the month of december was a complete whirlwind!! i still can't quite wrap my mind around the fact that it is already the middle of january. but even though december went by in a flash, we made some wonderful memories.
+ i started nice and early by getting our first ever christmas cards done before the craziness set in. i bought a super cute template from alma loveland and threw some highlights in from our year:
+ then i took the text from our card, added some snowflakes, and printed all our neighbor gifts out on brown paper bags. simple + sweet. inside i put a fresh fruit/spice potpourri. my mom always had this simmering on the stove growing up during the holidays, so now it is a staple in my home as well. smells so delicious! and with all the other christmas treats you get, it's nice not to have to worry about the calories :)
simmering scent recipe:
2 lemon slices
2 lime slices
2 orange slices
2 TBSP cloves
2 bay leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
+ celebrated carson's 2nd birthday! kate sure knows how to throw a party. she had delicious soups, a birthday cake with a frosting pine tree in the middle (it was amazing!) and then they took all of us for a hay ride in their trailer through the festival of lights. such a fun time.
+ attended the christmas miracle of jonathan toomey written by my uncle ward! how cool is that?!? danny and i went with my mom and little sister cami. we throughly enjoyed ourselves.
+ had a girl's night out! kate has started this awesome tradition of caroling to the older couples in her grandma's neighborhood. i wasn't able to go last year, so this year i was eager to see what it was all about. it was incredible! i haven't been caroling in years and going around to those who actually enjoy carolers is quite the gratifying experience. we met some of the nicest people, and i was reminded once again, of the true meaning of christmas. thanks kate for organizing such a wonderful night!!
+ spent christmas eve with my family (and cousins) we ate delicious "cafe rio", started and finished a 1000 piece puzzle!, and opened a few gifts.
+ made some adorable felt food for my sweet little nieces (if i do say so myself!) we had them this year for christmas, and when i stumbled upon these patterns i knew i had to make them. though much more time consuming than i had originally planned...i was extremely happy with the finished result. now i just need to make some for my own children :)
+ enjoyed a spiritual christmas morning at church and then returned home for a relaxing time opening gifts with my sweet family. i think this year was the very best yet!
+ learned that santa claus really does exist! a few weeks before christmas, we came home to find this giant box on our doorstep:
we have absolutely no idea who it is from...
but if you are reading this, thank you thank you thank you!!
max is in little boy heaven driving around this little red sports car.
this was the last gift he "opened" on christmas day...his excitement about it was priceless.
+ spent christmas day with danny's family
(and this is where the pictures end because i lost my camera!!)
+ played ticket to ride: german edition with sam + penny
+ went to sill's diner with caleb + lauren
(thanks again! you two are the best.)
+ went to boondock's with the mckinley clan. we bowled, played laser tag, and threw coins into the arcade games to our hearts content!
+ found out max caught a case of "hand, foot, and mouth" and tried to treat his poor hands back to health. (days after he caught hfm, he also had what sounded like croup. post-christmas sicknesses are no bueno.)
+ enjoyed every moment we could with all of our wonderful family + friends!