After All: 5 things

I’m disorganized today, the house all in a tip, disaster everywhere, and I’m working hard to pull it together for New Years. I tried pulling my thoughts together into one cohesive thing – but it wouldn’t go, so Five Things and a few pictures from the last few days it is.

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1. I heard someone complain the other day that Christmas is so much work for such a fast payoff… that it’s days and days of prep for just one day.  I thought about that, and I tried to sympathize, but really, around here, Christmas goes on, and on and on.  It’s really more of a season for this family. We had almost 20 gatherings of friends and families over the last month, and I like it just that way, I think.

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2. I am very tired.

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3. On Christmas Eve, we celebrated together at Joe’s sister’s place, and then came home, together as a family. The  ladies all spent the night here, sleeping in their old beds, and as parents, we wondered (over a good glass of whiskey after they were all tucked in) if there is ever a time that it stops feeling wonderfully right to have them all under our roof.

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4. On Christmas morning, we came downstairs and made coffee, and got the last bits together, and as is our tradition, the ladies waited at the top of the stairs for the green light to come down. They urged Ken and Joe and I to work faster, and giggled like maniacs while we got it all together. Joe walked around like he does every Chistmas morning, saying things like “Oh, it looks like Santa Claus came last night” to further peals of laughter.

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When we put the music on – that’s their signal, like it always has been, they came tearing down the stairs, and sat where they always do, and said what they always do, and at some point, as they all carried on the way they have for years and years, Joe and Ken and I realized that for all intents and purposes – that morning they were children again. Even though they’re all in their twenties, and Amanda is closer to thirty than she is twenty, it hadn’t occurred to a single one of them to come downstairs and get a coffee before the music played. Not one of them suggested sleeping at their own homes, not one of them said anything like “Hey, I’m a grownup now, this is a little silly.” They all fell right in line. It was…. delightful. I’m sure the year will come when one of them refuses to wait at the top of the stairs, or wants to stay up and have that glass of whiskey with us.. but this was not that year. I love that.

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5. All handknits were happily received this year but honourable mention goes to Pato, who was so delighted to receive his first pair of hand knit socks that he instagrammed them.

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There’s a good boy.

How did yours go?

99 thoughts on “After All: 5 things

  1. Mine was not as hectic as yours, but very pleasant just the same. I didn’t produce a single hand knitted gift, but then I’m not a fast knitter, by any means. But I did whip up two cushions for my daughter, as requested. Then an apron and double handed oven cloth for one grand-daughter, again requested, and must have horses all over them!

    Jenny from New Zealand

  2. Christmas came to your home, and it was wonderful as always, regardless of how done you were. That’s the way it should be. And the kids all under one roof? Feels like a mother hen with all the chicks under her wings. I love that, even when they’ve reached their 40’s. Happy end of the year!

  3. It sounds delightful, Steph! Ours was much quieter but equally happy, and I totally agree about how right it feels to have everyone here; wish our Midwest son and his family could have been here, too!

  4. I was in my mid-40s when I stopped spending Christmas Eve night with my parents. Up unitl then, on Christmas morning my sister and I would wait upstairs while my father turned on the tree lights and exclaim, “My goodness! It looks like a jolly old elf has been here!” Only then did we go downstairs. Glad to know we weren’t the only ones.

  5. As a twentysomething in the same position as your ladies, we don’t change the routine because it’s Not Done. This year my partner spent Christmas Eve and Christmas morning with us (we did supper with his family) and he laughed when I explained our own traditions (a gift of new pajamas on Christmas Eve, and you’re not allowed to open tree presents until everyone wakes up and comes downstairs on their own time) and that he needed to follow them.

    It’s How Things Are. Break tradition and it might as well not be Christmas at all. Especially celebrating at your parents’ house, where you grew up. You can’t break Christmas traditions any more than you could rearrange your parents’ furniture without their say-so.

  6. I’m so glad that this Christmas was healthier than the last one for you!! And keeping all the traditions is so much fun for everyone.

    Mine was lovely and low-key. I realized on the 24th that there was no way I could get ready so I abandoned all hope and just sat back and enjoyed what I had been able to do for my family. My granddaughter was 2.5 this Christmas, old enough to be an absolute joy to watch. I wish I could do all the trimmings the way I used to, but circumstances change… the most important thing is that wonderful joyful family time with my children doesn’t change.

