I love our tradition of Christmas advent.  We have an advent calendar hanging on the wall and inside each little pocket is an activity we do together each day.  It’s a lot of work to put together, but I love the conscious time we spend together and I love coming up with new experiences each year to fit our stage of life, or to fit in with themes I am trying to teach the kids.  Here are just a few of my favorites from this year.
We took the kids to see How the Grinch Stole Christmas at the Buell Theater in Denver.  We all dressed fancy and went to dinner before the show.  The show was absolutely darling and Halle and I loved it.  The little boys liked it too, but it was just a bit too long to keep their attention.  Halle and I even stayed after the show for a Q&A with the actors. 
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The Parade of Lights.  Again this year we stayed at the Hilton in Denver. Funny story: There are two Hiltons in Denver and I was sure we were staying at the Grand Hilton.  So we went there and tried to check in.  I asked if they had remodeled the lobby because it looked so different.  Turns out we were booked at the Hilton Regency 🙂  Good thing they are only about a mile apart.  The Rowberry’s drove down to watch the parade with us.  And the next morning our family enjoyed a delicious brunch before heading off to church. 
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Our animal siblings watched the parade from the window of the hotel room.
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Josh had his very first piano recital!  He did great.  We just love Paige as our teacher.  Halle has improved leaps and bounds as well.
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We took a shift ringing the bell for the Salvation Army.  The kids were adorable and no one could resist their charms.  They were proud of the money they earned and I was proud of them for being brave enough to look people in the eye and tell them Thank You for their donation. 🙂
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We “Candy Cane Bombed” the teacher parking lot at school.
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And another yearly favorite: Fondue under the Christmas tree.  I just love our tree this year.  It is filled with handmade ornaments and reminders of places we’ve visited.  I feel like our tree is a representation of our life—full.  Full of love, life, memories, and sweet reminders of my growing kiddos. 
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We had a fun afternoon playing Christmas Bingo with our friends and getting all sorts of nifty dollar store prizes.
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And technically this wasn’t part of Advent, but it was so cute I must include it.  Josh’s class did a poetry reading for the parents and his teacher told them to dress nice.  Josh got up that morning and without any prompting from me, put on his suit. Which   He got the “best dressed” award 🙂
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Here is his two word poem
Makes Toys
Helps Santa
Feeds Reindeer
Prepares Sled
Likes Santa
Wrap Presents
Hat Jingles
Merry Christmas

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