First up was Carolyn. She noticed the ribbon strewn all down the hallway and she peeked her head in to the living room, only to see that the stockings were full and there were gifts spilling out from beneath the tree. She hustled in to our bedroom and whispered in to my ear, "MOM! SANTA CAME and he took my shoe and potato!!"
Ten minutes later, Elizabeth was up.
Followed by William and Henry.
For as long as we've been married, our Christmas tradition is that Charlie and I will have breakfast and slowly, open our stockings. We try to extend the gift exchange experience for as long as possible, so that if we pace ourselves appropriately, we're still opening presents at noon. Add children to the equation and within a matter of minutes, they had every single present under the tree opened.
They were like a gift opening MACHINE.
All told, they received:
A Harry Potter costume. (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
(Note the curly hair on Ruthie?)
(Note the curly hair on Carolyn?)
Although he received a cool Imaginext castle and race car track that was rated for 8+ but his father swore he'd love, Henry's favorite gift was a McFinn matchbox car that hasn't left his grasp since Sunday morning.
Charlie was correct about the boys loving that race car track. Especially the BIGGEST boy in the house. He's been reliving his childhood ("I had one of these when I was eight and it was so incredibly AWESOME!") and keeps asking me, "Wanna race?"
There was also a karaoke machine...
And bicycles that were way too big for the children (but looked so much smaller in the store?) which were exchanged.
Santa, that trickster, even brought out some of the toys that he'd delivered in years past that we haven't been playing with. Exhibit A: our marble run. There has been a renewed interest in this toy that I never could have expected. As such, Santa is thinking that he might make a tradition out of re-introducing things in to circulation.
This was MY favorite present.
And …. this was second.
After my Christmas gift last year, Charlie has most definitely redeemed himself.
I've been sleeping with the 278-page manual beneath my pillow in hope that I'll absorb the contents through some kind of osmotic process. Thus far the only thing I've figured out how to do is attach the neck strap.