Wow, I have gotten behind. I am sure that you understand - with all of the commitments that we have had over the last few days, there just hasn't been time to sit down and blog. Actually, there hasn't been time to sit down to do anything.
Christmas Eve was busy. As always, we had a bad night previously and then the kids were up early. We got up and made our cupcakes for Baby Jesus (there is nothing that spells celebration for Pk like cupcakes). She felt that Jesus would want vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting and sprinkles. It worked for me.
For a special treat (as if we needed one, we will all be needing Weight Watchers after the holidays!), we decided to take Pk to her favourite restaurant for an order of hotcakes and sausage. She likes to call it "Old McDonald's" - I think you know the place that I mean. The rest of the day was fairly quiet at home. We did some cleaning but the number 1 item on the agenda was a good nap for each child and we had to eat dinner early since we had church at 6 and I had to get there early to set out treats. Of course, we had our yummy supper of meat pie. Sadly, Pk had just gotten up from her nap and was very grouchy. Again, while we never allow it in the house normally, Dh picked her up some K.D. which she happily ate.
There were two services at church. The first was an audience participation nativity service. It was wonderful. The minister asked for volunteers to come up and do the readings and paly the parts in the pageant. Pk refused to do it but Dh was volunteered by the minister to play the part of an angel, complete with a pair of fairy wings. It was a fun way to tell the story and the congregation got really involved. One poor mother spent most of it at the front with her daughter, a 2 year old shepherd who kept trying to steal "baby Jesus" from the manger.
After the first service, we went into the gym for sweet treats and hot chocolate. We were a bit shocked at how many people decided to stay. On Christmas Eve, we tend to get a lot of people who don't normally come so it was a nice way to have some chance for outreach.
The second service was much more somber. It was a lovely communion service. The kids were with me in the nursery until Baby Bean fell asleep and then we went back in. I know that different churches do it different but in ours, the children are welcome at the table too. I can't think of much that is more powerful to me than taking communion with my family on Christmas Eve. Our ministers do such a wonderful job of making communion something that the children are involved in, not just tolerated at. This time, we did it by tearing off a piece of bread from a large loaf and then dipping it in the wine (well, grape juice, there's no wine in our church) and Pk just got a tiny piece (she didn't understand how crusty the edge would be). Our minister talked her through getting a better piece but in a way that didn't take away from the seriousness of the occasion. It was wonderful.
After church, we went home and got the kids into their Christmas jammies. I have always wanted to do a jammie tradition with my kids. They looked adorable. As you can see in the photo, we put out our carrots for the reindeer, milk and a "Happy Birthday, Jesus" cupcake for Santa (because we believe that Santa is giving gifts to help us remember the special gifts given at the first Christmas). By this point, Pk was really excited, but she was tired, too, so she went to sleep very quickly. Then, our work began - now I understand why my parents were always slow to rise on Christmas morning.
Baby Bean's jammies. Pretty cute, I would say!This was at church (I actually got them into their jammies between services in the vain hope that they would fall asleep in the car on the way home). There's nothing like a sleeping baby, especially when it's my own! All is calm...