Christmas was amazing! The littles and I slept on a giant air mattress in Lissa's room. They feel that they have to have a slumber party with me on Christmas Eve. I started this when they were teeny tiny as it gave me a way of making sure they could not hear "the elves" putting packages under the tree. My bedroom is farther from that general area. However, with Fiona spending the night, she was in my room. So we did this in Lissa's room and had just as much fun. All the kids have tiny trees in their room and hers is blue and awfully pretty.
The littles woke at 4:45 on Christmas morning, but I kept them in bed whispering with me till 6:10 a.m. (another reason we have the "slumber party." My wife would be singularly unamused by a 4:45 a.m. wake up! Then at 6:10 we all got up and did the stockings. Stockings are very fun in our house. There is very little edible and very little that is pricey but things are sort of quirky and unique. For instance, tiny little telescopes for playing pirate. Wooden tops. small collectable figurines. My wife found many of these items at a cool toy store on sale when she was doing holiday fairs with my Mom in November.
After stockings, we adjourned for breakfast. Long ago, in a smaller family dynamic, I just put yogurt on the table and oj and tea. Nowadays, it is more like a breakfast feast. There is yogurt, fresh fruit, oj and coffee and tea. There were eggs, veggie bacon, sauteed mushrooms and grits. And cinnamon buns. It is mandatory that I make cinnamon buns. I made two pans of them from scratch. By 11:00 a.m. when the grandparents arrived, there were enough for them to have with coffee and tea and that was it. They were all gone!
After fueling up, and starting the dishwasher, we went in and opened presents. My wife and I do our stockings and gifts Christmas night so it was just the kids. That way we could take pictures and just enjoy it. Most especially I enjoyed the fact that Fiona was with us and having such a good time. She really really enjoyed everything. She also had really been very thoughtful in the gifts she got people. KC got one of those fuzzy hats that have long scarfy things hanging down with built in mittens. He had wanted one when we were together at a fair this fall and I said no because the vendor was pricing them crazy high. Fi remembered and made sure he had one at Christmas. She got K and I a beautiful candle holder. Really stunning and destined to be the centerpiece at solstice dinner next year. She got Lissa a darling sweater vest with a leopard collar. Lissa is wearing it today and you can tell she knows she looks fine! Likewise, the kids had been equally thoughtful in choosing Fiona's gifts and she was sincerely excited about them.
By 8:30 we were cleaning up the detritus of opening and there was time to get dressed and relax and try out some toys. At 11 the grandparents arrived and another round of gifting ensued. I was proud of the kids as some of their gifts from them were not tangible--gifts that help others via heifer project. They were just as excited about having rabbits bought in their honor as if they got a toy. Cool!
More cleanup, visiting and eventually a big dinner. Not a fancy dinner, but a filling one. Big trays of pasta, a huge green salad, sparkling cider for kids, wine for grown folks, and cheese cake, Fiona's birthday cake, cookies,pie or poached pears for dessert.
Fiona could not believe she was having a birthday party as well. She was gracious and calm throughout and seemed again to like all our choices. At the 11th hour I found out that her new residence will not allow her to have her cell phone. Chet had bought her a cover for that and I thought the gift now rendered inappropriate and potentially painful. So we swapped it out for an extra gift that I had really bought for an aunt. Easy enough to replace that one later and Fiona was none the wiser.
By 2:30 my mom and G were back on the road and the kids and i hung out and played the rest of the day. Sometimes they used KC's new microphone and either did stand up comedy (which was dubiously funny but mostly funny in that they THOUGHT it was funny) or Fiona would sing along to some of her new CD's. They played new wii games and tried out KC's marker maker.
We also got to talk with Krystal and wish her merry Christmas. She was en route to a movie so she did not talk too long but Christmas night she asked Rob to call her back and they talked much longer. I am glad that connection is strengthening. Rob and Krystal were very close as young kids and when she moved down south it was a huge blow to him.
At 5, staff came to take Fiona back to her new home. I hope she settled in well. I will call tomorrow to see. I think maybe calling tonight might be too much too soon. Not for Fiona, but for the staff who are not the easiest folks in the world to deal with. I don't want to do anything that rocks the boat while I await the final guardianship stuff going through.