All The Christmas Things! 🎄🥰

*Let’s try this again! When I first posted this it wasn’t showing up- hope it does this time!*

Hi all! I wanted to get this post out before Christmas, and I think it’s going to happen! I am as shocked as you are. I’m looking forward to writing it since it’s all the Christmas Things and then some ☺️.

Picking up after Thanksgiving! November 26th I took Moose on his first ever official run (trot for him) now that he’s old enough. We did 4 miles together! So. Much. Fun.

The weekend was pretty chill as DJ recovered from HFM. I just knocked a lot off the to-do list and got the house in order which was nice.

November 27th I started the day with a spinach, mushroom, vegan smoked Gouda omelette and a side of leftover vegan cornbread and jam. 😊

That afternoon, I was sterilizing Quinn’s pacis. Many times when she has her paci, she makes a “doi doi” sound, so naturally we started calling her paci her “doi doi”. Well when I was sterilizing this new batch, DJ walked over with Quinn and went “Look Quinnie, Mommy’s making doi doi stew!”. Made me laugh 😆.

You can hear the “doi doi” a little in this vid 🥰

The night of December 1st, Quinn spiked a 102 temp. The whole next day, she mostly slept but seemed to feel better by the evening. Must have been a 24 hour bug. Thankfully I didn’t have to work that day and could give her all the cuddles.

Another day, another veggie bone broth soup.

December 4th was a lot of fun! Kollyns, my cousin’s daughter, had her first birthday at a fruit farm lodge! It was the coolest first birthday, not a detail was spared. It was Christmas themed with a tree full of ornaments of her from the first year, festive decorations galore, a cookie making station for the kids, a hot chocolate and coffee station and the cherry on top- a special appearance by Mr. and Mrs. Claus themselves!

This was Quinn’s first time meeting Santa and she did great. She was purely fascinated by this guy with a long beard. Speaking of- she decided to pull said (very real) beard. Poor Santa!! That girl has an iron grip too. I know, my hair is on the receiving end of it most days, lol.

But still a memory so sweet! Just like this dessert station 😍.

December 5th we woke up to this glorious sunrise!

That afternoon, Gigi, Chris and Renee stopped by to see Quinn and have lunch together! We ordered in Piada. They also kindly watched her while I ran off to a doctors appointment (finally established a PCP after being here for over a year, figured I should practice what I preach ha). Us healthcare folk can be the worst patients.

Anyway, while they were here, they shared the link to all the wedding photos! (You may remember the wedding from this post). They were without a doubt some of the most gorgeous wedding photos I’ve ever seen!! I wanted to share this one of Quinn making her first ever debut as flower girl down the aisle :).

That afternoon for Quinn’s nap, Gigi walked with us in a nearby neighborhood for a good couple hours. It was so fun, the two of us could chat forever if given the chance!! And Quinn slept the entire time. I think she likes the white noise of the chit chat.

December 6th, I unfortunately had to call off work again since Quinn spiked a temp overnight. She turned the corner fairly quickly the next day though, just had a little cold that lingered after.

That evening I made some Banza pasta paired with a yummy Athletic non-alcoholic IPA.

Moose was exhausted that evening after a fun day at Aunt Marie’s!

For DJ, I made some black bean tacos that week. Unfortunately, I couldn’t have them because there was soy in them, but he said they were delicious!

December 7th I ran through the Starbucks drive through before a haircut. I have gotta say. I have decided as an unpopular opinion that I just don’t like Starbucks. Cue the gasps. I know, I know. I sound like a real coffee snob, but the coffee always tastes so bitter to me. We’re spoiled with having Nervous Dog nearby; it’s tough to go back to Starbucks after that. But I will definitely drink it if there’s nothing else around, don’t get me wrong. I will drink any coffee over no coffee.

I dropped off Quinn at daycare for a couple hours while I got the hairs chopped and took Moose for a run. They sent this sweet picture of her writing her first letter to Santa!❤️ It’s hard for me to drop her off when I don’t absolutely have to, but these pics remind me she genuinely enjoys daycare!

When I picked her up, we had fun together the rest of the day! We went to the same local shop we did in the fall, and this time instead of pumpkins, we picked up poinsettias. The owners were both there and soo sweet. They seemed happy to see Quinn again!

