This is a long one, folks. That's what happens when you don't blog all through the Christmas season.
Let's talk about our tree. We had dreams of going to cut down our own tree on a snowy afternoon but, alas, no snow (um, yay!) and no time. So, instead, we ended up with a free tree from a shopping center parking lot. Free tree: I'll call that a win for Team Procrastinate.
The Sunday before Christmas we drove into Cambridge to do our "family" holiday dinner with the Boston crew. We hit up Alden & Harlow and together we took down a large part of the (very delicious) menu. Afterward, Taras and I grabbed cupcakes for the babysitting grandmas and coffees to go for ourselves from Crema Cafe (one of our favorites). Side note: bringing home dessert to the grandparents has become almost a tradition at this point. This time, however, it was more of a peace-offering + apology for what ended up being an intense night of "feed the baby the bottle." One grandma even had to call in reinforcement from the other grandma. So, yeah.
Caleb met Santa! And The Senator SMILED. Taras can take complete credit for this picture - he worked hard to get that little man to look in the right direction + smile at the same time (no small feat!).
The best Christmas card helper around.
We went to Christmas Eve service at our church and it was amazing. Seriously, everyone needs to come with us next year! We had to wait around for the second experience because the first one was packed to the brim. So Caleb played behind the wheel while we waited. And then he fell asleep and, courtesy of his snazzy headphones, stayed asleep through the awesome drum session. After church, we picked up my brother from the bus station, grabbed some Chinese takeout, put Caleb to bed, then us adults drank beer and decorated the Christmas tree with mis-matched lights and old ornaments from our childhood.
My parents joined us at our (new!) house the next morning. My momma showed Caleb the tree - it wasn't even in the room when he went to bed the night before. We opened gifts together and, seriously, having kids makes this part so fun! My mom wrapped Caleb's gifts in tissue paper, so he could easily open his packages - he did so good, and even let me put reindeer antlers on him. :) And I pinched myself a couple times (figuratively) because I couldn't believe we were able to move in and unpack (or hide...) boxes in time to have Christmas in our home. It's crazy to think that at this time last year we were just sharing news of my pregnancy with our families - and now we have a five month old!
My mom and brother cooked us an amazing Christmas lunch. I set the table (it's my favorite part). And Caleb woke up from his nap just in time for lunch, so we rewarded him with his first taste of real food: sweet potato. We're not *really* starting solids yet, but that boy loves watching us eat and it was a holiday, so a few licks of sweet potato seemed like a good gift for him. He seemed confused about the texture and sensation of it all, but I think he liked it!
Post-lunch naps and playtime.
Later that afternoon, the rest of the family came over for dessert (thanks for doing all the baking, mom!), snacks, and drinks. We are so thankful to have spent Christmas with the whole family, and in our home. Also, I wanna give a shout-out to the Christmas Fireplace on Hulu - we put it on the TV and it made the house super cozy.
The next day was super chill. Uncle Scott got in some more hang-out time with Caleb before his bus back to NYC. And, Scott, next time you see Caleb he'll be expecting some gourmet baby food. :)
Then Taras and I went for a walk around our new neighborhood and into downtown. I'm so, so happy we can walk to places again. And the weather we had this Christmas? It was the glowing star on top of the Christmas tree for this Florida girl.
If you made it this far, hooray + thanks for reading! We hope you are all having the best holiday season. We're feeling all the warm and fuzzies over here, for sure.