Christmas Day 2014

 Christmas day is such a fun thing with little ones in our life! Their anticipation and excitement runs sky high every year and therefore so does ours.  I love how they ponder which presents they might receive, what their stockings will hold and how much longer until the sun comes up??  
 Not surprising, these two were up and raring to go at the crack of dawn!  They were thrilled to see the sea of presents on the fireplace and immediately began sizing up their stack.  They had to wait for the whole house to wake up and for the Knapps to come over, but they were as patient as they possibly could be.  I loved that they matched all the presents in their new jammies! 
 Walker was up shortly after and therefore the night was officially over for Trav and I, too. That's ok, this might be the one morning a year that we are very ready and willing to get right up!  
It's your first Christmas, Walkie!  Are you excited???  
I think his expression here says it all, right? 
He's clearly thrilled  :) :) :) 
 I do love (and remember) the stillness of an early Christmas morning and the anticipation of of all that lies ahead.  When we were kids, we used to get up super early, drag our parents out of bed to open presents and then shortly after we'd have to start packing and load our car up so that we could drive to Minnesota and be with family for dinner that night.  It was fun as a kid, but as a Mom now, I have no idea how my parents found the energy to do that!  Christmas morning is such a whirlwind of activity, I can't imagine adding the stress of a road trip too.  I was very thankful we already crossed that part of our to-do list!
 It was so great to have the whole day ahead of us with no one coming over, just a day to relax and enjoy and stay in our jammies if we wanted to.  
 And we did want to do that!
 It wasn't too long before our kids had Stacie and Jesse out of bed and Grammy and Grampy too.  
Walkie was loving his toys while we waited for the Knapps and while the monkey bread in the oven filled our house with delicious smells of cinnamon and sugar! A Christmas morning tradition. 
 These two got in a little morning study time and some breakfast while we waited...
 ...and then before we knew it, it was time to dig in! 
 Although I would have preferred these two take turns opening gifts so we could enjoy watching them, they had a different idea of fun and they basically tore into one gift after another! 
 It was all I could do to keep up!  
 Ava striking a pose in her new scarf  :) 

 They barely looked up to take a breath! 

 The babies were a little more civilized about their excitement! 
It was so funny to contrast their laid back, chill demeanors with Ava and Carter's!  
 They may have been chill this year, but they definitely won't be like that for the years to come! 
 Why not chew on envelops and clothing tags? 
 Our annual sibling pic. Glad we decided on those last minute Christmas pants!  Ha ha! They were festive and apparently "red" is the unspoken theme of 2014! 
Love these peeps and every chance we have to be together.  I'm so thankful we enjoy each other and have fun together.  God was good to us when he gave us girls our husbands AND when we realized they all like to be together.  Such a blessing! 

I'm blaming my sporadic picture taking this year and the missing pics of my parents and most of the adults on the fact that I was desperately trying to keep up with the kids!  Grampy and Grammy were there, feeding us, taking it all in and letting us take over their house with lots of laugher and chaos and fun! 
We had such a nice, low key day with my family and it was wonderfully relaxing.  My Mom treated us to so many delicious meals and Christmas dinner was no exception. We were totally spoiled all break with way too many treats and snacks, in addition to meal after meal.  It's been a sad dose of reality to resume kitchen duties since we've been home again! I enjoyed the break so much! 

I love showering our kids with a few gifts that delight them and I'm thankful for the resources to do that, but I was also very thankful this year for the unbelievable gifts the Lord has given Travis and I.  We have so much to be grateful for, and these three are near the top of that list!  I'm so grateful that Jesus came down from Heaven to rescue us, that He chose to lay His life down for us and that He's made a way for us to spend Eternity with Him too.  Everything else pales in comparison to that, but He's graced us with our marriage, our children, our families, our friends, our church, and so much more.  It's so fun to give at Christmas, but it's important to remember how much we've been given and what we've truly received because Jesus was born!  This was a fun year to cherish with 2 new babies and the gift of time spent with each other.  
My heart is full just remembering and looking back at our pictures.  

Merry Christmas from the Armstrongs! 

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