Christmas 2015

I am so so behind in the writing of this post that I'm not sure how many of the fun details I actually remember. I have loads of pictures though, so here it goes!

Arkansas here we come! The DC bunch and Adam were all going to be there, too! Unfortunately Christy was sick and couldn't make it.

Sidney loves car picnics! (excuse the mouth full of avocado!)

Roadtrip warrior! He was a total champ in the car. He looked at books for the first half of the trip, then napped. When he woke up we only had an hour left and he was entertained by these new wooden beads I got him to string!

I love me some OliMax! He clearly loves me, too :)

Breakfast with Uncle Adam!

We did a lot of hanging out around the house. It was fun letting the cousins play. They obviously don't see each other much due to geography. 

Uncle Shawn and Oliver are doing...hmmm, not sure?

On Christmas Eve, we decided to go out do dinner. It is not our usual on the night before Christmas, but we did it - and it was lovely! We went to Flying Fish down on the square. 

After dinner we walked across the street to see the Christmas lights...and BONUS! Santa was there!!! Sid was interested until Santa got close. Then he wanted nothing to do with Santa. I'm pretty sure he wanted Santa to go away so that he could continue to drive Sam Walton's truck in peace, ha!

Yasha isn't much for the camera...he's clearly really shy...

Yasha decorated this cookie for Santa! Love his silly face!

My dad used to read The Cajun Night Before Christmas every year on Christmas Eve. We've sort of started a new tradition to let anyone who'd like to, read it! It ain't easy! My mom got creative and gifted the three menfolk with silly gifts in order to help them with their readings later that evening. Let's just say I'm not sure we will ever top the hilarity that came later that night with three...entirely different renditions of The Cajun Night Before Christmas. Gosh we've got some funny dudes in this family! I know they made my dad proud.

Santa brought Sid his first train set! And a few books, too :) 

Grammy with her three little elves! 

Yasha - 4, Sid - 18m, Oli - 12m 
Christmas morning was very exciting with three little boys around! Yasha was a very good helper in being willing to help anyone open their gifts :)

Sid got Grammy a tractor riding tshirt! (it's a big picture of Sid riding the tractor on Grammy's lap)

These boys were always under their Grammy's feet in the kitchen!

Serious cousin conversation taking place below...

Grammy got Sid his own riding Excavator! This kids likes to move "dirt"!

Later that afternoon, we met a photographer at Crystal Bridges to take some family pictures of all of us. So glad we did it! The weather was perfect and we are so pleased with how they turned out. I snapped this one of my sleepy boy who wanted to sit on the tree :)

The days after Christmas were a little crazy. The weather had us in the storm shelter TWICE! The DC crew got stuck for a few extra days on the mountain because of the flooding and it was just crazy. Spring weather in December. Weird!

The storm shelter was interesting. Grammy...Louis...Me...Sid (Sean only joined us the second time)...Shawn...Nastya...Yasha...Oli. Whew! That's a lot of people in a little confined space! BUT - if I ever have to be in a storm shelter again, I hope it's with this crew. Uncle Shawn is loads of fun, entertaining us all by singing I've Been Working on the Railroad. Yasha and Sid did their part by dancing along. Really fun and made the 15 minutes pass by quickly!

Oli snuggles are great :)

More playtime!

They all love climbing into Louis' bed :)

One afternoon my mom put on The Sound of Music. We were all a bit stir crazy because we hadn't left the house due to all the rain. Yasha decided to be silly instead of watch the movie :)

And these two played with the excavator!

Dance party!!

More dog bed lounging...

Christmas was great. It doesn't happen often enough, us all being able to get together. We cherish these times so much and always try to plan our next gathering before leaving each other. Love you, family!


Mountain Time!

If you thought Sid and I didn't take advantage of a free ride up to Grammy's house, you'd be mistaken :) On Sunday after Thanksgiving, we went back to Arkansas with Grammy!

Louis was thrilled ;)
He loves picnic lunches in the car!

We had a pretty low key week. We spent most of our time on the stairs. The stairs? Yep, that's right. Sid mastered all of Grammy's stairs with only a little help. It was exhausting, but worth it because now he's a (semi)pro! We also got the house Christmas ready, since we were all going to be back up for Christmas in just a few short weeks!

Sean drove up on Friday and we spent the weekend doing fun things! We visited the square to see the Christmas lights, Sean cooked ribs (which is always a favorite!), and we got to spend a lot of time with Sid outside. 

Solo play with his truck
Kisses from Lou!

On Thursday, Sid and I were able to go to story time at the library! We love the Bentonville Library story time. It is SO GOOD! The children's librarian (pictured below) is seriously awesome! She captures the attention of these little ones better than anyone I have ever seen in a setting like this. See for yourself!

How cute are these toddlers!
He loves to run around on the mountain with Louis!
Love my little bug!
The swing his Grampa built

On Saturday night we went down to the square so that Sid could run around and see it all lit up. We got there just before sundown. It was perfect timing and oh so fun! This kid loves the freedom to roam (God help me!). No, in all honesty, I love it. His face just lights up when he can just run around! He would run up to strangers and in his sweet little voice and with his tiny hand wave, "Hi!". It'll melt your heart, I tell ya!

Santa's sleigh
Driving Sam Walton's truck
Run Run Run!
I couldn't stop laughing at trying to get Louis and Sid to cooperate! Not an easy task.
Waiting on our mushroom and truffle pizza after watching the ice skaters!
Sid turned 18m while we were there!

Being on the mountain is great. Sid loves his Grammy and LouLou so much. He loves the outdoors and her house is just perfect for a little guy like him to explore. We headed home on Monday, but we weren't sad leaving because we would soon be back for Christmas!  

See you soon, mountain!!