Thursday, February 26, 2015

Brunch at the Grand

One of my favorite holiday traditions is our family brunch at the Grand America Hotel.  My sweet grandmother treats all her Children, grand children and great-grand children to a Christmas brunch, the week after Christmas, so we can all get together and catch up.

I always love getting to see my cousin Brian.

After brunch we always take a tour of the Christmas windows and fill our their cute little passports to receive our free cookie at the end.  The windows are always so fun to see, they do a great job every year.  Now if only they would do candy windows like ZCMI did while we were growing up, that would be amazing!

James and I took like 5 pictures in this hallway and were photo bombed every single time and had no idea

 I could not resist getting some macrons from the magical bake shop in the Grand.  That green one is indeed covered in gold glitter.  MAGICAL.

I had a chubby cheeked thief steal my cookies before I could even take a bite ....

After I finally got my cookies back from sweet baby James, I had another blond haired bandit eyeing my bag of sweets.  I was nice and shared with him, I can never deny Thomas' sweet little face or high pitched voice.

The nephews got us all hooked on Trivia Crack and we all help each other try and guess the correct answers, With all of our combined interests, we are a pretty unbeatable team.  Beth, Andrew and John are good resources for science questions, Karin and I help with the art questions, I also help with the entertainment category. Mike and Dad are helpful with the sports questions, Mom is good with the history questions and Reece is just a fountain of knowledge and helped in every category and Ben is extremely good at making educated guesses.

Second Christmas

The week after Christmas Lex came into town and we all got together to celebrate second Christmas as friends!  It was one of the funnest nights of my life.  We had a delicious hot chocolate bar, as well as a treats table that will blow the taste buds right out of your mouth once you see the picture below. Laura set out mattresses beneath her Christmas tree and we gathered together in our most comfortable sweats and watched movies, told stories and shared lots and lots of giggles.

Christmas treats for daysssssss

Homemade S'more cupcakes

When we woke up we had stockings waiting for us from Santa Lu!  Cutest gives ever!  We did our gift exchange while we ate breakfast, then we spent the whole day lounging around and having all sorts of fun together.  I have lots of more photos from our Second Christmas get together, but they have been locked away in the giggle vault and are not allowed to be shown to the world.

I was excited about the gifts I had put together for Second Christmas.  I had found different tote bags that were perfect for each of my friends, and I filled them with goodies that were equally as perfect for their different personalities.  I forgot to take a picture of all of them but here is a picture of Dina helping me wrap all of them.

That night we went out to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory and went to see the Christmas Lights at Temple Square.  It was quite a bit colder then the last time I went to see the lights so we didn't stay for very long, but it was fun to see them with my girls!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


On Christmas Eve, Jenny and I made ebelskivers for the family for lunch, to go along with my mom's super cute hot chocolate bar, they were a hit.  

They were filled with cream cheese and berries

In the afternoon we had family bread day.  We made greek bread sculptures and pans and pans of sweet rolls to have for breakfast on Christmas morning.

At dinner, the Madison's had a big announcement to make to the family... They are going to have a baby!!!!  We are all thrilled to pieces for them.  She told me back in October because she wasn't able to ride any of the rides on my birthday trip to Disneyland so I have been keeping this secret like a champ for months!  It's so fun for everyone to know and share in the excitement. She gave everyone gingerbread cookies with her due date written in icing.

Then it was time for the annual family Christmas concert.

James is excited for when he can join in on the concert performances.

We ended the night by watching the nativity movie and remembering the reason for the season.

I enlisted the help of the oldest three nephews to come help me with some last minute wrapping, they were happy to help and made it so much more fun.

The next morning we all gathered into the Christmas room for opening presents after our delicious breakfast of home made sweet buns.

James went around "taking pictures" of everyone.   He has learned from watching everyone take pictures on their phone that you smile even when you are the one taking the photo, he was being pretty precious.

Dad made this gourmet chocolate peppermint cake for Christmas dinner dessert.  He would be made if I just posted the silly picture so I posted a nice looking one as well ... 

It was a wonderful Christmas filled with family, fun and memories.