***Merry Christmas***

After our family attended a candlelight service at church yesterday evening and enjoyed dinner together, we all settled in for the night.  Here's what our family will awaken to today ~ this Christmas day.  A simple but peaceful setting in our living room, is where all the activity will begin.  My sons requested a real tree this year ~ one filled with all of our sentimental ornaments that have been made or collected over the years.  It's nothing like the funky ladder tree we had last year (if you are interested, you can see it here) but it's so charming and smells so Christmassy. 

Felt stockings, I've sewn over the years, hang from the mantle.  They're nothing fancy by any means, but were made with a lot of heart and the boys are quite attached to them ~ favoring them over something I might purchase at a store.  Penny ~ our American Bulldog, still doesn't have one of her own ~ hopefully she will by next Christmas.  

We will linger here for a couple of hours ~ with Christmas music blaring (courtesy of Pandora) from a nearby room.  My favorite channel this year has been Tony Bennett ~ holiday.  It offers up a delightful mix.

And as you might suspect, there'll be lots of laughing, sharing, opening of presents, picture taking and memory making.  

When all the opening of gifts is over and done with, Nate and I will move into the kitchen to start whipping up our traditional Christmas breakfast of whole wheat, chocolate chip, peanut butter pancakes.  My mouth is watering already ~ just thinking of them slathered in butter and puddled in a plate of maple syrup.  They are so yummy ~ I most certainly should share the recipe with you someday.

Then most likely, we will sit around the table for awhile longer and reminisce about Christmases past and Nana and Papa and life as it is today.

Christmas Eve dinner with Nate, Corbin, Reagan and Gavin
It's days like this, with us all together as a family, I feel especially blessed and I'm thankful.  And I realize all over again, the most simplest things in life are often the most meaningful and treasured. 

I hope today is filled with good things for you and yours as well~ blessings and peace to you this Christmas day ~ Merry Christmas!!!  XO ~ Dana