Christmas Eve

We started off Christmas Eve with donuts from our favorite bakery in Lehi. You know it’s going to be a great day when it starts off with donuts, am I right? We had lunch later in the day with Tj’s parents and brother’s family at Cubby’s then all went over to Eva’s grandparents’ house for lots of fun! The kids played bingo, decorated sugar cookies for Santa, had a little gift exchange, and then a Christmas Spiritual thought about following the footsteps of Christ. It was so sweet. We turned off the lights and then the kids had flashlights and went on a little scavenger hunt. We then wrapped up the night with the kids singing Christmas carols and opening up new jammies. Christmas is a whole new ball game with kids. It’s so magical and absolutely precious.

A Visit to Santa

We took the kids to see Santa on the 23rd of December. Eva had her list ALL ready to recite, and dang… that girl had some high expectations. She wanted a wedding barbie doll, a new princess dress, and a magic mermaid tail that changed colors in water. I told her I wasn’t sure if Santa made those. But she replied, “Yes, he does, he makes toys and is magic.”

Home Alone at the Orchestra

We were so lucky to get two date nights in ONE weekend in December. We rarely go on dates, and so to have two in a row was nuts. We had kind of had an off day though so it almost didn’t happen, but we already had tickets to see Home Alone at the Utah Symphony (they played the soundtrack while the movie played on a projector, it was awesome!) so we decided to still go.

We got off to a late start and my anxiety level was already at like a 9/10 (see previous postpartum aftermath post ha!) and then we hit TERRIBLE traffic heading up to Salt Lake. We were going so slow and changed lanes, and of course got into an accident. That delayed us another hour, since we had to wait for the police and do a report. Thankfully everyone was fine and the cars weren’t in terrible shape. I told TJ we should just head back but then we just started laughing at how terrible our whole day had been. We kept making up funny scenarios of where the guy who’s car we hit would have just yelled out the window and said, “Don’t worry about it, have a great day!” Or, “Thanks guys, you actually did me a favor.” Or, “Here’s one million dollars, don’t worry about my car!” Sounds really dumb when I write it out now, but it cheered us up (plus I treated myself to a diet coke!) and we ended up making the movie at intermission and caught the second half. Afterwards, we walked around Temple Square a bit and admired the temple and temple grounds where we were married in, all lit up in Christmas lights! It was a bittersweet date, our car still has a dent, but we had fun!

The Christmas Carol

My in-laws took all of us to see The Christmas Carol at the Hale Center Theater. We left the kids with TJ’s cousin and got to have a night out with all the adults. It was such a great production and made me realize how much of a Scrooge I sometimes can be, especially at Christmas. Hopefully I can learn a little bit from Charles Dickens and try to be kind and generous to all those around me… all year round!

The Nutcracker

My friend and I took our girls to see the Nutcracker performed by a dance company in Sandy at a high school. It was very family friendly and really cheap, so it was perfect to bring a four year old to. The girls really enjoyed it although some parts got a little long for them (some of those solos are long!), but overall it was a great afternoon. We then got cupcakes afterward to celebrate Eva’s birthday a little bit. Seeing the Nutcracker with daughters (or sons if they want to come, obviously) is a tradition I’m going to do each year from now on!


12th Day of Christmas: The Meaning of the Season

It’s been so fun to do these 12 Days of Christmas posts. It’s gotten me to post about more than just our daily life and think about something Christmasy every single day. But Christmas is obviously more than sparkly sweaters, glittery nails, and Mr. Bean’s nativity. I want to make sure you all know how much I love and appreciate the greatest gift we’ve all been given. The gift of Christ, the Savior to the World. Recently I’ve been relying on His atonement so much in my life, more than the repentance part. I’ve needed His grace to make up the difference in my life when I’m tired and when I feel inadequate as a mother. Life is hard and I’m so grateful for His love to help me each and every day. He sees our efforts and is watching over us with our Heavenly Father. So, this Christmas Day, take time to remember Him and the true meaning of Christmas. I love you all and hope you all have a great day celebrating!


10th Day of Christmas: Longfellow’s Christmas

This is my ultimate favorite Christmas video. The story is such powerful, Ed Herrman does such a great job narrating (I can’t believe he passed away!), and the music is beautiful. Take time to watch it and share it with others.

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along th’unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head:
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

Till, ringing, singing, on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,
Of peace on earth, good will to men!



Christmas Craft Exchange

I hosted a Christmas craft exchange party this week and was blown away by my crafty friends! Everyone was so shy about having their craft be opened, but each one was as awesome as the next!

So, everyone brought one craft wrapped up, then we played the left/right white elephant game and ended up with someone else’s gift. We went around and opened the gifts and the person who made the craft told how they made it. It was so fun and great to see some old friends and chat with new ones!

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Decorated presents (made out of boxes and wrapped with tinsel and garland)
Paper Trees (made from books, folded every thirty pages)
Homemade Purse
Wooden elf block set (decoupaged)

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Floral Arrangement
Leather Baby Moccasins
Advent Calendar
Christmas Print
Ornament Magnets
“Jingle All The Way” Shadowbox frame with bells inside
Burlap and Lace Christmas Trees
Wall Decoration-Wooden Star
Christmas Trees (Wooden and painted)
JOY letters (Wooden and painted)

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Gold Christmas Tree (Folded magazine, spray painted)
Mason Jar Candles with Snow (Epson Salt as snow)
Wall Decoration-Joy (wreath as the “O”)
Crocheted boot toppers

I really love hosting parties, but especially loved this one because not only was it Christmas themed, but also it was so fun to see what everyone came up with to create! Can’t wait for next year!


One Single Bell

I’m flooding my blog with Christmas videos this week. Here’s another one of my favorites!

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Let Him In

On Monday, I was so lucky to see the amazing Forgotten Carols show with my in-laws. I absolutely loved it. I had no idea that Michael Mclean was actually IN the show, along with his son and his wife! So neat. I was familiar with the music but had never actually seen the play. It really touched me and made me want to focus on the Savior this Christmas season. After all, that’s what it’s all about.

“Yes I did believe them Though I’d not seen a thing
I did not go to Bethlehem Or hear the angels sing
But there was something magic In the air
That made me feel as if I had been there

I knew that as the world moves on through time
There would be more stories just like mine
About the souls who’ve chosen to believe
In something that they never got to see

Do you think you’ll join us Though you’ve not seen a thing?
You were not there in Bethlehem To hear the angels sing
But if you feel the spirit In the air
Then just like me you’d know

That He was here, He was here
The King of kings, And Lord of lords was here”