This Christmas season we traveled to Chicago to celebrate with Alyssa’s family. The trip had a bittersweet beginning as we attended services to honor and remember Alyssa’s great-grandmother, Nana, who passed away a week before Christmas. She was by all accounts the true matriarch of the family. A genuinely remarkable woman, it would be impossible for anyone who had met her to not remember her sense of humor and beautiful smile.
Living in Nashville the last several years, these two northerners have had a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit with a forecast of 65 and snowless in December. So we were both happy to see some flurries our first day in the Windy City.
There were of course the epic family get togethers complete with karaoke and dancing.
One of my favorite parts of going to Chicago in the winter is that my in-laws live on a pond that is perfect for skating when it freezes. My skating skills aren’t necessarily on par with the rest of the crew. However, I did get a pretty decent hockey lesson from Alyssa’s dad, and even helped (at least I tried to) protect the turf in a neighborhood pickup game.
Alyssa on the other hand grew up figure skating and is pretty awesome on the ice.
Alyssa and I became Aunt and Uncle this year to twin boys, and even though we hated missing their first Christmas we’re so grateful for technology that let us see our little buddies!
We went downtown to check out the city’s holiday lights.
Hope that you all had a great Christmas with loved ones!
We took a nice long break to celebrate the holidays with our family and friends. Here are some highlights from our round of Christmas Partying:
Baking Sugar Cookies for our Christmas Movie Night.
Watching Elf with friends for Movie Night. (My second favorite Christmas movie… #1 is Home Alone!)
The Eaterie’s PJ Christmas Party!
Dressed up for our annual Fr-amily Christmas Party!
Christmas Day with Chico’s Fam! Our first married Christmas :). And we even got to watch Home Alone together!
What is your favorite Christmas movie?
We just got back from spending a few days in the northeast with my family for the holidays. It was filled with lots of laughter, food, and as usual in my family – games.
For those who don’t know my family we are a competitive bunch, and it has been known to get heated over the occasional game of spades. Alyssa, however, not so much, and must have been in shock after witnessing her first DiCicco family game night years ago. But she hung in there and has since started a new tradition in our house called “Alyssa winning everything”.
You see she someway, somehow finds a way to beat all of us in the most effortless way. And this doesn’t just stop with games. She has been known to win a contest or two; and not just little things – I’m talking computers, gift cards … I seriously think we need to start playing the lottery.
Well last year my fam was introduced to a new game called Quiddler – it’s a sort of word game that involves cards. Let’s just say Alyssa didn’t make any friends at my house. She was easily the champ, and this year my brother introduced us to a new game called Farkle (yep I know…it sounds ridiculous).
It’s a dice throwing game that has some strategy to it, but more importantly requires luck. Right off the bat I knew we were in trouble; Luck is Alyssa’s specialty. And sure enough the woman can roll some dice! My dad gave her a little bit of a run, but when the dust settled she beat us…beat us bad.
Here are a few pics from our Farkle extravaganza:
Look out Vegas here we come! What are some of you favorite party games?
Since Chico got to put together his Christmas Playlist, I thought it would be nice to add mine to the blog, too! Mine is not as “Scrooge-esque”. I prefer the more calm and soothing Christmas songs along with a few early ’00s throwbacks.
(Random picture of us from Christmas 2008)
Without further ado, here you have it- Aly’s Christmas Jamz:
“Hey Guys, It’s Christmas Time!” – Sufjan Stevens
“Merry Little Christmas” – Sarah McLachlan
“Bring a Torch, Jeanette, Isabella” – Joy Williams
“Love’s In Our Hearts on Christmas Day” – *NSYNC
“What Christmas Means to Me” – Hanson
“Jingle Bell Rock” – Green River Ordinance
“In the Bleak Midwinter” – Paper Route
“The Christmas Song” – She & Him
“Winterlove” – Parachute
“Tracks in the Snow” – The Civil Wars
“Silver Bells” – Sleeping At Last
I’ve been wanting to make an old school Christmas mix too- with more oldies songs. Any suggestions?
I’m one of those people who has to wait until after Thanksgiving to start playing Christmas songs, but when December rolls around I’m all about it! This past week Alyssa and I were doing some work and decided to put on some Christmas tunes.
As we started going through our playlists we noticed they were quite different. Then it hit me – I’m addicted to sad Christmas songs. I don’t know why, but I guess I’ve always been. I mean don’t get me wrong – I’m generally a happy person and I love Christmas, but there’s just something about sad Christmas songs that I love.
So for any other Christmas-tune Scrooges out there, I wanted to put together a list of my favorite sad Christmas songs (in no particular order):
1. “Baby Please Come Home” – Death Cab For Cutie
2. “Thank God The Year Is Finally Over” – Paper Route
3. “Christmas Song” – American Bang
4. “Christmas Lights” – Coldplay
5. “Last Christmas” – Jimmy Eat World
6. “Fairytale of New York” – The Pogues
7. “Blue Christmas” – Bright Eyes
8. “That Was The Worst Christmas Ever” – Sufjan Stevens
9. “If We Make It Through December” – Merle Haggard
10. “Another Lonely Christmas” – Prince
11. “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” – Sleeping At Last
12. “River” – Sarah McLachlan
It’s that time of year again…
When holiday cheer is in the air, presents are tucked under the tree, and twinkling lights fill the streets.
Once we got back to TN after Thanksgiving, we put on some Christmas tunes, lit up our fireplace, and did a little decorating of our own! We couldn’t decide whether to get a fake tree or a real tree… after many people told us a real tree was the better choice, we went against the grain and got a fake tree. After all, I always forget to water my little indoor plant… I’m not sure how I would take care of a big Christmas tree!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
What are some of your favorite holiday traditions? We want to steal them! 😉