"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Thanksgiving Weekend

We had a fantastic four day break during the Thanksgiving holiday. Cody and I both got Thursday and Friday off, and it was so nice to spend all of that time together with Jaden. On Thanksgiving day we hung out around the house in the morning, and we were actually lucky enough to get Jaden to go down for an early nap around 11:15. With all of the events going on the entire afternoon I was worried he'd never nap at all. After we woke up him from his nap, we headed to my cousin Jodi's house in Cedar Falls for Thanksgiving with my side of the family. The food is always tremendous there! Between Jaden and my cousin's kids, there were seven kids there ages first grade down to 7 months :) It's always a roudy time at my family events! Jaden was so preoccupied by everything and everyone that he didn't even want to take the time to eat his Thanksgiving meal!

This is Jaden on Thanksgiving morning. He looks like such a big boy! :)

After spending a few hours at Jodi's house, we headed to Alison for Thanksgiving at Cody's grandparents. It was us, Cody's parents, his sister Cassi and her daughter Ella, Cody's grandparents, and Cody's aunt and uncle and two cousins. Jaden had a good time there, too but again was too preoccupied to really eat anything. Although he definitely made some time for some strawberry and banana pie! ;) I was so full from our first meal of the day that I didn't really eat much at the second stop -- which was probably a good thing :)

On Friday after Thanksgiving, we woke up pretty early. This has always been the day that my family has put up our Christmas tree and decorations so I definitely wanted to stick with tradition this year. I was SO excited to decorate my own house for the first time. Cody had been saying for weeks that he didn't really feel like having to put up outside lights (bah humbug) -- but by Friday he'd agreed so we set out around 8:30 in the morning to pick up some essentials. We stopped by Toys R Us first to see if we could find any good deals on Christmas presents for Jaden. After picking up a couple of things there, we went to Target and got all of our lights for our tree as well as our outdoor lights. I also picked out a shelf piece for our living room so that I would have more places to put out decor. Once we got home Cody headed outside to put the lights on the front of the house, and Jaden and I played outside for a little while also. When Jaden went down for his nap, Cody went and got our new tree from my parents' house. My parents got a new one last year, but the one they had been using was in storage this whole time -- and is an awesome tree. I absolutely love it, and we are so lucky that we get to call it our own now. After a few mis-haps (couldn't find the tree stand and had picked up non-matching lights from Target) -- we had everything we needed to start decorating. We also completely rearranged our living room to fit the tree in the best possible spot for it, and now we think we're going to keep our furniture like this all the time. We finished decorating right at about 5:00 and then headed to downtown CF with my parents to eat some supper at Toad's. Our downtown area was hosting its first ever "Holiday Hoopla" -- and they had a GREAT turn out, and this is definitely a tradition I hope to keep every year -- especially as the kids get a little older. They had a live nativity scene with real animals and a real baby playing Jesus. Santa's Workshop on one corner that is awesomely decorated. They had live entertainment outside with instrument players and a big stage set up for live singers singing Christmas music. They had a lighting of a special Christmas tree, Santa made his grand entrance off the top of a building and then they had fireworks. They also had characters walking the streets as snowmen and elves and reindeer handing out goodies to kids. We didn't stay for the fireworks because Jaden was too young yet to be patient and wait for them - and it was cold. But it was such an awesome event with thousands of people and a really cozy small-town Christmas feel. We got Jaden home and enjoyed sitting cozily by our fabulous tree.
Here is a picture of our tree and four stockings and the new shelf I got from Target that day. You can't really get a good idea of how neat and real looking the tree is... but we love it :)

Some more of our decorations. I hope to add to our Precious Moments Nativity over time. Cody's mom got me the beginning pieces of the set for my birthday (which is a week before Christmas) my senior year of college shortly after Cody and I started dating. I'd love to have the whole set one day. I can't wait to go out after Christmas this year and see what kind of decorations I can find on sale so that I can add more and more Christmas decor to our house every year. This seriously is my favorite time of the year!!

On Saturday we spent a LOT of time outside. After Cody had hung up the lights on the front of the house, we had a few boxes left. He woke up Saturday morning and had gotten really into the spirit of things ;) So he decided to hang lights up on the back part of our roof as well as all the way around our back deck and up the stair rails. Since we live on a corner lot with a street that goes behind our house, this part of our house gets seen just as much as the front of our house. I'm so grateful to him -- he worked so hard that weekend on making everything look nice and he got just as into it as I did. Our first Christmas in our first home has already been a special one :) Jaden enjoyed the weather outside that day -- it was beautiful out, and he didn't even need to wear his hat. He did a great job of running around, throwing his balls all over the place. At one point when I was sweeping up the driveway and Cody was on the ladder, Jaden took it upon himself to climb the steps of our deck, open the back door and go inside all by himself. I asked Cody, "What's he doing?" Cody told me to give him a minute and sure enough, a minute later Jaden walked back outside by himself carrying one of his footballs. Such a grown up moment for him to decide to do this all on his own without even saying anything! After his nap on Saturday we took Jaden to the park, and he played on all of the slides. The big long slide - the twisty slide - all of them. He had a ball. Cody would wait for him at the top of the play equipment and Jaden would race up there giggling and smiling and shrieking the whole way. I would wait for him at the bottom of the slides to catch him. We've decided we're going to use that park a lot this coming spring and summer to have cookouts, etc.

We ended our weekend Sunday by having a pretty laid-back day. Jaden did get a little crabby that day. I think he was worn out from such a busy weekend and was missing his friends at daycare a little bit :) Cody's parents came over that night and helped measure the walls of the baby's room because Cody's dad is going to put up a chair rail in there for us. We also tested out our two paint colors in the nursery and I loved them both! Next step is to paint the whole room so we can get the chair rail up. Jaden's bed has been ordered and we should have it by January 7th. He also has a new dresser coming. In January we will move the crib and the baby's dresser into the third bedroom and start decorating for the baby! Finally our third bedroom will be all ready to go after not using it since moving in last spring!

I think that's a long enough update! Merry Christmas from the Ubben family -- we hope you are all enjoying your Christmas season :)