Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Popping in to wish an official blog merry Christmas! We're still celebrating over here despite this Christmas being much more low key than years past. Being in a first trimester during Advent and Christmas changes things up quite a bit! Expectations were lowered and it's been a lot more hygge than partying this year. Puzzles, Lego, a few movies, and just enjoying some time off of school. It's good even though I've felt a bit pent up at times...the frigid single digit temperatures would likely have been an issue anyway. I *think* I might finally be on the upswing from the exhaustion and nausea and I'll be so so grateful if that's the case. I've especially felt the power of offering up sufferings this time around and tried to not waste it...there are some big intentions and prayers on my heart. Still, it's starting to get old fast and I hope to feel normal again soon. At least this time I have even more perspective that it is passing and that I won't feel like this forever even if I'm sorely tempted to think otherwise lately!

I've barely taken any pictures but here's just a few more memorable snippets from the last few weeks...

We were blessed to have all three older boys serve at the cathedral for Christmas Eve Mass!

That boy in the middle was SO. EXCITED. to get to wear his new cassock and surplice and serve!

This was the latest we've ever figured out Christmas gifts for the boys. I just had no ideas! I don't want stuff just for its own sake and I really try (and need) to limit our stuff. We ended up finally deciding on a "Twelve Months of Christmas" idea and gave them the gift of a fun experience or event as a family for each month of the year. As per the usual, I came up with the idea and Brian executed and went over the top ;) 

Each month was locked up and they had to take turns solving puzzles and codes to get into the next gift!

It took a looong time to get through them all and there were even tears at one point (emotions are extra high on Christmas morning, you know?) but I think they'll remember this for a long time.

And it'll be fun to have things to look forward to doing each month. Some of them are very simple (go sledding or eat at a restaurant) and some were bigger (go to the Rend Collective concert! and a Festival of Praise at our alma mater). 

We did get out a few days ago for our traditional ice cream dinner and to celebrate David's feast day. It was super fun to get out of the house and we found a new to us ice cream place that is amazing.

We also made candy houses for the first time! It's always been in the back of our minds to do but I've never been brave enough for the extra sugar and mess or wanted to spring for the extra candy ;)

Some year I'll make the traditional gingerbread, I think, but graham crackers work well, too, and are so much easier! They built the houses on Saturday night and then decorated them on Sunday to celebrate the feast of the Holy Family.

It went REALLY smoothly. It was surprisingly refreshing actually. No fights or even of those memories that you just need to just bottle up and keep forever.

Ben really wanted a tower.

Luke's cottage

David's church (The parish of Saint David the King)

Michael's country home

John Paul's rendition of Chartres Cathedral. 

Brian's log cabin

Our New Year's Eve consisted of a cocktail dinner for the boys, Rosary by the Christmas tree, games, normal bedtimes, ordering in for the husband and me, and more normal bedtimes :) I've never really been huge into celebrating NYE. I mean, I totally am up for a fun adult party if one comes up but I've never felt like I needed to make a big deal for the kids beyond a special dinner. Maybe it's because I have zero memories of NYE as a kid and the cost of keeping kids up until crazy hours makes it so not worth it to me? But I'm pretty sure they're totally fine with it. They can make up for it later if they want.

I hope you and yours are having a wonderful Christmas season. We're still off of lessons this week and will start back up after Epiphany. In the meantime, it looks like the near zero temps on the docket for the week will make for a lot more games, puzzles, blankets, and that hygge lyfe. 


  1. I love the 12 months of Christmas idea!! So creative. We've always made a gingerbread house with a kit but used graham crackers and clearanced candy this year for the first time and I'm kicking myself for not doing it before. It fosters more creativity!

  2. Just LOVE how Brian does these amazing ways to present gifts!
    and really taken with your gingerbread house idea, I'm a little like you re the lollies, and time. But love your time idea, thinking I could adopt this for New Year next year


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