On the twenty-fourth day we partook in some of our family Christmas Eve traditions. We made fresh cookies for Santa, had our Chrismas Eve fish dinner (Italian tradition), went to mass, drove around looking at Christmas lights, and ended our night with our special Santa postal box.
We started off the morning with dad’s special breakfast. Brad is the breakfast cook in our house, so he was more than happy to fire up the griddle to make a breakfast feast. Marshall and I were playing in the living room as Brad cooked; that’s when something caught my eye outside. What was out there? Ten little ‘reindeer’! I quickly called Marshall and Brad over and we watched as a group of six to the right of our house, and four to the left, made their way across the street ever so slowly before disappearing into the woods. Santa must have sent them as a practice run.
|Brad & Marshall watching all the reindeer|
On the twenty-third day we went to Elf’s Day Out. Elf’s Day Out is an activity day put on by Roeland Park’s community center. It is a three hour event comprised of ‘gingerbread’ house decorating (using graham cracker), lunch, and swimming!
Marshall was very excited when he saw all the stuff to make his gingerbread house. We handed him his graham cracker to stick onto the milk carton and he started eating it instead. Graham crackers are one of his favorite snacks after all. Once we were able to get him to understand the concept of using the graham crackers as siding/ roofing he was all about decorating.
|Carefully making his holiday house|
On the twenty-second day we had our first accumulative snowfall in the KC metro region! We ditched our original plans for the day to play in the winter wonderland. Brad and I were unsure how Mads would react, since he is a little freeze baby, but he embraced the snow like a true Minnesotan.
We started by grabbing Marshall’s snow tube that his nano gifted him last year. He was never able to use it so this was a real treat. Brad had a lot of fun getting it ready- can’t you see his excitement?
|This is what dads are for when you can’t
find any of the various air pumps/ mini compressors you have.
On our twenty-first day we made our annual trip to Whoville; something we have done since Marshall was only two months old!
Marshall loved walking into Whoville; there was so much to do! Multiple craft tables and even Ms. Helen (from the Winter Solstice celebration) was on hand to help the children make who-hats. She remembered Marshall; approaching me to say how excited she was to see us there and gushing over Marshall’s charm. Marshall had so much fun coloring on mirrors, decorating a Grinch mask, and other crafts.
On the twentieth day of our twenty five days we had our first annual Dingman Christmas party. We decided that the last Friday before Christmas we should have a movie night with a Christmas themed pizza party, movies, and crafts. It was kind of on a whim so it was just us this year- when I say on a whim I mean, we decided this at noon today since the freezing rain made travel difficult. Hopefully next year we will be able to have family and friends over and do this on a slightly larger scale.
We started it off by making a large Christmas tree alfredo pizza, complete with chicken and mini pepperoni ‘ornaments’ and spinach trimmings. It was fun to make and delicious to eat!
On the nineteenth day of our twenty five, Marshall made some more fun crafts at home. This last week of work before the holidays has been a tiring one for me- that, paired with the threat of freezing rain on the roads, made us decide to stay in and do crafts while Brad had court (for work).
As I was leaving work, I was bombarded with sweets galore from coworkers and parents alike. It was so nice, and I so appreciated that everybody thought of me and went out of their way to make such yummy treats for myself and other coworkers (thank you!). I was truly buried under holiday delights and I’m not supposed to eat these sugary treats for my health stuff, so I was wondering what I should do with these delicious wonders. I would never dream of throwing out someone’s hard work, and I always hear my Grandma V’s voice in the back of my mind telling me wasting food is a sin. That’s when I remembered all the people I see on my drive home.
On the eighteenth day Brad took Mads to the zoo while I worked! The Kansas City zoo just added a penguin exhibit so the boys have been itching to go see both of their favorite animal.
On the seventeenth day of our twenty five days we took a trip over to Kansas and back in time to see the 50’s Christmas house and the rest of the JOCO museum.
The 50’s Christmas was a special tour we set up through a 50’s model home that was built to show off the ‘future of technology’ for 1950’s Kansans. It was amazing to see what luxuries people of the fifties applied electricity to. The vintage Christmas decor was pretty interesting and Marshall loved the tin Christmas tree and all the vintage toys little boys would receive- like Howdy Doody and a real pigskin football.
|Little Marshall doo-woppin around the Christmas tree.
The car was his favorite part, typical Mads.
On the sixteenth day we went to the Independence library for Stonelion Puppetry’s performance of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas‘. We are big fans of Stonelion performances, we went to their ‘Mother Earth‘ show for mother’s day- that was an outdoors performance with 9-14 ft tall puppets.
Before the show the puppeteers were visiting the children and teasing them. Marshall loved goofing around with the puppeteers and other kids but he was definitely interested in the toys strewn about the set of “Kris K’s Toy Store”.
|Waiting for the upcoming show|