The table was set,
the Christmas card collection in place,
the decorations completed,
the presents all wrapped,
and the Baby Jesus prominently displayed.
Christmas Eve had finally arrived, beginning a three day whirlwind where we hosted three consecutive sets of family to celebrate the holidays. It was especially hectic this year because John had call coverage for a group of six doctors. Fortunately, his discreet attention to the ever-vibrating beeper didn't distract from the fun or the memories.
(However, for the record, and for those who might be interested in calling their physician during holiday hours, unsightly hangnails are not considered emergent or necessarily a need for immediate phone consultation. Chest pain, yes, but swollen thighs, not so much. Just sayin'.)
Christmas Eve morning found Mary Mac and I preparing food and baking cookies for the soon to arrive guests. For some reason, everything tastes better when prepared by a Santa-themed, apron wearing five year old, despite the fact that she scratched the inside of her nose a few, quick times.
From this sweet face, though, I would eat anything she presented. Even if it was a bit on the salty side. (Believe me when I say that I know the jokes are terrible. Please introduce yourself to the mean, little red box in the upper right-hand corner.)
Family arrived and the boy and girl cousins immediately went to opposite corners.
The girl cousins zeroed in on the deliciousness of the newest baby girl, Maggie Parker.
The boy cousins were magnetically drawn to the open field for a game of football.
The brown pigskin tempted them in the same way the swiss cake rolls in the pantry taunt me to come hither. I will be calling my doctor later about the resulting swollen thighs.
In the Bible, and especially in the King James version, the following would be described as this:
These people, Mimi and Dude,
begot four of these people,
who begot all of these little people. It is quite the prolific group. (Can you say prolific on a family blog? Or should it be procreate? I think I will stick with the begetting vocabulary.)
Luckily, there was no begetting from our family for Sophie. She was purchased from a prolific kennel.
It was a fun-filled day, with lots of laughter and noise. Everyone left when my husband looked at me and said, "Joni, we should go on to bed so these fine people can go home."
(Not really. We do know of an older physician who used to dismiss the dinner guests in his home in this manner. Just plain funny.)
Later that evening, we continued our family tradition of opening one gift on Christmas Eve.
The matching pajamas for my children ignited pure joy in my color-coordinating, loving heart. However, it set the gag reflex for my ten year old in forward motion.
This year, there was a bonus present that brought great delight. Georgia Snuggies! Clearly, we are a family with fine, discerning tastes.
After a very full day, little eyelids became very heavy and all three went sound to sleep.
Chandler dreamt of worn out footballs and flags dangling from his belt. (Edited to add: Despite what some of you may think, the hairy leg in the picture does not belong to yours truly.)
Mary Mac dreamt of babies with pink, soft skin.
And Chase dreamt of a day when his mom refrained from the use of the word begot in a public setting.
Christmas Day memories coming tomorrow. Christmas and Artillery - it's what makes a holiday special and bright......