Wednesday, December 29, 2010

All Aboard!!

This year over the Thanksgiving holiday, we did something extra special.  We took a train ride on the POLAR EXPRESS!
 I realize I'm hella late posting this but I really thought I had posted them till someone mentioned it at Christmas that they still haven't see our Polar Express pictures!  (sorry Aunt Charlotte!!)

So here ya go...lots and lots of pics!!  It really was an amazing experience.  One that I'm sure we will do again when the little one is old enough to know what's going on.

We drove all the way to Palestine, TX and spent the night so we had plenty of time.  We went early that day and got a good look at the train in the day light and did some shopping in the gift shop since we knew it would be dark and kinda crazy that night.
 Not to mention it made for a great photo op during the day.
The train really was amazing.
 Z was in awe the whole time!

So we went check in our room and grab a bite to eat and changed Z into his PJs.  All the kids (and some adults) wore their PJs, just like in the book and movie. 

Then we got there early and patiently waited for the train to arrive.
It was freezing cold that the twenties.   It even sleeted on the drive there, so standing out in the cold waiting for the train wasn't easy but the excitement got us through it....well that and some refreshments.

 Finally the train came roaring in...all lit up and looking festive!
 We took our seats and waited for the ride to start.
 Z even seemed to gaze out the window at the station as if he was taking it all in and reflecting on it all.
 Once we got moving they started the party right away.  The "cooks" came out and served hot chocolate and sang Christmas songs.  They even came over the intercom and read the book as the staff walked up and down the isles with copies of the books for the kids to see the pictures.
 Then the conductor appeared...
 To punch the tickets of course!
 Z was all too proud and excited to have the conductor punch his ticket!

Soon after that, the train slowed and dimmed the lights.  They began to play the song "Believe" over the intercom and announced "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls...we have arrived at the north pole!"  We looked out the window and saw a wonderful north pole lights display with Santa's house snug in the middle and Santa and Mrs. Claus stood outside waving to us.  I have to admit, I got choked up at that point.  It was so amazing.  All i could thing of was what Z must be thinking and feeling.  He was star struck!

So as the train got moving again on our way back home, they announced that Santa had boarded the train!  Z went crazy!  So excited!
 Santa came by and gave every child a bell from his sleigh.  So special!
 I think he will cherish this bell through his entire childhood!

Then during more Christmas songs, one of the "cooks" grabbed Z and started dancing with him.  He was such a sport!
 Finally our journey was done and we had to leave the Polar Express behind.
 But Z will forever have the memory of this amazing trip.  This is one thing I'm so proud to have done for our little boy.  He will cherish will we.
Just Believe.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Meet Fred

This is Fred...
Fred the Elf.  This year we started the Elf on the Shelf tradition with Z and he has mixed feelings about this.
He does love looking for him but doesn't like the idea of an elf watching him;)  On the night above, Fred decided to hitch a ride to the North Pole on Rudolph;)

I think we may have had too much fun coming up with things to do with Fred!  LOL!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Yogi Mania!!

As you all know my son adores Yogi Bear and Jellystone.  So when we heard the movie was coming out we got working on a game plan.
The last time we went camping there was a sale at the Ranger Station so we stocked up!  We got lots of odds and ins including gift wrap.  Then the week before we went see the movie we wrapped up all the goodies in the Yogi gift wrap and put them under the Christmas tree for Z to find.  Needless to say he was WILD!!  We told him Yogi had left them for him and wanted him to come see his movie!

So decked out in his Yogi gear...we were off to the movies! 
Z was in his glory...totally.
Such a great movie and WONDERFUL experience to share with Z!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Holiday Decor 2010

This year's theme is vintage white & bright green.
I've used some of my fav decorations from Christmas past...
...and added a few new pieces from Christmas present.
New this year is the two cute vintage looking garlands and the white feather trees...all bargains I snatched up from a local boutique that is not closed. 

So Z got really involved in the tree trimming this year.
In addition to his usual star adorning, he also put on two whole boxes of decorations.  He was a champ (and a ham).

Speaking of ham...would you look at this Santa picture.
This has CHEESE written all over it.  I was pretty amazed that he pulled out such a smile for this picture.  Usually if it's not me, David or my mom behind the camera, you won't get a genuine smile.  But this time, he was so excited to see Santa, he was just too proud and had to give a giant REAL smile!  Love it!

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Happy Birthday to me!

