Since the time we decided we would be staying in Texas for Christmas, I have been worried about not being able to make it compare to Christmases growing up, for both of us. Traditions are a serious business. People get very upset if traditions are broken. Luckily, Sam and I were not too caught up in the details of the holiday, and we were more into the spirit of it. We had a very busy month though. Looking back through all of these pictures, it was a great month. It was rare that we were just sitting around bored. Sam got home from work one day and asked me if I was trying to do a craft a day or something. I wasn't, but I was just much more creative this month. I loved being able to do whatever I wanted without worrying about breaking other peoples' traditions. I just got to make my own!
First, we bought our Christmas tree. It was kind of a crazy night where we went to three different places in a rush before I had to get to a YW Presidency meeting. We finally found a good tree, brought it home, I helped Sam carry it in, and then I left. The lights didn't get finished until two days later.
I could see us having two trees one day. Sam really wants real trees; I don't mind either way. However, I love decorating a pretty tree. But one day the boys will want to put their own ornaments on. For that day, Mommy will need her own tree.
It was kind of my pride and joy for the whole month.
Two years ago my mom made this advent calendar for me. It looks just like the one we had growing up (which she also made). We haven't been home for the whole month of December before but this year we got to hang up all of the ornaments! It was fun!
Alex got to decorate his own little tree.
Edison does not like being Santa.
The youth in our ward went on an awesome hayride to look at Christmas lights. It was a cold night, which I was glad about because it added to the feeling of it!
We had some friends over for dinner and a craft. We ended up going to the Thomson's for Christmas dinner.
Other friends came over a few nights later. For dinner and a craft again... We went to the Cannon's for Christmas Eve dinner.
Lily and her mom Kristi came over for lunch one day.
I was pretty hands-off with the gingerbread house this year. It ended up very Alex-ed.
I made little trees with our names on them so we could tell each person's stocking apart from the others.
We went to the gym on a Saturday and Santa was there! At this point, we had not told Alex a single thing about Santa so he had no idea what was going on.
More pictures from the Festival of Lights. We left our parking spot quickly so someone else could pull in. The boys loved driving around not buckled in.
We made a snowman and played Pin the Carrot Nose of the Snowman.
Rudolph came to Chick-Fil-A. Alex got his face painted to match and he loved it.
We drove around to see Christmas lights. Some people go all out!
Alex learned how to sing Jingle Bell Rock. Sometimes he loved it...
...Sometimes he hated it.
The boys have been very into the Christmas tree. Alex is pretty good about not touching it, but Edison swats at it every chance he gets.
It sure is fun to hang out under the tree though.
I was mostly worried about being forgotten. I wanted our families to at least be a little sad that we weren't there, since we were sad. We were not forgotten at all! We got so many Christmas cards! I felt very loved throughout the whole month and there was not a tear or any pang of loneliness from me!