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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My Little "Turkey" says "It's Beginning to Look A Lot like Christmas"

   


Here's our little "turkey" trying to eat his bubbles (a.k.a. daddoos)! He loves to pop them with his mouth and nose and then run to the couch and wipe them off. 

We spent Thanksgiving in Union at Mommaw and Poppaw's house surrounded by some of the best home-cooking in the entire Southeast! Our delicious feast consisted of both turkey and ham, green beans and green bean casserole as well as a huge assortment of other fixin's: creamed corn, sweet potato casserole, collards, dressing and gravy, squash with onions, strawberry pretzel salad, macaroni and cheese, and dinner rolls.  And let's not forget the desserts--pecan pie, chocolate pie, chocolate cake, pumpkin pie, and pumpkin bars. Everything was absolutely wonderful and of course, Riley loved all the attention he received being the only "baby" in the house.  In addition to Mommaw and Poppaw, he entertained Grandma, Papa, Kelly,  Joel, Eliza, Rod, Tommy, Ann Marie, and Anna Caroline (who ended up being his most favorite  playmate).  As we let our food digest, we browsed the Black Friday ads (where stores actually opened earlier than ever before...Toys R Us at 9 p.m., Wal-mart at 10, and many others at midnight).  I was particularly excited to be able to accomplish most of my Christmas shopping online this year and still take advantage of the great Early Bird deals.
 
Once we recovered from our turkey-induced coma and headed home, we decided to get a head-start on Christmas this year.  So on Friday, we climbed into dad's truck and headed to Penland Christmas Tree Farm for our annual tradition of cutting down our own tree.  Riley loved walking between the rows of bright, sweet-smelling evergreens, but the uneven ground did have him landing on the ground quite a bit.  We stopped by the chicken coup as we dragged our "just-right" 8-foot tree back to the main building.  From there, we went for hayride pulled by one of Riley's favorite vehicles...a tractor! In fact, he was sorely disappointed when he found out he had to ride in the wagon part and couldn't climb up behind the wheel! Chris and I guzzled some hot chocolate as we tried to keep a hand on our adventurous toddler when we returned and then loaded up all our precious cargo! 
 Once home, I began to unpack some of the many musical decorations that Nan has supplied us with over the years and Riley had a blast pushing the on buttons for all of them and making them sing at all the same time.  I think he might make a fine conductor one day!  We waited until Riley was down for the night to put up all the decorations, and the final result looked something like this:

 We plugged it in the next morning and showed it to Riley and he immediately went and checked out the lights and ornaments.  Within just a few minutes, he had discovered a "football" ornament, "dog" ornament, "ball", and "dat" (pointing to a golf cart).  It is so neat to see how well he can communicate now and that he is taking such pleasure in identifying different objects.  One of our favorite words that Riley has learned recently is his name.  We have a special ornament with Riley's picture on it and whenever we ask him "Who is that?", he'll reply "I-ley".  It is so stinking cute! He can't pronounce the "r" sound at all, so he just leaves it off altogether. I have a feeling this Christmas is going to be even more full of wonder and joy than ever before!

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