Elf Adventures 5

The last days of our elf on the shelf Gusgus for 2017. This week I had lots of fun. (be sure to read at the bottom about our year and why I do this tradition)

Gusgus decided to take 2 dry erase markers and write on the bathroom mirror. "Merry Christmas" and "Ho Ho Ho ❤️GusGus"

The Kitchen needed a little decorating.

Gusgus is all wrapped up.

Just hanging around with some friends!!!!!

Gusgus is such a wild one hanging upside down swinging from a swing.

Ella- "Gusgus what are you doing in the fridge? Daddy wants orange juice"

Gusgus riding a trolley dreaming he was at Disney World.

Where's Gusgus??

Gusgus' letter goodbye. He's heading home tonight to help Santa on his special trip to bring presents to us tonight!!!! (Santa came on the 26th since we didn't have Ella on Christmas morning) 

Christmas is finally over. Gusgus has went back to the North Pole with Santa until next year. We had a fun year. I have to give myself a pat on the back for remembering to help Gusgus move to a new location each night, well each night that Ella was here. If I only had Austin I did slack. We did a lot more fun places instead of him just sitting somewhere (like hanging upside down on a swing, and zip lining. It was fun while it lasted, but I am honestly glad it is over. One less thing to stress about every day. Can't wait until next year. 

A friend asked me the other day why I participate in the "Trend" of Elf on the Shelf? I honestly bought the Elf kit the year Ella was born. I loved the idea of a fun tradition to do with her. Then I got separated by the next Christmas and was living at my parents house. I started the tradition as something fun to remember the holiday's by, I have continued doing this tradition seeing the joy and excitement she has every morning when she wakes up (or comes home) and starts looking for her Elf. It maybe a hassle and annoying to some but to us it is a fun tradition that brings us joy, excitement and great memories. 

If you missed here is the arrival of Gusgus and his North Pole BreakfastElf Adventures 1, Elf Adventures 2Elf Adventures 3, and Elf Adventures 4.

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Christmas Celebrations

It's hard to believe that after all the craziness of making lists, shopping, baking, cooking, wrapping, more shopping... Christmas is over. We had a fun three days of Christmas Celebrations. Now we get to enjoy all our gifts and clean everything up. But first lets take a look back at the last few days.

Saturday Brian had to do all the wrapping. He enjoys it, and I do not. (I did wrap his presents). He wrapped while enjoying beer in his new frosted beer stein he got for his birthday and listening to Christmas music while Austin and I slept. 

Brian was up past 2am wrapping presents and decided to take a nap before all the Christmas Eve fun festivities. Austin was so adorable and loving on him. He laid there and hugged him for a good 20 minutes. 

My wish came true and we got a White Christmas this year, and then some more. 

Christmas Eve started at my parents house for our traditional lasagna dinner that we have had since I can remember. After dinner we went to Brian's nieces house to see his dad's side of the family. We do a fun white elephant and ornament exchange. It is always a lot of fun with great laughs. This year was eventful with four dogs running around (Brian is highly allergic), Austin getting bitten by one of the dogs (luckily it didn't break skin and he is fine) and a blizzard of snow when we went that night. 

Christmas morning we slept in, we were lazy, and had lots of cuddles. We made special arrangements for Santa to come on the 26th when I would have Ella. I got Ella back to noon so we just watched movies and played until then.

Our first stop was my cousins for our extended family Christmas. 

We stayed for the kids to open presents, eat dinner, and then we were off to our next stop. 

Stop #2 was to Brian's parents house for Christmas with his immediate family. We were all extremely spoiled and so grateful for everything we got. Austin is over-loaded and over-joyed with all his trucks.

Lastly on Christmas Day we stayed at Brian's parents house but his mom's side of the family came over and we did another white elephant gift exchange. Then we headed home to prepare for Santa's arrival.

As an early Christmas present Brian got us a new tree skirt, the Mickey and Minnie Mouse sledding from the Disney Store I had been eyeballing. 

Cookies and milk were put out for Santa.

I heard something in the living room and went to go check. I saw Santa sneaking out the front door. (we don't have a fireplace) 

Our Christmas morning was lots of fun. Austin loves all his trucks and duplo legos. 

