23rd Day: Christmas with Maternal Grandparent 

The twenty-third day we went to my dad’s house to celebrate an early Christmas with him and my West Coast living sister and brother-in-law!

I made some caprese cups and cucumber finger sandwiches to bring, at my dad’s request.  He also had a spread of his own appetizers and a Christmas ham dinner ready for all of us.  It was a lovely meal that was finished off by French Silk pie-I was one happy mama!

Marshall loved telling everyone how school, sports, and friends are going.  He also showed off the treats he made and brought to share.

We exchanged Christmas presents and the kids were thoroughly spoiled.  Marshall was buried in Hot Wheels sets and Legos, Vi got every imaginable Poppy Troll (the pink one) imaginable.  Even Francesca was spoiled with some new sleepers and clothes!

Looking at the complete Troll friend set with Auntie

Opening presents. True to form, Marshall tore through them as Vi ripped small pieces- one at a time- from the present and had to make sure everyone’s paper was shoved deep into the trash bag

Carefully ripping off paper. She also fought Auntie on the bows- Auntie likes to save them and Vi insists it’s garbage that must be thrown away.

Unwrapping a hunting game (he got two: one duck hunting and one deer hunting)

Patiently waiting for Papa to free her Troll. She loves styling hair.

“Ooohing” over new slippers

We had a nice day with family, filled with delicious food and fun toys.  After, we headed back home for the kids to wrap the gifts the kids got for one another!

Flashback time!

On random days, when we were able to ditch the other sibling, the kids picked out a present for the other.  We do this as a sort of learning exercise: 1) it teaches budgeting. The kids are given a set amount and then have to shop within their budget 2) it teaches the joy of giving and helps strengthen the sibling bond. Being thoughtful of one another and thinking of what the other wants instead of what they want.

Violet was the first up, she picked out a Chase Paw Patrol stuffed animal for Marshall.

After buying it, we had Christmas with Grandma Glade who happened to also buy Marshall a Chase stuffed animal.  So it was back to the store we went to exchange it for the Marshall (the character, not the big brother) stuffed animal.  I threw Violet on my back for that fiasco- no way was I waddling after her while we wait in the customer service line.  Babywearing for the win!


Now back to tonight, I precut the wrapping paper and had Vi try wrapping it as best she could with as little help as possible.  She also picked out a tag, “wrote” on it, and picked out a bow to put on the front of her brother’s gift.  I know she’s not quite a year and a half old, but she likes to be a big girl and I believe in challenging kids to help them gain skills. Vi was such a good girl and she even picked out her brother’s favorite color for a bow (blue).
Marshall used his budget to get his sister a baby Elsa doll.  Vi definitely adores Elsa (maybe it’s that they are both older sisters? Or maybe it’s the ice powers…) it’s sure to be a hit for his sissy.

Marshall carefully wrapped his sister’s present in his room.  Picked out a tag and nicely wrote “To: Vi From: Marshall”- he was sure to point out that I gave him a longer name than I did his sister, ha!  He was proud as he dug through the bow bag to find a purple bow for Violet.

The kids are now all ready for Christmas Day!  We will do our Christmas Eve traditions tomorrow and then be all set for the 25th.  Both kids are so excited to see their sibling open up the gift they picked out; it really is great to see them find the love of giving during this holiday season.

For now, we are all tuckered out!  Good night and happy gift wrapping, friends!


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