Thursday, December 30, 2010

Guest Blogging!

My dear friend Chelsea recently asked me, along with a few other friends, to write a guest post on her beautiful blog. Mine is up today, so go check it out! And while you're there, take some time to browse around on her amazing blog. She is a wonderful, creative mama to two adorable little boys. Thanks for the opportunity, Chelsea!

Christmas Re-cap

We had a lovely, busy Christmas this year. This time of year is so magical for me, and I hope that my boys catch onto that spirit as well. There are, of course, a few things I will do differently in the future, but not many. I think that instead of trying to talk about everything I will just share a few pictures.

Dressed in their adorable Christmas outfits from Gram.
All of us dressed up for celebrating.

The lovely glow of the tree on Christmas Eve, after all the presents are in their places.
This photo is actually from today, but we did indeed have a beautiful white Christmas this year.

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

One Week to Go!

One week until Christmas Day. We have been counting down the days around here with the boys' advent calendars, but I am still a little surprised that it has come up so fast. I have all my gifts bought and I am generally ready to go. Except for all the wrapping I still have to do, but that will happen. Still, I feel like it can't quite be Christmas yet. I have enjoyed the anticipation of it this year. Plus, I still want to spend a few more nights knitting in front of the tree. But I know Christmas will be here before we know it.

It will be so fun, though. They boys really get the whole concept, and they are so excited. We have lots of fun family activities planned (three sets of grandparents to visit, aunts and uncles in town, and our own family celebration as well) and I can't wait to watch the boys enjoy the festivities. Our next few days will be pretty mellow, but on the 23rd things start revving up here and we will be in full go-mode until the 27th. So, if I don't make it back here before then, have a lovely Christmas!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Saint Nicholas

Saint Nicholas made a visit to our house Monday. I have been wanting to start the tradition of celebrating Saint Nicholas day since Landon was a baby, but every year it didn't work out for some reason. This year I was determined to make it work, and had gifts ready to go a few weeks ahead of time. The boys set our their shoes Sunday night, and woke in the morning to find a few chocolate gold coins inside and a wrapped package on top. The packages contained books, and we set about reading them right away.

They were excited to have something small to celebrate before Christmas, and I had fun starting a new tradition. Although, next year I do think Saint Nicholas will have to bring some winter or Christmas books. I just think it will add to the feeling of the season a bit more. Also, I would like to do something like Chelsea and maybe make some handknit socks for them too. But that's the fun in starting a new tradition - you can change it a little bit to make it work for your family.

We have also been doing small Advent calendars (the ones made of paper where you open a little window every day), and it's been fun to talk every morning about which day it is and how many more days until Christmas. I have tried in the past to do much more elaborate Advent calendars, and they just didn't work out for us. Too much work for me and the kids didn't really care about them. I think this year we are doing it just right for their ages. It is so fun to see them getting caught up in the wonder and magic of this time of year!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Breakfast with Santa

Last Saturday morning my mother-in-law and I took the boys to breakfast with Santa. It was held at a very nice hotel in town, so we got all dressed up. The boys got served hot cocoa as soon as we sat down and they got to add their own marshmallows, sprinkles, and whipped cream. That was followed by a nice pancake breakfast. During the meal Santa came out and waved at the kids from a balcony. Landon was enthralled. The Spokane Childrens' Choir sang Christmas Carols throughout the meal, and I think that was Coleson's favorite part. After we were done eating we got in line to sit with Santa and have pictures done. Landon was in awe of being able to sit with Santa. The magic of the whole season was written all over his face when he got to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas. Coleson was not interested at all in sitting with Santa, but he did admire him from a distance. Landon was worried that Coleson didn't get to tell Santa what he wanted, but I assured him that Santa would know anyway. The experience was great, and I hope we can make it a yearly tradition. What a special morning!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Playing Together

Just in the last week or so my boys have really started playing together. Not just playing in the same space or with the same toys, but actually engaging in games together. Coleson has long adored his big brother, and probably would have loved to play with Landon long ago. But Landon has just recently realized that Coleson can play with him, not just get in the way. Yesterday and today they have chased each other around the house pushing large trucks, "radioing" each other, and occasionally smashing into each other and then laughing wildly. Landon "read" Coleson some of his favorite books yesterday, after graciously letting Coleson pick which ones to read. Today, Landon decided that they should play some of their favorite games that Tyson plays with them. He took Tyson's role, chasing Coleson around the house and tickling him if he caught him.

So, with all this playing going on around me I have been free to sit and knit, or to finish my coffee, or to browse through the magazine pile that grows steadily in my kitchen. It's nice really. I feel like they are really growing into neat little boys, and I feel like I am doing something right if they will play together like this. It's so fun to see them become brothers.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Here it is, the first day of December, and the fourth day of Advent. This morning I gave the boys their own little Advent calendars where you open the little windows each day to reveal a little chocolate inside. They were pretty thrilled. But at that moment I realized that in addition to those cute little calendars, I really should have also gotten out the nativity scene and the Advent wreath too. I want my boys to know that there is more to this season for us than little chocolates every morning (although I wouldn't complain about that either) and Santa with his band of reindeer (although they are currently quite fascinated with the reindeer aspect of Christmas).

So, while I was waiting to start the Christmas decorating until we could all do it together on a weekend, I think that while Landon is at school tomorrow Coleson and I will get out a few of our decorations. And when Landon comes home from school we will talk about them, and talk about our beliefs about Christmas and what it means to us. I love that they are so excited about Christmas and Santa and presents and reindeer but I want them to have the knowledge, too, that Advent and Christmas are a special time for other reasons.

I have struggled since Landon was born to piece together traditions for our little family from the traditions that Tyson and I each brought from our own families. Things that I thought would be fun or meaningful often didn't sit right with us (or completely failed). So, this year I want to keep it simple and let the kids and their excitement and awe about everything guide us. But I also want to start showing them and talking to them about how this season is more than getting gifts and looking at pretty lights. I don't know that much of what I say will stick this year, or even next year, but I feel like I at least need to do what I can to make this time of year magical and meaningful for our family. And I think this year I may finally get some things right with this whole Advent season.