Do any of the rest of you look at your house differently when you know people are coming? I clean stuff I don't normally clean, like baseboards. And chandelier crystals. I like to entertain from time to time to ensure I don't lose control of the house:)
The evening came and I had to run to my Aunt Pat's house (two doors down) to take family pictures for her. Four generation pictures. That was neat. Then I ran back down to get everything ready. The rest of the evening was a total blur. My couch from the living room is getting reupholstered and I was so worried about only having a love seat. But when I sat up two card tables and eight chairs in the living room, it was wonderful to not have a couch in the way.
I'm sure the food was wonderful (because we had our traditional Christmas Eve Stack-Ups) but I spent the entire dinner time busy. I refilled ingredient dishes, put up tables and chairs, took down tables and chairs, made drinks, moved my picture table over, moved the coffee table to the den, hand picked rice out of the living room carpet, cleaned up after 11 children, and banged on the laundry room door to hush the dog.
I did sit down to eat dessert though. It's all about priorities folks.
Shortly after that I had to hop up to take group pictures. I was trying to decide where when Shawn mentioned using the professional lighting we hadn't returned to my neighbor. Soon my living room had orange extension cords, 26 people, chairs, peacock feathers to tickle the younger ones, and some sweaty people. Our house has never been able to keep up with a crowd. One vent in the living room, and one in the dining room don't really keep the temp at a pleasant place. We were all in it for the cause though.
Here are a few of the good ones. Let me say first, it is nearly impossible to get all the children and the parents and grandparents smiling at once. Or even looking at the camera. But, it was fun and shows the real family. We're not all posed types of people. We're real. And we didn't attempt to hang the backdrop. We were already losing the focus of the younger children about 3.5 seconds in.This last picture is the funniest to me. I was trying to direct Kennedy to focus first, center everyone, and count for us. And at the same time, lose 40 pounds, foof my hair in just the right place, and wonder if my makeup was melting off. I was missing what was happening on the front row. Shawn (left end) and Jeremy (right end) were cracking each other up because apparently Shawn had no idea what to do with his hands. It seems that he's never been on the front row of a picture! I have four pictures all with his hands in different places. Love that man!
After a whirlwind day and evening I was so glad we had the big, centrally located house. And you know what? Who cares about the dusty baseboards or the chandelier crystals? It was about all being together for that time. Although we really missed the cousins that live out of state, we don't know where we would have put them if they'd come!