Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas in the Big D

We had our last round of Christmases this weekend in Dallas with Justin's family. We went up on Friday morning and met Justin's mom for lunch at Chick-fil-A.
 
"I can't wait to see my Nana!"
After getting settled in at our hotel, we headed to Aunt Judy's house to hang out for a bit.

Aunt Judy has the privilege of the first picture with Andrew smiling. Congrats Judy!
 Jackson LOVED playing with Aunt Judy's new puppy, Roxy. Roxy liked him too!

After a delicious dinner with Judy and Jerry in downtown Dallas, we braved the cold, cold night (I think it was about 32 degrees and blustery) to go see the Chinese Lanterns at Fair Park.

The boys all bundled up!
It was awesome and so worth the cold!

Jackson's favorite part (not really) was the dinosaurs. Part of the exhibit were the near life-size animatronic very realistic displays. He was super excited about them as we were approaching and was checking out the brachiosaurus in awestruck wonder. And then they ROARED. Loudly. We all jumped when it started, and it was just too much for our little boy who was already out past his bedtime and therefore not feeling his bravest. He was terrified!

Sadly, my camera died halfway through, but it was so fun, despite the cold. Thanks, Aunt Judy, for such a fun experience!

The next day, we had plans to meet up with everyone at 2, so we had the morning to kill time in Dallas. We headed to Northpark and just browsed a bit. During our childless days, it used to be mine and Justin's day after Christmas tradition to go to Northpark. We would always see kids trying to scale these large, sloped planters and then slide down. It's the closest Northpark gets to a kids play area. I never imagined that my kid would someday join in the fun. But he was eager to try it and loved it!

 
That afternoon, we met up with the family at Judy's for a Mexican feast and exchanged our gifts. Uncle Cody finally got to meet Andrew!

Nana was happy to have all of her grands in one place, but as is common these days, Jackson didn't want to be in the picture. Stinker.

Nana, Kyndra and Andrew
 We all got to open some more wonderful presents!

Jackson was super excited about his doctor's kit!
We loved getting to see everyone for our belated, but just as special, Christmas celebration!
 
 

We are so blessed to have the opportunity to share the joy of Christmastime with all of our families!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Pajama Day

We declared the day after Christmas "Pajama Day" and did absolutely nothing! It was fantastic and just what we needed.
 
The boys enjoyed a little more quality time with Grammy and Pop until they had to leave after breakfast.




"Cheese!" with a mouthful of biscuits.
 We enjoyed playing with everyone's new toys!


And just plain enjoyed each other. =)

 
Pajama Day = new day after Christmas tradition.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas Day

While Jackson was sleeping, Santa came! 
 
 

As we hoped, he came straight to our room upon waking, snuggled for a bit, and then I was able to get in place in the living room to capture his reaction upon seeing his gifts.

Here's the video of his Christmas Morning reaction...I just love his giggles! He was so excited!


His castle! With dragons! Santa did well!

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Andrew liked his surprise from Santa as well!

After the initial surprise of the castle, Jackson noticed the plate of cookies we had left for Santa. 
Click to enlarge!
"Look, there's one left! Wait, just one? Santa ate all of them but one?! Oh well, can I have it?"
We then moved on to stockings!
Click to enlarge!


And we unwrapped presents!


Justin was excited about his Johnny Heisman shirt!


Jackson liked all of Andrew's toys. Luckily, Andrew doesn't mind sharing at this age!

He was pretty excited about this remote control Thomas the Train that Andrew gave him.

Andrew thought Christmas Morning was boring and fell asleep.
Jackson with all his presents.

Andrew with all of his presents--and hist first time sitting in the bumbo seat.

After opening presents, we had some special Christmas morning monkey bread. Jackson LOVES monkey bread.

Fresh from his little snooze, Andrew was excited when I told him Grammy and Pop were on their way!

We were so happy to get to spend Christmas Day with Grammy, Pop, Marc, Alison and Breelie.

Jackson and Breelie played together so well all day. They enjoyed this fun snowman rice crispy treat painting activity that Alison brought for them. So fun!

And we all enjoyed a lovely dinner. My first time to cook a ham! It turned out pretty good.
 
Jackson loves birthdays--the singing, the celebration and especially the cake. He really got into the fact that Christmas is all to celebrate Jesus' birthday. He and Breelie helped decorate the cake for Jesus.



Everyone sang Happy Birthday. The kiddos were happy to assist Jesus with blowing out his candles.


Jackson couldn't resist the urge to taste test the icing before we cut it and Marc got a good picture of my "Mom face" as I scolded him. Ha!
Yum!

This was our first Christmas day to spend at home ever, and it was an exceptionally perfect day. We spent the day together, surrounded by people we love, and were able take some time to remember the reason for the celebration.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Eve

We made it home on Sunday evening and worked to get everything ready so we could just enjoy Christmas Eve with our boys.
 
It was a beautiful day so we headed to the park. Jackson is becoming so much fun to play with! His imagination is exploding, as is his vocabulary to express all of his pretend play adventures.  
 



Andrew enjoyed a little time in the sunshine too.

After nap, we headed to the Christmas Eve service at church. These two little ones (and the guy behind the camera) make my heart so full!

After church, we ate some gumbo for dinner, then made our birthday cake for Jesus and cookies for Santa.
 
Jackson was supposed to be helping but he was too busy eating the candy off his gingerbread house!
 

 But he did enjoy his first experience with licking the beater!

After bath, we set out the milk and cookies for Santa. Even though Jackson had been a bit naughty during bath and told he wouldn't get to eat any cookies, Santa called and said that since it was Christmas Eve, he could have just one. ;)

Jackson was quite upset that Santa got all of the cookies and he got just one. Ha!

After getting Jackson to bed, I enjoyed some sweet snuggles with Andrew while watching A Christmas Story. It was a really perfect Christmas Eve.

Right after Justin and I had completed our Santa duties and were getting ready to go to bed, we heard Jackson get up. As I was tucking him back in, he looked up at me and said "I hear bells, mommy! You hear it?" Maybe so, buddy. Maybe so. =)