Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas Day 2007

Maya was up at the unearthly time of 4:30. We put her into bed with us, but she was a horrible bedmate, so Lyle took her back to her room. The night before, we'd charged the video camera so that we could film the kids coming into the living room on Christmas morning. Unfortunately, all four kids went downstairs without telling us at 6 AM!

This is what Maya found that Santa brought--a robe and a farm set. She also got lots of fun goodies in her stocking. The strawberry banana flavored "Lip Smacker" was a big hit!
Maya's gift from us was a Noah's Ark flannel board book. Abby got her a doll, Adam bought her a wooden train, and Madeline gave her a play cell phone. I think Maya really enjoyed her day.

Abby loves dolls of all kinds, but has a special place in her heart for porcelin dolls. She named these two Opal and Olive. In the red bag she got a Christmas music box. I'm not sure how many of you know this about Abby, but she's a girl who loves Showtunes, so she was thrilled with her "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" CD. The present we were most excited about is tied up with the red ribbon. For a little background, Abby is a HUGE fan of Riverdance. She's never been to the show, but she's watched our Riverdance video countless times. She has names for many key characters: "The Twisty Lady", "Bump Head", "Weird Instrument Guy", etc.
The other night Santa had a moment of pure inspiration. After hearing about Abby's obsession, he did some internet sleuthing and found that Riverdance was doing its farewell tour with a stop in Seattle in January! Three tickets were purchased and Abby's yelling on Christmas morning could be heard through the house, "I'm going to RIVERDANCE!!" Abby also got a doll from the movie Enchanted, a Webkinz from Madeline, a very special homemade present from Adam, and a bathtub set from Maya.

Madeline is problematic for Santa. Whenever she's asked about gift preferences, she always responds, "I'm pretty content." Being content is a beautiful thing, but it poses a problem for gift buyers! This year Santa brought Madeline a radio-controlled dragon fly, a hair straightener, a video about a baby panda, and a penguin Webkinz. Madeline seemed pleased. Of course, she was also pretty thrilled with Abby's Riverdance present, because she knew she was included!
Madeline got a special Mom and Dad present. We'd always told Madeline that she could get her ears pierced at age 12. Madeline has only 5 girls in her class and they are the sweetest group of friends. They all get along so well and one of the girls frequently makes matching jewelery for all of them. This sweet girl made matching Christmas earrings for all of them, but told me that she was still looking for a place to buy a clip-on earring kit because she didn't want Madeline to be left out. Sooo, it got us thinking. She's not too far from 12, and we REALLY needed a gift idea! We bought her 2 pairs of earrings and included a note saying that she could invite her friends for a Piercing Party! She wants to do it this Saturday. We'll definitely take pictures! Abby bought Madeline nail polish, Adam got her a balsa wood plane, and Maya gave her slipper socks.

Adam is also a bit tough for Santa! He got a Storm Launcher radio-controlled stunt plane, several Discovery Channel videos, and a speed-sensing baseball.
Adam was really itching to try out his plane, so he ventured out on the porch for some little runs. We were all impressed with its maneuverability. Sadly, he went out with it later in the day and it crash-landed in our blackberry bog. We've searched and searched (as the snow began to fall), but have yet to find it. We all felt badly for him.
Also, the speed-sensing baseball doesn't seem to work, so Adam was understandably a little disappointed. Thankfully he rallied and had fun watching some of his new videos and enjoyed our evening Scum tournament.
Adam also got a book from us on Claymation, guitar pics from Madeline, a Nerf gun from Abby, and a wooden car kit from Maya.

Here is Maya modeling her very own "wobe"! What's funny is that she didn't have quite the reaction we expected. As a two-year-old, there really aren't that many things that Maya feels are absolutes. Her knowledge base is so small that almost anything could be possible. However, when she does make a decision that something is a certain way, she becomes quite determined in that knowledge. It's almost like, "Look, I may not know much, but I do know THIS....", and she cannot be swayed. As odd as it sounds, one of those facts of life is that she cannot reach lightbulbs. One day when I stood on a chair to change lightbulbs, Maya was just so impressed. Lightbulbs were her topic of choice for weeks and she would tell anyone who would listen that she couldn't reach lightbulbs. She always would grunt and stretch out her arm, maybe even jump, just to demonstrate. "UGGGHHH! Oh, can't reach it!" The listeners would nod their heads and agree that her reaching a lightbulb seemed very unlikely indeed. Then out of the blue one day, Lyle picked her up, held her up over his head and said, "Maya, touch the lightbulb. You can reach it!" I don't think I've ever seen her so livid. She screamed, "No!! Dad, I CAN'T reach it!" She refused to touch that lightbulb. Lyle was challenging one of the few indisputable truths in her life. She can't reach lightbulbs! End of story.

Well, on Christmas morning we found that another Maya fact is that Mom and Dad have robes, and she does not. So, it took some coaxing to even get her to try on the robe and then she quickly took it off. I was feeling a little disappointed until this morning when she came into my room and I told her we'd go get breakfast after I put on my robe. Suddenly she got this excited look on her face and yelled, "I have wobe! I have wobe!" She tore down the hall to her room and put on her robe like it's something she's done every day of her life. I wish I'd had her on video as she strutted like a fluffy pink queen down to breakfast.

Adam spent countless hours working on Abby's present. Adam is a "project" kind of guy and we often feel tired just listening to his latest ideas. They always seem overly ambitious to say the least. This year he announced that he was making Abby a guitar. We groaned inwardly at this seemingly impossible project for a 13 year-old. To Adam's great credit, he did a fabulous job. He really is pretty amazing.

After all of the work that he put in, I was more than a little concerned that Abby wouldn't show an appropriate level of appreciation. I shouldn't have worried. Abby loved it and it was definitely the most impressive gift this Christmas.

Adam isn't the only one who gave homemade presents this year. Madeline had heard me mention that I'd always wanted a nativity set. Unbenkownst to us, she went to work creating this adorable scene using Lincoln logs, bits of fabric, paper, some wire and stuffing.
I love it. Madeline also made a beautiful Christmas memories scrapbook for her dad complete with a pop-out present. Abby made a very cute hand-print wreath wall hanging for her dad and an ornament for me. Such crafty kids!

Here is Abby with her chihuahua Webkinz from Madeline. She's named her Betsy. Don't you wish you could look so lovely right when you get out of bed in the morning? (Abby, not the chihuahua) Lyle had a special present for me under the tree. First of all, I should say that Lyle hates the mall. He especially hates the mall at Christmas time. So, I usually get unconventional presents, which is more than fine with me. This year I got a card saying that on Valentine's Day I need to be ready at 8:53 AM with an overnight bag and a spirit of adventure. The obvious clue was that a broomstick was optional. I knew we weren't going to a Quidditch match and I didn't think we were heading to some sort of cleaning convention, so I guessed that we're going to see the play Wicked. Lyle has confirmed that we're flying to Los Angeles on Valentine's Day morning and will see the play that night and fly back the next day. I'm SO excited! Merry Christmas to me! He got a brown sweater.

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