Christmas Recap!

Newlyweds (and brides/grooms) can post here to discuss life beyond their wedding plans

Christmas Recap!

Postby jennelled » Wed Dec 26, 2018 8:54 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season?

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped?

3. What was your favorite gift that you received?

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)?

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said?
Jennelle: wife to Matt 06.07.08, mom to Audrey Grace 02.05.12, Clara Rose 08.06.14, and Corinne Elise 09.24.17
Image Image Image
User avatar
jennelled
Level 19
Level 19
 
Posts: 14998
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 11:09 am
Wedding Date: Summer 2008

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby jennelled » Wed Dec 26, 2018 9:13 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season? We have a lot of annual traditions, but my very favorite thing we did this year was something new! We took the kids to Target and gave them a small budget to shop for their sisters, us, and my mom. We split up with the girls so the gifts would all be a surprise, and seeing them put so much thought into gifting was absolutely adorable. The big girls hand wrote the tags on the presents, and their little handwriting is just too much - I could cry just thinking about it! And despite having a budget, they picked out some great gifts - and that includes the 12+ face masks I received. :laughing:

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped? Santa knocked it out of the park, but I was most excited to give my big girls Garmin Vivofit Jr 2s. And they were thrilled! I should have realized how much Audrey would take to the points system, since she really enjoys her teachers using Class Dojo / Dojo points. We need to set rewards and assign point values to some more chores, but I think I finally found a way to make her make her bed!

Other than for the kids, I got my mom a pair of embroidered velvet loafers from Talbots. I remember her having several pairs when I was little, and I loved the memory. The ones from my childhood had nutcrackers, wreaths, and trees (all different pairs), but this pair has an old red truck just like her grandpa used to drive. I was SO excited to find them!! She was really happy with them, too - she said she'd tried to buy them but they were sold out of her size.

Oh! And one more. I had cross stitch family ornaments made for my dad and my SIL, and my SIL seemed really happy with hers. I spent a lot of time adjusting the design to reflect their personalities (for example, my niece is wearing purple glasses and cat ears in it!). She texted me to say she hadn't felt very Christmas-y this year, and it meant a lot to her. So that made me really happy. :)

3. What was your favorite gift that you received? I got some bigger gifts, but honestly I was most excited about some cute tortoiseshell hair things! I got a cute barrette and a pony tail holder with an acrylic "bow." I also got a plaid scarf I wanted from J. Crew.

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)? We've talked about letting the kids buy each other gifts for several years, but this was the first time we actually did it. And I'm seriously obsessed. We tried to pare back on gifts from us this year, and next year I think we'll pare back even further to account for the gifts the kids will pick out.

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said? Nope, none here! We only see my mom on Christmas since everyone else is in StL. All the gifts were great!
Jennelle: wife to Matt 06.07.08, mom to Audrey Grace 02.05.12, Clara Rose 08.06.14, and Corinne Elise 09.24.17
Image Image Image
User avatar
jennelled
Level 19
Level 19
 
Posts: 14998
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 11:09 am
Wedding Date: Summer 2008

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby LizAnn » Wed Dec 26, 2018 10:16 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season?

My kids are at amazing ages for Christmas! Jack was so excited for Santa and kept hearing jingle bells. It was so sweet. And Cheska does whatever he does...

We also did the kids buying each other thing, although just each other, not us. Next year maybe we will have them buy something for us too. They were so excited and they legitimately each picked out a toy that the other LOVES. I thought they may be too young for it, but it worked out great!

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped?

The kids loved all their gifts. My husband got a new coat that I thought he would love, and he did!

3. What was your favorite gift that you received?

My husband got me shoes and wireless ear buds. I need to exchange both for different reasons, but they were really thoughtful gifts and I love that!

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)?

Our entire Christmas was pretty great! We will try to pare down on gifts next year. The kids opened one and wanted to play with it, they did not care about quantity for sure! I felt like we had to force them to open all of their gifts because they were just so excited each time they opened one.

We also tried to do a cookie decorating night. Next year I will have some sugar cookies ready to decorate. We had to split it over two days because the process just takes too long for kids. Lesson learned.

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said?

Our entire Christmas weekend was fantastic until last night. The entire Christmas evening with my in-laws was a WTF. My MIL got my daughter a size 3 in kids (not even 3t) dress... She is 18 months old. It is HUGE! And then said "Hmm That looks too big?" Did you not notice when you wrapped it? I was super frustrated about that because I just felt like she put no thought into that gift at all and that was the only thing she got her. Also, 18 month old girls are super easy to buy for... AND we have amazon wish lists for our kids if you are stumped. I know it sounds ungrateful, but I guess I just feel like she put no time or effort into picking something out for my daughter while the other grandkids all got super personalized gifts.

