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Finishing up Christmas...

Monday, January 12, 2009
So, as it grew closer to Christmas, my incessant need to bake and sew kicked in. Yes, I think I'm crazy most of the time too, so it doesn't hurt my feelings if you all share that sentiment with me. :) About a week and a half before Christmas, I decided that I should make the kids some outfits for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. I had already purchased some truly adorable outfits for one of the two days at the Holly Day market. Yet, I guess that wasn't enough in my mind. I started staying up late at night working on my projects. The first couple of nights I would crawl into bed at about midnight, thinking that I had lost all sanity for trying to do this amidst a heavy concert season and shopping. By the end of that first week, I was staying up until 3 or 4 a.m. trying to finish up projects. And, while I was exhausted and realized how ridiculous it was, I continued. It was as if I couldn't get enough. So, I continued and made Jake a pair of pajama pants and Bailey a nightgown (which I actually finished on Christmas Eve!!). I also decided to bake cookies and pies and try out a few new recipes for Christmas Eve at my mom's. Oh, and there was the night that I volunteered to be one of Santa's helpers at the Kentucky Horse Park. The three days before Christmas, I averaged about 3 hours of sleep at night. I guess I should not have been so insulted when everyone kept telling me that I looked exhausted on Christmas Eve.

It could have also been the drive to eastern Kentucky on the evening before Christmas Eve that exhausted me. Many of you might recall that the roads turned icy that day and the Interstate was closed in spots throughout central and eastern Kentucky and West Virginia. It typically takes us about 2 hours to get to my mom and dad's. On this day, it took me a little over eight hours. Yes, you read it correctly, EIGHT hours. INSANE! I was by myself with Bailey and Jake and absolutely no form of entertainment for them. I had refused them all but one toy each (which they had grown tired of before we were out of Lexington) because I knew they would get so much for Christmas and didn't want to have to pack it all back. It was the most miserable trip ever. I was a nervous wreck, tired from all of the late nights I had pulled prior to the trip, and Brad was about an hour behind me, leaving me feeling vulnerable and insecure in traveling with our kids alone. At one point, traffic actually stopped on the Interstate. It was simply too slick to move without sliding and we did nothing but sit on the road. Of course, that would be the moment that Bailey would need to go to the restroom. After about 30 minutes of sitting, hoping we could get to the next exit, I got out of the car and let Bailey pee on the side of the road. We slipped and slid until we got back into the car and waited at least another half hour before moving. I was completely frustrated. But, while sitting there, I realized that it could be much worse. I had passed at least 20 car accidents on my way. And yet, I had made it so far - only 30 miles from my parents' house - without any major problems. I could be sitting on the side of the road with injured children or worse. Instead, Brad and I met up on the next exit (Olive Hill), parked in a parking lot since we couldn't re-enter the Interstate, munched on some crackers and waited for the roads to be cleared and re-opened. Our babies slept through most of that time, giving us time to just chill out and wait without any major complaints. All we wanted to do is get home to our families, all of whom were safe and sound, happy and healthy. Despite the horrible trip and frustration, I am so thankful that we were safe and that we weren't among the many accidents that night.

Fortunately, the rest of our holiday wasn't as frustrating as that night. It was actually one of the easiest holidays we've had - not as rushed as usual. I cooked on Christmas Eve at my mom's (she had to work until 1) and we spent our evening visiting at both of my grandparents' and opening gifts with my mom, dad, brothers, Angela, and the boys. The kids had a great time - they got way too much for Christmas and really enjoyed the anticipation of Santa Claus. They went to bed at about 11 and I fell asleep with them, only to have Brad waking me up at midnight to get the Santa stuff out and ready. It was about 3 a.m. when we went to bed. At 7 a.m., they were ready to see what Santa had brought. And let me tell you, it was all worth it. They were so excited about everything... a little overwhelmed at moments, but so excited. Bailey went straight to the swimming puppy that she had made a song and dance of telling us about (which has yet to be really played with). Brad and I had used the puppy when she was being bad by telling her that Santa would not bring it if she was bad. She took a long look at the puppy, pushed her hair out of her sleepy little eyes and said, "I must have been a really good girl." Priceless. :) In their sleepiness, she and Jake walked right past the two Power Wheels Jeeps that they received (thanks to Black Friday sales). When I pointed them out, Jake jumped up in the pink Barbie jeep and Bailey jumped into the blue Hot Wheels jeep. Clearly, they were not awake. lol... We spent Christmas Day with Brad's side of the family. I really enjoyed Christmas at Kathy's this year. It usually feels like we are so rushed to get from point A to point B, but this year, we were able to relax and take our time. It was nice to really get to spend time together. And, we totally racked up. :)

In any case, the holidays were crazy busy and so much fun. We were all spoiled to death - I don't know how we made it home with everything in one trip. Brad apparently missed his calling... or maybe after moving me so many times throughout college, he got lots of practice. :)

It took me almost my entire week off to get caught up, but I don't regret a moment of it. I think that's what I always love about the holidays - the crazy hustle and bustle getting everything ready and then the total crash that is Christmas Day and the few days following. :)

Here are some of my favorites from Christmas. The tan outfits that Bailey and Jake are wearing are the ones that I made. Bailey's blue nightgown is the one I made and Jake's red pajama pants are the ones I made him. :)