I think Christmas and assorted activities kept us quite busy this year. One day it was Thanksgiving weekend and C was heard at a friend’s house saying “Why do you have your tree up so early?” (much to my embarrassment) and the next it seemed like it was Christmas day. G was gone for a week before Christmas (the 14-18) so that didn’t help either.
Leading up to Christmas we did several activities, including trips to a reindeer zoo/Santa visit, Santa pictures, Pacific Science Center/Winter Carnival at the Seattle Center (with a craft show visit for me), and C and G went to the Nutcracker. It was pretty cold the day of the zoo visit but that didn’t stop the girls and their friend from running around, writing letters to santa, and hamming it up.
Not too many pictures of other activities. Some cute shots of C pre-Nutcracker visit (I know—she picked G to go with her! I was a little sad/jealous, but they went out to lunch as well and did some Xmas shopping and G got so many compliments on C that he came home just beaming) but they are featured in our (hopefully) soon to arrive New Years cards (yeah, a little behind again this year) so I don’t want to spoil that. Although I guess I can show her Christmas dress (purchased with a Macy’s gift card that she got for her birthday—this is what she chose back in October!)
I also managed to squeeze in a fair amount of baking with two marathon sessions on nights that G was out of town, turning out Ginger Chocolate chews (the best, from an old MSL cookie issue), lemon cornmeal shortbread (old Fine Cooking [I think] cookie issue), and homemade marshmallows. C and I followed up with Peanut Butter Kiss cookies and she and G took plates around to several neighbors.
Later in the season C and I made cut out cookies (again from the Fine Cooking issue) both alone and with a friend of hers. In addition, I made cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning which were amazing. (Shown here pre frosting which didn’t look too good as I didn’t let the cream cheese soften enough. Tasted good though.)
In C’s honor we had Chocolate C for dessert on Christmas Eve and again for a dinner party a few days later. The former was waaaaay to alcohol rich (should you see stars after eating a piece of cake? I am thinking no. Also, depressing for G to be asked at the liquor store whether he wanted “nips or the flask”) but the second was pretty great (and the lady fingers didn’t stick to the pan as much). And although C didn’t eat much of either, she was quite proud to serve chocolate C to her friends. Kind of weird, I know. Although rumor has it that her friend M has been trying to make up a dessert named after herself now as well.
Christmas itself was kind of quiet and weird, as our first holiday on our own on purpose. (Last year we were at our house for Christmas day, but it was due to travel woes and we had no presents to open.) The girls left cookie and milk for Santa but did not wake up early (well, not extra early). We opened gifts in several waves, trying to include various relatives by Skype. At some point though M really cottoned on to this present opening thing and tore through all of hers and several of other peoples. I have just a handful of pictures from the day…
The latter picture shows C opening her Barbie Fairytopia Mermaidia playset, a plastic monstrosity that was the only thing she asked for from Santa, and which Santa (due to some miscommunication with a certain uncle) had to find on ebay at the last minute and pay exorbitant shipping fees to get one time…however she did almost weep with joy upon opening it, and then stared at the box with a glazed look for much of the day. Her seemingly favorite gift however is a megaphone like voice changer which makes one sound like a loud robot. Thanks for that Grampy. No really. M hasn’t played with all her toys yet (although C has played with most of M’s) but I think we really scored with a dog stuffed animal (she adores the concept of dog, hence the dog pajamas which she wore for Christmas).
All in all, I think everyone got what they wanted the most, we had a ton of time together as a family (C off of school and not attending any camps and G took time off of work) and did about 50% of my planned activities which puts us ahead of most years. Now, to just get those New Year Cards from the developer and address and mail them…next year I am thinking Happy MLK Jr. Day cards might be the way to go.