2017! A new year! While I am super excited for a clean slate and the fresh start a new year brings, I still needed to put together a little recap of the holidays in 2016. One of the reasons I started blogging was to make my blog a sort of journal. A place I can always come to and look back on years past, be the nostalgic person that I am and just immerse myself in a moment or memory from long ago. I want to be able to show our children bits of their past, capture all those exciting moments and all those totally ordinary moments that make up “us”, our family and our lives together. Whoa, when did this turn into a post about why I blog? Memories are important to me, but I digress, Holidays 2016!
I felt so so blessed to be able to spend Christmas in Minnesota for the second year in a row! With Mike’s teaching schedule we really only have three windows of time a year we can make a trip up there longer than a day and 1/2. Christmas break and Spring break and one week in the summer. He teaches and works other odd jobs during the summer, so there is really only one full week he has totally off work. Winter break is not the same because he is assistant coaching basketball at the high school and still has practice and games. We are lucky that he WAS allowed to miss a couple practices so we could at least stay in MN the 24-28. It was wonderful having Mike’s family there with us too! His parents and sister Liz came up for the weekend, and it is just so nice having your childhood home filled with family, the scents you grew up with on Christmas, the decorations, the tree, seeing your little ones enjoy the same traditions you did when you were little and getting to live it all over again through their eyes. Just magical.
Mike and I even managed to sneak in a coffee date while we were there! We drove to the U campus (where we met) and just drove around reminiscing on our college days there and all the fun memories we have there with each other and our friends. We drove by every dorm, apartment and house we lived in ( and there’s quite a few!) and stopped at the watchtower to lookout over the beautiful view. Problem was the hill to get to said watchtower was covered in ice. My dear husband, being the romantic that he is, still wanted to go up said ice hill and look out at the view…..so we went, survived unscathed, barely, and I even have a picture to prove it 😉 On the way home we stopped by the chapel where we got married. It looked just the same, only covered in snow. It was such a crazy feeling walking down those steps again hand in hand!
We didnt arrive at my parents until Christmas Eve night so instead of doing our big Christmas dinner that night like we usually do we made it a pizza night and saved the meal for lunch Christmas day so it wouldnt be so rushed. That meal is my faaaaavorite meal ever so I for one wanted time to savor it. Mia was soooo excited Christmas Eve for Santa to come I ended up having to sleep with her in the bunk beds in my brother’s old room lol. The girl just could not handle the excitement! Christmas morning came and she went straight to my parents to wake them up. Then I rushed down to the basement where Joaquim and Mike were sleeping to make sure he didnt miss her coming downstairs. That.never.gets.old. The excitement ,the shrieks of joy, it is so fun to watch it all. We all got spoiled with lovely presents and enjoyed a light breakfast before lunch preparations began. It was a nice low key vibe all day and so so lovely spending time with everyone! My brother Andre and his wife Sam were in Georgia this year with her family and I sure did miss them! We did get to facetime Christmas morning though so thank you technology!
The days in MN came and went too fast like they always do and before I knew it we were back in WI and it was NYE.
That day we went to Mike’s parent’s house for their Christmas! It’s always fun getting together with his family and I love his Mom’s enchiladas that she makes for Christmas! The kids played and played and ran everyone ragged and we all got showered with gifts that we all adored. We headed back home and I realized we didnt even get any hats or glasses or anything for the kid’s for NYE….but I also realized they really did not understand the concept or the fact that they were missing out on any sort of celebration lol. So we tried to make it a pretty normal night for them and put them to bed as usual. Joaquim was so tired he practically asked to go to bed when we got home. With both kiddos asleep Mike popped open a bottle of champagne, I brought out the Godiva chocolate and we watched Whiskey Tango Fox Trot. Well we attempted to but didnt make it through the whole thing. lol. We are getting old! We did pause to see the ball drop and all that and then watched a bit more of the movie before hitting the hay. May sound dull to some but to me that’s all I need. Even before we had kids, before we were married, we never were ones to go out and rage it on NYE. We usually stay in, watch a movie, make a nice meal and sip some champagne, and to me that is the perfect way to end a year.
The next day, New Year’s Day, we had our third and final Christmas celebration at Mike’s Aunt Diane’s house. She always has us over around this time of year and we look forward to it! The kids again ran everyone ragged, Joaquim going up and down every staircase a billion times and Mia wanting anyone and everyone to chase her around with this dog puppet that she first said was a wolf, and then at some point turned into a fox. Like hours of chasing her with that thing, and she was having the time of her life! That night she went off to her Auntie Liz and Auntie Ann’s house for a big girl sleepover! She was a little nervous, I could tell, but with a little nudge and promise of watching Finding Dory she was ready to go! She had a blast! So fun seeing her get to do fun things like this as she grows 🙂
And now here are some pictures: