Thursday, January 5, 2012

Bring it on, 2012!

Happy New Year! I'll save you the trouble of hearing, "I can't believe 2011 is already over" and just get on with it. We had some great holiday times. And...I can't believe they're over!  (Yikes, I just said it again.)

Somehow, we managed to get Christmas taken care of even if we did it all by ourselves--with a two and a half year old and a newborn. There were a few chaotic moments, but thanks to online shopping, baby carriers, and understanding spouses, we got the job done.  

Shopping at the mall 3 days before Christmas - crazy but driven!

Gabe's 1st Christmas (Eve)
[gluten-free] Fettuccine Alfredo - a new Christmas Eve tradition?

Mia got a massive dollhouse from Santa.  Greg & I ordered a dollhouse off the internet the week before Christmas for a better deal than we found on Craigslist for used dollhouses and with free shipping before the holiday, but when it arrived we were flabbergasted at its size.

We almost wondered if it should have been returned for something smaller or if we should have saved it, but it was our "BIG" gift (literally) so we wanted to try it out. We figured if it didn't work, maybe she'd forget about it and we could swap it out.  Fortunately, it found a home (no pun intended) in Mia's room.

If it fits, it [doesn't get shipped back]!
We technically celebrated Christmas on Christmas Eve since Sundays are already so chaotic with church services but we still stayed in the holiday spirit throughout the weekend. It was like one big long celebration.

Gabe & Mia on Christmas Day

Greg had the whole week and we all enjoyed having him around -- Mia especially.  We had our actual Christmas dinner on Monday. There were just too many presents to open (all our out of town family sent their presents in the mail so we had an opening fest nearly all day Saturday), too much going on Sunday, so pushed that back to Monday night.

We had beef tenderloin steaks, Pioneer Woman's Perfect Potatoes Au Gratin, Ginger-glazed carrots, and Flourless Chocolate Cake for dessert.  It was a similar menu to last year but scaled down just a tad because it was just the four of us.

Making the dinner, however, was a bit of a mess.  I started on the potatoes first and put them in the oven at a toasty 400°F.  Unfortunately, as soon as the dish was put in the oven, even though it was covered by foil, some of the cheesy cream mixture spilled over the side onto the bottom of the oven floor.  A few minutes later, all the smoke alarms in the house went off because the spill was smoking the oven.  And the alarms continued for the next couple of hours as I still had almost every other entree item to cook in the oven (minus the steaks).  Boo!!  It woke Mia up, but Gabe slept through the whole thing. We had to air out the house, which meant opening up all the doors and letting our neighbors know how awesome I am at using the oven.  OOPS. #fail

New Year's Eve we celebrated with family friends.  We technically didn't ring in the new year at midnight; all of us with kids left the party by 8 or 8:30, and all of us were in bed by 10:45 or earlier.  I'm not so much interested in staying up late anymore these days...

Now that the holidays are over it's back to getting into some kind of routine and keeping things moving.  
I sincerely hope I can keep the blog updated more regularly--at least better than I did the last couple months of 2011. And I DO have the birth story part II written and ready to post, if I can get myself to push the "Publish" button.  Once it's out there, it's out there.  

Gabe's been a dream baby though as far as all things baby go.  Some of the things that are different about him are just temperament-related; he's pretty chill. And some of the other things are purposeful parenting, or just being more chillaxed about everything in general.  He's still pretty go-with-the-flow so I intend to enjoy that as long as it lasts although before I know it, he'll probably be requiring a bit more structure in his schedule. He may already feel some structure though since Mia has a schedule of her own.  We'll see what happens.  

Coming up soon: cloth diapers on a newborn, the birth story, and maybe some new meal plans?  That's a wrap for now!

LOVE this picture...

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