Christmas Eve 2020

Our Christmas Eve fun from 2020

Every year we have our Core Crew Christmas on Dec 23rd and then on December 24th we go over to my in-laws house for Christmas!

This year Zach went to play golf with his dad, uncle, aunt and cousins so the kids and I had the morning to get everything packed up and ready and to make our reindeer food that we’d failed to make the day prior!

We also said goodbye to our elves until next year (thanks to The Confetti Box for making it extra fun this year with our elf friends!).

The kids took GOOD baths since I knew they’d be spending the day playing with cousins and we wanted a nice lazy Christmas Day the next day when we got home.

At G-Mama and Big Papa’s house I put Spear down for his nap and the big cousins all came up with competitive games to play. They had big plans for a backyard football game but it was raining so they did a four square set up in the garage until the rain cleared!

It was an extra special Christmas getting to have Ella and Elizabeth as part of the family πŸ™‚ . They fit right in and helped Tessie look her Christmas-best πŸ˜‰

G-Mama bought ornaments for the kids to decorate which I think was a def step up from the gingerbread houses. WAY less messy, WAY easier AND have an end result that you can enjoy year after year rather than just throwing in the trash!

Kye made his Covid themed haha!

Every year G-Mama also puts on a Christmas movie for the kids so we got Spear up from nap so he could participate in the cousin snuggle Christmas movie fun!

It was the first time G-Mama didn’t have ANY high chairs at her house in as long as I can remember! All the babies are official BIG KIDS!!! It’s also hilarious that there are so many grandkids that they can’t even all fit at one kids table…TEN grandkids total!

I also love that all of their ages are so close together. It makes for epic cousin time and it’s awesome that they are old enough for the adults to eat in the dining room and to trust the kids to handle things while they eat. I have THE BEST memories of my own time at the kid cousin table growing up and love that my kids are having that same experience.

Another tradition? Dancing by the fire pit. Which cracks me UP. Mrs. Charlotte is a helicopter grandma. Like my kids are literally safer with her than they are with me because she has eyes ON THEM at all times! I trust her completely and totally b/c I KNOW she takes grandma duty seriously. So it’s hilarious that she has a dance party…around a fire. Hello high anxiety situation haha

Since it was raining again we had the party under the parking area of the shed and Aaron and Casey brought a tradition from Aaron’s family to roast donuts and put ice cream on top – SO YUMMY.

Kye was sick last year and didn’t get to enjoy the donut so he was super pumped for it this year. We played a wide variety of songs for everyone and the kids danced and danced and burned off those donut calories πŸ™‚

Big Papa loves to pull up an app to track Santa every year. The kids love seeing where he is on his way to us and it builds that anticipation for bedtime πŸ˜‰

Growing up Zach and his siblings and cousins all stayed the night at THEIR grandparent’s house on Christmas Eve and all slept in one room together each year. In years past the older kids have slept on the floor in Mr Rusty and Mrs. Charlotte’s room but this year with Carter and Tess in the mix and adding Ella and Elizabeth to the crew something had to be figured out!

Mr. Rusty and Zach converted Casey’s childhood bedroom into the bunk bed room! They built two sets of bunkbeds WITH a trundle under each so there is a bed for SIX kids – perfect for the girl cousins!

The plan is to alternate years so this year the girls got to sleep in the bunk room and the boys slept in G-Mama and Big Papa’s room. They were all SO excited!

We fed the reindeer on the back porch because it was raining and then G-Mama read The Night Before Christmas before we tucked all the babies into bed for the night.

What is SO funny is that literally yall every year someone is sick at Christmas. We’ve had legit ER visits on Christmas Eve. We’ve had stomach bugs with puking kids, we’ve had high fevers, we’ve had the flu and everyone wearing masks before masks were cool πŸ˜‰

Yet this year? The Christmas of a PANDEMIC…NOT A SINGLE PERSON GOT SICK. How crazy is that?!? All 18 of us felt great and were 100% healthy all of Christmas! Truly a Christmas miracle!

Our tradition over the years has become to get the kids into bed then go ahead and do the adult opening on the night of Christmas Eve. It allows us to ENJOY that process more and I think it’s a great tradition for Zach’s parents too.

Christmas morning with that many grandkids is CRAZY and I’m sure THEY enjoy getting to spend quality time with their kids too and the Christmas Eve opening allows for that. We take our time and take turns and it always turns into lots of joking around.

This year instead of all of us buying for every sibling we drew names and it was great! Courtney got Zach’s name and got him the PERFECT gift for his office πŸ™‚

We got into bed earlier this year than I think we ever have AND huge bonus points for us all getting a good nights sleep too! Ready for all the fun of Christmas morning πŸ™‚

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Emily Parker

Hey Y’all, I’m Emily! I’m a stay at home mom and consider parenting to be my passion. Disney is my happiest place and I love making memories as a family together. I’m a big believer in transparency and share all of my real-life moments as a mother of four.

My work has been featured on Love What Matters, Today Parenting and Babywise.Life. I’m also honored to be a member of the Babywise Friendly Blog Network.

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