My husband made a joke about a gift his mom gave him that let her know that he knew what it was from a conversation she and I had, so then I looked like a HUGE jerk. The reality is way different, but there is no explaining it at this point.

Also, my SIL insists on hosting Christmas even though her house is way too small for it and her kids are older so it would be much easier for us to host, and then did not have enough places set for us to all sit at the table. And had a precious moments nativity on the floor right where both of my kids can break it. Ugh! She also gave all the kids glass plates and the adults paper plates, and wanted my 4 year old to eat with a glass plate on a backless bar stool at a counter... :shock:

It was such a bummer to end on such a sour note.
Image
User avatar
LizAnn
Level 10
Level 10
 
Posts: 1083
Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 6:57 pm
Wedding Date: Spring 2011

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby k.linn » Wed Dec 26, 2018 11:02 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season? I love the holidays, and I tend to overschedule us, but it’s all so fun! I’ve been taking Audrey to teddy bear tea at the ritz with my mom since she was 2. This year, Hadley joined us for the first time. We also love doing the carriage ride through tilles to look at lights, and p and I always pick one night to surprise the kids, throw on pjs, grab some chick fil a and drive around looking at lights. We schedule individual shopping trips with each kid to pick out gifts for their siblings, and I love that one-on-one time. We also do this thing called Soft Enough for a King. It’s a book that comes with a manger, cloth baby Jesus and “straw” slips of paper. Each slip represents an act of service. Each night before dinner, everyone writes down one kind act from that day that they performed, shares it, and places it in the manger. We start December 1st so that by Christmas Eve the manger is soft enough for the king ;) they love it, and I’m particularly tradition-bound & freaked out that they would each want one for their own families/fight over ours, so I’ve bought one for each kiddo. We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped? We don’t typically do big gifts, but our older kids are now of the age where they want more expensive things. Micah got a switch and Audrey a chromebook, and they were both so grateful and shocked. We loved seeing their reactions.

3. What was your favorite gift that you received? P always makes me a gift, and this year it was an artwork display thing for the kids’ stuff. My parebts also blew us away by giving us a nice chunk of money to help offset all of Audrey’s medical expenses (which we are—well, were!) still paying.

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)? One of these years I will wrap gifts before midnight on Christmas Eve ;)

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said? Nope!
Kim: wife to Phil (07.01.06) and Mama to Audrey, Micah, Hadley, and Malachi.
[url
User avatar
k.linn
Level 15
Level 15
 
Posts: 5294
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:45 pm
Location: Wentzville
Wedding Date: Summer 2006

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby *K » Fri Dec 28, 2018 11:56 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season? We are late to the game, especially since Harper is 7.5 but we just got an elf on the shelf this year. I really think Harper would have been over the magic of Christmas this year (and Santa) but she loved that Elf. She doesn't always show her emotions so it was really sweet to watch. Zara couldn't have cared less... In general, though, this year was much slower paced and had time off, which isn't the norm in my career field and probably won't happen again. I took the time to enjoy it by relaxing and staying up late to watch A Million Little Things every night.

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped? I was most excited to give Zara her vtech camera and it was definitely her favorite gift. She loves it! I was also super excited to give my SIL the fabfitfun box (I really wanted it for myself!). I saw her bring it back out and go through every item slowly which was nice to see.

3. What was your favorite gift that you received? I received my 23andMe results. On one hand, the results were kind of boring but it's also not exactly what I expected. I thought I was mostly Italian but I'm only 1% Italian. I also only recognized a few names on my relative list. There are a few people that are somewhat close relatives and I'd like to try and figure out how we are related. I also got a wine subscription, which I wasn't expecting.

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)? Just chill out. :)

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said? I can't think of anything!
Image
Image
Image
User avatar
*K
Level 15
Level 15
 
Posts: 4990
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2008 4:47 pm
Location: Metro Area
Wedding Date: Summer 2008

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby Leann » Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:17 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season? Honestly, after the chaos of school events in December and planning two birthday parties, my favorite thing to do was relax and not have plans. The kids went to Christmas club during the first week of school break. They loved it and I got some time to wrap things up (literally and figuratively). I also love the after Christmas sales, ha.

