Monday, December 23, 2013

Holiday Traditions

Traditions abound this time of year.  From where we go to what we eat, from when we celebrate to how we decorate, and on and on.

To me, traditions are one of the many things that make Christmastime so special.  They're a link to our past, so often passed down from one generation to the next, and also a way to bond in the future and make memories for the future.  

I also think it's neat to hear other people's traditions and the stories behind them.  So today I thought I'd share a few traditions that me and my family have.

Things really get started on Christmas Eve.  It was always so hard as children to wait ONE more day to  open presents, so my mom would allow us to open one gift.  She always gave us new PJ's on Christmas Eve.  We plan to start that tradition with Emma this year, so you KNOW she'll be getting some new Christmas PJ's from Cloud 9!

We always go to our church's evening service on Christmas Eve.  After church, we head home for a delicious meal cooked by my mother.  My grandmother always spends Christmas with us, too.  She is 84-years-old.  Emma is named after her.  And we are so blessed to have her with us!  We eat, drink, and enjoy time as a family.

On Christmas morning we all hurry downstairs to see what Santa has brought for Emma.  She will be 19-months old, and we are looking forward to a wonderful Christmas with her and seeing how excited she is.

We'll enjoy breakfast as we exchange gifts with family.  Warning:  I may be about to make you (and myself) very hungry!  Mom always cooks her famous breakfast pizza.  She also has homemade biscuits with ham, homemade cinnamon rolls, and cheese grits.  But her breakfast pizza is what we all look forward to.  It's our tradition, and Christmas wouldn't be the same without it.

We will probably spend the rest of the day watching Emma play with all of her new toys and hopefully grab a nap when she does!  Then Christmas night, we'll have another dinner cooked by my mom, again.  Thank goodness she LOVES to cook!

So those are our holiday traditions.  What are yours?  Will you be starting any new traditions this year?

In closing, I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, a safe holiday season, and a Happy New Year!

Christmas 2012--The year we loved Santa
Christmas 2013--Not so sure about Santa

Monday, December 16, 2013

The day Santa came to Cloud 9

Saturday, was a big day at Cloud 9, as we welcomed everyone's favorite North Pole resident for a visit.  And we had a blast!

The rain Saturday morning cleared out just in time so that Santa's sleigh was able to make an easy landing.  

We had milk and cider, plus delicious cookies and other goodies from Mel's Sweet Treats.  I think I even saw Santa snag a few himself.  Guess he really does like milk and cookies!

Lots of kids visited with Santa, had their picture made, and told him a few requests for Legos, trains, baby dolls, and even a puppy dog.  (Be careful wrapping that one, Santa!)

We had some visiting Santa for the first time, as young as 3 weeks old.  And others who were so excited they talked about seeing Santa all morning, but when the moment finally came, they suddenly became shy, and maybe a little scared.

That's OK.  Emma didn't seem to like Santa all that much, either.  I'm sure that'll change one day.

We enjoyed catching up with friends while they were shopping and visiting with Santa, and enjoyed meeting lots of new friends, too.

I want to thank each of you for coming out Saturday and making this event a success.

Santa is probably back to the North Pole by now.  It's his busy time of year, you know.  But we hope he'll make Cloud 9 one of his regular stops in the future. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Few of My Favorite Things

Sometimes when you are ordering at a restaurant, you might ask the waiter or waitress, "What do you recommend?"  So for this week's blog post, I thought it would be fun to share a few of the top gifts I would recommend from Cloud 9.

To steal a line from a popular holiday song, these are a few of my favorite things.  (And you don't even have to leave me a tip!)

Pete the Cat Saves Christmas book with Pete the Cat plush - We are big fans of Pete the Cat around here, and think your child will be, too.

Checkout Register - Remember playing "store" as a kid?  Register comes with money and a card scanner!

For the little musician - Xylophone, Mini Maracas, Tambourine, or Drum.

Shopping Cart - I know a little girl in our house that is getting one of these!  (Wait, you're not reading this are you, Emma)  Any of our wooden food sets or any of our plush foods would be a great compliment to this gift.

Finger Puppet Book - Makes a great stocking stuffer!

Old Maid or Go Fish playing cards - These are also good stocking stuffers.

A to Z Uppercase Magnatab - Educational and fun!

Bilibo - A rocking chair? A tunnel? A spinning top? See what your child turns this versatile toy into.

Wonder Cleaning Cart - How awesome is this?  Comes with a broom, mop, hand brush, and dust pan. 

Lawnmower Push and Pull Toy - Remember when mowing the lawn was fun?

A wooden truck set:  Log Carrier, Low Loader, or Car Carrier 

It's hard to go wrong with blocks.  Check out our 14-Piece Magnetic Wooden Blocks

Actually, while I might be a little biased, I don't think you can go wrong with ANY gifts from Cloud 9 this Christmas.  No matter what you get your child, I hope it turns out to be one of their favorite things.