Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Jubilation

On Wednesday night of this week I went on a triple date with my friends Lauryn and Beckie and their husbands Jonny and Steve. We started out with a little Feliz Navidad pot luck, Beckie made delicious Martha Stewart chicken enchiladas, I made my mother's tostadas and Lauryn made delicious bean and corn salsa and a salad.

We sent the boys downstairs and did a little secret Santa gift exchange. I'm happy to report that Beckie had my name and did a wonderful job with the assorted nail polishes she saw me long for at the mall once and a beautiful necklace.

After that we played all played a little Wii and headed for Temple Square.

As always Temple Square was absolutely beautiful and absolutely crowded. Here are a few pictures to enjoy.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Tag

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper. When it comes to Christmas totally wrapping paper.
2. Real tree or Artificial? REAL!! I mean, sure mine is dry already and practially falling apart and a fire hazard, last night when my friend Lauryn walked in and said "it smells like pine" it was all worth it.
3. When do you put up the tree? ASAP, right after Thanksgiving.
4. When do you take the tree down? When I get back in town I suppose.
5. Do you like eggnog? Um, no.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? The one I wanted the most and then got was probably my Molly American Girls doll.
7. Hardest person to buy for? I think my Grandma, I never really know what to get her.
8. Easiest person to buy for? Well, this year Shawn was pretty easy...the hardest part was narrowing down my ideas.
9. Do you have a nativity scene? YES! We just got it in the mail two days ago, my in-laws sent it to us for an early Christmas present so we (I, let's be honest) could enjoy it for the season.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail I guess, but I don't really send them so I feel a tad guilty getting them.
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Um...I don't know...I have to think.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? Mr. Krueger's Christmas. I really look forward to watching it every year and never make it to the end without crying. If you don't know what it is I recommend seeking it out.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? As soon as I see something I want to get for someone. I think October this year.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Not a Christmas gift.
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? You're asking me to choose? I'll pick two, Peanut Blossoms and Apricot cookies my mom makes, they are freaking delish.
16. Colored or Clear Lights? Hmmm...I like solid strands, color, clear it doesn't matter. But I also like roofs lined with red and green alternating because I think its festive. To my mom's dismay I actually aspire to be a very tacky Christmas yard decorator.
17. Favorite Christmas song? Oh, Holy Night hands down.
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Travel as long as we live in Utah. It really is a time for family.
19. Angel on the tree top or a star? I prefer a star.
20. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? In our family we open all of the presents under the tree on Christmas Eve after reading Luke:2 and then Santa comes and we open those in the morning.
21. Favorite ornament theme or color? I don't really care as long as there's red. What's Christmas without red?
22. White or Warm Christmas? White. One of my favorite Christmas memories was just a few years ago with a snowy Christmas Eve tractor ride with Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Siblings, and Grandma through rural Pennsylvania. We bundled up and sung carols. Sound too good to be true? It almost was.
23. Favorite Christmas Tradition? Wow, too many to choose from but I really do just love when my whole family is together at the kitchen table playing games.
24. Favorite Christmas Location? My parent's.
25. Who do you tag? Anyone who loves Christmas as much as I do. I mean, I've been a little tired of being tagged but on this one I couldn't refuse.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Nothin' Says Christmas Like Sugary Sweetness

This weekend Amy, Bethany and Kaden Lindseth came over and we had a wonderful time. We decorated Gingerbread houses:

Went sledding (this is the only picture I got before my battery died)

And then made and decorated sugar cookies. (Shawn would like his mother to take special note of the green stocking with Santa's head on it since its just like the one she made him when he was a boy.)

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Holiday weight gain equal to my own. What? Listen, if we all get fat then none of us are fat OK.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas Decor

Everyone who reads this knows how excited I was to decorate for Christmas so I thought I'd share with you my festive decor.
This window from our living room into the kitchen has been deemed my holiday window and it has been festive for Halloween, Thanksgiving and now Christmas, its fun to have an area to change up like that.
This is the only place I could think of to hang our stockings because we don't have a fireplace and our stair railing is only a flat wall, taping them would look a little rough.

Oh Christmas Tree. This is a really pretty tree, its got a great shape and the aroma is to die for. I don't love my decorations though. I mean, I thought they'd be so great but they're just not. Maybe its because there aren't enough on there, maybe its because I've got too much going on. I don't know.
Here is the best picture of the outside of the house I could get. Its not great but you get the general idea...Maybe I should take a day time one.

Merry Christmas!!! Can you believe its only 20 days away?

Monday, December 1, 2008

A Feast, A Sale and A Wedding

This year Shawn and I hosted Thanksgiving at our place. I was really nervous about the turkey because I've heard so many terrible stories about the bird being really dry or not done for hours after the guests arrive. When I checked the temperature of the bird at 1 (an hour before our scheduled dinner) it was totally done...even more done than it was supposed to be (185 degrees) but it still turned out fine. We had Beckie and Steve Clark over as well as the Aaron Toner family. Everyone brought some food and it was all muy delicioso. After the below damage was done we Wii'd our hearts out and almost Wii fitted our turkey dinner out. hahaha

On Friday morning I had a girls-butt-crack-before-dawn-out with the Ellis women (Lindsey my brother's wife, her sister Toni and their mother Jenny) We really did get some killer deals (we better have since we were out the door by 4:40). First we went to Toys R Us and decided that no deal, no matter how great was worth standing in a line that wrapped through the entire perimeter of the store. Then we headed to Walmart, got a few things and then...then we went to the mall. The mall was GREAT! I couldn't believe how not crowded it was. I think really early everyone hits the stand alone stores and then the mall goers head out in the late morning. Being there at 7ish we got incredible deals, had an incredible selection of goods and had little to no lines in every store (except Bath and Body works...that one was REALLY long).
After we got back from shopping, around 10:30 I think, Shawn wanted to take a turn. He came back after about 2 hours and said that the stores looked empty they were so picked through and he also said that the line of cars trying to get into the mall was ridiculous. Waking up really paid off. And, even though I was totally exhausted Shawn humored me and we headed out to pick up our tree. It's a really beautiful tree. Here's a plug for Thanksgiving Point: this is the first year that they have ever had Christmas trees but they really do it right, they sawed off the bottom 2 inches, drilled a hole up the bottom and tied it to the roof with their own twine. I've never had such a full service Christmas Tree buying experience. And, it really is a gorgeous tree.

On Friday evening Shawn and I went to my friend Lauryn's reception and then to her sealing on Saturday. They did things a little backwards but it was great for them I'm sure. Lauryn hired someone who specializes in decorating church cultural hall receptions and it was beautiful. She was a very beautiful bride and I'm sure she and Jonny will be super happy.

On Sunday morning we had to say fairwell to the Sechrist's. It was sad for the boys to have to leave the Wii, I mean, Uncle Shawn I mean, me. Yeah, proably in that order.