Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Holiday Wrap-up

Oh yes I did! We have a tradition of opening one present on Christmas Eve, and that present is always a new pair of jammies. This Christmas I thought it would be too funny if we all had matching p.j.'s! I made everybody open them at the same time, then we all jumped into them. We were colorful to say the least! We drank hot chocolate and read the Christmas story from the bible. Then it was off to bed (for some of us at least).
 Cookies and milk for the big man were devoured, he must have made it!
 The kids got up nice and early, Mrs. Clause had only about 2 hours sleep (note to self-start wrapping sooner!), and the unwrapping began!
The girls were excited about their new robes, slippers and hat.
 After the unwrapping melee, it was so nice to be able to go to church. It was a lovely Christmas service and we were all in black and red.
That evening we had our "fancy" dinner. Prime rib, potatoes, North Pole broccoli, salad and homemade roles, good stuff.
 My younger brother, Andy and his lovely girlfriend, Alicia joined us.

 Another tradition we have are Christmas crackers. It's fun to find them each year and this year they matched my china perfectly! 
The best part about crackers are the goofy crowns that everybody wears.

It sure was a beautiful season. It came much too fast for me and is gone just as quickly too. I'm grateful to have time just to be with family and friends and celebrate the birth of our Savior. Perfect.
Hope your holidays were wonderful too!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 2

We had family pictures taken for our Christmas cards this year. They were done by the fabulous Melissa Thompson.
They turned out beautifully, but I have to say there is nothing like getting your picture taken to start getting those New Year's resolutions going, sheesh!
My little brood!
 Sam (14)
 Sophie (11)
 Maggie (8)
Charlotte (3)
 Here is the finished card! Some people might not think it's fun to address cards, but I love the process. I had some little helpers and we got them all sent.  I love receiving cards too. It's so fun to see other styles and the pictures. I put them right in my Christmas tree card holder so we can all enjoy them!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 3

Yesterday was Chris and my 15th wedding anniversary! It's a big one, but we celebrated small. With Christmas, work, a birthday and four kids that's about all we can do these days. What were thinking getting married at Christmastime?  I will just keep Paris in my dreams.
I am so grateful to be married to this man. He is my best friend. A great father and provider. An all around boy scout. And so darn handsome! I'm one of the lucky ones.
 We went to Simply Fondue restaurant in San Juan Capistrano. Here is our self-portrait. We had a nice time and closed the restaurant!
Happy anniversary honey, I love you!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 4

Yesterday was my little Charlotte's birthday! She turned the big age of 3. It's not easy to have a birthday around Christmas as I'm sure some of you know.
  But it's nice that she's still little and does not have any big expectations (yet!). At her request we had a donut breakfast via Krispy Kreme and then had a big night out planned.
We headed to Fashion Island in Newport Beach! They have a fabulous big Christmas tree, good eats and shopping. Well, of course on the way there Charlotte fell asleep in the car. So we put her in the stroller and went to California Pizza Kitchen for dinner. Then Daddy was supposed to be coming up from work in San Diego but we couldn't figure out what was taking him so long. Turns out he had gone to the wrong CPK, 20 minutes away! So we finished up, Charlotte woke up, we took this quick pic and headed back home. So much for the tree and fun shopping. But that's life right?

It was time to party! Charlotte wanted an ice cream cake and blew out her three sparkly candles. Then it was onto present opening. It all worked out and she was a happy girl.
I'm so grateful for this little squirt and the joy she brings to our family. Celebrating her birthday adds to the Christmas fun every year.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 5

Do you have an Elf on the Shelf? We've had our little sprite named Link for about 5 years. He has definitely become one of those traditions that the kids love. If he "forgets" to go check in with Santa and is in the same place the next day, they are none too happy I tell you! 
I usually just move him to different places everyday, but some people out there get so creative with it!
Check out this fun eBook that Amy Locurto published on her blog for some really fun ways to sneak that little elf around.
How cute is this marshmallow bath? I am totally going to try some of these! My kids will wonder what got into their little elf. I would love to hear more ideas of what kind of mischief your little elf is getting into, please share!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 6

I LOVE Christmas music! I think I start sneaking in some carols in October and by Thanksgiving it's all I listen to. I have some favorite albums that I remember from my childhood like Andy Williams and Barbara Streisand. But I also have newer favorites like Celine Dion and Linda Eder.
This year I bought the album of one our new favorite artists, Mindy Gledhill called Winter Moon. If you have not heard of her, check her out! My girls and I just love her. In fact we found out that she was going to be in the area for a little concert and I surprised Sophie and Maggie with tickets!

It was during the Queen Bee Market in Del Mar. It's a fun little local crafter's show. So we got to enjoy a fun night of shopping and then a bonus concert with Mindy Gledhill!
It was quite intimate and we were sitting four rows back so the girls were really excited. Afterward we were able to meet Mindy and take a quick picture. Sophie is as tall as Mindy! I also took a picture of the girls on the stage backdrop. Isn't that cut? Hundreds of little bow ties. I just love creative folks.
It was such a fun way to start the holiday and will be a wonderful memory with my girls. Thanks Mindy!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 7

Today I wanted to a share a little holiday inspiration via pictures of my cousin's house. Her house is amazingly beautiful and she really does it up for Christmas. Her home has even been in Christmas holiday home tours in her area.
I shot a few picts when we were there for Thanksgiving. I apologize for the picture quality on some, they were taken with my phone. :)
 The entryway tree and staircase.
The elegant living room.

Another shot of the living room mantle.
A shelf in the hallway, there are little details everywhere!
 Cute little snowman
 Family room mantle
 Hutch in the kitchen
Even the entertainment center was decked out.
Hope you've enjoyed some holiday inspiration!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas Fun Day 8

As usual the Christmas season is flying by! I keep waiting for those moments when I can stop and enjoy the season I am trying so hard to plan for. Like, I was planning on doing 12 Days of Christmas Fun here on the blog. But here I am what 4 days late! Oh well, I'll start today! You don't mind right? Without further ado, here is Day 8 of Christmas Fun.

 Sophie had her school Christmas concert last night. The kids sang and played instruments. Sophie played the flute which she just started a couple of weeks ago. (She said she had to fake it on some of the songs lol!) She is the tallest one on the back row. Next to that um, ghostly figure.
After the concert the kids and I decided to go look at holiday lights. We came to one of those homes that synchronizes the lights with music. My teenage son was so excited. He'd seen these on YouTube but not ever in real life. You tune in your car radio and listen along. His favorite part was the little marquis. You can send a text message and it will display it. They were also serve hot apple cider across the street!
Then we noticed people were going inside the house. We all jumped out of the car and scurried inside. So magical! We were welcomed by an upside-down Christmas tree!
Next up, a classic Christmas village. Love the snowman water tower.
The next room had a carnival village, a nativity and a Mickey Mouse village. The kids LOVED that one.
The last village was the North Pole village. I actually have a few pieces of this village, I didn't even know there were that many! I love the snowy mountain background. I mean this people know how to do it! Charlotte my almost 3 year old was just in awe. The last room had their regular Christmas tree and I would've gotten that pic but there was a family there taking their family picture!
I just love little accidents that turn out to be so much fun. Turns out this house actually has it's own website! If you are in South Orange County, here's the info: 25473 Nellie Gail Road, Laguna Hills, California. Web:  http://www.orangecountychristmaslights.com

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