Christmas Eve

Well, better late then never! Christmas Eve is a very fun, but busy day for us. We start out with brunch at my parents. Everyone comes and we enjoy good, food, company and my favorite Mimosas!
Following brunch we all played Headbandz which was pretty entertaining.

My parents with the three boys.

After a great morning we headed home to relax a bit before church and dinner. The kids sprinkled their Reindeer food on the lawn.

Before we knew it, we needed to get dressed and head to church. The kids sing on stage every Christmas Eve. You can see Jax is right up front.

And my shy guy in the back.

It was a great service, and poor Jax was so tired he passed out cold for the second half of it.

From church we headed to Mike’s Mom’s house for Christmas Eve dinner.

We had a great time with everyone and the kids were of course super excited they got to open a few presents.

After a great family evening it was time to head home and get ready for Santa’s arrival! The boys hung their stockings.

Set out the cookies, chocolate milk, and carrots for Santa and his reindeer.

Posed in a few more pictures by the tree and then it was finally time for them to head to bed!

In some ways I enjoy Christmas Eve more then Christmas Day. I love that we get to spend quality time with both sides of our family, there isn’t the stress and rush of it actually being Christmas, and the excitement and anticipation is so very thrilling. The special time with the boys is going by so quickly!! I try to enjoy everyone minute, which is why there are less pictures and posts as I am doing my  best to live in the moment rather then always documenting it.
I will get the Christmas Post up by the end of the week!

Two nights before Christmas we helped the boys decorate Gingerbread houses. Oh what fun we had.

We all got into decorating and surprisingly enough Mike makes an excellent gingerbread construction worker.

The boys had a lot fun with all the candies.

They both did a great job!

It was messy, but worth it!

The funniest part was watching the candies disappear from the houses over the next week.

Pre-Christmas Fun

There is always so much I want to get done before Christmas every year and this year was no different. My goal this year was to focus on the important things like quality time with each other, and not be so caught up in shopping and gifts. I have to say I did better then I have ever done and we enjoyed a wonderful holiday season.
Decorating the tree always makes the holiday season seem real, at least to me, and the boys while they liked putting the ornaments on the tree enjoyed playing in the box more.

The weekend before Christmas we had tickets to the Redskins Game and while it was an icky day we made the best of it.

We had to tailgate in the van due to the rain, but the boys didn’t seem to mind. Mike was less then excited when me and the boys got sushi for our tailgating. I kind of agree, not very tailgatish, but well it works!

We enjoyed family game night, with martini’s of course:) We played Christmas Monopoly and Jax crushed us!

Florence was on my team, we lost.

I had kept seeing this farm thing advertised so with the weather being as warm as it was we checked it out one night. It was a great family night and we all enjoyed it, but I am not sure we would go again unless it was as warm as it was that night. There was a fun hayride, and then we got free hot cocoa and cider.

With our drinks we sat around the lovely “bonfire”

It really was a great night and we laughed at how simple and fun it was. I think we sat around the “bonfire” for a good 45mins just enjoying the atmosphere, warm weather and each others company. You really can’t ask for much more then that!

On the colder days there was lots of cuddling
The dogs enjoyed the couches more then they are suppose to.

Jax had a great time with his friends at a school mate’s birthday part and I enjoyed catching up with the other Moms.

We enjoyed  some great dinners

And then we laughed when we spent so much at Wegmans this year that we received a lovely gift basket and gift card.

Life is what you make of it, and we do our best to make it a great!

Ethan started playing the Cello at the beginning of the school year and has really taken to it and enjoys playing. We have enjoyed watching him learn to play from plucking, to actually using a bow. He was super excited about his first concert, but I won’t lie, I think we were more excited then he was. They had  dress rehearsal for the school that day and I was there with tears in my eyes (I’m such a dork) and enjoyed every second of it.
This is a picture from the dress rehearsal. He was so hard to see as they have the advanced strings sitting in front of the beginning strings and that made it even harder.

That night I insisted on a few picture before the concert.

So blurry, but I still love it!

My parents met us at the house so we could head to the concert together.

And after a few more pictures it was time to go.

Mike had won the silent auction for a  reserved parking space and front row seats and I am so glad he did, because the place was packed!

Judy met us there and we were fortunate to find seats together for everyone.

We were so excited when they started filing in.

There he is, my little cello player all ready to go!

The concert was fantastic! You could just barely see him while they were playing. Below is a short video clip, and you can see him stand up and bow at the end.

Ethan with Nana after the concert!

And much to my surprise Uncle Patrick and Aunt Tina showed up, and while there were no seats they were able to enjoy the concert from door entry. It meant so much that they came!

We are so proud of Ethan and all of the hard work and time he puts into practicing. I can’t wait till the Spring Concert!

Cookie Decorating

Growing up we always had cookie baking day sometime around Christmas. I love sugar cookies, and was thrilled when we got to my parents house last weekend and my parents were listening to Christmas music and cutting out sugar cookies. They were even using the cookie cutters we used when I was little. Funny how some old cookie cutters can bring back such wonderful childhood memories. When the cookies were finished baking and we had made some icing it was time to decorate.

The boys had fun, but honestly I think me and Mom enjoyed it the most.

I couldn’t think of a nicer way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

It’s hard to believe there is less then one week until Christmas! The year has flown by! Mike, Me, and the boys found ourselves at the mall later in the day on Black Friday, and what to our wondering eyes did we see? No line for Santa and an opportunity. I ran into Gap and bought the kids shirts (50% off) we changed them in the hall and enjoyed walking right up to Santa. With no line it meant he took more time with boys and spent a few minutes talking with them. It was adorable and so nice that we didn’t have to wait in line!

Last weekend after everyone was done recovering from their virus we headed to Macy’s so the boys could write their letters to Santa and drop them in the big Red Mail Box.

Jax did such a great job writing his letter.

Ethan being in 3rd grade did not need any help at all. He’s so cute!

Once they were complete it was time to mail the letters in the Big Red Magical Mailbox

I swear they write the letters just so they can drop them in the big mailbox.

Jax’s turn

I love the traditions that the four of us have and look forward to them every year!

Last Friday I got a text from Mike that he wasn’t feeling well. About an hour later I called to check on him and his secretary said he had left and looked awful. Mike never leaves work sick, not to mention they had their holiday party scheduled for later that day. I knew it was bad. About 20 minutes after Mike was home, and throwing up, I got the dreaded call from the school nurse. Yep, Jax had thrown up in class and felt awful! I flew to the school (it still took 40 min) and picked him up. We live a mile from the school, literally, and Jax didn’t even make it home before he puked in the car. UGGHHHH!!!!  He passed out almost instantly after getting home, and I was able to tend to Mike. He was running a 101.4 and looking pretty bad. To his credit he worked from bed the entire day.  Now the question is why was he on my side of the bed!!! I was able to get a few errands run while Jax was passed out. The two of them spent a good part of the afternoon in bed.

Florence was a diligent nurse!

Jax came downstairs later that day and had several more vomiting episodes.
Florence was so sweet and stayed with him the entire time!

My poor baby was so sick! He threw up 6 times, but never ran a fever.

Good thing it was a very quick moving bug and everyone felt better in the morning. Or so we thought… Ethan ended up with it and presented more like Mike,  high fever and not as much vomiting. He ended up laying around all day and I took him to Patient First that night just to be sure he didm’t have strep, and he didn’t.  By Sunday everyone was fine and I was fortunate not to get it!


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