Saturday, December 25, 2010

At Six Months

Dear Munchkin,

You are half of a year old!  I remember, on the day you were born, a nurse said to me, "her half birthday will be Christmas Day."  I remember thinking, gosh, that's a long way off.  It came so fast!  You have grown form a sweet little infant to our sunshine girl.  You are full of personality!  So smiley and loving.  You love giving us kisses.  You continue to be known as the best baby that ever was.  Sleeping all night long, never a complaint, and going with the flow.  If I had to compare your personality to anyone in our family, I'd say you are most like your Mimi.

You are growing, girl.  15 pounds, 2 ounces and 26 inches long at your last checkup.  You are still petite, wearing 3-6 month clothes and just barely a size three diaper.  You are enjoying a bunch of new foods, yogurt, blueberries, and baby rice cakes.  You have been running your mouth, saying dada, baba, nana, mama, and blowing raspberries all day long.  You are finally sitting up on your own and are getting close to crawling, though I'd be happy to have you be a bit behind on that one. 

We took you photo shoot out of the studio this month, partly because it was difficult for us to get there with so much going on and partly because we had some beautiful weather for winter!  You are growing up too fast, my love, but we are enjoying watching you as you take in the world. 

Christmas Day: Part 2

 We're still at it...

...and apparently this guy was thrilled!  Haha!  After brunch, we got down to the business of opening all those gifts.  It took us well into the afternoon.  I even had to start cooking dinner in between rounds.

This kid got more trains than I think he'll ever know what to do with...

...I got my PW cookbook...

...Gigi snuggled up on the 'Munchkin'...

...'The Hubs' got the golf club that will (hopefully) improve his game...

...I modeled the joke present from Uncle Michael that I actually love...
...Uncle Michael got down to the business of assembling all those train tracks...
...Pop snuggled up on the 'Munchkin'...
...Just when we thought we were done with opening gifts, Grandma came and spoiled us even more...

...the newest Huskies fan played in an old favorite... old Thomas fan played with a new toy...

...I helped 'Munchkin' open her presents...she was behind because she had to take a nap...

...and after all that unwrapping, she needed another one...

...I swear, I made a huge Christmas dinner but, only captured the most important part...Carmel Apple Cheesecake!...

...and we finished off the evening with more present unwrapping with Uncle Mickey and Lisa...
...we were exhausted!...

...but somehow had energy to play with our new toys way past bedtime!

Thanks, family, for such a wonderful Christmas.  It couldn't have been any better!  I can't wait to do it all again next year.

Christmas Day: Part 1

 I had to break this post up.  I just had to.  Christmas was such a wonderful day and we celebrated from the moment we woke up until way past our bedtime.  Therefore, there are a bagillion pictures that I want to share and I can't possibly do it all at once.  So, without further ado, Christmas Morning...

'The Boy' creeped into our room on Christmas morning and asked to climb in our bed to watch cartoons.  That's right...we have the kid who forgot about Santa coming.  We didn't say anything for awhile and were able to get showers and make ourselves somewhat presentable for the camera.  We soon reminded him that Santa had come and he was so excited to come down and see his presents.  'The Hubs' had a hard time keeping 'The Boy' upstairs so I could take pictures and make coffee. 

 Here they come...

 He was so excited!

 Santa set up a new train track under the tree and 'The Boy' played with it for a bit before tearing into his other presents.

 Not such a great picture of 'Munchkin' in front of her new Laugh and Learn Playhouse.

 'The Hubs' read Santa's letter to the kids.  'Munchkin' just wanted it in her mouth.

Present time...

He got his Shake-Shake Bridge.  Thanks, Santa. 

 She really loved eating the wrapping paper.

 The kids got me a Lisa Leonard Mommy necklace.  It was, by far, my favorite gift.

Gigi, Pop, and Uncle Michael came to the house around 1030 and we still hadn't finished opening all of our presents.  They added to the pile.

 I mean really, can we say spoiled?

  This year was the first that we hosted Christmas.  I wanted the kids to have Christmas in their home and not have to leave all of their new toys.  I also knew how much stuff they'd be getting and no way was I lugging it all home.  It was a lot of work but I loved every second of it.  We took a break from unwrapping and had a nice brunch as soon as my family arrived.

 I set up a little coffee bar.

 This is what happens when you let your kid help with the gingerbread house. 

 Hot chocolate and peppermint whip cream.

 Always have to have a bowl of mandarin oranges.

 The spread

Our place settings, complete with the traditional Whitman's sampler.  Thanks, Mom.

We had a lovely brunch and then it was on to more present time...

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve

A few months ago, I told my mom that I wanted to host Christmas Day at my house this year.  I wanted the kids to be able to stay with all of their new toys and not have to worry about getting the whole family (and a bunch of gifts) out the door by 10 am.  She wasn't too thrilled with the idea because she still wanted to host some kind of Christmas at her house.  So we compromised.  I did get Christmas (brunch and dinner) and she had us over for a lovely, New Jersey style, Christmas Eve lunch.

New Jersey style meant Christmas food the way we grew up.  Ham sandwiches, potato salad and cheese and salami.  Followed up by Christmas cookies.  The idea sounded so good but I remember it all tasting better back in Jersey.

The yummy spread.  It was very good but we have broadened our culinary horizons since leaving the good old Garden state.

Uncle Michael's turkey because he doesn't eat pig.  He didn't want his meal to be left out of the photo so I gave it a close up.

'Munchkin' hung out in her swing and enjoyed playing with the birds.

After lunch, we had some business to attend to.  'The Boy' had to prepare for Santa's big arrival.  We had letters to write and treats to make.  We talked it out, and decided that Santa would be getting enough cookies on Christmas Eve.  We decided to make him a special rice krispie treat.

Of course it was a train...what else?

'The Boy' had so much fun helping and more fun sucking the icing out of the tube.
He would not let go!

Meanwhile, this one worked on her sitting skills.  She's so close!

Hanging out with Uncle Michael.

After I cleaned up a layer of icing off the kitchen counters, we settled in front of the tree to open a couple of gifts.  A tradition growing up was to get pj's on Christmas Eve to wear for that night.  My mom carried on the tradition for the kiddos.

My mom's beautiful tree.

She'll eat anything these days.

Thanks for my Talking Toby, Gigi and Pop.

Opening ornaments.

When we were opening presents, the doorbell rang and Uncle Michael got a package.  Turned out to be a book he had shipped tomy parents house.  I love his enthusiasm for education.

We wrapped things up at my parents house and thought we would be able to head out to church but realized we had missed the last service.  Oh, well.  The Johnson's headed down to Fallbrook to 'The Hubs' Aunt's house for Christmas Eve dinner. 

 The kids exchange gifts with their cousins.

'Munchkin' got to meet her Great-grandma Meagher for the first time.

We had a fun night visiting with 'The Hubs' family.  We had leave a bit early though.  We had to get home to prep for the big man's arrival.