So it goes...another year!
This year marks my 33rd year on this earth.  IT was a low key but sweet day indeed.  My hubs took me for dinner at our fav sushi dive and to my suprise, he had arranged for two my dearest friends to meet us! 
How perfect is that?  I was totally suprised!  They had crazy glasses, big plastic rings, hats and noise makers.  What an amazing suprise.  Had a wonderful dinner.  We laughed and chatted and laughed some more.

Then the hubs took me to see a movie which we don't ever get to do.  SO nice.
We even got a visit from Santa...sorta.
It was such a great night.  *sigh*  I'm so blessed.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A Sanders Family Thanksgiving

As has become tradition, we ventured to David's great grandmother's old cabin in the hills of North Louisiana to celebrate the season and give thanks with David's parents.
 Z always loves it because we get to go in the woods and walk around the lake.  He gets to pick up sticks and run and throw pine cones.  We roast hot dogs and marshmallows.  These are the things little boys do...right? 

Yes there was the traditional Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving day but it's about so much more than that to us.  We just love creating these memories for our family.  Time to be together and soak it all in.
 And the perfect time to take some family pics too.
 Every year since we started going we have taken our Christmas picture.  And above was this year's pic.

After dinner, bellies still full...we head to Natchitoches to see the Christmas lights. 
 None of the shops are really open since it's Thanksgiving day but some of the food vendors open up for the Thanksgiving night crowd.
 So we usually get there just before dark to see all the sights and snap a few pics as well as go in the only store that is usually open to buy an annual Christmas ornament to commemorate the occasion.
 Then as it gets dark we get to see the lights transform the river.  We grab a cup of hot chocolate and some snacks (usually nachos and meat pies) and just sit back and watch.

 It never disappoints.

Another Thanksgiving in the books.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

How to Dress a Four Year Old Like a Rock Star...

As you know, my child thinks he is a rock he should be dressed like one...right?
Well step one, go to Children's Place
Yes the above montage was put together with items we purchased for Z from there!

OMG, last night was my first time in there and wow.  I'm impressed.  It all started when I was looking for a robe for Z to wear for our Polar Express ride during the Thanksgiving holidays.  My mom told me she saw one at a second hand store but it was in really bad shape.  She said it had a Children's Place label on it and I should check there.  So I go online and sure enough, they had the cutest little green robe that he would love and it was on sale. could I resist?!  So I called the local store and had them hold it for us.  Then it happened...I walked in the store.  I was amazed at the cute, trendy and just COOL stuff they had for little boys.  Sure lots of it was over priced but apparently they were having a killer sale on accessories and I got tons for our money!
These little hats...FIVE bucks each!  Yowza!  There were some items we loved but they didn't have them in the size we needed so when we got home I got online and snatched up the items we missed out on in the store.  AND I found a 20% off coupon code too!  I'm so excited!  Needless to say, if this is a baby girl in my belly...we are SO in trouble! 

Oh and if you want that coupon's X3CHEAZZ12A...use it and get 20% off your entire purchase!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Love 'dem Vets

We are proud to have two of our grandfathers as war veterans. 
Above is my grandmother with my grandfather (my mother's parents)

Below is David's grandmother with his grandfather
So take the time to remember the veterans in your life.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Comfort Food...

I'm huge on comfort food.  Adore it.  Sometimes it's the only thing that will get me through a horrible day.
So it's no surprise that I've been craving it now that I'm PG.  During a last minute trip to the store I quickly decided what I wanted to cook for the week and made a list in my head as I walked the isles.  I knew I wanted to make meat pie.  So that's just what I did.  Wow it's amazing how something like that will make the ickys go away in a heartbeat.  My aunt Gwen brought us on when we had just gotten home from the hospital with Z and I loved it so much that I had to get her recipe.  It's been a comfort food at our house ever since!

Next up that week... Taco Soup.
Sure lots of people make taco soup but I had never attempted it...and didn't really think I would like it since I like thick cream based soups.  But BOY was I wrong on this one!  It was amazing.  Yum-O!  And just like that, a new comfort food was born.  I love when that happens!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Halloween 2010

For Halloween this year we all got in the spirit!
Z wanted to be Buzz Lightyear (naturally) and he requested that David & I dress as Woody & Jessie.  How could we say no to that?   So we just did some thrift shopping and clothes altering and presto...Jessie & Woody costumes. 
As for Z's costume, well that was just too easy...we already had it but just hadn't given it to him yet!  LOL  So he was in his glory!
We had a great time trick or treating and felt like celebs with all the folks stopping to take pictures!  It was a great experience for Z...he was so proud!

Speaking of proud...
We carved our very first real pumpkin this year.
Not too bad.   Messy as all get out...but it turned out cute and Z loved it!