Monday, December 26, 2011

Advent/Christmas

Here's a rundown of what we did for our December 2011 holidays

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Advent
Books the kids read:

Holly, Reindeer, and Colored Lights The Story of the Christmas Symbols




Read-Alouds:

A child's Christmas in Wales


Christmas Poems - we took turns reading poems from this on several nights


The Kingfisher Book of Classic Christmas Stories - we took turns reading the stories from this, so everyone got in on the story-telling


Miracle on 34th Street


Saint Francis and the Nativity


The Real Santa Claus


The Berenstain Bears' Christmas Tree


The Christmas Story: From the Gospels of Matthew and Luke - this one has the text from the Bible paired with gorgeous pictures from the Metropolitan Museum of Art


The Christmas Story


The Gift of the Magi and Other Stories - our library didn't have any other copies of The Gift of the Magi, so we got this book just to read that story


A Wreath of Christmas Poems - this is a rather old issue (1942) from a monthly publication 'Poet of the Month'


Elf Elementary






Movies/Shows:

How the Grinch Stole Christmas!




Frosty the Snowman





Movies/Shows for just hubby and me:

Jeff Dunham's Very Special Christmas Special

Love Actually


Activities:
Drive around town looking at lights & decorations
Go to the 'Festival of Lights,' a light display our city does each year


Hanukkah
We decided to pick up a few Hanukkah books to read. Dea is currently studying Judaism, to determine if that is the religion she would like to follow. So, we figured it would be a good idea to learn about Hanukkah.
A Confused Hanukkah


In the Month of Kislev


Eight Wild Nights


Hanukkah, Shmanukkah!


The Story of Hanukkah

Eight Winter Nights: A family Hanukkah Book




Christmas
Presents:
Dea: The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook;  Pail of Primates symbolic adoption from WWF
Jay: Arabian Nights; Tub of Cubs symbolic adoption from WWF
Hubby: the beginnings of a beautiful Nativity Set (Fontanini, hand-painted, imported from Italy); a Sea Otter symbolic adoption from WWF
Me: a meat slicer; a Grey Wolf symbolic adoption from WWF; a wolf picture
Family gifts: Bezzerwizzer, Rummikub, Blokus

Food: mini turkey meatballs in cranberry bbq sauce, latkes, homemade artisan bread, bagel balls, pork loin stuffed with mushrooms, spinach, & Feta, peanut butter blossom cookies, mini phyllo cups with filling of cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, crab meat, pepper, and dill topped with shrimp, mini phyllo cups with filling of cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, vanilla, mint, & cinnamon topped with fruit (pineapple, mandarin oranges, cherries), and a cheese tray

Fun: I hid the plush animals, from out adoptions, around the house, and we went on a safari to find them all. Much of the day was spent playing our new games. We watched How the Grinch Stole Christmas, again, and listened to Christmas music. It was a fun, relaxing day. We ended the day by having my sister & brother-in-law come over for an evening of playing cards.

Jay's birthday
We do the bulk of his birthday celebration in February, on the anniversary of the day he finally came home from the hospital. He was 12 weeks early, and spent about 2 months in NICU before he came home. We like to do something on his birthday to celebrate, but due to it's proximity to the holidays, it's easier to do the bigger celebration in February (more affordable, too). He got to choose dinner for his birthday. He choose the Chinese restaurant we went to during his study of Ancient China. He got to stay up late and watch a movie on his birthday.

As you can see, December has been a busy month for us. I hope your holiday was as enjoyable.