It’s that time of year again! And, by that, I mean the time of year I start throwing ornaments all over the house and call them decorations.
November was a bit of a whirlwind for us, so we decorated right before we left for the beach for Thanksgiving. We have a strict no-Christmas-decorations-before-Thanksgiving rule, but Thanksgiving was late this year and we knew we’d be tired coming home from a road trip.
Blurry, but look how excited Jack was about putting the star on the tree.
When Jack’s ready to pose, he is all in. He was in the best of moods going through all the boxes and pulling out all the decorations.
Jack’s colorful tree topper to match his crazy tree, thanks to Nana
I absolutely love our tree. It’s nice and cozy and almost always plugged in since we spend most of our time at home in the living room. In fact, you can find Jack and I playing under the tree most days.
We just got home from Disney World, so having the monorail around the tree just seemed right.
For the past two years, I’ve wrapped presents in brown paper, which I loved, but thought it was time for some color this year. There’s no wrapping theme, just a free for all.
I always have a hard time coming up with something for the kitchen table. This was out of odds and ends around the house; I don’t hate it. It’s good enough. And festive, right?
I asked for Christmas decorations for my birthday, which is this month. I never thought that’d be something I’d ask for, but I’m glad I did. This pillow and the wooden sign on the mantle were gifts from my parents.
I gave up looking at ideas for Christmas mantles on Pinterest because it’s a bit overwhelming and I still didn’t know what I wanted. All I knew was I wanted the window and the sign up there and some type of real wreath on the window.
I couldn’t find a real wreath at a price I liked, so I bought this bundle from Home Depot. I, also, brought home extra tree limbs/scraps that I’ve been cutting up and using randomly.
Reid and I will be getting stockings to coordinate with Jack’s something during the next year. I’ve always wanted to do that, so I’m excited!
This was going on under the mantle while I was taking pictures. Don’t know where he gets this from…
The chalkboard is about to change; Jack wants something with candy canes.
And that’s mostly it.
I’m really happy with the feel of everything, which was especially important to me this year since we’ll be spending Christmas at home this year. Santa is actually coming to our house! It’s a really big deal to us. Not exactly the Santa part, but being in our home for Christmas. Although, it is a little bittersweet not being with a lot of family on Christmas day, but know it’ll be a relaxing day at home just the three of us, something we’ve never done.
I’m not sure how it started, but I’m close to being finished with all of Jack’s Christmas presents for this year. Normally, I am not this person. Normally, I roll my eyes at this person…Just like you’re doing right now.
I’ve been on eBay for a couple weeks, setting timers for when to bid, and have been watching Facebook resale pages like crazy and have found some good deals.
Jack’s main gift this year will be a Lego table.
This is my inspiration (From Centsational Girl):
The thought of teeny tiny little Legos all over the house doesn’t appeal to me, so this would hopefully fix that problem before it starts.
My parents were able to pick up the table for us at Ikea a couple weeks ago, so we’ll get that from them Thanksgiving. I’ve been looking into those plates, but to cover that table, it’d be over $60–leaving us no budget for the actual Legos!
As we’re entering the world of Legos, we’re realizing these things are EXPENSIVE! I had NO IDEA. What the what. How are these tiny blocks so much money!?* And it’s taken me a while to find just a straight up bucket of Legos, not a kit.
People sell them on eBay by the pound, and, also, at 2nd & Charles, but sometimes it’s $1 an ounce. An ounce of Legos is about 5 pieces, people.
My fear after my parents bought the table and seeing these prices was Jack waking up Christmas morning and wondering why the heck Santa brought him a coffee table, ha!
I finally scored a big box of random Legos from a woman on Facebook. I need to majorly bleach and scrub them, but they’ll get him started. And my friend, Holly, hooked me up with a great Lego deal.
I’m hoping this set will be involved in a Black Friday sale:
As I mentioned yesterday, we can’t walk into the Galleria without visiting the Lego store.
I’m starting to think maybe Legos are the equivalent of American Girl dolls for boys? I’ve seen little girls pour over the American Girl catalogs and oooo and ahhhh over it. And now, Jack is oooing and ahhhing over the Lego catalog.
He was literally exclaiming with excitement over all the things he found in it.
Honestly, I think all three of us are a little mesmerized by all of it.
It has led to Jack cutting out pictures and gluing them to sheets as a type of wish list.
I really want Jack and Reid to get this for Christmas.
Jack needs this ornament, I’m sure.
And I’m pretty sure we’ll be getting this Advent calendar some day.
We’re going on a long road trip soon, so I’ve been trying to think of entertaining things for Jack in the car. Initially, I thought about making a little road/town set out of felt for his cars, but he might be a little old for it and it’d be a lot of work.
I’ve seen travel Lego boxes online with a little board glued to the inside of a crayon box and thought that would be fun, but stepped it up a little.
