Dylan suffers from an overabundance of feminine attention!
We also invited our good friend Gwen to join us for dinner and an evening of Christmas traditions. Gwen came bearing gifts, and we had a good time opening them together.
Sarah immediately put her new nail care kit to use. She loves painting her nails, and usually paints Gwen's, too, when she comes to visit. For Gwen, we had a plate of homemade sugar cookies (a la Ed) and a set of cranberry-scented candles.
Gwen gave me this book called Blessed are Ye by Chris Huston. It's so good, I'd read almost the entire book by the end of Christmas Day. She also gave me a beautiful friendship magnet for my fridge and a small, beaded Christmas tree of gold wire. I love them!
When I told Ed he looked "hot" with facial hair in some photos taken a few years ago, he decided to treat me to a beard for as long as he can stand it (probably not much longer, but I'm enjoying it as long as it lasts!). So Gwen gave him a beard trimmer!
A family in our ward blessed us with a nightly, anonymous gift for the Twelve Days of Christmas. The first night they gave us a poster board with a stable sketched on it, and then each night dropped off a different figure to place on the board, as well as a Christmas story and a goodie of some kind. On Christmas Eve they revealed themselves and came caroling when they delivered the Baby Jesus figure, completing the nativity. It was fun to listen for their knock each night, then wait just long enough for them to escape before opening the door.
The rest of our gifts were jumbled beneath the tree, ready for Christmas morning, so we got out the video camera and filmed the kids hanging their stockings on the fireplace, as we do every year. This year we added a new element to the annual filming: Ed and Mom kissing by the Christmas tree!
Two new stockings joined the family this year. After everyone was in bed, Santa stopped by to fill the stockings with goodies! Meanwhile, we slept on, dreaming of good things to come...