Sunday, January 3, 2016

2015 Christmas catch-up!

How in the name of sweet baby Jesus is it January 3rd, 2016?! How has Christmas come and gone when I still have Thanksgiving decorations sitting on my kitchen counter? How has Gracie just celebrated her 4th Christmas and how in the heck did my first vacation at my new job already come to an end? To say this holiday season was a busy one wouldn’t begin to describe the past 5 weeks… and because I’m certain I will not write individual posts about everything we did, I’m going to just go ahead and cram it all in one very long (and picture heavy) post below!

Here’s what my little familia was up to this holiday season…

{Twinkle Light Parade}

We started a new tradition this year taking our gal and her cousins to the Twinkle Light Parade! Our friends have done this for years and are “those people” who show up to a parade 2 hours early just to get good seats, so our view was awesome! I can’t believe that we waited this long to attend this event! It was absolutely beautiful and so much fun. There were all types of participants from school bands, to old squad cars, to car clubs, to jolly old Saint Nick, visiting New Mexico all the way from the North Pole! Gracie about lost her mind when he came our way.

The van with gifts on top was my favorite!

A good friend of ours picked up some pizzas and we all ate and waived at the people passing. Grace got tons of candy and even met Elsa and Anna!

{Operation Santa's Child}

I’m so proud of my amazing Mom! For the past 21 years she has made Christmas possible for 1,355 children in New Mexico! Operation Santa’s Child started as a small Christmas philanthropy in my mom’s living room and has continued to grow every year. It’s grown so much that she now has to rent a special events tent for the backyard just to house all the friends and family who participate, which is simply amazing!

She has shown my family and countless people who are close to us, that there is so much each of us can do throughout the year for those in need; especially during the holidays.

Teaching Gracie that Christmas isn’t just about presents for herself, is something so important to Georgia and I, so we’re super thankful that she gets to participate in this event every year. This year, we took Grace shopping with us when we picked gifts out for the kiddos we adopted. As one would expect from a 3 ½ year old, she had a difficult time understanding why we were buying princess clothes and toys for everyone but her and she did have one meltdown in the toy aisle at Wal-Mart. She also understood what we were doing and recovered from her moment of despair pretty quickly. It gave us the opportunity to explain to the Bean that not all kids have a place to call home and families who can buy them gifts at Christmas time. We talked to her about the sad truth that some children in NM are hungry and don’t even have food. She felt sad for them and while she continued to ask if she could have one of almost every gift we picked out for the kiddos, she showed real concern for the little ones we were helping out. It made this mama’s heart very happy.

{Homemade Cookies & DIY Christmas Ornaments}

I had quite a bit of mom guilt this Christmas… At my old job, I had been there 10 years, so every Christmas I had enough vacation to take 2 weeks off during the holidays. That is how we were able to do so many arts and crafts projects, go to a ton of fun places, and make all sort of yummy foods for the holiday. Now, with my new job which is still crazy busy as I’ve only been in my position 3 months, I just didn’t have the time. I didn’t have the time to do a lot of the things I loved doing as a DIY mama and I certainly didn’t have time to blog about any of the things we did do, until now. Before I knew it, Christmas was here and I felt so guilty that I didn’t fit it all in. That’s right around the time I was given a few days of vacation and a pep talk from my amazing wife about the fact that I didn’t need to be Martha Stewart every Christmas and that if I just had fun with our gal, that’s what she would remember. So that’s what we did for the few days I had free.

We kept up our tradition of making Christmas ornaments and painted canvas stars as a surprise Christmas gift for Mommy. We made cookies and Grace had a blast decorating them, while also destroying the kitchen… This kid absolutely LOVES to bake with Mama!

We fit in some fun days shopping and getting pampered with Gracie’s Nani and Georgia and I even got to go on a date, which very rarely happens! Isn't this outfit that Gracie's Gaga ordered for her just the cutest?!

G forced me to go see the new Star Wars movie (no pun intended) and wear one of her Star Wars t-shirts and a pair of her Star Wars glasses… I was not super excited with her movie selection and then I ended up crying like 3 times! Such a good movie!

{Baila, Baila Holiday Performance & Party}

Gracie had her first ever holiday dance recital and did so great! Almost all of our family attended, which was just the cutest thing. She’s one very loved little girl!

I was so proud of our little one. She had only had a few practices before the big performance and still, she picked up all the dance moves and had zero hesitation to get up on the stage in front of so many people. I went back stage with her while G sat in the audience filming and I totally cried before and during our performance. I mean, just look at these cuties on deck waiting to begin!

The Bean’s BFF from school is the reason we joined Baila Baila and she has loved every part of being in a dance group with her bestie. We all got together for a holiday party after the performance, complete with a potluck, lots of baked goodies and a gift exchange!

G and I made the mistake of thinking Grace could handle doing a little Christmas shopping following this super busy day and we ultimately paid for that mistake, lol! She passed out as soon as we arrived at the mall and we proceeded to shop for 2 hours while carrying a passed out – almost 4 year old… It was quite the work out.

{Preschool Co-Op Gala}

The super amazing Preschool Co-op that Grace attends had a Gala in honor of the schools 50th anniversary! It was held in a beautiful banquet hall covered in Christmas lights and we all got to dress up and be fancy for the night!

A preschool co-op is like nothing else. It’s a group of parents who place their kiddos’ education in the hands of dedicated teachers and committed parents. We pull together to raise up this group of amazing little people. We read books, make snack, clean toilets and play. Over time, just as our little ones develop friendships, so do we. I LOVE the friendships we’ve made with fellow classroom parents and feel so privileged to be a part of this group!

{Elf on the Shelf ~ Twinkle Toes}

Twinkle Toes made her second visit to our casa this Christmas and came packing gifts! G and I picked up a few Dollar Store gifts and sprinkled them in every couple of days, which made Gracie the happiest kid on the block. I swear she woke up an hour earlier than normal every morning of December to find Twinkle Toes.

Here’s a few pictures of her favorite visits from her favorite elf!

And there you have it – 5 weeks of Christmas shenanigans!

Here’s why I love blogging so very much. It requires you to stop what you’re doing and reflect on your life. It makes me take a break from the day-to-day chaos and focus on the good. I smiled the entire time I wrote this post because I was reminded of just how unforgettable and amazing Christmas was this year. It was a wonderful end to a not so wonderful year for our family and we feel so very blessed.

{Until I get around to writing our Christmas Eve & Christmas blog post…
From our family to yours, Merry Christmas}

1 comment:

  1. That twinkle light parade looks AWESOME!!! So glad you are introducing public service and giving to others at such a young age . What a fabulous daughter you are raising. You all are just adorable in your holiday card <3


Thanks so much for keeping up with our little family! We love reading your comments and will get back to you as soon as we can.

K+G+g+w ♥

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