I bought the cookie sheet at the Dollar Tree because he can use it for this and for coloring in the car. The sheet came from the Lego store. And the box came from Etsy.
These will be his first legit Legos. I can’t wait to give these to him when we get on the road!
We’ll be visiting a massive Lego store later this month, so I can’t wait to see Jack lose his mind when we walk in!
*I was informed by a friend there’s a podcast somewhere explaining the popularity and price of Legos, but can’t find it. I did find this, though.
Last week, there was a post from a local magazine on Facebook asking for children ages 3-6 for a carousel photo shoot, so I thought I’d send Jack’s picture in, just for kicks.
They emailed right back and said they’d like him to come to the shoot and gave us more details.
I was really nervous how Jack would do because he won’t even take his beanbag up to the basket by himself at story time, how will he ever ride the carousel in front of strangers without me?
We’d been talking it up to Jack, preparing him for what would be expected of him and he said he could do it.
We got there right at 8am. It was kind of cool to be in a quiet and deserted Galleria.
I expected a lot more children, but turns out they selected 4 children out of the 75+ emails they had received! Two boys and two girls.
They took individual shots first of the kids riding a reindeer.
Jack, my daredevil (yeah, right), requested to sit in the sleigh.
He did so good!!!! I couldn’t believe he never asked for me to sit with him and never acted scared. I’m so proud of his bravery!
I did have to jump around behind the photographer and act like an idiot so his smiles wouldn’t look so fake.
Eventually, he got on a reindeer, which is big deal.
Then, they put all the children on and let them ride so they could get more photos.
Overall, he got to ride 5 times in a row. What a dream come true for any kid, right?
We were told the issue with these photos will be out at the end of this month. I’m excited to see if his picture actually makes it in there, you never know.
Afterward, we had to go by the Lego store, even if they weren’t open yet.
We always love looking at their window displays, anyway.
Homeboy want this Ewok Village. That’s not going to happen. Sorry, buddy.
When Jack got in bed last night, he told me it was a great day for Halloween. And it was.
We started the day off with a long walk around the neighborhood. Seeing who could spot pumpkins or other Halloween decorations first became a game. Afterward, I needed milk for a smoothie, so we went to a close grocery store that has really cheap candy.
Jack bought a massive Tootsie Roll and some other goodies with the candy money my parents sent him.
We met up with Jessica and her boys for trick-or-treating at the Hoover Library.
Crosby was the cutest fox!
Jack loved shooting EVERYBODY.
I was really thankful for everyone playing along with Jack. It was really sweet.
But, poor Crosby got shot a lot. Too much.
Every desk in this massive library had candy for the kids. It was cute and gave us something festive to do during the day since everything else seems to always be at night.
Krispy Kreme was offering a free donut for every person in a costume, so that was our next stop.
Jack and I went home for the afternoon to clean up and get ready for that evening.
Reid’s parents came over to eat dinner and trick-or-treat with us. They brought my favorite sugar cookies!
At one point, someone in the neighborhood was thinking of posting signs to postpone trick-or-treating until tonight because of rain, but that didn’t happen, thankfully! We would have gone in the rain if we had to!
Jack was really into it, of course.
Every Halloween, I realize how much I love our neighborhood. Most of our neighbors get into it and are so sweet.
This is Jack’s favorite Halloween decoration. He loves this cat!
Jack made sure to shoot every person who gave him candy. This guy had a car set up and a gun ready for Jack. After he gave him candy, of course.
Jack wouldn’t get in his car, but Nana did, ha!
After two streets, it started to rain a bit, so we headed home. Jack’s bucket was almost full, anyway.
Jack had a costume change and went through his candy while waiting on trick-or-treaters to come to our house. He told me later that he likes giving out candy better than going to get candy.
We saw a lot of zombies. And even a zombie cat. Whaaaaaa???
All in all, it was a great day.
PS: Best costume of the night goes to this little mermaid:
The “bubbles” were lit up with glow sticks inside. It was so cute and creative!
Friday afternoon, Jack and I made cookies. We’ve had Halloween sprinkles we’d been saving.
Earlier that day, Jack and I worked on a race track.
This is when he laid down and told me to set all the cars up by myself. Um, no.
Saturday, we went to a local Fall Festival.
Jack is Captain Rex this year for Halloween. We have run into one person who knew who he was. Most people just call him a storm trooper, which is fine. Captain Rex is from The Clone Wars.
Jack stayed in character the entire time. And shot everybody. Even Woody.
One person told Jack he was a cool looking Luke Skywalker. I know not everyone is up on their Star Wars, but really!?
We went down the little Trick-or-Treat trail.
No chocolate on this trick-or-treat trail. That’s the real trick.
Jack couldn’t break character during photos.
Look who we found working out at the festival:
On the way home, we bought pumpkins at a local grocery store because they were cheap and HUGE!
Then, headed to the place Jack called the pumpkin patch. It’s really a local nursery.
