Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Flashback to last Christmas with Elyse:

--The season started off on December 4th with our Ward Christmas Party. Santa Clause came to visit all the children and was extra excited to see Bishop. For those of you who do not know the Bishop is my father who at the time had Elyse in his hands as everyone was singing “Here comes Santa Clause…”. Santa came running in to give Bishop a hug and gave Elyse such a fright! She jumped out of “gandpa’s” (as Elyse would say it) arms and ran
across the table to mommy.

As you can see below the year before turned out so well (mostly because
was still pretty young).

So I was determined to get her picture again this year and she was not very
happy. As you can see:
A-the picture turned out blurry
B- you don’t really see her face because she was too busy burying it into
my shoulder and clinging on for dear life!
However if you notice, she was willing to reach out to take the candy cane from Santa.

--Our next Christmas adventure was decorating the tree. That same night we also went to Wray’s to check out the decked out trucks. Now if you take notice Elyse is waving at the camera with a jolly spirit while in daddy’s arms and the next she is screaming and would not let go of him!
We continued to walk around the parking lot. As we decided to leave
we walked by a truck that had a few dogs and distracted her enough to get a few more pictures. As Ben and I pulled out in wonder of what just
happened I turned to look at the tree they light each year and saw low and behold Santa Clause sitting beneath it!

We felt so bad about her horrible experience that we let her stay up past
bed time. We figured it better she relax some than go to bed frightened.
As you can see during that time she managed to cuddle and watch
basketball with daddy, try on mommy’s hat with her gloves and eat a ho ho.

--A few evenings later we went to the drive thru nativity scene and what a great memory to have! We also tried Journey to Bethlehem, we were absolutely FREEZING afterwards but the three of us really enjoyed it. It was amazing! We decided to keep it a tradition and took Addalyn to it this year as well.

--OK I have to add these pictures because I think they are adorable and were taken around this time. As I was sleeping in one morning, Elyse and daddy were playing around and thought it would be funny to take a picture with her as a doll up on the shelf.

--Christmas Eve consisted of putting out pumpkin pie and a letter for Santa.
--Christmas morning was better than I could have imagined. I love how confused she looks as we are at the table to see what Santa left.

At our house Santa hides your stocking after he has filled it. Elyse liked to
be clean and have things cleaned, she liked to have everything in its place
and would put things where they belonged. As I set her on the ground to
tell her of Santa hiding the stocking and the need to find it, she had already
noticed something out of place. She was pulling the stocking out from
underneath the entry table as dad was trying to get the camera ready to
take a picture…good thing he had not set it down yet or we would have
missed it! Elyse was unsure about where it belonged at first but then her
face lit up with excitement as she realized it was full of goodies.

Yes, I know what you are thinking. “What? Movies?” and “She is smiling
while holding them?” Elyse did not like television, obviously she had no
idea what they were, and to answer the first question we were desperately
trying to get her to cuddle under a blanket with us while watching a movie.
Alright so maybe that was a little more my vision than Ben‘s. She was
always good about sitting on the couch with me as we watched one of the
princess movies we got for her. However, it was nothing like I had
envisioned, there was a bowl of popcorn in between us and as soon as it
was gone so was she.
Next we gave her one of the best presents ever. She got her kitchen set (we
stayed up the night before trying to put it together)! I am so happy that I
videoed instead of just taking pictures. Some may say the video is too long
but it is one of my favorites. Ben tried several times to get her to say “hi” in
this but she was video shy (realize the video and not camera shy..big
deference to her). Ah what I would give to have had her say “hi” in this video.
But just the pure look of happiness on her face is enough. I love how she
points and looks at me like “do you see it too mom?”. When she is on the
phone if you listen close she does say "OH" and "done". I have just spent
about 2 hours trying different ways to upload the video and just discovered
they only take videos that are 100 MB max and the video is 238MB ugh! So I
will upload it to facebook for those of you that would like to view it.

--Here are some pictures of Christmas at my side of the families house:

--And for some reason I cannot find any pictures of her at Ben’s families house so the year before will have to do:

Monday, December 5, 2011


Saturday night we got the Christmas tree and for now it sits in the corner undecorated. I was hesitant of how it would feel to decorate the house this Christmas, but I know Elyse would want us to trim the tree and deck our halls with boughs of holly.

Her first Christmas we decided to skip the tree, but last year we got our first and she LOVED it. We tucked her in bed shortly after getting it in the house, and Ben and I adorned the tree with lights, most of the ornaments, and an angel. When she awoke the next morning we turned on the Christmas tree lights before going to get her. As she came out she could not believe her eyes, it was absolutely captivating to her. She stood there pointing to the angel we had bought together. “WOW!!!” was the first thing to come out of her mouth as she then ran to the tree. Our angel moves its wings and changes many different colors. She was so very careful with putting up the rest of the ornaments and making sure not to bump any others. Who knew Christmas trees could be so MAGICAL and leave such WONDERFUL memories!?!

We are so pleased to have that memory with Elyse, that it just seemed impossible to not put up a Christmas tree this year. As Ben and I were outside shaking it out, putting on the tree stand, dragging it in, and attempting to straighten it out it was hard not to feel Elyse’s presence there with us. It was as though she was jumping about and running all around us, you could just feel her excitement exploding throughout the room. I do not know if it was the fact that we were going ahead and decorating this year or if it was that she just LOVES Christmas trees. Maybe it was a little bit of both. If we were able to feel her that much with just putting the tree in the house, we can’t wait to see how much of her we feel when we decorate the tree tonight for FHE!

Looking at dad thinking, "Is mom done yet? Can I go play with my kitchen set?!?"

We stayed up late that night trying to decorate most of the tree to surprise Elyse in the morning.