Friday, December 2, 2016

Making Magic at Home

Our holiday plans were completely turned upside-down at the last minute this year. But I ask you...who needs Mickey Mouse when you can take a pic with a pancake?

Photo compliments of grandma Joan. ;)

Between trips to grandparent's houses and getting to go to the movies and do other fun things, the kids don't seem to be missing much. We can make our own magic right here at home! And there is no better time of the year to do that than right now. 

Last night we had a MUCH needed family night. Nothing seems to turn out as we plan anymore, so it was no shock that when we took the kids to see Santa that the line was so long we decided to skip that part and just enjoy all of the rest of the festivities. Bass Pro always has such a fun set up for Christmas with their "Santa's Wonderland." The kids had fun playing and making crafts, and then we packed up to check out some lights!

Note the look on Eric's face. He loves this stuff, can you tell?

This is Gingy, Grace's gingerbread girl who is supposed to accompany our family on fun things we do for the holidays. :)

Eric. :D 

Every few days they change up the free crafts that they have available. While we were there, the kids were able to color Christmas canvases - right up the big girls' alley!

Charlotte wanted to RUN here, there, and everywhere.

This moose talks, which the kids and I found to be funny and Eric thought was extremely creepy. I didn't even notice when I was taking this picture, but Grace snuck some "snow" home with her in her pocket. "I was just trying to bring home some memories, mom!" We got to have a real Full House moment this morning when I explained to her that it wasn't ours to take and that "If every kid brought home some of the snow, there would be none left!" Oh brother. :)

Of course, it's not a trip to Bass Pro without checking out the fish in the giant tanks.

Charlotte was mesmerized. :)

I tried to get a couple of pictures with the kids before we left, but Eric was distracting the little ones and this was the best we could do...child photography skills, once again. 

Mom life! :D

Soon we were bundling back up to enjoy the second leg of our evening. Just ten minutes from our house is O' Fallon's "Celebration of Lights" at Fort Zumwalt park. It's very much like the Shrine for those of you who are familiar, but with a lot more colorful lights and Christmas displays. Also like the Shrine, it's $10 for regular vehicles and definitely worth seeing if you are in the area!

Different churches and local businesses sponsor certain areas of the park to create displays. There is everything from manger scenes to popular cartoon characters like minions and the Peanuts gang...Santa and his elves are around and even superheroes. The kids really enjoyed it! 

Later this month there are a couple of nights where no cars are allowed and you can come and walk through the displays. Weather permitting, I think that would be really neat!

We grabbed a quick bite to eat to bring home with us after this. We pulled into the driveway, and a few of the kids raced ahead while Eric and I juggled food and bags and coats and kids...then suddenly Gracie came bursting out of the front door and exclaimed to the entire neighborhood,


She was a little bit excited about it.

He must have snuck in while we were gone! Our December 1 tradition remains alive and well. 

This cutie is busy soaking up this new life of his...welcome to Christmas, little dude. It's fun, right? :)

New jammies for all!

Charlotte Rose - such a stinker. She would rather be seeing what's going on behind the camera. But she's got the whole "cheese" thing down cold. 

It was a very full and very fun evening that was just what the doctor ordered, and we were never more than about 20 minutes from home. :) Today would have been the day that we were getting home from vacation, so I think I can officially take off the veil of mourning now, haha! I looked at Eric last night and said, "For the first time this week I can honestly say that what we did today was more fun than what we had planned to be doing." And that's very would have been a full day of driving for us yesterday. I'll take the day we had instead. ;)

Hope you all are having a great season so far! Happy weekend!

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