Now that the dust is settling . . .

We had a lovely, chaotic, peaceful, decadent, thoroughly exhausting Christmas, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Oh the stories I could tell . . . but I will refrain.

Santa was certainly good to us this year, but most of all I am thankful for good health and family togetherness. All 22 members of my husband’s family, ages 6 to 76, were present and accounted for at our home yesterday. What a tremendous blessing! I don’t know how many families can say that these days.

I’m still recovering, however, as you well know, I can’t leave the blog alone for long, so I thought I’d give a little Christmas Wrap-Up in Pictures!

We tried desperately to get a good picture of the kids on Christmas Eve, but this was the best shot of them all. How pathetic is that?

And there’s this. She lost her third tooth last week.

Don’t ask about the purple necklace. It wasn’t a hill I was willing to die on.

Christmas morning dawned bright and early — for me, anyway. I was up at least an hour before anyone else. It was DIVINE.

I puttered. I made coffee. I took pictures of all my christmas decorations. I started mixing up the batter for the gluten-free cinnamon buns I would make later in the morning. I puttered some more. Finally everyone was awake and ready to come downstairs.

They wasted no time ripping into their “Santa gifts” and stockings.

We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, in which I served Donielle’s cinnamon buns and Kelly’s quick quiche cups — DELISH.

Then it was off to church where we celebrated the Lord’s Day AND Christmas Day. I always think those years where Christmas falls on a Sunday are particularly special, even though they do put a bit of a kink in our traditional Christmas Day schedule. It worked out just fine, though, because we weren’t planning Christmas dinner till closer to 6:00, so we had plenty of time to come home, grab a snack, and open presents before it was time to start dinner prep.

I racked up the running gear this year.

I also got a gorgeous silver bracelet and perfume I’ve been wanting. Sadly, there are no pictures. Boo.

The kids were delighted with their loot. And I surprised my husband (or maybe he wasn’t so surprised as much as he was pleased!) with a 12-string acoustic guitar he’d been wanting. We had a festive dinner and a great visit with family before all falling into bed in a food coma.

Yesterday was all about the family gathering, complete with brunch and dogs and veggie bacon and a rousing Yankee Swap. (Don’t ask.)

And today we’re in recovery mode.

So. How about YOU!? How was your Christmas? I hope it was full of love and laughter (and pork bacon!)