Mom and Dad

December 1st is my mom AND dad's birthday.

Some years get tricky, but some years work out beautifully (like this one).

To start the day off, we met my dad and his wife, Ellie, at the District. We had lunch at Elephant Bar and Dad blew out a candle to make his yearly wish:

After lunch, we went to visit Santa. When Grace was a baby, she loved him. The next year she hated him. This year, she was very unsure of him. He wasn't the typical old Santa sitting in his chair waiting for kids to jump on his lap. He got up, walked around, hugged us all, talked to us, and even pet some dogs walking around the District. I think him being "real" totally helped out in the kiddo department.

We bought two pictures so we could get one with all four of us and one with just the babies. The first one was easy because Mom and Dad were right there:

After that one, we asked Grace if she'd sit on his lap and smile for a picture. Since she loves having her picture taken, she obliged:

After the picture, Santa asked Grace what she wanted for Christmas. She replied, "stickers", with a bit of a scared cry to it. Santa asked, "you want some Snickers?" I whispered to him that she wanted stickers, and he told her how he'd bring her all kinds of stickers: lick on stickers, magnet stickers, and sticky stickers. That made her just happy enough to say, "I want Minnie Mouse toys, too, and toys for Charley, too."

Santa got up and told us to use our own cameras to take whatever other pictures we wanted:

Charley tried pulling his beard to see if he was a fake:

He truly was the coolest Santa I've ever met. He gave us all more hugs, and then we had to go visit his friends. Rudolph, Polar Bear, Soldier, and Frosty were hanging out by the big Christmas tree:

Grace was more afraid of them than Santa. She wanted to be right next to them, but wouldn't touch them. Charley smiled and giggled every time one would come near her:

We had a lot of fun sipping on hot chocolate and coffee and dancing with Santa's friends:

Once it was time to go, we wished Dad a happy birthday again and headed towards Lake Mead. My mom was having a birthday party on the hosueboat since the Las Vegas Boat Harbor light parade happened to be the same night. Of course the babies fell asleep on the way out there:

When we got to the lake, we started walking down the dock to get to the boat. There was a big family feeding the fish and ducks, so of course all of the fish in the whole lake were crammed into one slip to grab as many Cheetos as they could get:

Since we stopped to watch, and Grace was so amazed, they gave her a bag of Cheetos to feed the fish herself. She was so excited and had such a blast. Even Charley liked watching the seagulls pick the food out of the air as soon as it was thrown:

We got to the boat just in time to catch the most beautiful sunset:

We hung out with all kinds of friends, ate yummy food from El Torito, and Grace and Jacques played together. They had so much fun waiting for the boats to come:

The houseboat is docked at the end of the marina, so the decorated boats drove right past us. Some of them were pretty awesome, and Grace loved watching them:

Once the parade was over, we headed home to cap our long day off watching Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in bed with our babies.

Happy Birthday, Mom and Dad! We love you both so much and are so very thankful to have you both in our lives.

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