With the colder weather settling in, we had a burst of sunshine when Ms. Michelle came to visit from Florida. We shared a lasagna dinner and caught up on the latest events. She insisted Cam wear her reindeer headband for our group picture. Michelle gave her buddy a fingerprinting kit to use with all of his detective police work and added a new ornament to our tree.
For more than 30 years, Jane's extended family of cousins, aunts and uncles has gathered together around the holidays to share a potluck meal, good cheer, and a visit from Santa Claus for all of the younger kids. The celebration is a traditional festive event and one we look forward to every year.
A couple of Cam's cousins noted after seeing Santa at that mall this year that "He's not the real Santa. The real Santa comes to Cam's house." Since we didn't have enough snow for sledding, the party stayed inside this year. Families came from as far as Johannesburg, South Africa and as near as a few miles away.
Just as it begins to get dark outside and when the kids are playing downstairs, sleigh bells can be heard. That's the cue for all children to come upstairs and wait for Santa. Since it's after Christmas, he comes through the front door.
Each baby, child and pre-teen receives 2 presents each from Santa.
The time together also gave us an opportunity to surprise Oma with a Ryke's cake for her big December birthday. The edible frosting was decorated with a picture from her 16th birthday as well as one taken in September. The writing on the delicious dessert read "Happy Birthday Mom/Oma. A beauty at every age!" Although everyone was gone by 9pm, the happy memories and smiles stuck around. And so did Oma and Opa and our thankfulness for their extra help.
|A yearly tradition for |
Cam & Emma - decorating
the gingerbread house, this year with
Miss Amanda's help :)
Cam and Jane gave Chris a table saw for Christmas as a big surprise. He had no idea we were getting it and it weighed so much (250lbs) it had to stay in the back of Opa's car for its unveiling. Cam was in the garage helping Chris set it up.
"Cam- this is a really cool present. I still can't believe you and Mom got it for me."
Only the best for you, Dad!