  7. I am sincerely glad to see that your Christmas was so wonderfully full of family. I too had offspring at home on that day. Even the two with wives now. That is a total of 8 people under 30. Luckily my parents are used to the ensuing noise and minor chaos. Sadly my Texas son and his family couldn’t be here.
    May your new year be blessed by continued time with family!

  8. Merry Christmas and, if there were 16 gatherings over the last month, that probably explains why you are so tired.

    I guess if you have 3 it is different? Our only child, a son, slept in and we had to wake him up (as we have for several years) to come downstairs and unwrap the presents. However, he couldn’t wait to come home and was home for Christmas Eve.

    I was either at my parent’s home or my grandmother’s home for Christmas until I got married at 30. It just never occurred to me to take a long vacation and go somewhere else. Don’t the songs go “Home for the Holidays”?

  9. That sounds so lovely. My baby cut her first tooth on the 23rd and the second dying Christmas dinner. Since then both she and my toddler have had high fevers. Despite the staggering amount of time I’ve spent holding an unhappy child in the last week things have been pretty nice. We’ve gotten to see friends and family, and there has been gingerbread.

    I’m curious, what do you guys serve or Christmas dinner? You’re egetarians, right?

  10. Nothing more wonderful for parents than to have the “little” birdies safely tucked in and asleep in the nest, even if only (too) briefly.

  11. Cherish every single second. And even though it is exhausing, it’s a lot of work, you are so lucky to have such a large circle of special people. Thanks for sharing. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  12. OMG! I wish I could have 20 gatherings at Christmas. I LOVE that you do! What kind of pup is hanging out in Sam’s apron pocket?! I am a dog lover (but I like cats too!) and it looks like a mini doxie-mix. I knit wooly things for my 2 doxies. One loves it, and the other literally vomits with embarassment and shame when I put something on him. (Really. I put a sweater on him, and he hides and throws up.) He does love to lay on knitted things so there’s the comprimise! A Happy New Year to all!

  13. Will you adopt me?
    I’m older than all your daughters, but my family doesn’t really do Christmas.
    I try now with my own family to start new traditions, but my in laws aren’t really up for anything that doesn’t fit their square box. It’s fun, but it’s very commercial which I try to discourage (no no avail).
    I love how magical your holiday seems. How the whole family gathers. How it goes on for days. How it’s more about being with family then with how big a present you got.
    I’m lucky if I can get my family together for one meal.
    However everyone that I knit for this year was entirely thrilled (even if my hubby’s socks were too big, someday I”ll get them right, but he doesn’t mind/care)

    • Keep trying to create the Christmas you want, and you’ll get closer to it each year. You can have “your” Christmas on another day, even, to nourish your soul and teach your children how it could be. Have fun making alternate traditions.

  14. This year we had the whole family together for two meals. Well, we had all six adults for one meal and then all six adults and the two youngsters for the other meal.
    Far too much food was made and eaten. The youngsters made cookies for everyone (and are going to get a lesson on the proper way to make biscotti tomorrow) that were delicious!
    The older of the youngsters, at 15, played Santa this year and handed out presents. Her younger brother really wanted to do this job, but lost the wrestling match due to his much smaller size. We all warned her to be careful as it looks as if he will be well over six feet when he finishes growing, but you know what teenagers are like.
    I got a heated shawl that has helped my sore shoulder and allow me to knit more. My husband had definitely realised that I am a knitter. Of course, he now expects another knitted sweater.
    With the lovely snow (yesterday it was called something else) on the ground, the new year looks to be a joyous one.
    Happy New Year/ Bonne année to all!

  15. Ours was lovely. Black sheep brother of one of my sons in law showed up, and we were glad to have him, even when he hit on my adult granddaughter because he didn’t recognize her. She just smiled up at him and said, “I’m J & D’s daughter.” And he said, “Wait, what?” We are still chortling about that. My kids did not deluge me with stuff (I’m downsizing), but I got a modest amount of gorgeous yarn, and a gift card to Half Price Books (because books and yarn don’t go on the downsizing list). I’m eschewing the singles dance at church tomorrow night for some knitting, some coloring, and a stack of books.

  16. Steph, glad to hear that all went well. No wonder you are tired with all of your dinners, etc. We are only two people in this area. My husband’s sister and husband are 600 miles away. Best wishes for 2016 and for having such an awesome family and friends.

  17. The Christmas season is twelve days. That’s not just a song. It’s not a one-day event.
    My oldest is married and everyone went to midnight mass, so the routine has changed somewhat, but it is still a joy to have them all together.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  18. It never stops feeling wonderful to have your children under your roof at the same time. Mine are 32 and 33 and it doesn’t happen often, but it’s great.