Ella got a Trolls Microphone with amp from Santa. It has already been taken away once for her using it to call me from the other room instead of getting up to tell me what she needed. 

Yesterday afternoon my immediate family came over for the last of our Christmas celebrating. We had a delicious steak dinner then opened presents. Here is my mom and Ella being goofy. We were again spoiled and so thankful for everything we got. More than we could have ever expected. 

We ended the night cuddling watching one of Ella's new movies and falling asleep in her bed. (Brian and Austin were in the living room watching something else).

Today is back to reality. Which really has meant we have spent most of the day playing with our new toys. Reality will happen after the new year when Ella is back in school.

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Friday Favorites- Christmas Ornaments

Happy Friday. I have been MIA a little this week. My kids got a stomach bug that required lots of cuddles, movie time, and I wasn't on my laptop very little. I can't believe that Christmas is 3 days away. I still have so much to do including all my wrapping, and a little shopping. I am not crazy enough to take 2 kids shopping by myself 3 days before Christmas, I will have to wait until dad gets home. 

In the spirit of Christmas I am sharing a few of my favorite ornaments on our tree today for Friday Favorites. I am joining in with ErikaNarci, and Andrea for their weekly link-up.

I would love to have a tree that is themed. All one color, or all Disney, don't touch kind of tree. That is not going to happen with two little ones running around. We have a thrown together so many memories Christmas tree. Maybe if we get a bigger house one day I will have two trees. 

This ornament my aunt had personalized for me in 1991. Even though my name was spelled wrong, it was the thought that counts. On the other side you stick a bulb in a window and it lights up the whole house. 

I love classic Mickey and Minnie kissing. Brian bought this for me in 2015

 Brian took me to Disney World for the first time since I was 2 in 2015. I have completely fallen in love with everything Disney.

2015 the year Austin was born. (I can't find the ornament for when Aubriella was born)

Not only do I have a Disney obsession, I also love Frogs. This is one of my many frogs on my tree.

There are at least 10 Dunkin Donuts on our tree. Brian managed a location for about 10 years and i worked at one for 6 years. We have some great memories there. 

10 years ago I met these amazing women, we were all getting married around the same time. We started off as Internet friends, then turned into real life friends. We watched our marriages grow and some crumble, watching each other have kids, while others struggle, and supported each other through good times and bad times. Unfortunately I grew apart from these ladies when my marriage crumbled but they will always have a place in my heart and on my tree. 

Back in 2010 I participated in a ornament exchange with a bunch of other bloggers. This is one of the ornaments I got in the exchange. So many great memories of blogging over the years. 

Do you have a Memories Tree or a Theme Tree or Both?

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Tuesday Talk- Christmas Q & A

Happy Tuesday. It is the last day of school for Ella, tomorrow starts her Holiday break. This afternoon she has her Holiday party at school, which I get to help with again. We also have our Girl Scouts meeting tonight with lots of games and fun planned. Tomorrow we will be sleeping in, baking cookies, watching movies, all the fun stuff. 
Today is Tuesday Talk with Ashley and Erika. Today I am taking it easy and just going to do a little Q and A that The Blended Blog posted a few weeks ago. I meant to already post this but back pain and sickness has messed up a lot of things already this month. 

1. Real or Fake Tree? Fake. I am allergic to real ones and hate being broken out in a rash. I thought of getting a real one and dealing with it, then I went to my moms and saw all the pine needles already everywhere. I'm good, I will stick with my fake tree.

2. Favorite Christmas Cookie? M&M and Chocolate Chip cookies, not really Christmasy but I love anything with chocolate

3. Home on Christmas Morning or Travel? Always wake up at home, but do spend a lot of the day traveling. I would love to find a way to change this and be home and everyone come to us. I hate being on the go and the kids not being able to play with their brand new toys.

4. Clear or Colored Lights? I am about colored lights. Our fake tree this year is pre-light and you can do white or colored so we go back and forth because Brian likes white lights. 

