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Christmas Eve at the McIlroy's

Christmas Eve was a day filled with fun, giggling, and excitement.  We woke up extra early so I could watch Brody while Aunt Sharon and Grandma went to work.  Gabby and Emma played upstairs all morning occasionally allowing Brody to join in the fun.  Then, we helped them make gingerbread houses, which they all made with very little help and all turned out great.  After they finished their gingerbread houses, we bundled up, and headed to Chick-Fil-A.  The kids played for over an hour while Michael, Grandpa, and I visited and watched the kids play. 

Brody's on the left and Gabby's on the right

Emma's gingerbread house
Once we arrived home Grandma and Aunt Sharon were home from work and there was more playing (of course).  Then  it was time to get dressed for church.  The service was wonderful, Gabby and Emma loved it! They got to sit up front for a part of the service and watch children do a play and sing songs.  The service celebrating Jesus’ birth ended by everyone lighting a candle (yes, even Gabby and Brody) and singing “Holy Night.”  The candles were a big hit!

On the way out of church there were bags of candy to give to service men and women working during this holiday season.  Emma asked if her and Gabby could each take a bag.  So we took two bags and stopped by the local fire station to drop their bags of goodies off.  Gabby and Emma were excited to thank the fireman for their service and hand them their bags.  However, once back in the truck Gabby began to cry because she wanted the bag of goodies.

Once back home we had a lovely family dinner.  Then the children went outside and sprinkled reindeer food throughout the back yard.  Then their busy night continued making s’mores for dessert and getting dressed for bed.  Michael and spent all day converting VHS tapes to digital files.  We gathered around to watch the compilation of interviews of Daddy, Aunt Sharon, and Uncle Mark each Christmas Eve.  We all laughed at the way the acted and the things they said.  To continue the tradition we interviewed, Gabby (which took two tries because she had a little tantrum), Brody and Emma.  Finally, the overly tired children put out milk and cookies for Santa, Gabby kissed her hand and put love on each cookie before heading to bead in anticipation of Christmas morning.

Feeding Santa's reindeer with their magical reindeer food
The bag Grandma made to hold the reindeer food

The kids with Santa's milk and cookies

Kissing each cover to make sure they are full of love for Santa
We read Gabby “The Night Before Christmas” and a story of Jesus’ birth before tucking Gabby in to dream about Sugarplum fairies and the celebration to come in the morning.  


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