This was a big Christmas for us.
Which translates to this is a long post, you were warned.
It was the first Christmas where Riley really understood what was going on. It was the first one in our new home. Most importantly, it was our first Christmas as a family of four.
To put me over the top in terms of holiday bliss, Gammy, Gampy and Tata flew in to spend a blissful 5 days here with us. The only way it could have been better is if TG's family were with us as well (sadly our little house just can't accomodate that many people).
I have so many happy memories of Christmases growing up. My parents always went all out. I know we didn't get everything we asked for, but I'm sure we got more gifts than we deserved. I can even remember shopping late and scouring the shelves with my parents one year (after I had been let in on the secret) to find a Cabbage Patch doll that Tata really had her heart set on.
Then there's the decor. My mother is the decorating Queen. We have lost count of the number of Santas she owns, but it is in the 100s. She always goes full out and every inch of our house was absolutely as merry as it could be. She's done it for years and although we all lovingly tease her about it, the truth is that it makes our family so happy.
I have waited a long time to create those same happy memories for my own two children.
Riley racing down the stairs, absolutely overcome with glee when she saw the tree.
Riley got to open the first gift, with a little help from Cam and I.
For months, anytime we asked her what she wanted Santa to bring she said a mermaid tail. I was surprised she never wavered from that. She looks happy here, but I have to say that once she realized that it was only a costume and not a real tail she was a bit sad. It broke my heart just a bit.
My beautiful sister and Mom.
My darling babies in their matching jammies in front of the tree.
Cam's first gift of 2010 was this awesome toy my parents got him. The two cars go down the rampand into the wheel that spins them around before they shoot out of the finish line.
My parents aka Gampy and Gammy. When we picked them up from the airport they were both wearing Santa hats. Steelers for Gampy and Chiefs for Gammy. Riley loved it.
This is a very unflattering photo of me, as I had just stuffed a big bite of breakfast in my mouth. I almost deleted it, but this is how my mom and I spent a good part of our day. Side by side in our matching jammies in the kitchen.
No, she's not spoiled. Why do you ask?
Matching Jammies! It's been a family tradition for many years for our first present to be new matching jams. This year Tata and I searched until quite late at night on the 23rd for a suitable set, but it was Gammy to the rescue with these bad boys.
After Christmas dinner at my sister's house. A whole fam holiday shot is quite rare for us, but I love it!
Riley enjoyed her second round of gifts and was extremely excited to receive a talking Woody doll. She LOVES Toy Story right now.
I'll wrap this up with a photo of our little family in front of our tree on Christmas Day. We really were as happy as we seem.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas in your homes as well. Happy (belated) 2011!