Merry Christmas Memories

It is so hard to believe that Christmas has come and gone.  Each year I say the exact same thing – the holiday really goes by so quickly!

We had a very nice Christmas this year.  The only real downsides were that there was very little snow (I need it for that Christmas spirit kick), I came down with a cold about 2 hours after I was done work on Thursday, and the fact that Alex decided 2 days before Christmas that he would no longer like to sleep in his bed (post coming…).

On Christmas Eve our plan was to go to the children’s church service and then Matt’s parents for their family Christmas. Unfortunately about 2 mintues into our car ride, Alex fell asleep and as you know, waking a 3 year old can be dangerous. So sadly we had to skip church.

We had a wonderful meal with Matt’s family and everyone received lovely gifts.  One exciting thing happened while we were there… Santa made a surprise visit!  Santa comes pretty much annually and for the longest time no one could figure out who he was – but we now know 😉

We headed home later than I would have liked so we ended up missing putting out cookies and milk for Santa.  After Alex finally fell asleep (10:30ish – told ya he isn’t enjoying bed time), we got Christmas ready. Santa was bringing Alex a full sized hockey net so that had to be put together (note to self: do not set up hockey net in basement… not easy to get up through a stairway…), stockings were hung, and egg nog was enjoyed.  Sparky also climbed into Alex’s stocking so he could return to the North Pole when Santa arrived.   Once everything was set, the elves went to bed for a long winters nap.

Alex luckily slept in until 7:30, letting us sleep in too 🙂  Alex was so excited to see the tree when he came down the stairs! He was quite excited about the hockey net and his “motor  boat ride” toy.  We did have one  breakdown…

And unfortunately Alex won’t look at one of his new books – The Giving Tree.  He saw the back of the book when he first unwrapped it which has the author’s picture on it… seriously – could they not have chosen a more child friendly profile picture?  (Crazily – just found a blog post about the same thing – I guess it is something that was written about in Diary of a Wimpy Kid). One of Alex’s favourite presents was his Superman shirt with cape – can hardly get the thing off him!

being super silly

I was lucky enough to receive a new 50mm lens for my camera! So I had fun trying to figure it out – got a few good pics…. but still need a lot of practice!

That afternoon we hosted dinner for my mom, my brother, his girlfriend and his kids.  That was a nice time too – Alex and Jason’s kids don’t get to play together all that often since they live out-of-town with their mom most of the time.

More super sillies...

On Boxing Day we headed out to my Grandma’s for yet another Christmas feast – so more family, more food, and lots and lots of little boys. Seriously – there are 4 granddaughters, 2 great grand daughters, but 8 grandsons and 12 great grandsons (I think I have that number right!). So lots of little boys running everywhere.  Christmas at Grandma’s is always Boxing Day so we never get out to do the big Boxing Day sales… but thanks to the Interent… we were able to order some new speakers, a new satellite receiver, some blu-rays, and even a fabulous SLR camera purse!

So there you have it – our little Christmas holiday! I hope everyone had a great holiday too!

On the 11th Day of Christmas…

… my true love gave to me…

a little holiday baking.

(I know… this post is a little late – but better late than never!)

On Thursday and Friday I started my holiday baking.

I made Sugar Cookies

I did decorate them with sugar icing, but no pictures.

I also created little Pretzel Peppermint Hershey Kiss treats.

I had little helper for these tasty creations.

I also had great plans in making those yummy peanut butter balls rolled in coconut… but alas it was not to be. Mason ate the rice crispy cereal and the coconut while I was out at the grocery store – and there was NO way I was heading out into that madness again!

Next year I will be smart and bake early and then freeze the goodies.   Anyone have a easy peasy recipe for me to try next year?

On the 10th day of Christmas…

That’s right – I skipped a day – been too busy and I’m not going to let it stress me out.

So… my true love gave to me…

a fireplace mantle!

