We picked up Buddy and headed to my dad's in Monmouth at around 1PM.
Man, having a "little" kid around sure makes the presents grow!
One tradition we have is to take a yearly photo around the tree. I knew times would be "tight" with a youngster around and I wouldn't have a lot of opportunity to figure out dad's camera, so I practiced on Travis and I.
Not the most flattering of either of us, but a tradition is a tradition.
Good thing we got a picture of us though, because I forgot to get a "whole family" shot.
Mom, Dad, Travis and I spent the early afternoon playing "Are you smarter than a 5th Grader" on the TV. Travis and I were black balled by Jeff Foxworthy because we asked for help on a 2nd grade music question. Mom and Dad thought that was funnier than anything. Dad was actually wiping tears from his eyes. It was good to see my mom and dad laugh like that!
Justin, Stormie, and Rhylee came a little after 4. Rhylee had already had 3 Christmas' that day and was tuckered out, so Buddy, Rhylee and I watched Cars in Justin's room (hoping for a nap)
I think Buddy and I were the ones who dozed off!
Before dinner, a "Vancil" tradition is to open up our stockings. This is a result of always opening 1 gift on Christmas eve. Now that we are all grown up and out of the house, we aren't there on Christmas eve, so to compensate, we drawl the Christmas presents out as long as we can. Thus, opening stockings first gives us some presents and we save the "tree" gifts until after dinner.
We always eat dinner in the dining room, and this year I think we may have started a new tradition (Travis says, "he's hoping so") This year dad fixed a prime rib for Christmas dinner. No one in the family had ever cooked one from scratch. This is a bit odd seeing how Justin was a chef, mom loves to cook, and dad loves meat, but no one had prepared a prime rib. Let me just say, I'm not a huge meat eater anymore, but WOW! That meat was WONDERFUL!
This is my dad, carving the prime rib, YUM!
After eating Prime Rib, Texas Road House baked potatoes, asparagus (me not Travis, Travis doesn't eat green vegetables), and a Swiss vegetable medley it was finally time to attack the tree presents.
Rhylee "sorting" the presents!
We quickly found that Rhylee likes to open presents. He isn't so much interested in what's in the gift, but the actual ripping of paper and throwing it aside is what he likes best. I think next year, I'm going to buy 5 rolls of paper, and just wrap empty boxes for him to rip open and play with :)
Justin is the traditional present sorter. I think he has a new apprentice.
After presents we helped clean up, played a little Mad Gab, and then headed home. It was a great day with laughter, good food, and a happy family! We were spoiled with presents again, and had a safe trip back to Galesburg.
We just want to thank everyone, Stechers, Chervenka's, and Vancil's for such a great holiday filled with traditions and love!