We ended up having a wonderful Christmas this/last year despite all the stress from the house that had been going on for weeks leading up to it.
Christmas Eve Dan worked until 1 and then came home to get ready for Christmas at my dad's which we do every year on Christmas Eve. He was suddenly very excited and very "in the spirit of Christmas" like he usually is but hadn't been much this year. I was feeling pretty down and not really into Christmas at all since we had absolutely zero decorations up (not even a tree), and hadn't really been thinking or focusing on Christmas since we were putting so much time and energy into buying our house. I spent about 4 or 5 hours Christmas Eve morning cleaning out our fridge we'd bought off Craigslist the night before, and just wasn't in the Christmas Spirit. Let me explain a little further why I was feeling so down...
About a month before Christmas, when we were scheduled to close on our house on December 15th, we agreed that since there was so many things going on (Dan's brother was getting married on the 17th and there were many festivities to go along with that) and realistically knowing it might be a day or two later (not a week and a half!), we agreed our first night we'd sleep in our new house would be Christmas Eve. We would set up a few decorations, including our smaller size tree and stockings, and would wake up on Christmas morning in our new home which was the ultimate Christmas gift. So, on Christmas Eve, when I was sitting in the garage of our rental, cleaning out a fridge, knowing we wouldn't even have the keys to the new house until Monday at the earliest and 3/4 of our house was packed in boxes, I was definitely disappointed.
Dan loves Christmas, and frankly so do I. It's our favorite holiday and we love that time of year. Dan turns into a little kid the day after Thanksgiving when we put up all the decorations. He loves looking at the Christmas sections at all the stores throughout December. But this year, none of that happened. Which honestly, looking back on it wasn't THAT big of a deal, but at the time it really was. I didn't really feel like celebrating anything.
I made kind of a big deal about not going anywhere Christmas morning (which this year was the first year we didn't spend Christmas morning at someone's house) because I wanted to start the tradition/habit of having our own Christmas together at home first before going out celebrating and visiting family. I didn't have anything major planned, just opening a few small gifts and having a hot breakfast together in what I thought would be our new home. When none of this panned out, again I was a little disappointed. But I tried to just get over it and enjoy Christmas Eve as much as I could.
We went to my dad's for dinner and gifts around 6 on Christmas Eve. Had a wonderful Christmas dinner as usual, and then sat around the tree and opened gifts. We received a lot of great things and were so grateful for them. We returned home that night, and I was in a slightly better mood and a little more in the Christmas spirit. By this point I was trying to just let everything else go and not worry about it anymore because I didn't want to bring Dan down too. We went to bed that night in anticipation and excitement for the next day and the time we'd get to spend with our families.
Christmas morning we woke up around 7 and laid in bed awake for about 30 minutes. It seemed as though Dan was trying to stall for some reason, but I couldn't be sure. Suddenly around 7:30, Christmas music started playing from the kitchen/living room area of the house. We got up and came out of our room, and this is what I found...
My sweet husband knew how much I just wanted a little bit of a normal Christmas at home, got up in the middle of the night after I'd fallen asleep, and set up our smaller size tree, put lights on it, got out our stockings and a few decorations so we could have a little Christmas at home, just like I'd wanted. It brought tears to my eyes when I came out to find all of this. I was so surprised! This shows just how wonderful of a husband I have.
We sat and exchanged the few things we had for each other, and then had our hot breakfast at home.
We got ready and then went about our usual Christmas Day festivites with our families. My mom's was first, like usual. We had a wonderful lunch and opened gifts. We were so blessed this Christmas, as we didn't ask for much and still received so many gifts of things we needed. 3 or 4 Home Depot gift cards that we could use for the small things we needed for our new house, Dan got a gift card to JCPenney to help him pay for a new suit for church. (He's been wearing the same one since his mission...It's dirty, well worn, and now is finally getting too small) I also got an entire bag of stuff for the baby from my grandparents. Diapers, wipes, bottles, pacifiers, clothes, etc. You name it, it was probably in there. We were overwhelmed with gifts and were so very thankful.
After my mom's, we headed over to Dan's grandma's house where we were to do our Christmas trivia with his family. Every year my dad does Thanksgiving and Christmas trivia and it always is so hilarious and fun, so we thought we'd do that this year as a fun way to distribute our gifts to everyone in his family.
As expected, Christmas trivia was a hit. Everyone enjoyed it, and there were many laughs shared. We sat out back and drank some Kool-Aid while playing darts. It was a great way to relax and enjoy the weather and each other.
After finishing up with his grandma, we returned to his parents house to pick up some gifts from them and of course play a few games. Dan's brother Jared and his new wife Amber gave us the game Pictionary Man, which we played right away. By the end of the game, I was laughing harder than I can remember laughing in a very long time. It was a great way to end a busy and emotional weekend.
Overall it was a wonderful holiday spent with our families that we love and appreciate so much. Everything worked out, as it always does, and now this years' Christmas will not only be our little boy's first Christmas, but our first Christmas in our new house too! We can't wait!