It is now January first and I'm back to work tomorrow. I don't really feel ready for that, but what can you do? The brewery generally shuts down between Christmas and New Year's so we moved all the stats to the week between. That way we got all the time off and only needed to use one holiday day. But I guess it will be good to get back into the routine of things - work, school, daycare.
The holidays began with a stomach flu in the house - always fun. It seems that this year has been a lot worse than ever before for stomach bugs (in our house anyway). We've been pretty lucky up until now. I guess it's probably the little germ magnets bringing it home.
We went to our church's Christmas Eve candlelight service on the evening of the 24th. I think next year will be better is all I have to say about that. Well, it wasn't that bad. The older two were fine (and didn't have any incidents with hot wax this year) but CeCe cannot sit still and quiet for an hour. So I spent much of the time in the foyer with her walking around. She was happy enough as long as she didn't have to sit still. And as we were pacing the foyer and the hallways of the church, we encountered several kids in various stages of meltdowns and tantrums. In that fleeting moment, I realized that maybe we had pretty good kids. We were already a couple of days into holidays and there had been many instances of patience being tried, but right then, in that light, they looked pretty good.
We came home from church and opened our gifts that night. It has become our custom to give the girls a new pair of pajamas every Christmas, so that is the first present they open, then they put them on, and then we carry on with the festivities. They all had a blast and CeCe really got into it this year as well. It was a late night and they were all ready for bed.
After lunch on Christmas day, we set out for Julie's parents' place. We got there in time for the turkey supper with all the trimmings. The girls then got round two of opening presents and had another late night. You'd think that after a few late nights that maybe, just maybe, there would be a little sleeping in. By sleeping in, all I mean is sleeping past 7:00. Nope. Every morning was the same. They lay in bed in their room and then as soon as the clock hits seven, they're out. "Daddy! It's seven o'clock!"
Surprisingly, they had a bit more snow down south than we do here, so we got to partake in the second annual toboggan/sled day in the hills. Julie's Dad brought some wood (and the girls) out in the backhoe and made a fire. Julie's brother and his wife were there and Julie's Mom came out too. Julie's Dad also brought out a sled to pull behind the quad this year that kind of looks like Santa's sled. There were a lot of rides in that before we made it out to the hills. The afternoon was spent trudging up the hill and flying down it. It was a lot of fun, and everyone was still able to walk the next day. The girls had a lot of fun too, and did remarkably well climbing up that hill. Every once in a while they would try to hitch a ride on the toboggan, but that wasn't happening. It was hard enough just walking up there after a while. By the end of the afternoon, Ginny made it half way up and then plunked herself down and just sat there eating snow. I've tried in the past to not get them to eat snow, but they're kids and this was Christmas. What the heck. Every time we passed her on the way up, we asked her if she wanted to go again. "No, I'm just eating snow and having a snack," was her answer. Alrighty then. For my very last run, I took CeCe with me. She had been content to sit with Poppa in the backhoe and watch everyone up until then. I waited to the end to take her just in case she liked it. There's no way I was going to carry her up the hill every time. I'm not quite sure if she liked it or not. She was pretty quiet when we hit the bottom - not quite sure if she should laugh or cry, shit or puke. It was time to head home. I'm sure next year she'll be in there like a dirty shirt. There was talk of bringing out some wieners and marshmallows next year too - looks like it could be evolving into quite the fun annual tradition.
We came back to Saskatoon on the 28th and just hung out for a few days. The girls played with their new stuff and continued staying up late and not sleeping in. Maybe that's the one thing to look forward to in the teenage years.
My parents came over and spent New Year's with us and the kids got round three of Christmas. We actually stayed up until midnight this year too. We had a nice spread of appetizers for supper and snacks and watched the movie 'Bridesmaids' after the kids went to bed. Funny, funny movie. The movie ended at about ten to twelve, so we watched the taped delay version of the Niagara Falls New Year's celebration, kissed and went to bed.
So that's it for 2011. It's been a good year - looking back a lot of stuff has happened. Here's hoping 2012 is even better. (Except for the fact that I will turn 40.) Later.