Tuesday, December 31, 2013

christmas eve

earlier that day, we made pb balls and chocolate covered bacon.  YUM!

One of Ruby's favorite gifts: a music box!  She cherishes it!

Ah!  Christmas Eve!!  One of my most favorite days of the year!!  Growing up, Katie, Nick, and I anxiously awaited going to my grandparent's house.  I only had 5 Christmases with my Grandpa which is just way too bad since I know he was an absolute HOOT.  But Grandma did Christmas really well, even without Grandpa.  She was the biggest shopper I have ever known (although my mom is quickly filling those shoes) which was great, because we all got great gifts!!  I'm pretty sure I got a new doll probably 10 years in a row... Grandma had a weakness for dolls.  The final year that Katie received a doll, she re-gifted it to my grandma the next year.  And that doll went back and forth for quite a few years which we all thought was hilarious!  Grandma always got a bunch of pizza and had goodies-galore.  The last few Christmases we had with her, Grandma and I got together to make her sacred chocolate covered cherries.  And I can't help but think of her every. single. time. I have a chocolate covered cherry.  They'll never taste as perfect as hers.  And then there was this very yummy drink that Grandma made for just the adults.  But of course, we could always pressure my dad into letting us drink some.  I guess you could say that I can trace my first alcohol-buzz back to Grandma.  Aw, special!  And after the drinks, Grandma pulled out some wacky game to play. For many years, we'd play dirty BINGO.  And yes, we played dirty.  We would unwrap a present of our choice once we got a bingo but then that gift was up for grabs.  Our family would spy the couple of things that my uncle had his eye on and we'd make sure that we always stole those most-wanted gifts!  Anyways, I guess BINGO got a little too dirty... Grandma switched it up.  But things got complicated because when you change to new games, you have to give directions.  And in our family, Grandma had to repeat the directions over and over again because said uncle would throw all of these game scenarios at her just to make sure that everyone understood every rule of this new game!  Even though they were simple games!!  One year it was musical chairs; another year, chubby bunny; and I think the last game we played at our Christmas Eve party before Grandma passed away was the 'put-a-quarter-between-your-butt cheeks and drop-it-in-a-can game'.  Grandma would just laugh and laugh.  She knew how to entertain.  She knew how to have a great time.  At the end of the night, our guts were full, our trunk was full, and my heart is still full.

And now, my mom carries on the Christmas Eve tradition that her mom had mastered.  And, again, she's filling those shoes quite well!  We even had a 'mystery Santa' this year which my kids loved and Katie's kids pestered with questions that only Santa would know!  Pretty hilarious!  And our vehicle was full of gifts when we left really late!  I'm sure my kids will remember these times as fondly as I remember the good ole Christmas Eves with my Grandma.

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