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Blog, christmas, Family, holidays, Vlog

Christmas Cheer

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It’s that time again!! One of my favorite times of the year. Decorating the Christmas tree with my family in matching pajamas! This is our 3rd year doing it and I don’t see us stopping any time soon. Well, hopefully not. Teenagers still like to match their entire family and pose for pictures with them, right? Someone tell me that they do! For now, I will cherish these moments while they are still young enough to not only match us, but to actually love matching us! My pregnant self actually just teared up a little bit thinking of how fleeting these moments are. But I know we still have a few years so I’m going to enjoy it while I can!

This year we got these new pajamas! We had been wearing the same elf sets for the past 2 years so it was time for a change..especially since some of the kids’ pants had holes in the knees from wearing them so much. This year I decided to go with something a little less Christmas-y so we could rock them all year round. Not that we didn’t already do that with the elf jammies. But now I could actually photograph them all year without looking out of place. And can we talk about how much my husband enjoys it too? Because I know there are some husbands out there who would be totally opposed to the matching jammie thing. But Don is completely on board.

Before setting up our tree, I asked the kids if we could snap a few family photos. The focus and coloring is off on pretty much every picture but I still absolutely love them! My favorite part is seeing everyone’s personalities shining through. (Except sweet Clementine who would have rather not been in the pictures with us. I suppose she’s already embarrassed haha.)

While I was setting up the camera and testing out the camera remote, I happened to snap this adorable picture. Desmond’s smile melts me every time I look at it!

All of these pictures were taken the week before getting our new camera a lens so now we’re going to have to retake them to get better quality 😉 Anyway, after we were done taking pictures, we drug all our Christmas decorations out and started putting up the Christmas tree!

I didn’t start taking pictures until they were probably halfway done because I was helping them put hooks on the ornaments. But I did get a few photos!

And of course by the time I pulled out my camera, Desmond was pretty much done. I managed to find one picture on my camera to document the fact that he helped 😉

I love these pictures of the boys reaching up to hang the ornaments as high as they can. It won’t be long until they won’t need to find things to stand on.

When we decorate, I let the kids put up all the ornaments on their own. It ends up looking like colorful chaos. It’s beautiful because it’s their creativity shining through. But I’ll be honest, I want my tree to look nice too! So after they are done decorating and have moved on to other things, I go back and rearrange it how I like it!

The past couple of years they didn’t really care. This year I could tell they were kind of wanting to keep it the way it was. I mentioned buying them a clearanced tree after Christmas to put upstairs so that they could decorate however they wanted. They were so excited! They love the rainbow tree that we ended up with. But I know they’d also love to have a bit more control with creativity. So I’m excited that we found a solution that everyone is happy with!

Clementine had been napping up until this point. When she came out, she had so much fun playing with all of the ornaments. It made me very nervous that we’d spend the whole Christmas season redirecting her. But thankfully it hasn’t become too much of an issue. It’s kind of funny that I prepare myself every year to have a toddler destroying our tree and then they barely notice its existence.

I love our bright, cheery rainbow tree during the day. And also the cozy, magical vibes it gives off at night. I saw Don playing around with the camera by the tree so that made ME want to do it. I always love the glow it casts on everyone’s faces.

And this itty bitty Clemmie hand reaching for an ornament!

Also, this super grainy, but super adorable picture of the kids. They all kept lining up on the window sill and asking me to take pictures. The way Desmond is looking at his big brother is just the sweetest so I had to include it in this post!!

Before you go, make sure you watch the vlog from our Christmas tree decorating!!

And if you want to see our tree decorating from years past and see how much everybody has grown, you can click HERE for last year’s and HERE  for two years ago! Have a happy weekend!

Blog, Fall, st. louis, Vlog

Fabulous Fall

I’ve been a little MIA over here for the past couple of weeks. Partly because we’ve been so busy and partly because I haven’t been motivated to blog. By the time the kids go to bed at night, I’m ready to turn on the tv and relax. And then I end up falling asleep sitting up haha. But that’s a different story.

Anyway, since we’ve had a few fall outings, I wanted to share some pictures from September and October…starting with this little afternoon picnic in Forest Park on a super nice day. The temperatures the past few days have been dipping down below freezing overnight so let’s just say that I’m missing that nice weather.

Don and I celebrated our 10 year anniversary back in September. It’s crazy to think it has already been 10 years! We don’t get the chance to do many things together without the kids so it was very special to be able to get away for an overnight trip to the Kansas City area.

We went to see the sunflowers in Lawerence, Kansas. I had been dying to see them for years. When I realized they were in bloom during the week of our anniversary, I knew that’s where I wanted to go to celebrate. We couldn’t believe how absolutely breathtaking it was! Pictures don’t even do it justice (especially my pictures 😉 )

We’re already dreaming of another trip back there next year with the kids. Although the thought of that slightly stresses me out haha.

Flashing forward to our annual visit to the pumpkin patch. We like to go every year for the experience (and the pictures) and then we purchase our pumpkins at Aldi because they are so much cheaper. But we usually let the kids each pick out their own mini pumpkin on our visit.

We went to a nearby patch that we hadn’t visited since Liam was a baby. And though the pumpkins were fun, the playground was a definite highlight for the kids. Of course, the highlight for me was taking pictures 😉 I loved this sweet moment when Kai walked over to Clem and started talking to her. All her siblings are so good to her.

Any time the kids see these decorations with the cut outs for their heads, they have to have a picture. Going along with their picture ideas always makes them more willing to go along with mine–making photography fun and not just a chore.

A couple of weeks ago, we went to the zoo on the most perfect fall day. It was a short, simple trip–nothing special about it–but it was one of my favorite outings with the kids. Desmond (our 2 year old) was in such a happy mood (after having a very difficult previous month with him) so it just made the whole day feel so carefree and fun.

For anyone who hasn’t been to the St. Louis Zoo, our zoo is rated one of the best in the country. And it’s free! So we like to pop in for a few hours when we have some nice weather. If you’re in the area, make sure you visit!

And this sea lion photo–one of my favorite pictures I have taken of the kids. We had the sea lion tunnel to ourselves for quite a while (and if you’ve been to the St. Louis Zoo, you know how rare that is) so I was able to patiently wait for the perfect moment when a sea lion swam by. I love it so much!

I hope to be more motivated to blog now that I’ve been able to complete a few projects that had been keeping me busy. But in the meantime, you can watch our vlog from our zoo visit! Desmond definitely stole the show for this vlog. We really couldn’t get over how fun he was that day (like I said, we had a super rough month with him leading up to that point) so he was kind of the center of attention. I hope you love it!

And please, if you have any vlogs you’d like to see us do or blog posts you’d like to have me write, please let us know! It’s always so helpful to know what you’re interested in reading/seeing! I hope you have a happy Halloween tonight! I can’t wait to share pictures of the kids’ costumes!