28 January 2015

Partying it Up With the Old Folks

This year, my dad is the President of the Men's Golf League at Sunbird.  Supposedly, one of his duties was to dress as Santa Claus for their Christmas party in the ballroom.  Well, apparently, he was also supposed to ask my mom to be Mrs. Claus before signing them both up for this lovely task.  She wasn't all that excited about playing the part, and when her foot started flaring up and the doctor instructed her to stay off her feet, well that was the perfect reason to bow out.  So, guess who got roped into being Mrs. Claus in training?!  Yep, you guessed it.  ME.  The night before the party, I had my parents ask if it would be okay if we could have the girls come and help out as my little elves.  My mom asked where I was going to come up with an elf costume for them at such late notice, but oh ye of little faith, Target to the rescue!  

I found two elf pajamas for the girls and even an elf costume for David (who was all too eager to dress in tight pants) and had them purchased the next morning!  They looked absolutely adorable and were the HIT of the party!

Ryan said I looked like Lily Tomlin here!

Liv waved like she was in a pageant the entire time!

We've already been asked to come back and do it again next year!

One of our favorite holiday activities in Arizona is attending the Golf Cart parade at my parents community.  The participants decorate their carts with lights and ornaments and bows and then ride around the golf course while the people in the neighborhood look on.  We have done this for the last three years and were lucky enough to get a cart again this year (with a plastic covering around it to keep us warm) so we weren't all squeezed in one cart.

The girls love it, and some of the participants REALLY go all out in decorating their carts.  Of course, the cookies, cupcakes, and hot chocolate at the end are also a big hit!

This is what happens when you hand someone your fancy camera.  But, hey, look at that amazing gingerbread house that went COMPLETELY over the golf cart! 

Can't wait to see how they top this one next year!


25 January 2015

Oh Hey There, 2015

Oh yikes....that was some 6 week hiatus I took, huh?!

I am {obviously} super behind on blogging.  But, I'm working on it - I promise!  So, we're going to kick off a series of posts that are in the docket with a good ol' miscellaneous post.  I know you love those!

➸ ➸ Let's start off with a couple of cute pictures of my girls.  Oh man, they are too much.  

➸➸ The girls gave out advent calendars to their classmates again this year.  I just love this tradition we've started.  Their classmates were all so excited to get them - especially when they realized they had chocolate inside! 

➸➸ I took Sydney to school one morning and saw a fun craft up on her wall and knew I had to do them at home!  We had Riley over that afternoon and made three versions of little elves.  They turned out so cute!

➸➸ It was Christmastime, so obviously we spent a lot of time at Target! ��

➸➸ My mom sent the girls a box of Cheryl's sugar cookies and tubs of Cheryl's frosting so we could decorate our own cookies.  We invited the neighbor girls over and after they decorated 2 cookies each, I realized that I was going to want to eat some of the cookies too, so I let them go off and play instead! 

➸➸ And, let's end this randomness with two cute pictures of Sydney, shall we?  Sydney holding a baby and Sydney with a fresh haircut?  Don't mind if I do!

We made it!  It's a Christmas Miracle!!!
Stay tuned for some more Christmas pictures! 

11 December 2014

The Mall Santa

So, as I mentioned a few posts back, before Thanksgiving we went to see Santa at the mall.  HGTV had set up a really cool Santa experience that we wanted to check out.  I don't normally do Santa pictures {where I have to pay for them}, but I was in need of a Christmas picture for our advent calendars we hand out, so I decided to spring for it.

The experience was really fun -- the girls got "scanned" and made it on the nice list, they made a couple elfie videos, and they were able to peek into Santa's workshop while the elves were busy working.  And, then, then they were able to sit on Santa's lap and tell him their wishes for Christmas. {Olivia wants a secret doll and Sydney wants a unicorn.  So, good luck with that, Santa!}

Santa was such a looker -- man, he was super authentic looking.  But, gosh darn it, he was tired.  So tired, in fact, that he fell asleep a couple times.  Once while holding Olivia and then again while holding Sydney.  Seriously.  He kept trying to wake himself up by widening his eyes, but bless his heart, it wasn't working.

See what I'm talking about?!

I think our advent calendars turned out really cute.  The girls gave one to each of their classmates -- the kids were so excited!

08 December 2014

Church Date

We've been trying out a new church these last few weeks with some of our neighborhood/school friends, and while it is a style that is reallllly contemporary feeling to me, I know that both Olivia and Sydney love it.  I love that the location is close, we have friends there, and that the girls are happy and learning about God.   A few Sundays ago, Olivia and Riley showed up in the same gray color scheme and I just had to snap some pictures.

The message that Sunday was on the things that can sculpt our lives and there was a guest artist who was doing a sculpture the whole service.  After we picked up the girls, we took them up to see his work.  He was so sweet with the girls and he let them each add a piece of clay to his sculpture.

I can only hope that we are choosing sweet friends who will help shape our girls' lives in the best way possible.

Beauty and the Beast with My Big Girl

A couple months ago, some of our friends asked Olivia and me to go see Disney's Beauty and the Beast up at the Orpheum over Thanksgiving weekend.  I wasn't sure what our plans were for the holiday, so I sadly said I couldn't commit.  Well, as luck would have it, we were not only in town for the weekend, but we were able to get two seats with our friends so that we could attend the show with them.

In the week or so leading up to the musical, we listened to lots of Beauty and the Beast music and watched the movie.

After our Elf in the Shelf breakfast, Olivia and I started getting fancied up and headed downtown with our friends.  The show was fantastic, and the girls really enjoyed it.  I was so amazed by all the costumes and the music.  My favorite part was the performance of Be Our Guest!  It was really spectacular to see all the costumes, hear the singing and watch the dancing.  I tried to explain to Olivia that she was learning to do those very things in her musical theatre classes each week!

I love being able to do fun things like this with my sweet girl and her friends!

Welcome Back, Bunky and Snowflake Sparkle

... or Noflake Parkle as my little Sydney says.  Sometimes those S's just don't roll off the tongue like they should.

Looking at our end of November and full-on December calendar,  I realized that even though I thought we were taking a more laid-back approach to the holidays, we really weren't.  Not sure who didn't get the memo, but clearly they didn't.  So, our elves had to come back a few days before December.  Sadly, pretty much all of our Christmas decorations were still up in the attic, so I sort of had to wing it, but I think it turned out okay.  The girls were impressed and excited and really, that's all that matters!

We are doing the 25 wrapped Christmas books for advent again this year and we had enough that each of the girls were able to get their own set!  {Special thanks to my mom for helping me wrap these!}  The girls have been loving them.  Tonight, Olivia opened a Fancy Nancy Splendiferous Christmas and she got SO excited!  She kept screaming, Fancy Nancy!  It's Fancy Nancy!  Sydney opened hers and it was a lift-the-flap book with a Christmas tree on the cover, so she started screaming A Chritmas tree!  A Chritmas tree!  I love how excited they get to open a book!

➹ Olivia's donut face! ➹

➹ Sydney's donut face! ➹

Our elf brought the girls some pajamas the night before {again, thanks Mom for making their beds and laying those out for us while we were at the zoo} and a cool activity book!

These smiles -- they sure make getting up early and making little reindeer donuts worth it!  Love them to pieces.