I've been fighting off a sore throat and a bit of a cold. Drinking on Monday certainly didn't help! I woke up Christmas Eve with my throat on fire, but I was not going to let that get in the way of anything. As is our Christmas tradition, we went to a late breakfast on Christmas Eve. I do love that our little family has a nice amount of Christmas traditions. If we do something once that the kids enjoy, they proclaim it a tradition. You can bet your sweet ass they'll remember the next year. Anyway, we usually go to a nice breakfast, but this year we went to IHOP. It was on the way to Leavenworth, and it's Cal's favorite restaurant (I know...wtf?), so it made sense this year. Anyway, I must say: we had a wonderful breakfast. All of the boys (hubby included) were just in such a great mood. It's the nicest breakfast I can remember having. We then made our way through the mountains. It was an icy, albeit beautiful drive. We don't have snow here, so it was so nice to see the trees draped in snow. The closer we got to our destination, the sunnier it got, though. We arrived in Leavenworth to find no snow :( Oh well, it is such a beautiful town! Both of the boys were a little sick after the drive. Cal gets pretty bad car sick, and Ryne's tummy didn't handle the drive well, either. When we first arrived, that was all we heard about. But one of the first stores we went to, had homemade soaps and lotions. Jackpot! Cal's favorite thing to do it smell things. He'll go into the bathroom to pee, and come out 45 mins later. He'll have been in there smelling everything from shampoo to deodorant. Anyway, he was in absolute heaven! I bought him a bar of soap, and you'd think it was the best thing in the world. He quickly proclaimed that he wanted to come to Leavenworth every Christmas Eve. Ryne was also soon singing the same tune. We just walked around and looked in a bunch on shops. That's not the sort of thing I usually love, but we were all having a wonderful time. We stopped into a brewery where Brian tried a new beer and I had a glass of wine. The boys had lemonade, and even that was exciting to them. Cal said it was the best he'd ever had! I wish they were so easily impressed with the day to day things :) Our plan was to stay late, so we could see the town all lit up, but the ice on the drive there, made us change our mind. We left around 4, but we made the most out of our afternoon. What a wonderful way to spend a day. I can't wait to go spend a weekend there, or something. There's so much to see.
When we got home, we put out a Christmas Eve spread. I'd made some dips earlier that morning (including Alaskan salmon dip), and we had a bunch of other stuff. It is true: the way to a man's heart, is through his stomach. Nothing makes those boys happier, than good food. It was great to get home early, as there was time to go to a church service. Caleb enjoys church, so the two of set off. On our way out, Brian said, "put in a good word for me." Oooohhh... I hate it when he says stuff like that. He always says that I'm his ticket to heaven. He's going to have his own beliefs, and I never try to change that, but if I could change anything about him...it would definitely be his belief system. Ryne doesn't care much for church, and I didn't make him go...but I think I'm going to start dragging him along on Sundays. Right or wrong, I'm pretty sure that's what I'm going to do. It's hard for me to identify with not wanting to go. I started going to church by myself when I was in the 3rd grade. I'd get myself ready every week, and I'd walk myself on down. It was my favorite thing. Anyway, the service was really, really nice. We also ran into a neighbor and her family. Her name is Amy, so I actually remember her name. That's a first! Maybe her and I will become friends. Maybe her name is a good omen. The service ended with us all holding candles, the lights turned off and singing Silent Night. Afterward, Cal exclaimed: that was beautiful! That made my whole holiday!
Christmas morning I was still not feeling well, but thankfully it's not the worst thing. We had a really nice morning. The kids, of course, had a fun time opening gifts. Ryne went crazy for an electric blanket. He cracks me up with his love of blankets, but he was so very happy! Cal freaked out when he opened a gift that included a pink Danica car. He held it up in the air, jumping up and down saying, "it's the Danica breast cancer awareness car!" OMG. We were laughing so hard. I need to try and figure out how to cut that part our of the Christmas video, so it's on a little snippit. Brian was really pleased with his gifts, too. I received some really nice things, too. Brian went over the budget we had. I don't know we even set one, because he always does. But his heart is in the right place. It was funny, though. He had told me that he knew what my Mom had gotten me. Mom got me several nice gifts, including a Kindle. I'd been really wanting one. I love to read, and I figure it's a much easier way than dragging book on vacation, etc. When I opened it, I saw Brian's face change, so I knew what was coming. Yep, Brian got me a Kindle Fire. He apparently forgot that Mom had gotten me one. He also bought me the book, The Veganist. I think that's so very sweet, but also hilarious that he bought me a kindle and a paper book. Ah, to be inside the brain of a man when they make those decisions. I just thought that was really funny. Men, we gotta love 'em! I do have to say, I married a good one. If I'm certain about anything in my life, I do know that!
For Christmas dinner, Brian bbq'd steaks for he and the boys. He also bbq'd us up some zucchini and yellow squash. We had Rhodes rolls, Caesar salad, and I made some scalloped potatoes. It was a recipe I hadn't tried, and I was super happy with how they turned out. The boys didn't care for them, but Brian and I really enjoyed them. Brian fell asleep early while watching t.v., and Ryno was playing Xbox live with his buddies from IL. I opened a nice bottle of red I'd bought in Leavenworth and Cal and I watched The Santa Clause 2. It was a really nice way to finish a beautiful holiday. I'm so glad I finally came around. I was also so very happy to receive some wonderful messages on Facebook and texts from friends. One, especially made my day. I felt very loved. I didn't send out very many Christmas cards. I had made come c.d.'s for a few friends, so I just sent them out with a card to them. The appreciation I received for such a little thing was so overwhelming. It really made my heart full.
I'm still not feeling the greatest, but I think I'm a little better today. Walt and Julie are coming over tonight to help extend the holiday. I'm really looking forward to spending some time with them.
I hope this day finds you all with your hearts filled with love and appreciation.
Have a wonderful day,