Category Archives: Holidays

Christmas 2013

At first, I felt like it was “too late” to post Christmas pictures seeing as we are now half way through January, but then I realized that I’M the one who uses this blog to look back at our memories and it’s NEVER too late to add something worth remembering to it, right?

Christmas 2013 was awesome. Santa was very very very (a bit too much) good to Mason and so were the Kohl’s $10 off a $10 purchase coupons LOL Christmas Eve he was convinced he was going to stay up all night and catch Santa (but fell asleep quickly) and it was nerve racking getting everything ready because I was scared to death he was going to wake up and catch us!!

We had him pose for a few pictures Christmas Eve




He agreed to take more pictures if he was allowed to make silly faces


Christmas morning – we’ve done this “Mommy and Mason coming down the hall” pose every Christmas so far and I hope we continue it until he’s, I dunno, 20 LOL



Charly was the official videographer of Christmas 2013


He was more than thrilled with his presents and very good about posing with them. Each present was more exciting than the last.





About half way through opening, he had a little melt down because he didn’t want to pick up the wrapping paper himself and he was mad that I wouldn’t let him do 100% of the opening of MY presents as well as his own. After a brief break for a Christmas cookie, he was back to having fun.



So much excitement and wonder. What an awesome Christmas!

Four Years of Santa Visits

Unlike the kids who are scared to death of Santa (thus creating the HILARIOUS “small child sobbing on Santa’s lap” pictures that I guiltily love….) Mason has always loved Santa. Well, he was a bit unsure his first Christmas (at 9 months old) but ever since then, Santa has been his buddy. Even the kind of creepy ones.


Mason’s Christmas List

Friday night, I sat down with Mason and had him make his Christmas list.

He sat in my lap and carefully thought of what he would like for Christmas. I wanted to do this before he became inundated with toy catalogues and (the very very few) TV commercials he sees.

So without further ado:

Mason’s Christmas list
(with zero prompting from Mom & Dad)
New tires for Mommy’s car so it can go through the snow *
Ninja turtles
Own 4-Leeler
Toy Cookie Maker
Basketball thing
New Mittens – Spiderman ones
Green Garbage Truck**

I just love how varied his list was. Cracks me up that the first thing he asked for was something for Mommy. What a sweetheart.

What’s on your kids Christmas lists?

*I don’t need new tires and have no idea why he thinks this
** This was added after a trip through ToyLand on Saturday


Christmas Morning

We celebrated Christmas morning just the three of us (five if you count Joe and Katze, who of course also got gifts)

Doing our traditional walk down the hall.
Mason saw all the presents under the tree and was excited. Squeals of “Santa brought me presents!!! There are presents under the tree from Santa!!” filled the air and brought big smiles to our faces.

We got right down to business and Mason started opening presents.
He wasn’t very thrilled when we tried to make him show US his presents so we could take pictures

But if HE could look at them, then all was well

He’s gotten so much better at unwrapping stuff since his birthday in March LOL
The fire truck was the one thing he’d asked Santa for (other than a candy cane….) so he was pretty excited to get it.

Presents from his friend Emma and her mom. We had to stop everything and read this book.

Excited about Thomas pajamas from Auntie Joy (I think Joe was jealous)

He was all about the stockings and wanted to open them all

Simple stocking – a light up toy and a candy cane.

This was his most amusing gift – we now have 23094923 blurry pictures of every present he got, taken from approximately 1.4 inches away. And lots of butt pictures too. LOL

Mason was SUPER excited about all of his presents and demanded “Open this, Mommy!” after every one and instantly wanted to play with each and every thing. We got smart this year and instead of doing our usually round robin (you open one, then I open one, then Daddy opens one) we let him open all of his and then let him play with his new toys while SuperDad and I and Joe and Katze opened ours. Other than Joe wondering why he had to wait so long for his presents, this made things go SO much smoother and we got through the morning with no tantrums. Yay!

Christmas morning was special. There were no tears and nothing but smiles and laughter all morning. You know Mason liked his presents when for the first time ever he didn’t want to go to Grandma’s. He wanted to stay home and play with his toys. I’d call that a success!

Christmas Morning 2011

Christmas Morning 2010

A Fun Christmas Meme

So I’m about two weeks behind the rest of the world on this one, but what’s new? We brought home our tree today and hopefully will decorate it tomorrow, so let’s get into the holiday spirit around here!

fun Christmas meme

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Definitely hot chocolate! It’s the only warm/hot drink I will drink and I LOVE it.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Wrapped, possibly all in the same paper (haven’t decided that yet) We learned last year that anything that is super large will be hidden in another room. (See “The Kitchen that Ruined Christmas”)

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? Colored!! I like white lights on some houses, but on most (including ours) colored are much more festive.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Nope.

