Goodbye 2013

Happy Holidays and goodbye 2013.  Here is a look at the Christmas card I designed this year.  I took an annual report/info-graphic approach and listed out our family stats.  It's fun to see our year this way. I noticed I fell behind on blog posting this year.  Not really sure why... maybe it was all of those baseball games? In 2013 I posted just over 100 times and in 2012 I had an all-time high record of 287. In 2011 I posted 238 times. Whoa. That's a lot of posting - thanks for sticking with me over the years.  I am happy to have this online journal and it'll be nice for the kids to go through one day.

So on this last day of of 2013 (my last post for 2013) I wish you all a Happy New year and lots of love,  happiness, luck and health for 2014. 

North Pole express

On Friday we took a train ride on the North Pole Express. We met a few nice elves, Mrs. Claus and even had a visit from Santa.

While heading to the North Pole we enjoyed Hot cocoa ("hot coke" as Nic calls it), famous chocolate chip cookies and caroling. Santa faces us all bells. It was a festive, memorable and fun night.

Gingerbread men

Having some fun last week building gingerbread houses. Surprisingly easy this year, nothing fell apart. Nic has been begging for weeks to put one together. He was thrilled!

Hohoholiday party

We had an immediate family Chrismas party last night at Geoff and Ky's house. We missed celebrating with Beau, Nichole & kids and Shawn, Lisa and kids. The timing just didn't work out this year for everyone to be together.  We made due and the kids had a blast all the same. It was a nice surprise to see Aunt Julie, Uncle Mike & Karen and Ky's parents Pam and Doug. We sure had fun.

Like a dummy I didn't get a big group picture. Ug, I wish I had.

There was excellent food & desserts, fun games, white elephant, and a visit from Santa. 

Nicholas was so thrilled to see Santa. His eyes lit up the second he saw him and he proceeded to tell Santa all about his elf. Santa remembered sending an elf to Nicholas and the dialogue they had about "elfie" was super cute. Nicholas asked for a flashlight friend, and surprise, he magically recieved one. A Christmas miracle! The older boys were happy to see Santa too. They both enjoyed sitting on his lap and listing their Christmas wishes. Look how big Andrew is?! Right now he is almost 5'8" (he has grown 3 inches in the last year). The bigs boys recieved Legos and were happy. Ben spent the rest of his evening putting his set together.

Geoff & Ky... Thanks for hosting such a fun party!

Catching up with 2012

I meant to post a few of these photos and thoughts before the end of 2012.  Here's a few little missing bits from our December.

1. I finally mastered the perfect caramel.  I purchased a candy thermometer, and boy did it help.  These puppies were not too soft nor too hard.  I made 5 batches of caramels this winter.

2. Santa... Nicholas saw Santa three times.  Here he is at Chris' work.

3. Christmas day. YEAH.We took no photos. How can that be? Here are basically the only two.