Friday, December 30, 2016

25 Days of Christmas

We continued our tradition and did the 25 Days of Christmas again.  This year was a little more hectic and busier with just extra stuff on top of all the Christmas busyness.    Kevin was swamped with work, he was staying up super late to get it all done.  Dane had Cub Scout meetings and golf lessons,  a ton of extra school stuff going on, way more than normal.  I was working at my church more often than I like, and my volunteer commitments were insanely busy.  December snuck up on us this year. Anyway life was just busy, so there were some days we weren't able to do much and a couple days we skipped all together.  Gasp! Dane loves doing the 25 days of Christmas, and he really is easy to please so we squeezed in as much Christmas fun as we could.  Dopey, our elf also arrived for some Christmas fun.  He had to really reach for ideas this year, and stay out of reach of Jman.  This year was by far his laziest work.  HAHA!

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 Dopey arrived bright and early on November 30th.  He is getting older, so his energy level has decreased quite a bit over the years.  It happens to the best of them.  He brought Dane and Jace both some pjs, a new Christmas movie to add to our collection and some Little Debbie Christmas trees.  Maybe he made a stop by Target before heading to our house.  We'll never know.



 On the First Day of Christmas...

We started off our Christmas season with a service project.  I found an organization here in town that ships care packages to troops overseas.  The organization was created by a group of moms who had children in the military a few years ago.  After sending care packages to their loved ones like normal parents would, their sons asked if they could send extra stuff in their next package for the troops that weren't getting any mail.  Insert the tears.  The parents started sending multiple packages, and by word of mouth it turned into a whole organization with quite a few volunteers.  They do not give out any addresses to those wanting to put together a package in order to protect the troops and to keep it secure.  Once you pack a box they take it and ship if for you for free! I met the nicest lady who handled our packages from the organization. Her son is currently in the reserves, and she's been a part of this organization for a few years now.

We made this into a 2 part event due to it falling during the week.  The first night, which was actually the day before our Christmas countdown started, we went shopping to buy all the goodies for our boxes.  We hit up the Dollar Tree first, and then went to Walmart to get things we couldn't find.  Dane really enjoyed shopping for things he thought they would enjoy.  I had done quite a bit of research on what type of items make great care packages for troops.  The second day we went by the post office to get boxes and packaged it all up. We had to really play with it and rearrange everything a few times to fit everything that we had bought into the box.  Dane added a letter in both of the boxes for a personal touch.
Great way to start off the Christmas season.  Dane was super excited about it, and it opened up lots of conversations about the way troops live while overseas and serve and protect our country.  It also was a great way to show kindness and make giving an important part of the Christmas season.








Dopey brought some freezing weather and let us know we needed to bundle up.

On the 2nd Day of Christmas...
We went to Bass Pro to see Santa, and then came home and watched the Santa Clause movie that evening.  Such a fun Santa experience, we go every year.  Fun stuff for the kids to do while we wait to see Santa, and it's decorated so Christmasy.  This year we had a bit of a fiasco with the picture, the lady wouldn't let us do 2 single pictures of the kids.  So, I just got Dane's and I brought Jace back a couple days later to get his. Santa had his helper the first time that we went.  The Santa that Jace saw is the same Santa that Dane has seen the last several years, so I was disappointed that he wasn't there on the day that I brought Dane this year.  Jace wasn't a fan.  He freaked out when I put him on Santa's lap.  He is still very much into stranger danger.  We came home and watched the Santa Clause movie that evening to end the day.







































Dopey left another little surprise.  He had a coupon for buy one get 2nd 50% off.  Dopey is a bargain shopper.


One the third day of Christmas...
Grinch Night, which is always a favorite!
 The night always includes Grinch cookies, Grinch punch,the animated Grinch movie and Jim Carey one.



 


 

 



 

Because potty jokes makes boys laugh...






On the fourth day of Christmas...

Gingerbread house making was on  the agenda.  A good fun activity for this dreary Sunday.  I bought the village so they could each work on two buildings and not fight over a big one.  Jace hasn't mastered sharing yet.  I made hot chocolate and popcorn for Dane while he worked.  Easy but fun! Jace does not like to get his hands dirty, so anytime icing would get on his hands he would want it to be wiped off.

 









 









 
 




 



 


And this says it all...

On the fifth day of Christmas...

We hit up Starbucks and got some hot chocolate for salvation army bell ringers.  Super fun night!! Dane loved it, and it really made him feel so good to see how happy and surprised they were.  We delivered 3 hot chocolates and dropped some change into their buckets and they were so appreciative.  One requested no photos, so we respected that.  I was happy that December brought us a chilly evening.  Dane asked why people only collect money at Christmas time and not during the summer?? Which I thought was a great point.  We should be serving others all year long, so I'm hoping to do more good deeds with him during our summer break!





More Dopey fun


Lots more Christmas fun  to be continued...

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