  19. Thank you for sharing your Christmas with us. I graduated to adult status for Christmas morning at the age of 33 – the first year that I had a child of my own.

  20. It was my first without my mum (she passed 6 months earlier) and it was different, but i reminded myself- things change. There is an ebb and flow to life…this year especially. My first christmas married to my wonderful husband, but also very aware of mum not here. We found the joy- i have a family, not unlike yours from what i can see- full of wonderful people who “get” what you need , when you need it. Laughter, stories, tears, hugs and love were on the menu this year.

  21. It’s always wonderful to have grown children sleeping at home! That happens to me every Christmas and it makes me giddy with happiness!
    The 12 pairs of socks, the hats and mittens were duly appreciated but the 4 faux fur cowls I made really stole the show. My ladies think they look totally glamorous and they haven’t taken them off since Christmas! 😉
    I was spoiled, I got a whole lot of gorgeous angora yarn!!!
    I also got some great books. My daughter made me home made chocolate truffles and salted caramel and my mother gave me perfume.
    Although I’ve eaten far too much, all in all, it’s been perfect!
    Continue to enjoy the holidays, I know I will! 🙂

  22. Christmas is a season, not just a day, and so many times we forget that in all the commercial hype that leads up to it. I love the 12 days of Christmas and celebrating with friends and family whenever possible. Now that our children are grown and out of the area, I love planning for my husband and I, and I look forward to his pleasure and appreciation for the pair of hand knit socks that is now a regular item in his stocking each year. Blessings to you and your family, and thank you for sharing a bit of yourself with all us other maniacal knitters!

  23. This year we had two new boys at our Christmas celebrations – Toby who was born in May, and boyfriend long enough to come for Christmas Zach, who has been around a year or so now, and I suspect will be for awhile. Zach’s family doesn’t “do Christmas” so he felt a little awkward, but we just merrily included him, finding him a stocking of his own, taping his name to it, and filling it with all the things we always put in them. Toby was adorable and grew a new tooth – a noisy Christmas miracle. But yes, when they are grown, and they come back home, and they want all the things to be the way they always were, it is very heartening.

  24. This was a hard year, full of lots of big changes, and that carried over into Christmas. I struggled through it all, not realizing how much of a “traditionalist” I am. It’s not that I have to have things a certain way, but because I grew up with traditions, I fought hard to establish traditions while our own kids were growing up. These past few years, as they have graduated and gone off to college, and my own siblings begin to have children, things have changed in big ways surrounding our holiday celebrations, and it just felt like “too much change”. Especially this year, on top of everything else. The week of Christmas I finally came to grips with it being OK. That things change, and people change, and that at the end of the day, it’s who you spend your time with, and not how. Thank you for sharing your family with us Steph. Your girls have grown up before my eyes here on your blog (been a long time reader), and it gives me heart hope that in the midst of change, maybe some things CAN stay the same. <3 Happy New Year.

  25. Loved your post today.
    You all had a beautiful Christmas and you can see it from the photo’s. To cute Pato and his hand knit socks.
    The girls will always be kids at heart. I don’t think they’d want it any other way. After all that’s what is special about Christmas.
    May your New Year be filled with love, family & good times!

  26. Your post was such a joy to read. Christmas here in Iowa was lovely. Nine inches of snow meant snowshoeing this afternoon. I made a dangerous step forward today and created a Christmas knitting box for next year with a list of items needed to be knit and yarn needed to be bought. I’m anxious to see what happens.

  27. As far as I am concerned, the answer to #3 is no. Having all your children under one roof will never stop feeling wonderfully right. Though, sometimes it isn’t possible so thank goodness for Face Time. Let the holidays continue. Happy New Year!

    • Face Time saved the day this year, the first year my daughter couldn’t make it home. With Face time she could open “Secret Santa” presents with the family on Xmas Eve (I’ve started saving money to help her with the airfare next year!)

    • Yay for FaceTime! We were able to spend a virtual Christmas Eve with our new granddaughter, age 3-1/2 months, and see her “open””her presents. Makes it much more bearable to be about 800 miles away. Next year she’ll be here in person!

  28. Beautiful post, I could imagine your daughters waiting at the top of the stairs! Ours was a quiet Christmas but we were so happy to have my son home from college. He was content to be here for his short break so there was no trip to see my elderly parents this year. A sufficient number of siblings and family were present for them to enjoy the day as well. Every year is a bit different. Happy New Year.

