Noah's First Christmas

Christmas this year was especially memorable now that Noah is here. I remember feeling Noah move inside me last Christmas, and it's wild to think that he is now so close to crawling. Time has just gone by so fast, and it's hard to believe that Noah will be 8 months old in a couple days. I know I tend to go on and on in my blogs, but that is mostly because I am turning this blog into a book for Noah to have when he gets older. It will have all of the pictures and stories from when I was pregnant and throughout his first year of life. I'm not sure I will keep writing after that point b/c it's just not something I make a lot of time for these days. As you can tell, I haven't written in almost a month. I got behind because there are so many different things I need to write about, so here we go!
Christmas for us began on Sunday, December 21st with my mom, Kent, my uncle Tom, and my grandparents. After an awesome church service on God's grace, Ryan, Noah, and I drove down to Martinsville where my mom and Kent live. We had lots of delicious appetizers and had a dirty Santa exchange. Noah got a Leap Frog Activity Table and a cute little outfit from his Nana and Grandpa Bauer. His great grandparents picked out a big stuffed dog for him (you'll see it in a picture later). I thought this gift was especially neat because they gave me a HUGE Nipper Dog (the RCA dog) when I was little. It's fun to think that even after they are in Heaven, Noah will have that big dog to remember them. By the way, Noah had so much fun opening his gifts! He would wave his arms and jump up and down while opening his gifts. It was really cute and unexpected for him to be so involved with opening them at his age! Ryan got a new saw and now won't have to borrow the neighbor's every times he needs one, and I got another Stephanie Meyer book (which I finished two days ago), some fun stuff to do my nails, and a Willow Tree figurine. It was a great day with our family!On Christmas Eve Eve, we were having some pretty terrible weather around Indy. We drove through the city, which was a good thing since 465 got shut down that evening, in order to get to Ryan's parents' house. Noah woke up with about 20 minutes to go in the car and began SCREAMING! I'm telling you, there is nothing so overwhelming as a screaming baby (not fussing - bloody murder screaming) while driving in bad weather. By the time we reached Ryan's parents' house, I just handed Noah over to his Mama and took a little break to unload the car and gather myself. :) We have a tradition that every Christmas Eve Eve, our family and Ryan's sister's family both stay with Ryan's parents (Noah's Mama and Papa). We had a delicious Christmas dinner and just hung out with each other. Noah put up a HUGE fight that night trying to go to bed. Typically, I rock him for a couple minutes and put him in his crib awake. I didn't want him to ever rely on me rocking him in order to get him to fall asleep. We wanted Noah to be able to soothe himself to sleep. Well, this particular night, he just SCREAMED and SCREAMED and SCREAMED! After about an hour of fighting us, he finally went to sleep. I was so exhausted! We woke up the next morning and opened gifts. It was really fun because Ryan and I picked out great gifts for Mady, Mikayla, and Micah, and we loved watching their faces as they opened their gifts. Mady got the Gourmet Cupcake Maker, Mikayla got an Easy Bake Oven, and Micah got this huge race car track set. They were so excited! Noah got a Baby Einstein book, a Polar Bear toy (shown in a picture below), and some money for his savings account. I feel like I'm forgetting something...but I hope not! Kelli's family picked out a little bongo drum toy for Noah, and Kelli also got Noah a Calvin and Hobbs book that has an entire collection of comics. She wrote Noah the sweetest letter inside the book about how Ryan used to love to read Calvin and Hobbs and would just laugh and laugh. It was a really thoughtful gift! Noah got tired about halfway through opening gifts and needed to take his morning nap. So after putting him down, we finished opening gifts and had breakfast. Awhile after that, Kelli's family had to go home to get ready for church, as their church has Christmas Eve services, and Joel works at the church. Ryan, Noah, Kya, and I headed home and just relaxed. I made some Christmas cookies with my awesome cookie press (thanks Kel!), and Noah and Ryan set out a few cookies and some milk for Santa. Then we put the little man to bed. We watched It's a Wonderful Life, a tradition that we started a few years ago, and then headed to bed ourselves.

