Wednesday, December 23, 2015

More December Joy...

...Reading The Polar Express with Cruz by the light of his Christmas tree.

...A trip to visit Santa with pancakes, eggs over easy, and free pie at Village Inn afterwards.  Friends who feel more like family.  Cruz and Claire wouldn't stop singing the months of the year son and later, as we were eating, an older man walked by our table and whispered to them, "my, you two are good singers."

...Singing Be Thou My Vision at the Women's Advent Dinner, surrounded by wonderful models of strong, beautiful, disciples of Jesus.

...So many movie nights.  With popcorn.  And cocoa cups to follow.

...The quiet contentment I feel after the kids are asleep.  The satisfaction of sinking into the couch for a new season of Fixer Upper.

...Silly sweaters, good friends, and laughing hysterically over a diverse sampling of white elephant gifts at Tom and Jamie's.

...Mila in her nighties.  How she immediately wants to go show them to daddy, then twirl in circles until she makes herself dizzy.  I put her in a little Laura Ingalls Wilder flannel one last night and could not get enough. 

...A Christmas cocktail party at our house for Beau's entire office.  I had a sparkling sangria with cranberries and sugar coated rosemary sprigs that looked like snowy evergreen, a whipped-cream topped White Russian, and sparkling cider, and lots and lots of appetizers.  Christmas music played, Cruz and Mila were the door greeters, and we had a wonderful night full of lots of good Christmas cheer.  

...A Christmas card that has become one of my favorites.

...Donuts on a Saturday morning

...An impromptu Sunday night stay-at-home-date with Beau.  We made White Russians with whipped cream, snuggled up on the couch, and watched a Very Murray Christmas.  All that's left on our list now is the Griswold's.

...Holiday food prep.  Two pans of lasagna for Christmas Eve and Christmas night, egg bake for Christmas morning, zuppa for Christmas Eve Eve.  It's a family affair.

...And lastly, three of my favorite Christmas memories made this year, three days in a row.  Thursday night, we bundled the kids up and spent the night at our storybook downtown.  We had cheeseburgers at Toads, watched the ice sculpturists on each block, and let the kids browse in Peekaboo baby.  There were ice luminaries with little votive candles lined up and down the entire street and the kids giggled and hurdled over every single one of them.  We soon found ourselves in a corner of Cup of Joe and treated the kids to Santa cookies and the adults to peppermint lattes.  The kids waved at Olaf, the Grinch, and Santa through the lit up windows, and all felt calm and bright.  Afterwards, lattes and kids in hands, we drove around and looked at Christmas lights until they fell asleep and carried them into their beds with the lights from all the Christmas trees lighting the way.

...Friday night, we invited Charly, Hayes, and Harper over for a pajama, pizza, and movie night.  Jordan and Kelli, Taylor and Katie joined us, too, and we had so much fun together.  The kids were angels all night, so happy to play together, and the adults sipped festive drinks and played games at the table until 11:00.  And the kids were still going!  I made a little hot cocoa bar for the kids to have their own cup of cheer, a ritual I decided would show its face much earlier next year.

...And Saturday morning, another trip to Main Street for Cruz and I.  We shared a cinnamon roll at Cup of Joe before crossing the street to the historic Oster Regent Theatre for a showing of one of my favorite Christmas movies, Home Alone.  It was extra special because Cruz had never seen the entirety of the movie, and it was fun to get a taste of it in such a unique setting.  We sat with Jordan, Charly, and Hayes in the balcony, and they hardly moved the entire movie!  Jordan and I decided many of the kids in the theatre must not have seen the movie before, for the giggles and squeals and cheers were awesome!  We left the theatre feeling very much in the Christmas spirit, and very thankful for a small town that thrives on creating storybook experiences for families. 

...And lunch and a little shopping with my mom to follow!

Well, it's practically here!  Wishing you and yours a joy-filled Christmas with old traditions and new memories to last a lifetime.  

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