Monday, December 31, 2012

First Historic Trip

One major plus to us moving all the way across the freaking country is the history.  I have a BA in History and I'm super pumped to see all that surrounds me.  Unfortunately for me, it's frigidly cold outside and I don't want to go out in that.  We managed one trip before the first snow storm hit. 

We did a short bit of the freedom trail, hitting the site of the Boston massacre first.   This site was outside the Old State House.  We didn't go to the museum part of the State House because we hadn't planned to pay for it.  So there wasn't much to see. Definitely on my list of places to go back and explore more thoroughly.  We then down to Faneuil Hall. Inside there were multiple portraits and busts of major characters in the revolution. It was a cool place to visit. 

 Here's a group shot in front of the Samuel Adams Statue to the West of the Hall:

There's a also an indoor food court right next door that we wished we had known about.  We hadn't planned on eating there and it was about to snow, but next time we definitely will plan to try out some of the food.  It was very touristy food, but I'm sure it will take a few years to no longer feel like tourists when visiting these places.

The kids don't have a huge attention span for these historical sites. When it gets warmer I hope to venture out on Saturday afternoons on my own so I can take the time I want reading every little plaque and taking it all in.  Next on the list: The minuteman park and the Louisa May Alcott's Orchard House.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Prep

This year for Christmas I did an advent calendar to force myself to do fun things with the kids. I didn't want to spend all my time moping around the house, ruining everyone's Christmas. Each day we tried to read a scripture and do the activity on the back.

We were marginally successful.  Some activities happened the day we tore it from the countdown chain.  Some happened a few days later, some didn't happen at all.  I still haven't gotten around to making the peppermint marshmallows I wanted to make.  We didn't get to everything and at times I felt like no one really wanted to do the stuff I had planned.  Maybe next year I'll let them help them with the planning so they can get more excited about doing it.

A few of the things we did:
Took cookies to the neighbors: 
This was probably my favorite activity.  We were invited back to one single woman's house who was thrilled to have kids over for Christmas.  She shared her own cookies and her house full of Christmas knickknacks. It was awesome for the kids.
All ready to deliver

Dipped marshmallows in chocolate
Bought a real Christmas tree from the tree lot
Decorated the Christmas tree:
 We tried doing a popcorn garland this year.  Those things take forever!  We only finished about three feet before giving up.  Now I know why we never did it growing up.
Decorated the Christmas tree
Made letters to Santa
Made cards for friends
Cut snowflakes
Read Christmas books
Made Jolly Rancher ornaments
Made Gifts for siblings

It was fun and helped me do some of those fun things I only read about on Pinterest.  I learned a lot, mostly that we need to find more sugar free things to do.  I think the marshmallows didn't happen because we were so sick of sugar.  Plus I was tired of sending the neighbor boy back home hyped up on sugar.  I think we'll definitely try again next year.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Christmas Tree Adventure

We had to get a live tree, since they are everywhere. We just had to go down the street, and it was fun to see how it really works.

And it wouldn't be a tree without being shaken first. I had not seen that before, and still I don't understand how it matters. I had to toss the thing around to get it on the car, then into the house. I am sure it has some purpose, right?

Sunday, December 2, 2012

First Thanksgiving in Boston

We moved into our house in Winchester one week before Thanksgiving.  One of the great things about being Mormon is that people are on the lookout for someone who might need help.  We showed up at church not knowing a soul, and before church even started, we had an invitation to Thanksgiving dinner.  Now, I probably could have thrown together a dinner and cooked it up for my family all on my own.  But I think it may have been a little depressing after having spent every Thanksgiving as long as I can remember with a whole bunch of people.  I was so happy to have someone to share the holiday with, even if we didn't even know them.  The food was wonderful and we had a good time making new friends.

A few week later when we were a little more settled, I decided to have Thanksgiving dinner part two.  One of the hard things about not hosting Thanksgiving is the lack of leftovers.  After reading all the posts on Facebook about the Turkey sandwiches, Thanksgiving casseroles and general food enjoyment being had by all my friend who had leftovers, I decided I wanted them too.

So here is our Thanksgiving spread:
JW never keeps is arms folded for a prayer. I think he may have been excited!
I made Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, rolls, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, and peas pickles and cheese.  It was delicious and best of all, it was all ready on time.  I think I may have to host next year on actual Thanksgiving day and invite some other poor lonely soul who just left behind their family.  I think I could do it!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

First Snow in Boston!

Who knew that we would actually get snow in Boston? OK, yes, everyone knew that would happen. So the crazy Arizonians thought it was a blast. At least the kids and I did. Except JW, who is not a big fan of the cold.
Because we have heavy jackets, it looks colder than it was. It was really only just freezing, and the snow was very light.
We are excited for the rest of Winter!