Once again our house was filled with some of our extended family members. This tradition started at my house when Barbara had gotten divorced and she still had several of her kids living at home and while Barry's kids were still at home. Of course my girls were still at home also. It was hard to always take Christmas to Idaho and join in the festivities at my parents house so we thought it would be fun to get together here. Sandra's family always go to the Cannon's home for Christmas Eve, David is in San Diego and Betsy and Keith are in Idaho so they were usually with my parents. It has really evolved over the years as all of our children have left our homes and are on their own, yet many of them still love to come back with their children for this tradition. Needless to say, we are quite cramped in my living room and my windows always fog over from all the body heat inside my house, but we still fit everyone that wants to come. I love that everyone brings good food to share and we spend the evening enjoying each other's company. This year Barry's sister, Pennie and her children, came to celebrate with us. We always eat, sometimes play the dice game, Barry reads a Christmas story to the kids, and John reads the Christmas story from the Bible with some carols added (played by Holly). The younger kids love to pull all the toys out in the basement and play down there until we call them up for the stories and games. I am so glad that they are getting to know some of their cousins better.
John is looking excited to get this party started!
Dustin, Annie, and Amy
(Prince) John and Courtney
Nathan, Nicholas, Kyle, and Baylee
Barry reading 'THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS'
Holly and Heather listening intently.
Brett brought his fiance, Ashley to the party so we could all meet her.
After everyone left, we got the house put back together and got ready for Santa to come. It was so fun to have Heather, Brian, and Holly stay overnight and spend Christmas morning with us. John and I truly feel blessed to have such wonderful children and are grateful for any time that we can all be together!
The house is finally quiet and Santa has come!
Looks like Santa was good to us this year
My Reflective Self:
I often find myself wishing for one more big Warner Family Christmas Eve with every member of the family together (like we did in Idaho - ham balls and all). While that may not be a feasible wish, as my parents, grandparents, Mary Jane, and Lindsay have passed away, and all my brothers' and sisters' families have grown larger and are spread all over the country, I am grateful for those childhood memories of being all together celebrating the birth of our Savior. I am grateful for an extended family that I love so much and I enjoy spending time with all of them. I love special occasions that brings us all together! I hope you all had a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!