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This Christmas…

::: instead of being embarrassed while my daughter giggled like a demon at the top of her lungs during “Silent Night” at the Christmas Eve service, I counted my blessings that we were able to take her to church at all and that she {quite obviously} enjoyed it.  My husband did take her out during the last verse as the laughter reached epic proportions… hers, ours, and the guys behind us.  Probably not the pastors.

a photo of her demon laugh… the drool, thanks to teething, is icing on the cake

::: after standing in line for 45 minutes to see Santa on Christmas Eve day, I finally left the non-moving line.  This was as close as we ever got to him:

… which suited Noodle just fine, as she enjoyed just watching all the other kids run around.  Maybe next year we’ll meet the old guy in red…

::: Santa was wayyyyyyyyyyyy too good to me.  Among the treats I got was this:

obviously, I have a lot to learn about using it. 

::: Noodle was so excited about her new toy she didn’t wait until we could take it out of the box to hug and kiss her new pal.  Her genuine love for all things melts my heart every single day.  If you’ve been at the receiving end of one of her hugs or kisses, you understand.

::: even though I cooked a big Christmas dinner, I didn’t stress out even once.  Making a gigantic to-do list and timetable helped:

but mostly remembering why we were all getting together was what truly kept me happy:

::: we enjoyed a taste of summer in the middle of winter with my mother-in-law’s festive fruit salad.  I love this stuff!

:::  watching my daughter, who has feeding issues due to severe reflux, eating with us on Christmas filled us with joy.  I didn’t even mind the berry stains on her Christmas dress.

::: I realized that thanks to Santa, I now have TWO kitchens to keep clean.

::: I didn’t change out of my jammies until 1:00, when my relatives came for the big meal.  It was heavenly.  {Sorry, no photo of that one at 18 weeks pregnant.  Or anytime, for your sake.}

::: when I stepped outside to take a a few quick photos of the snow {and the red berries hidden on this bush}, nearby church bells starting ringing “Silent Night”.  Magical.  

::: I got one photo of Noodle that wasn’t a blur.  I’m thrilled I got one!

::: in lieu of a big gift for my husband, I sent him on a treasure hunt around the house in search of hand-picked craft beers.  Let’s just say it’s been the gift that’s been most used thus far.  😉

:::  my husband did most of the dishes after the big meal.  It took an hour.  I love him.

:::  I finished a whole book in a day and a half.  And not a how-to-sleep book or a how-to-feed book or a children’s book.  If you need a good read, pick up The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society.  It was wonderful.  I didn’t get a photo because I barely put it down.  Also, I now think I need to visit the English Channel Islands.  Maybe next year.

::: we had so, so much to celebrate this year.  We are still tube free, have a baby on the way, and in February I will be an aunt!  I have the very best friends and family I could ever hope for, and they are currently all healthy and happy.  I hope your Christmas was a wonderful one.  Happy Holidays from my family to yours!

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