Monday, January 21, 2008

Christmas 2007

This year we celebrated Christmas at home. It was probably one of the most quiet Christmas' we've had yet. My Grandma Totland - so Madelyne & Emma's Great Grandma (hence, the name "GG") - came over Christmas Eve and stayed with us until Boxing day. My dad spent most of Christmas Eve & Christmas day with us & my brother joined us Christmas day. We had lots of food, an abundance of gifts and great family time.

One of our traditions is getting new pj's on Christmas Eve. Usually this is just for the kids, but this year I was spoiled with two pairs of jammies for myself as well.

After the girls were tucked in bed, and we were certain they were fast asleep we started the work of hauling out all the gifts, filling the stockings and putting together their new playhouse. Matt played elf and assembled the playhouse while Dad, Grandma and I played a wild game of Scrabble.

Christmas morning was a bit less "frantic" than I imagined it to be. The girls were pretty calm and didn't really freak out like I expected. The playhouse was a huge hit and they were occupied with that most of the morning. We had a delicious brunch mid-morning then continued on with opening gifts. The afternoon found most people napping or relaxing while I prepared for dinner.

This year I cooked a turkey roast, because there were only a few of us it was much easier than doing a whole turkey. It was so moist and delicious and we had lots of leftovers. I made my stuffing in the crock-pot and it tasted amazing (this was the first year I tried that as well) along with pecan yams, mashed potatoes and green beans.

All in all it was a wonderful day........a true celebration & rememberance of Christ's birth.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Traditions - Part 2

Another special holiday tradition is the making of the famous gingerbread house. Last year Madelyne & I made the gingerbread house together so this year it was daddy's turn. Paul, Shawna and the boys came over and the festivities began. The daddy's took over the majority of the house building while Shawna & I entertained the kidlets and snacked on the decorating supplies (don't tell!).

Paul turned their lovely house in a Starbucks mansion and Matt and Madelyne created a snow covered cottage.

Both Matt and Paul decided that next year it will not just be a tradition but a competition! Since then I have researched many gingerbread house options and next year we will make one from scratch with homemade icing and "glue"!
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Traditions - Part 1

One of my favourite traditions around the holidays is spending time in the kitchen doing some good ol' fashion baking. Shortbread, nanaimo bars, almond bark, bird's nest (or thumbprints), spiced nuts.....mmmmmmm yummy treats to fill our tummy's while visiting with family and friends.

This year Shawna and the boys came over and we spent the better part of one day making two different types of cookies - keep in mind we were also taking care for four kids ages three and under. We decided to try two recipes we had sampled at our Happy Housewives Christmas party: Chocolate Espresso Coffeebeans (a shortbread cookie) and Chestnuts (peanut butter balls). Both batches made a crazy amount of cookies - I think we averaged around 200 coffee beans and 250 peanut butter balls.

It was a fantastic day and a great the kids get older it will be fun to see them get involved too.
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A Visit With Santa

This year Madelyne and Emma (along with a number of other friends) got a very special visit from Santa. We were celebrating the Christmas season with some friends at a Christmas Brunch and what to our wondering eyes appears? But good old Saint Nick!

Both girls thoroughly enjoyed their visit with the big guy in red.......Madelyne received a Dora Alphabet game and Emma received a Veggie Tales DVD - good choices Santa!

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