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped? When my sister and family came to visit this summer, we did family photos. We kept it a secret from my parents and gave them a large canvas of all of us plus a smaller collage of the kids. On Xmas Eve we did a video call so we could all see them open it, and they absolutely loved it. Even my dad has texted me to tell me how much he likes it, and he is so difficult to shop for. I also consider it a major feat that 4 children kept it a surprise.

3. What was your favorite gift that you received? Matt did so well this year and basically bought most of my wishlist, including a beautiful oxblood handbag I wanted. He also got me a beginner cross stitch kit and a book of inappropriate patterns (I'm almost finished with my first one).
My parents sent money, which I'm really excited about as well.

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)? This year was the first year that I did any wrapping before Xmas Eve, and I will definitely continue that! Also, we try to limit the kids' gifts because there's just so much stuff. We're comfortable with the amount we get for them, but add in grandparent gifts and it's just ridiculous. So next year we will try to limit gifts from us more (at least that's what we're telling ourselves now).

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said? Not really, and that's a silver lining about living so far from family. Clara and Lily did get sick, so that was a downer, but at least they waited until school was out. :good:
Image
Image
Image
[url=http://s211.photobucket.com/user/mattleann/media/Bringer%20Family%20072_zpszf9jpq5t.jpg.html]


http://www.bringertoengland.blogspot.com
Leann
Level 14
Level 14
 
Posts: 3864
Joined: Thu Apr 26, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: North Yorkshire, UK
Wedding Date: Fall 2007

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby durbaa » Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:53 am

k.linn wrote:We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.


Every year I buy ourselves an ornament and since we've had Hanna, I buy her one too. I also agree with giving them to her once she has a tree of her own. I'm curious though, do you just buy the one or do you buy two? I feel like I'm going to be sad when I have to give her our ornaments and our tree is naked. :laughing:
~*Ashley*~

Image

http://gettinghitched.weebly.com My DIY bio...a work in progress

Image
User avatar
durbaa
Level 10
Level 10
 
Posts: 1422
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:10 pm
Location: Wentzville, Missouri
Wedding Date: Fall 2009

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby durbaa » Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:10 am

1. What was your favorite activity this holiday season?

I love Christmas and all the hustle and bustle. We had to skip one of my favorite traditions of walking through a light display in our area because we were out of town, but we were at Disney so that made up for it. We had so much fun with all of Disney's Christmas stuff, that we're talking about going again this year! Black Friday shopping with my sister this year was the best year yet, we'll for sure keep doing that.

2. What gift were you most excited about giving? Was the recipient as excited as you'd hoped?

All of Hanna's stuff. She was at such a fun age this year and I think her reactions were even better than I had hoped for.

3. What was your favorite gift that you received?

This is going to sound so cheesy but Christmas dishes were my favorite gift (although the prenatal massages are high up on the list too!)! I have been wanting Christmas dishes forever but kept skipping out on buying them for one reason or another. I was so surprised when I opened them from DH and that he even thought to get them!

4. Any changes to your holiday strategy for next year (lessons learned)?

100% less gifts for Hanna. We bought way too much. I think since we did a lot of it here and there we had no idea how much we had until we set it all out. Also, we've had my mom and stepdad over for Christmas breakfast/brunch for years. It's a tradition I've loved. Typically DH and I would get up early Christmas morning and exchange our gifts, then start preparing for them to come. We do Christmas Eve with my family and are never home until after midnight. It's never been that big of a deal in the past, but this year we ended up having to wake Hanna up to get everything done before my mom came. Next Christmas we're going to have to decide if we think she'll be old enough to be up from excitement (she'll be a little over 3) of Santa coming on her own, or if we'd have to wake her again. If we'll have to wake her, I think we're going to see if my mom can do either Christmas dinner or another day altogether. I'm a little bummed at the thought of that, but I would imagine it would only be for a year or two until Hanna is awake early on her own.

5. Did you have any WTF moments? Perhaps a gift you received, or something someone said?


Not really that I can think of. Well a really close family friend did tell me on Christmas Eve that I'm getting so big. He clarified that's what is supposed to be happening after I gave him a look, but still so annoying lol.
~*Ashley*~

Image

http://gettinghitched.weebly.com My DIY bio...a work in progress

Image
User avatar
durbaa
Level 10
Level 10
 
Posts: 1422
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:10 pm
Location: Wentzville, Missouri
Wedding Date: Fall 2009

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby jennelled » Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:44 am

durbaa wrote:
k.linn wrote:We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.


