I couldn't decide which photo to use - the dark or light one - so decided to use both.
That's Annabelle's ashes there in that white box (she died a year ago), with her photo in front of it. Toby's under there, too, (he died two years ago). Yes, I realize that that's a wierd thing to do!
This is Eva Jean taking a nap with Annabelle. She likes to scratch her face on the branches. We don't have presents under the tree because of year old Oliver the chihuahua.
We bought this simple manger thirty-six years ago when we were poor, and have just never 'upgraded'. When Garrett was two, he lined up his cars in front of it, on the brown part. I keep telling Conner that I don't think they had pine trees like this in Bethlehem, but he thinks they should be there anyway!
This is our Christmas Village, of all different sizes because we mixed and matched! The boys don't care, and one of the first things we do each Christmas is get this out and set it up, the boys on a stool and shuffling everything around til it looks just right. I think we have a tradition started with this! Mawmaw gets to decide where the buildings go, but everything else can be arranged and rearranged as each boy sees fit, as many times as they want.
I'm real proud of these four stamped wooden ornaments. I painted them about twenty years ago, and the exciting thing is that I'm not in the least bit artistic. Most importantly, I can give each boy a set of two for their own trees when they're adults.
Garrett and Pawpaw relaxing. That's a lap drawing set from the Dollar Store that Garrett got for Christmas because drawing is his passion right now.
I have no idea why Conner has underwear on his head. This was before Christmas, but I don't remember what led up to it.
Oliver helping the boys with their new Hot Wheels race track.
Mawmaw and Conner with their antlers on.
Garrett bought me this cute little kitten in a cup at the school Santa Shop, and was so proud of himself! The cat looks like one of ours that died in 2008.
All three dogs had a stocking , but only Oliver was willing to pull one of the toys out. If you look toward his feet, you'll see that it's a silly looking bird.
Well, there are a lot more, but I won't make you look at them all since you've got your own to sort through!
I have a bit of a secret ... I don't remember any of my Christmas' before I had my daughter. I've been told about and have seen in a photo or two that I spent Christmas Eve at the country club with my adoptive mother, grandparents, aunt and cousins Nancy and Marylin when I was little. But I.do.not.remember. Any of them. Any Christmas' or trees with my adoptive mother. Any Christmas's with my adoptive dad and step-mother. I have no memories. Even when I look at the few photos I have of a few of them (and I mean a few - maybe two or three photos). So the holidays spent raising our daughter, and now ones spent with my grandsons, are so special to me. I go over the photos again and again each year, imprinting them on my memory so that I never ever forget another one.
I hope you had a good Christmas, and that all of us see a good new year.
(p.s. Astute viewers will notice that the background where the television is has changed ... we originally had an old table with leafs that had speakers on them, and then we had the chance to receive some free glass shelf units that give me much more horizontal space in our small living room.)
(p.p.s. I've had the plural of Christmas spelled three ways now! What in the world is the correct way?)