It's been a great break... but one that was too long and too short. We had a blast welcoming "Santa" and the New Year with all our family and friends. Now that winter break is over (and I am secretly jumping for joy), I want to reflect on all the cool and neat things we did as a family, all the while we wish deep in our hearts we could have shared these holidays and adventures with our daughter. Next year - we hope.
Besides for putting out cookies for Santa, reindeer food for Rudolph (specially made just for him!), we made our special trip out to the Cuneo Museum to see the Winter Wonderland in Vernon Hills. We make this trip every year - and it's cheap too. You drive through wonders of lights in the coziness of your car, listening to holiday tunes. Point out and count the snowmen - don't miss any! We always have a blast trying to remember the 12 days of Christmas, as they outline them in lights... the creators also bring back every Disney character known to man. It truly is an adventure one must see.
We traveled to our families houses, celebrating Christmas Eve and Day. Opening presents, watching the children play and eating food until you're stuffed. I truly know how much it takes out of you to wrap, pack and go here and there during the holidays - and I give my mom more credit every year. How she did it with 4 kids I will never know. The hustle and bustle of the holiday's is all worth it when you see the twinkle in the children's eye.
Hayden had probably the best Christmas yet, and the pictures will prove it. Santa brought him a Wii. In addition, "Santa" was able to make Hayden a scarf (as they are hard to find for young boys). This was an item Hayden had on his list, but figured it would be forgotten. When he pulled it out of the gift bag - he was tickled pink and thrilled. It made me soooo proud. He also got several games, Star Wars stuff, Legos (thanks Michele!!!) and his Polar Express train (that's what we call it, though it's just a train that goes around the tree).
One afternoon during break I came downstairs after doing something... There was a note on my purse. I knew Hayden's scribbles, it was from him. I asked Michael and Hayden what it said, and Michael replied it was Hayden's idea - he wanted to write Santa a thank-you card for remembering everything on his Christmas list. I could have cried.
With Christmas gone, comes New Years. For the past several years we have had the comfort and convenience of being invited to our neighbors for dinner, etc. Since they live next door and have kids it makes New Years for families a win win situation. Hayden spent the majority of the evening playing with the children, and us adults enjoyed the company of other neighbors and couples. Hayden ended up passing out around 1:30ish and we left shortly after, making the brisk walk home the only setback. Well, maybe there was a tiny bit of a grouchy Hayden when he climbed into bed. But - to be expected.
This past weekend, we hung out at LegoLand in Schaumburg. Since Santa brought Hayden Lego's, what a better place to visit? We spent a couple hours touring, watching a VERY cool 4-D movie and drooling over R2D2. They can practically turn anything into a Lego design. Of course, the visit wouldn't be complete with out making some of your own - and then visiting the gift shop. LOL Hayden had some "Santa Cash" and spent it wisely - he bought a Lego car design set that he is getting a kick out of. Unfortunately, this outing was quite pricey and being a parent, didn't see it to be worth the dough. Hayden enjoyed it though and it was a nice close to the break.
Though there were days when I had gone absoluty mad, days I had locked myself in the bedroom and wished it were summer (so someone could ride their bike and wear off their energy!)... we had fun. We had play dates, went to therapy (and that helped some with the high running engines!), I wouldn't trade it for the world.
My boy is growing up - fast. Want proof? For weeks Hayden has been telling me a tooth was loose. I would check and sure enough, someone cried wolf. I think someone at school recently lost their tooth, that's why all the craze. So during break, Hayden mentions it again... Michael was off on an errand. This time, I figure... eh, Hayden is pulling my chain again - but I look and see something really IS moving. I take a closer look and would you believe it! My son has a loose tooth! Don't I feel like a dork!
So thank you Santa for all the gifts that you brought Hayden that were on his list ;)
Thank you for giving Hayden a loose tooth. Thank you for giving us a fantastic year, keeping us safe, warm and protected. Here's to a New Year... one with an addition to our family.