Thanksgiving and Deck The Halls 2013

This year was our first Thanksgiving as a family of four!  

We started off the morning by going to the Thanksgiving service at our church - I had never been before, but I enjoyed it!  They open up the service for testimonies and sharing what you are thankful for.  It was a nice way to start the day.  I always debate whether I should stand up and say something at services like that though.  Our kids were wiggling all over the pews, but if I had stood up I would have said that I am so grateful for them.  It was a challenge getting pregnant with Wyatt and Gwen, and then the Lord blessed us with this sweet surprise baby.  We haven't been through nearly as much as some to get our kids, but what we did go through has just cemented to me how great a blessing children are!  Even when they don't sit still in church and dad takes the baby out, and then the toddler spends the rest of the service waving at said baby who he can see through the back door and occasionally yelling out "Hi Gwendolyn!" while people are trying to talk.  Ahem.  

 We switch off every year between visiting my family and visiting Derek's family on holidays, and this year we spent Thanksgiving with Derek's mom and dad.

Family picture.

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Gwen's first Thanksgiving!  She ate everything we gave her, so I think she enjoyed it.  I suspect that sweet potatoes were her favorite.

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Wyatt had a fun time playing and reading his book with Poppa!  He didn't want to eat dinner though.  Crazy kid.

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The kids with their Poppa and Gramie!

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Everything was delicious, and after dinner we played one of our favorite dice games.  It was a lovely Thanksgiving!

On Friday I went Black Friday shopping with my mom and sister and pretty much finished all my Christmas shopping.  Then we headed to the mall because our church held a flash mob there!  It was fun to watch and they did a great job!

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On Saturday we packed up the kids and went to a small town Christmas parade!  It was fun to watch Wyatt this year, because he loved everything about the parade.  Gwen was just cold, but she liked smiling at and charming all the people around us.

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I took Derek to one of the sandwich shops in town that I go to for lunch sometimes (the parade was right across from where I work), and Wyatt and Gwen were so smiley!

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 Then we came home and worked on setting up the Christmas tree!

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Of course Gwen had to pick out her stocking.  Years ago I found these little stockings I liked at Hobby Lobby, so I bought up a few of them for my future children.  We let Wyatt pick his stocking for his first Christmas, so this year Gwen picked hers!  She chose the red one!

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Playing with the nativity set.

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Then we started decorating the tree!  Wyatt gets really into putting the ornaments up.  I love watching him!
  
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Gwen liked looking at the ornaments too.  I think the favorites for both kids were the sparkly ornaments!

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Gwen kept watching Wyatt put the ornaments on the branches, and she actually grabbed an ornament, crawled over the the tree, and tried to put it up!  It was so cute!

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Gwen "helped" me put the tree skirt on, and Wyatt was dying to put up the star with Derek!

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I love these pictures, Wyatt loved putting the star up!

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 And just staring at our pretty tree when it was all done.
  
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Derek and I got to wrap up the weekend on Sunday with a date!  We went to see Catching Fire.  I read The Hunger Games last year and I have very mixed feelings about the Hunger Games, but I wanted to see the other two movies to see how it ends.  Mostly because they sucked me in with the love story - I want to see what happens with Katniss and Peeta.  After watching the movie (which I liked much better than the first one, movie or book), I decided to go ahead and read the other two books in the series.
I'm still thinking I would not recommend this series to just any young teenager, because it is very violent.  It bothers me a bit that it's geared toward teenagers, because I'm not convinced that every teenager in our society will handle it well or be able to pull any point out of it.  The violence is supposed to be horrible in the book, but the whole story is still very glamorized.  And I still don't think the "point" is well represented in the books (so far), but I will withhold final judgement until I finish the series.

We are a little late on starting advent, so as I write this it's our plan to start tonight!  Derek's brother and sister-in-law always send advent stuff for us every year, to go with the advent calendar they gave us, and there are quite a few presents and goodies waiting for the kids as we get closer to Christmas!  I think Wyatt will love it.

I love this time of year!
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Hannah said...

Oh, those pictures of decorating your tree are so precious! I love that you all do an advent calendar. I would love to do one, but just can't seem to find a good one for babies. What do you all do?

Sarah Nicole said...

Your babies are so precious! I just love the way you dress them! :)

Michelle said...

I love the picture of Wyatt reading the Night Before Christmas. The look on his face is adorable!

Meghan said...

You are glowing Momma! I can't believe how big Gwen looks and Wyatt too. Such beautiful kiddos.

Susannah said...

This sounds like a fabulous Thanksgiving weekend!

Melanie said...

Great pictures! You need to take one of your tree all finished and decorated!

Caroline said...

What a sweet family, great pictures!

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