Earlier in the month we met our good friend Warren downtown to check out the new holidazzle village. Ethnie was spending the afternoon with a friend so we just had Emmett with us. It was great weather to be outside.
^^ Emmett was so excited to ride the light rail! it was his first time and he had a permasmile the entire ride. as soon as we got off he wanted to get back on. :)
^^ Emmett loves his buddy Warren!
^^ checking out the reindeer.
^^ photo on one of the "old" holidazzle parade floats. personally, i loved the parade and will really miss it!
We headed up to my dad's the weekend before Christmas for the annual family gathering. It was so nice to see and catch up with everyone! There wasn't much snow, but the kids had a blast with grandma and grandpa.
^^ my sweet boy.
time to open gifts from grandma and grandpa!
^^ grandpa reading the book Everyone Poops before bed ;)
^^ cuddling my cousin Rob's baby, little Navy! can't get enough of him.
my dad's family pooled together to get Emmett a very special Christmas gift. a gift certificate to a website that specializes in autism resources, like learning games, books, sensory toys, and other things we can use at home. we are so grateful. THANK YOU family!
^^ grandma snuggles are best. :)
smokey comes to visit.
We had the fun opportunity to take care of Smokey the kitten for four days before Christmas. It was our first time watching a cat and we loved it! Smokey is seven months old and is a very sweet girl. We loved cuddling her and watching her play! Thanks for letting us take care of her, Jackie!
watching the kids play
smokey was very interested in Emmett during his bath. she sat in the bathroom watching him.
^^ pampered kitty :)
We were at home on Christmas Eve. We opened gifts from each other in the morning, then got ready to host Matt's family for dinner. We had four different kinds of fondue. It was delicious and everything went really well. Unfortunately, I didn't get many photos of the evening. But we all had a really nice time!
^^ Ethnie loves helping Emmett open his gifts.
^^ new game!
^^ more Lego friends. what Ethnie really wanted for Christmas!
^^ my brother sent Ethnie a charm bracelet for Christmas and she loves it. :)
Christmas morning was really special. Santa definitely came and left presents for the kids. I love it when they come wake us up with their messy hair and raspy voices telling us Santa was here. Despite the challenging year we've had, we have felt very blessed and watched over. We have had what we need, which is all that matters. The Spirit of Christmas has filled our home and kept us focused on the true meaning of Christmas.
^^ Emmett loves his new Nemo sensory toy.
^^ a new Thomas the train - what Emmett asked Santa for.
^^ Ethnie got what she asked for and more.
After cleaning up and packing, we headed back up north to spend Christmas day with my mom and Rick. It was so busy! We had to gather up Smokey and take her home first. Poor kitty, she HATED her cardboard carrier so much, she tried busting her head through one of the holes! I felt so bad making her stay in there. She was so stressed out!
^^ so sad, but can't help but laugh every time I see this photo!
opening gifts from Nana and Papa. these kids are so lucky.
We stayed over and took the kids to a hotel pool the next day. Nana had to work so we burned some time while she was away. Wow, it felt great to sit in some warm, humid air for a while!
^^ one of Emmett's favorite places to be is in the water. we may have another big swimmer in the family. :)
^^ the other big swimmer
Later on, Emmett went outside to help papa bring in some wood. He was a pretty good helper.
playing with Elsa
good job, bud!
getting a ride with papa
Hope you are all staying warm! Happy New Year!