Archives for December 2013

Merry Christmas Baby!

(We’ve been relaxing and enjoying the holidays, hence the blog slacking.  I promise I’ll go back to my regular Thursday morning posting schedule next week.  Until then, pass the chocolate Santas!)

Dear Makenzie,

Christmas has come and gone in the blink of an eye.  It’s almost impossible to believe that we just celebrated our second Christmas with you… wasn’t it just a few weeks ago that we put you in your teeny tiny 1st Christmas outfit to meet Santa?

12_1 Kenzie with Santa 1

December 2012 – Our little Christmas baby meeting Santa for the first time

Christmas 2013 has been a wonderful!  Your dad and I are still on vacation, and all this extra time with you has been awesome – lots of sleeping in (if you count 7:30 as sleeping in), playing, reading and giggling .  You make life so much fun!

In case you don’t remember this Christmas I figured I’d write this post for you with some of the best parts of the holiday season.

:: Decorating ::

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You were really helpful this year in Decking the Halls!  Thanks Kenz! (Right after you helped hang these ornaments, you took most of them down and piled them in your wagon, but either way it was very cute.)

:: Meeting Santa! ::

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This December marked your second visit to Santa! You did great and you even waved to your Daddy and me as you told Santa what you wanted. You definitely made the Nice list. Way to go baby girl!

:: Enjoying the lights ::

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Here you are at the door checking out the neighborhood Christmas lights! I’m shocked by how grown up you have become.

Then our family holiday fun began on Christmas Eve with a drive to Ohio.  I’ll let the pictures tell the rest…

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You were snug as a bug as we cruised along route 90 to Ohio.

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You tolerated a few pictures as we dressed you up as Kenzie Claus. Daddy sure loves you!

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Here you are getting ready for a Christmas Eve sleep as Nana reads you and Ryan a bedtime story.

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Visions of sugarplums dancing in your head…

And finally, it was Christmas morning!!!

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Ryan found the first gift of the year, his new train! All Aboard!

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The morning was a blur of wrapping paper. You, and your cousins Ryan and Jack must have been good this year.  Santa brought you lots of cool toys.

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Jack Jack enjoyed his 1st Christmas along with Auntie Melissa!

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Your new trike and matching helmet (in your reindeer-footie jammies).  You melt our hearts. 🙂

After a few days we headed to Pittsburgh for a very McGee Christmas!

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Cousin Connor was excited to see you!

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Auntie Meg checked out the 2014 calendar with you.

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Your Mamaw and Pappap bought you your very FIRST car this Christmas! It’s a super cute VW Beetle. We can’t wait to see you cruise down the street in it!

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Your friend Charlotte loved your car too!

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And there was more bedtime story fun waiting for you!

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And it wouldn’t be a Christmas without the official cousin shot. It turned out very cute this year!

Another great Christmas in the books!

Makenzie, you make the holidays SO much fun.  Your Dad and I count our lucky stars every day for healthy, happy you!!  Merry Christmas Baby, you’re the best gift ever.   We can’t wait to see what 2014 brings!

Love you to the moon and back,




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One of those amazing melt-your-mom-heart Moments

Call me a rebel because it’s not a Wednesday night, but I feel the urge to blog a little.  It’s honestly a selfish reason… I don’t want to ever forget today.

Today in the middle of cleaning, in the middle of wrapping, in the middle of life, I had one of the amazing Melt-your-Mom-heart Moments.  Those are the moments that make all the hard parts of parenting worthwhile.

It started simple enough… one of our wonderful neighbors/friends brought Makenzie an awesome (and incredibly generous) Christmas gift: the super adorable Disney Princess Klip Klop Stable.   It’s so cute!  She was napping when they dropped it off, but Denny and I were so excited to see her reaction that we woke her up early (after we played with it ourselves of course).  Kenz came into the room and let out a shriek to see the awesome gift.   The picture below highlights her joy.  She just stood there with her little hands moving, and she had a huge smile on her face.  It melted my heart into a million billion pieces.



