Merry Christmas!!!

We had a very nice Christmas this year. Scott got an electric beard trimmer and I got a little TV for the bedroom. I’d been fighting it for the last 13 years saying it would interfere with my sleep at night, but I also needed a quiet place to shut the door and watch some TV once in a while. We opted not to record Damien opening his Christmas presents this year, but I took pictures.

On Christmas Eve, Damien with his new Christmas pillow
Trying out Damien’s new board game, Splendor. It was pretty fun!
All the presents under the tree ready for Christmas morning
Damien opening a gem dig kit
Maybe he’ll find gold!
A watch that also tracks steps/movement
Let’s Go Pikachu video game for the Switch
Opening up a NERF gun
He got TWO NERF guns! Now Scott and Damien can shot each other
Opening a gold squishy ball kit
A Pikachu carrying case for his Switch
Getting more gifts!
So wild!
The new Mario Party for the Switch
Perler beads. I’m excited to use this gift! Damien is sticking tape to his face…
A decorative screen protector for the Switch. Definitely needs this!
A sparkly gold bath bomb
A graphic novel
Monopoly chocolates
A strategy guide for the Let’s Go Pikachu game
A Kinex roller coaster construction set
All the presents from Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. If it wasn’t posted above, it’s because the picture was too blurry.

Here’s the breakdown for gifts:

  • From Grandpa and Grandma Hanks: Light-up snowman pillow and Splendor board game
  • From Great Grandma and Tom: Activity watch, gold squishy ball kit and gold bath bomb (as of this post he’s used the bath bomb and loved it!)
  • From Grandpa Whitehill: Kinex roller coaster set, NERF guns and ammo, Mario Party game
  • From Great Grampy and Great Grammy Whitehill: Perler beads, Switch carry case, Switch screen protector, and Monopoly chocolates
  • From Mom and Dad: Headphones, graphic novel, gem dig kit, Let’s Go Pikachu game with pokeball and strategy guide

Thank you so much for everyone who sent gifts/money for Christmas this year. Not only were we able to get Damien and ourselves some very nice items, but we also went to Christmas Town (which turns out is not free entry for military like it is during the summer). So thank you!

For Christmas dinner, we made a couple of casseroles and went over to the Millikens’ house who provided an excellent meal. They prepared one of their backyard-raised turkeys with stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, two types of pies…EVERYTHING was so good! It was nice to spend time with family and catch up.

From Uncle Robbie and Aunt Naomi: a drone and gift card to the Nintendo eShop–thanks!

I can’t remember the last time we actually had a family photo taken so I figured it was time.

Scott and I doing test shots. I like this one!
The whole family 😀 (well minus Katrina)
A very rare sight–Katrina is actually sitting on Damien’s lap! So cute 🙂

Hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!

Christmas Town

The Friday before Christmas, we made it out to Busch Garden’s Christmas Town. A lot of the rides are closed for the season, but they decorate and open for both Halloween and Christmas. I love the Christmas vibe so I’m so happy we were able to make it out this year. We couldn’t have picked a better time too because the weather was a wonderful low 60s/high 50s and it wasn’t terribly crowded. We ate some BBQ, had some delicious peppermint hot chocolate, visited Santa, and rode the train around the park.

Damien and I with Frosty the Snowman
Moving through England
Entering France
The Gingerbread house in Germany
Outside Santa’a Workshop
Lots to look at while we wait to see Santa
Damien writing down what he wants from Santa. He wrote down “water gun”.
Damien and Santa 🙂 Or as Damien would put it “not the REAL Santa”.
Playing some carnival games. No prizes were won.
An attempt to get a pic together
Scott eating his apple pie a la mode funnel cake
Damien and I shared a hot fudge sundae funnel cake
On the train–choo choo!
Riding around the park
One of the closed water rides decked out in lights
The lighted tunnels made for the coolest pics
Selfie time on the Express Train
Time to head home

Damien said he didn’t have a good time. I don’t know why because the only thing that wasn’t great was the long wait in line for the train. Otherwise, I don’t know what he has to complain about! I loved it. If we ever go again, I’d like to see one of the Christmas shows.

Texas Trip and First Lady Visit

It was an eventful week. I flew to Texas for a week-long work conference. My room was nice and served a free breakfast AND dinner. I got to try Puerto Rican food and In-and-Out for the first time. Overall it turned out to be a productive trip.

I stayed in a suite. Here is the kitchen and living room.
This was the bedroom. Yes, there were two TVs.
In-and-Out burger, fries, and shake. I have to say that it wasn’t anything special. Not anything I would go out of my way to eat.
Scott and Damien decorated the house while I was gone 🙂 Damien did the tree by himself and I think he did an excellent job!

While I was in Texas, the military children from Damien’s school got to meet the First Lady, Melania Trump!

At one of the Langley hangers. Damien is on the far right.
First Lady Melania Trump
A screen shot from the video below of the First Lady greeting the school children (Damien appears about 1 minute, 23 seconds into the video).

Awards Ceremony, Thanksgiving, and Scott’s New Haircut

Damien made us proud at the school year’s first awards ceremony. He’s on the B Honor Roll with Perfect Attendance AND he passed the two Critical Assessments that the students start taking in Third Grade.

First quarter awards ceremony recipient–woot!

Scott let his hair grow out for about five months before it was time for a haircut. It did NOT look good. In fact, it kind of reminded me of wig hair lol. So instead of cutting it all off like when he was in the military, he went for a fashionable style instead and I think it looks SOOOO much better.

What an improvement!

Thanksgiving this year was low-key. We spent the day at home. Scott was sick so I made all the food: ham, scalloped potatoes, sweet potato casserole, and green bean casserole. Oh, and I made pumpkin pies too!

Ready for Christmas! Damien showing off his dance moves with the Dab!