It was a total treat to have Carlos with us on Christmas Eve. He and Jan Michael spent most of the day playing mad scientists, doing things like building a volcano with baking soda and vinegar and blue food coloring (blue lava is lots neater than red, for real!) and making a hovercraft with an old CD and a balloon. Between experiments, he and I sat ourselves down with a mountain of frosting and sprinkles, decorating cookies for his Mom, who was working and wasn't able to join us.
Brent worked most of the day, too, but was able to be with us for an enormous (and delicious!) dinner. (And for the record, I am a staunch protester of people having to work on holidays. And for a second record, I protest people having to work on Christmas Eve, too.)
Then, Christmas Day!
My Mama and I are in complete agreement that one of the sweetest memories we'll carry with us from this Christmas was watching Dad and Jan Michael carry on our Oma's tradition of making strudels. Oma would have been 106 that day; we very fondly toasted her at dinner :)
They floured and oiled and stretched and rolled and in the end, made enough for an army.
Our family needs enough for an army. We take strudel eating very seriously.
And then there was more cookie decorating...
And potato peeling (strudels without potatoes is a travesty)...
And I shirked kitchen duty by running around all over the place with the camera, but I did manage to take a minute out of my busy schedule for this:
I have a husband who continually outdoes himself in the gift-giving arena, as proven by our matching pajama pants. The hills were alive with my happy shrieking when I opened them up, and we've decided one of the secrets to a long and happy marriage is pretending to be superheroes together :)
And just like that, another merry, merry Christmas has been written on our hearts.