On Christmas morning, we came downstairs, and Kya got to enjoy her presents first. Then, Noah opened his gifts! Santa brought him a nice toybox...that Santa sure knows what he's doing! He knew we needed somewhere to put all of those toys. :) Ryan and I also bought him a little Sit-to-Stand toy and a car wash toy that he'll someday get to play with in the bath tub. For now, he likes to play with it in his new play room.

Ryan and I also exchanged gifts. We really tried to be reasonable this year, as you could probably tell with Noah's gifts. One, we don't want Noah to ever lose sight of the importance of relationships over material things...as well as the true meaning of Christmas. Two, with my working part time this year, we wanted to make good choices with our money. So, anyway, Ryan and I exchanged gifts. I bought him a bunch of guitar stuff (a pedal, cleaner, strings, etc.), some DVDs, and a book about guitar pedals. He got me a new necklace with a cross pendant (something I've wanted for a long time but wouldn't buy myself), a recipe box and cards, and some freshwater pearl earrings. We had bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits for breakfast and just relaxed and spent the day at home. Ryan's parents came over later that evening to see what Noah got for Christmas and to spend the night. We stayed up really late just talking and laughing with a nice warm fire. It was a great way to end Christmas Day!

The next morning (Friday), we drove up to my Dad and Danette's (Noah's Grandpa and Grandma Till) house in South Whitley. After getting the Jeep unpacked, we hung out for awhile before making some oreo ball cupcakes for the weekend. They are a delicious little treat, and I really regret not taking any pictures for this blog. I was pretty proud of myself! :) That night, we met my cousins and their families at The Brownstone, a really cute Zionsville-like restaurant in my hometown. Noah fell asleep in the car on the way there and stayed asleep for about 30 minutes. It must have been just enough to keep him in a good mood because despite being out past his bedtime and being passed around from one relative to another, he never fussed, cried, or even frowned. He would just really study the person's face of whomever was holding him at the time. It was really cute! My cousin Maria picked out a cute book with Nursery Rhymes in it for Noah. He will really enjoy that as he gets older!

The next morning my brother and his wife Kristen came down to Dad and Danette's. We opened gifts and once again were completely spoiled. Ryan has been saving up for this thing called a Pod X3 Live for his guitar for months. He even went as far as selling some old stuff on Craigslist in order to have enough money to buy it. Well, little did he know that my dad bought it for him on Black Friday in order to get it for 15% off. Then, I was giving my dad some of the money Ryan had saved up in order to help purchase it. Anyway, he was SO excited to open that gift and had no idea! I love surprises!

They got me a beautiful coat from Victoria's Secret and a gift card to Von Maur. I really could use some new clothes!! :) My dad has been saying for years that all he wants for Christmas is World Peace. Well, Noah wasn't sure what to get his grandpa, so we told him that Grandpa just wants World Peace. Well, he must have misheard us because he ended up making my dad some "Whirled Peas" instead. As you can imagine, Noah has LOTS of peas these days!

Noah got a bunch of cute things like books, some onesies (Beatles and John Deere), some John Deere dishes, etc. and a savings bond from his Grandpa and Grandma. When we were opening gifts, Noah kept hitting this big gift next to him like he knew it was his. When we put it down in front of him to open, he just started moving his whole body, waving his arms around, and was looking directly from Dan and Kristen to his gift and back to them again. It was SO cute! They got him this big Fisher Price Cruise-and-Go toy (see picture below) that has all sorts of activities with which to play. He was so excited, we just laid him down on top of the box! After opening gifts, we had a wonderful lunch with everyone's favorites. We watched Elf because my Dad and Danette had never seen it before and then played with their Wii Fit the next day. We had such a great visit, and if my memory wasn't so bad, I would be able to remember more details about all the little things we did. :)

Well, that was Christmas this year. Again, most of these details are mostly for Noah as he gets older. We know he won't remember his first Christmas, but at least he'll be able to read about it. We hope you had a very Merry Christmas, too!!

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