Christmas Eve with the Schmidgall's
Every year the extended Schmidgall family gets together on Christmas eve to exchange gifts and have a light dinner. This year was our first experience with a child. It was pretty fun, despite the fact that Marissa did not get her afternoon nap and she was a little cranky by the time we started opening gifts. She ended up doing alright, but it was touch and go for a little while. We had a great time seeing family that we only see a few times a year. It never seems like there is enough time to get quality conversations in with everyone. Every year Dan and I leave saying we are glad that our extended family still takes the time and effort to continue to gather together.
Marissa's first present ever. She needed Dan to help her open it (she was pretty fussy before she got the gift :). The hat was made by cousin Emily...impressive, and it even matched with her outfit.
Her favorite gift were the blocks. Aunt Bev and Marilyn are so thoughtful. I read during college that children who play with blocks are smarter...she is starting early.
All gifts are toys, right?
Dan and I decided this year to offer our home to entertain the Tim Schacher family on Christmas day. We thought it would be easier for Papa (not to have to worry about cleaning, decorating, making the entire meal, etc.) and Marissa (actually going down for naps during the day). Also, the Schacher family loves to stay up late and watch Christmas movies, so we would have missed out on that part of the holiday tradition in order to get Marissa home and asleep at a decent hour. I love decorating and making sure everything is perfect, while Dan loves to entertain and make sure that everything under the sun is available for guests. We make quite the pair, but to me it becomes slightly overwhelming trying to keep everything perfect. At some point in the evening, I gave up and just relaxed and enjoyed Christmas. We had a great sit down dinner and were entertained by Marissa most of the time. She was in the high chair next to the food table when after a few minutes we realized she could reach the table. Of course it was too late and she had crammed mashed potatoes in her mouth. Then we opened gifts and got the traditional family pj's from "Santa" (something Dan's mom used to do). The evening ended around 2:00am after watching "The Elf" and "Christmas with the Cranks". What a great Christmas.