We stayed up late on Christmas Eve playing cards with my family and wrapping presents, so we were able to get a couple pictures after we put all of our gifts under the tree and after Santa had come...very early on Christmas morning. I was so excited to get to bed so that Christmas morning would come and we could watch the kids open all of their gifts, but it was also nice to sit and look at things in the quiet of the night for a couple of minutes before running off to bed. Everything is just over in such a whirlwind on Christmas morning.
It was so fun to have both boys at ages where they enjoyed anticipating what was inside each gift, and that they could (usually) open them on their own. Here is Noah opening a tire case to hold his die cast cars.
This harmonica was a big hit!
This clip is of Lincoln opening a car (Tex)...and of Noah enjoying his harmonica. I thought it was so cute how he'd request for us to sing various songs while he would "accompany" us on his harmonica.
That Santa is such a thoughtful guy...since music has been a big thing around our house this last year, he must have thought sliding whistles would be perfect in the boys' stockings!
Lincoln was excited about anything Buzz. He thought these candies in his stocking were awesome.
Linc smiling about his miniature slinky dog.
Nicole (Noah's birthmother) sent Noah a really thoughtful package too. We waited to have him open it with everything else on Christmas morning, and he loved it! Thanks, Nicole - we love you! Here is Noah opening two books from that package:
Noah playing his harmonica (again) while Lincoln opens a book from mom & dad (us). I highly recommend it too (The Gruffalo) - it's a fun book.
Noah opening his lasso throwin' Woody.
I have to mention how sweet both boys were while opening presents. That may sound silly, but I worried a little bit about it being too much stuff & the boys getting greedy or fighting over each others toys...it ended up being just the opposite. They got excited about each other's gifts, and used their pleases & thank yous the whole time. I was a proud mama! I mean, just look at that sweet face...
Lincoln playing with his karate chop action Buzz...
I wish that I could remember what it was that they were opening here...Noah was excited and jumping up & down...
I just have to mention - I ended up getting these one piece matching pajamas for the boys (obviously)...but it was really weird that I ended up needing to buy them in the same size (3T). You can really see how close the boys are in size in this picture.
Lincoln opening his Buzz Lightyear ornament...
It's not very often that you get to open a gift that's taller than you are!
Noah wearing his "hard Buzz Lightyear wings" (the only thing he asked for all season), and his Handy Manny tool set that he loves.
Once all of the present opening was done, we got dressed and headed up to my parents' house. Mark's parents ended up going out of town for Christmas, so we were unfortunately unable to see them...but we had a great time with my family, and we got to see Emily for a little bit too! Noah gets a tiny bit shy around Emily. He used to call her princess Emily (I think because she's pretty), and he still acts a little bit "aw shucks" around her.
Lincoln and Emily.
Perhaps the main attraction of our visit to my parents was the phone call from my brother Josh (who is on his mission). We hadn't talked to him for 5 months, so it was great to hear his voice! Here are my parents talking to Joshy.
Noah chatting it up with Uncle Josh.
Lincoln saying hello from under the kitchen table (and behind his binky).
Me talking to my baby-est brother!
And, of course, Emily getting to talk to Josh!
Mark pulling his cheesy "ta-da" face while whipping up crepes for our brunch. A huge thanks to our good friends (The Rhodenizers) for introducing us to the idea. We used to enjoy crepes with them at their apartment in Des Moines, and after hearing that they were doing crepes on Christmas morning we decided to copy them. They turned out delicious, and were surprisingly filling too!
Here's Noah after enjoying one with Strawberries, Nutella, and a bit of whipped cream!
Lincoln preferred to eat his bananas, strawberries, and crepe each separately.
My mom & brother Matt enjoying theirs...
And, if the day hadn't been perfect enough...after eating, both boys went down for naps and Mark and I even crashed on the couch! My mom snapped this picture (which I found on my camera later), and it made me giggle since we have several just like it from back when Mark & I were dating. It was so nice to just be able to relax together by their tree and drift off to sleep for a while.
Next it was off to my mom's parents house! We were able to put on one of the boys' new movies (UP) and play cards while they watched the film. What a nice ending to the day. Here are the boys rough housing by their Great-Grandpa Paul...
...and with their Great-Grandma Shirlene.
So, Noah started doing that little Russian dance where they say "hey!" (from Pinocchio maybe?) and my grandpa would act like it scared him...Noah about fell to pieces with laughter. The routine quickly shortened to just the "hey!" part and Lincoln joined in. Finally I thought to grab my camera. Here's a quick 25 second clip of the mania:
A quick shot of the boys with my parents. Lincoln did not want to be held (as is evident), and Noah insisted that the picture would be "really cute" if he put his finger in his mouth:
We had such an enjoyable Christmas. I want to wrap up this post with one of the highlights of that day for me. After present opening was behind us, and we were enjoying our crepe brunch with my family, Noah dreamily said, "I sure didn't know that this was going to be such a lovely day!" Me either, buddy. (Oooh, couldn't you just eat him up?!) He was really surprised when everyone made a fuss over him saying that too. So he made mental note of that, and has managed to incorporate it into conversations several times since then. I love that kid.