We’ve been on our fireplace mantle to be custom-built so we could declare our basement reno finished… for now (bathroom going in next winter).   On Tuesday it was finally installed.  And while it is a gorgeous piece of woodworking… it’s big.

Really big.

Bigger than we imagined that’s for sure.  The mantle ledge is 5ft off the ground – we were thinking it was going to be more along the lines of 4ft.  And since we have 8ft ceilings… it is kinda overwhelming.

So it looks like we are going to have more work done and have it resized so the fireplaces is a better fit in the room.   Most likely we will have the upper panel removed and have the ledge dropped.

The good news is that Santa has a fireplace this year!  If only I could find some stocking hangers…

On the 8th day of Christmas…

so I’m a day behind… that’s how I’m rolling these days.

… my true love gave to me…’

a second Christmas tree!

Recently Matt’s parents asked us if we wanted to use a small tree they had in storage for an “Alex tree”.  Since our basement is finished (or will be once the mantle is installed – it’s going in as I type), we took them up on their offer and put up this little tree.  It’s about 3ft tall, a greenery is a little sparse in areas, but it’s pretty cute. So on Sunday morning, I dug out a few decorations that didn’t make it to our big tree this year and let Alex have fun decorating..

This is my favourite part.


On the 6th and 7th day of Christmas….

My true love gave to me…

a super busy weekend.

Saturday I had to work – and it was slooooow… I guess everyone was out doing their holiday shopping or drinking egg nog – not in the library browsing books. When I got home some neighbours were over for an impromptu dinner and then Nate, Matt’s brother and his wife came over too – so turned into a little party! We had a few drinks and had a good time.  But that didn’t leave much time for blogging :).  Santa did however bring me a lovely early Christmas gift on Saturday… COLDPLAY TICKETS! The concert isn’t until July 27th, but I’m glad we ordered early (although within 20 minutes the Tuesday show was pretty much sold out.  The show in Toronto on the 26th sold out before the tickets really ever got on sale, so luckily they added a Tuesday show). Our tickets are beside the stage on the first level.  Can not wait! If they were as good as they were 2 years ago it is going to be one heck of a show!

Sunday brought us a lazy morning full of cartoons and playing with toys.  We even got a little snow! Alex and I watched The Smurf Holiday special – talk about flash back! It was the same one I watched 30 years ago… yikes, aging myself again. We also had our first family Christmas party at Nate & Heather’s place. It was so nice to see everyone again and food…. so much and so good…. I’m not doing so well “Get off the Couch” ladies (by the way – if anyone wants to join our little healthy living encouragement group on Facebook let me know).

It was quite a shock to learn about Kim Jong Il’s death before going to bed last night. I am praying his son will be a better leader and bring peace to the Korean peninsula.

Not a lot of pictures this weekend, so I’ll share the Coldplay Christmas Lights video.

P.S. – if you haven’t done it yet – go to Google and type in “Let it Snow”… love those fun little things!

On the fifth day of Christmas…

my true love gave to me…

Snow! After what seems like weeks of rain we have a little snow coming down. Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture today, but trust me, it was really pretty.  Now it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

I also read a blog post this morning that truly has come to me at a time when I need it.  It’s from Real Zest and was called “5 Simple Ways to Get More Out of Life“.  The tips are really simple and should be something I do already – but I know I don’t.  So tonight, step 1 – no cell phone! Word and Hanging with Friends will have to wait until I’m in bed.

On the 4th day of Christmas…

oops – I forgot yesterday.

but… my true love gave to me…

a pretty cool picture!

I heard the term bokeh for the first time (thanks to C!) and so I was playing around a bit with my camera – failing 99% of the time. But last night I was trying to take a picture of Sparky in front of our Christmas Tree and accidentally changed the wrong dial on my camera – and presto!


I had changed the setting to “Child” and for some reason the bokeh came out perfect – at least I think  so 🙂  So of course I had to take a few more pics.  Most likely won’t be able to do this ever again… but I will try (maybe with the new lens I asked Santa for).