Charlotte (3 months)
Annika (3 years)
Hailey (22 months)
Saben (5 years)
"I don't want to sit here for a photo!"
I did make a hat for each of the grandkids. Snowboarder hats for the two older ones.
Hailey's Christmas hat is on the left. The pink one didn't turn out too good (you can't see the detailed pattern because of the fuzzy yarn I chose) so I gave it to Charlotte a month ago.
I got each of the girls teddy bears (Saben is too old for one :( ) and then I used my embroidery machine to make a heart patch for each one that says "Grandma loves Charlotte" (or Hailey or Annika.) Each one of them is super soft and cuddly! (Oh, and so are the kids)
What a fun time with family once again this year. We are so very blessed! Traditions here include food. We usually have Pierogi (Ukrainian potato dumplings) on Christmas Eve. My dad's parents immigrated from the Ukraine so it is a tradition passed down from his parents. This year we had it for breakfast along with other breakfast items on the 26th, since that is when Kari & Kyle and kids came to celebrate Christmas with our side of the family. All the kids/grandkids were here for breakfast. We usually have cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning, but since our kids are grown and gone, traditions change and get passed down to the next generation. I brought homemade cinnamon rolls to Shauna's house for Christmas brunch. She and Pete are such good hosts! She had a crowd with Pete's side of the family and Jason, Dave and I.
Then there are the gingerbread men that I made every year before Christmas so the kids could decorate them with frosting and all sorts of candies. Shauna has taken over that tradition as well and had her daughter and nieces and nephews do the decorating both at her house and again yesterday at our house. FUN! Kids are so creative!
I also treated the family to homemade lefse, which is a Norwegian dessert. Dave's neighbor growing up was of Norwegian heritage and made lefse and homemade donuts and would share some with Dave's family. Luckily I got the recipe years ago and decided to try to keep this tradition going too. All of this stuff is really pretty calorie laden! Lefse is made from mashed potatoes and flour and then you roll it into thin rounds and fry it until it bubbles up a bit and gets brown. They are stored in the refrigerator and you simply spread one with butter, sprinkle sugar on it and roll it up and enjoy! Here is what it looks like:
We always have a gift exchange with the extended family, who arrived yesterday at 3:00 and it's not a white elephant exchange but everyone provides a gift and then we draw numbers and do the typical stealing from each other. It is always a fun tradition! This year I saw someone selling marshmallow/hot dog roasting "sticks" at a craft show. They were made from golf clubs with the heads cut off and forks screwed in their place. What a great idea! I thought Dave could surely make these in no time and that since everyone in the family (except Dave and I) enjoy camping that this would certainly be a great item for the gift exchange. Unfortunately Dave discovered that the metal was way too hard for normal tools, so he took them to his friend, Marv, who has a drill press, and Marv ended up drilling the holes and attaching the forks. What a great friend he is! Here are a few photos of the gift exchange:
Chip, Shauna, Kari & Jason
Jason, Emily, Bob, Jill, Nathan w/Kyle & Pete in back
Here are those hot dog roasters!
Chip, Brian, Kari
Dave did not end up with this doughnut maker!We were missing several members of the extended family and we still had 18 of us. Sorry you couldn't be with us Wilsons, Donna, Roger, and other nieces & nephews with kids. I think it has been quite a while since all 36 of us have been together at the same time! Maybe next year.
Hope you all had a very merry Christmas and have a wonderful 2011!!