Saturday, December 5, 2015

Christmas In Color, Kearns Utah

This was such a fun night! I am convinced that everything is more fun with kids. Okay, that's not true - there are a lot of things I would rather do alone, like going to the bathroom, showering, or grocery shopping, but looking at Christmas lights is definitely not one of those things. We had been seeing the Christmas in Color Drive Thru Light Display in Kearns all over the news and social media and decided we should probably check it out for ourselves. Worth it? Totally! It was so cool, not like any other light display I had ever been to before, and just so fun for the kids too (we took my two neices as well).

We went on a Saturday (at 9pm), I am convinced that was the busiest time for us to choose but it wasn't a bad wait. Maybe 10 minutes to get inside the actual light display and it took us 30 minutes to drive the 1 mile long light display (but it didn't seem like it). When we left, there was no line to get in, drastic difference from 30 minutes prior.

These are some 15 second clips of the display (so much fun to listen to the girls be so excited!):

I don't think the photos or the videos can do it justice.

Long videos:

I think we will go back one more time just so that we can hear Madison be excited all over again. It was a blast and such a fun night out!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

New Clay Christmas Ornaments!

Hurray! We decorated our Christmas tree! It has been up for about a month, but we did officially wait until after Thanksgiving to decorate. I really didn't mind it being up and not decorated, I think that we must need more plants in our house because I really liked having a tree in the living room.
We usually get a permit and go with my family to cut down a Christmas tree but I was not going to travel anywhere without cell service being so close to our due date. So we got a fake tree this year, it's different but I really like it still.
Madison has had lots of fun decorating the tree this year, and as soon as all the ornaments were up - there were some taken down just so she could hang them up again. It's totally worth it because after every ornament she hangs she yells, "I did it!!!!" I don't think the tree has seen an hour of daylight without getting a makeover.
Some of our favorite ornaments that we have on our tree:
For 30 years of my life my Grandpa and Grandma had a tree downstairs and a tree upstairs. Their tree upstairs was covered in fake snow that we liked to peel off when we were younger because it felt cool. It was beautiful and covered in all of these miniature teddy bears. Last year they talked about these bears and announced that every time they received a new grandchild, they added a new bear. I never knew that's what the bears represented but I love it! They are only going to have one tree from now on so they gave each of us the bear that had our name written on the tag. Imagine all the love, and all the grandkids, that fill their lives if they were able to have a tree covered in bears to represent each one!
Both of these ornaments are for our first Christmas as a married couple. We do actually have one other, but I am not sure where it is at the moment... This is why I get multiples of things, in case one gets lost or broken ;).
This snowman is one of our homemade ornaments from last year. We actually made two of them as well just in case one breaks ;). Each part of the snowman's body is made from one of our thumbprints.
We also made ornaments out of Madi's hands and feet. I think they are her favorite ornaments this year. I asked her to put her hand and foot up to each one, just to see how much they have grown and now that's all she wants to do is hold them and measure herself against the ornaments.
Baby's First Christmas Ornament. I love the one with her photo in it. I think it's only going to get better and better to see that picture with each passing year. I already love it so much.
We have some other ornaments like "Our First House" ornament and some different ones from vacations we have been on, but these are definitely the most special ones to us. Here are the ornaments we made this year... Madison rocked at making her hand and feet ornaments, but then she wanted to play in the clay like play dough, and since that wasn't an option... she wasn't too excited to just put a thumbprint in the rest. Oh the two's. Love this age!
This year we did her cute hands and feet again. I know one day they are going to be too big to hang on the tree. I don't know what I will do when that day comes!
We made these cute gingerbread girls and an ornament using her thumbprints to create a heart.
And we made two ornaments with our family thumbprints (which we may have to make again if a particular child makes her entrance into the world before Christmas). A candy cane and then this one (pictured above). I didn't have any energy to be creative at this point. Mike said, "You're ready to be done aren't you?" I really was. Getting 8 thumbprints from a 2 year old is pretty dang hard when they aren't allowed to play with the clay like plaudough! I still love the ornaments though. What great memories we will always have of this Christmas!
We really love all the special ornaments on our tree this year. I told Mike one day that's all we will be able to fit on the tree is all of our special ornaments. I don't think he minds that one bit!

