Our first official Christmas in Connecticut was a merry success. I honestly feel like we sucked every bit of holiday spirit out of the last week – watching Christmas movies by the fire, baking cookies, driving around to look at Christmas lights, and more. Christmas has always been my favorite time of the year, this Christmas being so extra special in our new home. I made sure to pause and close my eyes, soaking in all of the happiness, as much as possible.
We kicked off the holiday celebrations with Annabelle’s school play where she played the Angel who tells the Shepherds, “I have good news! Jesus is born!” Annabelle was given the very important role because her teachers agree she loves the spotlight. However, during rehearsals she developed a sudden shyness when it was her turn to speak. We didn’t know if she would say her line (which would have been fine) until it was showtime. But after the narrator told the audience Mary had baby Jesus, Annabelle shouted her line so loud and proud. I cried big happy proud Mama tears.
Baking Christmas cookies using Brandon’s Aunt Sandy’s secret recipe is a Christmas tradition we love dearly. The girls helped Brandon and I bake two batches of the delicious frosted sugar cookies over the weekend. We even shared some with family and friends (despite the protests from the girls).
Driving around to look at Christmas lights is another tradition I look forward to doing each year. We visited Hubbard Park in Meriden’s light display for the first time in a bajillion years. I brought Brandon to see them when we were dating but he doesn’t really remember it haha. We also drove throughout our town looking for twinkly lights and picking out the best house in each neighborhood.
The day before Christmas we made a special visit to see Santa Clause at the vineyard in town. They had a Christmas sing-a-long and Santa stopped by to see all of the little ones. Annabelle has never really feared him, but Ailey is a little skeptical. Annabelle happily hopped in his lap to tell him what she wanted for Christmas, but Ailey wouldn’t get too close. We heard her whisper to him she’d like a “biking helmet” though. I am so happy she said that to him because I almost forgot to buy one! Later in the evening Ailey disappeared and we found her creeping around Santa and asking him if he liked her boots. Everyone thought it was hilarious! When we came home the girls opened presents from their Grandparents in Georgia. It was a great Christmas Eve Eve!
Christmas Eve was here before we knew it and we were so excited to host it at our house with my immediate family. I couldn’t have been more joyful as our home was overflowing with so much spirit and happiness. We had a table full of food – everyone brought a little something – and we casually ate and drank until it was time for presents.
After exchanging gifts, our family headed home so we could get ready for Santa. We changed into our matching pajamas, sprinkled reindeer food in the front yard, made a plate of cookies for Santa and read “The Night Before Christmas.”
Christmas morning was exactly what I’ve been waiting to experience as a Mom. The girls were up before the birds, begging to see what Santa put under the tree. The looks on their faces when they saw the Christmas tree, the squeals of pure joy as they unwrapped each present carefully to find a Christmas wish inside – each moment was priceless.
The rest of Christmas Day was spent visiting family at my Aunt’s house and then my sister’s in-laws house. It was a long busy day! We had a feast of crab stuffed shrimp and steak at my sister’s in-law’s house, topped off with cupcakes and ice cream. The girls opened MORE presents, danced around the Christmas tree with their cousin Sloane, and then fell fast asleep in the car on the way home that night. We all woke up yesterday still tired from Christmas and laid around the house all day.
We aren’t going to take down our tree just yet… but I will slowly start putting the Christmas decorations away. I used to get really depressed immediately after Christmas ended, but realized with age it is silly to be sad it’s over. Instead I smile and reflect on everything we did this month, and prepare for the exciting new year ahead!