After our morning of birthday festivities, we spent the rest of the day with our friends Kimberly and Jeff and their adorable son. Kim and Jeff are two of our favorite people, and we were thrilled when they invited our family over for Thanksgiving dinner. We had a great time, and of course, the food was delicious!
Jeff smoked a turkey for hours, and we were not disappointed!
Nathan and I are grateful we have made such amazing friends in Utah. It's pretty wonderful knowing there are people living nearby who love you like family. I always get homesick during the holidays, so this made things less painful for me. The food certainly lifted my mood as well :)
After dinner, we made a horrible decision to go to Walmart for Black Friday. There were a few items I really wanted, and I thought it wouldn't be too bad. I was wrong.
It was crazy, terrifying, anxiety-inducing, and not an experience I want to ever repeat. My friend Julie came to get a Roku with me, and Nathan ended up leaving with the kids. We got what we came for, and that made me happy.
Jurassic Park on Blu-Ray for only 5 bucks? Yes, please.
I can't believe our boys are two already! The first year was pretty stressful, but this second year has been a breeze compared to all those sleepness nights, continuous feedings, and countless diaper changes.
These boys are so wonderful! They definitely share the same interests, but they are certainly two distinct individuals. If I were to use one word to define each boy, I would say Ezra is sensitive and Elliott is carefree. They are both incredibly sweet and love cuddling with me (something Eliza never did!). Elliott always looks like he wants to run around and have a good time, while Ezra is most thoughtful and prefers just to sit with me and cuddle. They aren't speaking too much, but when they say the few words they know, it is with the softest, cutest voices.
I decided to list some of their likes for their birthday and had a difficult time coming up with unique interests for each boy. They really just love to always be together and do the same things.
We began the day with cinnamon rolls and birthday candles. The boys are used to having pancakes, eggs, and smoothies most mornings, so this was certainly a treat. They were a little confused at first, but didn't turn down a delicious breakfast.
Because it was Thanksgiving and we had a busy day planned, we decided to open presents first thing in the morning. Ezra and Elliott are currently obsessed with letters and numbers, so we told our family that they would enjoy any present that was alphabet or number related. The boys were so excited to practice to see their gifts!
Eliza was a little sad she didn't get presents, too, but eventually was okay with letting the boys play with their new toys.
My aunt is always very thoughtful and sends birthday cards every year. She realized Eliza might feel a little left out, so she sent her a card, too, with five dollars inside. After that, Eliza was one happy little girl!
We then made Mickey Mouse cupcakes (Eliza's idea) and got ready for the rest of our Thanksgiving day plans!
The boys loved the cupcakes, but they absolutely hated it when we sang to them. Ezra even threw his cupcake on the ground because he was so upset. I really hope they grow out of "I hate it when it anyone sings" stage soon.
I love that their birthday was on Thanksgiving this year because they are two of the people I am the most grateful for. We love you, Ezra and Elliott!
It's the day before the Ezra and Elliott's second birthday and Thanksgiving, and I am incredibly sick. Again. Fever, flu-like symptoms, and a general sense of feeling absolutely miserable have kept me in bed the majority of the day.
Again, Nathan comes to the rescue. He has done an amazing job of taking care of all of the household duties in addition to coming up with a few activities for the children. This morning, he surprised Eliza with her little elf Tiana, who has finally returned from the North Pole. Tiana brought a gingerbread house with her, and Eliza was thrilled to have a project.
I'm convinced tomorrow will be better. We've got too many fun plans for me to be sick!
We are so lucky to live in an amazing community that is extremely kid-friendly. There are two parks within walking distance (three if I was really motivated to walk a half mile), and the kids have enjoyed our afternoon routine of going to the playground every day. Today, Nathan didn't have his late class, so he was able to join us for some fun times. To say the kids love playing with their dad is quite the understatement--he puts me to shame! All they want to do is play with Dad when he is around. I don't mind, though :) I love that they love him so much.
After we played at the park, we went to the little farm across the street to see the baby llama and it's mama. It's probably the cutest thing in the world.
It was a great day, and one of those times when life isn't too stressful or chaotic to feel the absolute joy of being a parent and wife. Life is pretty wonderful.
Eliza's class had a traditional Thanksgiving meal at preschool today. The kids all made adorable pilgrim hats and then learned all about Thanksgiving. Eliza couldn't wait to tell me everything she learned and insisted that we have a turkey on Thanksgiving day. I promised her that would happen.
After a morning full of cuddling congested and clingy little ones, Nathan suggested we finally go and buy some decorations for our tree. He thought a bit of Christmas cheer might lift everyone's spirits a little.
We got to the store, and Eliza was absolutely delighted by all of the various decorations. She spent so much time looking over everything and finally announced that she had found the perfect decorations for our tree.
Nathan and I would have never chosen purple, hot pink, and turquoise ornaments, but how could we say no to our four year old? She was so excited to get home and put everything on the tree.
I'm usually opposed to artificial trees, but Nathan found such a great deal on a pre-lit tree that it made sense to buy it. Nathan did a good job of making the branches look full, I put hooks on the ornaments, and Eliza got to work hanging everything!
I'm pretty sure this girl is going to be an artist. She has an uncanny ability to make things look great! She spent a considerable amount of time looking at the tree and judging where she should hang out the nice ornament. She was very careful not to hang two similar ornaments next to each other and would occasionally step back to admire her work. It was fun just to watch her. She loved the "shiny" ornaments the most and the fact that she could see her reflection in them.
She was definitely pleased with the final product, and so were we! Nathan and I jokingly said that we never should have doubted her selection of ornaments because everything looked wonderful!
It really feels like the Christmas season now. And I couldn't be happier :)