Grand America Hotel Christmas Windows, Salt Lake City

This weekend we were able to go up to Salt Lake and do one of our most favorite Christmas activities - see the Christmas Window display at the Grand America hotel. It is so much fun each and every year to see the beautiful displays that they come up with. 
The theme this year was Christmas songs. So as you went to each window you would figure out what Christmas song it represented and then write it down on the card they gave you.
(The last window was Silver Bells - but Mike got a little eager and filled them out before we had seen them all, lol.)
All of the windows with moving objects were Madison's favorite. She would always stay at them as long as possible. This one had a ice skating bird that twirled in circles: 
 Just taking the whole activity pretty seriously and making sure she wrote in her best handwriting ;).
She loved watching the Grinch come down from the chimney. I think we are going to have to introduce her to the movie soon.
And of course, she still loves Santa!
Looking at these photos, I can see now why people say she looks just like her mom!
 <3 <3 <3 Love these people <3 <3 <3
 Looking at herself in the big ornaments.
 The trees are always so pretty!
The famous Grand America Gingerbread House.
This gingerbread house is based on the design of an old Wyoming homesteader cabin that was found at a ranch owned by [Grand America].
It is made of:
1300 pounds of Flour
300 pounds of Sugar
1500 Eggs
150 quarts of Molasses
800 pounds of Powdered Sugar
1000 Gumballs
300 Candy Canes
40 pounds of rice Krispy Treats
200 pounds of Isomalt
100 pounds of Chocolate
And she really wanted to go inside.
Once you fill out your card they give you a cookie, but Madison wouldn't eat the ones they handed out so we went to their little gift shop/sweet shop La Bonne Vie and got some macarons. She sure loved them! I think Coconut was the favorite for each of us!
It was a wonderful afternoon, especially since the weather was so rotten outside. I love that fun activities like this are within driving distance for us! I hope she grows up loving the traditions as much as we do <3!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas in SLC; Temple Square, City Creek and Grand America Holiday Window Stroll

Mike has been so excited to take Madison to see the lights at Temple Square this Christmas. We decided to make an evening of it and got a hotel night so we could enjoy our time in Salt Lake, even though it's not too far from our house.

We had dinner at City Creek, which of course, was busier than any other time I have visited in the past. It was lame but convenient since temple square was just right across the street. Madison seemed to enjoy it, but let's be honest, she loves it anytime we go on walks.

(Just look at those cute legs in those adorable fur boots!)

City Creek was decked out for the holidays and it looked amazing as well! So we walked around and enjoyed their Christmas lights and decor.

Our final stop for the night was at the Grand America Hotel. We love that place. We didn't do the Holiday Window Stroll last year since we weren't taking Madison in public, but she sure loved it this year. I was excited to see the Gingerbread house, this year it was beyond what I expected. It was HUGE! I loved the detail of the house. Not only the outside, but the inside too.

 the Gingerbread House:
148 Quarts of Molasses
1300 pounds of Flour
2000 Eggs
300 pounds of Sugar
40 pounds of Rice Crispies
2000 Gumballs
88 pounds of White Chocolate
44 pounds of Pastillage
900 pounds of Royal Icing
12 Pastry Chefs Working Every Day
1440 Hours of Labor

All that and Madison's favorite part was the reindeer (lol):

Started in the stroller...

Didn't like the stroller because she couldn't fully enjoy the windows without touching them.
She ran up to each window and just pushed her face against it to get a close look at all the things inside. It was fun and I am glad that after a night in the stroller she got to run around for a bit in the hotel hallways. (She also did have super cute boots on but after pulling them off a dozen times I gave up and just let her keep them off. Then she pulls her socks off too. I think she is going to end up a flip-flop girl one day.)

Anyway, the theme this year was the ABC's so every window depicted Christmas with a letter from the alphabet.

Definitely a worth-while trip! We sure love Christmas and creating family traditions <3.