Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Feliz Taco Tuesday

It had to happen.  Jingle Bells knew it was Taco Tuesday, and the last one before Christmas.  With this in mind, he dressed Snowflake aspiñata, hung up a strand of red pepper lights, got the small sombrero out and dived into a taco shell, covering himself with strands of paper lettuce.  This might be Madison's favorite elf appearance yet, as we could hear her from upstairs when she first discovered him on the kitchen counter.  You see, each morning she spends a bit of time looking around while Mommy and Daddy are just waking up.  She opens a gift she gets, and the little door on her advent calendar, while pulling one more link off the chain on the wall.  Only a few more days until Christmas!

Today was fun.  We made a village of gingerbread!  

There's a kit out there, one that lets you build a village of smaller houses, versus making one big house.  We've already made one larger gingerbread house this year, so this village - one the elf brought yesterday - was a new thing to try out.  

We had all kinds of Christmas movies playing, from "Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas" and others, all while decorating our small-sized gingerbread houses.  It was something different, and easier - instead of sharing one house, we each had our own little ones to customize.

This is a tradition that goes back to the very first Christmas we were with Madison, and we've been enjoying it ever since.  This year, we've now created six gingerbread houses though.  There were those two last month for KidPak (and one of ours was actually used as a prop in the "Wrapping All the Way" play in the main sanctuary!).  And now these four as well.

It takes a village.  Madison did this last one, which appears to be nothing but roof.  The sides look like those candy dot strips of paper, or perhaps something you can ski off of.  The house structure actually reminds me of those old KOA campground hubs, the first building you see when you're pulling up to a KOA campground.  Do they even still have KOA campgrounds?  We'll have to look that up.  We used to go camping with our grandparents at these all the time, all across the country.  I remember seeing a Laurel and Hardie movie at one on a big outdoor screen in Colorado.  Another, I remember swimming at a pool in, on the Fourth of July - in Canada.  Random thoughts just popping into the mind.  

Anyway, we spent a good deal of time making these tonight, each focusing on the tiny details of each house while watching a few movies.  Madison really enjoys making these, and eating the excess icing and gumdrops and candy canes and candy balls and peppermint discs and... well, you get the idea.  

It was the last day of school for Madison in 2016.  She saw "The Polar Express" again at school, but did do some math assignments, and a few other things.  She had a great day of course, as I expect all the kids were excited about Winter Break.  The teachers are probably excited about it too!

No piano today, and Daddy skipped the staff Christmas party tonight, as it was held at an Italian restaurant.  Let's just say that food and Daddy are having a hard time getting along right now.  I'm getting better, but it's a process that I'll have to be more patient with!  As you might suspect, the very idea of Taco Tuesday is something Daddy will have to wait on for quite some time.  It looks great... but we'd better wait on that one.

Madison's winter break starts tomorrow, and she's excited.  She gets to go to KidPak, which is a big deal for her - she can't wait for that.  Obviously, Christmas is just around the corner, and that's a big deal too.  Nana dropped by today with some oranges, and it was nice to see her.  We'll see more of her this weekend, especially when we drop by for Christmas Eve, and then Christmas.  The weather is supposed to be rather warm on Christmas Day, which cancels out the need to have a nice cozy fire in the fire place.  We may have one anyway, just to protest!  Yes, the only snow we'll probably have is the icing you see on these gingerbread houses!

Still, it's a wonderful season.  We're enjoying it, although it always goes by so quickly.  We're glad we put the trees up so early.  To think, we actually started doing that on Halloween!  It doesn't seem so long ago.  But that's because we've been so busy.  Next week, we'll all get to slow down quite a bit - it's a great time to sit and play with all the new toys.  This week, we're still going, going, going.  Lots to do before the big day, but we've got a lot done thus far, including several hours of wrapping already done.  So we're doing well.  It's just that this season gets you moving a lot.  Add to that some packing for an upcoming trip, plus a few Nativity scenes and a Christmas play, the Nutcracker and surgery... and you can see why it's been a fairly busy season.  But again, it's been magical for Madison.  She loves getting the stencil books in the morning under the tree, and seeing what the elf is up to.  The Christmas lights in our neighborhood are beautiful, and she's singing along with so many of the Christmas songs on the radio.  She's making lots of jokes, and talking a whole lot, and smiling a lot too.  It's a most wonderful time of the year for her.  Okay, and for us too!

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