I also picked up a couple other little Christmas trinkets like the reindeer feed, burlap fern, and coffee mug that I lined with candy canes. I put Quinn front facing in the carrier for the first time ever while decorating- she was alll about that!

This Santa pictured above actually has special sentiment. It was my grandma’s, and she distributed them to family before she and my grandpa moved into their current place. All my family on my mom’s side has a couple Santas. I obviously wanted the baking Santa with the dog and was excited when he was still up for the taking!

That evening, I asked DJ if he was craving anything specific for dinner, and he requested cacio e pepe. We had this for the first time in Austin, and we were obsessed. I looked up a recipe expecting it to be complicated (I mean the name sounds so fancy, right?), but it was actually so easy!!! Highly recommend. (I couldn’t eat it with the dairy, but I will be trying it as soon as I can). DJ raved about it!

December 9th I felt like I’d been hit by a truck. I had a 102 fever overnight (deja vu!) and severe chills. I haven’t had chills like that since I was a kid. It was hard to get out of bed, but obviously Quinn needed me to. I tried to stay moving and distracted most of the day so I didn’t have to focus how terrible I felt. I started to put together the gift bags for her daycare teachers and wrapped a few gifts.

I captured Quinn’s 7 month photo (just a couple days late). These photos are getting harder to get because she’s so wiggly and wanting to be Dora the Explorer everywhere she goes.

Probably needless to say, this sweet girl and my time with her was the best medicine. I was feeling better by the evening!

I was fiercely craving red meat that evening, so I made some bison tacos for dinner. Mmm mmm.

Unfortunately, with my fever and not feeling 100%, we cancelled our weekend plans. We’ve had to cancel so many plans lately, but thankfully everyone has been very understanding.

The morning of December 11th, I sat with Quinn and rolled this small ball to her. She loved it (but is still working on the idea of rolling it back hehe). She’s sitting so well though unassisted now.

That day I made a gift box for the delivery drivers who I do not know what I’d without this year. Since Quinn was born we pretty much have had everything delivered, and I’m so darn grateful for the convenience.

December 13th, Quinn and I went to First Watch with Gigi! Quinn had her very first food order out for herself, which of course I had to document. I got her a couple eggs that I could cut into strips and feed her. She did well! About the same amount made it on the floor that made it in her mouth, but it was so fun.

Gigi ordered their cinnamon chocolate chip pancake. Their pancakes are so so good.

I had their tri-athlete. Love this meal, it’s so filling and nourishing. I think the cremini mushrooms they put in it are particularly tasty.

We went back to play with Quinn before Gigi headed out for the day. I adore these pics! 💕.

We got Quinn the biggest playpen we could find for the living room. She loves it! We had a hard time keeping her from climbing on the wood furniture and chasing after Moose’s bones, so this was a great solution! (Moose was so fed up with her going after his bones that he started stock piling them on the couch out of her reach. One time we gave her one of her toys that looked like a bone just to keep her happy 😂).

Also, this is officially Quinn’s pouf- she loves pulling up and standing on it. Such an unexpectedly great little tool for her to practice her gross motor skills.

For dinner that evening, I made us caulipower chicken tenders, veggies and farro. I’ve been on a real farro kick lately. I love how hearty and chewy it is.

December 14th I was craving sushi like nobody’s business. I ordered an eel and crab roll from Ichiban Sushi for lunch- never disappoints!

That evening, I made a veggie flatbread with tomato sauce, kite hill ricotta cheese (vegan), mushrooms, artichoke hearts, arugula and vegan parmesan on a Lavash wrap. This turned out unexpectedly so delicious. That kite hill ricotta is a winner!!

The evening of December 15th was DJ’s holiday party for work. I ordered Enticing Cakes to bring to the party. They had great flavors, including a deep fried Oreo cupcake! We didn’t make it to dessert to try them out (had to leave early to get Quinnie to sleep), but we will reorder for some occasion and give them a try! I just love DJ’s coworkers and always have a blast when we all get together.

December 17th, we went over my brother and sister-in-law’s to celebrate Christmas with them and my nephews and niece! It was special bonding time. My brother is an awesome dad, but it’s fun seeing him in the Uncle role now. Here he’s showing Quinn the ornaments on the Christmas tree and the train looping around on the track.