5. When do you put your decorations up? Outside lights go up (but not on) whenever the last for sure “warm” (aka 35º) week occurs, inflatables go up in the beginning of December, and we try to get our tree the first or second weekend and decorate the inside of the house at that same time.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? Mashed potatoes. sorry, but I just LOVE mashed potatoes.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Riding around with my parents, brother, and Grandma looking at Christmas lights all over Milwaukee.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I really don’t remember. I DO remember fighting with a friend in 3rd grade in line for music class that Santa had to be real since he left presents at my house even when we were out of town so that meant it couldn’t POSSIBLY be my parents. Still haven’t quite figured that one out. LOL

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Yes, we open one. Since Mason came along, it’s been Christmas pajamas. I do like the idea I read on this meme about doing a box that contains Christmas pajamas, a movie to watch that night, snacks, a Christmas book, etc though.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? Lots and lots of penguins and then custom year ornaments both made by some crafty local friends and some greyhound and kitty ornaments as well.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? Dread it. I totally live in the wrong state.

12. Can you ice skate? I can but it’s been years.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? As a kid it had to be either the “fashion designer” plates I got (which is freaking HILARIOUS now since I never wear anything but jeans and a hoodie/t-shirt or my “Crackers in My Bed” game.

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you? Now it’s creating excellent memories for Mason. My family never really did anything for Christmas other than look at lights one or two nights and then spend half an hour opening presents, so I really want to create a bunch of fun traditions that Mason can look back on fondly.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Cookies or nutless fudge

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? From my childhood: Driving around looking at all the decorated houses. Newer: Watching Christmas movies while decorating the tree.

17. What tops your tree? Pine needles

18. Which do you prefer, giving or receiving? I kind of hate gifts. I never know what to buy anyone and then I feel badly when I get the perfect gift from them. Giving is awesome when you are struck with a great idea though!

19. Candy Canes: Yuck or Yum? They’re okay, but I probably average one a year, if that.

20. Favorite Christmas show? Either Elf or A Christmas Story.

21. Saddest Christmas Song? Not sure I know any?

22. What is your favorite Christmas song? “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas”

This time last year – All Dressed Up / Mason Makes Words

Two years ago – Down and Out / Christmas Traditions

TinyPrints Holiday Cards – $50 GC Giveaway

While I’m not a Christmas fanatic, I AM a Christmas card fanatic. Every year, we send out approximately 100 Christmas cards and receive about 150 and it’s by far my favorite Christmas tradition. I’ve done a photo Christmas Card since I got my cat, Buzz, in 2000 and every year since, the cards have gotten fancier, the mailing list larger, and as our family has grown, have included more and more pictures. Between our funny “greyhounds wearing hats and posing in front of the Christmas tree” and our “adorable baby dressed as Santa” our cards are something our extended family raves about! Oh, the pressure!

Enter TinyPrints

I’m sure if you’ve spent any time on the Internet, you’ve heard of TinyPrints. They make AWESOME photo cards, as well as lots and lots of other cool things (such as photo books and stationery) and they’re our #1 stop for Christmas Photo Cards.

When I try to decide where I’m going to order cards from, there are a few things I look for – a large variety that actually say “Merry Christmas” (so many places are really pushing “Happy Holidays” instead), the option for 3 or more photos, and most importantly, price that we can afford! Tiny Prints fits the bill for all three. In fact, they had 121 totally different “Merry Christmas” designs that had options for four (or more) pictures!

Here were some of my favorites:

And for those of you who celebrate Hannakah or prefer “Happy Holidays” instead, there are definitely lots of options on TinyPrints for you too! Even better, according to one of their Twitter representatives, you can actually CHANGE the text to reflect the appropriate holiday or sentiment on any of their cards. How cool is that?!

They are also almost always running special deals and promotions. Check those out here.

While I don’t have a single present bought and am totally in denial that it’s already November, all this talk about cards makes me want to put up my Christmas tree so I can get our annual photos taken. How about you?!!?

And now, what you’re really here  –

One person will win their very own $50 Tiny Prints Gift Code (which, for the average person, should take care of all your Christmas card needs!) Please enter in the Rafflecopter form below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I was provided a gift code of my own in exchange for writing this post. Despite the code, all opinions stated were 100% mine.  No other compensation was received. All photos posted are copyright TinyPrints.


Trick or Treating 2012

Halloween night was Mason’s 2nd time Trick or Treating. He came home from school SUPER tired and basically immediately started asking to go to bed, so I was pretty worried what the night would hold, but we made it out, in costume, and had a good time!

He got lots of “P.U.!!!! You stink!!!!” comments as well as oohed and ahhed over by many mothers, grandmas, and preteen girls. A lot of people thought he was girl, but I’m guessing that was because of his very un-macho costume. LOL He only said “Trick or Treat” twice (occasionally preferring to just hold up his bucket and say “Candy??” but he said Thank You 100% of the time (sometimes with prompting) By the time we were done, he could barely carry his bucket anymore but refused to let us dump it out.

Grandma B also got him a toy Mater car and that distracted him from his giant bucket of candy which is good because I was really hoping it going to be a battle. I’m thinking SuperDad and I will take our favorites and we’ll see the rest to the dentist for $1/pound and ask if we can have it in all pennies or nickels – Mason will be thrilled about putting THAT in his piggy bank!

All in all, a super Halloween with our Little Stinker!

Trick or Treat 2011