Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas with the Carings

We have a lovely and relaxing Christmas here in Madison. We tried to start some fun traditions, and succeeded at some while failing at others. I started to make an advent calendar, but only made it through December 15th with ideas, and then failed on like the third day and didn't do what was on the card. Oh well. 

We did make gingerbread cookies, went to some fantastic activities at the UU church including a fun service where the kids dressed up and acted out the nativity, sang in the choir at our ward Christmas program, ate traditional Finnish Christmas Eve dinner with our friends, visited Santa Claus at the mall, and decorated our tree with Christmas cards and homemade salt dough ornaments. The kids received a few gifts each from their grandparents and Aunt Devany, and it was plenty for them. Tim and I watched Christmas movies every night this week, from Love Actually to Mr. Krueger's Christmas. A winter storm blew in a few days before, and so it was a very white Christmas indeed. The nighttime walks through the snow were heavy with the smells and sights of the season. It was a beautiful few weeks.

All the presents were pretty much for him.

Atticus kept saying "this is the best Christmas EVER." Apparently his expectations were set very low.

I attempted to be crafty. They turned out OK, but never hardened and were really porous, and not worth mailing but they were intended for the grandparents and great-grandparents. Oh well, maybe next year!

Who needs expensive ornaments?

The stockings were hung on the... wall... with care.

Terrible Santa Claus, but it was SO nice that they didn't have a photographer and you could just take your own pictures (though we forgot our camera so we just have iPhone pics). Hilldale is the greatest mall ever -- very few chains, lots of local shops, super low-key and non-commercial.

Gingerbread houses at our awesome mall. 
It was a magical season.


  1. So much to comment on!! I'll try to keep it short.

    1. I almost died seeing those baby hand prints.
    2. Whatever is hanging behind your tree is GORGEOUS.
    3. That second Santa picture is fantastic.
    4. The bikini-clad gingerbread woman is hilarious.
    5. Love seeing the Alice/Harrison pic on your tree!

  2. The Carings.... cle-ver. Did you watch The Family Stone? I've been wanting to watch it all month.