We survived the plane ride there and back, plus 6 full days away from home. More pictures to come.
Yesterday Greta and I finally made our gingerbread house. I bought a kit from Whole Foods and didn’t read the directions before buying it. It turns out you have to make the actual panels, which took more work than I was hoping for. But eventually it did get done.
Greta loves the fake smile with squinty eyes these days.
I moved it to the dining room table after it was done and then Greta sat there picking candy off it (since she apparently hadn’t eaten enough during decorating). It is now moved to a higher location where she can’t easily get to it (oh she can still get to it, if she moves a chair and then stands on the chair).
We started the Christmas gift exchange this weekend. Matt’s parents came down to visit on Saturday morning after swimming lessons. They brought the girls’ presents and we let them open them. We also gave our gifts to Matt’s parents and sent our gifts to all the nieces and nephews home with them. The girls got tons of new fun stuff.
The girls got some playtime with Grammy and Pop-pop before they left to go home.
On Sunday we wanted to give the girls most of their Christmas gifts, since we will be traveling for Christmas itself. We opted for Sunday, since Matt would be home to see them open and play with the new things, plus that gives them a few days to play with things before we leave them behind.
Lastly, my parents sent one of Greta’s gifts here, so we did a little Skype gift presentation.
And now we brace for the final rounds of gift exchanging. We clearly need to clean out some of the toys to make room for all the new stuff. We still have more gifts from my parents, aunts, uncles, and Santa. Phew!
1. Yesterday morning we took the train to NYC. Overall it was a great trip! The girls were fascinated by the train.
2. First stop we made was Macy’s, just about a block from the train station. We headed right up to Santaland to see what that was. There was no line so we headed in. You weave around and around through a nicely decorated area and eventually get to Santa. Greta of course would not sit with Santa, but did tell him what she wanted (more people for her dollhouse). (They had multiple Santas hidden away at the end. They carefully led each family to their own little booth, brillant!)
3. Our friends who live near us, met us in the city to spend the day as well and we met up with them after seeing Santa. We took the subway next!
4. We stopped at Rockefeller Center to see the ice skaters and the big Christmas tree.
5. Next, we headed to St. Patricks for a peek and a prayer. Greta got to light a candle, which is her favorite thing to do at churches.
6. Eloise fell asleep somewhere along the way, I think while we were in the subway and slept for quite a long while. We walked to Columbus Circle to meet my good friend from high school for lunch. (And I’m terrible and didn’t take any pictures, soon we will be getting a point and shoot camera so that it is easier to take pictures when we are out and about and have our hands nearly full.)
7. We went to Central Park to let the big girls get some energy out.
8. Then we headed to FAO Schwartz to look around. We bought two books and headed back to the subway and then train. We had a great time and definitely will be making another trip, probably in the spring. We definitely got a lot less done with two kids than we did pre-kids. Greta spent most of the day looking up at the buildings. She didn’t much care for the number of people that were everywhere. Eloise was mostly content, especially since we didn’t let her down to crawl anywhere all day. Next time we go she will be walking, so she will at least get to play in the park a little bit.
Last weekend a local town had an Olde Time Christmas parade. We went after we got our Christmas tree and our friends came along. Here are a few pictures from the parade. Most notable is Greta’s pictures with Pooh and Tigger. Recently Greta has become pretty obsessed about Pooh and company. She didn’t want her picture with Elmo, SpongeBob, or any of the other characters, but she wanted a picture with Pooh and Tigger. She wouldn’t pose by herself, but did want to with Daddy.
Yesterday we attempted to see Santa. He was schedule to be at this old mansion in New Jersey, but the schedule changed and he wasn’t there. So we just walked around and looked at some of the decorations and took some pictures with our friends.
As of right now we don’t have too much else planned as far as Christmas activities. We are expecting Matt’s parents next weekend, and sometime between now and the 24th we will exchange our gifts with each other. I’m sure there will be more pictures coming soon.
Last night as Matt was taking some some awful Christmas lights (one lonely blue strand thrown haphazardly on a bush) our neighbors came by and told us about the Santa parade that comes through the neighborhood. Although it was getting close to bedtime and Greta was EXHAUSTED, we got the kids dressed in warm clothes and waited on the porch for a little while.
After about an hour we came inside (Eloise and I had been in and out all night). Greta was fading fast and actually fell asleep while waiting.
Soon Santa was on his way. Matt had to shake Greta awake and squeeze her cheeks to get her to open her eyes. Greta was excited to see Santa drive by our house.
Seriously how cool is that? We continue to be amazed by this place and more and more we think this is truly Americana.