Christmas Eve was on Sunday so we all got up and went to church. The music was beautiful, but the talks were strange. One woman talked about the iron curtain and the other man just told his life story. It was an interesting life story, but didn’t have too much to do with Christmas or the birth of Christ. Oh well. I told the kids all I wanted for Christmas was a cute family picture on the porch after church. 2 out of 3 children obliged. There was nothing I could do to coax a smile out of the 3rd.
After a quick rest where we watched Miracle on 34th St, we drove up to SLC to see the Macy’s windows and to see the Giant Gingerbread house at Grand America. It was nice to get out of the house and move around a bit and kill some time on what feels like the longest day of the year to anyone under the age of 18.
We stopped at Temple Square for a few min and then took Trax to Grand America.
Now that we were sufficiently frozen, we headed back to Grandma and Grandpa’s house for Reindeer Games! I think two games stole the show: The Jingle Bell Jiggle, and Do You Want to Build a Snowman? We also loved teaching our family how to play JOY.
This year Grandma gave the kids each their own little Giving Manger with hay to make a soft bed for baby Jesus. The kids were excited and eager to think of gifts of service they could give to the baby Jesus. I didn’t get a pic of the mangers! Sad. We opened presents from our cousins. Halle got a pair of adorable beanie boo slippers, Josh got a cool coding robot, and Blake got a Ninja Panda Squishy. Then it was pajama mayhem! Nat and Michael had to get to the Bird’s for dinner so we didn’t get a pajama picture this year.
Our traditional dinner of ribs, rolls, and cheesy potatoes was next. Dan brought his delicious Lebkuchen, and Carlie made an awesome Pear, Pecan and Pomegranate salad. Then on to the talent show! Gwen performed her gymnastics tricks and the 3 Banks kids played the piano. Since Landon was in Panaca this year, Blake took his role and played the Star Wars theme song for everyone to enjoy.
Carlie and Dan and the girls and Cole headed home and we opened up Sibling gifts before scuttling the kids off to bed. Per usual, they all slept in the same room. It was surprisingly easy to get them settled into bed this year. And….when I snuck out later that night, I saw that Santa had come!