Welcome to December 2020’s blog! This month was spent trying out a variety of new holiday traditions to keep the mood festive and bright. Come see what we got up to!
On the first day of Christmas- er, on the first day of December, my true love sur-pris-ed me…with Whittard’s chocolate and teeeeeea. For real, I had plans back in November to get both the hot chocolate and tea advent calendars from our favorite fancy tea supplier, Whittard’s of Chelsea, but the hot chocolate calendar sold out promptly. This sneaky guy got one the instant it came back in stock and surprised me!
Son: “I don’t really like the salt in my salted caramel hot chocolate.”
Dad: “So I can drink it?”
Son: “we-ellll, I *do* like the caramel part, so no.”
Our baby turned 8 months old! She was way more interested in pulling ornaments off the tree and chewing on them than she was in smiling.
We gave gingerbread decorating a try courtesy of Brown Cow Ice Cream in Forest Park…
Playing around with bokeh on my recently-acquired 35 mm lens!
It’s a little hard to see, but the sun is shining in through the window and making rainbows in her hair. 🙂 This month she is making strides with army crawling faster and faster, and doing side-planks. She’s sitting up but it’s a little wobbly!
Giving whole wheat-oatmeal bread a try. Broccoli and strawberries are big hits!
Chewing on mom’s tea cup and trying but not succeeding in chewing on Dad’s phone charger.
Pandemic selfie walk! We were going to go to the grocery store to get a tiny Christmas tree to put in our son’s room to surprise him, but then discovered they’d sold out weeks ago. The walk in the sunshine was still great!
The morning wakeup view.
Supervising from her activity saucer as Mom and Dad work on her new room…
Admiring artificial biodegradeable snow!!
He was so excited – “when I come home from school I get to play with the fake snow!!”
On Winter Solstice we went to the First United Church of Oak Park to walk the labyrinth!
The Frank Lloyd Wright Unity Temple is right across the street and it’s always lit up beautifully – as is the First United Church!
Admiring our Solstice treat – a Buche de Noel from Pastry Revival Bakery! It was SO good. Backstory – for his birthday my son asked for a “woodchipper cake” – and even after clarification (“I want a woodchipper made of candy on top of the cake, shooting sawdust into a trailer”) it was *ahem* decided that an underwater theme was a better cake choice. HOWEVER, he wouldn’t stop asking me where his woodchipper cake was. So when I saw that Pastry Revival was making Buches de Noel I was happy to present to my son a cake that “you have to pretend you’re a woodchipper when you eat.”
I should probably mention that my son loves to watch arborists, hence the woodchipper fascination.
Decked out in new matching pajamas – yet another new-to-us tradition to try out!
Why yes, the camera *is* balanced on top of a big plastic tub of ornaments for this shot.
I GET TO TURN THE PAGES, DAD.
I have a tradition – of taking a photo of the kid(s) every year in front of the tree, more recently with the addition of “Greendolph, the green-nosed reindeer.” For the very first iteration back in 2016 we put our son in this box because he was so little he couldn’t sit upright, so this year my sister sent us the box from California for our daughter’s picture. Thank you for paying the postage to support my ridiculousness, sis!!
Awww so cute, she wants to give big brother a hug! – Wait, never mind, she just wanted to chew on his sleeve.
Christmas morning, hanging out under the tree.
Baby’s first Christmas! The tissue paper was one of the biggest hits.
Assorted scenes from Christmas morning – reading with dad, fancy sweater, checking out the new ball pit, NEW GARBAGE TRUCK TOY (this will be garbage truck #3; garbage trucks are cooler than woodchippers), and posing in my new sweater that is so personally on-brand for me: a hedgehog in a tea cup.
On a gloriously sunny day after Christmas we ventured out to Millenium and Maggie Daley Parks in downtown Chicago with the goal of watching skaters on the ribbon ice skating path!
We saw beautiful art glass installations and this really neat amphitheater…
Lurie Garden (which was beautiful in winter but I can only imagine how gorgeous it must be in the growing season!! Tons of native flowers here!), and the bean.
Watching skaters….and a little slice of native plantings right in the heart of downtown. Finally, a view across Lake Michigan – you can see all the way to Indiana!! haha!
Thanks for joining me – catch up with us next month!!
Kristen Hazelton is an Oak Park, IL (Chicago, IL metro area) and Livermore, CA (San Francisco East Bay Area) senior, family, and engagement photographer. She occasionally photographs in San Diego, CA, Tucson, AZ, and Seattle, WA. You can inquire about your own photoshoot here!