We had some really nice plans for Christmas this year but because of the sickness had to change/rearrange most of our schedule. Even though it wasn't as labor intensive as last year's Christmas, it was still meaningful and the boys enjoyed it very much.
At lunch on Christmas eve we had a birthday cake for Jesus and shared it with the Brown clan. That way Kathryn and Alex could get in on the celebration. This helped to establish our focus on the real meaning of Christmas and kicked off our celebration of Jesus' birth.
Christmas eve we were going to go caroling and give cookies to the neighbors on our street. I had prepared a Christmas card with a tract that had the plan of salvation in it to go with each plate. The boys helped me this year to bake 25 dozen cookies (this year we didn't have to put them in the freezer...they stayed frozen in a box on the porch!)We put chocolate almond biscotti, raisin filled, cream cheese cutouts, pecan tassies, pinwheels, peanut butter blossom cookies, and fudge on a pretty tray for each neighbor. Since the boys and Philip were not feeling well, we all went in the van for the delivery but no one sang and I rang all the doorbells. Unfortunately, only two people on our street were home and only one of them was a person we didn't know. We'd wanted to make contact with people on our street that we'd never met. So we went to other streets and did deliver all of the cookie trays we'd made. Lesson learned....we need to do it earlier before people get gone for the holidays.
We then came home and read the Christmas story. The boys then picked their gifts from the Gospel for Asia catalog. This year they bought Bibles, blankets, and rabbits. We pray they will be a blessing to those who receive them. The plan had been to sleep under the Christmas tree but I knew it would be better for the boys to sleep in their beds. Thankfully, they didn't remember and so we all got a good nights sleep....too good!
Because our home runs on a regular schedule it means that little people hardly ever sleep in. They're up no later than 7:15 so that we can eat breakfast together as a family. But evidently the busyness of the week and the sickness overruled (except Stephen...he was up by 8:00). Allan was the last one to get up and it was 9:50. Philip and I were sitting in the living room saying, "We can't believe we're waiting for our children to wake up Christmas morning!" I put Stephen down for his morning nap and we opened gifts while he slept.
Here are some pictures of our gift opening. The boys got an aquarium from Pappy and Grandma Slagenweit and then they each got an individual gift from them - Allan, a set of Lincoln logs and Daniel, a large Tonka truck.