5. Send Christmas Cards? No, I say I am going to make family photo cards every year and never get around to it.

6. Favorite Christmas Present Received? Gosh this is a hard one. I would have to say the last two years my mom has given me plates with my kids hand prints. It is the little things that are more meaningful than anything materialistic. 

7. Favorite Christmas Present Given? Brian and I found out we were pregnant around Thanksgiving 3 years ago. That year for an early Christmas present we gave our mom's a framed ultrasound picture.

8. Stockings or No Stockings? Stockings 

9. Christmas PJ's? Yes, we have matching Disney plaid Mickey and Minnie PJ's we wear each year. (i bought Ella's a few sizes too big so it would fit for a while, I did the same for Austin this year)

10. Favorite Christmas Carol? Carol of the Bells, memories of choir in high school

11. Favorite Holiday Tradition? I love the little things we do as a family: driving around to look at lights, going to see Santa (even if they cry), cuddling on the couch watching Christmas movie

12. Early Shopper or Last Minute? Early shopper, atleast this year. Both kids were done by December 1st. 

13. Favorite Christmas Movie or Show? The Grinch with Jim Carrey

14. Favorite Holiday Beverage? Peppermint Mocha everything

15. Cookies and Milk for Santa? Yes always

What are some of your favorites of Christmas?

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Hair, Friends, Santa. and Family

Happy Monday!!! We have had another jam packed, fun, and eventful filled weekend. Only a 2 day school week for Ella, with today being PJ day and watching the Polar Express, tomorrow is her Holiday party, and tomorrow night we have Girl Scouts. Then we have the calm before the storm of Christmas. We are still fighting sickness in my house, I am ready for it to all be gone so we can enjoy our Christmas Break. 

Friday one of my girlfriends asked if I would do her hair for her work Christmas party. We had to do it on her break from work because there wouldn't be enough time after work, school, and before her party and Ella's Girl Scout event.

At times I miss doing hair, but then I get friends who ask for their hair done, or my family who wants haircuts (Brian and Austin need theirs cut before Christmas) and that urge goes away.

Friday evening we had a fun Girl Scout event. It was a cookie rally where the girls did some crafts, learned about selling cookies, and got to try all the cookies and pick their favorite.

The girls favorite craft was doing the scratch turtle and making their own designs. 

Saturday morning I woke up before everyone and enjoyed some hot water with honey, quiet time, and watched a Christmas movie. Last week I woke up early quiet a few times and enjoyed it. I really want to get back into the habit of getting things done early before anyone wakes up.

Saturday we had lunch with Santa at my parents local AmVets. All the cousins were there dressed up and excited to see Santa. 

Here's my handsome little man coloring, eating bread, and drinking some juice as he waits for Santa. 

My sister, father, and myself. 

Here are all the cousins. (I didn't take the picture and can't figure out how to rid of the black box).

Austin will point out Santa and say Santa, but when it comes to going up to him, that is another story. He wants nothing to do with him.

Ella has always been good with Santa. She knows he brings her presents. 

Saturday night we planned to drive around and look at Christmas lights. Ella really wanted nothing to do with it. Instead she decided to take a nap in the backseat. One day she will share my love of all things Christmas.

After looking at Christmas lights we came home and had a family movie night. We watched the Grinch. 

I almost forgot. Ella and Brian made her Chocolate Cookie Train. It turned out really cute. 

Sunday morning I finally took myself to the Express Care Clinic for what I knew was a sinus infection. It turned out to be a Severe Sinus Infection since I waited so long. I had been dealing with it for about a month and just kept waiting for it to get better.

Ella and Austin got a long so well yesterday. Ella was a little mommy playing and watching Austin since I wasn't feeling well and daddy had to work. She ended up calling my mom when she found me crying holding my head cause I was in so much pain from the sinus pressure. My mom came to the rescue and watched the kids while I napped. Brian got my meds and I am finally starting to feel better. 
We ended our weekend watching the new Disney short- Olaf's Frozen Adventure. It was really cute, Ella said it wasn't long enough. 

Hope you had a great weekend. I am linking up with some great gals for Hello MondayWeekendersWeekly Wrap Up, and Hello Monday!!!!!

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