We think it’d be cool if we had this house for Chewy in our backyard.
On the way home, I remembered just in time that our library was having a festival. Jack played games and got candy.
That afternoon, Casey and Sheena came over football, taco soup, and scary stories. Jack loves them. Maybe too much. He was all over them the whole time, ha! I have no pictures to prove it, though. Whomp whomp.
Sunday afternoon, Reid and Jack worked on pumpkins. I love this shot.
We were going to hit up a couple church fall festivals, but we didn’t feel like driving far. One was supposed to have cotton candy, popcorn, and face painting. What more could you want? Instead, we went to a trunk or treat by our house.
Tip of the day: If you’re looking for candy and not the crappy Jolly Rancher candy, go to trunk or treats! Loads of chocolate!
Jack was content to walk up and grab one piece of candy from each bucket. I made sure to pull him aside and tell him it’s ok to dig your hand in there and get a big handful. Parenting skills 101, people.
Meanwhile, the mom behind me was instructing her child to only get one piece.
One of my favorite moments from the weekend was getting home that night and all three of us going through Jack’s candy together and trying different things. Jack organized it all and pulled out all the “disgusting candy.”
Jack’s tried new candies this week and has found a new love for Tootsie Rolls, Nerds, and Reese’s Cups.
Let’s act like it hasn’t been over a month since I posted and just pick up as if I blog all the time.
Jack and I have been sick with RSV (basically, a really bad cold) since last Friday. (I wasn’t officially tested, but I’m pretty sure I had RSV, too.) We’re still not a 100%, but today was the best we’ve felt, so we ventured out a little.
We went to the Dollar Store for a couple Halloween decorations.
Never have I ever decorated for Halloween. Or even had the desire to do so.
But, living with a little boy who loves the word “spooky” and is obsessed with finding spiders changes you.
It started yesterday as something to help cheer Jack up. I was only going to do a little printable banner. But, then, I kept going.
It’s very thrown together, but whatever; it’ll only be up a week, anyway.
The fabric banner is just scraps of fabric hot glued to a piece of twine.
The spiders were cut out with my Silhouette and glued to twine. I, also, cut out bats and taped them to the wall. Fancy, right? (It’s a joke.)
The Boo banner was a free printable from HowDoesShe.com.
I think the black spider web is my favorite part. Dollar Tree find. And it came with a glow in the dark spider for Jack.
Jack chose this gloriousness for his room.
I had some spiders left over, so I hung them above our dining table and added a fake web. That web stuff is hard to work with and doesn’t look right.
The plastic table cover is from Wal-Marts.
This banner came from Be Different…Act Normal. Love it!
Not crazy about the “spider webs,” but Jack likes them, so they’re staying.
Jack went crazy over this plastic goblet at the Dollar Tree, so it came home with us, too. He’s been drinking out of it all afternoon.
I’m really happy I got in the mood to decorate a little for Halloween. It’s nice to be festive and have a party-feel to our house.
I don’t know what Halloween music we’d listen to, so we listed to Christmas music while we decorated.
I’m really looking forward to taking Jack to a few Fall festivals this weekend. Just say face painting and candy and we’ll be there.
A couple of weeks ago, Sarah Kate and her family were in town from Savannah for a week. Holly, Sarah Kate and I met up at the zoo with all 7 (really six; Holly’s niece came, too) kids.
There’s just something about seeing all our kids together. It’s so special. And a little crazy. We only lost one kid once and it was only for a couple of minutes. Score!
Jack and I hung out with Sarah Kate and her family a couple more times that week at her hotel. Jack loves her kids and had so much fun with them!
That same week, Clint and Theresa were in town, so we got to visit with them a little.
We went to Steel City Pops and I happened to take some Christmas card photos for them. Not really. But, I really do think Deena should mail these out at Christmas.
Jack was there, too, but he was having a “I chose the wrong flavor popsicle and it’s too late and I’m going to cry” issue.
A few weeks ago, Dustin, Cammie, and the kids came up for a school reunion. During the reunion, we met up with Max, Sally, Kilee and Carter for dinner.
There are no pictures of the three kids because they can’t all cooperate at the same time and it’s not worth the headache.
Last week, my mom came in town for a couple days to help out while Reid and I had some medical tests done. (We’re fine!) At first, we told her not to come up since we thought we’d be fine, but turns out it is a goooood thing she was here to take care of Jack and, at times, me.
Jack and Chewie’s relationship is still going strong.
Jack’s favorite things to watch right now are America’s Funniest Videos and a DVD Reid made of all our videos from Disney World last year.
Choosing a Halloween costume might be one of the hardest decisions of Jack’s life, to date. He’s been trying out the ones he already has.
These are some typical shots from our living room. Blocks, cars, trains–everywhere. And mismatched pjs.
And there you have it. Some highlights with some randoms thrown in, too.