  29. When my children are home I have such a restful night’s sleep. Four children ages 25 – 33. Even if only some of them are here it just feels “settled”.

  30. I knitted leaf ornaments for everybody (20) but left off the weaving in of ends and blocking for the last hours before driving home for my dad’s birthday on the 22nd. Then, you know, 10 horrible hours of driving made wonderful by my three kidult children singing, chatting, and playing games all the way.

  31. It’s just my husband and me (no kids). He sort of started a tradition just for us; I sneak out of bed first and put presents under the tree, and put stuff in the stockings. He sneaks out early in the morning, makes coffee, and turns on the tree lights. That’s the signal for me to come out and be oh! so surprised. We love it.

  32. Much vicarious pleasure was derived from your lovely description and pictures. My Christmas had some high points, but my knitting was a flop. Kind of a meh day. Better next year!!!

  33. Your festivities look delightfully warm & happy.
    No hand knits were completed here for Xmas this year – but wishes / needs were fulfilled. 🙂
    Our holiday was nice, too, but it was the first year one of our children was not with us for Christmas. Our 27 year old son made the very mature decision to stay in his new-ish home city because his girlfriend had to work (surgical tech- important work!). I was proud to learn he offered to cover call (IT tech) for a colleague with kids. It was bittersweet to celebrate without him but I loved that he made things merrier for someone else. And we will see him for his birthday in January, which helps.
    I’m so glad that, like you, we make the most of holidays together. It makes warm memories for the years it isn’t possible.

  34. As they say, All hearts come home for Christmas! I wasn’t really feeling like decorating the tree, but my daughter, age 26, working at an important job all the way on the other side of the continent, bought tickets to fly home for just 3 whole days, and I kicked it into gear, and she was so happy to come in and see the tree, and she was so happy opening her stocking and making the same food as always….yup, still my little girl, and still totally worth it to make Christmas for the people we love!

  35. Lovely post, yarnharlot! Traditions are marvelous and meaningful for my family, too. Best wishes for a wonderful new year to you and yours!

  36. This was the first Christmas in several years when all of my children were under my roof for Christmas morning. Even though they are 31, 29 and 25, it was the best gift a mother can have. Glad you got that gift as well. Best wishes for a wonderful 2016, I’ll see you at the Loopy Ewe in April!

  37. Both mine came home Christmas morning (drove 1 1/2 hours from Edmonton south to me) but yeah. Other than that — and the fact they left around 8 p.m. to go home because 1 had to work Boxing Day and they came together — it was…Hugs, bring in their gifts, stuff the stockings (Santa had stuffed theirs; they add to each other’s and to mine), open with giggles and guffaws and the exact same words as every year (even if it’s not at home) and then dinner, and a board game while we waited, and lots more laughter. Knitted gifts a resounding success, joy all around. Oh, and a request for a knitted skirt for DD who turns 35 in 2 weeks…Happy New Year!

  38. Are.. are those origami’d deer on your tree?!
    Holy pants, but that is seven kinds of awesome.

    No knitwear here either, but we had a nice, quiet Yule day all the same. Oatmeal in the morning, then presents, then playing with our new toys until the roast is out of the oven. Now, if I can just find a standing rib that hasn’t been trimmed into oblivion.. ^.~

  39. Thanks for sharing your holiday joy, StephanIe. I love vicariously celebrating with you and yours. Our celebrations are smaller and way less traditional, but as long as love is involved, we’re all doing it right.
    DS has sole custody of his little sons, but Other Grandpa is quite ill, so we made sure the littles spent Christmas Day with him, while we celebrated 12/23 because DD had to work 4 straight 12-plus-hour shifts at the hospital. Our Christmas dinner for five was at an Italian restaurant, and the leftovers came in handy the next two days. Would I love a big family Christmas? Sure. But that requires a big family — or at least not one scattered to Honolulu (bro and sil), Seattle (only nephew) and Oklahoma (favorite niece and her brood), among other places.
    Tradition is wonderful, but in our “family grove,” we’ve adapted to our current realities. The littles won’t remember which day they opened gifts this year, but Other Grandparents and Mama will.
    There will be other Christmas Days for other kinds of celebrating. I’m grateful fir grown kids who can go with the flow. Even when they’d rather have a “Hallmark” Christmas, they choose to focus on the joy of seeing the littles open gifts and play with them, not on which day that happens.
    From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, whenever someone gives me any kind of seasonal greeting, I reply, “Happy Holidays! All of them! Life is too short not to celebrate!”
    And that’s my greeting to Stephanie, her family and The Blog.

