December 26, 2020

happiest of Christmas

What we needed more than anything this Christmas was to slow down and enjoy each other. This time and these moments are the most important to me right now. I want to be present with the ones I love the most.

It has taken months of hard work and focus on myself and my Heavenly Father and my family and my values, but I deem it a Christmas miracle for me to feel as good as I feel today. I feel like I went through hell and back these last two years. To be here and to feel such peace right now brings me such joy. It teaches me  that no matter the pain or the brokenness, there is always hope. Because of my Savior and the ways he helps us learn—little by little, step by step, grace by grace—I feel both hope and joy again. 

And that’s what I wanted. I wanted to be content and happy and full of love and appreciation for my family again. I think we found it this Christmas.

We put phones away for the day (my teens loved that). We exchanged gifts, we enjoyed traditions, and we spent quality time with each other. We found peace.

Happy highlights of the holiday:
-Layla’s prep and planning for all her performances in the Untalent show 
-Out families costumes and performance of grandma got run over by a reindeer
-Perry’s dance in the untalent show and his excitement and pride
-Layla’s jaw drop when she saw some of her gifts 
-Cooking our big breakfast with everyone’s help 
-Layla’s Christmas notes to everyone 
-gift exchange
-preparing lunch platters together
-watching Perry play with his toys
-Brinna wearing her new dress ups 
-Brinna being engrossed in reading her new books
-watching kids play with things together, like baby yoda legos
-surprising my mom with a gift from my dad
-my dad surprising us by looking at his gifts after the gift exchange and opening Perry’s present to him
-FaceTiming a sister and favorite things gift exchange with all my sisters
-a family walk with Kacin by my side most of the time
-Kyler’s big hug to me at the end of the day
-playing costume party assassins, including Perry and my parents, with everyone
-looking through the telescope at the planets and moon
-sitting outside with Eric in the afternoon and reading a good book together while Brinn played around us (and took our picture!)

(all of these phone pictures are so blurry today)

We got the kids to bed on Christmas Eve.

Stockings were laid out and sometime during the night, Santa left some gifts. (the big L puffy is one that Layla already had and just had left to claim her spot).

Santa delivered two little chicks to a little 9 year old girl who has been talking about them nonstop. 
I'm sure Santa had a fun time trying to hide them for almost a week (thank you, Kacin, for your bathroom).

Layla woke us up every hour beginning at 2am. I was ready to cancel christmas after so little sleep! But we gathered at 7am on our big bed. Perry woke up by 7:30am so we could all sit at the top of the stairs toegther.

Eric showed us a short video of the nativity.

Then we headed downstairs oldest to youngest this year to see what Santa brought.


Her jaw was dropped and her hands covered her mouth in excitement for her chicks.This joy makes christmas so worth it!

Give this girl and book and she is happy as can be.

I think he liked his gifts, too.

Never a straight face.

After we saw what Santa brought, we made a big breakfast together.

When our bellies were full, we exchanged gifts with eachother.

Get ready for hug fest!  I love seeing the excitement and the love from giving. 

After the exchange, we spent the rest of the day playing with new toys, reading books, building legos, watching a christmas movie, walking through the neighborhood, and eating food.

Happy christmas!