Merry Christmas!

Ok, just one last Christmas wish from us to all of you.

Hope you all have a wonderful celebration with family and friends.

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Embrace the Camera.

The Christmas celebrating begins tonight in our house and I am so excited to start some new traditions in our new home.

Anyway, today Dash is 16 months old which seems like an impossibility. In my hopes to keep him a one year old for the whole year here are some family snaps from almost 3 months ago. Yes the TV is on and no none are in focus.

Merry Christmas if we don’t see you until after the big day!

Christmas super cookies

My aunt and I went to town on some Christmas cookie decorating when she came for a visit.

She makes cakes and cookies for parties as a hobby so she doesn’t mess around with the royal icing.

Or rather, she does mess around a lot with the royal icing and as a result she can do some amazing things.

And now that it is almost Christmas it is finally time to eat them which is all that this boy cares about.

Just in time for Christmas…

We’ve started our own compound. We’ve had a hard time meeting our new neighbors so we are filling the neighborhood with people we already know, one house at a time.

Zach’s parents have officially moved in across the street. No seriously. Directly across the street. As I write this the moving truck is pulling into my yard to be able to back into their driveway. Kidding. (That better not happen or someone is going to anonymously report someone else to the homeowners association. Only kidding.)  Every morning I can look out our bedroom window and see if they have picked up their morning paper yet.

What it would look like if I were spying on my new neighbors from inside our house. But I'm totally not.

I think just about everyone is having some kind of visceral reaction when thinking of their parents or in-laws moving in across the street so I will end the suspense and tell you that we are incredibly pleased with this situation.

Neither of us grew up living close enough to grandparents to get to see them on a regular, unplanned basis. The idea of Dash getting to hang out with his grandparents anytime he wants makes me happy.

And just to keep myself honest I’ll say that the benefits are not all for Dash. If you want to hang out with me and Zach – we’re free! Anytime! Our babysitters are on call and are not only willing, but thrilled at the idea of getting us out of the house so they can get some Dash time.

So if you are interested in being part of our compound, let’s talk. I make great cookies and soup, and helping you figure out where to put your couches, but am not so good at raking the leaves. If you can live with that then we should be neighbors.

Oh, and you have to be able to deal with this guy:

Crafts for toddlers who eat crayons.

Last week Dash’s playgroup came over and we did a book exchange,

decorated Christmas cards for a nursing home,

(eating, um, decorating with crayons)

and tried to keep track of all the children in the madness, I mean, safe and controlled fun.

We moms realized that crafting with tots under two may be a little bit…ambitious, but we also liked the idea of teaching them about being generous and thoughtful by delivering the cards.

That part came today. I was not sure how it would turn out, but the kids were great. They handed out cards, looked cute, and then all sat eerily still while we took their picture.

They were so good we rewarded them with playtime at an open gym and Chick-fil-a.

I make what you pin.

I have mentioned before how I enjoy Pinterest. It is a great source of decorating ideas. But I am way too intimidated to pin my own things. I have way too much indecision so pinning some idea is too much commitment. Ridiculous, I know. What is great about Pinterest is that I can just copy what my friends like. I can follow other people’s “boards” and it’s like my personal “best of Pinterest” board. So beware, if you pin it I will probably try it or make it.

Here are some examples:

Keeping each year’s holiday card in an album:

putting past year’s photo cards on book rings so you can flip through them and enjoy again:

especially enjoyable for toddlers:

a place to hold Christmas cards:

picture frame on the door:

(ends up being easily switched out for each holiday)

a ball jar hung up for fresh flowers – when it is in season:

and a few others that I can’t post because they are Christmas presents for people out there who may be reading!

In summary I am a big fat copy cat so if you pin it and you give me access to your boards I will probably be making your ideas. Standby for my etsy shop called, I make your pins.