Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas 2011

This year we celebrated Christmas at our house a little early since Jenny spent Christmas Day with her mom this year. Aiden didn't really understand the difference, and Jenny was very excited that we were going to get to open gifts early and also because Santa came to our house early too!

We did everything just the way we would have done it on the actual Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. On our Christmas Eve we baked gingerbread cookies for Santa, set out the cookies a milk for Santa, and then read The Night Before Christmas and The Christmas Story before putting the kids to bed.

Santa was up very late this year getting all of Aiden and Jenny's toys set up and their presents wrapped ( next year, remind me to wrap gifts a few days before Christmas Eve!). At our house Santa doesn't wrap gifts - he brings them unwrapped, opened, and already put together and ready to play with. Any gifts at our house that are wrapped are from Jaime and I, or from someone other than Santa. That's how it worked when I was growing up, so that's how we do it now with our kids. Something new we started this year, was having Santa only bring 3 gifts each - the same amount of gifts Jesus was brought when He was born. :)

Aiden's stuff on the left; Jenny's stuff on the right.

Aiden was the first to wake up the next morning, around 9:00am. He woke Jaime and I up, and then we woke up Jenny. The kids began playing with their Santa stuff and then we opened gifts from each other. Once all the gifts were opened, we ate breakfast and everyone got dressed so we could go outside and let Aiden ride his new bike.


Santa forgot to bring Aiden a helmet...oops! Don't worry, we have already purchased a new one for him. Aiden was not too impressed with his bike at all. He liked it at first, but got frustrated with the pedals so he gave up. We haven't had a chance to really try again, but we will try again soon!

Jenny on the other hand (who needs a new helmet), rode her bike without training wheels by herself for the first time!! We have been working with her on this for a few weeks so it was nice to finally see her do it on her own. She was very proud of herself too! We're hoping to get her a new bike this Spring once the weather warms up a little as her bike is getting a little small for her.

After bike riding, we came back inside and the kids played some more with their new stuff. While they played, Jaime and I made lunch. We had ham, dressing, green beans, asparagus, mashed potatoes, and rolls. After lunch the rest of the day was spent playing with all of the new toys the kids received. It was a wonderful day! I hope you all had a great Christmas, too!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Gingerbread Train

Macy's Pink Pig 2011

Earlier this week Jaime and I took the kids to Lenox Mall in Atlanta to ride Macy's Pink Pig. This was our first year going, and was also the first time I had ever even heard of the Pink Pig. I was surprised to learn that the Pink Pig has actually been around since 1953!

We took the MARTA train to Lenox Mall to avoid traffic and so that the kids could ride on the MARTA train for the first time. Riding the MARTA might have been their most favorite part of the day.

Jenny on the MARTA Train

Her teeth crack me up! :)

Outside Lenox Mall. They thought this fountain was so cool!

Once we got inside the mall we went to get our tickets to ride the Pink Pig. Once again, I didn't realize what a big deal this tradition is. So when I saw the line and the lady told me we would have to wait in line for about an hour, I was shocked.

Jenny tried to take a picture of Jaime and I. :)

This is the original Pink Pig - for history on the Pink Pig, check out this website.

On the Pink Pig

The ride only lasts a few minutes and is set up to look like a storybook that tells you the story and history of Priscilla the Pink Pig. After you get off the train everyone gets a sticker and then you can go through the gift shop.

The kids had their picture made with Priscilla.

We all had a really great time and will probably go back again next year. I don't think we'll wait until so close to Christmas to go though. The Pink Pig opens at the end of October and runs through January 1st, so we will probably try to go earlier next year to avoid the large crowds.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Tour of Homes

Today I am linking up with Kelly from Kelly's Korner Blog for her Show us Your Life Christmas Tour of Homes! Head on over there to link up!

We put up our tree on Thanksgiving Day. It actually had been up a few days prior, but we finished it on Thanksgiving Day. Between Jaime's work schedule and Jenny only being at our house every other week, it is difficult to find a time where we are all home together to do it.

We have had the same tree for the past few years, and every year I say that I'm going to get a new tree. Finally, this year we bought a new one. It is taller and wider than our old tree, and I like it much better. Space for decorating is a little limited at our house since we live in an apartment, but I like the way it turned out this year. :)

This is a handprint snowmen ornament that Jenny made last year in Kindergarten.

This poem is attached to the ornament.

I participated in an ornament exchange this year and this is one of the ornaments my exchange partner sent me. :)

This is another ornament sent to me from my ornament exchange partner. I love this verse!

Our tree stand. My mom purchased this stand a few years back, and gave it to us. I love it! I can't decide if it needs a tree skirt underneath or not though.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth!

In the last few weeks, Jenny has lost two more teeth! The Tooth Fairy has been at our house a lot lately!  :)

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Jenny's Gingerbread House

Last Friday Jenny's class made gingerbread houses at school. All of the parents were asked to send in an item for them to use to make their houses with. We were asked to send in a box of Golden Graham cereal. She brought her gingerbread house home from school that afternoon. She was very proud of her hard work!

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Elf on the Shelf

Our Elf on the Shelf's name is Edward. He first came to our house last year around Christmas. This is his second year visiting our house and the kids love him! We read the book, The Elf on the Shelf, on the night before Thanksgiving and Edward appeared at our house for the first time this year on Thanksgiving Day.

When Aiden and Jenny woke up Thanksgiving morning, Edward was hanging out in the stuffed animal net in their room! It took them a little while to find him, but it wasn't too long before they found his hiding spot.

Since then we have read the Elf on the Shelf book several times. Sometimes I read it to the kids, and sometimes Jenny reads it to us. Even Aiden has most of the words memorized and can "read" most of the book too.

Edward helped himself to some cookies and milk!

Part of the Elf on the Shelf tradition is that you are not supposed to touch the elf. Last year this was a bit of a problem for Aiden, and he ended up touching him several times. He had just turned two years old at the time, so we didn't make much of a big deal about it. This year though, we try to remind him more often that he isn't supposed to touch Edward. A few weeks ago we watched the Elf on the Shelf movie that was on TV. There is a part in the movie where their elf, Chippey, gets touched and loses his magic. After seeing the movie, Aiden is very serious about not touching Edward. I've even heard him remind Jenny a few times not to touch him.

So far, the Elf on the Shelf has been a lot of fun for Aiden and Jenny. They both love waking up and trying to find his newest hiding spot. I hope this is something that they will both enjoy for years to come.

Christmas Card 2011

I am linking up with Faith's Christmas Card Carousel.

This is also our last Christmas card with only two children in it. Next year little Sophia will be in the picture too!

Merry Christmas, friends!

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