Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas 2011

Oh Christmas, how we love you!

You remind us of our Savior's birth.  You make us givers.   You bring families together.  You stress us out.  You make Lakeland Drive a nightmare.  You are all lit up & decorated.  You are just so dern festive!

This year was extra special because of a little red-headed dude.  We focused more on activities than presents, since he doesn't even know what a present is.  In my opinion, it is craziness to spend a ton of money on presents for a child who has all he needs.  But, that didn't mean we didn't enjoy the season!

Early in December, the family loaded up and headed to the city of lights, Canton.  We browsed the streets, rode carousels & fire trucks, drank hot chocolate, ate beignets, and viewed the beautiful lights..
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This was the courthouse in the movie A Time to Kill.
This was where my boyfriend Matthew's office was in the movie.  Just kidding, MM's got nothing on Rudy.
Speaking of Rudy, he & dude rode in a carousel car together.  First came tears, then came smiles.
Mother had to get in on the fun.
As did I...
They also have a few animation displays set up.  They are pretty cool and kind of freaky at the same time.  
Looks like Santa forgot Dude's name...
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I'll bet Mrs. Claus will remind him..
That is if she'll ever get out of the kitchen...  Wonder what she's pouring in that glass?  I'm guessing a Christmas toddy:)

Speaking of kitchen, we made grandma's ginger cookies.  Well, that is Con and I, dude just ate them..  They are a pain in the rumpa pum pum to make & definitely didn't turn out like grandma's (does anything ever?) However, we did manage to polish off 40 cookies in less than 24 hours, so I guess they weren't to bad.

We have thoroughly enjoyed our Christmas classic pop-up books.  I payed a whole $1.00 (ok maybe it was $2) for these pop-ups at a garage sale.  They will be packed away when Christmas is over and brought out every year!  I spy a Christmas tradition...
I know it looks wordy, but the pop-up illustrations are beautiful and they only have around 5 pages total, so they are not too long!  They easily keep the attention of a toddler who says, "ooohhh" when you turn the page and then tries to rip off the pop-up.
Speaking of books, my bff kelley & her fabulous mom debbie, sent dude the sweetest gift in the mail- a customized storybook collection of Hagan's adventures with his 3 buds: Jacob, Kinsley, and Ash..  It was so thoughtful and perfect!
Can you guess what dude liked the best in this box?
If you guessed the popcorns, then you must be a boy mom.  I caught that little punk chomping down on one.  I gave up on the "santa is watching" trick a long time ago.  Geesh.

We also went to junior high basketball games to see C play!
He looks like Justin Bieber and is a total 7th grade ladies man.

The best part of the holidays was the boys being out of school!  They stayed an entire weekend with us:)  Needless to say, dude loved it!

Friday night we had Christmas at the Rhodes residence.  There is never a dull moment & we rung in the night with good food, good singing, and good laughs..
Thank you Mammy for the entertainment.  And for singing "Christmastime Pretty Baby," three times.
She wasn't the only one who entertained!  
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Dude loved the entertainment!
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Family Love
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Christmas day was spent at Linda & Ashley's house in Petal!  She cooks for us every year & it is such a treat.
Plus, we get to see this little guy.
Oooh how I love those sweet cheeks!
Here are her decorations, menu, and food..
There's no topping that Christmas Dinner!  I can assure you that it  tasted just as good as it looked...
Santa Claus even showed up.  
We're still not too impressed with ol' Santa, but dude had a blast playing with cousin's cool toys.
I'm not sure why he always ends up with no clothes on?  Maybe he's messy like his momma?
Anywho, here is a shot of cousin's beautiful, soft hair!  His hair is so red it makes Hagan's look blonde...

This has been my favorite Christmas so far & I'm truly blessed.  Thanks for reading:)


Betty Hodge said...

I haven't commented before but I <3 your blog. I love how you <3 the simple things in life & your vision for your life/family. I adore your blogs & am so proud to see how wonderful your marriage/family is. Your son is so darn cute too!!

The Allen Family said...

Thanks Betty! That means so much.
I was so impressed with Debbie's Christmas cards, you did a great job on the photos.