Merry, Merry Christmas

I used to think Christmas was special.

But, I never knew just how special it could be until I met these two people.

Seeing their excitement is the best part of Christmas.  One of my favorite memories from this Christmas was when Mike took Ari out shopping just the two of them.  They went to Kohls to pick something out for Giada and I.  Mike told me that Ari was very excited to pick his gifts out and chose very carefully.    When they got home that evening Ari came in the door and was beaming.  He told me he had a special secret for me.  He just kept repeating “I have a SECRET mumma, I have a secret”. It was one of the sweetest things ever.  I cannot wait to see what he has picked out for me.  I’m sure I will love whatever it is!

1480741_10101954314315458_888503143_nI have been waking up early and staying up late preparing for Christmas and I cannot wait to see the looks on their faces when they wake up Christmas morning.  It will truly be something magical.

This year we visited Santa at Somerset and Ari was very excited.  Last year things didn’t go so hot so I was a little nervous.  He did great and told Santa that he wanted a Big, Huge Lawnmower.  He really is Mike’s son! LOL

Merry Christmas from the Muglia Family

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Reindeer Cookies

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I often compare my life to the infamous scene in Home Alone when everyone wakes up and realizes that they overslept.  The entire family is running around the house frantically trying to get out the door, that instrumental song “Holiday Flight” is playing, and it just looks like complete chaos.  That is how I feel this December and in my mind that song is playing on repeat.

Tis the Season!  Although I started pre-gaming for Christmas super early this year we have been crazy busy with parties, work commitments, juggling 2 kids, and just the general hustle and bustle of the holiday season.  Not too mention that my oven has been acting up, so I just didn’t have it in me to “bake” cookies this year.   Rather than throw in the towel I decided to “Fake Bake” something super easy that didn’t involve my oven OR even my mixer.  The Turkey Cookies  I made for Thanksgiving were so simple and cute I decided to make something similar for Christmas.  Reindeer cookies 🙂

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Supplies:

Nutter Butter Cookies

Small pretzels

Wilton candy eyes

Red M&M’s

Melting Chocolate

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I started by lining my cookie sheet with wax paper and laying out my pretzels.  The chocolate cools super fast so I also had my eyes and nose close by ready to assemble!

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Again the best way to melt chocolate is to put it in a glass measuring cup and microwave in 30 second intervals at 50% power.  Dip the cookie in the chocolate once its nice and melted and balance with a fork.  Wait until most of the drips have fallen off and then place on top of the antlers.

DSCN3085Immediately put your eyes and nose on the wet chocolate.  Repeat this until you have made as many Reindeer as you like.  If the chocolate starts to get chunky go ahead and microwave for another 30 seconds.

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Happy Fake Baking everyone!!

Giada Estelle { 6 months }

Seriously?! How is my baby 6 months old already?  It is truly amazing to see the transformation from newborn to 6 months!  I can’t believe she is  HALF A YEAR.

Giada’s Stats:
Height: 26 in (Ari was 26.5)
Weight: 15 lbs, 12 oz (Ari was 17lbs, 12 oz)

Clothing: Size 6 months, Shoes size 2

Diaper: Just switched to size 2

Hair: Definitely a lot lighter in color than Ari’s. I think it’s finally starting to come in!

Eyes: Still the prettiest sparkling blue I have ever seen, I really hope she keeps this color!

Eating: Giada gets four 8 oz bottles during the day and has started having one meal a day of solids.  She’s tried sweet potatoes, peas, squash, pears, peaches, and bananas.  There hasn’t been anything that she doesn’t like yet!!

Sleep:  Giada is still being swaddled and happily goes down at 730 every night and sleeps until 730 or so every morning!  It is truly amazing how well she goes down!  Around 6 weeks we started her in her crib and on her routine.  Every night we would do bath, bottle, swaddle, sound spa, and then place her in her crib awake.  It didn’t take long for the routine to work and I credit that for my AWESOME sleeper! With Ari we weren’t so great about putting him to bed “awake” and I remember some really tough nights at this age getting him to initially fall asleep.

Milestones:  I forgot just how many changes start happening around 6 months!

