Monday, December 15, 2008

Holidays

I've been meaning to keep an ongoing list of things we've done this holiday season - for our scrapbook (since I am prone to forget EVERYTHING lately - and this blog serves as my journal). So here it goes:

  • Relief Society Christmas Party - Friday December 5th: Cory and I were asked to be on a committee for our ward's annual Relief Society (big) Christmas dinner and somehow ended up in charge of the food. We didn't have to cook all the food - but coordinate it and make sure it was ready to serve Friday night. Talk about stress! We ended up with way less people than we had planned, and a TON of food leftover. It was good to be a part of, and helped me to appreciate those who have coordinated events like this in the past. It was a GREAT feeling to have it over with though.
  • Storybook Cavalcade Parade - Saturday December 6th: I posted a scrapbook page of this already, in the afternoon we attended the local Storybook Cavalcade Parade. It's one of our favorite parades that Cedar City puts on each year and the boys enjoyed themselves. Gabe was disappointed that they didn't throw out candy like they do in so many of the parades, but we did enjoy the nice weather and had fun with our friend's the Smith's.
  • Festival of Trees/Fantasy in Frost - Saturday December 6th: Later that evening we went into a festival that the city had (not sure of the name of it off the top of my head). It was like a festival of trees, a small craft boutique, and you could sit on Santa's lap and have your picture taken. Last year we got the cutest picture of the boys on Santa's lap so I was excited to do it again this year. Ha - not quite the case this year. I was really diappointed because when the lady taking the picture took it she looked in her camera and said, "Oh - how cute! That's one of the best shots I've gotten all night!" So I had high hopes. But when we picked up the picture...I wasn't impressed. Oh well - better luck next time huh? When we were visiting Santa we ran into our friends the Smiths and ended up staying to watch their little girl's dance performance. Gabe and Hunter both LOVED watching all the cute little girls dancing. Hunter kept cheering and even imitating some of the dance moves. Gabe sat still, watched intently and got upset when we were getting ready to leave. We ended up staying a bit longer than we had planned because the boys were having such a great time. My favorite comment was when the 3-4 year old girls got up to dance. They had these adoreable red and white polka dot dresses on and when they were going on stage Gabe yelled out, "Hey - we have that wrapping paper. Our wrapping paper matches those girls!" He was right - the dresses did look just like some of my favorite wrapping paper :). He also was quite concerned when one of the little girls was scared and left the stage before the performance. He said, "Wait - you can't start without that one! You need that one to dance with you!" It was so funny for me to see my two little BOYS want to watch little girls dance and enjoy it so much. Glad they had fun!
  • Driving around to look at lights - we took a trip out to look at the lights one night this week. We put on the Christmas music and drove around town. It was fun to see the boys looking for fun decorated houses. We passed one that was so cool - it was really well lit - but then there was a sign that had a radio station listed on it. You would tune to that radio station and the lights were syncronized with the music - it was quite the show! Gabe's favorite that night was a big Grinch inflatable decoration in someone's yard - he was pretty sad when we didn't see anymore of those.
  • Trip to St. George to the Tuachan - December 12th: I had really wanted to go to the Christmas concert that they put on every year at the Tuachan - but had to miss it because of our RS Christmas party. But the Tuachan has a nativity program that they run through December that I wanted to go to. So Friday night we loaded up the car and headed to St. George. First we stopped at In-N-Out burger for dinner. Then we headed to the St. George Temple to see their nativity display and walk around the visitor's center. Gabe loves the statue of the Christus and so we sat through that short presentation. I love watching my boys faces so enthralled with the large statue of the Savior. Then we headed out to the Tuachan. They did a nativity presentation with music, narration, live animals, actors - it was very touching and well put-together. I would like to make it a tradition as a family. Afterwards Gabe was pretty insistant that we ride the "train" that they had there and see Santa. Hunter still wasn't a huge fan of Santa, but Gabe did a better job this time. We tried talking a lot about how Jesus is the reason we celebrate Christmas, and I think that Gabe got at least a little bit of that spirit. We ended the night with a trip for me into Target to get some of my last Christmas gifts for the boys and we headed home.
  • Toys-for-Tots: I have wanted to encourage the boys to give to others through the holidays. We have done it as a family in the past, but I want it to be something they cherish and enjoy. We had talked about how some kids don't get toys and presents for Christmas and that made Gabe really sad. So all week long he talked about how we were going to go to Walmart and "buy lots and lots and lots of presents for all of those kids - you know - the ones who don't have toys?" So we braved the Saturday Christmas-time crowds of Walmart and let the boys each pick out a toy to give to Toys-for-Tots. Gabe wanted to buy all the toys in the store (and I wish we could have afforded to) but after much deliberation we picked the toys out and let the boys put them in the collection bins. I thought Gabe would have a hard time giving the toys away when it came down to it (he picked something he would have liked to keep) - but he was so good about it.
  • Light Parade - December 13th: Another parade! But this one wasn't quite like we had hoped. A big snow storm had been working its way into the area and started dumping snow right before the parade was supposed to start. Gabe had been so excited about the parade that we decided to brave the weather and see if they were still having the parade. We sat in the car and watched what there was of the parade, and what we could see through the snow. There weren't many people participating, and it was chilly - but we had fun together. That's what it was about though huh - being together.
  • Creche Festival - December 14th: One of my favorite traditions we have is attending the local Creche Festival every year. One of the churches has musical performances, a children's nativity and a cultral hall full of nativity displays. There are nativities from all over the world and I love seeing the different ways that the Savior is depicted in these. There are children's play-nativities, beautiful glass nativities, wooden ones, plastic ones, fabric ones, paintings - a huge variety. It's a good reminder of the reason we celebrate the season and gave us another chance to talk about the Savior with the boys.
  • We have more things coming up this week - tonight we're making gingerbread houses with some friends for FHE, we have a breakfast with Santa for the boys, making and delivering neighbor gifts and a few more fun things planned.


3 comments:

Rhien Family said...

wow- You guys have been busy!

I think I got tired just reading what you all have done this Christmas season. I think the live nativity would be cool.

Brian & Charlotte Carper said...

When our kids were little, we always gave to the angel tree and we would pick a name that was the same sex and age as our kids and they would help decide what gift to get for the child.

It was always a really important and wonderful part of our Christmas. I'm glad you have started the tradition with your boys. Love, Aunt Charlotte

Sandra said...

Wow. I kNOW it makes me tired just reading the list. What lovely traditions and memories you are making for your children.

Love you--take some time for yourself, no matter what. Love, Sandra