Friday, January 18, 2013

December 2012: Leading up to Christmas

Again, this poor neglected blog...**sigh** We are all still cooped up with ROUND 3 of the Flu! Just when I think we are finally over it, something else hits! Its beyond ridiculous. So... I guess I will be skipping blogging about Halloween and Thanksgiving. Just know that they were both GREAT! :) But I refuse to skip over December and Christmas! 

December was a busy, busy month for us. It flew by in blur, as it always seems to. But besides still dealing with the fact that I am expecting, and that we are having a GIRL... AND dealing with sickness after sickness... we had to get ready for Christmas! 

We started the month with putting up our Christmas tree. Owen LOVED it. He remembered it from last year, especially the train that goes around and kept exclaiming 'I'm SO excited!' when we pulled out the tree and decorations! Such a little boy. 

Owen right after we set up the tree, before the TRAIN came out! So much excitement!

We also visited Santa, a few times. Well... if we were at the mall, which we often were, we ALWAYS had to stop and see him, if there was no line, which there often wasn't early in the season. Owen would give Santa a high-five or even a hug (I was shocked!) and then spout off quickly and quietly his Christmas list. Santa: 'Owen, What would you like for Christmas?' Owen: 'Dart, Edward, James, Gordon, Tidmouth Sheds!' Except he would mumble it so fast that Santa never quite understood him and would just give a jolly chuckle. :) Now, if you are unfamiliar with 'Thomas & Friends' you wouldn't know that everything on his list is related to Thomas and trains. (You'll just have to wait and see if Santa delivered said trains...) 

We also saw Santa at our local neighborhood clubhouse, where he came with hot chocolate and donuts! Owen was happy to wait in line to see him again and get a candy cane treat... Nathan was not. 

Now, I can't say for sure... but I don't think Nathan was scared of Santa, he just didn't love the fact that we "abandoned him!" But it makes for a classic Christmas pic! Love it! 

I wanted to do some fun 'little kid friendly' Christmas activities to help Owen grasp the idea of Christmas, and incorporate more of the Savior so that he could understand that really Christmas is not all about Santa and gifts, but "Jesus' Birthday." I really do think he got it. He is so sweet, and I think he really knows the Savior. Whenever we list members of the family, he always includes Jesus in that list. It melts my heart. 

I decided I wanted to do a 12 Days of Christmas sort of thing... where every night we did something small to celebrate Christmas together as a family. It wasn't always centered around the Savior, but it was family time together. 

Day 1: Decorate! 
Decorate the house with Grandma! Owen loved helping put up all the decorations, stockings, and lights! 

Day 2: Read Nativity Story and Set up Nativity Set
Owen really liked this. We got out the very kid-friendly version/book of the Christmas story from Luke, which we got for him last year. Grandpa read the story to him, and then we set up each piece of the Nativity and talked about it. He loved the Baby Jesus. 

Day 3: Trip to Seattle/Ward Christmas Party
I knew I really wanted to take Owen downtown Seattle. They have a whole winter train set up there at the Seattle Center, and I knew he would love it! He also loves the Space Needle, the Monorail, the international water fountain, and the big buildings. Seattle was sure to be a hit! We took him to the Seattle Center looked at the trains for awhile, rode the monorail to the Westlake center to buy Christmas gifts for Grandma and Grandpa. Grandpa got a chocolate space needle.... which was the CLEAR choice. Owen refused to even look at anything else. That was THE gift for Grandpa! It was hilarious! Grandma got a box of hand picked (by Owen!) See's candy. 

Owen pointing out the Trains at the Seattle Center. 

We also saw the Biiiiiiiiiiiiiiig Christmas Tree outside the Westlake Center and the carousel they had going across the street. Man, could Seattle be any funner for a 2 year old!? 

We ate lunch, rode the monorail back, saw the trains some more, saw the International Water Fountain, and called it a morning. Back home in time for naps! (Both boys fell asleep on the way home!) Success!

Owen with the water fountain. He keeps asking to go back to Seattle. 

Nathan is just our happy little bug, who enjoys the company. Love this kid!

Later that night, we had our wonderful ward Christmas Party and dinner. Where I got to be the photographer, and greet everyone as they came in and take thier family portrait. It was a fun night. 

Day 4: Make our Christmas Treats and Deliver them. 
All day Sunday we spent baking our Christmas treats! Before and after church! Owen loved rolling out the dough and cutting out shapes, like any little child does. I'm just sad I didn't take any pictures. Too busy in the kitchen I suppose. We delivered them late into the night. 