  40. Stephanie,
    Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas. Our kids are spread throughout the Midwest. So far we have had 2 Christmas celebrations and are leaving tomorrow for another one in Wisconsin.
    Have a wonderful New Year

  41. Those green socks are amazing!

    My babies are still babies, so we’re still working out what our traditions will be. I hope to have as beautiful a Christmas as yours when we’re all grown up

  42. Sounds lovely. Here too. You do way more than we do and seem to handle it! Just got the last hat done today–still in plenty of time before she goes back to college. It’s all good. Happy Christmas & Happy New Year!

  43. Sounds lovely. Our holiday was quiet. We were missing my beloved father who passed away last Christmas Day. But, time moves forward and so must we. My children were home, my mother spent a few days with us. It was good to be together. Hope you and your family have a wonderful New Year.

  44. Oh, so glad it has been a good holiday for you and yours! I can’t believe I just discovered your Instagram (searching for information and additional cuteness regarding the teeny canine, of course). Best are pics of your girls (poor kids, we all want to know how they are getting on – it’s like the blog is a neurotic great aunt) but I am pleased to see that the cat, so ignored and subtly maligned in your literary products, gets fairly substantial coverage.
    Happy New Year! Thanks for the knitting, laughs, and warmth this year.

  45. Years back my grown children and their spouses were spending a few nights with us. I went to bed and a bit later woke up to the sound of all of them talking and laughing. That was possibly the most beautiful thing I’ve ever heard.

  46. I spied a fox hat on the sofa behind the green socks. No photo of four foxes? (I get the feeling that more mature ladies are also more privacy conscious around the blog).

  47. Well, dang. I am jealous! And dang! I gave birth to 3 boys and now that two are up and married, the wives’ families seem to take precedence. The “baby” came by for a few hours with his young lady (her family doesn’t do Christmas), and she was thrilled with her stocking and our gift to her (a sewing machine)! I am thinking that next year my hubs and I head to a beautiful island for the holidays! Gotta change things up. Your “girls” are beautiful, Stephanie!

  48. First time one of my kids couldn’t make it home, but it was fine.
    You guys will appreciate this: we do the British tradition of the kids putting pillow cases at the end of their beds for Santa to fill. Santa only leaves a few gifts in those. We all gather in our room in the morning and they open those gifts. One of the gifts in the pillowcase was a hat I’d made. They all put their hats on upon opening them and left them on the entire morning. Made me feel great!

  49. That all sounds lovely but am I the only one saying – Pato’s been a part of your family for how long? And that’s his first pair of hand knitted socks?!?!

  50. Looks like you had an awesome Christmas. I,too, was lucky to have them all under one roof. And, by instinct, my husband and I sat where we normally sat as they all opened their gifts. The newest member of our family got his first pair of hand knit socks for his birthday a few weeks ago. His order is in for another pair. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  51. Hi! Glad to hear the knitting was a success, and well recieved (of course it was, your knitting always looks gorgeous!). So I have a question! I’m wondering what pattern you used for Pato’s socks? I really like it. Also, happy holidays, and all the best in 2016!

  52. Every Christmas Eve without fail we must sing Christmas Carols upstairs with the children while we wait for Santa to come. Then we all run down my my Grandma’s stairs and open our gifts. Then this year with my parents we go to see Star Wars, and my dad got his first ever pair of hand knit socks and did what I predicted, immediately removed his other pair of socks and put his new socks on, proudly showing them off – proclaiming proudly what his daughter (me) had made! Pretty good feeling!

  53. A quiet Christmas at home, with family, including THREE dogs and THREE cats to add to the fun. It was lovely. Traditions have changed over the years, but Santa came and ate the cookies and clementines, board games were played and cookies and chocolate abounded, and it was filled with love. and friendship, as it should be. Thanks for sharing your stories. Not just today, but all year ’round. Happy New Year to you, and your family.

  54. Being a firm believer that little children should spend Christmas at their own home (except for really little babies’ first Christmas, when anything goes), I spent Christmas Day with only my hubby, except that his daughter, SIL and 2 grands came for dinner — so we did have some kid energy that day. But I REALLY missed my own daughters and their families. Next year FOR SURE we will go to one family or the other so that we can spend Christmas with MY kids and grandsons. Being part of a blended family (five adult children between us, all married and with children of their own) makes Christmas really complicated, logistically and emotionally.

    One thing that no one has mentioned yet is the thrill that comes when you visit your daughter’s home for Christmas and see that she is following the traditions that you set up in her childhood — same cookie recipes, same dinner menu, same process for opening gifts. Now THAT’S gratifying!

