Lucy and Alice were in a Christmas Eve concert at a local church. Lucy was in the Nativity play this year as a shepherd, and Alice was in the toddler choir.
Lucy's performance... you can hear Esme in the background starting to get fussy.
After the Christmas Eve service, we had a little family gathering at our house. It is our tradition every year to have cheese and charcuterie on Christmas Eve. This year, my parents were in town, and my brother and sister-in-law also came over with our nieces. Our house was loud and lively, and the excitement of all those little girls was so contagious!
After everyone left, Lucy and Alice hung up their stockings for Santa. We cuddled up on the couch and read The Polar Express and "The Night Before Christmas". Then we put two tired but very excited little girls to bed...
Hanging their stockings...
On Christmas morning, the girls did not wake up at dawn. In fact, the grownups had time to get a little coffee before we heard the pitter-patter of little feet on the stairs. Lucy and Alice came out and opened their stockings. Santa was very good to them this year!
After stockings, we sat down to our breakfast of warm cinnamon rolls and lit the Christ candle in our Advent wreath. When we had finished breakfast, the girls were ready to open their presents...
On Christmas Eve, Morgan surprised us all (including me) with matching PJ's. There was a pair for the whole family, including Baby Esme, so of course we had to document this:
I just realized Esme was missing one of her socks... poor third child!
After all the presents had been opened (and the wrapping paper cleaned up), it was time to start on Christmas dinner. While the older girls played with their new toys, the grown-ups were cooking and baking.
Except for my dad and Esme, who were napping. :)
Every year, it is our tradition to make a Buche de Noel, which is a French roll cake made to look like a Yule log. The recipe has been passed down in my family from generation to generation.
This year's Buche de Noel... and we are still enjoying the leftovers!
That afternoon, we went over to my brother's house for Christmas dinner. There was beef tenderloin and roast chicken and asparagus and mashed potatoes and hot, buttered rolls. And, of course, the buche for dessert.
Afterwards, we got the girls into their coats and said "goodnight". It was such a merry Christmas that Lucy and Alice (and the grownups) could barely keep their eyes open.