To my little Santa babies,
I love Christmas so much! I love celebrating the birth of our Savior, I love the joy that comes with this holiday, the food, the décor, the traditions and mostly, I love the magic of the season and to see it through a child’s eyes. That is why Christmas is so much fun with you kiddos! And this year was the most fun yet! Hayley, you are at the age where you are starting to understand Santa, and can learn about the story of Christ’s birth. And Will, it was special for you since it is your first Christmas!
This year we have continues so many family traditions, added new ones, and got to experience so many fun things! Here is a recap of Christmas 2016:
Picking out our Christmas tree: (tradition) Every year we go to a Christmas tree stand to pick out our tree. This year it took us two days, 3 tree tents, and 2 garden nurseries all in the poring rain before we found the perfect one! But I looked beautiful in our house!
Christmas Book present (tradition): After Thanksgiving I wrap all of your Christmas books and you get to pick one out from underneath the tree every night, unwrap it, and read it for your bedtime story. You love this!
The Kindness Elf (new tradition). This year Joy the Christmas elf came to our house to help us spread Christmas cheer and report back to Santa every night when she flies back to the North Pole. She tells Santa every night if we have done a good job spreading Christmas cheer to our friends, family and those in need. She asked us to do things like decorate our Christmas trees to spread joy at home, decorate cookies with our friends and exchange Christmas presents to put our friends in the holiday spirit, and donate our old toys to less fortunate boys and girls to spread Christmas cheer to them. You were so sweet going through your stuffed animals and picking out the ones that you wanted to give away. We took them to the Providence house donation center to be given to other boys and girls and you were sad that you couldn’t actually see the boys and girls to give them the toys, you are sweet with such a loving and compassionate heart. I pray you never lose that! On Christmas Eve, Joy went back to the North Pole with Santa and will be back next year!
Hand and Foot Pint ornaments (tradition): Every year I make an impression of your hand and foot print in salt dough to hang on the tree. Will, this was your first year to do it! I cherish these ornaments, as well as all of the ornaments we collect throughout the year from all of the places we go. I have also started another ornament tradition this year. I have started needlepointing and I am going to make a needlepoint ornament every year. This year’s ornament is a Christmas tree with candy on it.
A trip to the Gaylord Texan: We had so much fun last year at the Gaylord that we have decided to make it a tradition! We got to go see Santa and you kids sat on his lap. Hayley, you told Santa what you wanted for Christmas- “A pink bicycle, a Barbie, and a little toy baby car”. You both loved Santa! We saw the toy trains, a life size gingerbread house, and sit in Santa’s sleigh. We also got to go to downtown Grapevine and watch the Grapevine Christmas parade. It was a cute parade, but not something we will make part of our tradition. Hayley you loved watching the floats and bands, and Will you started crying half way through so I took you back to the car. The next morning we woke up, had breakfast and went to see ICE! Since the tickets were sold out the day before (when we wanted to go), they told us to come back and they would take us to the front of the line for free! We went first thing that morning and we were allowed to go in by ourselves, before anyone else, and we had our own private tour of ICE! Hayley, Daddy, PawPaw and I (Will you stayed out with Grammie…it was too cold for you…9 degrees…burrrr!) went in and had so much fun! Hayley you loved the ice slide and you did it over and over again! The ICE exhibit was so beautiful and magical and it was so much fun to see it all by ourselves. After we went through the ICE display, we got to go snow tubing (indoors) and you had a blast! We had a double tube (you had to go with an adult) and we went probably 10 times. You loved it. You also got to throw real snow balls at the snowball booth. We finished off our trip in the gift shop to get an ornament and a loll pop for Hayley for the drive home. Great memories were made!
Decorating Cookies with friends: This is going to be our new tradition and a great way to spread Christmas cheer with our friends! One night we invited Aunt Cait Cait, Conly Rose and Christian over to eat dinner and decorate our cookies. Hayley, you and Conly Rose had so much fun decorating your cookies with red and green icing, sprinkles and candy. You had more fun eating them too! Will, you and Christian got to wear matching Christmas jammies and yall were so cute! We love spending time with our friends!
Decorating a Gingerbread house with Mommy and Grammie: Another new tradition! One night Grammie came over and we all had fun decorating a gingerbread house! (Will you were cranky and went to sleep). I made homemade gingerbread dough from scratch and put the house together before hand so all you had to do was decorate. You had a blast deciding what you wanted to put on your house, decorating it, and mostly eating all of the candy and marshmallows (you ate a TON of marshmallows!). You ate so many pieces of candy and half a bag of marshmallows that I thought you were going to get sick! But you didn’t! We put the finished gingerbread house on the buffet by the breakfast table and your eyes lit up every morning when you saw it. So much fun!
