Favorite Christmas Moments 2016

This Christmas was a special one becasue it was Grayson’s first Christmas! I just love this picture of him by his little tree I got him for his room.

I got Grayson the cutest little santa suit to wear and he was such a little ham with his hat on.

Elin got a Tsum Tsum advent calendar and it was so fun to see her excited everyone morning to see which one she got. She was thrilled with her surprise!

On Christmas morning Elin was eager to get downstairs to see what Santa had left. I had them sit under the tree for a quick picture and I love this picture of Elin stealing a kiss from Grayson.

Elin did such a good job at helping him check out his stocking and helping him open all his presents.

This picture was right before we set out visit family after we opened presents.

This last picture cracks me of Nanny and Papa with the grandkids because Elin’s smile looks rather aggressive and Grayson is getting his little head patted. His head is pretty irresistible! This was right before we left in the evening and it had been quite a long day.



Merry Christmas

It was so exciting to schedule the annual Christmas card photo shoot with the addition of little Grayson this year. I was nervous about getting smiles from both kids and getting them to look straight ahead at the camera, but I shouldn’t have worried because the photos turned out great. We used several on our cards.

Here are a few of my favorites.

Angel of course got photos with the children but let us get one of her solo.

Christmas Events 2016

It’s hard to believe that all our Christmas activities are over until the big day.  At the beginning of the month we did Jolly days at the Children’s Museum and then the next day we took Elin out to dinner and then to see The Nutcracker ballet at Clowes hall on the Butler campus. This is the second year of taking her and she did again did very well.  It’s quite a lengthy ballet but she stayed quiet and  only got tired at the very end.

She loved  the big tree in the lobby so I made sure to get her picture with it.

Then the next morning she got to attend a special breakfast with Santa event at the Indianapolis Zoo.  Her nanny took her and they had a great time.  They ate breakfast, visited with Santa, made crafts and played instruments and sang.  Elin really seemed to enjoy herself.


Elin is looking so forward to Christmas this year and asks me everyday how much longer we have.  The season has flown  by and it’s hard to believe it will be over in just under a week.


Christmas Pajamas 2016

I was so excited to get Elin and Grayson matching Christmas pajamas this year!  I always go overboard and have tons of holiday themed pairs for Elin and Gryason got his fair share this year as well.  But, these personalized matching sets are my favorite!  I ordered these way back in the summer when I was still on maternity leave!  Apparently that is when a lot of shops take pre-orders for the holidays and I jumped on the chance to order early.  I remember being nervous about sizing for Grayson but I think I picked pretty well.  I also remember that I could not believe he would be sitting by Christmas and so excited for that milestone to come!

Elin did pretty good for their pictures together.  It’s hard to get them to both look at me and smile at the same time so I only got one good shot of that but I think the other shots are cute as well.






Check out all the other ladies in the link up to see all the cute Christmas pajamas.

 Loading InLinkz ...

Jolly Days 2016

It’s that time of the year for our favorite display at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum which is the holiday themed Jolly Days!

Since we knew it would be crowded as always, we took a Friday off work to go which turned out to not really help with the crowds because there were several school groups there on field trips. However, we were one of the first few in line to see Santa which was very important since this was Grayson’s first Santa visit!


We saw Santa as he walked in and I love this picture of Elin running up to him to say, “hi”.


Grayson did pretty well with Santa. He was not all smiles but I think he was confused about what was going on. He started to cry a little when he was by himself with Santa but then stopped as soon as Elin joined them.



Elin was ecstatic to see Santa and eagerly sat there and told him that she has been very good and she wants Barbies for Christmas.



Elin did the slide a couple of times and Grayson even went down once.




Elin enjoyed all the other usual activities like the snowball fight, reindeers, and train to look at. Grayson enjoyed checking out the baby area.






We all had such a good time and I was so glad that Grayson had a good first visit with Santa and that he enjoyed the museum.

Life Lately

I have been so bad about blogging lately, so this is from a few weeks ago but I didn’t want to miss sharing it.

Elin and I attended a cupcake and canvas event at her dance studio. It was free as a customer appreciation event and it turned out to be such a fun evening. We painted our background and then had pizza for dinner as the paint dried and then we painted out tutus on top and then had cupcakes as that dried.

Elin was one of the youngest girls there but she enjoyed painting and talking to the older girls. I hope the dance studio considers doing this again because it was a lot of fun.