Every year I buy ourselves an ornament and since we've had Hanna, I buy her one too. I also agree with giving them to her once she has a tree of her own. I'm curious though, do you just buy the one or do you buy two? I feel like I'm going to be sad when I have to give her our ornaments and our tree is naked. :laughing:

My husband was HORRIFIED when his mom gave him all his ornaments. In his mind, they belong on HER tree, and our tree is for our own family memories. We get the kids yearly ornaments, but because of his reaction I'm fine with asking them if they want to take them when they leave. :)
Jennelle: wife to Matt 06.07.08, mom to Audrey Grace 02.05.12, Clara Rose 08.06.14, and Corinne Elise 09.24.17
Image Image Image
User avatar
jennelled
Level 19
Level 19
 
Posts: 14998
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 11:09 am
Wedding Date: Summer 2008

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby tebster616 » Wed Jan 02, 2019 12:52 pm

jennelled wrote:
durbaa wrote:
k.linn wrote:We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.


Every year I buy ourselves an ornament and since we've had Hanna, I buy her one too. I also agree with giving them to her once she has a tree of her own. I'm curious though, do you just buy the one or do you buy two? I feel like I'm going to be sad when I have to give her our ornaments and our tree is naked. :laughing:

My husband was HORRIFIED when his mom gave him all his ornaments. In his mind, they belong on HER tree, and our tree is for our own family memories. We get the kids yearly ornaments, but because of his reaction I'm fine with asking them if they want to take them when they leave. :)


We do yearly ornaments for each kid too (and the dog, lol). When I was growing up my aunt did them for us and I did take most of them (that I could find.) I figure if the kids want them they can take them. We also get an ornament for every place we take a trip to so that fills our tree up as well.
tebster616
Level 7
Level 7
 
Posts: 491
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 11:14 am

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby durbaa » Wed Jan 02, 2019 1:25 pm

tebster616 wrote:
jennelled wrote:
durbaa wrote:
k.linn wrote:We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.


Every year I buy ourselves an ornament and since we've had Hanna, I buy her one too. I also agree with giving them to her once she has a tree of her own. I'm curious though, do you just buy the one or do you buy two? I feel like I'm going to be sad when I have to give her our ornaments and our tree is naked. :laughing:

My husband was HORRIFIED when his mom gave him all his ornaments. In his mind, they belong on HER tree, and our tree is for our own family memories. We get the kids yearly ornaments, but because of his reaction I'm fine with asking them if they want to take them when they leave. :)


We do yearly ornaments for each kid too (and the dog, lol). When I was growing up my aunt did them for us and I did take most of them (that I could find.) I figure if the kids want them they can take them. We also get an ornament for every place we take a trip to so that fills our tree up as well.


Jennelle, I'm cracking up at your husbands reaction.

I'm not going to lie, our tree won't be naked haha! We get an ornament for our family, one for Hanna (one for soon to be baby #2), one for the dog, one from an ornament line we've done for about 8 years now, and any trips we take. And since I'm a sucker for all things Christmas, I couldn't limit myself to just one at Disney this year so we got several there. Just this year I think we got 10 or 11 and then a lot of times family will gift us some (I know I got at least one from my sister). So I know it will be fine, and who knows, the kids may not want them.
~*Ashley*~

Image

http://gettinghitched.weebly.com My DIY bio...a work in progress

Image
User avatar
durbaa
Level 10
Level 10
 
Posts: 1422
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:10 pm
Location: Wentzville, Missouri
Wedding Date: Fall 2009

Re: Christmas Recap!

Postby k.linn » Wed Jan 02, 2019 3:03 pm

durbaa wrote:
k.linn wrote:We also do the annual ornament for each kid (so they can take their box to start their own tree as adults), and matching jammies.


Every year I buy ourselves an ornament and since we've had Hanna, I buy her one too. I also agree with giving them to her once she has a tree of her own. I'm curious though, do you just buy the one or do you buy two? I feel like I'm going to be sad when I have to give her our ornaments and our tree is naked. :laughing:
we buy a family ornament each year, too.
Kim: wife to Phil (07.01.06) and Mama to Audrey, Micah, Hadley, and Malachi.
[url
User avatar
k.linn
Level 15
Level 15
 
Posts: 5294
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:45 pm
Location: Wentzville
Wedding Date: Summer 2006


Disclaimer: The statements expressed in this forum are personal opinions and not necessarily those of the management of this board. Please remember that opinions are subjective, and your experience with any vendor or other entity may be different from the opinions you see listed here. View Terms of Use

Return to Life Goes On

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Majestic-12 [Bot] and 21 guests