Wednesday, December 26, 2012


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Day

 On Christmas Eve, the kids insisted on leaving cookies and milk for Santa.  Serra colored a picture for him and wanted me to leave a drawing of holly so that he would know it was for him- Ian also added a nametag just in case.
 Sure enough, Santa found the cookies and milk and took Serra's picture with him!
And the stockings were stuffed by the fireplace with care!
 How the tree looked after Santa arrived!
I tried to block the stairs in hopes that if they woke up before we did they would come get us instead of going straight downstairs.  As it turned out, I woke up before they did- at 8am!

Christmas morning- the kids with their Santa gifts!

 One of my big gifts- a DS and Brain Age from Ian.

Serra gave Ian a roll-up piano.

I gave Alex a helicopter and army hat- I LOVE the face he makes when he's making it fly!

Ian gave Serra a new dress and gloves- the gloves are too big, but she'll grow into them!

Alex got a train whistle and hat in his stocking and decided to try them out later- gangsta style!

And just for giggles... on Serra's last day of school before Christmas she was allowed to wear a Christmas hat.  She chose some reindeer antlers and right when I was about to take a picture of her she said, "wait, Mommy!  I need to stand like a reindeer!"  This is what she envisions reindeer stand like... :)

We had a wonderful Christmas and hope all of you did too!  MERRY CHRISTMAS to ALL- and to ALL a GOOD NIGHT!

Monday, December 24, 2012

24 Days of Christmas

Each day the kids open a present to see what the activity of the day was!

Day 1: Put up the Christmas tree- and I made this felt tree for them to redecorate any time they wanted!

Day 2: Write letters to Santa.  Serra asked for a princess bike with a carriage for her baby to ride in, red sparkly shoes that don't hurt her feet, and a piece of candy.  Alex asked for cars, drums, and candy.

Day 3: We went to a "festival of trees" and boutique at the University Mall with their cousin, Scott.  This was their favorite tree.
Day 4: We went to a Christmas puppet show at the local library.  My kids have never really sat long enough to enjoy a story time or puppet show, but this time seemed to work- maybe we'll go more often this next year now!

Day 5: We colored some Christmas pages and put on Christmas tattoos with some neighbor friends!

Day 6: We made some ornaments out of buttons to look like a wreath- Serra gave some to her teachers for a Christmas gift this year.

Day 7: We made hand-print ornaments to be able to remember how small they used to be years later.

Day 8: Gingerbread house day!  First we went to Lowe's free kid's clinic where they made some wooden gingerbread houses- with a hinged roof so they can put stuff in it!
 Then we made a gingerbread house out of foam from a kit I bought last year.
 Lastly, they made a cookie gingerbread house with Daddy!

Day 9: Christmas trivia game and Christmas puzzles- Serra definitely takes after her dad and loves to build puzzles.

Day 10: Free carriage rides at Provo Riverwoods... 
 AND 7-Eleven hot cocoa!

Day 11: We grew a crystal tree and snowman with our friends, Hailey and Kinzey.  It takes a couple of hours for the crystals to show and the kids kept asking, "can we see them yet?"

Day 12: We went to Thanksgiving Point to see some of Santa's reindeer and watch someone sculpt ice in-person.  The man doing it when we showed up was sculpting a polar bear!

Day 13: We made snowflakes- these are our paper ones.  And yes, Alex and Serra really cut the ones they are holding!
 We also made a snowflake with a tortilla, baked it and sprinkled it with powdered sugar and silver sprinkles!

Day 14: The kids made snowglobes out of baby food jars- Serra's has a Christmas tree and Alex's is a snowman.

Day 15: We went to Thanksgiving Point to see the holiday lights.  We also visited Santa at a neighbor's house and drove by a couple of homes in the area that put their lights to a radio station for quite a show!
 This is what their expressions were for most of the lighting show... too enthralled to even show excitement!

Day 16: We were waiting for it to snow so that we could have our SNOW DAY!  We built a snowman with a snowman kit Ian's aunt, Denise, gave us last year for Christmas.
 And we went sledding for the first time- the kids LOVED it!

Day 17: Some neighbors were hosting caroling at their house and even though it was raining, we showed up to sing!

Day 18: We went to IKEA, one of the kids' favorite stores because they get a free meal on Tuesdays and Serra gets to play in their playland while Alex wanders the store with me to see what he can find!

Day 19: We have a neighborhood co-op where we take turns watching each others' kids for free.  Today was my assigned shift, so we decided to have a Christmas party!  We played games- below are the winners for pinning the carrot on the snowman.
 And we made artwork with our FEET!

Day 20: We invited our friends, Benjamin and Anna, over to make some cards and brought them with some goodies we made to the local Fire and Police departments.  We forgot to get a picture at the Fire department, but the kids posed with a policeman!

Day 21: We kept our annual tradition this year of going to Ian's aunt Denise's house to bake goodies!  Serra made some sugar cookies that you stack to make a Christmas "tree".

Day 22: We all went to the Dollar Tree and got to pick out 1 thing for each person in the family.  When we got home, we each had 3 gifts to open.  It was interesting to see what the kids picked and how well they know the kinds of things we like!

Day 23: We had a Christmas slumber party with my cousin's kids, Cecily and Andrew, and so we made some pizza for dinner...
 And "snowball" pancakes for breakfast [Aebelskivers]!

Day 24: We opened up our new Christmas PJs- the kids both LOVE theirs!
 And right before bed, Daddy read The Night Before Christmas poem.

It was a LOT of work to come up with ideas, coordinate it with our schedule and make sure we completed each activity.  But it was SO worth it- the kids loved it and so did I!  It created a lot of great memories, too. I don't think we'll do it again for a while, but we'll definitely keep up several of the activities for traditions- we just won't do 24 activities!