We also have been slowly putting up all the Christmas decor. I’m so excited for Grayson’s first Christmas.


Elin has had so much fun putting on and arranging all the ornaments. She is not supposed to touch the ornaments now but I’m not sure if that is happening because it seems as though I find little clusters of them down at the bottom of the tree.


This little guy just got his first little tree for his room. Pictures of that to come soon. Grayson is enjoying looking at the twinkling lights on the tree. We are so excited to share in all the holiday excitement with him.


Christmas Pajamas 2016

It’s Christmas Pajama time! I love to see all the cute little kids all decked out in their Christmas pajamas. I got Elin and Grayson two different sets of personalized ones this year. Plus, lots of non-personalized holiday sets as well.

I am co-hosting a little linkup with a few of my favorite bloggers. I would love for you to join us for a fun linkup showing off your kiddos Christmas pajamas and where you found them. The linkup will run from Dec 15-22. More details to come.

Meghan – The Adventure Starts Here
Liz – Ellie and Addie
Jen – And Hattie Makes Three
Julie – The Girl in the Red Shoes
Whitney – Work it Mommy
Ashley – I Love You More Than Carrots
Chrissy – Simple Joys Blog
Sara – Running from the Law
Amy – Keepin’ Up with the Smiths
Natasha – Hello Happiness
Crystal – Hall Around Texas
Ashley – Being Brickner


Christmas Day 2015

It’s Jan 5th and I am just now getting around to posting Christmas day pictures. Not a great way to start off the year but didn’t want to skip posting them this year.


We were up late on Christmas Eve and therefore Elin was up much later and slept in and so she didn’t even wake up until 10am and we had to wake her up! But when she get up, she was very excited to get downstairs and see what Santa had brought.


She first noticed the doll pram and was extremely excited. She had not asked for one but luckily was thrilled to find one under the tree.


Then the next big exciting item was her doll house which she calls her Calico Critter house because she specifically wanted a house to go with all the Calico critters she asked for. The house was a huge hit and cute as a button. I love all the little wooden furniture it came with and it fits her Calico Critters perfectly.



Her other big gift was an American Girl bitty baby. She has been loving pushing her new baby all over the house in her new stroller.


Santa even remembered Angel and she got some treats and a few new stuffed animals to play with.



In the afternoon we headed out to see what Elin’s cousins got for Christmas and to have Christmas dinner with the family. Elin enjoyed seeing everyone and checking out all of Max’s new toys.




I love this picture of the cousins together even though they are not looking at the camera.


Christmas Eve 2015


Christmas Eve turned out to be a nice and low key day. Elin was feeling back to her normal self which was such a relief! She spent the day playing and making sugar cookies before time to get over to Nanny and Papa’s house for the Christmas Eve celebration there.

Dinner was first which is always hard to explain to the kids that eating comes before the present opening.


I was so excited that Elin ate her ham and veggies well. She has not had much of an appetite with her sickness lately.


This year the kids drew numbers and whoever’s turn it was would go first and open all their presents before moving on to the next person. Elin was last but did such a good job watching everyone else open their presents.



Elin was so excited to see that the stockings were filled! She noticed the Peppa pig stuffed animal right away and was dying to get to it as soon as she saw it.





She was excited to see she got her first Calico Critter set. She has been eyeing these for months. Little did she know that Santa would bring several more sets and a dollhouse for them the following day.




One of the first gifts she asked for was a Peppa Pig house. She was very excited to receive it and needed  the help of her cousin Max to lift it up for pictures.


One item she didn’t ask for but turned out to be a hit was a shopping cart. She has one at Nanny’s house but doesn’t have one at home. She also received a new cash register to play with and I think is she is going to love playing with those together. For now she has been loading up her toys in it and giving them a spin around the house. Occasionally they fall through the cracks leaving trails of smaller toys in her wake.



When we got home it was so hard to get her to stop playing long enough to get ready for bed. We were all up late but anxious to see what Santa would bring Elin in the morning.

Chicago Trip

We just got back from a long weekend in Chicago! It was Elin’s first time there and we thought it would be a fun place to visit during the holiday season.

We have all been sick with endless coughing and congestion, but the day before our trip we took Elin to the pediatrician because she was rubbing her eye and sure enough she not only had an eye infection but a double ear infection. Not a fun way to start out on a long weekend trip. We actually debated not going, but ultimately decided that she seemed to be ok and therefore we should keep on with our plans.

