The Games Have Begun

This Saturday, I packed in three Christmas celebrations and, in my opinion, there aren't many better ways to spend a weekend day.  Before diving into that day, Ella had her school's Holiday Program on Friday night.  Of thirty-odd children in the show, ours was the only one refusing to get on stage. Happily, she agreed to stand up with her classmates after the first song - though she didn't sing, clap or smile.  Still, I was proud of her.  Stages are definitely not her thing.  Michael sat on his Dad's shoulders and had a good time.  He's ready for his turn up there, I think. 

Being silly before the show:

Ella decorated some gingerbread cookies after Michael crashed.  In case you're curious, no, she didn't share with her parents.

The first Christmas celebration: the Manning extended family.  Here is baby Ben. 

Michael got a Toy Story dinosaur flash light that roars.  Big hit.

Next up, Christmas celebration number two at our home with Wes' immediate family.  The kids were really on a roll by this time.

Gigi and Gran, supervising the mayhem. 

Felipe the flamingo was an instant hit. 

Sunday morning, we asked Michael, "What's your monkey's name?"  "Oo oo ah ah."  Duh. 

Michael's favorite of the day, his "screwdriver."  Don't call it a drill, but check out his form.  Way to go, dude.

"Yeah.  I've got this."

Happy birthday to Poppa, Gramps and Uncle David!  Nice of the boys to let Ella help with blowing out the sparkler candles. 

The third celebration was book club dinner at Agave - delicious!  But you'll have to imagine it, because the camera didn't come along!