Christmas 2014

6 Jan

{I accidentally published this post prematurely, with no photos. Here’s the revised version!}

This was the first Christmas that we were able to spend with family, without traveling 1,000 miles! It was nice.

On Christmas Eve, Travis worked until around 2:30 and then we got the car loaded up so that we could head up to Nevis right after the church service at 4. The service was nice, but crowded! We sat in the overflow area and watched the service on a TV. But we still got to light candles while we sang Silent Night.

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We made it up to Nevis by about 7 and ate dinner. Travis’ sister Carolyn and nephew Drew were there when we arrived, and his brother Matthew and his brother’s girlfriend Diana arrived later that night after we had gone to bed.

We haven’t completely decided on what we’re doing for gifts each year for Emma (and future siblings) but this year, we did the “Something to Wear, Something to Read, and Something to Play With” approach. So we bought Emma some fleece pajamas, three of the Bear Snores On books (it was a pack through Scholastic), and a tent/tunnel. Since my family always celebrated Christmas on Christmas Eve, but Travis’ did Christmas morning, we’re thinking about doing one gift (the Something to Wear) on Christmas Eve, and the rest Christmas morning. So that’s what we did this year. Emma opened her pajamas Christmas Eve, and the rest Christmas morning. Though she got so many presents from Travis’ family that she totally lost interest in opening them!

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On Christmas morning, Emma actually slept in until 8, which I think she has done 3 or 4 times in her entire life. That was very nice. After we all got up, we ate breakfast (monkey bread!) and then it was gift opening time. We went around in a circle opening one gift at a time so it took a while – maybe another reason Emma lost interest. But we got some great gifts. I received some maternity yoga pants, a couple serving bowls and a platter, dish towels and a couple of candles. Travis got a buck call, winter hat, and a couple flannel shirts. And Emma’s haul was play food and dishes for her kitchen, a Sit & Spin, a couple books, 4-5 pairs of fleece PJs, some new clothes, 3 new puzzles, a memory/matching game, and a few other toys (plus the tent we bought her).

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The rest of that day was pretty relaxed. We played some Pictionary on the Wii (seriously, so fun), Trivia Crack on our phones, and ate a ton.

The next day, we went to see Penguins of Madagascar at the Hackensack theater. We actually didn’t take Emma (G&G stayed back with her) – we saw that movie because the other options were meh (and I personally love animated movies). It was really cute and fun! Even Travis said that it was better than he expected it to be.

That night, Travis, his dad Al, Matthew and Drew set their old tree fort on fire. The trees it was built on were all dead, and the fort itself was falling apart, so they wanted to get rid of it. And what better way than burning it? They cut down 4-5 other dead trees and stacked them underneath the fort. It was quite the bonfire. Emma liked watching the sparks fly off into the night sky.

We stayed up in Nevis until Emma’s naptime on Sunday, and spent our time just hanging out. Emma took a very short ride on the snowmobile – she didn’t mind it during, but when we put her back on the snowmobile to take a picture, she freaked out:


Emma also took several wagon rides up and down the driveway, swang in her swing and went down the slide of G&G’s swing set. It was nice that it wasn’t crazy cold outside. After Emma went to bed, we played Apples to Apples, Scattergories, and Nerts (a version of Solitaire). Emma slept really well while we were up there – almost every day, she took a 2-2.5 hour nap and only woke up once at most at night. It’s such a relief when we don’t have to fight her for sleep away from home! (Now if only we didn’t have to fight her for sleep while AT home.)

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And that was Christmas this year! (We saw my family for New Years, which I will recap separately, soon.)

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