Tonight is Christmas Eve. I love Christmas and I love sharing it with my wife and kids. So here is how our Christmas Celebration will most likely take place in the Distler household:
We will have our big meal of the day in the early afternoon at Olive Garden (my daughter's favorite restaurant)!
I will spend the late afternoon in at the church getting ready for our Christmas Eve services!
Our whole family will be part of all three of our Christmas Eve Services (5pm; 6:30pm; 8pm)!
We will go home and watch a Christmas movie (use to be "Ernest Saves Christmas" but now is "The Santa Clause")!
We will then open any gifts we received from non-family members!
We will then go through Nana's Stockings (my mom sends each of us a Christmas stocking filled with some of the most interesting items)!
We will start with the Santa gifts (I apologize if Santa doesn't come to all of your homes, but he does come to ours. My kids are 19 and 18 and he still comes every Christmas Eve and I suspect he always will)!
We will then go through our stockings from Santa (this takes a while as it is amazing how many little things can fit in a stocking and we go through them in "show and tell" fashion with each person taking a turn pulling one item out of the stocking at a time until they are all empty)!
We will then have our big breakfast (sausage gravy and biscuits with eggs and baked oatmeal - I will be taking this day off of my diet as a Christmas present to myself)!
After breakfast is cleaned up and we all have showered and dressed we will open gifts from relatives on my side of the family and then call each of them to say "thanks"!
After that we will open gifts from Laura's side of the family and call each of them as well!
After that we will relax a bit and then start working on our big dinner of the day (ham and scalloped potatoes...man, I love Christmas)!
After dinner is eaten and cleaned up, we will start opening the gifts from each other. (We focus on quantity more than we do quality so instead of one big and expensive gift we tend to have a lot of less expensive package's wrapped and ready to open and enjoy)!
After that we will be well into the evening and we will most likely enjoy another movie together!
Right before everyone is ready to call it a night, I will bring out what has become known as "The Last Gift of Christmas" (This is a tradition I started several years back. When the last package was opened someone would always say, "I hate it when it's over." So a few years back, without Laura and the kids knowing, I picked out something special for each of them, wrapped it, hid it, and then called them into the family room right before bed on Christmas night and surprised them with a "Last Gift of Christmas." The tradition has stuck and so tomorrow, our Christmas Day will come to an end when I give to each person in my family their "Last Gift of Christmas").