Playing on the playground at school with your adorable Christmas outfit!
Decorating your tree: We got you a pink tree this year so that brother can have a tree next year. You LOVE decorating your own tree, watching it light up, and showing it off to everyone who came over.
Dressed alike in your matching nativity scene smocked outfits for church. You two might hate me for dressing you alike one day, but I don’t care because it is TOO CUTE!!!
Christmas photo booth fun at dance class!
Songs of the Season: Grammie got us girls tickets to see Songs of the Season at Shreveport Community Church. It was such a great show with so many talented people! You loved it! We also saw Santa on the way in. (We also saw “Gloria,” the Christmas production at our church, but I didn’t get pictures of that.)
Exchanging presents with your friends: You and Conly Rose exchanged Christmas presents one day at lunch. YOu got her (and Christian) matching Christmas PJ’s and mommy made har a Conly Rose look alike pillow. She gave you a personalized Frozen pillow that you love so much and sleep with every night.
Getting nails done for your Christmas play: CaitCait and I took you and Conly Rose to get your nails painted for your Christmas production at school. You got red nails with white candy cane stripes. You were so proud of your nails that you showed everyone you saw! Will, you were so bored that you feel asleep in the baby bjorn. Ha!
Christmas program at school: Hayley, your class (and the preschoolers at Mother’s Day Out) put on a Christmas program where you all sand Christmas songs. This was the cutest thing I have ever seen! You stood up there and sang Jingle Bells, the Reindeer hokey pokey and a song that you all jumped and danced to. You were so adorable dressed like a reindeer and were not scared at all to get up there in front of everyone. We were so proud! After your program your class had a little Christmas party with lunch and Christmas treats! Grammie, PawPaw, Gappy, Grandma and Daddy all came to watch you sing and see you at your party in your room. I am so glad that you love your school so much!
That afternoon after your Christmas program it was a beautiful day so we played outside. We had fun running and playing in the beautiful weather! (Yes, I dressed your two alike again…its so cute!)
Chrsitmas at Grammie and PawPaw’s: We celebrated Christmas with them the weekend before so that Uncle Bobby and Aunt Dee. We celebrated Uncle Bobby’s birthday that Friday night and Hayley you helped him open all of his presents. The next day, we went back over to their house and opened presents and ate a yummy brunch! Hayley, you got a singing Minnie mouse, board games, alphabet sets, books, and a play broom set. Will you got a singing Marine Corp. bear, a toy dump truck, a tractor with animals, toy tools, and a little chair. Hayley you love brother’s dump truck and tractor almost as much as your own toys! It was a fun weekend!
Christmas Eve: You woke up Christmas Eve morning to your Christmas Eve box (another tradition). It had your outfits for Christmas Eve church, your matching Christmas Eve jammies, aprons for baking cookies, mix for baking cookies (flour, sugar, chocolate chips), hot coca, plate and cup for Santa’s cookies and milk, a Christmas craft, and your Christmas Eve book to unwrap. I made breakfast (snowman pancakes) and then Hayley, Nana (who came in town for Christmas) and myself made chocolate chip cookies for Santa (while wearing your Christmas Eve apron)! You love baking and had so much fun making the cookies to leave out for him that night. That night we went to Christmas Eve service at church and then came home to eat dinner and eat birthday cake (a birthday cake for Jesus). You two put your jammies on, we put out cookies and milk for Santa and carrots for his reindeer, and then unwrapped our Christmas Eve book. Y‘all then went to bed to wait for Santa to come!
Christmas morning: Santa came!!! You two must have been so good all year long! He brought Hayley the pink bicycle she wanted, two small Barbies, little toy cars, puzzles, blocks, a ball shooter, a dress up Peppa pig, a writing tablet, art supplies, cloths, matching swimsuit and jammies for you and your bitty baby and more! Santa brought Will some baby toys, a water mat, a play activity horse, a drum, gummy stick teether, a camo alligator, clothes, shoes, and more! Nana brought you clothes, blankets she made you (Hayley got a Minnie Mouse and Will go a Winnie the Pooh) and she even gave you my old rocking horse! Nana. Gappy and Grandma all came over that morning to watch you open presents and we had our traditional Christmas breakfast of Scrambled Eggs, bacon, homemade biscuts, cheese grits and fruit salad! Yum!
Christmas night: Nana left to go back home and we went to Gappy and Grandma’s house. Uncle Ryan and Aunt Jessie were there and we ate a delicious Christmas meal and opened presents! Hayley got a bike for their house, a tutu, Octonaut toys, a magnadoodle and a wagon to share with brother. Will, you got a bouncy play gym for their house and clothes. We had a fun night and then we left to go home and go to bed. It was the best Christmas yet!