Our winter To Do list was nearly complete by the end of December.
We love Christmas. Everything about it. We had a long list of things we wanted to do and we were able to complete nearly everything. If only the snow would have cooperated we could have completed our entire list.
Being in a different house once again this year it was fun trying put all the decorations up. I love finding new spots and ways to display things. I always think I need to get more decorations but with our lack of storage I have held off.
Christmas cards are always a highlight every year. I love sending out our cards and I LOVE receiving from so many friends and family.
Baking is a must. I had a long list of treats to make around the holidays and only got to making about half of them. We did cookies for neighbors and cookies for friends and cookies for Santa.
Paying it forward and serving is a top priority all year long. I try to do something special every month but December we try to make it a point to help and give more.
Doing little things like compiling homeless bags.
This was a last minute thought one day while I was grocery shopping. I ended up making 8 bags. We handed them out for a few days and took some with us to Utah as well. One morning while I was driving to meet a friend for breakfast I saw a guy on the side of the road. I had an overwhelming feeling to get him a bag. I handed it over to him, he thanked me and started walking back to where his stuff was. He walked a few steps and fell to his knees and just dove into the bag. My heart and emotions just crumbled. I could see so much appreciation and it did me in that morning. To me you never know someone else's story.
We did several other "pay it forward" and "RAK'D" things which really made it feel like the holidays.
One of my favorites was buying Hot Chocolate and Coffee and take them to people. Just random people. In parking lots, the bell ringers at the front of stores, someone waiting at the bus stop, etc. I was shocked how happy it made everyone and how they seemed so thankful. I loved letting Tracker take them up their drink and helping him see how fun it is to give.
We have a few traditions and one of them being new ornaments.
Our family one was the cross, Tracker picked out the dog with basketball (which took him 2 stores and looking at every single ornament to pick out) and
Makenzies was given to us from my friend Malory.
My Mom came to visit us for Christmas this year which was sooo awesome.
We went to the live Nativity which was amazing. I have never seen anything like that and it really put into perspective what it must have been like for Joseph, Mary and Jesus.
Track loved looking through the toy catalogs even though he would point to and ask for the most random items. He still doesn't quite understand what it means to ask for something. If you ask him what he wants its always a Basketball which is what he asks for 24/7.
The week before Christmas I did a Polar Express party for the kids I babysit. They wore Jammie all day, ate a fancy breakfast, colored bells, made reindeer and got tickets to take a pretend train ride on the Polar Express. They sat on a pile of pillows and watched the movie while drinking hot chocolate and other snacks. Tracker has loved this movie this year and has watched a few times but for some reason he was so scared of it when we watched it with all his friends. He sat on my lap the majority of the time and kept hiding his face in my face. That silly kid of mine. After the movie "someone" left bells on the front porch. I had them in the freezer so they were really cold and told the kids they must have come right from the north pole. They all pretty much had no clue what I was saying but smiled and went along with it.
There has been lots of snowman crafts, Santa letters written, Christmas stories read and lights to look at. We really tried to take full advantage of the season this year and get Tracker really excited about it. He loved to talk about "Crease-Mas" and "Santa, HO HO HO".