We left on a Thursday morning and stayed until Saturday late afternoon/early evening. We stayed at the MileNorth which was nice and close in walking distance to Michigan Avenue and all the shopping.


Elin was a fan of the room and loved running and jumping into the bed over and over.

One of our first stops was the mall that housed the American Girl store. I knew Elin was going to be excited to explore the store with all the extensive displays. She loved it and we we had a hard time getting her out of the store!


She is getting a bitty baby for Christmas and I hope she likes it as much as she does in the store.

While I picked up a couple of accessories to go with her doll, she ventured over to the lego store and spent a long time in there playing in their play areas.


After some more shopping in the mall, we went to Smith and Wollensky for dinner which is one of our favorites. Elin wasn’t feeling up to eating much, so she missed out on some yummy steak which is a shame because she actually likes steak.

The next day we went in the morning to the Christkindl Market. It was very interesting but already very crowded and we got there shortly after it opened. Elin really enjoyed looking at the Nativity there. There was a sign out from that said it was the second largest nativity scene on display.


I was really impressed that Elin could name off several of the figures. I guess the parochial preschool is paying off.


Inside the market there were lots of vendors with traditional German food and Christmas decor for sale. There were lots of beautiful hand-painted ornaments.


After walking around for a bit in the market we had to get over to the Macy’s on State Street nearby for reservations to see Santa and reservations to eat lunch at the famous Walnut Room. Here is a little blurb about the restaurant taken from the Macy’s on State Street website:

The Walnut Room has the distinction of being the first restaurant in a department store, and it’s also the longest continuously running restaurant in the country. Opened in 1907, the popular dining and gathering spot was originally known as the South Tea Room. It became known among the ladies of Chicago as The Walnut Room due to its beautiful Circassian Walnut paneling, and by 1937 the affectionate nickname had become the official name. A chicken pot pie dish that inspired the restaurant is still a standout on the menu. The world-famous 45-foot Great Tree graces The Walnut Room from late November to early January each year.

We had heard that it was very hard to get into the restaurant without reservations and they stopped taking them by phone for Christmas back in November, so the the only way to get in was to show up the day you wanted to eat there make reservations in person. We were lucky enough to get lunch reservations without a problem.


The tree in the center of the restaurant was gorgeous and we enjoyed the decor as we ate. The food was good as well.

They had North Pole fairies visiting the tables with children. The fairy that stopped at our table told Elin all about living at the North Pole and knowing Santa. She sprinkled some magic fairy dust and had Elin close her eyes to make her Christmas wish. Elin’s face cracks me up with how hard she was closing her eyes and concentrating.


She also gave her a tiny marble that was magical and anytime Elin wanted to talk to Santa or send him a wish, she would just wish on her new magic marble and the fairy would hear the message. Elin was pleased as punch about this and I worried the whole day that she was going to lose that dang marble. By the grace of God we made it home with it.


After our lunch it was finally our reservation time to go meet Santa. This Macy’s was so festive and they made everything so cute with their displays. There was whole fun little Christmas maze we walked through to get to Santa. There was so much to look at with little replicas of Santa’s house and cute decor.


Finally it was time to see Santa and Elin had a lot of fun talking to him.


He gave her a little pin as a gift that she loved


She was just too happy and excited to be talking to him.


After seeing Santa, we went out into the children’s section where they had lots of fun activities going on. They had someone making balloon animals, an ornament making station, characters walking around, and of course the red mailbox to mail a letter to Santa. Even though she had just seen him, Elin thought she should go ahead and send him a a letter with her list.


We couldn’t leave the store without visiting the snoopy display inside and out side the store.



After some more walking around and shopping, we went back to our room in the later afternoon to let Elin rest a bit and then went to dinner at a nice Italian place and walked around the city some more. We were blessed with very nice weather during our whole trip.


I don’t have any photos from our last day but we walked around the city and enjoyed all the beautiful Christmas sights.

On our drive home Elin was sleeping and she she woke up, got into a coughing fit, and vomited a few times all over herself in the car. Not a great end to a trip. Luckily we were able to pull over at a rest stop and get her all cleaned up and new clothes on and there was no more sickness in the car after that. We were lucky I guess that she wasn’t sick during the trip and got to enjoy herself.