Monday, December 28, 2020

CHRISTMAS 2020 - PART 1 was everyone's Christmas?! I hope it was as wonderful as it could be for 2020. I sure am looking forward to the day when "mask", "Covid" and "social distance" are no longer terms we hear 100 times a day. I am praying for a better, brighter, and safer world for 2021 as I'm sure you all are. 

We typically have a big ole family gathering a few days before or after Christmas back in Texarkana, TX (my hometown) with my grandfather and allllll the cousins, second cousins, third cousins, aunts, uncles, and whoever else I missed. This year, we canceled that because of Covid so instead, we decided to do something fun locally that we've never done before.

So here's Part 1 of our Christmas week! I'll recap our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the next post. :)

We have so many friends who drive out to the Gaylord Texan Resort in Dallas (about 40 minutes from our house) for their Christmas events each year but we've never been. One of my best friends growing up who also ended up being my college roomie and sorority sister was going to be in town with her family. They were staying at the Great Wolf Lodge across the street so we decided to meet up with them last Tuesday at the Gaylord to check things out.

And before anyone asks, yes, masks were required the whole time, inside and out except to take quick pictures (the guy working there told us it was fine) and if we were seated in the dining areas. 

The atrium was absolutely beautiful with lights hanging from the glass ceiling, a giant tree, the Polar Express train, a was all just so pretty!

One of the people working there asked if we wanted them to take our picture and I jumped at the chance. We don't get a lot of family shots.

We headed straight for the Christmas Village to check out all the fun activities. But the boys saw an escalator and had to take a turn. Pretty sure we could have just done this the whole time and they'd have been happy. 😂

We hit up snowtubing first. I honestly thought the boys would be so pumped about this. But they each went down twice and were over it. The line was long and they just didn't want to wait. Ugh. Definitely not worth the money I paid for that! Next time we'll go when it's a little less crowded.

Next up was ice skating. My kids are not ice skaters, y'all. Mason went to an ice skating birthday party about 5 years ago and it was adorable watching a little 5yo slip and slide all over the rink. Matthew has NEVER been. So I knew this would be funny and it absolutely was. It was like watching a baby deer learn to walk for both of them. Both of their personalities came out though as they attempted this. Matthew (my oldest) was slow (verryyyy slow), cautious, and careful. He stayed close to the wall the whole time and made sure to stay out of people's way.

Mason on the other hand was gung-ho from the start! He had no clue what he was doing but he put himself right in the middle of everyone and was determined to figure it out. He had no fear about falling, picking up speed or looking like a fool. 😂

I was able to get more pictures of Mason because he went around the rink several times while Matthew finally made it around once and then was done. 🤣 We were proud of him for at least trying it! He's not one to go out of his comfort zone (he gets it from his mama) but he went for it and now he can say he's been ice skating.

While the boys were skating, our friends arrived! Jessica and her husband, Stephen have two sweet littles (Ava, 18mo and Luke 2yo). So we were working around naptimes, mealtimes, meltdowns, many things I haven't had to deal with for a decade! Totally took me back. Luke was attached to his mama but sweet Ava (who I've only seen once when she was just 3 months old) was my little buddy immediately. Want to know a little secret? I always get a little sappy and "What would it have been like to have a daughter?" when I get to love on a sweet baby girl. This was no different. Ava was the most precious little thing and she had no problem letting me carry her around. ❤

After the boys finished up, we wandered around and a giant nutcracker on stilts said he'd take our picture in front of yet another giant tree. And how often does that happen? 😂 

At one point, I had to put Ava down because she's a cutie but she's also heavy. 😂 My left bicep was sore for days after this by the way! haha So I put her down so she could walk for a minute and held her tiny little hand. She had a firm grip on my fingers and my tweenage boy mama heart just about burst with baby girl joy. Matthew and Mason were walking behind/beside her like little bodyguards too. #precious

We left the crazy Christmas Village in search of coffee. Mason perched himself here to look out at the fountain and try to recreate school pictures circa 1996.

It was so good getting to see my sweet friend and her family!! We didn't get to catch up for long because the kids were on a schedule (I remember those days!) and needed to eat dinner so we got a quick picture and said goodbye. We had a reservation for our last activity at 5:45 so we headed there while they went to eat.

Our final stop was the Yuletide Bright display. It was an outdoor exhibit of lights that you can walk through and honestly, I thought it was just ok for the money we paid. But we made the most of it and enjoyed the experience. I'm pretty sure the boys enjoyed their snowcones and a rowdy game of tag more though.

We had to walk back through the atrium to get to our car and I'm so glad I got to see this place at night! It was gorgeous!! Overall, I'm glad we went but we probably won't do it again. It was something fun and different to do though since we have gone absolutely nowhere as a family this year. I am hoping 2021 gets us moving again!!

So that was Tuesday. Wednesday, I was making sure I had all the things I needed for our Christmas Day lunch since my parents and brother were coming in. I needed to finish wrapping gifts, I needed to clean...I just needed to do all the last minute things so that I could enjoy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. 

Charlie had other ideas.

This little bow thief has been stealign bows left and right off the gifts and at one point on Wednesday, I caught him running through the living room with a bow in his mouth. I tried to catch him but realized I needed a trade. I grabbed a Greenie (his favorite) and got him to sit. And then I noticed the piece of tape stuck to his face. 🤣🤣🤣 But at least he dropped the bow and I was able to swipe the tape too.

A little while later, I come into check on him because I was hearing noises coming from this room. I found him sitting on his favorite chair (he loves to sit there in the sun and look out the window). And then I saw this. 

He'd tried to take off the bow to this one too but that lead to more... Sigh. This pillow was one of Craig's gifts and he wasn't home so I was able to wrap it back up before he saw. But dang, Chuck! Thankfully, this was the only present he ripped into the whole month so I'll call that a win!

After I got all my chores done, it was time to relax and enjoy the final days of the Christmas season. Matthew, Charlie, and I watched a movie on the couch and I had to snap a picture of the way Charlie was staring at Matthew. Charlie LOVES Matthew. They have a very sweet little bond.

 Come back tomorrow for Part 2 - Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!

Happy Monday, friends!



  1. sweet post Amanda. love the part about the little girl. you have a very sweet heart.💗

  2. Love all this! The Gaylord is beautiful! Amanda, you still have time to have your baby girl! I had a baby over 40.


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