Oh, we've been busy! But I haven't even taken the camera out of it's bag, to be honest. I may have to add a photo or two to this post later. When I find where I stashed my camera with all the holiday tidying going on around here...
On the 15th, Sarah and I kicked off the holiday season by going to see Christmas On the Air at a tiny local theatre. Then I worked late into the night on stuff for the next day's bake sale.
On the 16th, we had our busiest day of the school year. It is always exhausting, but also rewarding. In the morning, parents and kids packed 125 bags for less fortunate people in the school neighbourhood, filled with practical items and homemade shortbread. The kids make each one a card and we parents love to read what they've written each year as we are getting everything organized. In the afternoon, I helped to organize the Bake Sale set-up, then home for an hour before I was back to help run the Bake Sale. Whew! The school has the annual sale along with it's Christmas Sing-Along. There are many musicians at the school so they make up a makeshift band and play along while the kids and their families belt out holiday tunes. I must admit, I was glad to be in the quiet cafeteria, cleaning up after the Bake Sale! It is so hot in that crowded gym!
On the 17th, we were all extremely glad to say good-bye to school for the holidays. Two weeks of sleeping in and wearing pjs as long as we want! We drove around looking at Christmas lights and walked a few blocks of Trinity Street. We still need to return and do the whole things when we are dressed warmer.
On the 18th, Jay and I went to the annual holiday potluck at David and Susan's, sans children. Lots of yummy food and hilarious conversation, which seemed to hover around the topic of vasectomies an awful lot!
On the 19th, we had an annual gathering of friends at K and A's house, complete with kids. Alot of homemade Irish Cream was consumed, and big excitement was in the air with Chris and Diana so close to their due date with their first babe.
On the 20th, my sister came over with Maya and Brynn and we did something in the kitchen. I don't think I can call it baking. Colleen was making up rap songs about Christmas fudge, which nearly had me peeing my pants. Oh, remember the fudge fiasco of last year? It was repeated. Yes, we managed to completely screw up the fudge again this year. I think I have to wait a while before attempting it again. If at all. But our Grandma is gone, and we feel like it still needs to be made, so tackle it we will! I did have success the second time last year...
On the 21st, we celebrated the Winter Solstice with friends. Sarah and Vicki and their families came over for a lovely, relaxing evening. The food was easy (meat and vegan shepherd's pies, mac and cheese, red lentil soup and a yummy salad) and we had a lot of conversation, despite 9 kids running all around us! I'm thinking potluck casserole-type dishes is the the way to entertain withour stress. Hopefully I will remember this at other times of the year! (and next Christmas...)
On the 22nd, it was PopPop's birthday, so we gathered with friends and family for our annual celebration. Usually we host it here, but this year we went to my in-laws. I must say it was a lot more relaxing for us this way, even though we like to do it! Jay and I came home last night feeling ill, we were sooooo FULL! After the kids went to bed, we slumped onto the couch and couldn't move for the next hour or two. Well, except for my hands, which were working the knitting needles. I only have one gift left, which will easily be finished today. I purposely cut down the amount of knit gifts this year, and then took my time with them. I knew I could have sat for two days earlier in the month and knocked them all off, but then I know I would have found a new list of stuff to knit with the time left, so I spread it out and kept it stress-free. I hope I also remember this next year. See the point of blogging? To remind yourself of what you discovered the year before so you don't repeat mistakes!
Today I plan to hit the Drive with Jay to complete our Christmas shopping and gather the remaining food items needed for the Big Day of eating! I've got local, pastured turkey (20 lbs) and ham (10 lbs) plus an enormous bag of Brussel's sprouts, so I'm good to go! I'd better start making my list!