Which was yesteday, of course :) The Twelve Days of Christmas song refers to the 12 days -after- Christmas. Just in case you were wondering.
The gingerbread house has been decimated. I suppose razed would be more accurate. However you figure, it's in a shambled pile of odd corners and lefover candy. While opening gifts, we munched on gingerbread trees and sipped hot cocoa. Thank goodness for air conditioning.
The kids were thrilled with all their gifts. Most were group items, like legos, magentix, and puppets. But there were plenty of small individual items too. The girls both received t-shirts that say "I solemnly swear I am up to no good" while the back has "Mischief Managed" which I admit was entirely my doing. The Lego Chess set has received the most attention from the boys, while the movies ("Sahara" and "National Treasure") were a hit with the girls. But like I said, everything was well-received. I look forward to seeing them use the books, games and toys over the coming months.
I did well for Ian this year. A new pen, a new gadget, a 007 movie poster calendar and a new bed pillow. For me, my grandma hand-crocheted a table runner for our home, and Ian got me a shirt with "4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42". Fifty points to the ones who know why.
The best part of this holiday is watching the kids prep their gifts for each other (and for us). The entire past week was filled with activity as they raided their toy chests or busily created gifts for one another. Art books were scrutinized, materials gathered and many a door was shut. And then the sweet anticipation as siblings watched their gifts opened. Not once did Rebecca wonder aloud what she would receive, but repeatedly she said how she had a gift for -everyone- and how she really hoped they would like them. The kids all collaborated on their gift for me, a bar of dark chocolate and a box of cherry liqueur chocolates. Oh yeah, they've got me pegged! But between them, they exchanged a spy notebook (Katherine to Nicholas), secret keeping box (Katherine to Rebecca), homemade airplane (Rebecca to Nicholas), plush airplane (Rebecca to Jonathon), stampers (Nicholas to Katherine) and more.
The kids and their joy of giving add the true sparkle to this holiday.