Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Garden State Holiday

We continued our Christmas celebrations into December 26th. Who can manage seeing everyone in one day? First up was meeting Uncle Mike and Joseph's only 1st cousins on my side of the family, 13 year old Michael and 11 year old Samantha. We (sadly) haven't seen them in over a year, and it was so great to catch up with them and have them see how much JT has changed. And since we're still getting up around 6am, meeting for breakfast was a cinch for us. Not as easy for the older kids!

Next we drove up to North Jersey (where I grew up), where many of my relatives still live. My Uncle Peter and "Aunt" Debi were kind enough and brave enough to have the clan over for a visit. Debi went crazy and cooked a huge, elaborate, multi-course meal for us, which was just incredible! She totally deserves a major kitchen renovation with cooking skills like that ;)

Joseph finally got to meet his Uncle Pauly and see my Aunt Anna Marie and Uncle Jimmy again. Jimmy does a pretty good Donald Duck voice, which Joseph thought was pretty funny.

Joseph was surprisingly shy when we first arrived, but he was pretty quick to warm up to a room full of big people. And he was sure to show us all over and over and over again that he's "SO BIG!" too - which provided us with a perfectly bloggable picture of him with our fabulous hosts. Thanks again Peter and Debi!

Last up was the drive back to my parents' house, and eventually back to DC. Would have been a perfect trip except for yet another boo-boo that happened on my watch, when Joseph tried to grab a hot light bulb and hurt his hand. But he's fine, and that wraps up the festivities.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Have yourself a "techie" little Christmas

One of the cooler moments this year: being able to spend some time on Christmas morning with our family in Louisiana, thanks to modern technology (that webcam Mimi bought for us during her last visit). We were also able to see Aunt Suthern, Uncle Glenn, and cousins Leyton and Ashton, who were vacationing for the week in Vail.

Then we got to see what Santa brought! Since Jack has been naughty and won't share his Elmo, Joseph got one of his one. And there were even some treats for the cats!

Then we packed up, and headed off to New Jersey....

"Christmas Eve in Washington...."

was an absolutely wonderful night! (But it also happens to be the title of an awful holiday song - do they play that anywhere outside of the DC area?)

Joseph woke up from his nap early enough for us to attend the family mass at the church where he was baptized. He looked adorable in his little blazer, and he was an absolute angel the entire time - not a single moment of fussing or crying!

Back at home, after dinner, we changed into our jammies and did all the usual stuff:

Opened some presents that people had sent for Joseph (not the ones Santa would deliver later, of course!):

Hung the stockings by the chimney, with care:

Put out some cookies for old St. Nick:

And read "The Night Before Christmas" before putting him to bed:

Then we had our own dinner, lit a fire, and exchanged our gifts to eachother. This is the pile for both of us, not just Brent!

As you can see, Brent and I have very different styles. I wanted some Converse low tops, he wanted Cole Haan slippers. They say opposites attract, right? We were both happy with our gifts, and more importantly, it was a really special night with our baby boy.

But there's much more to post!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Under Construction

Our friends Mallory & David host an awesome party every year now - they make a gingerbread house for every guest and provide all the supplies for us to decorate them. Last year JT had the stomach bug, so we didn't stay long and didn't get to decorate one. We were really excited to go this year!

If he ever asks, please tell Joseph that I DID let him eat candy at this party. Even though you would be lying. But he sure went to town on a dried mango.

Pug Mug

We were lucky to be able to spend Saturday night with our good friends/neighbors and their 2 month old son, Benjamin. I was curious to see how Joseph would react to a baby (not that we have any ideas about having one), and he was just fine. Maybe it was because Benjamin slept most of the time, but more than likely it was because Maia and Bill have a dog that kept his interest.

Joseph LOVES their Pug Mugsley, and Mugsley is very tolerant of Joseph. He even helped open his Christmas present.

Since the day he was born, everyone has said what a cute little pug nose Joseph has. But however cute Mugsley may be, please don't tell me you see a resemblance!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

In Good Company

Well, we've sadly but amusingly joined the ranks of many of you whose child had a meltdown getting their picture taken with Santa. Maybe it was the hour and a half wait that got to him, or the intense pressure to get in quickly and get out of everyone else's way, but there was no way he was doing this alone - so we took one for the team and joined him in Santa's lap. Ho! Ho! Ho!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Santa's Helpers

After Joseph went to sleep last night, we worked like maniacs to get the tree decorated so it would be ready for him in the morning. We're generally not flashing light people, but we had a hunch the little one might enjoy it.

There's a gate on the door to the room, but sure enough, little by little, the bottom 1/2 of that tree is gonna get pretty bare.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Oh, Christmas Tree!

We got our Christmas tree yesterday from a local nursery. Joseph was a little (rein)deer in the headlights at 1st, totally not interested in the trees when there was dirt and rocks to get into.

This one was juuuuuust right!

Since it only took 5 minutes to find our tree, we had fun playing hide and seek with the really bigs ones and goofing around in the greenhouse with all the pointsettias.

Ready to go!

After squirreling away little bits of cash over the past year, I finally saved up enough to buy a fancy digital SLR camera - an early Christmas present to myself. So I practiced being all artsy-fartsy.

We had to trim quite a bit off the bottom to fit it into the stand, but it's the perfect height, just a few inches shy of the ceiling.

Now to find the time to decorate it....

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Let's Get Physical

Instead of a regular playdate a few weeks back, Jack invited us to join him at his Gymboree class. Joseph had a blast, and I was able to see past my germ phobia to let him have a good time.

I am amazed when we go to these classes and I find out that Joseph can do a lot more than I knew! Pretty good balance...

So we decided to check out a gym closer to our house yesterday, and Joseph had a great time again. I don't know why, but instead of kid music, this gym pretty much played Madonna nonstop - and it's a little odd to hear the song "Live to Tell" when my son is trying to go down steps alone for the 1st time.

Seriously, doesn't everyone think this is just one big germ pit, or is it just me?!!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008


The holiday season is officially upon us, and I better get back to blogging. It's been a week since the last entry! Last night I got to attend the 1st party of the season at Meredith's. Brent stayed home while Joseph slept, and a few of us joked at the party how all the "wives" got to go out while the hubbies stayed home with the kids. I was so involved in adult converastion and catching up with good friends that I never took a single picture.

Today Papa and Joe Joe got to share in the holiday spirit as we ventured downtown. Union Station is beautiful without any decorations, but it was even more gorgeous with this huge tree.

We then walked over to the Botanical Gardens, where every year they have a huge train setup which is fascinating for the kids. But man, it is COLD outside!! We even got a light dusting of snow this afternoon.

There were bridges and tracks up to the ceiling and crisscrossing everywhere, and Joseph just kept staring at everything in amazement and pointing at the trains as they came around corners.

There's a lot of fun things to do with kids in DC, and much more holiday cheer to come!