Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas: Peterson Style

I know it is only Christmas Eve, yet we are done with our Christmas with the kids.  This is a tradition that we started many years ago.  Since we always travel on Christmas day (we have only spent 1 Christmas at home with the kids) we want the kids to be able to enjoy their presents (mostly toys) before we pack up & head out of town.  There is no fun in opening gifts the night before or the morning of then saying "ok, leave it all, we have to leave".  So we started opening gifts no later than December 23.  Sometimes it has even been the 22nd or 21st.  Whatever floats our boat depending on what we have going on, if we are ready and how anxious we are to get the kids their presents.

I will admit this year has been very hard and just plain different for us (perhaps mostly me who "does" most of the Christmas stuff).  Jim & the kids put up the Christmas tree while I was in Mexico.  Part of me wanted to protest that they didn't wait for me.  Yet, I knew that it was a detail that I had to just not worry about.  Then when I thought I would have had 2 free weekends to shop & prepare, we ended up devoting to the last moments of our good friend Joy who, at the age of 43, lost her battle to cancer after only 3 months of diagnosis.  That has been really hard on all of us and that really just changes your whole perspective on life and such.  Especially Christmas & what it's really all about.  The birth of our Lord Jesus Christ is what our focus should be.  Considering our dear friend just entered into the presence of our Savior, we should be thinking about and HAPPY about nothing else this holiday season.

Part of me just didn't care about any presents whatsoever.  And even though, I am a HUGE giver, I even resorted to not giving any presents to anyone except our kids.  That was REALLY hard for me.  I said I would at least bake something for people, but for the most part I just didn't have time.  The last few weeks have been busy crazy with something going every single night and many of my days packed as well.  Don't forget we have a birthday last week too. All added up, by Wednesday, December 21 I did not have one single present bought.  Finally instinct and human nature kicked in and within less than 24 hours I had all presents bought & wrapped ready to go.

So, per tradition, last night we had our Peterson family Christmas.  Jim "disappeared" for about 2 hours leaving me frustrated and about to lose it.  Unbeknown to me though he set on out a quest to get me what he knew I really wanted for Christmas.  He had pretended to not know what I wanted & kept asking me for hints & ideas about what to get.  I didn't want to outright tell him....yes, I admit, I felt like he SHOULD know what I've been aching for.  Long story short, cause I never told you guys about it, I accidental ruined my ipod  touch that he had gotten me for me birthday day a year & a half ago.  I've worked really hard to not whine & complain or feel entitled to one, but I wanted another one really really bad.  Even then I didn't feel like I deserved one or deserved to ask for one.  So I didn't want to tell him that is what I wanted.  Anyway, he went missing and I was a little ancy & impatient about WHHHHHHY he was nowhere to be found.  Lo an behold he DID go on a quest to get what I wanted, but since it was last minute there was none in stock in our town so he drove 45 minutes away to hunt down, find & buy one just for me.   (heart warming awwwwwwe)

Jim saved the night & we were able to all sit down & open presents and enjoy time with just our kids.  Today they are enjoying their gifts and I am getting some baking/treat making done.  So enjoy our pictures from last night.  Please do stop & consider the real reason for Christmas.  It WILL bring you greater joy than any ipod, toy, gadget or anything you get this holiday season.

Merry Christmas from the Peterson Family Zoo
 and especially those animals
(side note about the pictures, there was face painting at the mall so some of the kids had things on their faces.  I wasn't worried about us looking picture perfect.  I like to capture us just as we are.)

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