Kenzie played with it for a long time and didn’t even notice when I left the room briefly…  When I came back it was as if I watched her transform from our baby to a little girl.  Denny and I both snuck in the doorway and watched her picking up the little people and moving them around and babbling to them telling the ponies all about the storyline she was creating.  It was the first time we ever saw her play like such a big girl.

So cute, and so amazing!  There were tears in my eyes and there was a feeling of immense appreciation in my heart for what we have.  Our little pumpkin is turning into a big girl one klip klop at a time.

For all the stress and the anxiety I’ve been feeling as I try to make Christmas “perfect” I was reminded tonight that it has nothing to do with perfection,  It’s really about those super cool moments we get to spend with the little (and big) ones in our life we love the most.

Here’s to finding more of those moments in your holiday season!




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An (Honest) Mom’s Letter to Santa

Dear Santa,

Hey big guy!  It’s me, Erin.  You’ll be here in a few days and I have yet to send you a letter.  This is partly because I’ve been busy, but more so because I’m afraid I don’t have a spot on the ‘Nice’ list.  Last year at this time I just had a baby and I was full of crazy hormones, but I’m not sure my excuse this year… Sleepless nights?…Working mom craziness?…  Do those count?

The past few weeks paint a pretty vivid snapshot of the year so I’ll be honest and tell you what I’ve been doing (and what I haven’t been doing).


Here goes:

  • Our family went four days in a row without eating vegetables at dinner – Not nice
  • I failed to make our bed… for the past 51 weeks  – Not Nice
  •  Makenzie ate a chicken nugget out of the trash can while I was in charge of her.  – Gross and Very Not Nice
  • I missed my Grandpa’s Birthday – Definitely Not Nice
  • I bought Denny chocolate as stocking stuffers and then ate them all within 2 hours. (Sorry honey) – Slightly Naughty
  • I went through a yellowish light, crap! – Very naughty
  • I snapped at Denny because I was feeling stressed. – Not nice at all.
  • I said curse words when my Roomba stopped working. –  Naughty.
  • I said another curse word when I woke up late. – Naughty, naughty.
  • I said curse words when I went through a yellowish (red) light, but I was not with my daughter if that makes up for it. –  Naughty, naughty, naughty.
  • I forgot to give the cat breakfast. – Meow, not nice.


  • I lied about my weight when signing up for life insurance. – Not nice but who tells the truth anyway?

I think that’s it (oh wait, I have a dentist appointment Monday morning and I’ll likely lie about flossing regularly).


Phew.  Okay, that’s really it.  I’ve officially come clean with my Not Nice-ness.  It’s not  pretty but it’s the truth.  Now, it’s your call as to what list I’m on.  If 2013 is the year I end up on the Naughty List, I can accept it, and I’ll definitely try harder next year.  If I can squeak by on the Nice list, awesome!  And if that’s the case, I would like to request a 12-hour night sleep and perhaps a pedicure.   Otherwise, I’m good to go and I have everything a girl could want.

I’m looking forward to a really fun Christmas!  Thanks for all your hard work and keep me posted on your answer.  I’ll be eagerly waiting and hoping to unwrap a full night’s sleep under the tree.



naughty nice


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My Favorite Things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things

Perhaps it’s the holiday season or perhaps it was the recent Live version of the Sound of Music… who doesn’t LOVE that movie (although we all know Carrie Underwood paled in comparison to Julie Andrews but that’s not the point), Either way it got me thinking about My Favorite Things.

favorite things

Last year I devoted 12 consecutive days to listing items that any new Mom could use (check it out here – Mommy McBlog 12 Days of Giftmas).  It was fun to work on every day, but since I’m not on maternity leave anymore, this year’s post will be the abridged version.   And go!!

Mommy McBlog – My Favorite Things

(in no particular order)


Binkies on a String

If Denny and I were Hansel & Gretel, we could trace our last 14 months by finding binkies along the way.   They’ve been tossed/dropped over balconies, down toilets, in pools, around beds, the list goes on and on.  Then about 12 months into being parents we gained some common sense and purchased a few of these bad boys.

