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Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Christmas Eve/Day

Christmas Eve started a little early for us.  Tim's parents came down on the day before the night before Christmas and the kids were more than a little excited to get started on presents.  They stayed for a long time and played with the kids - our kids are lucky to have such involved grandparents on both sides.  

They brought Ruby a Snow White dress and she has barely taken it off since then.
She also tells us to call her Snow White

Several years ago we copied the tradition of steak and shrimp on Christmas Eve.  I used to make a big dinner with all lot of specialty items.  Last year, I decided to keep the steak and shrimp, but let Outback do the cooking instead.  Best decision ever.  We spent Christmas Eve day with the babies (the big kids were with their mom this year), then met my parents and Cory for dinner.  The food was delicious and the company was even better. 

As we were driving home from dinner, Luke said that he wanted to go see the lights - he insisted we see the ones that we had seen in Cory's truck.  It took me a bit to figure out that he meant the lights at the Spanish Fork Festival.  We had gone to dinner pretty early so we decided we still had time to go see the lights.  I was surprised to see so many people there - they were obviously on to something since it turned out to be a great way to wrap up our evening.

In preschool Luke had made a container of reindeer food.  Luke has been so excited to use it and went straight to the table to get it as soon as we got home.  I loved watching him experience the magic of Christmas Eve as he carefully sprinkled the food and talked about Santa being able to find our house.

The kids were excited to put on their Christmas jammies, especially when they saw that their daddy had the best jammies of all.  It took a little bit to get everyone settled, but thankfully they are still small enough that they fell asleep pretty quickly and stayed that way all night. 

The next morning everything looked especially magical in our living room.  Santa even left a note behind and the kids thought it was so funny that he had eaten our cookies. 

As a id, I loved the magic of Christmas morning - I have to say - it is actually even better to be a parent and watch my kids experience it.  We had so much fun opening presents.  We stopped after almost every gift to open and try out the toys and were rewarded with lots of smiles, giggles, and thank yous.

Talk about nostalgia, I was jealous of this toy.
There were lots of Hello Kitty gifts.

She put on the backpack and said that she is ready for preschool

The pirate ship plays music and every time Luke heard it, he would dance.
After breakfast and a little clean up, we packed up and headed to Santaquin to continue the celebration with my family.  We spent time playing in the snow, eating, and just enjoying being together.

Ruby asked for a Kleenex to wipe her dolly's nose. 

My parents are always so good to the kids.
This year everyone got tracksuits.  Perfect for Christmas lounging. 

Ruby loves to read stories to Juniper.

The best part of the night was when my dad got out his new game, Pie Face.  Basically, Russian Roulette with whipped cream.  It was hysterical to watch and I think was probably Santa's best new toy this year.  We ended the night laughing and happy which seems the best way of all. 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

December Part II

The fun in December has been pretty much non stop.  By the time January gets here we will need a break to recover.  To be honest, though, I will be a little sad to see it all come to an end - we have made so many fantastic memories.

On a Friday afternoon, the kids and I bundled up and headed to Thanksgiving Point to visit Santa's Reindeer.  Unfortunately Rudolph was on a break but his friends were still pretty cool.  We spent some time wandering around, shopping and having lunch.  I have so much fun with these little people of mine.

While the little ones were at Thanksgiving Point, Tim went to Ogden to hang out with Erika and Clark.  They said it was super cold, but totally worth it for the stunning views.

Tim also spent a little time in downtown Ogden looking at the lights.

Grandpa and Grandma Broadbent have the best tradition - some time during December they take the grandkids to the mall for a Christmas extravaganza.  Luke is so happy that he is big enough to be included.  This year included lunch, time with Santa, shopping for the giving tree, and carnival type rides and games.  We are so lucky that Luke and the other kids get to have this kind of fun with their grandparents and cousins.

Just a little fun at nursery.

And in the bath.

A few weeks ago we got the kids boots, gloves and snow clothes and ever since, Luke has asked us over and over when it was going to snow so he could go outside and build a snowman.  Finally, we got a few inches.  Tim said that as soon as the kids up they wanted to get on their snow gear and head outside.  They played for hours - throwing snowballs, making snow angels, and generally just being amazed.  It took some serious convincing from Tim to get them back inside the house.

I'm pretty heartbroken over the fact that Jesse is leaving me and going to London for Winter semester.  I am also super jealous that she will get to live in and experience such a great city. Between finals, packing, etc. she was super busy before she left.  However, she has her priorities straight and made sure that she made time for one last sushi date.  After a fantastic dinner, we took advantage of the opportunity and paid a visit to Santa.  This is one of my favorites of the season. 

I continues to be amazed at Luke's teacher Miss Nikki and all that she does for his pre-school class. They had a Polar Express party and then invited their families for a program where they sang some Christmas favorites.  Luckily, grandma was able to rearrange an appointment and come to watch.  I know that I am completely biased, but seriously, Luke was about the cutest thing I have ever seen.  I love watching him interact with his friends, and try so hard to follow all of the instructions for each song.  He has a two week break from school and I think he is really going to miss it. 

Luke brought home a present for us that they made in class - the first project present I have ever received.  I nearly burst with pride and happiness. 

Tim's mom worked hard to make arrangements for us to have a new family picture, and a family Christmas party on the same afternoon.  All of the kids, big and small, were great sports and made it easy on the photographer.  Hopefully Gayle was able to end up with a great picture - this is the  first time that all of the family has been together in several years so she took advantage of the one day when everyone could be there. Of course, while we were waiting for our turn to get placed, there was time for some shenanigans.  

Because we don't see some of this family as often, my kids usually start out a little shy.  It didn't take Dave very long to win over with a trip to see the horses. 

We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening at the Whitesides eating soup, playing games and acting out the nativity.  Luke and Ruby were so impressed with their parts, they still talk about being a shepherd and an angel. 

The next night we had the Broadbent Hancock Christmas party.  Seriously, my kids are starting to expect some type of party every few days.  One of the highlights of the evening was the race track that my cousin LeeAnn built.  She brought Lego kits for the boys to build their own car, then everyone could race as often as they wanted. They planned several other games that kept everyone laughing and entertained.  Most of the adults were content to just watch and visit. 

One of the big entertainment events of the month was the release of a new Star Wars movie.  We were lucky and got an invitation from my boss to help with some marketing and attend a showing with him.  He went all out with a completely creep costume to celebrate the return of the force. 

I posted a lot of the photos that Cory took from our annual Riverwoods/Santa trip.  I found some more pictures on Tim's phone to add to help remember the occasion. 

December,  you are definitely treating us right.