  55. It seems to me that all the baking, knitting, decorating, all the prep is part of the holiday. The anticipation, the accomplishment, the sharing. If the actual celebration goes on a while that’s gravy.

  56. Sending all good blessings to you and yours as we reach the summit of 2015 and peer out over the landscape of 2016. Peaks, valleys, bends in the road, green meadows and probably a few arid deserts await…. but as long as we go hand in hand with those who are family and those who feel like family, we’ll embrace the year in all it’s wonders and challenges. I so look forward to seeing all that you may knit in the coming year… thanks for being one of my welcome anticipations. 🙂

  57. I don’t celebrate Christmas and never have, but this post made me a bit weepy because it had in it all the good things that family celebration should have and what I always hope mine will be.( am mostly successful with a few epic fails) I really don’t understand the pre-Christmas frenzy, but you are getting back what you give in spades!!! You warmed my cockles today which is a fine way to say good bye to 2015 and welcome 2016.

  58. From the mother of adult children, may I say that it is always a wonderful feeling when all the children are home at one time. The best feeling in the world!!

  59. As a 39-year-old daughter with a small child of my own, I have to say it’s nice sometimes to get to be the kid again at my parent’s house – good job, mom and dad and Ken!

    Happiest of New Years to you. = )

  60. Highlight of my Christmas was taking the 2 year old to lessons and carols with a living nativity… Lovely traditional music with a live baby and a German Shepherd costumed as a sheep. My son was transfixed, delighted, and therefore very well behaved. A Christmas miracle of our own!

  61. I started reading your blog maybe 2 years ago and this was my first Knitmas – one hand knit (ok two were crochet) item per person under my tree. Properly, i understood what i was giving even though the recipients may not have. I was ridiculously pleased with myself, 5 mittens and one pair socks. Several misshapen thumbs and the ginger cat ate the thumb off of my own pair of mittens.
    thank you for the year of inspiration – i find each post a gift of humor and grace. Happy new year

  62. Oh my gosh, is that Hank in the picture above the first one of Pato?? He’s so grown-up. Years ago he looked a great deal like my son; less so these days but it’s still pretty terrific to see him. I love your holiday posts. 🙂

  63. This Christmas was all haul tail and run. Dad and I put hundreds of miles on the Beastie, my old Dodge. We had fun though, and survived well.
    Stay warm via the wood stove and having a hot cuppa now. Take care,
    Louise B

  64. How wonderful.Absolutely wonderful.
    The sock pictures are great. And Pato just started tradition on instagram with hand created sox.
    Happy New Year!

  65. I adore your Christmas season. It is what Christmas should be: togetherness and joy. What a blessing! And no wonder you’re wiped out! ;o)

  66. Mass of Christmas Eve at midnight, cake, cookies, wine, beer when we got home at 3 am. Stayed up till just before 5 am, got up at 7am, cooked, cooked and cooked some more while laughing at the two 8 month old kittens and one unpotty trained dog run all over the house. The kittens were Christmas presents. They were not potty trained either. It was interesting to say the least. The next day (26th), football (college), beer, wine, cake and the lights went out. Card games came out and laughter ensued as we did not know the rules and we were sitting in the dark forgetting the lights were out.
    Kids got in their car at about 3pm and began the trip home. All in all, it was fun…except for the cleaning up after the cats. More on that at a later date.

    bjr

    • Love your blog. You are ever so ambitious, the best for 2016. I especially loved the post about the new baby born in your family. We are expecting 2 new grandchildren this year and we are feeling blessed.

  67. Much quieter! Finished the last pair of socks Christmas eve (not in a panic, just filling the last few minutes before bedtime peacefully weaving in the ends and blocking). Knits were enthusiastically received, food consumed and family members visited with. And then next day I cast on three new projects.

  68. I didn’t knit this year but I did manage to crochet a mermaid’s tail blanket for my little 6 year old in just 5 days. Talk about waiting til the last possible minute in planning!

  69. We experienced a similar nostalgia. Both our kids [25 and 18] at home and just the 4 of us celebrating together, perhaps for the last time, as our eldest will likely be in another city next year, studying for her psychiatric nursing degree. Family was far away, but we spent the day on the phone with them. We had a very Happy little Christmas, with a small turkey, all the trimmings, followed by a 6-hour marathon of Risk. Stuffed full of chocolate, we retired early and counted our blessings. If only these moments lasted longer.

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