Hello Binkies on a String, I think I love you!!!

binkies on a string


Mary Kay Peach Satin Hands Pampering Set

Perfect for those busy moms who need a spa trip but don’t have time.  Renew, smooth and pamper those hands!  You’ll be glad you did and your hands won’t feel a day over 25.


I love everything Snapfish… photo books, ornaments, calendars, you name it!  They also have rockin’ 60% off promo codes.  Heck yeah!!




Wowza, Amazing, Fabulous!!

The. Best. Purchase. Ever!   I can never say “I don’t have time to sweep/vacuum the floors” again!   It takes a few minutes to pick up loose toys and items but then I hit Go and the Roomba sweeps up the entire downstairs.  It’s awesome!!   Go get one if you don’t have one yet.  Your life will be changed forever.


Tim Hortons K-Cups …  

This is even better than sliced bread because the last time I checked you couldn’t put Schwebel’s in your Keurig every morning to make your day amazing!

keurig  = erin 2

(I swear I look this happy every morning after I get my Tim Ho’s coffee)


And last but certainly not least…

Friday Night Date Nights

Well, sort of a date night.  Every Friday night Denny and I put Makenzie to bed, and then we get a little crazy…  We order up a hot Picasso’s pizza for the two of us to share and we hang out on the couch, we catch up with each other, we catch up on some DVR and we get a little bit food drunk.  Talk about hot and steamy nights!  I highly recommend it.


Those are some of my favorite things.  Hopefully they inspired some ideas for those of you with last-minute shopping (I’m part of this group)!  May your days leading up to Christmas be merry and bright (and if they aren’t all perfectly merry, bright and stress-free, then Congratulations, you’re normal!)

Thanks for stopping by!


Erin the blog elf


What gifts Jingle Your Bells?

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Christmas came in like a wrecking ball

It’s now official… Miley Cyrus and her inappropriate twerking have even impacted Santa Claus.  We’ve all known for years that jolly old man likes Ho Ho Ho’s, but now the perhaps biggest Ho Ho Ho of 2013 has changed the course of the holiday season as we know it…

How, you ask?  Well because Christmas has come in like a Wrecking ball!

I have a feeling she’s not on the Nice list.

What’s up with this very short time frame between Turkey Day and Christmas?

It’s a mere 26 days… that comes down to only 8 weekend days aka 16 hours of baby naptime in which to finish all the gifting, baking, decorating, writing, addressing, wrapping and prepping… it seems like there is too much to do and not enough time to do it!

Mom holiday meltdown, tis the season!

And I’m wondering if I’m the only one feeling way behind right now.  According to my Facebook and Instagram feeds, I’m the only Mom in America who hasn’t done all of the following:

  • Cut down a tree in from the whirly-twirley forest of fun
  • Decorated the inside and outside of the house with LED twinkle lights
  • Hung the specially embroidered stockings by the chimney with care
  • Made and frosted organic gingerbread cookies
  • Designed a wreath out of candy canes and scrabble pieces (oh boy, don’t get me started with Pinterest)
  • Made a scrapbook of the elf’s journey around the shelf, the house and the continent of Europe
candy cane wreath pinterest

Seriously, what’s up with my overachieving friends and family?!?  You’re killing me people!

Perhaps the holidays seem extra busy because now we have a little elf running around the house making it challenging to get anything done beside dance to the Hot Dog song (incredibly fun but not productive)… Perhaps the short time frame truly is adding to the stress… Or perhaps I’m just being a whiny Mom who will end up on the naughty list if I don’t change my attitude.

So if you’re out there and you feel my pain, please let me know.  As for everyone else, please lower your expectations of my holiday festiveness this year.  We’re definitely going to enjoy the holidays but there is a strong possibility we’ll be doing it with a bale of hay on our front porch (still from Halloween) and a cookie jar full of store-bought cookies!  Cheers to that!


Is that a candy cane in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

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