Because of the change in Hughes' circumstances, one exciting result was that Mark's sister Sarah was coming to us. Yay! We'd still have a family member other than just us to celebrate with. Sarah is a superstar aunt and the kids not only had their yucky waxy chocolate advent count down to Christmas, but another countdown for Sarah's arrival. They had to be so patient for so many things!!
I did my best to make it the best I could. There are so many fun traditions and new things I wanted to do with my kids while we were still little and while we were still here in NY with our NY friends. Here are some key things we did: multiple gingerbread houses, ornament making, caroling, baking & delivering, unwrapped a Christmas/winter themed book each night before bed, Elf on the Shelf, SNOWFLAKES (Henry and Jane probably made over 50 by themselves), Charles Dickens Festival, lots of Christmas music and fake fireplace on the t.v., school and church parties, a lot of talk of the Nativity, classic movies, new movies (Frozen), and as you will see by the photos...the list goes on.
These things, combined with the some other family things that are currently happening back at home really made me feel very deeply this year. Materialism was not a concern in the least. Mark and I didn't even get each other anything this year and it was completely fine. I have more love for my husband and children, extended family and close friends than I ever have. I feel so blessed for so many things.
|Listening to "Silent Night" from their Little People Nativity set and gazing at the tree. So innocent and sweet!|
|FAO Schwarz. Made it through the entire store to the back where the piano was with no demands of toy purchases. My kids are awesome!! Of course we also saw the big Rockefeller Tree but Sarah has that photo.|
|Thanks to Pinterest, we set up our own "Polar Express" for the kids. We got the kids in PJ's and made them think they were about to go to bed. Then Mark casually checked the mail and found this envelope for the kids. They were so excited!!|
|Inside were their tickets to hop on board the Polar Express "Car". (Now may not be the right time to say this, but the real Polar Express movie creeps me out and I really don't like it) This idea loosely based on it however, is cute!!|
|It's hard to see, but Christmas lights were set up inside the car. There was some jumping and screaming for joy.|
|Christmas morning!! (After a wardrobe change to other new PJ's the night before)|
|If you look on the tree, that's just a small small small sample of the snowflakes that were made in our house these past two weeks. (all with recycled paper from the math department)|
|Jane is showing a lot of interest in music. She loved playing with her Dora guitar, but we got sick of hearing Dora. We're hoping her new Ukulele will be just as loved. And no, Dora did not get chucked. She's just hiding!!|
|New monkies for the monkies. Jane loves that hers has a pink bum.|
|Jane with her new tea set. Everyone put on their best manners for her first tea party. Pinkies were definitely out!|
|And he's off! We got him some already prepared slides.|