Overall, though, it felt like a pretty magical weekend at my parents’ house. We enjoyed crisp, clear days and tons of amazing food and wine, and spent lots of time laughing and simply enjoying each other’s company.
Natalie was the recipient of an overwhelming number of gifts, thanks to the generosity of so many family and friends. I think the whole experience was just baffling to her, and she seems to still be recovering a bit from such a wild disruption to her routine. She’s having a ball trying out all of her new toys and reading her new books, and if we ever have the energy to get ourselves out of pajamas I’m sure she’ll enjoy all of her new clothes, too!
Here are some highlights from the weekend:
Christmas Eve Day. While my dad cleaned the house in preparation for visitors, and I peeled carrots for our supper, Mike snapped a few pictures of our girl taking in the sights from behind the sliding glass door in my parents’ kitchen.
Christmas morning. Natalie opened her stocking first thing, while coffee brewed and the grown-ups got themselves ready for the day ahead. The best gifts Santa left in N’s stocking were some groovy sunglasses and festive reindeer antlers, which she (surprisingly happily) modeled.
Christmas Day, opening presents and seeing Natalie enjoy them. She is loving her Laugh’n’Learn Home Playset, and especially enjoys opening and closing the door and pulling up to stand and checking out the various moving parts.
Our budgie also got her very own wooden train set from her Poppy, which she loved right away. I’m hoping to start collecting pieces for a Christmas village, and this train set will be so sweet displayed every year alongside little houses and shops.
Other gifts included a shopping cart cover that doubles as a playmat; a pop-up version of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas; her very own tiny gardening gloves; musical toys and instruments; her first Cabbage Patch Doll; lots of hand-knit snugglies like sweaters, socks, hats, and mittens; and more. We have yet to fully unpack and assess all the amazing gifts she (and we) received–it will be like Christmas morning all over again as we continue to go through everything for a second time.
On a different note, our little family seems to finally be on the other side of a nasty stomach bug that flew through the house beginning the afternoon before Christmas Eve. Natalie had it first (we think she picked it up at daycare, where another baby was out sick last week with a similar bug), and Mike was next beginning the morning after Christmas. I was last, afflicted just last night. We are all a bit weak and more than a bit tired, but seem to be nearly recovered. Although I am sad to be missing out on our Florida vacation thanks to this incredible blizzard, it is a relief that we didn’t have to think about traveling while battling this latest illness. We are quite content to sip tea and juice, read to Natalie, and hunker down post-Christmas.