The short version: happy, busy, crazy, fun, exciting, lots and lots of coughing and lots and lots of snott.
*sigh* at least it wasn't the stomach flu like last year. But both boys have nasty coughs, and icky noses... seth has crackly lungs so he is getting two neb treatments a day, and I have the runny nose and cough from hell. It's AWESOME. I guess I am thankful that the worst of it hit yesterday and today rather than over the holiday itself.
We drove up to Stanwood on Saturday to visit Aaron's Grandma Joyce and Aunt Angie and Uncle Dick. The boys got some awesome gifts... Seth got a ride on toy (that also converts to a stand up toy) and a dash board toy that has both english/spanish settings and makes all sorts of cool car sounds. Nolan got some neat cars that light up and look like sparks, and a sit and spin... it is a real kick to see him sit on it, and try to get it going, he hasn't quite figured it out, but thinks he is hot stuff anyway!
On Sunday, I got up a bit late (the boys have been sleeping in past their usual 6am wakeup... ) I was to meet Tatum for coffee at 8am at Starbucks and it was 7:40; ACK! I got up superfast, threw my hair in a ponytail and slapped some makeup on and grabbed the kids' sippies of milk before I got them up. I decided to bring them with me to coffee so Aaron could sleep in a bit, and rushed around like a crazy person getting them dressed and ready. Of course, they both gifted me with big DISGUSTING diapers, so that took some time. We made it to Starbucks by 8:25... not too shabby, considering it's about 15 mins away anyway and I had the late start. The boys got donuts and I got a frappucino and gingerbread. We had a nice visit w/ Tatum, and after we left I decided to stop at Target and grab a few last minute supplies we would need for baking. I then stopped at Fred Meyer and we grabbed a few hot wheels (bribery!) and some other miscellaneous stuff and then went home. I was ... in a word, EXHAUSTED. (I think that was the onset of the cold) and we fed the kids lunch and I ran up to rite aid to buy some baby dolls (more on that in a bit)... when I came back, we put the kids down to lunch and I took a nap on the couch. We spent the afternoon cooking (yams, pies and goodies!) and deep cleaning the bathrooms and wrapping the last of the gifts.
Oh, and Santa gave the boys their big gift that morning. We knew that we didn't want to lug it over to my mom's to be opened on Christmas morning, so we gave it to them early... it was a hit! We got them the Step 2 Lifestyle Custom Kitchen. Nolan went right to work pretending to cook and feeding us his creations. Seth was happy as a clam to pace the living room carrying the kitchen phone, a lid to a pan and a plastic fork.
Anyhoo, we started out the holiday festivities by me getting the baking bug... seems to happen at the last minute every year. I spent a lot of time at the end of last week making fudge and oreo truffles, sugar cookies, peanut blossoms and no bake cookies.
I handed several goodie plates out to our neighbors, and gave some out to friends and family too. I did have a lot of fun doing it... at the same time Aaron and I were on a bit of a mission. We had to get the house in tip top shape for Christmas eve, as everyone was set to come to our house for the big day. We were cleaning machines, it was awesome to throw out so much stuff and have the house so clean and pretty. It was my first time making a big Turkey dinner for a family event... I have only made a turkey dinner once before and it was a few years ago and only for us... I was nervous! I made a turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, yams w/ marshmallows, green bean casserole and rolls. Oh and pumpkin pie too. Everyone raved about the dinner... yay! I discovered that I not only didn't mind doing a big holiday dinner like that, but it was nice to have it at our house so I could keep the boys on some sort of schedule. It wasn't their normal schedule, but we were at home so it wasn't too bad at all.
Seth of course, acted like everyone was going to skin him alive when they first came over... Nolan, following 'monkey see-monkey do' protocol decided that he was in danger too, and thus Aaron spent a good while with both boys feverishly climbing all over him to escape the affections of their aunts, uncles and cousins. Luckily they eventually calmed down, and seth even seemed to enjoy the attention after a while. After dinner we opened presents... Nolan received some puzzles from Uncle dan and some clothes and a cool alphabet toy from his Maya. (Aaron's mom)... Seth got a piano and some clothes from Maya and a train toy from his Uncle Dan... and then both boys got a set of food and dishes for their new kitchen from Uncle Dan. I put the boys down for a late nap at 5pm. (Seth had already had a nap that morning, but was in need of a second one)... we had my family gathering of my dad's side that evening at 8pm and I knew that they wouldn't do well unless they napped. So down they went and I woke them at 7... and they did really well!
I think it helped that there were lots of kids there, and that they'd already been around a lot of people they weren't too sure of (lol!) earlier in the day... they adapted fairly quickly and spent the evening having a ball. When we got back to my parent's house they got to open their new jammies from Aaron and I and then into bed they went. Aaron and I spent the next half hour or so blowing up (by our own lungs) the air mattress we brought to sleep on. As luck would have it, we woke up about an hour after we fell asleep and the damn thing had deflated just enough to be massively uncomfortable. Fun stuff. Oh and I was also coming down with the crud by this point.
Seth woke up on and off all night crying ... presumably because he wasn't in his own bed, and Aaron and I both tossed and turned and barely slept a wink that night. Next year we will spring for the more expensive blow up bed, because it will be worth it.
Christmas morning started out with a bang, we cleaned up the bedding and stuff from the living room and helped the boys open their stockings. Then the ripping and tearing began... Nolan was totally into it, it was so funny. They got so much stuff... From Santa they got their kitchen and and stocking stuffers... then Santa also brought them each a set of hotwheels and some hardback books - curious george for Seth and Thomas the Train for Nolan. Nolan and Seth gave each other some hard back books (all about different kinds of vehicles) and coloring books. From Mama and Daddy they got baby dolls, Nolan got a magna doodle, Seth got a shake and go car and then they both got a bunch of little stuff from Aaron and I that Santa couldn't fit in their stockings.
From Nana and Papa they each got a ride on toy... Nolan got a trike (which he is OBSESSED WITH!) and Seth got a little rocket rider, they also got more play food and dishes, Nolan got a big car setup that folds up to look like a semi truck and seth got a magnetic fridge farm set. Auntie Lori and Uncle Seth got Nolan a tonka garbage truck... this thing is seriously cool... Nolan saw it at costco and was obsessed with it... every time we'd go to costco after that he'd talk about it. He's been playing with it nonstop! And sethy got some more food and accessories from the kitchen... some really cool ones, ice cream sundaes, cookies... the cookies look so real that the boys were kind of upset when they tried to bite into them, lol. Auntie Karen and Uncle Gary got them clothes and then got Nolan a train set and Seth an Elmo chair... they were BEYOND spoiled this year! There was probably even a few gifts I forgot about... I was hoping that writing everything down here would help me remember, but... not so much.
So to wrap up, here are some more pictures...
playing cars w/ daddy on christmas eve
Even big boys like hotwheels
Seth and Lucas arrive at Aunt Carrie's... Lucas was not thrilled to say the least, lol
He was so grinny that night
me and the boys at my aunt's house on Christmas eve... wtf is up w/ my crazy eyes?
He was so happy to open presents and be around all the kids
Playing peek a boo w/ cousin dawn
cousins playing on Christmas morning
Uncle Aaron and Lucas
"I paying!" Nolan was dying to play Scene it w/ us