Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Eve At Papa and Grammy's House

On Wednesday we got home from our trip to the cities at the start of what was supposed to be a huge snow storm.  The news was saying if you were not where you wanted to be by Wednesday night you probably wouldn't get there.  We decided to quick unpack and repack and head to Iowa for Christmas.  The kids were very excited to head to their cousins house with the hopes of getting snowed in even though they had no idea of what that kind of snow looked like. I have to say Eric and I were excited too and both commented on what fun memories for the kids getting to get snowed in at their cousins house.  The trip to my brothers was a little tense and the road conditions were less than ideal but we made it and then enjoyed playing cards with my brother and sister-in-law and watching the snow fly.

When we got to my brothers we parked our van safely in my parents extra garage and took my dad's 4 wheel drive Taho for a couple days.  My parents only live a couple miles from my brother's house and Eric's sister is only about 10 miles away.  We were hoping with all the snow we would still be able to make it from place to place for our Christmas celebrations. 

After Alexa was born and when we moved to South Dakota from Arizona we began to start our own family traditions for Christmas.  On Christmas Eve we have started the tradition of going to Christmas Eve service with the kids, having some type of yummy seafood dinner and then opening gifts.  This year since we went on our trip and weren't going to do other gifts I was looking forward to a nice quiet evening of church, dinner and playing games as a family.  Well the storm did stir things up a little and this year would be a little different!  

We waited to hear if Christmas Eve service was going to be canceled because of the storm.  My parents church was one of the only churches in town that had their service.  We piled in the 4 wheel drive vehicle and headed to church.  I was so glad we were able to go to the candle light service.  It was amazing to see God's power on display through the storm and yet sit in his presence at church and savor the sweet gift of the birth of his Son. 

After church we went back to my parents house for dinner.  Growing up we always had soup and carmel rolls on Christmas Eve and then would open gifts together.  It was fun to be at my parent's house and have the traditional Christmas Eve meal we always had growing up.  I think my parents enjoyed having us there too! 

Alexa thought Grammy's carmel rolls were the absolute best! 

Shane thought sitting at the big table was fun.  Usually when we are all there he has to sit at the little kids table.

Emma thought eating on Grammy's Christmas dishes was fun.  She thought is was especially neat that they got to drink out of the Christmas mugs!

It has been seven years since I sat by my parent's table on Christmas Eve! Sitting at my parent's table on Christmas Eve brought back so many great memories of our Christmas' growing up.  I am so thankful for the traditions they started and that they made spending time at Christmas with just my brothers and I a priority.  I am also thankful for the ways that they encourage Eric and I as parents and support us in starting our own family traditions.  They could ask us to come every Christmas Eve but they don't.  I know they would love to have us there but they also see the importance of starting our own family traditions.  They have supported us in starting our own traditions with our kids.  I hope someday my kids have special memories as I do of our family time on Christmas Eve.  I also hope I can learn from my parents and let go of our traditions as my kids and their families start their own. 


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