Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Thanksgiving Weekend 2013

This is my 1st of 6 catch up posts. We have had so many wonderful moments this Fall, I can't do just one big post!  This is a good thing and I hope to have them all up and posted by December 15...but we will see!  Since we just finished Thanksgiving, we will start there and get caught up from there.

Nicholas has been ALL about holidays this Fall.  He LOVED Halloween and Thanksgiving. All month he would ask if it was Thanksgiving day yet.  He kept telling me he wanted to eat some turkey!  Haha. The month of November flew by for us thanks to a long football season, but last week we made sure Nicholas understood that it was finally Thanksgiving week!  They spent the month talking about it at school and he actually started telling me all about how the "pirgrims came to Amerca on the Mayfrower to Prymuth Wock, then the Indians came to Amerca and they showed the pirgrims how to grow corn...which we have to eat on Thanksgiving." That was exactly how he said the words and told the story, even though he didn't understand the Indians were already here. Haha! 

Last year after all the insanity of 3 years of taking Nicholas to dinner after dinner, we decided to host one big family Thanksgiving.  We hosted 13 of our family for dinner at 4:00 and it was perfect!  Everyone got to spend time with Nicholas, no one felt rushed or hurried to get to the next meal and we were blessed to have all of our immediate family in our home at one time.  It was definitely the way to go and plan to make it a tradition!

My mom and I split up the meal.  Thankfully I have a large refrigerator in my garage, so we got together on Wednesday and made all of our sides and desserts.  I made sweet potato casserole, broccoli casserole, cranberry salad, pecan pie (truth, I bought it, something had to give and I chose for it to be the pie), pumpkin trifle, corn (because you apparently HAVE to have to it according to my 3 year old!) and deviled eggs.  My mom made dressing, mac and cheese (it is fabulous! Look for the recipe soon!), pumpkin pies, and green beans.  Michael smoked our 23 pound turkey all day and it was so good! 

Needless to say, no one left hungry!

Nicholas watched the parade and there is just something so special about watching the parade you watched every year as a kid with your own child.  This was his face when he saw Santa!  Priceless! 

My little cousins dressed as a pilgrim and Indian one year when they were little (they are now 19 and 22!). Their mom wanted me to dress Nicholas in Cody's old pilgrim costume and I will tell you, it was the sweetest thing ever!  

I love this picture using both Nicholas this year and Cody in 1997!  Again, priceless memories that are being passed down through generations. 

Thanksgiving night my mom and I kept our own tradition...Black Friday shopping!  I know it isn't good that stores open on Thanksgiving night, however for those of us who have limited time to shop, decorate, and pull off holiday gatherings, it works great for us. We started at Target around 8:30.  We loaded up on some toys, gifts, and Christmas lights and got in line. This was my view from the back of line. Haha!  It only took 40 minutes to weave in and out of every aisle from the front right corner of the store to checkout. 

From there we went to the mall.  We found some wonderful buys off our lists and the only line we waited in was for Pandora to open at midnight.  They let 2 in at a time and it was great. No crowd, no line (other than outside) and much less stressful than Pandora is on a Saturday in December! 

We actually got hungry and had a snack at 2am! Haha! 

I got in my bed at 3:36. It was a successful night and I felt much better knowing my shopping is 90% done!  Nicholas slept until 9:00 Friday, then it was up and time to decorate for Christmas! We started in his playroom with his Disney and pirate tree. I love how it turned out! So fun and festive, just like a kid's tree should be (I'm saving a picture of the final product for my home tour, but here is a sneak peek!)

Next we tackled the "big tree" in the living room.  I had more help than I could ever imagine. Nicholas didn't really want to help with his tree, but he was ALL about our family tree!  He pretty much decorated the bottom 1/3 with all of the plastic glittery ornaments while I worked on the tip 2/3 and the topper.  4 hours and 5 broken ornaments (luckily only 1 "good" ornament!) and we were finished!

I had quickly put up the 4ft tree I usually put in my room in between the two larger ones, but after looking at it from bed Friday night and Saturday morning, I decided we needed to upgrade to a 6ft like the playroom tree. Nicholas and I went to Walmart for stakes to stake down our exterior lights for Michael and came home with a new tree. Oops! :-) 

Nicholas quickly took claim to the small white tree and it is now in his room with his Cars ornaments, red, green, and gold. Next year I plan to make it a little more boyish, but for now, it's cute!

I will do a tour of our house and all of  the details closer to Christmas, but this is how we spent our long Thanksgiving weekend.  Yesterday we had a lazy pj day. It was definitely needed. This was view as I laid on the couch in sweats with my boy watching Disney Christmas movies all day! Perfect!