid countertop mixer.  I am not exaggerating when I say that making a fluffy meringue with nothing more than a whisk and elbow grease takes no less than 45 minutes.
When we put the table cloth on the table, Jared said, "It's Thanksgiving!"  You can tell we are really classy eaters, since that is the only other time he remembers eating off a table cloth.  The confusion continued for several days as we ate leftover ham, and Jared kept asking for, "More gurkey, please."

Eloise, still not eating at this point, loved to watch us eat. For all of our complaining about her not sleeping through the night, she is an extremely content child during our waking hours.  If she is left out of something, she will just drag herself over to where the action is and try to climb our legs until we put her at eye level with the fun.
It was great to have this day to enjoy our little family and remember the birth of Jesus Christ.  As much as we missed the extended family this year, we are really glad we weren't traveling with the kids sick.  We have also been really busy with the paperwork and negotiations for buying a house, so we were glad not to have to work around a trip right now.  

Over the next few days, we got to enjoy all of the great gifts that came from family and friends.  These balls were a winner, Grandma and Grandpa Knight.  Eloise hardly plays with anything that isn't a ball or on wheels.
We used this apostle matching game from Aunt Colette for family home evening.  I think Jared never actually stopped playing it.  He keeps bringing me balloons with the pictures of the apostles on them and asking, "Who's that?"  He's keeping me on my toes with remembering all of their names.
Thanks for thinking of us, family, even though you are all far away.  Merry Christmas!  We will see all of you soon.

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