Obviously I am supremely behind, so I'm packing our holidays into one fun-filled, mega-summarized post.


Since Halloween was approximately a week before I had a baby, I was less than inspired when it came to costumes. Luckily for us, we have a box full of costumes from years past and we were able to find something that worked for everyone. Coincidentally, they just happened to be the same costumes the boys wore last year.

If you'll recall, Matthew was 7 months old on Halloween last year, so we were pretty impressed that the Rex costume fit him again this year. Thanks to Grandma for making it on the big side!
One of the most exciting things about Halloween this year was Kyle's first Halloween parade at school. I hauled my pregnant self and the two littles down to the school and found us a spot at what was pretty much the back of the crowd of parents. Add that to the fact that the kids were hauling buns around the gym and you can understand why the only pictures I got of Kyle were blurry cell phone pictures.
He looks disillusioned with the whole thing, but I promise he was excited.
 We headed to Sandy again to trick-or-treat with Cole's brother and his family. The boys tuckered out after only a few streets, but they still managed to make a pretty big haul. Incidentally, I still have close to half of their Halloween candy in the cupboard above our oven--we're not huge candy eaters at our house, apparently.


Thanksgiving was really quiet this year. It was our year to be with Cole's family, but Cole's brothers made alternate plans this year so it ended up being us and Cole's parents. We had a really nice meal with LOTS of food! I made 4 pies (yes, even though there were only 4 adults--we had to have variety!) and some pretty killer rolls (this is now my go-to roll recipe, in case you're wondering).


Christmas started on Saturday, Dec. 21. We had Cole's family's Christmas party. As per tradition, we decorated gingerbread houses.

We also had our family gift exchange. The kids were all super excited to open their present from one of their cousins.

Each of us got a really nice gift, but I think Cole got the best one of all. His brother, who is living in PA going to medical school, sent a poster for Cole's office. At first, we were a little baffled--it seemed like a really random gift. Then, when Cole texted him to say thank you, we found out it was an image of Pelotas, Brazil, the area where Cole spent a significant part of his mission.
The poster hanging in Cole's office
We had Christmas Eve dinner at our house with my family. Thanks to the perks of working at a hotel, Cole was able to set us up with banquet tables, chairs, linens, and flatware. Add in Stephanie's and my Christmas china from our mom and we had a beautifully set table.
Our Christmas table, featuring the newlyweds
After dinner we exchanged gifts. I made what is quite possibly my greatest crafting achievement ever (details in a later post) for my each of my siblings and my parents. We talked and laughed and had a fantastic time.
After everyone left we set cookies out for Santa (Holiday Oreos, because Mama wasn't on top of things and didn't get cookies made) and put the boys to bed. Kyle asked us if 4:30 was too early to get up and open presents, and Cole emphatically told him it was. The funny thing is, Kyle doesn't have a watch or alarm so he would have had no way of knowing when 4:30 was.
The kids woke up around 7:30 and we headed downstairs to open presents. After dumping out the contents of their stockings and unwrapping all of their gifts under the tree, Cole sent them on a hunt for their "big" gift from Santa: a bunch of superhero costumes.
(Lately, they've been really into superheroes and they run around the house pretending to be Iron Man or Spiderman, so Santa decided they needed some costumes to facilitate their huge imaginations.)
They spent all day getting in and out of the various get-ups, and I realized maybe Santa wasn't so inspired because that is what all of my days will consist of from here on out--helping them in and out of costumes.

I made a yummy breakfast casserole and cake batter cinnamon rolls for breakfast, which we devoured. We headed south to Payson to my grandma's house for Christmas afternoon, where we ate MORE food and opened more presents. That evening, Cole took Kyle and Lucas to see Frozen while I went with my parents and the two littles to see Stephanie and Matt's new home and watch them open their wedding gifts.

Oh, and funny (and TMI) story about Hallie on Christmas Day. She had always been on somewhat of a "#2 schedule", if you catch my drift. She would poop on two consecutive days, then go 6-7 days without having a messy diaper. So, she had done her business on Dec. 23 & 24 so I figured we were good for the week and didn't pack any extra clothes for our trip to Grandma's. Well, the little stinker decided to play a mean trick and had a major blow-out just as we were getting ready to leave. And, since it was Christmas Day and there were few businesses open we couldn't just run out and get her a new outfit. We ended up getting her a 6 mo. size t-shirt from Walgreens and wrapping her up in her blanket. At least it was a Christmas shirt so she still looked festive.

The holidays this year were a big, exhausting, exciting blur. Maybe it had something to do with having a new baby in the midst of the season. However, we had a wonderful couple of months full of family, friends, and love, and we're extremely grateful for all of the many ways we are blessed.

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