The holidays are in full swing here at our house, and have been for a few weeks now – but I’m just now realizing I haven’t actually shared any of that yet. Holiday posts are some of my absolute favorites to re-read years later (second only to vacation posts). We got our tree pretty early this year (the 3rd!), which has been fun for maximizing festivities.
I’ve been so looking forward to this Christmas, since Halloween was such a booming success this year. Cullen’s first Christmas he was right around Graham’s age – way too small to have any idea what was going on. And last year he was kind of into it, but not really much of a participant. But I had high hopes for this year!
I talked up the Christmas tree for weeks ahead of time, and he loved spotting them out the car windows or whenever we were out shopping. I told him over and over again that once we got ours, he’d get to put the star on top. Cue excitement.
He patiently waited for me to do the many, many strands of lights, and circled me around the tree like a shark. Of course part of my holiday vision was this lazy Sunday afternoon where we listened to Christmas music and all wore festive but not-too-matchy outfits and it all made for the perfect family photoshoot. The important stuff, right?
So naturally, it ended up being Thursday night at 7pm in horrible lighting, and my son was wearing a ragged, stained white onesie. Tis the season of my current state of life, friends.
I did the first half of the work with the lights and garland, and then I fed and cuddled Graham while Casey and Cullen did all the ornaments. Casey started by asking Cullen where each one should go, but he just wanted to put all of them on top of each other in the exact same spot – ha!
He loved pulling each one out of the box, and it was fun to see him get excited about some of my old ornaments from circa 1986.
Ragged, old onesie or not, it was a really fun family evening and that was all that I really wanted.
So when I was growing up we always made a big thing of putting the tree topper on – in our house it was an angel that my mom had hand-sewn. Ours is a gold star from Target, but hey – whatever. So getting to put the tree topper on was a big deal, especially in a family of multiple kids.
So of course I made a big deal of Cullen finally being old enough to help me do it. Although he has participated in years past…
Are you ready for this year’s most ridiculous tree-topping fail? We got all excited and ready to go…
And then realized that the stool was way too far away and the toddler was waaaaay too heavy to hold out that far. I almost dropped him into the tree!!
So I moved the stool in and went for it again…
Double fail. Poor kid just wanted to put the star on top!
So we called in the big leagues. Success!
Here is the rest of our décor this year. Our mantle is lined with twinkly lights and adorable holiday cards, and four (!) stockings are hung with care. Happy that our stockings were still in stock this year so we could get a matching one for little G!
Some ornaments, holiday candles, and a little Santa friend on our sofa table.
And my usual hurricanes full of ornaments across the dining room table. Simple but pretty.
Our decorated tree in all her glory. I have called this empty corner of the living room the “Christmas tree corner” since we moved in way back in May, and it’s so fun to watch it come to be. It is also really fun to decorate our new house because we love it here so much, and it’s nice to finally be able to picture ourselves living here many Chistmas-es to come.
(Gratuitous baby-sleeping-in-front-of-ornaments photo)
And finally, the advent calendar! This was a gift from when Cullen was born, and I knew he’d be old enough to do it this year. He is really into moving the Santa every day, but I made the mistake of telling him that we’d open all the presents once Santa reached the 25. So despite moving him to the correct number each morning, you can guess where Santa mysteriously ends up by the end of each day…
And last but certainly not least – the annual Santa photo. I didn’t go the year Cullen was a baby, but we did go last year and he was scared and cried. I had a feeling he was going to love it this year, but you never know for sure. I talked it up big time, and he didn’t miss a beat. He marched in there and jumped straight onto Santa’s lap before I could even take his coat off. I was so proud, since he can actually be somewhat hesitant and shy around new people.
We didn’t get a good picture – Cullen looks confused and Graham looks insane – but the smile on Cullen’s face through the ten minutes in there was well worth my $23. He chatted up Santa, showed him the Bert figurine he carried in, and told him all about the basketball hoop he hopes to get this year. Such a sweet thing to watch! And bonus points to Graham for not crying a single tear.
So that’s how we’ve been celebrating so far this year! My family arrives tomorrow, and the real celebrations kick in then. It really is the most wonderful time of the year.