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    It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

    Monday, December 12, 2011

    We've all been working hard on our holiday preparations lately. Saint Nicholas Day is over, we are dabbling in a new family tradition with our Elf on the Shelf, the kids had breakfast with Santa, my shopping is nearly done and the Christmas cards should arrive later this week for so I can mail them to everyone. This time of year always seems to move much more quickly than any other. Maybe that is because it is filled with excitement, anticipation and even a little dread. After all, busy schedules, work and school, the weather, and gift buying stress can really take a toll on everyone. But we are looking forward to a wonderful Christmas and New Year and will enjoy every fun and stressful time along the way! As I mentioned, we have started a new tradition with our Elf on the Shelf that St. Nick brought for the kids. If you aren't familiar with this, check out the website. Benjamin named our elf Ormint because "he looks like an ornament!" Mike and I have been having so much fun with hiding the little guy and making up mischievous things for him to do in the night. Here are some of the hiding spots/mischief:

      Elf on a Shelf - Day 6 Elf on a Shelf - Day 3 Elf on a Shelf - Day 2

    As far as we can tell, Benjamin believes the elf is magic.  It has been a good way to reinforce good behavior this time of year!

    This past weekend we made our yearly trip to Macy's for Breakfast with Santa along with my parents. I think this photo sums it up:
    Breakfast with Santa

    Lucy is changing so much every single day. She is an old pro at walking now and is picking up new words all of the time. She can now say "There you go!" and "Thank you!" She also now shakes her head yes or no if you ask her a question. Benjamin has a lot of fun asking her questions that she doesn't understand like "Lucy, do you want to eat some cockroaches?" She always shakes her head yes.  It is very exciting seeing her take in all this season has to offer.

    Benjamin is so excited for Christmas.  Every day after he wakes up he changes the Christmas countdowns we have throughout the house.  We've been keeping him busy with some new activities including acting class and "Little Hoopsters," a basketball class.  The acting class is done by the Rochester Civic Theatre.  He has been learning stage directions, touring the different rooms at the theatre and preparing for a very short (and unexpected - we only found out this weekend!) performance that will be his last class.  I think we have another actor in the family!  He loves it!!  We are a family of actors, but not athletes - at least not in team sports - so he's not exactly at the top of his basketball class.  However, he has such an enthusiasm for learning and is having a great time making new friends.  Plus, Lucy and I have been having fun exploring the community education center during his class.  We can't be in the gym with him because Lucy seems to think she is a 6 year old and tries at every chance to make a break for it so she can join in on the action.

    Christmas will be here before we know it.  We can't wait!