A late start

Christmas morning we got a bit of a late start.  You'd think with five kids under the age of six in the house that all the gifts would be open and all the stockings dumped out by seven.  Or even eight.  Or nine for that matter.

Nope.  Not at our (Mama's) house.  We (my sister, her hubby, Ian and I) are just not early risers.  And thankfully, neither are our kids...

The earliest one up was Pierson ~ the second time, he did wake up around five or so to check on Santa's cookie plate, but my sister got him back to bed ~ around 8:45.  The rest of the crew all was up sometime between 9 and 9:30.  Except for my sleepy headed niece.  We finally went in after her 10:11.

she wasn't exactly thrilled about her wake up call
Yes, eleven minutes after TEN.  What's our secret for kids sleeping so late on Christmas morning?  Well, they didn't exactly get to bed early.  Several reasons behind that.  One may have something to do with chocolate raging through veins...

this photo may or may not have been snapped at 11:24pm
Judge if you must.  But Caleb is no fool and he knows the best part of a fondue meal when he sees it.  And with it being Christmas and all, I didn't have the heart to take the spoon away from him during clean up time.

Sleeping in late may also have had something to do with reading not one, but two Christmas stories.  First this version of Twas the Night Before Christmas.  Because tradition is tradition.  And then Memories of the Manger.  Because it is a wonderful retelling of the nativity.  And we wanted to end the night with the expectation of the coming of Jesus.

Oh, and the first story was being read at 12:17am.  (My sister tried to pass it off as 11:45pm, but I checked the details of the photo...)

After we gave sweet Maylin a little time to fully wake up, excitement prevailed.  First there was the line up.

waiting to be allowed out of the bedroom to see what Santa brought
And then they were set free!

only see four?  don't miss my boy's arm off to the left.  he was excited!
Santa left everyone a movie.  My crew got Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue (DQ), Barbie: A Fashion Fairytale (Ky) and Cars Toon: Mater's Tall Tales (Caleb).  How to Train Your Dragon (Pierson) and a Strawberry Shortcake DVD (Maylin) rounded out the cache.

there was just a little excitement in the air
Santa also brought the M kids a coloring rolls and four new games to help pass the long winter afternoons.

zingo 1-2-3, pretty pretty princess sleeping beauty, uno moo, and the super why? ABC letter game have all been popular at our house.  uno moo may edge the others out, but we've played ~ and enjoyed ~ all of them so far.
Once the shrieks of excitement over their movies died down, we avoided watching five new DVD's with the lure of opening gifts from grandmas and aunts/uncles.  They were so patient as they waited for everyone else to get their first round gifts.

okay, well most of them were all smiles with patience
Still trying to locate a few...

ky checks to be sure she isn't the only one without a present...
All gifts finally located.  Now GO!

some open faster than others
And it's a...

A few highlights from the morning's gifts.

Magnetic princess dolls for Ky

paper dolls have come a long way!  but her favorite part is a journal to fill in that goes with the stories of the princesses ~ a nice activity for she and i to do together when she wakes up from rest time.

Another engine to zoom around the train table!

you may not be able to see his face, but TRUST me, he's very excited about james!
Silvermist the water fairy.

there are a lot of fairies flying around our house these days and dq is lovin' it!

The rest of the day was spent checking out stockings,

some people reach in and take out one item at a time, others...are more direct
playing new games,

it was all fun and games until they would land on a spot that made them put a piece of their jewelry back into the box ~ we're working on sportsmanship...
exploring with cousin Pierson (who was sporting his new explorer backpack)

pierson is WAY cooler than diego or dora!
doing...well...I don't know what,

give my girls a pair of sneakers and they could totally take julia's role in runaway bride
honing civil engineering skills,

maylin's marble maze set was quite popular ~ LOTS of little hands trying to run the show
enjoying Christmas dinner,

some still in pajamas...
and in the end, curling up and reflecting on the joys of the day.

it's a dog's life on christmas.
We may have had a late start for Darcy, Pierson, and Maylin's first forever family Christmas, but we made up for it with lots of smiles, yummy treats, and basking in the love of family.  Little did we all know that another exciting surprise was coming that night...


Cindy M said...

BEAT YA! While my crew finally drug themselves out of bed around 10 was Mommy they couldn't drag out of bed until 10:30. We didn't open gifts until after 11 am!! That is the absolute latest ever! You know being a family of late risers is part of why I love you so much, right?

Oh, and no guilt here...we are ALWAYS up WAY late on Christmas, then Christmas at Grandma's, reindeer dusting, cookies out for Santa, the reading of both books you mentioned (although we used a different nativity book, but I'll check that one out)...

Looks like you all had a wonderful PERFECT Christmas day! I recognize Pretty Pretty Princess! It's so sad when Daddy or Alex or Mickey cry when they lose a jewel! :)

Laurie said...

Hmmm, what is the other exciting surprise??? Way to leave us hanging! I cannot believe you were able to sleep in that late- LUCKY YOU! I was thrilled the kids made it to 7:00! :) GREAT pictures- thanks for sharing!

Nancy said...

What an awesome day! I enjoyed all the photos documenting the fun family day. Can't wait to hear about the surprise!

Jenn said...

I gotta know the surprise...I gotta know!!!! Just leave us hanging why don'tcha'!! all the pics...especially the ones of the princesses/brides?

Heather said...

That looks like SO MUCH FUN! So cool to see all the kids together and having a blast. What great memories for all of you!

Team Baus said...

What a fun post! Made me want to be there in my pjs. We love you guys.
However, you're killing me with the suspense. I will be blog stalking tomorrow! Eh-hem. :>)

Laine said...

I love seeing these awesome snapshots of Christmas with your family! That is so special that they got to share it with their cousins! I know your mom was beside herself with joy!

You are motivating me to get my Christmas pics into a post....

Traci said...

Oh how I love Christmas with all of the family! It was such a great celebration of Jesus' birthday. It was so fun to see Darcy, Pierson and Maylin's first Christmas!

Grandma Shultz said...

What a glorious celebration of Jesus' birthday. The children all understood why we were celebrating which made it extra special. My heart was full!