Thanksgiving is such a special holiday for me... I think because it is the start of the holiday season, and thus, the start of some fun family traditions. We started a few new things with Andrew this year, and I am getting super excited for Christmas!
We got up this morning and drove to my grandma's. My mom and Jim were there, along with my aunt, uncles and cousins. The second we walked in the door Kolton had Andrew acting silly! Andrew imitated everything the kids did!
Andrew just loves his cousins, and they had so much fun together.
Andrew with Kolton, Kelsie and Kendra
It has always been a tradition that my grandma give an ornament to each grandchild every Thanksgiving. We always look forward to seeing what our ornament for the year will be!
Here they are under the tree!
Andrew loved his special Thomas ornament. It had James and Percy, too! His 3 favorite engines.
We had a delicious feast! My aunt made a yummy turkey and all the trimmings. She also makes the best pies- there were 5 of them in all!
Craig gets the honor of carving the turkey!
Andrew and I enjoying ice cream oreo pie! (There was also pumpkin and apple!) We got out each pie one by one, and left some time in between so we could sample all three! We were so stuffed!
Another tradition we started this year with the kids is doing a Christmas craft. My mom and I brought along the items to make a Santa face. The kids had so much fun being creative, and my grandma enjoyed sitting at the table with us. She loves crafting and had a huge basket of extra supplies for us to go through!
Andrew enjoyed the craft too. His teacher at school says that art time is his favorite thing. They rotate through stations and he always wants to do the art station twice!
My aunt and uncle bought a game for the kids to open and Andrew wanted in on it! He mostly just wanted to mess it up! Ha!
Look at that face! You can just tell he's thinking about being naughty!
After a wonderful day with our family, we loaded up and headed back home (luckily we only live 40 minutes away!) Our little family had some special new traditions to start this year.
I finished putting up the last of my Christmas decorations, and was so excited to get out our family's advent calendar. I love it because each square has a pocket. This year I am planning to write out something fun for us to do each day together and put them in the pockets. So every day we'll see what's inside and we'll do the activity. I plan to write things like...drive around and look at Christmas lights, bake Christmas cookies, drink hot chocolate, read a Christmas book or watch a Christmas movie or do a craft. I am so excited for someday when Andrew can help me make up the activities to do!
My family has always had the tradition of going to a Christmas movie on Thanksgiving, or the day after. We decided to continue this with Andrew by watching one at home. We cuddled up in our jammies and watched The Polar Express together. It was the first time Andrew had ever seen it, and he watched the whole thing all the way through without blinking! Ha! He loved it!
We talked about Santa bringing the bell and the first gift of Christmas, so after the movie I told Andrew to check under the tree because Santa might have stopped by. His face was priceless. He looked so excited and he ran straight to the tree...
Andrew's first gift of Christmas!
The Polar Express always makes me cry at the end, and as this new tradition unfolded before my eyes I couldn't help but get emotional. Andrew opened the gift with such joy on his face. He just makes everything so much more fun. I just love being a family and doing special things together.
If you don't know about the Elf on the Shelf, you are in for a treat. It is the neatest tradition and I couldn't wait to start it with Andrew. He is at a perfect age to understand more about Santa.
The story tells of Santa's little elf who comes into our home to report to Santa. He watches if Andrew is "naughty or nice" (Ha!) and also listens to what he wants for Christmas. Then he reports back to Santa. The fun part is, every morning when Andrew wakes up, the elf is hiding in a different spot in the room! So we get to search and look for the elf. We are going to make it a tradition that Santa's elf comes every year on Thanksgiving night, so when Andrew wakes up in the morning he'll get to find him for the first time of the season!
The story that comes with it is great because it explains why the elf doesn't "talk" and it says that if you touch the elf the "magic" might go away. It does a really good job of explaining it to kids so they understand how it all works. Andrew listened intently to the whole story and kept looking up and smiling at daddy reading it.
We put him up on the TV armoire before Andrew went to bed and he waved night night!
When he wakes up in the morning, Santa's elf will be here...
Right beside Andrew's stocking.
This is going to be so much fun! (I think I'm almost having as much fun as Andrew!)
We hope your family had a blessed Thanksgiving!