Our babies opened some presents.
George's favorite thing was probably his Ninjago Lego set, and Pearl's was her stroller. It was so much fun to watch her toddle in and out of the room pushing it.
A close second for George was his robe; he had been asking for one like his dad's for months. I love that you can see Pearl cuddling her new baby doll in this photo as well.
The kids finished opening their presents and then I realized we had forgotten to do stockings- a true tradition travesty as those are always first. We emptied them anyway, and it was actually sort of fun for George to think he was done opening presents and then have a few more in his stocking.
Christmas morning faces.
I was pretty excited about the present that I got for John. It was a box full of books about insects. A couple of them were more fieldwork reference books, but a couple of them were these beautiful insects as artwork books that I knew he would love. The beetles were important because that is the insect he is hoping to study for much of his PhD. He was totally surprised (I had given him some wacky, misleading clues :)) and happy.
We got ready and went to church, which I think should be an annual part of Christmas. It was so lovely to spend a portion of our morning thinking so purposefully about why we celebrate Christmas. John was one of the speakers in our meeting, and I loved his words so much. My family came to church with us so they could hear John (and also so we could all have our Christmas morning stuff together-- their church would've been at 11:00 right in the middle of our festivities). Here are Madeline, Rachel, and George outside of our chapel after the meeting, and then a picture of our little family as well. I knew I wanted a picture of us in front of our church-- this building (and all of the people associated with it) has been such an enormous part of the happiness and love we've found in our neighborhood here. I've had the blessing of serving in the Relief Society presidency here for 3 1/2 years now, and John has been in the bishopric for 2 years and the experiences and opportunities that we've had (individually and as a family) because of our callings are things that I hope I'll always remember.
After church we got our jammies back on (really) and went up to my parents' house for a second "Christmas Morning."
Pearl immediately found her shopping cart from the night before, slapped a purse around her shoulder, and was off. This was the year of grown-up gifts in little people sizes so she could do it "all by self", which is of extreme importance to that independent little friend.
Another highlight for Pearl was the box of giant bugs that she received. Heaven. I cannot believe how much she loves bugs. She goes through them labeling and categorizing, "Praying Mantis. Beetle. Lady Bug. Scorpion. Spider."
Oooo, a Rhinoceros Beetle! Thrilling! Look at her face :).
Here's a good look at her with some of her creatures. I seriously love this about her.
George got an Angry Bird and Pearl sobbed when he wouldn't give it to her. So unfair.
She also sobbed (SOBBED) when she discovered that the doll that my mom gave her made actual crying sounds when she squeezed it. The first two sounds are happy-- laughing and then saying, "Mama." She was okay with those-- excited even.
But the next two sounds were traumatic. The baby whimpers and then full-on cries. She could not handle it.
Oh, she looks so heartbroken in that last picture! She hastily handed the baby to me and cried, "Take it away! Take it away!" So sad. And a tiny bit funny :).
The remainder of the day consisted of playing games,
trying out new sleeping bags,
wearing matching pajamas,
and driving new cars.
(Pearl started out interested in a ride, but quickly discovered that she was not a fan of her brother's crazy driving.)
I love this grin. He was having so much fun.
See ya later!
We didn't spend time on Christmas Day with John's family because we all left to spend the week together at the beach that night. Those posts are coming next. Probably.