  • Giada just started sitting on her own and it is SO much better for picture taking!  It was like a light switch went on for her.  One day she couldn’t sit and then the next she could sit there solid as a rock for over 10 minutes!
  • She is doing awesome with her motor skills and can pick up most of her small toys and bring them to her mouth.  Which is key because she also got her first tooth and is teething like crazy these days.  I love watching her in action as she is trying to figure things out.  She will lay on her tummy and try to move herself around to get her toys closer to her (so she can put them in her mouth, obviously). I’m pretty sure crawling won’t be too far off.
  • Giada LOVES, LOVES her big brother and always smiles when he is around!!  Most mornings he climbs into her crib to wake her up and “snuggle” her and it is the most precious thing I have ever seen.  Her face literally lights up when Ari talks to her.
  • She’s very vocal recently and likes to not only talk to us, but she also loves to make bubble noises with her lips.  Her personality is really starting to come out and while we thought she might be a little more reserved than her bro, she’s beginning to prove us wrong.

Ok this picture just kills me.  My baby standing. OMG.  Before we know it I will be in full throttle first birthday mode.

HAPPY HALF BIRTHDAY GIADA!  You truly complete our family.  We love you.

Thanks a Latte { Teacher Gift }

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Ari has many special people in his life.  For Christmas I wanted to come up with something unique yet practical for him to give some of his teacher aides.  What teacher person doesn’t love getting a Starbucks gift card as a gift?!  I know I love it!! Just handing someone a gift card, though, didn’t seem very “fun” to me so I made an inexpensive gift card holder for them!

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To start I bought a 3 pack of $15 Starbucks cards from Sam’s club.  I think I only paid $43 for them!  Then when I was at Target during one of my bi-weekly trips I nicely asked the barista for a few frap cups/lids.  I stuffed the cups with tissue paper and the gift card and then I attached cute little “Thanks a Latte” tags to the front of the cup.  To finish off the gift I added a red bow to the top.  I’m sure Ari is going to love handing these out to his teachers this year!

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Homemade Wreath { Toddler Project }

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Let me start by saying that Ari just loves doing “projects”…. he likes getting his hands into whatever he can and the more glue the better!  The kids each have Christmas trees in their rooms and I was looking for something to spruce them up.  I was at Meijer the other day browsing their Christmas supplies and found these adorable felt wreaths! I grabbed them along with some felt letters and cute little pom poms!

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{ Supplies: Felt wreath, assorted pom poms, glitter glue, hot glue, & ribbon to hang }

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To get started I placed the kids names on each of their wreaths with the hot glue gun and then let Ari go to town decorating.

When he was all done decorating I added a ribbon to the back for hanging.

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Then they were ready to be hung on the tree or on their bedroom doors!

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Holiday Apparel

It’s no lie I am slightly obsessed with dressing my mini people.  Ari and Giada’s outfits are always carefully calculated and I was super excited to plot out their Christmas outfits for 2013…  Ofcourse they couldn’t have just ONE outfit, so I have picked out 3 holiday looks for the kids; Daycare/Shopping with Mom, Santa Visit/Christmas Eve/Day, & Jammies.

Daycare Party/Shopping with Mom:

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First I wanted a cute outfit for them to wear to their party at daycare.  It needed to be something that was comfortable and that I didn’t mind getting messy because let’s be real here the kids get messy at daycare.  I bought both of these shirts last year on clearance after Christmas and paired them with items that we already had! Score!

Santa visit/Christmas Eve & Day: IMG_20131124_091115These are also the outfits the kids wore for our Christmas card this year.  My original intent was to capture an outdoorsy picture of these two and I wanted the contrasting plaids to have a retro vibe.  The outdoor shoot was a bust, but this combo was perfect for our inside shoot and will look great when we visit Santa.  Giada’s dress & Ari’s sweater are from Carters.  The button down shirt WITH the matching bowtie was from Old Navy.  All other items we owned.

{Giada may or may not have a couple of other dresses we might work into rotation for a couple of the holiday parties}

Jammies:

IMG_20131123_094020Finally, the kiddos needing cute festive jammies to change into at the end of each holiday party ANNNND to wear when they opened gifts on Christmas morning.  Both jammies are from Carters.  Giada’s is circa 2011 since it was Ari’s outfit when he was just a little babe himself.

I’m so excited for them to wear all of the outfits I have picked out!