According to James Corden, the most American thing you can say is "Oh my God, You Guys: this is amazing!" Those are the words that came to find when I finally figured out how to resize all of the photos in my photo bin on Photoshop! Cue the Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Hallelujah! I've watched an embarrassing number of tutorials and googled it so many times and nothing...today, I was just messing around with it and "Oh my gosh, You Guys!!!" Why should you care? Because it will no longer take me a ridiculously prohibitive amount of time to upload multiple photos to the blog.
Now, let's talk about Christmas so we can talk about what happened the day after Christmas. Years ago, Travis and I established a little rule in an attempt to avoid falling into the trap of allowing Christmas to become about gluttony, excess, and materialism. It's quite simple: each child gets 3 gifts. One gift is from Mom and Dad. One gift is from your sisters. And of course, Santa leaves a gift. We don't take issue with the way anyone else does Christmas, but this is the way that works for us. Our kids have plenty. PLENTY. All the more reason to keep Christmas simple.
This year, one more gift was added to the mix: Leanne got everyone a gift and vice versa.
Leanne asked for one thing: a "Hit Bit (Fit Bit) like Mom's." You see, my mom was a slave to her Fit bit. It was rather funny. Apparently the darn thing buzzes at you when you've been inactive for a period of time. Well, when this would happen, Mama Hop would just bounce up from wherever she was and dart out the door to walk. No explanation; no farewell. It was like a mirage: now you see her...now you don't.
The void where gifts from Mama Hop may have been, was filled by several of her wonderful friends who sent so many fun things for the girls.
Gifts galore, wrapped in loving wishes from sweet friends and family.
Karen, about that microphone: we need to talk. I can hear Mama Hop's cackle from the heavens as Josie walks around the house singing at the top of her lungs, amplified by that darn microphone!
And then there's Merryn, our 40 year-old trapped in a 7 year-old's body. Santa fulfilled her only request: office supplies. Look at that face:
We all know the best gifts are the homemade ones, like this nifty bracelet the girls made for Travis. Forget the Rolex, Gucci, and Versace. It doesn't get any more stylish than plastic beads, strung with love.
When it was all said and done, and all of the gifts were opened, Travis went downstairs to retrieve one final gift in a big box. It was a family gift. Here's a clip:
That's right: after having a very difficult year, we ended 2018 in "The Happiest Place on Earth." Stay tuned for more!