Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Magic

Santa came a day early for us so we didn't have to rush through the presents to get to church on time. Neither of the boys minded, or even knew to mind.We didn't have many presents under the tree, but it took 3+ hours to open them. There were a few Milton Bradley games for Mason and he wanted to open each one and try them out. So we spent a few minutes playing Hi Ho Cherry-o and Ants in the Pants. We convinced him to leave Memory and Candyland for a later time.
Mason loved his goodies from all his family and Santa, and Donovan loved his wrapping paper. Justin and I received a blu-ray player from Santa as well as a DVD recorder from my parents (thank you!!) so now we can burn all these news broadcasts Justin is in for posterity to enjoy. We also got some nice presents from Justin's family. I will be smelling very yummy this winter season (thanks so much!). It was a very nice, relaxing, and happy morning.
That night we went to a Christmas Eve party with our friends, the Lesofskys and I made some Santa bread that actually turned out the way I hoped it would. I may make it a tradition.Christmas morning we went to church and I was informed on the way that I had a solo in one of the songs in the program, but it was the 4th verse of "I Heard the Bells" which says "Then rang the bells more loud and deep, 'God is not dead nor doth He sleep! The Good shall fail, The right prevail, With peace on Earth, Good will to men." I loved singing it and I'm grateful that they asked. Pretty much everyone in the congregation got up at some point to sing with a group. Mason even got up a few times with Justin and I, but didn't actually sing. It was disorganized and unrehearsed, but I think it was my favorite Christmas service that I've ever attended. It was pure worship and celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.
Two of our friends, Austin and Melissa, came over to enjoy a Christmas steak dinner with us. They are the closest thing to family we have here, and it was fun to celebrate with them. The boys love them.
Mason's favorite Christmas movie and book this year was The Polar Express.
And a Christmas present to me was that Donovan found a sort of pacifier. We can put a piece of fruit in the net of this pacifier and he can suck the juice through the net. Very nice for a few minutes of peace. (At least until the juice runs out anyway.)So now Christmas has come and gone again. The tree is down. Mason cried when he saw it had disappeared. It's strange to think that the next time we unpack it we will be in a new house in an unknown location. I love this season. I'm always a little sad to see it pass.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

'Tis the Season

This was the most successful Santa visit we've had so far, even with this being the scariest Santa of the bunch. Donovan had no problem with him. Mason got super excited when he saw him and Mason told him he wanted cars for Christmas. Santa asked if Mason had been naughty or nice and Mason just stared at him, confused. He hasn't learned what "naughty" means. I guess he's too much of an angel.

We also went to see the lights at the DC Temple. They aren't Temple Square, but Mason loved them so they were worth the trip. He was just upset that we didn't go inside the temple. Here are some pics from that visit:

Here we are decorating the Christmas tree. Mason was the most excited about the "Christmas Star" at the top, so we let him put it up.

Some miscellaneous pics from the month:
Justin got another battle wound. This one came in "the gauntlet." Someone's bayonet sliced down and just grazed his neck. I'm glad I was videotaping and didn't see it happen. I was sitting next to the wife of the guy who did it and she saw it happen. She immediately started apologizing. Luckily, it only left a scratch.

Mason and his friend, Isaac playing. They are a little over a year apart in age. Cute little Isaac used to make Mason cry, but now they're friends! His new found tolerance for other children makes hanging out with my friends so much more enjoyable.

And here are some pics and video of the boys playing together. Donovan is sitting up pretty well now, so that makes play time much more fun for the both of them. These videos are just for those who wish they could be in the same room with these little guys. They may get a little long for those looking to be entertained.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Late Halloween Photo

I finally got our family's Halloween pic from the girl who took them at the party. It made me laugh. Poor Donovan.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happy Birthday, Sarah!


This is just for Sarah, but I thought everyone would like to see the pictures. Happy Birthday to Aunt Sarah! Both these boys love and miss you so much!!!!!!!!
Mason is holding his new car that he got today. It was the only one he wanted in the entire toy store : a purple and green PT Cruiser with flames on the side that plays "Livin La Vida Loca." [sigh] We are calling it Ramone. The batteries might die soon.
I added all the photo attempts below just for fun.

Alabama Thanksgiving

For Thanksgiving this year we drove down to Alabama to visit my parents' new home. Thanksgiving is by far my favorite holiday and I was not disappointed this year. The area where my parents live is gorgeous. The food was divine. I met my one and only nephew. So adorable! We tossed a football around. And we took a little trip out to the Air and Space Museum. We ate at Mellow Mushroom. We were missing half of the siblings, which was sad, but it was fun to hang with the family in town. The drive there and back was not nearly as bad as we predicted (thank you boys!), though we were more than ready to be out of the van at the end of the trip. The next day after we got home, Mason woke up and asked if we could go to Grandma's and Grandpa's house. . .

All the Grandsons

Helping with Thanksgiving Dinner

Running from the Defense

The Dinner! So delicious! Thank you Mom & Granny!

A Visit From Uncle Nick!

Air & Space Museum:

Bathtime in the "Dangerous Tub" (According to Mason. He wasn't a fan of the jacuzzi jets.)
We found out we were pregnant with Donovan last Thanksgiving. Hard to imagine him as being the size of a peanut. We are so thankful to have this little boy in our lives!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

This is Halloween. Halloween.

First off, Happy Halloween Birthday to our new nephew/cousin Troy! ! ! ! So happy for Lisa and Pete!!
We spent today in the ER for an allergic reaction of Mason's on his face that made his eyes super swollen. But we made it back to go trick or treating around the block, so no worries. We dressed like dragons and vikings, but I didn't get any photos of the vikings. The boys didn't like their headpieces, either. Someone took a photo of our family all dressed up together, so I'll need to get a copy of that sometime later. .
Here are some pics of our Halloween adventures this year:

At the church party, Mason attacked the doughnut eating contest that I was in charge of before he even got his costume on. He struggled with the no hand rule. Pumpkin Bowling
It was snowing during our church party, and I wish I'd gotten a picture of Mason running around in circles outside, squealing with delight. He must have picked up Justin's Eskimo gene. When we got home he pulled out his toy shovel and started clearing the driveway of the snow that had already melted.
Our pumpkin carving!! ! !

The dragon needed to fly for a minute during Trick or Treating.
"Smile Mason"
A nice view of the candy-mouthed allergic reaction face:
And tonight while I was putting this together I caught some cute moments, so I'll add them, too.

PS- this outfit Donovan is wearing is 12-18 months. He hit 3 months this past Tuesday. Which was the day our NIECE, Eleanor was born - Congrats to Stacy and Spencer ! ! ! !