Growing up, I had the pleasure of having an american Christmas when we lived close to my grandmother, and a german Christmas during all of the other years.  Today was a special day, because I introduced the american tradition of waking up to a room full of presents for the first time to my children.  It was so relaxing to have Christmas Eve to ourselves, and the time to finish last minute details like a plate with cookie crumbs, an empty milk glass, and filling the stockings.  I went to bed late but full of excitement, knowing that Nicolas would wake bright and early and come running into our room.  Hubby usually works late on Christmas Eve, and in Germany the stores always closed at noon.    

The kids actually let us sleep a bit longer then I thought, and Olivia slept even longer.  I finally nudged her to get up, and she was full of awe at the beautifully lit Christmas Tree and the abundance of presents that were suddenly crowding the tree.  She immediately saw the baby pram and the two dolls Oma bought her, and wanted to push it around.  Nicolas was so excited, and opened up all his gifts before I could even turn around, disappointed in the end when he realized that there were no more gifts for him.  That’s a five year old boy for you.  Olivia did not want to open anything, so I let Nicolas open all the gifts.  Happy, pleased and forever thankful for what Santa Claus brought us this year.  Thank goodness, the bug has finally left our house, and the kids even got to eat a cookie. 

dsc02539_1836_edited-1

The american tradition will probably not stay with us for very long, because I missed the formality of our german traditions.  I like to have the kids all dressed up, and pretty for pictures.  Although the pajamas were adorable, I did not feel like using the camera much.  I like having a drink, and going at it slowly.  I like lighting all the candles, and sitting there with my husband alone after the kids go to bed, contemplating what they will play with in the morning.  I like ringing the bells and tricking the kids into believing that St. Nicholas was just there.  I guess I should consider myself lucky that I have had the chance to experience two cultures, and I get to choose which one I like best.  I do.  Now if only I could magically make my family live next door or close by, so we can have a really great Christmas.  That would make every kind of Christmas great.   Here is a lovely picture of my sister and her family.  She had Sophia wear the Christmas dress I sold in my Etsy shop.

img_9995img_9943

I hope everyone is having a very Merry Christmas, enjoying their family and friends, and got exactly what they wished for.  I had hoped for a Coverpro 9000, snow and some clothing.  I got exactly what I wished for and then some.  It is 75 degrees here, so I guess snow is out of the question.  But that’s ok.  The kids, and myself are happy and healthy.