Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas in Seattle

This year Matthew and I are planning to spend Christmas with friends and family in Salt Lake and Vegas, but seeing as this is our first Christmas in a state with no close family we wanted to have our own Christmas celebration too. Plus we didn't want to haul our christmas gifts for each other to Salt Lake just to bring them right back home.

Because we weren't going to be home for almost two weeks in December we decided against getting a Christmas tree this year, so I improvised and used our fireplace to hang our stocking and lights. I also put out Christmas decorations on the new bookshelf we bought from a girl in our ward that is moving. I even put out the tiny plastic Christmas tree that Matthew's mom sent him on his mission (so I guess we did have a tree).

Friday night our ward had a ward Christmas party and I am telling you this was like no other ward party I have ever been to. It was just as fancy as many weddings I've been to. There was a huge Christmas tree ice sculpture in the middle of the room, men were handing out roses with Christmas wishes to all the ladies, a candy bar (as in a huge table of assorted candies and goodies for your eating pleasure), a photo booth, a flip book booth (they take 6 seconds worth of video of you and then transform it into a flip book), and a dance floor with cool lights and modern music were all a part of the festivities. Turns out not every party is like this, but some of the guys in charge have connects in the wedding world and some associates owed them a few favors. We had a really good time with our friends the Quincys and Clarkes. A girl that I visit teach named Kerri also came and her and I spent some time dancing and creating a flip book. After the party we went over to the Quincy's apartment and watched a movie.

Saturday I did some last minute shopping for a few stocking stuffers and although I had done a lot of looking for gifts for Matthew I hadn't as of yet picked which store I would buy it from, so I finally made a decision and quickly collected the gifts. Meanwhile Matthew was franticly trying to finish the gift he was making me (we had decided in November that we would celebrate our Christmas the Sunday before we flew to Salt Lake). When I got home Matthew was pretty stressed out about his gift and reported that he had ruined Christmas. I assured him that all would be well and that it wasn't as bad as he thought.
Sunday morning we woke up and got ready for church and because we still had time before church we decided to open our gifts. I am always surprised at the things Matthew thinks of to get me. It's nice to know that he listens to the little things that I talk about. And although one of the gifts didn't quite turn out in time, the foreshadowing of what the completed project will look like made me very happy! I don't feel quite as good at gift giving, but I tried to pay attention to the things that Matthew said he not only wanted but thought we needed. That is something I have learned about Matthew; growing up, many of his gifts were things that he needed, so that's what he asks for. I fought giving him these types of things at first because I didn't feel like I was being romantic enough, but that is one thing I love about Matthew, he appreciates anything given to him. It was a wonderful Christmas in Seattle! Now we are looking forward to Christmas with family in Salt Lake and New Years in Vegas!

Famous penny pancakes!

Doesn't he look like a stud with that pom pom?

 Matthew got me a container of the tasty almonds I had been raving about and created cover's for our CD collection

Matthew and I enjoying the sparkling cider the Quincy's gave us!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Festival of Nativities

Matthew and I, along with the Quincy's and Jena B, went to the Festival of Nativities on Sunday. It was a big display of over 500 different Nativities from around the world! It is amazing to me how so many different, beautiful and unique pieces there are of this miraculous event. I took pictures of a "few" of the nativities that I like the most. There was also a room dedicated to the life and mission of Christ. It was filled with paintings and symbols of Christ. It went in an approximate timeline of Christ's life and ended with a display of a stone bench with white cloth and the message that Christ lives again. It was definitely my favorite part of the night. The festival was a good reminder of what this season is about! Merry Christmas!!