Monday, February 17, 2014

Christmas 2013

Yes, we just celebrated Valentine's Day. I think I haven't posted any Christmas photos due to the sheer number of them. So, let's just do a photo dump, shall we? Just scroll through quickly if you are bored. 

First, came the decorations. She was just as into them as last year. A few minutes after this photo was taken, she broke one of the "kissing angels" my Mom painted as a child. I teared up - because they were broken - and because I wished I could just let her play with them. I love that she loves these things so much.

 Daddy gave me an early present - an external flash. It is fun experimenting, but I still have lots to learn. We had a hot cocoa bar and let her indulge in hot chocolate several nights before Christmas. This has been a hard habit to break!

She was a good subject while I practiced with flash settings. I promise - I am not including all the shots!

A week before Christmas we went on the Christmas Train to Elbe with Grandpa Brad and Grandma Deanie. This was our present from them. It was very fun, but we would recommend a different train experience! Google it and read the reviews - not the prettiest scenery!

But, it was fun spending time together. More practicing with my flash (I have a lot more practicing to do).

So glad this one turned out! Santa was on the train. Elyse was so excited to see him - and I'm thrilled my photo came out. Thank you to Pic Monkey for making this look like we went to a professional!

Our third annual (I think?) day at Kelly's before Christmas doing a cookie exchange. We had fun snacks and the kids did Christmas crafts - so fun!

Tree is decorated - we are ready!

Christmas ended up being one giant open house - which was so fun for us. We love opening our home to our family and friends. Uncle Jordan and Alison were the first to come. They showed up Christmas Eve morning bright and early for breakfast casserole and homemade cinnamon rolls. They brought Elyse this present - and then patiently put it together for her!

This picture is SO BRAD. Love it!

After they headed out, we went over to Grandma Jo's. She wasn't feeling well, so wasn't coming over - so we took gifts to her.

Love this.

And then that night.... Jaxin and Elyse cuddling.

Poor buddy - Carson had strep throat and couldn't come, so he and Keri stayed home. But, it was so fun getting to Face-time with him! Corey even had to leave early as Jaxin came down with a fever too. I tell you, illnesses tend to come with the holidays in these parts!


We have enjoyed doing appetizers the last few years. We tried something new. MAN - was this good. Smoked onion dip (onions smoked on the Trager) and homemade taquitos. This was delish!

Dad nailed it! We had just seen Frozen and Elyse was so excited to get the doll!

And do you think she loved the dress from Grandpa Jay too? Uhhhh. Yeah.

 Pretending to be a doggy.

 She is really into this little computer from Aunt Sue and Uncle Scott.

Not sure what I'm doing? Mom thing?

These pictures didn't really turn out - but they are still fun!

Santa came!!! He always brings just one unwrapped gift and fills the stockings with special things.

She was so excited to see what Santa brought her!

And to this day if you ask her about Santa - she will tell you - "Santa ate all the cookies! And the 'nilk' too!"

Not sure what to think about those stockings.

After naptime, Tom, Molli, Tanner and Maggie came too!

I had made a big batch of sugar cookies - to frost with Carson on Christmas Eve and to frost with the kids on Christmas Day. So, we had a lot to take care of!

Yes, she did.

We had Christmas puzzles and games to color and play with. It was fun - even if you can't tell by the photo!

We had a spiral ham, cottage potatoes, green salad and apple pie. It was a great time!

Hope your Christmas was special - Happy FEBRUARY!

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