This was a year of firsts-our first Christmas in our new house; Mamie's first Christmas; the first time I hosted Christmas dinner. It took me a long time to get the house decorated, and I never did finish. I think it will take a few Christmas's in this house to really get in the groove ;)
I was pretty nervous about the Christmas tree in the living room. I was sure that our three curious kids would send the tree crashing, but they loved it and were just excited to see it lit up every day. Peyton would turn on the lights constantly, and he gave people tours of the tree, pointing out all of his favorite ornaments. Jackson immediately claimed all of Brian's Star Wars ornaments and moved them up to the tree in his room. Mamie never tried to take the ornaments down. It was a big success! I didn't have a plan for our stockings, so I found myself digging for push pins on Christmas Eve. I'll be better prepared next year! My Starbucks tree found a home in the kitchen, and we kept all the cards we received on display in our main hallway.
Peyton's Tree * Jackson's Tree * Guest Room Tree
The hat. Peyton has been wearing a Santa hat since Thanksgiving. I'm not sure he'll give that up so easily. One day we were at Target and Peyton picked out a box of red star ornaments. He had to have them! He carried them all through the store and didn't want to let the cashier scan them. He loved his tree. We would unplug the lights in the morning and he would sneak up to his room and plug them back in. He loved reading Christmas stories, drinking hot chocolate, his Mickey Mouse Christmas shirt, and all Christmas movies/shows. He still didn't really understand the concept of Santa, so when he came down on Christmas morning, he was confused but happy.
Peyton on Christmas Morning
Jackson has a good collection of ornaments already and he loved all of Daddy's Star Wars ornaments. His tree is almost full! His favorite Christmas movie is Elf. He was able to explain advent to me this year in the sweet way that only a child can. He sang Christmas carols and made magic reindeer food. This was the first time he made a Christmas list. He was concerned about our visit to see Santa because he knew that Santa was super busy this time of year. He and I went to the children's vigil at our church on Christmas Eve. He asked me questions and was so well behaved. I love that he wants to understand the story of Jesus. He made our Christmas magical, joyful, and one I will remember and treasure always.
Mamie was so lucky-she had TWO trees in her room! My mom gave her a little tree that we kept on her dresser and then she had a bigger tree, just like the boys. They loved coming into her room to check out her white tree and sparkly ornaments. I even wrapped some tulle around the tree to make a tree skirt. I made Mamie a Christmas crib sheet-you can see she was completely unimpressed. Mamie's first Christmas was so much fun. She loved her new toys and was a pro at opening presents. It is so much fun to add some pink to our house! The boys are so sweet with her-they've had tea parties and picnics and in the last few days the boys Star Wars toys have made themselves at home in Mamie's new princess castle.
We made some Christmas art with the kids and even sneaked in some fine motor skill practice for Jackson. He made a paper chain and he took his paper cutting VERY seriously ;)
I didn't bake, but we did enjoy some special Christmas treats. One morning I surprised the boys with Christmas tree waffles (and snowman donuts). I think their favorite treat (and Brian's too) was the chocolate chip candy cane pancakes. I found the idea here . It was easy to do and the boys were crazy about them! (I actually found all of these ideas from blogs through Pinterest-there are so many awesome people out there with fun and easy ideas). We made candy cane shaped pancakes (I actually just made mini pancakes and made the candy cane from there-I am terrible at making shaped pancakes). And Jackson proudly made reindeer cookies which we gave to his teachers and the pre-school director. He had so much fun being my kitchen helper, and I was able to sneak in some more fine motor skill practice. Win, win.
But these last pictures sum up our Christmas, our year, our life the best. We spent time together. Snuggling, laughing, playing, making each other crazy. But always together. Our house is so full of love. I can't wait to see what 2013 has in store for us.