Day 5: Make Fruit Baskets 
Every year my parents make fruit baskets for their friends and co-workers. Owen loves fruit. As soon as he saw them come in the door with crate-fulls of fruit he was all over that! He kept asking to save him some, and which one was his. (My mom made him one too! Lucky boy!) I had originally planned to make a Gingerbread House on Day 4 with him... but he was so excited about the Fruit baskets that it became the activity instead. He also went along with Grandma and Grandpa to deliver them. :) 

Day 6: Watch Muppet Christmas Carol 
Its just not Christmas until you've watched Muppet Christmas Carol. At least not for Shad and I! Its our childhood favorite. We love it! Owen is still too little for some parts, especially since he is so sensitive. He doesn't do very many movies, he gets too scared. But he still enjoyed the songs and even asked to watch it again! 

Day 7: Christmas Lights & Hot Chocolate 
When Shad and I were dating in Provo, he took me out on a Christmas date. I was bummed I couldn't spend Christmas at home, and he made up for it with a date night of warm delicious scones and hot chocolate. Then we drove around and looked at all the Christmas Lights. We went around to all the "Rich and Fancy" neighborhoods and gawked at their huge houses and light shows. From then on... it became our tradition. We've done it every year. But since we don't have Scone-cutter here, its been reduced to just hot chocolate. :) Owen loved it last year... we actually did a lot of walking around last year. This year we just drove around the neighborhood, and looked at all the lights. I think Owen enjoyed the hot chocolate the most!  

Day 8: Christmas Craft Playgroup 
A couple other moms and I got together for a little lunch date/playgroup with the babes. So much fun! The kiddos decorated stockings with felt stickers and got to play together. And us mom's got out of the house, talked, enjoyed company, and ate some yummy soup lunch. Mmm...  Owen was very excited to show off his stocking he made to everyone here at the house. And he just HAD to hang it up by the fireplace with the others!

Day 9: Rice Krispie Train 
This was a hit. Instead of doing a gingerbread house, Grandma brought home a "Christmas Rice Krispie Train" Kit. It had train molds, frosting, and little candies to decorate the train. Owen absolutely loved it! It was so much fun to do with him! 

Waiting for the train molds! 

Starting to decorate with frosting and candy!

Look at that concentration! 

His face was much more messy that this picture depicts! He was definitely sneaking tastes of the frosting!

The final product and center piece of our dessert table for Christmas dinner: Voila!  

Day 10: Wrap Gifts 
The Saturday before Christmas we wrapped a bunch of presents with Owen. The ones he had gotten in Seattle for Grandma and Grandpa, plus the one he got for Daddy (a tie he picked out). He was so excited to put them under the tree and help open them later. He started wrapping pretend gifts and putting fake gifts under the tree!! Cute. 

Day 11: Christmas Sunday at Church
Always the best Sunday of the year! Poor Shad missed out because by this time he was struck down with Round 2.0 of McOmber Cold/Flu Season 2012-13. Luckily, we still had a few days before it would hit the rest of us! Owen loves music. Both my boys do. Nathan loves it too. Owen couldn't get enough Christmas music around the house, and loves to sing the Christmas hymns. His eyes lit up when the choir sang some Christmas songs he knew on Christmas Sunday. And he belted out "Angels with Have Heard on High" with all his heart when the choir sang. Melted me. It just shows me again, that he truly knows our Savior, and knows that those songs are praises to him.  

Nathan all clean, dressed, and smiling for Christmas Sunday at Church! It doesn't get much cuter than this... 

Day 12: Christmas Eve with the Lomelis 
This will get it's own separate blog post. But every year we spend Christmas Eve at our dear friends, the Lomeli's house, they are family. We eat a delicious meal, share talents, read Luke 2, and sing songs. Its my favorite Holiday Tradition, I think. We've done it for as long as I can remember! (Minus those 3 years we lived in Texas! 1997-1999) 

I cannot believe I didn't get more pictures in December of the boys prepping for Christmas. It was so cute. But I at LEAST had to document our December time together... for my memories. It truly is a special time of year, that comes and goes too quickly. 

Things that I HAD on our 12 Days List, but we never had time: 
- Zoolights... we went last year. Owen loved it, and I'm sure he would have loved it even more this year. But it was too cold, too rainy, and we were just to tired and sick most nights to make it out there. Next year I suppose. 
-DQ Candy Cane Blizzards! It just sounded delicious! But we were so bombarded with treats, it just seemed CRAZY to go out for more! 
-Gingerbread House. After the Train Rice Krispie Treat success... it just seems like that will be our new tradition instead of the house. And in my opinion... much easier! 

1 comment:

Mallory said...

What a fun December! And your expecting! and its a girl! (I know its not new news, but I've been MIA from the blogosphere). Congratulations! And despite your fears, I know you will be a fantastic mom to your baby girl!