Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Packed Weekend!

We had SUCH a great weekend - finally. :) Feeling vindicated after weeks of being sick and stuck at home! We packed in the holly jolly until we couldn't stand it. And we started it all with a night of lights.

We always pick a night to go through the shrine with the kids. We enjoy reading the Christmas story and driving through the light displays. Two of the three kids were awake the entire time, so that we'll count as a success

Every year Eric and I try to figure out just where we stopped on a cold night nine years ago where he proposed to me...and every year we can't seem to remember, haha. I suppose it was in the age before we took pictures of every little thing. :)  

Gracie sweet talked Eric into taking a full day off of work the next day for the girls' Christmas program at school. He was originally going to take off half of the day, but it was really nice having him home in the morning with us! We really did get an extra long weekend of fun. (Thanks, Grace. Daddy will do anything for you, haha.)

Ms. Black's Christmas programs are among some of my very fondest memories of elementary school. I was giddy to be sitting in the parent's seats and watching my own kids sing some of the same songs and make the same memories under the same teacher that both Eric and I had. This was Ms. Black's very last Christmas program ever. How lucky that Evie and Grace got to be a part of it!

It was as adorable as you might expect. Grace sung her heart out and Evelyn cracked us up the whole time being her normal goofy self. :)

Afterwards we were able to take the kids home with us, and we told them that we had a surprise for them. We were going to celebrate a great Christmas program with a special trip. The girls were dying to know where we were going!

Evelyn has this thing now where if you ask her for a picture she'll make a kissy face at the camera, haha.

Since the kids missed out on visiting with Santa at the annual Knights of Columbus Christmas party this year, we decided to take them somewhere special to see the big guy. We schlepped it all the way to St. Charles to Santa's Wonderland at the Bass Pro store.

We wouldn't ordinarily go so far out of our way for something like this, but with the promise of games and other activities in addition to the awesome atmosphere and FREE pictures with Santa, we thought it would be worth it. The kids' most favorite part were the shooting games they had there.

Seriously, they could have totally gone without glimpsing Santa at all and been just fine. :)

The girls wanted to color pictures, but right behind them other kids were crafting Santa Clauses out of fishing bobbers. We were at Bass Pro, after all, haha.

I was so impressed with the backdrops that they had here, and seriously, you can't beat a free picture with Santa in such a beautiful setting!

This was one of my favorite pictures of the whole night, and I can't even take credit for it. That would be owed to Reagan. :) He was taking pictures from up in his daddy's arms.

In the end, Evie was the only one we could convince to sit on Santa's knee - and we drove all that way. Grace was "too shy" and Reagan clinged to me like a little spider monkey.

It was a fun night out!

Saturday evening was date night which included making a couple of stops to pick up Christmas gifts. Holy moly - every single store was InSaNe. Made me thankful for online shopping, which accounts for about 90% of the gifts that we bought this year. Seems like everyone realized, "Oh yeah, it's Christmastime" and rushed out all at once to do their shopping, haha. The planner in me would get hives if I started this late. :)

And finally...this guy showed up last night.

Apparently he had heard we were all sick and was waiting until we were better to show up. Don't want to bring those germs back to the North Pole, after all.

The kids had been waiting (and waiting and waiting) in anticipation of Moe's arrival this year. Evie asked me every day if I thought he would show up soon or not. She was SO excited when he knocked on our door yesterday. Gracie...slept through the whole thing. But seriously, this couldn't be put off any longer. My kids were about to explode. Grace was happy to wake up later and see that a gift had been left for her. :)

Moe game bearing our Christmas pj's, as he does every year.

All three of the kids were jumping around and excited this morning to see that Moe had moved and brought them a gingerbread house to put together. For real, even I didn't expect them to be SO into it - even Reagan! Makes me feel even worse that it took so long for him to arrive. :)

None of my children are morning people at all, but they were all super happy and in good moods today. Sure hope that their enthusiasm lasts all the way through Christmas. That elf really is magical, after all!

Eric is flying to Denver this evening and he's home with us again today until he leaves. I'm getting really spoiled having him around. Not ready for this festive weekend to come to an end just yet! I truly think we've made up for some lost time, and I'm so thankful we were able to make some memories this weekend. Hope your weekend was swell, too!


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Hi again,

Sent my comment a wee early there. Sorry about that. I have commented a few times before on your blog. You might remember me. I am the Jewish mama with 5 littles. Anyway, I was wondering about your Christmas pageant at your school. It's a public school, right? Do they still call it a Christmas pageant and sing Christmas songs? What do the kiddos who don't celebrate Christmas do? Pretty sure there aren't too many Jews out there, but surely there are Asians or Indians who aren't Christian. I'm really interested in this. Out here on the east coast, everything is very religion neutral. Holiday pageants and the like. And since we homeschool, I've never really had to deal with it anyway. Thanks! Caroline

Adrien said...

Hi Caroline! Yes, everything is called "Christmas" this and that here. This isn't an issue (yet) in our community, because as you might notice from the pictures there is so little cultural diversity where we live. In our community and surrounding communities I can only think of one place of worship that doesn't celebrate Christmas...a tiny Jehovah's Witness church. I know that my daughter is learning about other cultures and their celebrations in her kindergarten class, but it's really not something they see much of here at all.


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