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Carter Crazy Christmas

Well, Christmas is always a big hit at our house.  Always a big hit.  Everyone always asks my kids if they are ready for Christmas.  Oh, yes!  They start getting ready on December 26th for the following year.  To say that they love Christmas is an understatement!  They adore everything about Christmas.  They love the food, the decorations, the family and friends, the giving of presents, the receiving of presents.  They love it All!

As a parent, I love watching them give and receive gifts.  I love watching their little faces and seeing the joy.  I love seeing them work on their presents to give to family.  We decided years ago to not buy presents for others but to make presents instead.  It means more to my kids to think, plan and make a present than to just walk into a store and buy one.  Plus, it gives us extra money to buy for a child or family in need.  This year Maylin made Christmas tree brownies for everyone and Maleah knitted dish cloths for everyone.  They both worked really hard on their gifts.  And being the block head that I am, I don’t have pictures of either of them handing out their gifts.  Silly me.  What was I thinking?  Oh, yeah, I must not have been thinking.

As much as I love seeing my girls give to others, I don’t always love the prep work that’s involved.  This year has been just a little more crazy than usual, so I was even less prepared.  I found myself scrambling the week before Christmas to get a few gifts that I had forgotten.  How could I forget them?  I don’t know the answer to that…..

I had written them done months ago and somehow I thought I had already bought them, but then I couldn’t find them when I went looking for them.  How in the world did I forget that Santa hadn’t bought Maleah a desk yet?  Hmm, where did I put that imaginary desk??  Oh, I must not have bought it yet.  Duh!!

So, in between scrubbing concrete floors on bruised and raw knees I had to arrange my schedule with Jim’s so he could watch the kids while I found those last few gifts.  Then I decided that since the floors would have to set for 48-72 hours after we sealed them, why not go ahead and seal as much as we could before Christmas?  Well, that added a whole new stress level!

In order to apply the sealer, I had to have the floors scrubbed and rinsed and completely dry.  Done.  Well, mostly done.  I couldn’t move all the stuff in the house onto the porch so I was only able to prep the bathroom, living room and kitchen floors.  The bedrooms would just have to wait until after Christmas.

I applied the first coat of sealer and waited an hour to apply the second coat.  Well, I hadn’t read the directions quite right.  Imagine that?  The floor was dry to the touch after an hour, but you were supposed to wait at least 4 hours before applying another coat of sealer.  That information would have been nice to know before I applied the first coat and planned the rest of my day around the sealing of floors.  Oh, well.  Let’s change the plan again.  Sure, why not.

I have to admit that the first coat on the floors looked pretty good.  I actually liked it a lot.  

The floors didn’t look perfect, which was fine with me.  I loved the different colors and imperfections.  

After reading the directions correctly, I called it a day and applied the 2 and 3 coats of sealer the next day.  The day before Christmas Eve.  Then, I had to rush home and get ready for Christmas.

I am really starting to like these floors.  

Yep, I’m a happy camper!  

I hadn’t wrapped a single present or made a single bite of food to eat for the 15 people coming to our house on Christmas day.  Time to play catch up!  And to give my pitifully abused knees a rest!

Nana comes on Christmas Eve to help make a gingerbread house with the kiddos…or a gingerbread barn in this case.  Is that not the most adorable little barn?!?!  The cow is my personal favorite.  The carrots are for Santa’s reindeer.  Apparently reindeer don’t like milk and gingerbread cookies.  Who knew???

Maylin left this sweet note for Santa.  How adorable!  She has such a big heart!

Christmas went great.  My kids were happy, so I was happy.  And family came that we don’t see much throughout the year, so that always makes Christmas extra special.

Maylin is in a unicorn/mermaid phase.  She loved these unicorn headbands!  They really are adorable. 

One of Maylin’s favorite gifts was this gigantic unicorn.  It’s bigger than she is!!!  Needless to say that Nana will require supervision next year when shopping for the kids.  Are you listening Nana???  I’m sure she’s ignoring me….  

One of Maylin’s other favorites was this magic fort kit.  Maylin loves making and inventing things so this gift will allow her creativity to flow (without tearing apart household items designated for other stuff).  Already she has made forts, castles, cars, airplanes, umbrellas, microphones, a horse, and a stage.  It’s a good thing Maylin likes to share because I kinda want a Magic Fort now!  (Please ignore the mess in that photo above.  That was the day after Christmas and house rules say that I have that day off from adulting.  So, NO CLEANING FOR ME and no making my kids clean either.  We will worry about that mess tomorrow when I begin acting like an adult again.  

Maleah loved her new make up case!  Now, she won’t have to carry her makeup in Ziploc bags anymore.   

She also loved her new desk.  Thank goodness Santa finally got it together and bought it!  It actually looks much nicer without all that stuff piled on it.  Again, the day after Christmas is no time for me to clean.  Tomorrow is another story….

Camden loved his new Hulk gloves!  He turned into quite the little handful with those on.  I didn’t realize he was quite that strong….  

He also loved his new superhero bed set.  Who knew a 3 year old would love sheets?  Well, it is superheroes, so I shouldn’t really be surprised. 

The girls got to make gingerbread houses again on Christmas day with Aunt Meeps.  They loved it!  Those are some cute houses ladies!

The day after Christmas we took another break from work.  The floors weren’t dry enough to walk on much and the dozer wasn’t fixed yet either.  Jim went to town to buy some fencing supplies and we had purchased 2 sheds for Desi and Minnie the Friday before Christmas.  We had managed to get a lot done the week before Christmas so we treated ourselves and our kids to a break.  Aunt Meeps came to play with the kids for the day and I tried to trouble shoot some computer issues with no success.  Computers + Me = Headache.  Some things never change….

The next few days involved a rotating schedule of applying coats of sealer to the floor and then going home to do housework.  After 4 hours I would go back and apply another coat of sealer.  It would have been lovely to have done the floors while the house was empty so I could have done all the floors at one time.  But it did not work out that way.  Everyone told us to do the floors last.  We listened.  But I think we made a mistake.  I think doing the floors just after the sheetrock would have been much easier.  Oh, well, the floors are all done now.

Finally!!   The floors are done.  I think they’re GREAT!  Let’s be honest here, nothing I do is likely to turn out perfect.  But I’m okay with that.  I actually like the imperfections in the floors.  Its gives it character and a rustic feel.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

I think the floors are beautiful.  And since we only spent about $80 total to clean and seal them, we can always change them later if we need to.  Or if the sealer is not completely up to the challenge of my tribe…well, let’s hope that doesn’t happen.  But if it does, then we haven’t lost that much money, I suppose.

So with the floors done, we decided to move on to fencing the week after Christmas.  Why not??  Well, the weather might have been laughing at us!  And I think the dozer was too!

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