Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas with the Jones', Burton's, & Parks'

December 15th, we had our annual Christmas party with the Jones', Burton's & Park's. The Jones' family and my family have been close for over 22 years, and it is SO much fun to get together once a year when all of us can be there! We used to meet twice each Christmas season, once to do gingerbread houses and once to do the gift exchange. As we have got older and started having kids, it's harder to get together multiple times, so we combine it all into one night! 

We started out the night with gingerbread houses. Suzanne makes all of the gingerbread from scratch and cuts it into the shapes for us to build the "house" and then my mom always makes the nativity scene out of white mint chocolate. The houses always looks the same for the most part, with the exception of how you do your roof and if you add windows or icicles. This year, Suzanne got the idea to use wheat thins for shingles. Usually we use frosted mini wheats {so it looks like snow}. I love how the wheat thins looked! 

Building the houses - Blake was the "carver" of the chocolate this year. As soon as it's done in the mold, he would pop each piece out and trim away the excess chocolate. 
This was the house the Jones' did - Annie made it! 
Another view of the Jones' house 
This was the house for my family that Lizzy did 
Our house, before I added the nativity scene! I didn't decorate the shingles like everyone else.
Another view of our house
Lizzy, me, Popper, Jake & Blake {Annie must have walked away before we took the picture}
After gingerbread houses, we had dinner! We had lasagna, spaghetti with amazing meatballs, 3 different kinds of salad and garlic bread, and better than anything cake for dessert! It was DELICIOUS!!! 

After we were finished eating, we opened presents! This year, there would have been 27 of us had everyone come. We were only missing Kaitlyn {on her way home from school at SUU} & Chad, Samantha's husband. Next year, if everyone comes, we should have 29 people, since Sam & I are both expecting! Crazy to think that when our families met, there was only 9 people. Our families sure have grown!!

Because there are so many people, I'm not going to post pictures of everyone's gifts. Just the ones for the Burton's {Cassie's family, my best friend} and what Jake & I got.

Cassie made an amazing blanket for Kaycee's car seat to swaddle her! It has openings for her seat so that we can wrap her and still make sure she is safely buckled! And it's pink :) 
We got Dagne a princess dress with a tiara & a little sparkly wand
Otto got a spider man wrist band that shoots little targets so he can be just like spider man
Asher got an angry birds lunch box!
Eric got the "O Brother Where Art Thou?" guitar sheet music
I got this SUPER cute sign with all of the reindeer's names on it, and then I also got a set of scrabble letters that spell out different holidays - Love, Luck, Home & Noel. There's also a little tray for the letters to sit on. Cassie MADE all of that! She is AMAZING at crafts! 
Cassie got Settlers of Catan!
Jake got Iron Man 3 on Blu Ray but had to leave before everyone else opened presents so he could get some sleep before work, so I didn't get a picture of it. It was such a fun night! I love the chance to get to see everyone from the Jones' family, and I LOVE how it feels like officially feels like Christmas time as soon as we have our big party!

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