Gearing up for Christmas in our family is no joke :) We have a list of traditions that's a mile long! This year G-Mama and Big Papa wanted to get everyone together for dinner one night to decorate their Christmas tree together. Since Casey got married off this year we all have our own trees to decorate and I loved the idea of everyone getting together to decorate the big family tree, especially since it's the one we'd all be enjoying on Christmas morning!
G-Mama is SO patient. Three preschoolers were all over her clawing at the ornaments...I think only a few got broken though ;)
This kid LOVES him some Christmas fun!
Britt enjoyed watching the action
And she helped a little too!
Yes, Mrs Charlotte kept EVERY ornament from their childhoods
Reliving the memories of their homemade ornaments
Jordan was being romantic and hung his ornament next to one of Casey's
The boys were more interested in racing their toy cars in the hallway
Something I wanted to make sure we did this year was go watch the light show at the cool house we found last year. It's so crazy that this was the last thing we did as a family of three :) I cooked dinner early and we bathed the kids then hopped in the car at 6ish to go watch the show. I told Kye his job was to be on the hunt for Christmas lights. He took it SO seriously!!! With Britt's early bed time we knew she'd be a little fussy but they both enjoyed it and especially liked getting to sit in our laps while we parked.
For Britt's birthday party I bought a bunch of snowflake clay ornaments for the kids to decorate. We had a TON left and before I returned them Kye mentioned wanting to make one for people as gifts. GREAT idea!!! We went through and named all the people he wanted to make one for and then I returned the left overs. He worked SO hard on them and put SO much thought into each one! He made one for: Brittlynn, Big Daddy and Little Mama, Mema, G-Mama and Big Papa, Grandpa, Colt and Brad, Courtney and Payton, Casey and Jordan, Aunt Karen, Uncle Steven, and Mrs Liz from church. The entire time he made each one he'd ask me questions about each person and put personal touches on each of them. For Uncle Steven he put some golf stickers because they went golfing together. For Big Daddy he included a lot of yellow because it's his favorite color and for Grandpa a lot of blue :)
I am always blown away by Kye and his precious heart. He truly has such a giving spirit and was beyond proud of his gifts for everyone. We wrapped each one (he even wrapped one for himself haha) and presented them to everyone at the gift exchanges we had over the holidays. It made me very proud to watch how hard he worked for others and how excited he was to be GIVING instead of just receiving during this holiday season! I plan to have a craft each year for the kids to make to give as gifts...I love how this turned out :)
I had majority of our gifts wrapped and under our tree prior to Britt's party but I didn't want it to be TOO many presents and look crowded so I waited to wrap some until after the party :) I saw an idea on Pinterest to use one wrapping paper for each person so on Christmas morning you KNOW who each gift is for without reading the tags. We like to make cute tags with little inside jokes and such on them but I DO like the idea of wrapping the gifts in paper for each person...it would make the passing out process a TON faster at Mrs. Charlotte's for sure!!! I enjoyed having all of our gifts out and under our tree to enjoy!
And in case you're wondering...no...neither of my kids even attempted to open any of them :)
Pretty much all of our decorations were the same as last year and actually I decided to get rid of a lot of our stuff. SO much of it was red and just didn't go with our vibe of our house. Since Casey and Jordan just got married and don't have much I passed along anything she wanted to her and plan to sell the rest :) I am fine with going SIMPLE on our Christmas decorations! My favorite area of the house is the living room. I love the tree. I love our mantle. I love the lights going along the bannister. Love!!! However, when I went to put up our stockings this year two of our stocking hooks were broken in the box we had stored them in :( :( :( Have you ever seen how expensive stocking hooks are?!?! omg!!! I actually ended up getting them CHEAPER from Pottery Barn than I could have from WALMART?!?! How is that even possible? So strange to me! I went ahead and bought six of them. We also have six stockings. We know we ate least want two more babies someday so why not go ahead and be prepared, right?
Zach did a great job with our lights too! We added reindeer this year and I think they looked really cute! Like our inside decorations we like to keep the outside simple too...I also found some little trees to put beside the front door. Added a little touch!
While Zach and I were out of town I got a text from a neighbor friend who let me know that some of the neighborhood kids had messed with our deer!!! I imagine the HOA was NOT happy about this...I asked her to please fix them for us but to send a picture too ;) No wonder we didn't win any of the prizes for best Christmas lights...haha. Zach was pretty ticked about it but honestly, I'm sure it was just some teens having "innocent" fun. I'd much rather them be naughty with our reindeer than be off doing something worse!!! Thankfully they didn't do it again and we didn't have any nasty letters or attempted law suits or something from it ;)