I was inspired by Susan's post, to share my own Christmas memories!
When we lived in Illinois/Ohio, we always spent Christmas with my mom's parents, who lived in Ohio. One particular year, when I was 5 or so, we had gotten a big box of presents from my other grandparents and aunts and uncles. I couldn't wait to open them! However, we had to wait, because my mom didn't think it would be fair for us to open twice the number of gifts that my cousins had. I was just dying to open those gifts, I couldn't wait till my cousins left! I kept asking, "When are they going to leave?" and when they were finally walking out the door, I was running down the hall shouting excitedly about opening our gifts (note: the door didn't have time shut behind them before I started shouting!). Kids just don't have tact, do they? ;-)
Another Christmas memory is sleeping on the hide-away couch in my grandparent's living room. We got to go to sleep with the Christmas tree still lit, and it was so fun to lay there in the dark with just the Christmas tree shining. Of course, it sounds peaceful, but the other half of the time, my sister and I (who didn't share a bed at home) were fighting over the covers. It's amazing that we didn't rip the sheets to shreds, the way we pulled and tugged those covers!
After my family and my grandparents moved to California, we split Christmas Day with my mom's parents and my dad's parents. We started the fun tradition of bringing all our gifts over to my mom's parents and opening everything there. It has always been a controlled mad house with wrapping paper flying everywhere, punctuated with shouts of "OH MY GOODNESS. I LOVE IT!" (That would be from my dramatic, younger sisters!)
One year, when I was about 11 or 12, my grandpa gave me $10 before Christmas, and helped me shop for my sisters. That was tremendously fun! I couldn't wait for them to open my gifts on Christmas Day!
One last memory - the year that Kevin and I got engaged! His mom flew us to Washington the week before Christmas. The evening after our arrival, we went on a ferry across the Puget Sound. As the Seattle skyline faded in the distance, Kevin worked up the courage to ask me to be his wife! :-) And of course, I said yes! Well, actually I nodded yes, until Kevin prompted me to say yes. LOL For some reason, I think because our tickets were purchased at different times, I flew home a day before Kevin did. The ticket agent asked Kevin if I was flying as an unaccompanied minor! Haha...her face got so red when she found out that I was 23 and newly engaged, not under the age of 12! When I got off the plane, my siblings bombarded me with hugs and everyone was tugging at my hand trying to see my ring! Kevin was also included in our family Christmas, and he proposed to me several times in front of the family. :-)