On December 19th, Emily graduated from George Mason University -- Magna Cum Laude. She double majored in Global Affairs with a concentration in Global Governance and Russian and Eurasian Studies with a concentration in Russian Language and Culture. She has worked very hard for this and we are so proud of her.
We had one of the nicest Christmases I can remember. I was so stressed up until Christmas Eve and then somehow things just fell into place and Christmas Eve and Christmas day were so nice. The confusion was actually pretty much under control -- partly, I think, because I decided to go ahead and let the younger kids open their presents before everyone arrived. We usually wait for all of our adult kids to get here and we all open together. But, there are so many of us and there is so much confusion that I think it kind of makes it a little too chaotic. So, by the time my older kids got here on Christmas morning -- somewhere around 9:00 -- the younger kids were mostly finished and then we started again with our older kids and grandchildren. I really don't like confusion so this really made my day better and I think everyone enjoyed it more. There can be an awful lot of noise and mess with 20 kids and spouses and boyfriends and grandchildren.
After we finished eating and unwrapping at our house we loaded up all the kids to take them to their grandparent's house. Then we spent the next few hours visiting and sharing gifts and eating.
This year the kids got a lot of gifts that they can make or put together or do art with -- a message in a bottle kit, art sets, puzzles, art tablets, games, origami and lots of books. So they have spent a lot of time reading and playing games and drawing this past week. Nice.
I do think that this holiday season was difficult on Sophia even though I tried my best to keep things calm and keep her routine. She doesn't like too many people visiting and she definitely doesn't like going places -- Bill had to take her home early from the candle light service at church on Christmas Eve. It was just too much for her.
As soon as Christmas was over it was time for my granddaughter Reagan's first birthday party. She had her party at our house and I think it was a hit as far as she was concerned. Especially since she got cake -- not something my daughter usually lets her have.
Happy New Year!