Chatting with my sister-in-law, Maura, is like therapy! She’s a mom of three young ones and always has amazing wisdom, tips and advice for me. So grateful for them.

Kate could not wait to see and hold her cousin Quinn!

Kate gave us all face paintings, and I’m kicking myself for not taking a picture because the butterfly she painted on my cheek was so cute & good! DJ and Jack were two peas in a pod the whole evening, playing various sports games. Will is a ball of energy and has the sweetest little giggle! I love seeing his sweet personality develop.

We opened gifts and enjoyed watching the kids play with them before heading out.

December 18th, my good friend Melissa had a birthday lunch at Michael Angelo’s. I was so excited to try out the food since the only time I’d been there was for Renee’s wedding. I didn’t get pics (I should have), but I tried their asparagus salad with salmon, and it was soooo gooood. I think I will go back there for my birthday-there’s so much on their menu I want to try! It was a blast- I got to meet many of the fellow bridesmaids and flower girl who will be in Melissa’s wedding next August. They are all so awesome!

December 19th, I couldn’t find my pump bag anywhere. I realized I must have left it at work, so I ran there to get it. So frustrating when things like this happen because it feels like a time suck, but I was grateful I at least found it!

This week at daycare, I received this adorable pic!

They also sent the sweetest, most creative Christmas goodies back with Quinn. Made me darn emotional! They have a wrapped gift from Quinn to us that I’m saving for Christmas Day. I savor everything. How special is all this?! There’s even a little footprint reindeer ornament 🥺💕.

And that wraps us up to about… well now! Have a very Merry Christmas, all! What a beautiful time of year to spend time with loved ones and celebrate Christ’s birth. ❤️🎄

Questions for you:

– What are your Christmas plans?

– I didn’t get around to baking cookies this year, but if you did, what did you make?!



17 thoughts on “All The Christmas Things! 🎄🥰

  1. The photos are wonderful. I didn’t make cookies, however, I made carob cupcakes. They’re good. I don’t drink coffee; however, Rick drinks coffee and he doesn’t like Starbucks either. You are not alone. 🎄⛸☕⛄❤

  2. Fabulous photos, love the beautiful one of you walking down the aisle at the wedding, Quinn just looks so pleased with life coming down the aisle! All the photos of her happy self with Santa are so precious and let’s face it, all of her photos I just can’t get enough of! Merry Merry Christmas!

  3. Quinn is such a pretty little girl and I love that Christmas dress. While there are many pictures of Quinn here, each very sweet, I really like the wide-eyed look at seeing Santa. 🙂 Merry Christmas to you, DJ and Quinn and your family.

      1. Yes, they are so precious Mackenzie. I treasure my Santa and me photo taken my first year – I would have been just a month older than Quinn as I was born in April. I really liked the look on her face as she “studied” Santa. 🙂

  4. So many thoughts! Quinn is adorable, & I just love her festive outfits!! Her photos with Santa are precious, & that party looks & sounds so fun! That video is adorable. Ans has made sounds through her paci that are so cute. Our girls are just the best!!

    You two looked beautiful in the wedding! That is such a heart melting photo captured.

    I cannot wait to take Ans to First Watch. I love that you all had a fun brunch!

    That sky 😍

    All of your homemade food is so creative & looks amazing! I love that you were able to get together with friends too.

    I’m so sorry about all the gross illnesses. I hope we’re done with them soon.

    I’m sitting here holding my eight month old. Where has the time gone, sweet friend? I’m emotional over it. I still remember being at my in laws & receiving your message that you were at the hospital gearing up to birth Quinn. What an amazing year it has been. ❤️

    1. Thank you , friend!! 🥰 the paci noises are tooo stinking cute! ❤️ I love that Ansley does that too!

      Hope you had a great brunch there too! I think you said you were going to go for NY? ☺️

      I am so emotional too. The end of the year made me particularly reflective over the incredible year we had meeting our little ones !! I remember us saying “2022 is the year we will meet our girls!” Crazy it’s already 2023! I’m hanging on so tight realizing how fast this all goes 🥹❤️

  5. Wow Mackenzie! What an awesome post, except for the part where you were sick! That picture of Quinn looking at Santa is frame-able! You ladies look so beautiful at the wedding.

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