Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas - The Real Deal

Well, this has been a holiday of ups ... and downs, but in my heart I remain thankful. We've been hit hard - all three of us - by this season's germs. We literally haven't had one day in the last two months where one of us hasn't been sick. Elyse was sick Thursday morning, I got hit with it Christmas Eve morning and by Christmas Eve night - both Bill and I were violently ill. We did our best Christmas morning. It was easy to be cheered by our sweet little girl, so beautiful and happy with excitement.

This Christmas, I may have not gotten to eat anything for 48 hours, didn't get to share in the holidays at my in-laws and see my baby open presents with them, didn't get to take as my pictures, nor did I get to be my normal hostess hustle-and-bustle self on Christmas Eve. But, you know what? I have so many other sweet memories to treasure. I have the best husband ever. I got the best card from Bill. It is my new favorite - so sweet, I treasure each word. I have this beautiful, smart daughter for whom it is a joy to watch her grow. The way her eyes lit up when she saw the gifts from Santa in front of the tree is something I'll never forget. I am so grateful I prepared in advance for Christmas. I made all of the food for Christmas Eve the night before. All of my shopping was done on time and all of the gifts were wrapped. Although being sick was far from ideal, I was so thankful all of the work was done. Somehow I even felt OK enough to be able to take my daughter to Christmas Children's Service. She was so excited to dash through the pews with her cousin, Carson. It is all worth it. And if someone asks me if I had a good Christmas - my answer better be - YES!

I hope your Christmas was relaxing, that you felt love - no matter what that looked like. So, all that aside, here is a peek into this Christmas Season - photos from throughout the month of December.

Cousin Chelsey, her new babe, Adrion and Elyse.

What looks like a sweet little picture is actually Elyse taking a Christmas ornament hanger in her mouth like a fish hook. UGH!

Ornaments taste good evidently.

She likes to take ornaments off and bring them to us saying, "Thank you!"

Love to Grandma Betty!

So excited about her kitty cat pillow/blankie from Grandma Deanie and Grandpa Brad! She had to carry it over to the hearth so she could sit down and take a good look at her - so cute!

She LOVES opening presents. She'd get so excited!

This little xylophone was the hit - thanks, Grandma Betty and Grandpa Keith!


This was one evening I was rocking away with her and didn't even notice she'd fallen asleep, until Bill told me. Sweet girl.

Her favorite ornament from Aunt OJ. Beeker singing Ode to Joy.

Could this be my new favorite face?

Just a pause for thumb sucking!

Wilson is often not far away.

Christmas Eve with Uncle Corey.

Watching cousin Carson.

Wilson getting love from Uncle Scott.

Loves digging into those presents!

Look! Santa came!!

She went right to her tricycle and climbed on! Thanks, Santa!!

This present is really from Grandpa Brad and Grandma Deanie, but Santa delivered it for them! She sat in it and opened almost all of her presents!

Daddy put an Alpine sticker on it!

My pink Jeep and Beeker - what more could a girl ask for?

I had my settings wrong on my camera, but don't even care. LOVE this face!

Happy girl!

Sitting on Daddy's new bike trailer deciding whom to randomly call...

Another thumb break.

Glittery batons evidently taste good too.

Too bad I focused on the tree instead of the girl.

Blessings to You and Yours,

Bill, Courtney and Elyse

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Smile That Melts My Heart

Evelyn, AKA Gram-E, is very faithful about sending us a cellphone pic or video each Thursday when she watches Elyse. It always makes my day when I come back to my office after a meeting and get a little peek into my girl's day. Here is the Thursday picture that made my heart light up.

Oh, how I love her!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Mish Mash of Holiday Happenings

Thanksgiving turned out really nice this year. I wasn't sure how it would go with coming back from Hawaii right beforehand, my Grandpa passing away, etc. Corey, Keri and Carson came over to hang out early in the day and then went on to her family's for dinner. Grandma Jo did the same and we had a nice visit. Fred and Francie joined us for dinner and we had a lovely meal together - and they got one-on-one time with Baby Girl, which everyone enjoyed. We smoked the turkey again on the Traeger - and it was excellent. Very moist and really nice that it didn't tie up the oven. We'll definitely keep doing that!

I didn't take many pictures, but here is one I did get of Uncle Corey with Carson and Elyse watching a Sesame Street podcast with Adam Sandler and Elmo. One of Elyse's favorites.

The Sunday afterward we went to the Hoys for dinner. We had a wonderful meal of spring rolls. The fresh food tasted so good after the long weekend of heavy holiday leftovers. Elyse had a ball with the girls. Here is Rylee and Elyse.

Here is Ava too - they were so cute how they doted on her.

Wonderful evening with one of our favorite families. Thank you, Van, Vichet, Rylee and Ava!

Lights are up on our house and today was the day to get the tree. We went to our favorite tree farm (Schilter's) and Marcie joined us. Elyse loved dashing between all the trees.

Marcie found one just Little Missy's size.

The girls.

It was so muddy in spots!! I just had to show you!

Me and my babe. It was a little bright - forgive our squints.

I'll leave you with this. A new favorite shot of my sweet, Elyse.

Hope your December is happy!


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