Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Holiday Traditions

Happy Christmas week everyone! We have been having a ton of fun getting geared up for all the special events happening this week. December is always a blast with fun parties, pretty decorations, and celebrating some of our favorite traditions.

Gingerbread Houses
Each year we've done a gingerbread house. Some years we do this with friends and others we do it solo. This year we were solo, and I was so excited to find this gingerbread house kit that was already put together (hallelujah!). 

The Cutes were so excited to put it together and took their job pretty seriously decorating it. 

And perhaps took the job of taste testing pretty seriously too. 

They stayed on task for about an hour making it "just right". 
I think they nailed it. 

Checking out Holiday Lights
Another one of our favorite traditions is visiting holiday lights. The last few years we have visited the Lights of Life, but this year we opted to change it up a bit and doing one of our milkshake memories adventures and driving around to find our own lights. 

Most people opt to do this with hot cocoa, but it has been 75 degrees here lately so milkshakes were more than acceptable (when aren't milkshakes acceptable???)

We saw tons of gorgeous lights in our area, but we loved how some people opted to still decorate for other holidays and join in on the fun. We loved this house with all of their Hanukah decorations. That bear was HUGE! 

And some were flat out bizarre...
But The Cutes loved those even more because it was a little different than the rest of the homes we were seeing. Cute loved this giant spider web (???) one. 

Visiting Santa
Last year we opted to do the Dreamworks' Adventure to Santa at our local mall for our Santa visit. When I heard they were bringing it back this year I scheduled us for a visit. The Cutes have been watching Shrek the Halls a lot this month so I knew they would both enjoy it this year. 

We had a 6:30p.m. appointment so the house was lit up and decorated for evening. It was so pretty! It also had a slightly different theme than last year, which was fun for those returning like us. 

Shrek and Donkey, were a huge hit of course, and everywhere you turned they were popping out to say hi!

We didn't have to wait in line one bit, and walked right over to meet the whole Shrek family. 
Don't let Little Cute's face fool you. She is ecstatic, and only giving a blank face because she doesn't get why she can't hold Baby Shrek and carry her around. 

Not pictured is Mr. Cute, who felt that his talents were best suited for behind the camera as official "smile maker". Well played Mr. Cute. Well played. 

Several things were the same as last year, and some they had changed up just a bit. The kids were able to go through training for their official sleigh pilots license, ride on the sleigh to the North Pole, and decorate and create a virtual gingerbread man that you can later turn into an ornament if you like. 

When you finally reach the big guy, everything is quiet calm and private. We love how much time this Santa takes with everyone. He took the time to read each of their lists and then talk to each child. It was fun listening to Cute and Santa have a conversation, even just about everyday life. He was so sweet. 

Little Cute we realized was very nervous about Santa, and when he asked for her list she ran up, threw her list at him, exclaimed "Chuck E Cheese", and ran back to us. 

(Yes Chuckee is still a huge hit apparently.)

We felt bad she was so scared...but not bad enough to miss out on our Santa photo op apparently...

Santa might not be able to hear out of his left ear any longer, but at least we have a new photo to add to our collection. 

Parents of the year contenders right here. 

Pink Pig
If you are from Atlanta, you know what a huge hit the Pink Pig is here. It's a fun tradition we do with CB and some friends each year, and I just love it! I know Carrie Beth plans on sharing a little bit of about this year's visit tomorrow, but it was just as fun and quite entertaining. I just know her recap of this year's events will be one you won't want to miss. 

If you follow us on Instagram, you probably saw this fun little preview. 
Cute clearly is not one to hide his emotions. 

The rest of this week we plan on doing a lot of last minute wrapping, last minute holiday movie watching, and a whole lot of cookie taste testing making. It is so nice to have so many fun traditions to share with our growing little family. I hope some of these are memories that will last with them throughout their lives.

Or at least get to experience the ear piercing screams of their own Santa terrified toddler one day...

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions?

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