The Gifts - From Us to Them

I think I've realized that one of my love languages, at least with my children, is gifts.  I love to give them something special at Christmas and for their birthdays.  I love knowing them and figuring out what is that gift that will speak to their heart and just be that perfect unique gift for them.  I feel like truly knowing someone results in that gift that is such a sign of love and it's not even necessarily the gift itself that means so much but the knowing of the person well enough to pick that gift.  

I also love chronicling what we've given them each year.  I find it so helpful for future reference and it just makes me happy to see those faces!  Anyway.  All of this is my really long way of saying this post might not be interesting or useful to anyone but me.

This year I decided months ago that Michael, David, and Luke would be getting play vestments.  They love to play Mass and they've each been talking about how they'd like to be a priest when they're older.  David sometimes opts for deacon.  I toyed with the idea of making them myself and I am so glad I didn't!  Last year's Lord of the Rings costumes (and the two days before Christmas tears that were shed over them) were enough sewing for me for a while.  It was such a relief to order these from Faithful Findz and have them beautifully and prayerfully made by someone who actually knew what they were doing.

Father Michael

And Deacon David

Jean was wonderful and made David special deacon wear!

They kept them on almost all morning!

Luke wasn't in the mood for trying his on but you can see John Paul holding it here.  If we had time I was going to have Brian try to make a little tabernacle to hold all their Mass supplies since they're just kept in a basket right now.  But we had to pass on that as Brian's been pretty busy with work lately.

I also knew John Paul's gift months ago and had it ordered in October.

Realizing what it is...I think he was kinda excited ;)

We've got big plans to make this winter!  I ordered the suit from here.  He then decided he had to wear the suit to the party at the grandparents' later!

One of our little traditions is that I get each of the boys and Brian a special ornament that represents something about them from that year.  I LOVE doing this and am so glad I started it.  I love that they'll have a little cache of memories to take with them when they leave our home someday and that they'll know, at least a little bit, how much they were loved.

The Luke got a train.

David was tougher this year but in the tend I decided to make an ornament of The Last Judgement painting because he was so enthralled with studying Michaelangelo and going to the Sistine Chapel on our trip.  This was the painting he loved most.  I thankfully had a postcard I had happened to buy when we were there.  I cut it to a square, modpodged it to a piece of plywood, and added a ribbon.

Michael got a St. Peter's replica in commemoration of his First Communion.

And John Paul got an altar server cross.  I just changed this pendant into an ornament by adding a ribbon.

I got Brian an ornament to commemorate the marathon.  It's personalized with his name, date, and time.  When I looked back on the post I wrote that day to double check his time, I cried all over again.

We normally just do one bigger gift for each boy but I really wanted to get a couple of them something else specific so I decided to get them each one extra this year.

Luke got a homemade spool sorting toy thingy.

I'm glad he actually really likes it.  At one point the spools became projectiles which was expected but a few times he's actually used it for...sorting!

Because every five year old wants a Last Judgement puzzle, right?  Funny enough, they don't make this in a child size so we're going to have to do this one together :)

Michael with the long-awaited camouflage watch.

And John Paul with the microscope.  He was wearing his suit and using the microscope all looked like he was some biohazard research scientist or something.  I asked around on a few homeschooling boards and this microscope came highly recommended as one at a reasonable price that worked well and was of good quality.

And Brian with the annual photo calendar so we can stare at him at work all day long.

Later that morning, Michael and David treated us to Christmas Mass.

In case you didn't see my share on Facebook, Deacon David was even able to proclaim the Gospel ;)

And this was this morning.  I think they sort of like them :)


  1. I like being able to experience your Christmas morning. Great presents and pictures.

  2. Mary this is all so beautiful in so many ways. Merry Christmas.

  3. I cross stitch ornaments each year for my girls. I also try to personalize them particular to the year. I love each year when they hang them up and say, "remember this one?" So cute. Those vestments look awesome.

    1. Yes! They get so excited when they unwrap them to put them on the tree remembering them all! I love it! That's pretty awesome that you cross-stitch them all yourself...most of mine come from Ebay or the store :) Thinking about and praying for you still <3

  4. What beautiful vestments. The cutest clergy I've ever seen!!!

  5. gaaaaah, baahaaa, sniff, sniff....why, why does my computer delete my comments? why? blah, i just typed up a whole bunch of questions for you to answer and they are gone. all gone! i hate you samsung!

  6. do over, and i swear if this doesn't publish, i am going a box of brownies. now, seeing as my life depends upon you answering these very important questions, here goes:
    1) how in the world did david remember all that!?! i'am thoroughly impressed!
    2) will you be my mom?
    3) nice vestments + play clothes = locked toy chest? how are you going to keep those babies looking nice?
    4) i want to see the calendar pics!
    5) what did brian get you?
    6) are you opening a beehive?
    7) how does your place settings and children stay so neat during dinner!?!
    8) i am copying this in case the chromebook devours it.
    9) i am writing comments while mike is cleaning the kitchen. i told him i' am folding laundry. tmi?

    1. Ha! Okay:
      1. He's awesome. And an auditory learner. We've been going over it most mornings with the older two and he catches on crazy quick.
      2. No. Unless you agree to cook for us. Then yes.
      3. Brian put them on hangers and I think we're going to keep them in their closet when not being used.
      4. Will do.
      5. Slippers and he said he ordered me a fancy phone (!!)
      6. Planning on having two hives come spring because crazy.
      7. That was before we had even prayed :)
      8. Smart girl
      9. My lips are sealed.

  7. Love this so much and love the idea of personalized ornaments for each year! I may have to backtrack and get that started in our home. It really sounds so special! This year the boys got so. many. gifts. from the grandparents. We stuck to books that we know they'll enjoy. Now that they are getting older, seeing this post is helpful for me to start thinking about next year. Gift giving isn't necessarily my love language, so this helps so much!


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