Saturday, December 28, 2013

Smiling is my favorite...

We celebrated our RanHonFam Christmas on the afternoon of Christmas Eve. It was the only time we could carve out a few hours for us to be in the same place at the same time, between work schedules and other responsibilities.

And it was wonderful.

We had breakfast for lunch, and late in the afternoon, we had a Chicago style pizza. I decided to treat myself to something easy – and we all love it. NOTE FOR NEXT YEAR: It’s okay to do something easy for Ma.
This also made things easy for Ma/Gram...the littles in jail. Daisie is very manageable.

My favorite part of the day was that my surprise for the kids and The Farmer was truly a surprise and a big hit!

Because we are going to Hawaii with the kids in February, I warned them that Christmas gifts would be small. Of course, they didn’t care if they got anything with Hawaii on the horizon. However, I wouldn’t enjoy it at all if I didn’t get to do SOME shopping and giving.

I went with my recent discovery (thank you, Pinterest, for this revelation) and got them something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.

I saved the “Read” for last…

In the bottom of their gift bags was an Amazon gift card wrapped in a square of scrapbook paper. They opened it and said, “Oh! We get to pick our own book this year!” Of course, Dillon said, “Since this is an Amazon gift card, I don’t HAVE TO buy something to read…I could buy music, or whatever I want.”

That kid…always trying to yank my chain…and my chain is so easy to yank…But anyway, I ignored him, and told them to get out the piece of paper their card was wrapped in. When all had it in hand, I instructed them to go upstairs to my bedroom and find the box that had the same kind of paper on it.

Oh! They were like little kids again! Nothing is better than knowing your gift might be too big to fit under the tree! Shades of yesteryear, when they hoped (beyond hope, ‘cause it never did happen) that a Power Wheels would be up there.

No Power Wheels again this year, but they jostled and wrestled their boxes into the right hands and thundered down the stairs.

Even though the boxes were not wrapped, and the lettering was on the outside, no one noticed what these strangely shaped boxes contained. And then Jess saw the lettering…His eyes got big and he said, “NO WAY! REALLY?” The opening became more frenzied until all realized that they were holding a Kindle in their hands!

Cheering and happiness ensued…Made my whole day, well…my whole Christmas!

I thought Kindles would be a great complement to our upcoming Hawaiian adventure as we all like to read while relaxing. This way, we won’t need an extra suitcase for all the books we would want to have on hand.

And, boy howdy, were they excited about this. For the next 20 minutes, this is what I saw:

Everyone was getting their Kindle set up, and buying a book with their gift card.

I should say that we had fun with the other gifts that were given and received that day…and just being together. My kids are such nice grown-ups…God bless them! And I must say, God is gracious! It’s not like they had perfect parents by any means…(Well, Tiffany probably did.)

So it was all good…but I just love it when I can surprise my kids, and see their faces light up…Always have, always will.

Surprised smiles? They're my favorite!


Robyn Burke said...

Yee-Haw!! I love this something you want, something you need.. my daughter does this with her kids. Love it! And speaking of Hon-fam gatherings, we are having ours today. so excited! Merry Christmas and have a super fun time in Hawaii!! :)

Holly said...

Love this idea! It's so hard to surprise them at that rocked it, girlfriend!!!

Tami said...

You are a great gift giver, my friend. And that is a great family portrait, getting a family pic in one take with dogs is a Christmas miracle.

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Needing an outlet for various thoughts rattling in my head, I've created two blogs -- One about my real life ( and one where I can vent. (